Mikhail Lermontov (1814-41) is one of the major figures in the history of Russian literature who, together with Pushkin and Gogol, set the parameters for the ascendancy of Russian realism and its principal medium – the novel – during the second half of the nineteenth century. Yet, while occupying this position, he is also a profoundly paradoxical figure. He was primarily a romantic poet whose Byronism far outstripped that of his predecessor Pushkin. He died in his twenty-seventh year and, even allowing for a remarkable precocity, came nowhere near to realising his full creative potential. Gogol was impressed with him and reportedly predicted that “Lermontov the prose writer will be greater than Lermontov the poet”. …
Reid, Robert. "Mikhail Lermontov". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 26 October 2005; last revised 30 November -1.
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=2697, accessed 18 April 2015.]