42 pages 1 hour read

Anton Chekhov

The Seagull

Fiction | Play | Adult | Published in 1895

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Important Quotes

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 “Your soul and mine, by way of contrast, don’t meet at all.”

(Act I, Page 2)

From the beginning of the play, Masha is hopelessly in love with Konstantin, who does not love her back. Here, Medvedenko, her future husband, acknowledges that she does not love him. This sets up one of the many mismatched pairs of lovers that dominate the story, and it establishes the structure of some characters going after want they want (Konstantin, Nina), and the outcome being different from what they expected, while others (Masha, Trigorin, and Sorin) long for something more out of life, but never do anything to change their circumstances. These dilemmas introduce The Consequences of Disillusionment, which will be one of the play’s most prominent themes.

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“She’s taken against the performance just because Nina’s acting and might take the fancy of her writer fellow.”

(Act I, Page 4)

This passage foreshadows the rivalry between Nina and Arkadina in Act I of the play. There will be a battle between the younger woman and the older woman for both the affections of Trigorin and for the right to be the leading lady on the stage.