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Taras Bulba is an opera in four acts by the Ukrainian composer Mykola Lysenko. The libretto was written by Mykhailo Starytsky (the composer's cousin) after the novel Taras Bulba by Nikolai Gogol.
Gogol's novel tells the story of an old Zaporozhian Cossack, Taras Bulba, and his two sons, Andriy and Ostap. Taras' sons studied at the Kiev Academy and return home. The three men set out on a journey to Zaporizhian Sich located in Southern Ukraine, where they join other Cossacks and go to war against Poland.
The work is non-fictional in nature, in that the main character is based on several historical personalities, and other characters are not as exaggerated or grotesque as was common in Gogol's later fiction. This story can be understood in the context of the Romantic nationalism movement in literature, which developed around a historical ethnic culture which meets the Romantic ideal.