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Poetry or prose? Russian literary dispute ends in stabbing death

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[January 31, 2014]  MOSCOW (Reuters)  The lesson from a stabbing death in Russia: Alcohol and literature can be a lethal mix.

A former schoolteacher killed his friend after a drunken argument over which is superior, poetry or prose, investigators in the Sverdlovsk region said on Wednesday.

"The literary dispute soon grew into a banal conflict, on the basis of which the 53-year-old admirer of poetry killed his opponent with the help of a knife," the regional branch of the federal Investigative Committee said in a statement.

The suspect fled his home in the town of Irbit, where the 67-year-old victim was killed after the argument on January 20, and hid at another friend's house in a nearby village before he was found and detained, it said.

The killing came four months after an argument over the theories of 18th century German philosopher Immanuel Kant ended in a man being shot in a grocery store in southern Russia.

(Writing by Steve Gutterman; editing by Hugh Lawson)

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