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THE CHERRY ORCHARD

by: Anton Chekhov


All Russia is our orchard.

Just think, Anya. Your grandfather, your great-grandfather and all your ancestors owned serfs, they owned human souls. Don't you see that from every cherry-tree in the orchard, from every leaf and every trunk, men and women are gazing at you? if we're to start living in the present isn't it abundantly clear that we've first got to redeem our past and make a clean break with it? And we can only redeem it by suffering and getting down to real work for a change.

My love is like a stone tied round my neck; it's dragging me down to the bottom; but I love my stone. I can't live without it.

A hungry dog believes in nothing but meat.

Dear and most respected bookcase! I welcome your existence, which has for over one hundred years been devoted to the radiant ideals of goodness and justice.

The cherry orchard is now mine!... I bought the estate on which my grandfather and father were slaves, where they were not even permitted in the kitchen.

Don't laugh at me. If my father and grandfather could only rise from their graves and see what happened, see how their Yermolay -- Yermolay who was always being beaten, who could hardly write his name and ran round barefoot in the winter -- how this same Yermolay bought this estate, the most beautiful estate in the world.

You look boldly ahead; isn't it only that you don't see or divine anything terrible in the future; because life is still hidden from your young eyes.

Perhaps man has a hundred senses, and when he dies the five senses that we know perish with him, and the other ninety-five remain alive . . . Everything that is unattainable for us now will one day be near and clear . . . But we must work.

Life has gone by as if I never lived.

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