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125th anniversary of Maksim Bahdanovič

Earlier, Bahdanovič Street was called Alexandrovskaya Street and there was house number 25 where the Bahdanovič lived. On December 9, 1891,the second child Maksim was born here in the family of Adam and Maria.

Valentina Korotkaya,a research fellow of the Literary Museum of Maksim Bahdanovič:
The boy was born in the house, which Minsk residents called the Karkazowicz House. Karkazowicz didn’t live here, but the parish school, the first Minsk school, rented this house. There was the school on the ground floor, where children learnt and received education like modern elementary one. The apartments of the teachers were located on the second floor. Adam Bahdanovič worked as a teacher in this school.

After the birth of Maksim, the family lived here just for six more months. During one of the lessons, Adam Egorovich started to cough blood and the doctor diagnosed tuberculosis. At that time, this disease was incurable. It was forbidden to teach with such disease. Adam found a job in Hrodna, and the whole family left the native city.

Valentina Korotkaya, a research fellow of the Literary Museum of Maksim Bahdanovič:
Bahdanovič remembered these places. When he returned to Minsk, he walked along these streets. Due to a very modest and shy nature, Maksim did not even look inside the house. He just walked up, looked and went away.

There is one more place in Minsk that preserves the memories of Maksim Bahdanovič.

Valentina Korotkaya, a research fellow of the Literary Museum of Maksim Bahdanovič:
He was christened in the St Peter and Paul’s Cathedral in Minsk. It was one of the main churches of the city in the XVII century.

Olga Epifanovna Semova was the godmother of Maksim Bahdanovič and she played the important role in his life. The future writer showed her his first poems. The godmother took up the boy's talent immediately and subscribed to the first newspapers in Belarusian for him.

Valentina Korotkaya, a research fellow of the Literary Museum of Maksim Bahdanovič:
From Vilnius to Nizhny Novgorod, Bahdanovič got two Belarusian newspapers. Moreover, after a few years, he decided to send his works to the editor of the newspaper Nasha Niva. In 1907, Nasha Niva came out with Bahdanovič's first published work.

All his live he dreamed about returning in Minsk.  Nevertheless it happened not long before his death. Maksim Bahdanovič came back to Minsk in late October 1916. The whole Minsk intelligentsia met him. They were united under the banner of the cultural-educational club Belarusskaya Khatka.

Valentina Korotkaya, a research fellow of the Literary Museum of Maksim Bahdanovič:
The house stood at the center of the future Lenin Square. The first evening they drank tea and discussed Belarus.

At the time when Maksim Bahdanovič returned to Minsk, WWI had already been on for two years.

Minsk received wounded soldiers and refugees also gathered here. The members of the organization Belarusskaya Khatka provided the city with a huge help. Maksim Bahdanovič was among them. Maksim worked in Minsk at the local guberniya administration.

Valentina Korotkaya, a research fellow of the Literary Museum of Maksim Bahdanovič:
He worked with the documentation related to the humanitarian assistance to refugees, the issuance of clothes and food. A working day was from 9 am to 5 pm.

This work fatigued Maksim. Visits to the first public library, which was named after Pushkin, was a good relaxation for him. Here he wrote lectures about the history and the ethnography of Belarus.

Tuberculosis took a lot of energyof the young writer. The meeting with his native city allowed him to forget about the bad state of the health only for a while. Besides, here he finally met a young lady. He carried on correspondence with her for a long time.

Valentina Korotkaya, a research fellow of the Literary Museum of Maksim Bahdanovič:
She wrote interesting letters. Maksim repeatedly asked her to send a photograph, but she refused to do it. They met when Bahdanovič arrived in Minsk but they did not become a couple.

In February 1917, the writer's health began to deteriorate.Friends raised money and sent Maksim Bahdanovič for treatment to the Crimea. Unfortunately, the treatment was unsuccessful, and he died that year in Yalta.

Maksim Bahdanovič