Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

The life story of Ivan Poddubny so unusual that many doubt its authenticity. This man, in which combined strength of Hercules and the simplicity of a child, born in the Russian Empire, won all possible titles in his homeland, in Europe and America. He was a favorite of millions, but his destiny is filled with misery and loss that they endured.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

Hercules was born 26 September (8 October new style) 1871 in the Ukrainian peasant family in the village Bogoduhovka in the region. Men in the family Poddubny were all as on selection — strong and high, but Ivan grew especially strong baby. From his mother he inherited a great ear for music, which later struck many as completely combined with the image of a strong man.

Childhood Poddubny was a tough boy started to rotten from 12 years and from a young age, worked along with adult men. When Ivan turned 20, he suddenly decided to leave farm work and went to the Crimea, in Sevastopol. Many biographers believe that such a future decision the athlete made because of unrequited love — rich neighbor gave consent to the marriage with his daughter because of poverty of the groom.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

Having a powerful physique, Ivan without problems settled in the port of Sevastopol as a loader. Some time later Poddubny moved to Feodosia, where he also got a job in sea port. The guy is quite satisfied with his profession and life and more about the former farmhands could dream of.

But that all changed one day, when Theodosius the circus of Ivan Beskaravayny. In the late XIX and the early XX century, no self-respecting circus troupe was not without strong men and wrestlers, who were the heroes of boys and the subject of sighing maidens.

In the circus Beschaving were also wrestlers, which during the views been proposed to measure strength and dexterity for everyone. Poddubny also decided to try their hand in the fight — he was sure that is not inferior to the broad-shouldered guys in tights. The first experience ended in complete failure — John lost the match.

The defeat signaled the future champion that not everything depends on strength and agility. Ivan realized that it is a science and in order to achieve results, you need a lot of hard work. Poddubny started training in his spare time, and began to regularly visit the circus wrestlers to learn their tactics.

Soon, the young fighter-Amateur again entered the arena of the circus, where he was able to defeat several well-known wrestlers. The success of Ivan did not go unnoticed and soon he was offered a job in the circus Enrico Truzzi. Thus, Poddubny's career as an athlete and a circus artist began only in 27 years.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

In the circus wrestlers not only participated in matches, they have combined several roles. Poddubny chose power stunts, for which he was created by nature itself. Crowning of the hero was out with a wooden Telegraph pole on his shoulders, which hung on the two sides 10 volunteers from the audience. Ivan just stood there with this incredible weight on his shoulders, but even went through the arena, causing a constant delight of the audience.

Poddubny quickly achieved success in the French struggle. In 1903, his reputation as a sportsman was so high that he was invited to represent Russia at the world Championships in Paris. In the competition participated 130 athletes, and the conditions were extremely stringent. Everyone who lost at least one match, immediately dropped out.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

The Russian wrestler, who was immediately dubbed "the Russian bear" defeated 11 teams. It seemed that the victory was very close, but another enemy Poddubny became a French wrestler Raoul de Bush, who had at home an incredible popularity.

This fight was so unpleasant for Ivan, which almost forced him to give up on the fight. Fights in the beginning of the XX century styles limited the variety of time and you can fight it all you want, to win one of the contenders. The Frenchman, seeing that he has neither the power nor the technical advantages over the "Russian bear", he began simply to avoid direct contact with the opponent. He just ran away from Poddubny, not allowing to make the capture.

In addition, it turned out that de Bush broke the rules and rubbed their body fat. But when Poddubny pointed this out to the judges, those did not react to this remark. In the end, the battle lasted about an hour, ended with the victory of the Frenchman with the wording of the judges for "beautiful and skilled care from sharp practices."

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

Such a judgement even angered the French public, and Poddubny so offended that he nearly ended his wrestling career. Colleagues and friends with great difficulty managed to dissuade Ivan from this step. Later, the fighter came face to face with human meanness in the sport, but felt that more philosophically.

For the organizers of major events Poddubny was a troubled party. Honest and straightforward, he did not recognize the "purchase" of fights and didn't compromise. It got to the point that enemies were plotting his murder, but, fortunately, further plans did not get.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

Today it is impossible to determine the exact number of titles that received Poddubny. At that time the Championships with high-sounding titles were in capitals and in provincial towns. Poddubny won in all competitions, but the statistics of its sports career has survived only partially. It is known that in the period from 1905 to 1908, the wrestler won the most important annual world championship held in Paris.

