Fyodor Maslov

Tchaikovsky Research
Fyodor Maslov (1840-1915) is seated at the table in the centre of the photograph, which shows him together with (from left to right) his sisters Varvara and Anna, the composer Sergey Taneyev, and brother Nikolay Maslov

Russian lawyer and jurist (b. 15/27 July 1840; d. 15/28 March 1915), born Fyodor Ivanovich Maslov (Фёдор Иванович Маслов).

A contemporary of Tchaikovsky's at the Imperial School of Jurisprudence in Saint Petersburg during the 1850s, and a colleague of the composer's at the Ministry of Justice from 1860 to 1861, Fyodor Maslov moved to Moscow with his sisters in 1869. Despite his liberal views, he rose to become chairman of the judicial service for the Moscow region. Maslov was considered an outstanding expert in Russian and European law, and he was also a fine raconteur and amateur poet. Among his other hobbies were music, history, philosophy, genealogy, astronomy, numismatics, photography, book collecting, and travelling. The composer Sergey Taneyev became a very close friend of Maslov, to whose scrutiny he often submitted his works, as well as of Fyodor's sisters Anna, Varvara, and Sofya, and his brother Nikolay (1853-1920). Taneyev spent many happy summers on the Maslovs' estate Selishche, in Oryol province. It was there that he worked on his opera Oresteia from 1882 to 1894, and on his book Convertible Counterpoint in the Strict Style from 1887 to 1906. Lev Tolstoy's wife, the countess Sofya Andreyevna, was another frequent guest at Selishche in the 1890s, and her husband would later borrow books from Fyodor Maslov's extensive library when working on the novel Resurrection (1899) and the story Hadji Murad (1904).

Tchaikovsky was also on friendly terms with the Maslov family, and during his periodical visits to Moscow in later years he would sometimes dine at their house. He was invited to spend the summer with them at Selishche as well, but never got round to doing so.

Correspondence with Tchaikovsky

One letter from Tchaikovsky to Fyodor Maslov has survived, dating from 1882, and has been translated into English on this website:

One letter from Maslov to the composer, dating from 19 November/1 December 1887, is preserved in the Tchaikovsky State Memorial Musical Museum-Reserve at Klin (a4, No. 2386).