Seven Entries from Anton Chekhov’s Note-Books

Mankind has conceived history as a series of battles; hitherto it has considered fighting as the main thing in life.

Solomon made a great mistake when he asked for wisdom.

Ordinary hypocrites pretend to be doves; political and literary hypocrites pretend to be eagles. But don’t be disconcerted by their aquiline appearance. They are not eagles, but rats or dogs.

Those who are more stupid and more dirty than we are called the people. The administration classifies the population into taxpayers and non-taxpayers. But neither classification will do; we are all the people and all the best we are doing is the people’s work.

If the Prince of Monaco has a roulette table, surely convicts may play at cards.

Aliosha: “My mind, mother, is weakened by illness and I am now like a child: now I pray to God, now I cry, now I am happy.”

Why did Hamlet trouble about ghosts after death, when life itself is haunted by ghosts so much more terrible?

Notations from Anton Chekhov’s Note-books.


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