3 July 2007
DOSTOEVSKII, Fedor Mikhailovich (1821-1881). Autograph letter signed ('Th Dostoevskii') to Nikolai Petrovich [Vagner], [St Petersburg], 7 January 76, explaining that he had not replied to an earlier letter because he was awaiting the fate of his sick son, remarking on the boy's recovery and the reaction of their daughter, and expressing his gratitude for the sympathy of their friends, 1½ pages, 8vo (split in centre fold).
This letter is in reply to Vagner's of 5 January concerning Dostoevskii's son Fedor ('Fedia'), who was severely ill suffering from scarlet fever, although the author had referred to the disease as typhus in a letter of 2 January. Dostoevskii expresses warmly his faith that the fever has broken and that the boy will live.
N.P. Vagner (1829-1907) was also a writer under the pseudonym 'Kot Murlyka', who published in the journal Svet [Light] a series of articles on spiritualism. He was a professor of zoology, first at Kazan' University, and later at St. Petersburg. The two writers met in 1875 and attended seances together. Seven letters from Dostoevskii to Vagner are recorded and eleven from Vagner to Dostoevskii.
The first page of this letter is published in F.M. Dostoevskii, The complete Collection of Works in 30 Volumes, Vol.XXIX, part 2, (Leningrad: 1986), no.603, pp.71, 231-232.
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