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Boris Blankoff, Paris, 1916Boris Blankoff in a hospital

He was a famous surgeon and president of the Belgian Orthopedic Society, and before that, during World War I, a volunteer of the Russian Expeditionary Corps, who fought on the fields of Champagne.

Boris Osipovich Blankoff was called “Chekhov’s last doctor”, and he treated – without compensation – both his compatriots and Belgian Resistance fighters – Soviet soldiers and officers who had escaped from Nazi concentration camps.

In 1945, he was one of the founders of the Union of Russian Patriots, the largest organization of our compatriots in Belgium.

His son Jean Borisovich Blankoff jokingly called himself a “traitor” – because he did not become a doctor or a mining engineer, as many in his family, but, having a passion for the Russian language, devoted his entire life to the study and promotion of Russian culture, history and literature.

Thanks to him, a longtime participant in the Novgorod archaeological expedition, the world learned about birch-bark letters and the high culture of the Russian Middle Ages. But Jean Borisovich considered his main work to be the translation into French of the Old Russian chanson de geste – the famous Tale of Igor’s Campaign (XII century), which took ten years of his life.

And there were also studies of the works of Chingiz Aitmatov, Georgian authors – together with his wife Goldie, and much more….

Boris Blankoff, Paris, 1916Boris Blankoff in a hospital

Together with the scientist’s daughter Mrs. Raissa Blankoff  and friends of Jean Borisovitch we will talk about these remarkable people and other members of their family at our soirée on February 15 at 19.00.

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