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News

“60 Years in Love and Harmony”

08.07.2019

Annually on June 8, Russia celebrates Day of Family, Love and Fidelity.  Family is one of the main values of humanity.

Mikhail Alexandrovich and Mariya Petrovna Sholokhov lived together 60 years in love and harmony and for all made a good example of family relations. Pyotr Ivanovich Mayatsky, the First Secretary of the Vyoshensky, then Bokovsky District CPSU Committee, who many years communicated with M.A.Sholokhov and his big family, said: “The family of M.A.Sholokhov set for all of us an example of exceptional trust in each other, respect, and most importantly, genuine, human and direct relationship.

This year is the 95th anniversary of wedding of Mikhail Alexandrovich and Mariya Petrovna Sholokhov in the Bukanovskaya Church of the Intercession of the Holy Virgin. The wedding blessed them for their long and happy family life. On that day, January 11, 1924, the newlyweds registered their marriage in the Podtyolkov Registry Office (Stanitsa Kumylzhenskaya the Khopyor District of the Tsaritsyn Region).

Mikhail and Mariya got acquainted back in 1922, in Stanitsa Bukanovskaya. After completing a course of food inspectors in Rostov-on-Don, young Mikhail Sholokhov was sent to work there. It was there that his life brought him to meet with Mariya Gromoslavskaya, a daughter of the former stanitsa ataman.By that time, she had finished her 7-year study at the Ust - Medveditskaya diocesan school. When the Civil War began, all the students were allowed to go home. Later Mariya  worked as primary school teacher, then she was an employee of the Bukanovsky executive committee.

Often communicating at work, the young people knew each other well. Sholokhov appreciated the business qualities of Mary, her unusual beauty and determined character. That acquaintance grew into a great and strong feeling. In autumn of 1922, when M.A.Sholokhov left for Moscow to continue his education, Mariya Petrovna promised to wait for him. Late in 1923, having come from the capital Mikhail made a proposal to Mariya. When married, they were inseparable until the end of their days.

After their wedding the newlyweds went to Moscow, and soon the first short stories by Sholokhov were published. Mariya Petrovna copied his first works and later typed them.

From 1937, M.A.Sholokhov was engaged in public work – he was elected Deputy of the USSR Supreme Soviet. And again Mariya Petrovna was by her husband. She became his helpmate in sorting the plenty of correspondence delivered daily and typing the answers for the letters.

We can’t speak about Mariya Petrovna and Mikhail Alexandrovich separately, as these people were always and everywhere together. “They seem as if tied up with a string,”– S.M. Sholokhova recalls. – Our mother always lived our father’s life, she had no separate life of hers, she was dissolved in him. She was either to copy something for our father, or type, or go hunting and fishing with him… He did not go anywhere without her. He would say to her: “Let’s go hunting…”

 

When Mariya Petrovna was said to about her merits in the career of the writer – her husband, she answered: “Well, what is my merit? We simply understood each other. Where it was better for him to write, there we were to live.  He said once: “How nice, Marusya, that we are the same”.

Caring and loving Mariya Petrovna until the last moment was always with her husband, and this eased his pain. She remembered: “We are sitting in the study opposite each other. When I am only about to rise: “Marusya, where are you going? Sit, please, don't go”. And she did not go. Until his last breath she stayed about him. On February 21, 1984, at 1.40 a.m., Mikhail Alexandrovich took her hands and kissed them.So he said goodbye to her forever. He closed his eyes and after some minutes he had gone.

After her husband’s death Mariya Petrovna lived nearly eight years more. “But she was quietly going out like a candle”, – Mariya Mikhailovna Sholokhova told. – “For a long time she was sitting by the window, where from my father’s grave was visible. She remembered his words: “You see, Marusya, we have lived 60 years and have never divorced”. Now they lie side by side”.

A faded rose made of bronze is mounted into the slab on the tomb of Maria Petrovna.It is not by chance.  Mikhail Alexandrovich liked to give fresh flowers, especially roses, to his wife.It gave them joy. According to the family members, Mikhail Alexandrovich got up very early, went to the garden, cut the most beautiful rose, put it to the glass of water and placed it on the bedside table near Mariya Petrovna sleeping... And in the last year of his life, when M.A.Sholokhov was hospitalized in the Moscow clinic, he remembered the important date – the 60th anniversary of their living together. On the celebrated day, January 11, 1984, he presented his Marusya with the last bouquet of roses.  

Natalya Kirsanova