Abstract: Based on the analysis of the details of the description from the childhood memoirs of Afanasy Fet whom his mother taught to pray with the image of Virgin Mary, depicted in Raphael’s paintings, the article concludes that the Shenshins had a copy of Raphael’s painting “Holy Family under an Oak Tree”. The author notes that Raphael’s art inspired Afanasy Fet throughout his life, examines the poet’s lyrical masterpieces dedicated to Virgin Mary, and comes to the conclusion that Afanasy Fet’s childhood impressions had a huge impact on his oeuvre. The article emphasises that in his early works, Afanasy Fet addresses Saint Mary intimately and confidentially, as if to a protectress close to him. The author of the article believes that Afanasy Fet’s early poems, inspired by the image of the Mother of God and written at about the same time, could have been addressed to a governess whose name remains unknown (she was expelled from the house), and the tragic outcome of the poet’s love affair could have spurred him to create a short cycle and reminded of childhood impressions from Raphael’s painting.
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