October 8, 1999

Dimitry Likhachev, a member of the Russian Academy of Sciences and literary scholar, has died in St Petersburg, aged 92. Likhachev spent four years in Stalin's labour camps after being arrested in 1928 for attending a student discussion group. Pursuing an academic career as a medieval scholar, he brought ancient and obscure works of literature to light for both intellectual and general audiences. He is widely credited with having persuaded president Boris Yeltsin to bring the remains of the murdered Romanov family back to St Petersburg for burial last year.

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