Tolstoy, Aleksey Konstantinovich (tŏlˈstoi, Rus. əlyĭksyāˈ kənstəntyēˈnəvĭch təlstoiˈ) [key], 1817–75, Russian poet, dramatist, and novelist. He was a distant cousin of Leo Tolstoy. Together with two cousins he wrote nonsense verse and humorous works under the pseudonym Kozma Prutkov. These works are primarily satire directed against government bureaucracy. Tolstoy also wrote narrative lyrics and epics in both romantic and humorous veins. Prince Serebryany (1863, tr. A Prince of Outlaws, 1927) is a historical novel set in the time of Ivan the Terrible. He also treated this period in a trilogy of historical dramas in blank verse, The Death of Ivan the Terrible (1865, tr. 1926), Tsar Fyodor Ivanovitch (1868, tr. 1922), and Tsar Boris (1870). Tolstoy's works reflect his vitality and erudition.
See study by M. Dalton (1972).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.