Taras Bulba (Тарас Бульба). Vintage Lacquer Box from Mstera. Egg tempera, papier-mache, lacquer. Circa 1970 or possibly earlier. Artist's initials. 4¾" x 4" x 1¾". In very good condition. Box has some very minor signs of wear, painting is excellent. 1 only, as shown.
Taras Bulba was the protagonist in the historical novella written and published by Nikolai Gogol in 1835. It describes the life of an old Zaporozhian Cossack and his two sons, Andriy and Ostap, who returned home from an Orthodox seminary in Kiev. The three men set out to the Zaporizhian Sich (the Zaporizhian Cossack headquarters in southern Ukraine), where they joined up with more Cossacks to go to war against the Poles, who rule all Ukraine west of the Dnieper River. In the story, Andriy betrays the Cossacks and Ostap fights alongside his father.