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At a Glance
This collection is arranged in four series. Selected material cataloged; remainder arranged.
Scope and Contents
The collection contains Teffi's correspondence, manuscripts, documents, photographs, drawings, sheet music, and printed material. The correspondence, primarily from the period 1928-1952, includes a large body of letters from Teffi to her daughter Valerii︠a︡ Grabovskai︠a︡ and numerous letters to Teffi from many prominent persons, including Mark Aldanov, Ivan Bunin, Boris Panteleĭmonov, Grigoriĭ Aleksinskiĭ, Aleksandr Amfiteatrov, and Konstantin Simonov. The manuscripts consist primarily of handwritten and typescript copies of Teffi's essays and humorous sketches. Also included are several of her lyrics, as well as original poems by the writers Lolliĭ Lv́ov, Aleksandr Ot︠s︡up, Sergeĭ Potresov and others.
The collection also includes around 100 photographs, mainly of Teffi, but also of others, including Boris Panteleĭmonov and Ekaterina Kuskova. The printed material consists almost exclusively of books and clippings. Included are books by Teffi published between 1910 and 1952, and a large collection of clippings of her writings from the Russian émigré press as well as translations of her works published in non-Russian newspapers, journals and magazines.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Restrictions on Access
This collection is located on-site.
This collection has no restrictions.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Nadezhda Aleksandrovna Teffi Papers; Box and Folder (if known); Bakhmeteff Archive, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Libraries.
Mikhail Aleksandrovich Drizo Papers: contains a manuscript of Teffi's "Nichego Podobnogo" with Drizo's drawings of its characters.
Ekaterina Nikolaevna Roshchina-Insarova Papers: contains manuscripts of poems and a play scenario by Teffi.
Il'ia Grigor'evich Savchenko Papers: contains manuscripts of 5 stories and 1 essay by Teffi, which were published in "Poslednie Novosti" in the 1930s.
Andreĭ Sedykh papers: Contains Seydkh's correspondence (61 letters) with Teffi, as well as some short manuscripts by Teffi. At the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University.
Soiuz Russkikh Pisatelei i Zhurnalistov v Parizhe Records: contains correspondence with Teffi, primarily related to the union's organizational subsidies.
Vladimir Aleksandrovich Vereshchagin Papers: contains a poem manuscript by Teffi.
Boris Konstantinovich Zaitsev Papers: contains extensive correspondence (101 letters) with Teffi.
The following collections in the Bakhmeteff Archive contain Teffi's correspondence: Aldanov; Bacherac; Baikalov; Chekhov Publishing House; Drizo; Evreinov; Kagan; Karpovich; Oks; Pleshcheev; A. A. Poliakov; Potresov; Roshchina-Insarova; Sablin; Shervashidze; Shpolianskii; Tyrkova-Williams; Zeeler; Zenzinov.
Teffi's correspondence from these collections is also available on microfilm #96-2051-1.
Existence and Location of Copies
Teffi's correspondence from various BAR collections is on microfilm #96-2051-1.
Also available on microfilm (reels #96-2038 and #96-2039):
General correspondence from box 2 (O-Z; Fragments; Unidentified; Teffi to various persons; Teffi to Valeriia Grabovskaia (daughter); Letters neither to nor from Teffi; Grabovskaia, V. to V. and V. Vereshchagin; Various persons to Valeriia Grabovskaia; Tamara (housekeeper) to Valeriia Grabovskaia; With Chekhov Publishing House; Correspondence regarding aid to Teffi (1939-1943); Correspondence re: commemorative evening, 1953 June 11; Correspondence re. and other financial matters)
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Papers: Source of acquisition--Valeriia Vladislavovna Grabovskaia. Method of acquisition--Gift; Date of acquisition--1953.
Publications based on the Nadezhda Aleksandrovna Teffi Papers: Teffi, Nadezhda. "Sinie vtorniki." Novyi Zhurnal, No. 180 (1990): pp. 116-120. Manuscript from box 3. Correspondence between N. Teffi and V. and I. Bunin, (preface by Edith Haber, commentaries by Richard Davies and Edith Haber), DIASPORA III, St. Petersburg, 2002
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Papers Accessioned 1953.
Papers Processed 12/--/81.
This collection was intellectually arranged into six series at the same time the PDF finding aid was converted to EAD. None of the material was physically rearranged. The biographical note was also updated to include a more accurate birth date (1872 rather than 1875), as well as information about Teffi's marriage and son. Finally, related materials notes were added.
2020-04-22 PDF finding aid converted to EAD and biographical note revised by CLB and KSD.
History / Biographical Note
Teffi, pseudonym of Nadezhda Aleksandrovna Lokhvitskaia, married name Buchinskaia (Тэффи, Надежда Александровна Лохвицкая, в замужестве Бучинская; 1872-1952), was a prominent Russian writer and poet best known for her humorous sketches. Born in St. Petersburg, she lived in Paris for the majority of her career, from 1919 until her death.
Her father was a prominent professor of law and a well-known lawyer, publisher and editor of the newspaper Sudebnyi vestnik; her older sister, Mirra Lokhvitskaia-Zhiber, was an accomplished poet.
Nadezhda Lokhvitskaia married the lawyer Vladislav Buchinsky, her father's student, in 1892. The couple had two daughters and a son before they separated in 1900. One daughter, Helena Buczynska, pursued an acting career in Poland; and the other, Valeriia Grabovskaia, was a translator who resided in England. Their son, Janek, died during World War I.
Teffi began her literary career in pre-revolutionary Russia as a regular contributor of stories, essays, poems and plays to the daily Russkoe slovo and to the literary journal Satirikon. The first collection of her works, entitled Sem' ognei, was published in St. Petersburg in 1910. In 1919, Teffi emigrated to Paris, where she pursued a prolific writing career publishing a continuous stream of essays, poems, songs, plays and the humorous sketches for which she became best known. Her pieces appeared regularly in the Russian émigré press, and frequently also in translation in non-Russian newspapers, magazines and journals. Her literary output has been estimated to include approximately 700 stories and 26 plays, collected in about 30 volumes, published over the course of 52 years.
Teffi died in Paris on October 6, 1952.