A Rule Of Life

Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev 1818 (Oryol, Oryol Governorate) – 1883 ( Bougival, Seine-et-Oise)



If you want to annoy an opponent thoroughly, and even to harm him,' said a crafty old knave to me, 'you reproach him with the very defect or vice you are conscious of in yourself. Be indignant ... and reproach him!

    'To begin with, it will set others thinking you have not that vice.

    'In the second place, your indignation may well be sincere.... You can turn to account the pricks of your own conscience.

    If you, for instance, are a turncoat, reproach your opponent with having no convictions!

    'If you are yourself slavish at heart, tell him reproachfully that he is slavish ... the slave of civilisation, of Europe, of Socialism!'

    'One might even say, the slave of anti-slavishness,' I suggested.

    'You might even do that,' assented the cunning knave.

    February 1878.
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Submitted by halel on July 15, 2020

Modified on March 05, 2023

39 sec read
14

Quick analysis:

Scheme X X X X X X X
Characters 787
Words 135
Stanzas 7
Stanza Lengths 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1

Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev

Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev (English: ; Russian: Иван Сергеевич Тургенев, tr. Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev, IPA: [ɪˈvan sʲɪrˈɡʲeɪvʲɪtɕ tʊrˈɡʲenʲɪf]; November 9 [O. S. October 28] 1818 – September 3, 1883) was a Russian novelist, short story writer, poet, playwright, translator and popularizer of Russian literature in the West. His first major publication, a short story collection entitled A Sportsman's Sketches (1852), was a milestone of Russian realism, and his novel Fathers and Sons (1862) is regarded as one of the major works of 19th-century fiction.  more…

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