Some say Chekhov was the founder of the modern short story. Although he is probably best know for his plays like “Uncle Vanya”, “The Cherry Orchard”, “The Three Sisters”…
Here is what Virginia Woolf says about Chekhov’s unique style of storytelling: “But is it the end, we ask? We have rather the feeling that we have overrun our signals; or it is as if a tune had stopped short without the expected chords to close it. These stories are inconclusive, we say, and proceed to frame a criticism based upon the assumption that stories ought to conclude in a way that we recognise. In so doing we raise the question of our own fitness as readers. Where the tune is familiar and the end emphatic—lovers united, villains discomfited, intrigues exposed—as it is in most Victorian fiction, we can scarcely go wrong, but where the tune is unfamiliar and the end a note of interrogation or merely the information that they went on talking, as it is in Chekov, we need a very daring and alert sense of literature to make us hear the tune, and in particular those last notes which complete the harmony.”
And, Ernest Hemingway declared “The Lady with the Dog” one of the best stories ever written.
I hope you enjoy these two stories by Anton Chekhov!