1. Anton Pavlovich Chekhov (1860-1904), widely regarded as Russia’s greatest playwright, suffered through a tumultuous childhood. Not only did he live in poverty, but he also endured abuse from his tyrannical father. Of his abusive father, Chekhov once wrote, “He used to thrash me with a birch, pull my ears, hit me on the head, and every morning when I woke up, my first thought was whether he would beat me that day.”
2. His father constructed a new house for the family, yet did not budget the project wisely. As a result, he rounded up his family and fled to Moscow to evade bankruptcy and prison.
3. Chekhov earned high marks throughout school. His academic performance earned him a scholarship and acceptance at I.M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University in 1879. He became a physician in 1884 and treated many of his patients for free, opting to support himself financially through his writing.
4. Of the relationship between his medical practice and writing endeavors, Chekhov said, “Medicine is my lawful wife, and literature is my mistress. When I get fed up with one, I spend the night with the other.”
5. After the success of Ivanov, Chekhov wrote a play entitled, The Wood Demon. The play was far too long and not very compelling. After reworking the story, The Wood Demon was converted into Uncle Vanya, and it soon turned into one of his most popular pieces.
6. Chekhov was a man with a large sexual appetite. He was intimate with many women and was frequently involved in love triangles. He did not settle down until he married his wife, Olga Knipper, in 1901. The couple’s marriage only lasted three years due to Chekhov’s death.
7. By observing topography, fossils, and geography, Leonardo concluded that creation’s classical Biblical timeline needed to be questioned. He reasoned the planet would need to be much older than initially thought for the Earth’s various geographical features to form.
8. Many regard The Lady with the Dog as Chekhov’s greatest short story ever written. The tale follows a 40-year-old man, Dmitri Gurov, and his extramarital affair with a young woman named Anna Sergeyevna.
9. His brother, Nikolai Chekhov—a talented creator in his own right—died of tuberculosis at 31. Following his death, Chekhov knew he had to dedicate his life to a cause. He selected prison reform and raised awareness concerning the horrid conditions within Russia’s penal colony, Sakhalin.
10. Chekhov died from tuberculosis on July 2, 1904, at the age of 44.