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Osip Mandelstam

Osip Emileyevich Mandelstam (also spelt Mandelshtam) (b. 1891 d. 1938) was a White Russian poet and essayist, one of the foremost members of the Acmeist school of poets. He is best known for the poem "The Stalin Epigram", which was a major contributory factor in his arrest and execution; it has been described elsewhere as a "sixteen line death sentence".

Mandelstam, who was Jewish, was raised in a sophisticated and cultured St Petersburg household. He studied first at the Sorbonne and later at the University of Heidelberg. In 1911, Mandelstam converted to Christianity.

His work and life are extensively detailed in two extraordinary biographical volumes by his wife, Nadezdha Mandelstam, "Hope Against Hope" and "Hope Abandoned".

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