Achilles Alferaki

Achilles Nikolayevich Alferaki ("Achilles" sometimes spelled Akhilles or Ahilles) (July 3, 1846, Kharkov, Russian Empire – December 27, 1919, Saint Petersburg, Soviet Union) was a Russian composer and statesman of Greek descent. His brother was Sergei Alphéraky.

Achilles Alferaki
BornJuly 3, 1846
DiedDecember 27, 1919 (aged 73)
Other namesGreek: Αχιλλέας Αλφεράκης, Russian: Алфераки, Ахиллес Николаевич
OccupationComposer · Politician


Alferaki was born in Kharkov, present-day Ukraine, to Nikos and Maria Alferakis. He spent his childhood in Taganrog, present-day Rostov Oblast, in the magnificent Alferaki Palace on Catholic Street (now Frunze Street) designed by the architect Andrei Stackenschneider.

Alferaki was educated at home before attending the historical and philological faculty at Moscow University. There he also studied music theory. In 1870, he returned to Taganrog in order to run the family business. Following the death of the city's governor Lev Kulchitsky in 1873, he served briefly as acting governor. During the 1880s, he served as mayor of Taganrog until 1888, when he moved to Saint Petersburg. There he became Chancellor of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in 1891 and later Director of the Russian Telegraph Agency.

Alferaki died in Saint Petersburg in 1919. One of his family's descendants was Anna Marly, a Russian-born French singer and songwriter, author of Chant des Partisans and a Chevalier of the Légion d'Honneur.

Mayor of Taganrog

In 1880, Alferaki was elected Mayor (городской голова) of Taganrog. During his tenure, he made many useful public affairs. He made Taganrog beautiful and clean and took part in establishing different charitable institutions. During his mayor’s period of office, the city's streets and roads were covered with cobblestones, trees were planted along the pavements, and the first boulevards were introduced. Mayor Alferaki contributed to the establishment of The Society for the Relief of the Aged Poor, established in 1883, and to development of elementary education system in the city.

At the city council meetings, Achilles Nikolaevich Alferaki introduced many new proposals. Some of them looked fantastic and wasteful for Taganrog's politicians, but some of them were realized. For example, Alferaki's proposals to erect a monument to Peter I The Great and to make a major reconstruction of Taganrog's harbor were realized.

Even his mayoralty could not make him forget his passion - the music. He took part in the activity of Taganrog's Music and Dramatic Society. The first music classes and a symphony orchestra, directed by famous hand-master and composer Václav Suk opened in Taganrog.


Music lovers, like Alferaki himself helped Taganrog become known as one of the most music-loving cities in the South of Russia. In 1880, when the Greek composer lived in Taganrog in his mansion on the Catholic Street, he gathered the whole beau monde of the city. Achilles Alferaki was also a talented artist. A large collection of caricatures is now kept at the Taganrog Museum of Local Lore and History and at the Literary Museum named after Chekhov. With these rare sketches and drawings, we have a chance of seeing the people, who lived in Taganrog some hundred years ago through the eyes of a contemporary, getting the spirit of parties and balls of that time.

Alferaki devoted much of his time to music. In the former capital of the Russian Empire he wrote more than 100 romances, compositions and two operas St. John's Eve and The Erl King.

External links and references

Government offices
Preceded by
Lev Kultshitskiy
Governors of Taganrog
Succeeded by
Johan Hampus Furuhjelm
1919 in music

This is a list of notable events in music that took place in the year 1919.

Alferaki Palace

Alferaki Palace is a museum in Taganrog, Russia, originally the home of the wealthy merchant Nikolay Alferaki. It was built in 1848 by the architect Andrei Stackenschneider on Frunze Street (formerly Katolicheskaya), in downtown Taganrog.

The building is decorated with a portal featuring four Corinthian columns and stucco moulding in the baroque style. A suite of rooms was created inside, along with a spacious music hall with a ceiling-painting.

December 27

December 27 is the 361st day of the year (362nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are four days remaining until the end of the year.

Greek diaspora

The Greek diaspora, Hellenic diaspora or Omogenia (Greek: Ομογένεια) refers to the communities of Greek people living outside Greece, Cyprus which are the traditional Greek homelands, Albania, North Macedonia, parts of the Balkans, southern Russia, Ukraine, Asia Minor, the region of Pontus, Eastern Anatolia, Georgia, the South Caucasus, Egypt, southern Italy and Cargèse in Corsica. The term also refers to communities newly established by Greek migration outside these traditional areas during the 20th and 21st centuries.

History of Taganrog

The southern Russian city of Taganrog began as one of Russia's first planned cities under Peter the Great. To protect the newly conquered Sea of Azov region, the Russians opened a naval base there in 1698 and a city and seaport were built. However, after the Turkish victory in the war of 1710–1711, Taganrog city and port were demolished prior to handover to the Turks.

After further conflicts the place finally became part of Russia under Catherine the Great following the Russo-Turkish War of 1768–74. The re-founded city was populated by Greek colonists. The oldest extant church in the city, St. Nicholas Church, was built in 1778 and the Bell of Chersonesos was originally cast for it. Much further development took place under the city governor Balthasar von Campenhausen in the early 19th century. Tsar Alexander I had a palace in the city and died there in 1825.

