Nishchynsky, Petro

Nishchynsky, Petro [Niščyns’kyj] (pseud: P. Baida), b 21 September 1832 in Nemenka, Lypovets county, Kyiv gubernia, d 16 March 1896 in Voroshylivka, Vinnytsia county, Podilia gubernia. (Photo: Petro Nishchynsky.) Hellenist, composer, and translator. He studied music and theory at the Kyiv Theological Academy and in 1850 moved to Athens to conduct the Russian embassy's church choir. While there he studied philology and theology at the University of Athens (MA 1856). Nishchynsky was the first to translate Sophocles' Antigone (1883) and Homer's Odyssey (1889, 1892) from the original Greek into modern Ukrainian. He also translated Slovo o polku Ihorevi into Greek, undertook a study of Greek music, and wrote a school text for Greek language study. His musical works include the dramatic scene Vechornytsi (Evening Pastimes, 1875) opening the second act of Taras Shevchenko's drama Nazar Stodolia, which features the popular ‘Zakuvala ta syva zozulia’ (The Grey Cuckoo Began Cuckooing), and arrangements of historic Ukrainian folk songs.

Dovzhenko, V. P.I. Nishchyns’kyi (Kyiv 1955)
Parkhomenko, L. Petro Nishchyns’kyi (Kyiv 1989)

Wasyl Sydorenko

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 3 (1993).]

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