Exile Years in Mikhaylovskoe and Return to St. Petersburg
The next two years, from August 1824 to August 1826 he spent at Mikhaylovskoe in exile and under surveillance. However unpleasant Pushkin may have found his virtual imprisonment in the village, he continued his literary productiveness there. During 1824 and 1825 at Mikhaylovskoe he finished "The Gypsies," wrote Boris Godunov, "Graf Nulin" and the second chapter of Eugene Onegin.
When the Decembrist Uprising took place in Petersburg on December 14, 1825, Pushkin, still in Mikhaylovskoe, was not a participant. But he soon learned that he was implicated, for all the Decembrists had copies of his early political poems. He destroyed his papers that might be dangerous for himself or others.
In late spring of 1826, he sent the Tsar a petition that he be released from exile. After an investigation that showed Pushkin had been behaving himself, he was summoned to leave immediately for an audience with Nicholas I. On September 8, still grimy from the road, he was taken in to see Nicholas I. At the end of the interview, Pushkin was jubilant that he was now released from exile and that Nicholas I had undertaken to be the personal censor of his works.
Pushkin thought that he would be free to travel as he wished, that he could freely participate in the publication of journals, and that he would be totally free of censorship, except in cases which he himself might consider questionable and wish to refer to his royal censor. He soon found out otherwise. Count Benkendorf, Chief of Gendarmes, let Pushkin know that without advance permission he was not to make any trip, participate in any journal, or publish -- or even read in literary circles -- any work. He gradually discovered that he had to account for every word and action, like a naughty child or a parolee. Several times he was questioned by the police about poems he had written. Implicated by the State Council, he was summoned by Moscow police officials about poems he was suspected to be the author, “Gavriliada” being one of them.