|Pushkin monument in St.Petersburg|
Today is Alexander Pushkin's birthday, widely marked in Russia as the day of national culture.
EU-Russia summit was held in Saint-Petersburg. President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso made a short statement (text) at the joint press-conference at the end of the summit. In the statement he quoted from Pushkin, generating pleased murmur in the audience. This is the phrase from Barroso's statement:
As the most famous Russian poet, Alexander Pushkin, who studied, lived and died in Saint Petersburg, once wrote: “we can try and fail, but we should not fail to try”.
It's quite possible that assistants found the quote for the President who wanted to strike a warm note with the hosts. He did, but I doubt that any of the Russians in the hall were able to recognize it as genuinely Pushkin's.
Can anyone help?
Photo of Barroso: eppjfficial.
Photo of the Pushkin monument in Arts Square (ploschad' Iskusstv) by George Shuklin.