Rus Articles Journal

Where to find the Flour town? According to B. Pasternak`s novel “Doctor Zhivago“ of

Heroes of the works B. Pasternak live and work in places where there was he. But here ill luck: the Flour town which was found on pages of the novel “Doctor Zhivago“ is not on the card in any way. Whether there was it actually? What was? Where settled down? Let`s try to understand.

The name the Flour town does not occur in the historical documents relating to Moscow, but there are indirect data which can be found on pages of the novel “Doctor Zhivago“ and some other works of Boris Pasternak. These data give the full grounds to claim that the Flour town really existed in Moscow. The assumption that it was thought up by the author does not maintain criticism. Why from forty real-life Moscow toponyms mentioned in the novel only this could be thought up? Moreover, neither in prose, nor in verses B. Pasternak is absent any thought-up toponym. All of them really exist and have address character.

The author of the novel not just speaks about the Flour town, it in detail describes this place: “This two-storeyed wing, too big for a childless couple of Sventitsky, the late old men of Sventitskiye removed at princes Dolgorukiy from time immemorial. Dolgorukiy` possession with three yards and a set of the raznostilny constructions scattered in a disorder came out to three lanes, and was called on - ancient the Flour town“. Thus, three signs of the Flour town are specified: its former owner - the prince Dolgorukiy, location of possession - came to three lanes, and its appearance - three yards with a set of constructions, of which the wing was main.

At once it is necessary to make a reservation: outside the Garden ring there is no sense to look for the Flour town. All heroes of the novel making intellectual elite of Russia live at Pasternak within Garden and even Boulevard ring or in close proximity to it: Chamberlain, Silver, Small Bronnaya, Molchanovka, Spiridonovk, Sivtsev Vrazhek and Flour town. Such person as N. N. Vedenyapin, professor, the philosopher and the sociologist giving lectures at university as envisioned by the author, has to live in limits of the Garden ring.

The fact from Pasternak`s biography - his family led by the father, L. O. Pasternak attracts attention, in 1894 moved to the state apartment to Yushkov`s house on Myasnitskaya Street where there was a School of painting. In the beginning they lived in the yard in a wing, and later in connection with demolition of a wing in the building of School. B. Pasternak in the autobiographical novel “People and Provisions“ gave the description of this yard and a wing, and it is very similar to the description of the Flour town in the novel “Doctor Zhivago“: “In the yard, against a gate to a small garden with very old trees, among outdoor constructions and services and sheds the wing towered“. Later the author of the novel settles the heroes in this wing in which the family of professor L. O. Pasternak lodged - the uncle Nikolay Nikolaevich and Sventitsky.

Eloquently and instructions of the author of the novel on the fact that the Flour town in old times was called Dolgorukiy` manor. In the 18th century on odd side of Myasnitskaya Street really there was a house of the prince Dolgorukov; behind the house there were probably a yard, a garden and economic constructions. Exactly there are also three lanes to which there was Dolgorukiy` possession, “on - ancient the Flour town“: Yushkov (sovr. Beavers), Frolov and Milyutinsky.

In the 19th century the earth belonging to the prince Dolgorukov carried over School of painting, sculpture and architecture. For commercial reasons the management of School constructed on the place of a garden inhabited cases and exhibition facilities which were rented. This circumstance - building of possession of Dolgorukov, i.e. The flour town - too it is reflected in B. Pasternak`s creativity in the novel “People and Provisions“.

To these cases B. Pasternak comes back once again in the novel “Doctor Zhivago“. Markel, the former janitor of the house Zhivago settles in the built-up Flour town: “Markel went uphill, and in Sivtsevy was not found any more. It was transferred by the commandant to the Flour town where, under the terms of service, with a family the apartment of the managing director relied it. However he preferred to live in old yard cleaner`s lodge with an earth floor, a provedenna water and the huge Russian furnace to all room. In all cases of the town pipes of a water supply system and heating burst in the winter, and only in yard cleaner`s lodge it was warm and water did not freeze“.

It is difficult to assume that at such reliability of the description of attributes B. Pasternak could invent the name the Flour town. Absence it in the famous documents on stories of Moscow does not demonstrate at all that it was not actually. Possibly, the object was insignificant and very ancient, not sustained “competition“ to a surname of Dolgorukov (Dolgorukiy). B. Pasternak did not invent the name too, and most likely heard it from someone from inhabitants of houses on the place of the former Flour town when lived here or in the course of work on the novel.

So, we defined location of the Flour town. And what this name in medieval Moscow meant? The town in ancient and medieval Moscow represented reliably fenced manor or land tenure of the man of means. On the place of the Flour town in the 16th century there was a possession of the famous merchant, trade Moscow guest of the 16th century Vasily Bobr entering into exclusive corporation of very rich people. Probably, the basis of its trade business was made by flour which production and storage was carried out in his manor, in the estate which received the name the Flour town.