Anton Chekhov – The Teacher of Literature

Posted by Cila Warncke

Ippolit Ippolititch was taken ill with erysipelas on the head and died. For two days before his death he was unconscious and delirious, but even in his delirium he said nothing that was not perfectly well known to every one.

Only a Chekhov could create a fully-realised character out of one genius detail. In ‘The Teacher of Literature‘ it’s not the shallow protagonist who elicits sympathy, but his roommate, Ippolit Ippolititch, who “was not a talkative person; he either remained silent or talked of things which everybody knew already”

The way Chekhov creates him in a few scattered sentences is nothing short of astonishing. Read it and marvel.

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