MOSCOW, September 11 (RIA Novosti) - Personal diaries of a world-renowned Russian author Leo Tolstoy are now available online for free, marking his 186th anniversary.
"Diaries have never been published separately. They were included in the collected works issued in ninety volumes with limited circulation. Therefore, today not everybody has an idea of what Tolstoy's diaries are. But they are great. It's a continuous flow of reflections on the world and people. The main topic, however, is God, whom Tolstoy tried to apperceive," Pavel Basinskiy, member of the award panel of "Yasnaya Polyana" literature award, writer and theorist of literature, told Izvestia newspaper.
The idea to make the works by the great writer available to the public for free on the Internet belongs to the writer's great-granddaughter, Fyokla Tolstaya, who heads the development department at the Leo Tolstoy State Museum.
"When I discussed the project with my friends, many of them said: 'That's a good idea, you should make sure that no one steals it from you.' But my main objective is different: You can take whatever you like and reprint it. I guess Leo Nikolayevich would approve of what we are doing and support the free distribution of his works. His publishing activity and refusal to accept fees prove this," Tolstaya told Vedomosti last June.
Leo Tolstoy kept diaries for 64 years: he left the first note at the age of 18 and put a full stop four days before he died. 31 notebooks are extant and have been digitized. Apart from that, 55 Tolstoy's pocket-books, which contain the author's thoughts that he expanded on later, have been made digital.
The publication of the diaries comes as part of the project "All Tolstoy in One Click" that was announced by the Leo Tolstoy State Museum and ABBYY in summer 2013. The multi-volume collection of the writer's works includes fiction, diaries, letters and articles, as well as religious and philosophical texts, 46,000 pages in total – all currently being digitized by volunteers. All of the texts will be legally available for free on the website tolstoy.ru, both for online reading and for mobile download. By now 54 volumes are available for downloading.