The Lady with the Dog by Anton Chekov

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"The Lady With the Dog," by Anton Chekhov

"The Lady With the Dog" is a short story that gives an overview of an adulterous affair. The main character, Dmitri Gurov, is dissatisfied with his wife and has been consistently unfaithful to her. While vacationing in Yalta, he becomes enamored by a young woman that has a Pomeranian in tow, and successfully seduces her. Instead of enjoying a short-term fling, Gurov finds himself falling in love, even though he heartily attempts to dismiss this fact. He begins to grow found of the woman's naivety and youth, and pains to meet her again after she is called home by her husband.

An interesting aside to this story is how Chekov uses the weather to help shade the mood of the narrative. The couple's romance builds in Yalta during the summer, which is demonstrated by the line: "It was sultry indoors…" When Gurov is separated from Anna and begins longing for his new flame, it is during the bitter winter months in Moscow. A fine example of the Moscow winter is found in the line: "Gurov was Moscow born; he arrived in Moscow on a fine frosty day, and when he had put on his fur coat and warm gloves, and walked along Petrovka, and when on Saturday evening he heard the ringing of the bells, his recent trip and the places he had seen lost all charm for him."

The story ends with the couples reuniting and arriving to the cusp of making future plans to be together. For me, this ending is satisfactory. It allows the reader to use their imagination to see the future for Gurov and Anna. Even so, I might add a fifth chapter to the story. This chapter would be one where the lovers set about making plots to rid themselves of their current spouses. Markov would surely hire some Communist Party thugs to off his wife in a grizzly murder plot, while Anna would use the traditional black widow's tool of husband removal: poison (likely arsenic). The couple would then be hunted down by the relentless Czarist authorities, and be publicly hung...
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