Shamrai, Ahapii

Shamrai, Ahapii [Шамрай, Агапій; Šamraj, Ahapij], b 2 October 1896 in Myropillia, Sudzha county, Kursk gubernia, d 7 April 1952 in Kyiv. Literary scholar and literary critic. He graduated from Kharkiv University in 1921 and then taught Ukrainian literary history at the Kharkiv Institute of People's Education and contributed to the work of the Taras Shevchenko Scientific Research Institute in Kharkiv. He lived in internal exile in 1933–44 and headed chairs of Western European literature in Izhevsk, Ferhan, and Perm in RSFSR. In 1944, he returned to Ukraine and was a professor at Kyiv University. He was one of the leading representatives of the new school in literary studies. He wrote a study of the history of Ukrainian literature, Ukraïns'ka literatura: Styslyi ohliad (Ukrainian literature: A Concise Survey, 1927, 1928); edited Kharkivs'ki poety 30–40-ykh rokiv XIX stolittia (Kharkiv Poets of the 1830s and 1840s, 1930); and wrote a study of Ukrainian romanticism, Pershyi tvir novoï ukraïns'koï literatury (The First Work of the New Ukrainian Literature, 1951), and the posthumously published Natalka Poltavka I. Kotliarevs'koho (Ivan Kotliarevsky’s ‘Natalka Poltavka,’ 1955). He also wrote studies of the works of Hryhorii Kvitka-Osnovianenko, Mykhailo Kotsiubynsky, Taras Shevchenko, Oleksa Storozhenko, and Stepan Vasylchenko. Western writers whose works he examined include William Shakespeare, Victor Hugo, and E.T.A. Hoffmann. A selection of his works was published posthumously, Vybrani statti i doslidzhennia (Selected Articles and Studies, 1963).

Ivan Koshelivets

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 4 (1993).]

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