By Elena Bormotova: Today marks the 135th birth anniversary of Ivan Lutsevich, known in Belarus as Yanka Kupala, the country’s first national poet whose works are translated today into tens of languages.
The Yanka Kupala Museum holds about 600 manuscripts of the writer, including the latest one — an unfinished ballad. In the early 1920s, Kupala handed over his archives to the National Library, but the collections were burnt during the war-time evacuation. Some of the manuscripts can be found abroad — for instance, the poem Kurgan is kept in London.
The poet was born in Vyazynka in the Kupala Night, hence his pen-name. The genealogy of the Lutevich family is known thanks to Yanka Kupala’s grandfather Anufry, who recreated the family’s history for several generations.