The Highland-Russia Connection Charity is putting on an event in Nairn Community Centre on 7th October at 8 pm to celebrate the bicentenary of the birth of Mikhail Lermontov, the celebrated Russian poet who has Scottish Ancestry. This will include some local children reading or reciting some of Lermontov's poems, some singing, dancing and instrument playing. This is a free event, and all are welcome.
2014 is the year of UK/Russian Culture designated by the British Consul.
This event is part of the national celebrations taking place in places across Scotland, including in Edinburgh, where there will be a reception sponsored by Mary Scanlon, MSP, in the Scottish parliament, to be attended by 90 people, including descendants of Mikhail Lermontov among a party of 40 Russian guests, an unveiling of a bust of Lermontov in Earlston and a Book Festival in Moffat.
Last year marked the 400th anniversary of the day when the Scot George Learmonth a gentleman from Dairsie Castle, near St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland, joined the Russian Tsar Mikhail Romanov's army in September 1613. In 1632, now known as Yurii Andreevich, he trained recruits to the cavalry before being killed in the Smolensk War against the Poles. From 1690 onwards, members of the family styled themselves Lermontov. The most famous Lermontov was Mikhail (b1814) - a much revered poet and 'dissident' who was killed in a duel in 1841. His standing in Russia was almost akin to that of Robert Burns. One of Lermontov's first well known ancestors was a mysterious 13th Century Scottish poet and prophet from Earlston, known as Thomas the Rhymer.