"Little book" – a manuscript collection of Taras Shevchenko poems, created in 1846 – 1850 years. This manuscript has no title, the name "Little book" given by researchers.
While in exile, Shevchenko against the king's decree did not stop writing poetry. He wrote them in a makeshift notebooks of small format that could hide from the authorities. In late 1849 – early 1850, while in Orenburg and with relative ease from the soldier's drill, Shevchenko began to rewrite verses clean in notebook size 6.3 × 9.8 cm. He wrote 27 such books.
Warned arrest (which occurred on April 23, 1850), Shevchenko gave this little book to Karl Gern. Rough autographs from which the texts were copied to the "Little book" not found – perhaps Shevchenko managed to destroy them.
Gern was able to return the manuscript Shevchenko probably in early 1858, when the poet was in Nizhny Novgorod. At this time (January – February 1858) was perhaps made most of the corrections in the text, some texts crossed. These corrections reflect the next phase of Shevchenko's work on verses. February 21, 1858 Shevchenko began to rewrite verses from the "Little book" to "Greater book".
When binding "Little book" some notebooks were mixed, resulting in chronological order works disturbed. This confusion was later fixed by continuous pagination.
Today manuscript "Little book" stored at the Institute of Literature (Department of Manuscripts. Fund 1 (Shevchenko), № 71). In 1963, 1966 and 1984 it was published phototypic way. Our scans made with the publication in 1984, not from the original.