Tatyana Davydova

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Tatyana Davydova (1861-1887)

Niece of the composer (b. 6/18 September 1861 in Kamenka; d. 19/31 January 1887 in Saint Petersburg), born Tatyana Lvovna Davydova (Татьяна Львовна Давыдова); known affectionately to the composer as Tanya (Таня).

Tatyana was the eldest child of the composer's sister Aleksandra (b. Tchaikovskaya, 1842–1891) and her husband Lev Davydov (1837–1896).

Tchaikovsky was close to his niece, and when in 1883 she became pregnant by Stanislav Blumenfeld (1850–1897), the composer and his brother Modest were the only two members of the family to be entrusted with the secret; they took Tatyana to Paris, and arranged her medical care. After she gave birth to a boy, Georges-Léon, the composer himself registered the child's birth, organised his baptism, and provided financial support. Tchaikovsky also helped to arrange Georges-Léon's eventual adoption by his brother Nikolay.

Tatyana Davydova died suddenly on 19/31 January 1887 in Saint Petersburg, Russia, aged 25. She was buried in the cemetery at the Aleksandr Nevsky Monastery in Saint Petersburg, although the grave site has not been preserved.


In 1880 Tchaikovsky dedicated his set of Six Duets, Op. 46 to Tatyana.

Correspondence with Tchaikovsky

2 letters from Tchaikovsky to Tatyana Davydova have survived, dating from 1878 and 1881, and have both been translated into English on this website:

9 letters from Tatyana Davydova to the composer, dating from around 1878 and 1879, are preserved in the Klin House-Museum Archive.