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Boris Godunov recounts the tragic conflict between Tsar Boris and the pretender Dimitri. Following the death of Ivan the Terrible, Boris Godunov became regent for the feeble-minded Tsar Fyodor, the heir to whose throne, the boy-prince Dimitri, died mysteriously in 1591. It was widely rumoured that Boris had murdered him, and when a renegade monk later appeared claiming to be Dimitri, he rapidly became a focus for revolt.
The four other plays in this volume belong to Pushkin's Little Tragedies. They are A Feast in Time of Plague, The Miserly Knight, Mozart and Salieri and The Stone Guest.