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Author To Publish Unknown Swift Text

Published: August 12, 2005 (Issue # 1095)


Previously unpublished erotic passages that where cut out of the first edition of Gullivers Travels in 1726 are being released in Russia this week, a St. Petersburg publisher says.

Neonilla Samukhina, head of the citys Soitology Institute, has previously published illustrated works on sex in the office, outdoor sex and a prize-winning edition of the Decameron.

Her The Erotic Adventures of Lemuel Gulliver, will be released in Moscow bookstores over this weekend.

The book features the hero of 18th century Irish author Jonathan Swifts famous satire in physical encounters with tiny Lilliputs who are only 15 centimeters tall and in Brobdingnag, which is inhabited by 20-meter giants.

Experts say the work is likely a fake.

Samukhina denies having commissioned the work herself, but admits to not being an expert and that she could be deceived.

The book launch has echoes of the fake Hitler diaries scandal and of the issuing of a new Harry Potter tome.

Samukhina says the work is a translation of original material written by Swift. Its foreword contains an angry complaint purportedly written by the satirist about the mayhem inflicted on his work by the removal of the erotic passages, which were an integral part of the original work.

Samukhina said she had bought the work at great expense, had gone to great lengths to ensure its veracity, and fears that it could be stolen. The manuscript on which the erotic adventures is based is locked in a Geneva bank vault and no copies exist, she said.

Copyright has expired on the work and if she were to print it in English, everyone could copy it to her financial loss, she added.

She intends to donate the manuscript to Britains Albert and Victoria Museum, which houses the first edition of Gullivers Travels of 1726 with Swifts own corrections, in 20 years, after her expenses for buying the manuscript, paying for professional examinations and storage are recovered.

She is especially wary of showing it in Russia, which has a notorious reputation when it comes to intellectual property. Despite taking measures to maintain secrecy when it was published, news of the work and copies of some pages had leaked out before the launch, she said.

There is no confidentiality in this country, she added.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Saturday, Aug. 30


Break out the tweed and channel your inner Englishman during the English Hunt Picnic this afternoon organized by the Bagmut stables from Krasny Bor in the Leningrad Oblast. Equestrian stunts, English archery and classic hunting fashion will all be available to visitors hoping to live like the characters in Downton Abbey if only for a day. Tickets for the event cost 7,900 rubles ($219.40).


Bookworms will have their chance to swap out well-read classics for something new for their bookshelves at Knigovorot, a free book exchange that will be held in the Yusupov Garden on Sadovaya Ulitsa today. Come for the chance to get a new book or take the opportunity to discuss the literary merits of your favorite authors with fellow fans.



Sunday, Aug. 31


The Neva Delta International Blues Festival wraps up this afternoon on Vasilevsky Island with a concert featuring not only some of Russias best blues bands but international stars as well. Admission is free for all three days of the festival, which begins on Aug. 29, and the shows starting at 5 p.m. each day.



Monday, Sept. 1


Today marks the beginning of Lermontov-Fest, a fall festival celebrating the life of one of Russias most remarkable poets who, in a fate eerily similar to Pushkins, was killed in a duel at the age of 26. Organized by the Lermontov Library System, the next several months will see art exhibitions, concerts and public lectures focusing on the Lermontovs short yet prolific career. Check the Lermontov Library Systems website for more details.



Tuesday, Sept. 2


Join expats and practice your Russian during the Russian Clubs weekly meetings every Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. The club is free to participate in although you need to be a registered member of Couchsurfing.



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