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Author: Mikhail V. Pervushin
Information about the author:

Mikhail V. Pervushin, PhD in Philology, Senior Researcher, А.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 а, 121069 Moscow, Russia.

ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1104-946X

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 



For citation:

Pervushin, M.V. “Imagological Symbols in the ‘Praise’ by Epiphanius the Wise.” Germenevtika drevnerusskoi literatury [Hermeneutics of Old Russian Literature]. Issue 21. Ed.-in-chief O.A. Tufanova. Moscow, IWL RAS Publ., 2022, pp. 239–250. (In Russian) https://doi.org/10.22455/HORL.1607-6192-2022-21-239-250 

DOI: https://doi.org/10.22455/HORL.1607-6192-2022-21-239-250
UDC: 821.161.1.0
Keywords: Old Russian literature, praise, epic, tradition, Sergius of Radonezh, poetics, self-fashioning, holiness.
Date of publication: 16.12.2022


The article examines the imagological symbols in the Praise by Epiphanius the Wise. The perception of St. Sergius of Radonezh figure today fits the idea of him that developed at the beginning of the 20th century, despite seventy years of atheistic propaganda or thanks to it. St. Sergius of Radonezh was then a symbol of Holy Russia, a “folk idea,” according to the great Russian historian V.O. Klyuchevsky. That’s how they look at him now. However, the appearance of a symbol, its crystallization in the people’s consciousness requires a certain time and, most importantly, certain texts. The first work in the cycle of texts about St. Sergius of Radonezh is Praise to him, written by his disciple and follower, St. Epiphanius the Wise. Today, Praise to St. Sergius is forgotten. It is practically not studied. The article reveals the dynamic image of St. Sergius of Radonezh, which was written by Epiphanius in Praise. At the same time, Praise is considered as such a work that could exclude the main character from the historical narrative, create a myth about him. And this, in turn, led to the formation of a symbol on its basis, as well as the tradition of its perception, stretching over different eras and, most importantly, connecting them.


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