"Hug and cry": how did the expression popular among modern youth appear

The expression "hug and cry" is used today mainly by young people when they want to ironically pity someone or emphasize the worthlessness of a person or even a thing. One might think that it appeared with the easy submission of millennials, who have significantly enriched the great and mighty in recent years. But it turns out that this expression is very old, and the youth just got it "out of mothballs." How did it appear in Russian?

"Hug and cry": how did the expression popular among modern youth appear

"Yesterday they took a new employee to the department, and he is such a specialist - to hug and cry." This expression can be applied to anything, from a person, to food and even the weather. It was used, however, not as often as now, in the 90s and "zero", and the great Russian poet Afanasy Afanasievich Fet gave this phrase to people back in the 19th century.

"Hug and cry": how did the expression popular among modern youth appear

Yes, "hug and cry" is nothing but a line from his poem "The Night Shone". In order to understand the context in which the author uses the expression, we will give it in full:

As we can see, there is no irony in these lines, and the poem is quite serious, even sad. And Afanasy Fet could not joke with such things, because in 1872 the 57-year-old poet dedicated him to the love of his life – Maria Lazic.

"Hug and cry": how did the expression popular among modern youth appear

This woman was not only love, but also Fet's incurable pain. The poet met Maria Lazich, the daughter of a bankrupt retired general, in his younger years, when after graduating from university he went to military service in one of the garrisons near Kherson.

Romantic feelings arose between the young people, but Fet, unexpectedly for everyone, broke off relations with Lazich. It turned out that the former student, not having enough money even to support himself, decided not to get involved with a penniless girl with whom he had no future.

Fet left Kherson and immediately after that stopped writing to Maria and answering her letters. At the same time, the poet's biographers claim that the man suffered a lot from parting with his beloved, but pragmatism prevailed over feelings. Soon Fet married Maria Botkina, the heiress of a large fortune. The poet invested the money received from his wife in an estate in the Mtsensk district and began to lead a measured life of a wealthy landowner.

"Hug and cry": how did the expression popular among modern youth appear

As for Maria Lazic, her fate was tragic. Once she touched a lamp with the hem of a lush muslin dress and it instantly flared up. The woman, burning like a torch, ran out onto the balcony, and then up the steps into the garden, where she fainted from the pain and fell. Maria, who was badly burned, could not be saved, and after four days of torment, she died. Her last sentence was "It's not his fault, but I..."

Maria died before the marriage of Athanasius Fet to another. The news of the death of a former lover shocked the poet. He considered himself the indirect culprit of the incident, reproached him for cowardice, pettiness and cruelty. Biographers of the Russian poet believe that from that moment until the last days, Fet devoted all his love lyrics to the memory of Maria Lazich. The sad poem "The night Shone" was no exception, which gave us the popular expression "hug and cry".

Keywords: History | Celebrities | Youth | Love | Tragedy | Poet | Legacy

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