Di contrib



 Latest contributions 
Home Improvement tips 
 Jenny's letter
 Nsta Research into 'Gap year style' volunteering for the over 50s - what can we learn?       Debora
Getting right the work/life balance
RSS Feed for latest articles

From Russia with (not very much) Love

From even a casual study of eighteenth century Russian history and reading their novels it seems that it was the usual practice to give illegitimate children a truncated version of their natural father’s surname, often by cutting off the first syllable thus, the illegitimate child of someone called for example, Mr Bezukhov, would be called Mr Zukhov or, his daughter Miss Zukhova.
Having this in mind when I was in St. Petersburg a couple of years ago, I asked our guide, Ludmilla, let’s say, who, incidentally, had been selected to translate for certain heads of state when visiting Mr Gorbachev: “If someone called Mr Rasputin had fathered an illegitimate child what name would that child have been given? And would not their descendants still have the same surname?” Smiling, Ludmilla said: ‘If we continue this conversation, Julian, we’ll both end up in the Lubyanka!’
Julian Nokes
8th February 2009


Julian Nokes, 19/02/2009