The Godson

A son was born to a poor peasant. He rejoiced and went to a neighbour to ask him to stand as godfather to the boy. The neighbour refused. He did not want to be godfather to a poor...

The Cossacks

Dmitri Olenin, a privileged disenchanted nobleman joins the army as a cadet, in the hopes of escaping the superficiality of his daily life. In his quest to find completeness, he...

The Empty Drum

Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910) began writing when he was stationed in the Caucasus in the Russian army. After fighting in the Crimean war, he settled in St. Petersburg, where he wrote a...

A Confession

Leo Tolstoy's "A Confession," written in 1882 shortly after a life-altering spiritual crisis, is a brutally sincere reflection on life, morality, and the nature of faith. Tolstoy...

Two Hussars

"He is a regular dare-devil, you know: a gambler, a duellist, a seducer, but a jewel of an hussar - a real jewel."A handsome young hussar rides through a small town, seduces a...

The Prisoner In The Caucassus

"He tried to rise, but two ill-savoured Tartars were already sitting on him and binding his hands behind his back."Two Russian soldier are kidnapped by their rivals while serving...

Ilyas

A story of a successful farmer Ilyas who grew into one of the wealthiest in the area only to loose it all through series of bad accidents. He finds his happiness however only...

Emelian And The Empty Drum

Emelian was a labourer and worked for a master. He was walking through a field one day on his way to work, when a frog hopped in front of him and he just missed crushing it by...

What Is Art?

Tolstoy shares his views about the imprecision of general opinions on art, the time, effort, public funds, and public respect spent on art and artists. The difficulty of meaning...

Hadji Murad

The story follows a separatist guerrilla Murat who falls out with his own commander and eventually sides with the Imperial Russian forces in hope of saving his family. Tolstoy...

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