Boris Godunov by Alexander Pushkin

Russian LiteratureChildren BooksRussian PoetryAlexander Pushkin – Boris Godunov – Contents

< < < A Plain Near Novgorod Seversk
Syevsk > > >



ONE OF THE PEOPLE. Will the tsar soon come out of the

ANOTHER. The mass is ended; now the Te Deum is going on.

THE FIRST. What! Have they already cursed him?

THE SECOND. I stood in the porch and heard how the deacon
cried out:—Grishka Otrepiev is anathema!

THE FIRST. Let him curse to his heart’s content; the
tsarevich has nothing to do with the Otrepiev.

THE SECOND. But they are now singing mass for the repose
of the soul of the tsarevich.

THE FIRST. What? A mass for the dead sung for a living
Man? They’ll suffer for it, the godless wretches!

A THIRD. Hist! A sound. Is it not the tsar?

A FOURTH. No, it is the idiot.

(An idiot enters, in an iron cap, hung round with
chains, surrounded by boys.)

THE BOYS. Nick, Nick, iron nightcap! T-r-r-r-r—

OLD WOMAN. Let him be, you young devils. Innocent one,
pray thou for me a sinner.

IDIOT. Give, give, give a penny.

OLD WOMAN. There is a penny for thee; remember me in
thy prayers.

IDIOT. (Seats himself on the ground and sings:)

The moon sails on,
The kitten cries,
Nick, arise,
Pray to God.

(The boys surround him again.)

ONE OF THEM. How do you do, Nick? Why don’t you
take off your cap?

(Raps him on the iron cap.)

How it rings!

IDIOT. But I have got a penny.

BOYS. That’s not true; now, show it.

(They snatch the penny and run away.)

IDIOT. (Weeps.) They have taken my penny, they are
hurting Nick.

THE PEOPLE. The tsar, the tsar is coming!

(The TSAR comes out from the Cathedral; a boyar in
front of him scatters alms among the poor. Boyars.)

IDIOT. Boris, Boris! The boys are hurting Nick.

TSAR. Give him alms! What is he crying for?

IDIOT. The boys are hurting me…Give orders to slay
them, as thou slewest the little tsarevich.

BOYARS. Go away, fool! Seize the fool!

TSAR. Leave him alone. Pray thou for me, Nick.


IDIOT. (To himself.) No, no! It is impossible to pray for
tsar Herod; the Mother of God forbids it.

< < < A Plain Near Novgorod Seversk
Syevsk > > >

Russian LiteratureChildren BooksRussian PoetryAlexander Pushkin – Boris Godunov – Contents

Copyright holders –  Public Domain Book

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