Ivan Shmelev

Ivan Shmelev - Russian writer, journalist, Orthodox thinker from the Moscow merchant family Shmelyov, a representative of the conservative-Christian direction of Russian literature.

In 1931, Shmelev was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Over the years of his biography, Shmelev survived the murder of his son, persecution by the tsarist and then Soviet authorities, forced migration, poverty and much more.

We will tell about all the vicissitudes of the writer's biography right now.

So before you short biography of Ivan Shmelev.

Biography Shmelev

Ivan Sergeevich Shmelev was born on September 21, 1873 in Moscow. He grew up in a wealthy family belonging to the merchant class.

His father, Sergei Ivanovich, was the owner of the carpentry cooperative, which employed about 300 workers. In addition, he owned several baths.

The mother of the future writer, Evlampiya Savinova, was the daughter of a wealthy merchant. She was a strict, domineering and educated woman. It was she who taught her son the initial literacy.

In addition to Ivan, five more children were born in the Shmelev family.

Childhood and youth

Most of his time little Ivan spent with his father, as well as with the old carpenter Mikhail Gorkin, who was his tutor.

Since the old man was a devout man, he did everything possible to instill Shmelev love of religion. It is thanks to him that the boy began to believe in God and read the holy books.

When Shmelev was 7 years old, his father passed away, having fallen badly off a horse. After that, the upbringing of children and all the household chores lay on the shoulders of the mother.

Reaching the age of 11, Ivan Shmelev was sent to the Moscow gymnasium.

According to the memoirs of the writer, studying in it was one of the most difficult periods of his biography. In particular, he criticized teachers who treated students with indifference and “dryness”.

After that, he entered the Moscow University Law Faculty.

During this period, in one of the magazines printed work Shmelev "At the mill". It was the first success in his creative biography. In 1898 he was drafted into the army, in which he served for one year.

Creativity Shmelev

Inspired by the first success, Ivan Shmelev decides to publish a collection of short stories entitled “On the Rocks of Valaam”. In it, he shared his memories of a trip to the monastery, as well as personal political views.

However, the censors forced the writer to remove from the text those places where he criticized the royal power.

Only after numerous revisions, Shmelev is allowed to print the collection, as a result of which the readers have remained indifferent to his work.

In this regard, the disgruntled author decided to leave the writing activity for a while.

After that, Ivan Sergeevich moves to Vladimir. There he gets a job as an official on special assignments of the Vladimir State Chamber of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

He will work in this position for 8 years.

In his spare time, Ivan Shmelev again takes up the pen and writes new works. Later he will write a letter to Maxim Gorky asking him to evaluate his stories.

In 1909, Shmelev went to Moscow, where he soon joined the literary association “Sreda”. An interesting fact is that this circle also included Ivan Bunin and Alexander Kuprin.

In the period of the biography of 1912-1914. Ivan Shmelev published several short stories, among which were Grape, Wolf Rift, Rosstani, Man from the Restaurant and others. In them he described the life and culture of people belonging to different social strata.

Later in print go 2 prose collections: "Carousel" and "Face, hidden." Over time, Shmelev increasingly begins to describe the hard life of the peasants, forced to live in difficult conditions.


The February 1917 revolution Shmelev met with glee. He thought that political change would make people's lives better.

However, after confusion and overt violence began in the country, Ivan Shmelev changed his mind.

Moreover, even then it became clear to him that in the near future the Russian people would have to endure a lot of misfortunes and misfortunes.

After that, Shmelev moved to the Crimea, where he wrote the story "How it was." In it, he shares with readers the events taking place during the Civil War of 1918-1922.

Son shooting

Son Shmelev Sergey was an officer of the royal army, so when the Bolsheviks occupied the Crimea, they arrested him.

Despite the request of Shmelev, he did not manage to release his son, who was soon shot. This loss was one of the worst in his biography.

For a long time the writer was in a difficult state of mind and could not accept the death of his 25-year-old son.

Ivan Shmelev with his wife and son

Works Shmeleva

After 2 years, Ivan Shmelev decides to go to Paris, where he will live until the end of his life. In France, he wrote the famous epic "The Sun of the Dead", in which he described the horrors and consequences of the revolution.

This work has received many positive reviews from critics. In particular, he was appreciated by Thomas Mann and Alexander Solzhenitsyn.

Later, from the pen of Shmelev, the novel “The God-worshiping” and the novel “The Summer of the Lord” came out, which became especially popular among Russian émigrés. In Russia, these works will be published only on the eve of the collapse of the USSR.

In the later period of his biography, Shmelev publishes works in which his longing for the motherland is clearly traced. For example, in his novel Nanny from Moscow, he describes a grandmother who was forced to go abroad.

An interesting fact is that Shmelev was so disgusted with the Bolsheviks that he perceived the invasion of the German army in the USSR as "God's providence."

He hoped that the communist regime of Russia would be overthrown, and he would be replaced by spiritual and moral liberation.

Personal life

The only wife in the biography of Ivan Shmelev was Olga Okhterloni, with whom he met as a student.

They lived a long and happy family life. In this marriage, they had a boy, Sergei, who was shot, as mentioned above.

Ivan Shmelev with his wife Olga and son Sergey

When Olga Shmeleva passed away in 1936, the writer lived another 14 years.


In recent years, the biography of Shmelev had health problems and also experienced serious financial difficulties.

Ivan Sergeevich Shmelev died on June 24, 1950 at the age of 76 years. The cause of his death was a heart attack.

Vladimir Putin lays flowers on the grave of Ivan Shmelev

Shmelev was buried at the Paris cemetery of Sainte-Genevieve-des-Bois, but after 50 years, the remains of the writer, according to his deathbed will, were reburied in the necropolis of the Moscow Donskoy Monastery.

Later, the remains of his wife and son will be reburied next to him.

Watch the video: Иван Шмелёв "Мне бесконечно жаль" Ivan Shmeljov (April 2020).