In the last days of October 1910, the Russian public was struck by the news. On the night of October 28, the world famous writer, Count Leo Tolstoy, fled from his family estate. The author of Diletant.media Anna Baklaga writes that the family drama could be the cause of this departure.
Yasnaya Polyana, which the writer received as an inheritance, was for him a place to which he always returned after the next stage of doubt and temptation. She replaced him all over Russia. What made the patient, though strong, but suffering from fainting, memory lapses, heart interruptions and veins on Tolstoy's legs to leave with all my heart the beloved manor?
This event shocked the whole society, starting with simple workers and ending with the elite. The most deafening blow, of course, experienced a family. Being an eighty-two-year-old old man, he ran away from his native home, leaving only a note to his wife, in which he asked not to try to find him. Throwing a letter in the direction of Sophia Andreevna ran to drown. Fortunately, they managed to save her. After this incident, they took away everything that would help suicide: a penknife, a heavy paperweight, and opium. She was in utter despair. The one to whom she devoted her whole life, took and left. On the Countess poured numerous accusations of escape genius. Even native children were more on the side of the father than the mother. They were the first followers of the teachings of Tolstoy. And in everything imitated him and idolized him. Sophia Andreevna was offended and offended.
Leo Tolstoy with his family
It is impossible to describe the full picture of their difficult relationship in this format. For this there are diaries, memoirs and letters. But she had served her husband selflessly for forty-eight years. The Countess bore and bore him thirteen children. In addition, she made an invaluable contribution to the writer. It was at the beginning of their family life that Tolstoy felt an incredible inspiration, thanks to which such works as War and Peace and Anna Karenina appear.
Sofya Andreevna helps her husband
No matter how tired she was, in whatever state of mind and health she was, every day she took the manuscripts of Leo Tolstoy and rewrote everything. It is impossible to count how many times she had to rewrite War and Peace. The count's wife also acted as his advisor, and sometimes as a censor. Of course, to the extent that she was allowed. She freed her husband from all worries in order to provide the necessary conditions for his creative activity. And despite this, having gone through so many stages of life together, Leo Tolstoy makes a decision to escape.
His younger daughter Sasha and her friend Feokritova helped him organize the departure from Yasnaya Polyana. Also nearby was Dr. Makovitsky, without whom the old man, Tolstoy, simply could not have done without. The escape took place at night. Leo Tolstoy clearly understood that if the countess wakes up and finds him, the scandal will not pass. This he feared most of all, because then his plan could have failed. In his diary, he wrote: “Night - poke out your eyes, stray from the path to the outhouse, get into the bowl, prickling, knock on the trees, fall, lose my hat, don't find it, get out, go home, take my hat and reach the stable with a flashlight I order to lay. Sasha, Dushan, Varya come ... I tremble, waiting for the chase. "
Leo Tolstoy was a complex controversial figure. At the end of his life, he simply became cramped in the chains of family life. He refused violence and began to preach universal brotherly love and work. His wife did not support his new way of life and thoughts, which she repented of later. But then she did not hide that it was alien to her. She simply had no time to grasp his new ideas. All her life she went either pregnant or nursing. Along with this, she herself was engaged in raising children, she trimmed them, taught reading, playing the piano. Responsibility for all the household chores, too, lay on her. Plus, care for publications and proofreading works of her husband. She had too much to admit that her victims were not only not appreciated, but also rejected as a delusion. Indeed, in search of higher ideals, Tolstoy sometimes made cardinal decisions. He was ready to give everything, but what about the family? The writer, then wanted to give up property (to give to the peasants), then renounce the copyright to the work. This meant virtually depriving the family of their livelihood. And each time Sofia Andreevna had to stand up to protect family interests. She was simply offended that all her life she had tried to live by his ideals, to be perfect for him, in his ideas, his wife, but in the end it turned out to be unnecessary and "worldly." He needed answers to questions about God and death.
Chertkov with the writer
In fact, he had long dreamed of leaving, but could not decide. Tolstoy understood that it was cruel to his wife. But when family encounters reached the limit, he no longer saw any other way out. The writer was oppressed by the atmosphere of the house, the constant scandals and attacks from his wife.
Later, the count had another close person - Vladimir Chertkov. He devoted his whole life to the newly formed teachings of Leo Tolstoy. The relationship between them was quite personal, even the writer's wife was not allowed to climb into them. Sophia Andreevna felt hurt and openly jealous. This confrontation of his wife and faithful student plagued genius. It seemed to be torn to pieces. The atmosphere in the house was becoming unbearable.
In his youth, due to the rampant mind and character, Tolstoy committed many bad deeds. Unwittingly neglecting moral values, he thereby introduced himself into a state of depression and suffering. Later, Tolstoy explained this by saying that whenever he tried to be morally good, he met contempt and ridicule. But as soon as he indulged in "nasty passions," he was praised and encouraged. He was young and was not ready to stand out from the crowd, where pride, anger and revenge were respected. In his old age, he very painfully perceived any quarrel and least of all wanted to cause someone anxiety. He became a real sage who carefully chose words when communicating, fearing to inadvertently hurt someone's feelings or offend. That is why it became increasingly difficult for him to endure the situation that prevailed in the estate.
Sofya Andreevna at Astapovo station, peeping through the window behind her husband
Once, in her diary, the countess wrote: “What happened is incomprehensible, and forever remains incomprehensible.” This journey was the last for Leo Tolstoy. On the road, he became ill, and had to get off at one of the railway stations. He spent his last days in the house of the head of the station with a diagnosis of pneumonia. Only after the injection of morphine, his wife was let in, who fell on his knees in front of him.