A bogatyr’ (legendary medieval hero), one of the main characters of the Russian by liny (folk epic). Along with Il’ia Muromets, Dobrynia Nikitich stands at his post and defends the Russian land from foreign invasion. The by liny portray him as powerful, honest, straightforward, and faithful in friendship and love. He is educated and “polite-so-polite and knows how to speak and how to conduct himself.” Dobrynia Nikitich parleys with foreign kings, with wandering minstrels, and with the incensed Il’ia Muromets. The by liny about Dobrynia Nikitich originated in Kievan Rus’ of the 12th century and continued to evolve during the Tatar yoke and later under the Muscovite centralized state.
REFERENCESLoboda, A. M. Russkii bogatyrskii epos. Kiev, 1896.
Skaftymov, A. Poetika i genezis bylin: Ocherki. Mo scow-Saratov, 1924.
Astakhova, A. M. Byliny: Itogi i problemy izycheniia. Moscow-Leningrad, 1966.