In 1910, Ivan Poddubny, who at that time had no equal in the world, decided to leave the sport. He acquired in his native province land and house and began to farm. But the talent for business from a great fighter was not, and his wife spent money faster than they earn. In the midst of a Civil war wife Ivana gathered her things and, taking several valuable medals of her husband, ran away.

In his personal life Poddubny had no luck. Still working in the circus, Ivan met 40-year-old Hungarian kanatohodka who took his advances, but then chose another suitor. Then the strong man nearly married the young gymnast from her troupe, but she died from the dome of the circus shortly before the scheduled wedding.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

Ivan and Maria Malanina

The first wife of Hercules was the same Antonina Kvitko-Fomenko, who didn't hesitate to spend hard earned money to Ivan, and then robbed him. In 1922 Poddubny married a second time, the mother of his colleague circus wrestler Ivan Machonin. This time he found happiness and the rest of his life with Maria Semenovna, in love and harmony.

To return to the sport Poddubny on the eve of the First world war forced the extravagance of his first wife. The wrestler again began performing in the circus and his business went up the hill. During the Civil war Ivan didn't leave your favorite things and continued to tour. Since he was out of politics and not supporting any side, it perfectly met white, red and green.

Poddubny was in good standing with the authorities and even got in 1924 permission to tour Europe and the United States. In America the rules of the fight differed significantly from European — where the fights took place with minimal restrictions, almost like fighting without rules. But Ivan Maksimovic quickly settled into his new environment and soon he received a standing ovation in Chicago, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Invincible on the Mat lifter was very naive, than have always enjoyed the many villains standing behind celebrities. In the U.S., the organizers of the fighting deceived Poddubny and not paid him substantial fees when he left home. Back in Soviet Russia titled the athlete with the victory, but no money.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

Ivan Poddubny at the Moscow stadium in 1939

After returning from overseas, Poddubny again announced retirement and decided to popularize Greco-Roman wrestling among young people. But the fighter had failed again and returned to the fights. It is known that the last time Ivan Maksimovic fought in 1941, when he was already 70 years old. It is an unprecedented fact of longevity and sports a record not broken until now.

In the late 30-ies of the merits Poddubny before the Soviet sports were assessed and the wrestler awarded the order of red banner of Labor. With the high award Poddubny never left that almost cost him his life during the German occupation.

After retirement, the athlete has chosen to live the small town of Yeisk from the sea of Azov. Years made itself felt — the old fighter was having problems with the heart. Official medicine Ivan Maksimovic is not recognized and treated folk remedies.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

When the Yeysk began to approach the German troops, honored athlete proposed to leave in the evacuation, but he refused, saying that he left to live a little and be afraid of anyone no sense. Soon Poddubny with a Soviet medal on his chest was stopped on the street by a German patrol. The invaders were so amazed to see the global legend that is not touched by man and was even allowed to walk around with the order and beyond.

Leaving Odessa, the Germans offered Poddubny to go with him so he could train in Germany, the German athletes, but the fighter refused. The Soviet authorities have carefully checked the work of the former champion in the occupied territories, but, oddly enough, did not find evidence of treason.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

In 1945 Ivan Maksimovich was awarded the title of honored master of sports, which added received in 1939 the title of honored artist of the RSFSR. But these titles did postwar life of the old athlete easier. His mighty organism required a good power supply that it was impossible to get at the card distribution system products.

The old man turned several times to the authorities, but they were allocated only one-time assistance. The last couple years of his life Ivan Maksimovic was forced to sell his medals in order not to die from hunger. In Moscow Poddubny move didn't make sense, but in a small Eysk it was no use.

Ivan Poddubny: the story of hero, a decent adventure novel

Monument to Ivan Poddubny in Yeysk

Health of Ivan Maksimovic deteriorated seriously after the way he fell on the street and broke her hip. Now Poddubny could only move on crutches. He died a great wrestler from a heart attack August 8, 1949 and buried him in the city Park of Yeysk, near the grave of the defenders of the city who died in the Great Patriotic war. After a time on the grave of the athlete appeared a stone on which was inscribed: "Here lies the Russian hero".

Fate Poddubny something similar to the fate of another great fighter of the XX century Maurice of Tie, although more abundant blows of fate and disappointments.

Keywords: Athlete | Fight Paris | The man | The phenomenon | Champ

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