Chechen Culture: From "Valerik" by Mikhail Lermontov
April 21, 2013, 01:12 PM
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Following Pushkin, Mikhail Lermontov was the second great writer in Russian literature. Born in 1807, Lermontov died in in a duel four years after Pushkin died in a duel.  A Russian Army officer, he was mentioned in the dispatches for his bravery in the 1839 Battle of Valerik south of Grozny. From the "Chechen Republic of Ishkeria" website, here's somebody's translation of part of Lermontov's poem "Valerik,'
…I asked him:
What is this place called?
‘Valerik’, he said,
Which means ‘the river of the dead’
And those who named it rest in Heaven.
— How many of them fought today?
— 7,000
— How many did the Mountaineers lose?
— Who knows? Why would they be counted!
‘They’ll be counted’, I heard a voice reply
‘This day of blood will not be forgotten’.
I turned and saw the Chechen, nodding,
With a grin of contempt upon his lips.
Days of blood are not forgotten in Chechnya.