Who, then? Leo Nikolaevich Tolstoy, a great Russian mind.
Look at his photo to the left and listen to his voice reading from “Every Day Thoughts”. Leo Tolstoy’s Voice
It was very hard to find his family background even on-line site:”All About Leo Tolstoy”. So I did a research myself starting with the Tolstoy family back from the Petrov times in Russia. Tolstoy then was an ambassador, served to the Government loyally, but when the things on the political arena turned from bad to worse, Tolstoy was imprisoned in a Turkish prison, when the atmosphere began to warm up, he was released. Many a time he begged the Russian tsar Peter the Great about resigning, many a time his petition was denied. He suffered for his good service for the Tsar and Mother Russia. As a reward the Count title and an estate was granted to him and his family in generations to come.
The Tolstoy character had shaped through ages: brilliant service for the rulers and extravagant personal features.
Here he is, Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910), born at the estate “Yasnaya Polyana”, located just 200 kilometers south of Moscow.
Look at the photo show “The Tolstoy Museum”: Tolstoy Museum
Yasnaya Polyana is a phenomenon of Russia’s historic and cultural life. With its authentic buildings, surrounded by picturesque forests,orchards, and parks, it is a typical Russian estate, which will give you an insight into every-day life and traditions of the 19th and 20th centuries.
The State Memorial and National Preserve “Museum-Estate of Leo Tolstoy “Yasnaya Polyana” invites everybody to commemorate the 100 years since he passed away. In 2008 there was his 180 years anniversary of his birthday. Plenty of events are organized here and there. The Doukhobor people whom he helped to immigrate to Canada are building a new bakery adjacent to the Yasnaya Polyna estate. Director Michael Hoffman and a beautiful crew prepared a movie “The Last Station”, a handsome-looking piece about the final year of Leo Tolstoy’s life.
To the right is the photo from this film, played at the Eau Claire Movie Theatre last Thursday.
Watch “The Last Station trailer”, please: The Last Station trailer
Tolstoy, played by Canada/s master thespian Christopher Plummer who is torn between the noble sentiment to sign his copyright for the mankind and the wishes of his loving, mercurial wife, Countess Sofya (Helen Mirren) who wants to keep the rewards of his legacy in the family. Her Sofya is charismatic, intense and often outlandish.
Based on a novel by Jay Parini, “The Last Station” is rich in history, philosophy and at times humor.
Staged in Germany with sponsorship and guidance from Konchalovsky, a play has been well done and at the, believe or not, I am, a Russian soul myself, could not help tears rolling upon my cheeks because of compassion and sympathy for Sofya Andreevna. Have your own opinion, go and watch this movie.
Back to analyzing Tolstoy’s personality, with his passive non-resistance of the Tolstoyan movement, his COMMUNE, not COMMUNITY life style where the motto was “Live in Labor and Freedom” I would like to say: Tolstoy was and will be Brilliant and Extravagant”.
Watch the Chronicles about Leo Tolstoy: Chronicles About Leo Tolstoy
We will remember his words: “LOVE is LIFE. All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love…”