Letter 67

Date by 6/18 July 1864
Addressed to [unidentified person]
Where written Trostinets
Language Russian
Autograph Location Washington (USA): The Library of Congress, Music Division
Publication П. И. Чайковский. Полное собрание сочинений, том V (1959), p. 79–80 (abridged)

Text and Translation

Russian text
(original)
English translation
By Brett Langston
Милый друг!

Злоупотребляя твоею добротою ко мне и пользуясь твоим позволением просить у тебя, сколько нужно, я пренахально решаюсь просить тебя прислать мне не 40, как я просил, — а 50 рублей; конечно, если это тебя не стеснит.

0067 ex1.jpg
[Не откажи! О друг мой милый!]

Присылай мне по следующему адресу: Харьковской губернии, в г. Ахтырку, а оттуда в Тростинец, село князя А. В. Голицына.

Засим лобызаю тебя, даю поджопника и

0067 ex2.jpg
[Остаюсь! Твой преданный друг!]
0067 ex3.jpg
[Пепуля! Чайковский!]

P. S. Если можно, душка, пришли к 10 июлю.

Dear friend!

Abusing your generosity towards me and taking up your offer to ask for as much as I need, I impertinently venture to ask you to send me not 40, as I asked, but 50 rubles; naturally, only if this doesn't cause you difficulties.

0067 ex1.jpg
[Do not refuse, o my dear friend!]

Please send it to me at the following address: Kharkov province, Akhtyrka town, and thence to Trostinets, the village of Prince A. V. Golitsyn [1].

Whereupon I kiss you, give you a kick up the backside [2] and

0067 ex2.jpg
[I remain your devoted friend!]
0067 ex3.jpg
[Pepulia! Tchaikovsky!]

P. S. Before 10 July if you can, my darling.

Notes and References

  1. Tchaikovsky was spending the summer at the estate of his friend Prince Aleksey Vasilyevich Golitsyn (1832-1901) in Trostinets, Kharkov province. He had been introduced to Golitsyn, a diplomat with a great interest in the arts, some years earlier, when he was still working at the Ministry of Justice. Golitsyn was one of the few society friends of Tchaikovsky's who stayed in touch with him after his decision to abandon the hedonistic lifestyle of a young man about town and to devote himself to music in earnest. Moreover, as Modest Tchaikovsky tells us in his biography of the composer, Golitsyn generously helped him to find pupils and often invited him to dine at his house in Saint Petersburg. See Жизнь Петра Ильича Чайковского, том 1 (1997), p. 175. Golitsyn also moved in the aristocratic homosexual circles of Saint Petersburg and other European cities, and Tchaikovsky would frequently meet up with him during his long stays abroad in later years, even though he had ambivalent feelings about his friend's lifestyle.
  2. The words "give you a kick up the backside" («даю поджопника») were censored in the Soviet complete edition of Tchaikovsky's letters, but have been restored here by reference to the original manuscript.