Instead of the Winged Genius, the symbol of St Petersburg University will be a monument to Count Sergei Uvarov, Minister of Public Education during the reign of Nicholas I. Sota drew attention to this. The Genius Monument was opened in 2007. On June 26, 2023, Rector of St Petersburg University Nikolai Kropachev suggested replacing it with a monument to Uvarov. The proposal was unanimously supported by the Academic Council of the university. Shortly before this, the governor of St. Petersburg, Alexander Beglov, offered to honor the merits of Uvarov.
Sergey Uvarov is the author of The Theory of Official Nationality, the state ideology of the Russian Empire during the reign of Nicholas I. It is based on conservative views on education, science, literature, and the expression “Orthodoxy, Autocracy, Nationality” became the motto as an antithesis to the motto of the Great French Revolution “Freedom , equality, brotherhood.
“Deepening into consideration of the subject and seeking those principles that constitute the property of Russia (and every land, every nation has such a Palladium), it becomes clear that such principles, without which Russia cannot prosper, grow stronger, live, we have three main ones:
- Orthodox faith.
This is how he described the theory in a report to the emperor.
At the same time, a fanatical admirer of the absolute monarchy, Uvarov was a homosexual who appointed Prince Dondukov-Korsakov as his deputy at the Academy, Sota notes. Pushkin dedicated an epigram to this:
At the Academy of Sciences
Prince Dunduk is in session.
They say it's not right
Dunduk is such an honor;
Why is he sitting?
Because there is an ass.