"Gilyarovsky's self-described 'chronicle' is a spectacular verbal pastiche: conversation, from gutter gibberish to the drawing room; oratory, from illiterates to aristocrats; prose, from boilerplate to Tolstoy; poetry, from earthy humor to Pushkin." – From the Translator's Introduction
from the depths of Moscow’s sewers
to the murky back rooms of its gambling dens...
from the steam-filled halls of banyas
to the dining rooms of posh restaurants and taverns...
from the lives of students and waiters
to the struggles of market traders and heroic firemen...
Gilyarovsky documents pre-Soviet life in the Russian capital like no work before or since, and this first-ever English translation includes 88 historical images, locator maps, an index, nearly 300 useful footnotes, and a Russian language appendix of all poems and songs translated in the book.
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Winner of the prestigious 2015 Award for Best Translation into English by the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages.
From the Award Announcement: "Brendan Kiernan’s translation of Gilyarovsky’s book is truly a labor of love, with painstaking attention to detail and lucid, lively, smoothly flowing style, expertly rendering Gilyarovsky’s prose that has captivated generations of Russian-language readers... The project is enhanced by the translator’s extensive annotations, a rich selection of photographic illustrations and appendices, and, very importantly, maps... Kiernan’s deft translation fills an important lacuna in the sources on Russian cultural history."