Boris Godunov

by Alexsander Pushkin

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Palace of the Patriarch

PATRIARCH, ABBOT of the Chudov Monastery

   PATRIARCH. And he has run away, Father Abbot?

   ABBOT. He has run away, holy sovereign, now three days ago.

   PATRIARCH. Accursed rascal! What is his origin?

   ABBOT. Of the family of the Otrepievs, of the lower nobility
   of Galicia; in his youth he took the tonsure, no one
   knows where, lived at Suzdal, in the Ephimievsky
   monastery, departed from there, wandered to various
   convents, finally arrived at my Chudov fraternity;
   but I, seeing that he was still young and inexperienced,
   entrusted him at the outset to Father Pimen, an old man,
   kind and humble. And he was very learned, read our
   chronicle, composed canons for the holy brethren; but,
   to be sure, instruction was not given to him from the
   Lord God—

   PATRIARCH. Ah, those learned fellows! What a thing to
   say, "I shall be tsar in Moscow." Ah, he is a vessel of
   the devil! However, it is no use even to report to the
   tsar about this; why disquiet our father sovereign?
   It will be enough to give information about his flight to
   the Secretary Smirnov or the Secretary Ephimiev.
   What a heresy: "I shall be tsar in Moscow!"...
   Catch, catch the fawning villain, and send him to
   Solovetsky to perpetual penance. But this—is it not
   heresy, Father Abbot?

   ABBOT. Heresy, holy Patriarch; downright heresy.


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