The statue of poet Alexander Pushkin beside Odesa's Pushkin Museum

©Pavlo Fedykovych/Lonely Planet

Pushkin Museum


This is where Russia's greatest poet, Alexander Pushkin, spent his first weeks in Odesa after being exiled from St Petersburg in 1823 by the tsar for mischievous epigrams. Governor Vorontsov subsequently humiliated the writer with petty administrative jobs and it took only 13 months, an affair with Vorontsov's wife, a simultaneous affair with someone else's wife and more epigrams for Pushkin to be thrown out of Odesa too.

Somehow, he still found time while in town to finish the poem 'The Bakhchysaray Fountain', write the first chapter of Eugene Onegin, and scribble the notes and moaning letters found in this humble museum, along with Freemason artefacts and pictures of women Pushkin charmed during his Odesa stint.

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