During the Crimean War Taganrog came under siege by the English and French in 1855, but was not captured. The playwright Nestor Kukolnik, a resident of Taganrog, had a part in the city's further development; it grew to be one of the leading industrial and commercial centres of Southern Russia, while the Taganrog Theatre contributed to its cultural life.

Taganrog was General Denikin's headquarters during the Russian Civil War. After the Soviet victory it joined Ukrainian SSR, transferring to Russian SFSR in 1924. Under German occupation in World War II between 1941 and 1943, thousands of residents, particularly Jews, were murdered by the SS. Through the Soviet and post-Soviet periods Taganrog has retained its importance as an industrial and technological centre.

Ippolit Vogak

Ippolit Konstantinovich Vogak (sometimes spelled Wogack, Russian: Вогак, Ипполит Константинович, 30 August 1829 – 16 July 1889) was an Imperial Russian Navy admiral and the 17th and last governor of Taganrog .

Vogak graduated from Cadet Corps in 1847, served in the Baltic Fleet, and was a participant of the Crimean War. He was promoted to the rank of captain-lieutenant in 1862, captain second rank in 1870, and captain first rank in 1873. He was then promoted to the rank of rear-admiral in 1883.

Vogak commanded the battleships Novgorod and Petr Velikiy in 1874-1880, as well as imperial yacht of the House of Romanov Livadia. He was a junior flag-officer (младший флагман) of the Black Sea Fleet in 1884-1885 and junior flag-officer of the Baltic Fleet in 1887-1889.

From 1885 to 1887, he served as Governor of Taganrog.

Vogak died on 16 July 1889 in Saint Petersburg and was buried at the Smolenskoe Lutheran Cemetery.

Johan Hampus Furuhjelm

Johan Hampus Furuhjelm, (Russian: Фуругельм, Иван Васильевич) (March 11, 1821 – September 21, 1909) was a Finnish-Russian vice-admiral and explorer, commander of the Russian Baltic Fleet, Governor of the Russian Far East, Taganrog and Russian America.

July 3

July 3 is the 184th day of the year (185th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 181 days remaining until the end of the year.

Lev Kulchitsky

Lev Yakovlevich Kulchitsky (Russian: Лев Яковлевич Кульчицкий, 4 March [O.S. 20 February] 1813 – 7 December [O.S. 25 November] 1873) was a Russian rear-admiral and the 13th governor of Taganrog, member of the Admiralty since 1856.

Graduated from Cadet Corps in 1831. Served in the Black Sea Fleet, promoted to captain-lieutenant in 1849, captain second rank since 1855, captain first rank since 1858, rear-admiral since 1866. During Crimean War Lev Kulchitskiy commanded the paddle frigate Gromonosets.

In 1860 he was appointed chairman of the military trial at Nikolaev port. In 1863 appointed chief of the Konstantinovskaya Navy Station in Tsemes Bay. Kulchitsky served as Governor of Taganrog from 1868 to 1873. After his death he was interred in the crypt of The All-Saints Church in Taganrog at the Taganrog Old Cemetery

List of people from Taganrog

This is a list of famous people who have lived in Taganrog. Please add new people and also add the dates they lived in Taganrog, if known.

Peter I Monument in Taganrog

The Peter I Monument in Taganrog is a monument to Peter I of Russia in Taganrog.

Sergei Alphéraky

Sergei Nikolaevich Alphéraky (1850–1918) (sometimes Alphéraki or Alferaki) was a Russian ornithologist and entomologist who specialised in Lepidoptera.

Sergei Alphéraky was born into the noble Greek family of Alferakis and was the brother of composer Achilles Alferaki. His father Nikos Alferakis owned the Alferaki Palace in Taganrog. Sergei studied at Moscow University (1867–1869), then with Otto Staudinger in Dresden (1871–1873). On his return to Russia he worked on the Lepidoptera of the Taganrog, Rostov-on-Don region. He also collected in the North Caucasus. After that he devoted himself to the insects, especially Lepidoptera, of Central Asia. He worked on the Lepidoptera collected by Nikolai Przhevalsky in Tibet held by the Zoological Museum of the Russian Academy of Science and those collected by Grigorij Nikolaevich Potanin in China and Mongolia in the same institution. Later he studied the collections made by Alfred Otto Herz in Amur, Korea and Kamchatka, and those of Nicholas Mikhailovich Romanoff (Grand Duke Nicholas Mikhailovich), a friend from his two years at Moscow University. He was an honorary member of both the Russian Entomological Society and the Royal Entomological Society of London.


Taganrog (Russian: Таганрог, IPA: [təɡɐnˈrok]) is a port city in Rostov Oblast, Russia, on the north shore of the Taganrog Bay in the Sea of Azov, several kilometers west of the mouth of the Don River. As of the 2010 Census, its population was 257,681.

Taganrog Old Cemetery

The Taganrog Old Cemetery is a historic cemetery on the outskirts of Taganrog's historical downtown district that was closed for new burials in 1971.

Václav Suk

Václav Suk, or Váša Suk, or Vyacheslav Suk (also Vyacheslav Ivanovich, Вячеслав Иванович Сук, or Vjačeslav Ivanovič Suk) (16 November 1861 – 12 January 1933) was a Czech-born Russian violinist, conductor and composer.

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