Ivan Shmelev: biography and creativity of the writer

His books rivet attention from the very first lines. And it seems that the writer does not seem to pay attention to the reader at all. He draws him directly into the midst of the events that are taking place, and already everything you read about is happening directly to you. In simple words, it touches the most remote corners of our heart and soul. This is a Russian writer Ivan Shmelev. In the article we will tell about his life and work.Ivan Shmelev

Ivan Shmelyov: biography

He was born on September 21, 1873 in Zamoskvorechye. His family was from the merchant class. My father had a carpentry and bathhouse. The family lived very well, everything was enough. The house honored and respected religious traditions. Younger unquestioningly obeyed the elders, respected and loved each other. Read and write Ivan taught mother. She introduced him to the best works of Russian classics: Alexander Pushkin, Leo Tolstoy, Nikolai Gogol, Ivan Turgenev. Later, he himself enjoyed reading their books.

At the age of ten, Ivan Shmelyov entered the Moscow Gymnasium. Tough discipline fought off the desire to learn, despite the boy’s great ability. He spent all his free time studying books and textbooks. A great influence on his creative growth had the work of Alexander Pushkin. Even in high school, he began to try to write. These were short stories, sketches from life and poems.

At the age of twenty-two years, Ivan Shmelev married. Olga Alexandrovna Okhterloni became his life partner. She was a very serious and well-read girl. In the honeymoon, the young went to the holy places of Balaam.Summer Lord Ivan Shmelev

Interesting Facts

  • Favorite writers of Ivan Shmelyov - Leo Tolstoy, Alexander Pushkin, Nikolai Leskov, Vladimir Korolenko.
  • In childhood, most of the time spent in communication with working people. From them he learned to learn the beauty and power of the Russian language.
  • On the writing work of Ivan Shmelev blessed the old man Barnabas of Gethsemane during his honeymoon trip to Valaam.
  • He lived in Paris for 27 years, although he loved Russia with all his heart, but during the years of the civil war he had to leave it.
  • The ashes of the writer was transported to his homeland and buried in Moscow (Donskoy Monastery).

The beginning of creativity

The first work of Ivan Shmelev was published in 1895. It was the story "At the Mill". What is this piece about? Miller and his wife ravaged the landowner and seized the mill belonging to him in a dishonest way. But in the end, unable to withstand their atrocities, they commit suicide. In his story, Ivan Shmelev showed that the evil committed does not allow a person to live in peace. Retribution is sure to come.

Two years after the publication of the story, the first book of the writer "On the Rocks of Balaam" was published. It was written under the impression of a trip to these places. It celebrated the feat of the people inhabiting this holy land. But censorship forced Ivan Shmelev to change the book greatly, cutting out whole pieces from it. According to them, she carried seditious thoughts. Shmelev was very worried that the book had lost its originality due to the changes. Readers coolly accepted the corrected version, and Shmelev left his writing skills for many years.

Change of activity

Deciding that you should not spend your time and energy on classes in literature, Ivan Shmelyov enters the Moscow University Law School. It was necessary to get a profession to support his family.Born son Sergei. In the family it was the only and beloved child.

After graduation, Shmelev serves as a tax inspector. By the nature of his activities, he has to communicate with a large number of people, later these meetings will be reflected in his books.Ivan Bumblebee books

Ivan Shmelev: books

The revolution of 1917 changed the life of a writer, but despite this, he always showed an interest in a person, in his spiritual life. Let's remember the best works of the writer:

  • "Summer of God" (Ivan Shmelev). One of the brightest books of the writer. The eyes of the child show the peasant and merchant life. Shmelev masterfully recreates the paintings of the life and labor of Russia in the late 19th century. A special place in the book takes a description of the holidays.
  • "The Sun of the Dead" (Ivan Shmelev). Personal impressions of the writer of the revolution and the Civil War. This is a tragic book about the "Red Terror". The book is translated into many foreign languages ​​and is considered one of the best creations of the author.
  • "Man from the restaurant". The story shows the dramatic fate of an ordinary person. The waiter Jacob Skorokhodov suffers insults and humiliation from visitors every day.But it can be called the Man with a capital letter, unlike other characters. The inner world of the hero is revealed deeply and completely.
  • "Ways of Heaven." This novel is the last major work of Ivan Shmelev. He dedicated it to his beloved wife. In the image of the protagonist - engineer Weidengammer - described the uncle of Olga Shmeleva. The main idea of ​​the novel is that the soul must necessarily pass through suffering in order to be reborn to a new life. Heroes are a difficult path of spiritual development.

the sun of the dead Ivan Bumblebee

The tragedy in the family. Emigration

The events of 1917 shocked the soul of Ivan Shmelev. Although at first he was pleased to speak at rallies and accepted the ideas of the socialists. When Ivan Shmelev saw that revolution breaks a man and inflicts a strong blow to his morality, he leaves for the Crimea. Here, in the military commandant's office, his son Sergei serves Wrangel. When the city was captured by the Bolsheviks, Sergei was arrested, and after a while he was shot. Parents felt the death of their beloved child.

After a while, a difficult decision was made about emigration. First, Ivan Shmelev and his wife lived in Berlin, and then moved to Paris.The writer has to suffer another tragic loss - the death of his wife. June 24, 1950 Ivan Shmelev died of a heart attack.Ivan Bumblebee biography


The works of Ivan Shmelev should definitely be read and re-read in order not to become stale with soul. His books are like a sip of cold water on a hot day. What is the difference between his books? Love for Russia, its history, way of life, faith in the triumph of good and justice, humanism, beauty of spiritual values. The contribution of this remarkable Russian writer to the history of world literature has yet to be assessed.

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