Through much of the twentieth century, Anna Akhmatova's poetry gave voice
to the deepest yearnings and struggles of the Russian people. Born in
1889, she survived these upheavals, refusing to abandon either Russia
or her craft despite vicious attacks on her name and censorship of her
work. When committing poems to paper threatened to cause her arrest, a
few close friends faithfully memorised her lines. By the time she died
in 1966, Anna Akhmatova was recognized as one of the world's great poets.