Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 31 May 2020

Borodin, Aleksandr Porfir′yevichlocked

  • Robert W. Oldani


(b St Petersburg, 31 Oct/Nov 12, 1833; d St Petersburg, 15/Feb 27, 1887). Russian composer, by profession a medical doctor and professor of chemistry.

Borodin was the illegitimate son of Prince Luka Stepanovich Gedianov (more correctly Gedianishvili) and his mistress Avdot′ya Konstantinovna Antonova. As was customary in such cases, he was registered and baptized as the son of one of his father’s serfs, Porfiry Ionovich Borodin. Thus in the eyes of the law he was born a serf himself, but thanks to Gedianov’s affection for his mother, the boy’s childhood was privileged nevertheless. He spent his first five years living with his parents in his father’s apartment in St Petersburg. Then in 1839, as a means of securing a respectable future for Avdot′ya and her son after his own death, the prince arranged a marriage for her with Christian Ivanovich Kleinecke, an elderly retired army physician, and even provided a dowry in the form of a four-storey house in St Petersburg. Kleinecke died within two years of the wedding; Borodin’s father died two years after that, at the age of 69, having first freed his son from serfdom....

You do not currently have access to this article


Please login to access the full content.


Please subscribe to access the full content.

Studia musicologica Academiae scientiarum hungaricae
St Petersburg, Gosudarstvennïy Akademichesky Mariinsky Teatr, Tsentral′naya Muzïkal′naya Biblioteka
The New Grove Dictionary of Opera
Sovetskaya muzïka
Music Review
Revue musicale
Musical Times
St Petersburg, Rossiyskaya Natsional′naya Biblioteka
St Petersburg, Rossiyskiy Institut Istorii Iskusstv
Music & Letters
Musical Quarterly
Cambridge Opera Journal
Monthly Musical Record
St Petersburg, Biblioteka Instituta Russkoy Literaturï Rossiyskoy Akademii Nauk (Pushkinskiy Dom)
Opera Quarterly
Moscow, Gosudarstvennïy Tsentral′nïy Muzey Musïkal′noy Kul′turï imeni M.I. Glinki
Russkaya muzïkal 'naya gazeta