Lermontov first began work on Demon [The Demon] in 1829 at the age of fourteen and it accompanied him, in seven successive redraftings, throughout most of his creative life, the final version being produced in 1839, two years before his death. The censor prevented its publication in Russia – it first appeared in print (in full) in Germany in 1856 and in Russia four years later.
The narrative poem has a romantic, even melodramatic plot. It opens with the hero, the eponymous Demon, flying high above the earth, bored with his never-ending task of propagating evil amongst humankind and pining for the days before he was exiled from heaven by God. As he traverses the skies above the Caucasus he sees a beautiful Georgian …
Reid, Robert. "The Demon". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 14 October 2010
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