By Leo Tolstoy

'An vital and long-overdue contribution to our wisdom of Tolstoy.' D. M. Thomas, Sunday Times

Volume 1 of Tolstoy's Diaries covers the years 1847-1894 and used to be meticulously edited by way of R.F. Christian in an effort to replicate Tolstoy's preoccupations as a author (his perspectives on his personal paintings and that of others), his improvement as someone and as a philosopher, and his attitudes to modern social difficulties, rural existence, industrialisation, schooling, and later, to non secular and religious questions.
Christian introduces every one interval with a quick and informative precis of the most biographical info of Tolstoy's existence. the result's a different portrait of a good author within the variegation of his daily existence.

'As an image of the turbulent Russian international which Tolstoy inhabited those diaries are incomparable - the uncooked stuff now not but processed into art.' Anthony Burgess

'A version of scholarship, the most very important books to be released in fresh years.' A. N. Wilson, Spectator

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Sixteen April, Starogladkovskaya Haven’t written my diary for a very long time. Having arrived at Starogladkovskaya on 1 April, I’ve endured to stay an analogous method as I lived at the excursion – like a gambler who’s afraid to count number how a lot is chalked up opposed to him. misplaced a hundred silver roubles without problems to Sulimovsky. Went unsuc­cessfully to Chervlennaya to get a scientific certificates. desired to renounce; yet a fake feel of disgrace at returning to Russia whereas nonetheless a cadet is easily restraining me. I’ll watch for promoting, that is infrequently most probably – I’m already used to mess ups of every kind. In Novogladkovskaya, if I didn’t sin at the Tuesday of Easter Week, it was once in simple terms simply because God kept me. i need to come again into my previous rut of solitude, orderliness, and stable and healthy strategies and occupations. aid me, God! I’m now experiencing for the 1st time an extremely unhappy and painful feeling – remorse at a early life wasted with out revenue or excitement. and that i believe that my early life has handed. It’s time to bid it farewell. 18 April bought up early, learn anything by means of Avdeyev known as The Flying Dragon,7 and wrote quite good. The plan of my tale is barely now starting to take transparent form. i feel the tale will be solid if i will be able to be able to get around its crude facet skilfully. nonetheless I’ve spent loads of time idly via now not getting used to paintings. I’ve simply had an evidence approximately funds issues – disagreeable as constantly – with my brother. After dinner I went to work out Yepishka and talked to Salamanida; her breasts have gotten gruesome, yet I nonetheless like her greatly. notwithstanding, whatever younger has a robust impact on me; each woman’s bare foot, it kind of feels to me, belongs to a good looks. 19 April (Easter Day) Didn’t visit church, and having damaged my quick, ate a few kulich8 which were blessed. Did not anything all day. performed prisoners’ base9 with a few officials and younger lads; despatched Vanyushka to Pakunka with out good fortune. Didn’t get inebriated, nor did my brother, which happy me a great deal. Alexeyev used to be rather good-natured. 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 April Spent these types of days virtually an identical means because the first: performed prisoners’ base, popular the wenches and received inebriated as soon as at Zhukevich’s. comprehensive Christmas evening in tough. I’ll begin correcting it. this present day was once a truly disagreeable day. It began with my having diarrhoea within the morning, then not anything got here from Kizlyar, then a horse was once stolen. My current needs are: to get an army pass and a fee instant, and for either my tales to achieve success. […] four, five, 6, 7 could not anything distinctive. bought 40 roubles for the tale by means of put up. Wrote rather a lot at the present time, altered and shortened a few of it and gave the tale its ultimate shape. i need to have a girl. Sensuality doesn’t provide me a moment’s peace. eight, nine, 10, eleven, 12, thirteen, 14, 15 might I’ve performed not anything those seven days. Went to Kasatka’s – endured to drink even if i wished to forestall numerous instances. My brother left at the present time. I’ve got letters from Nekrasov, Seryozha and Masha – all approximately my writing, and flattering to my vanity.

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