"If the inner life, the ideas, the moral predicament of men matter at all in explaining the course of human history, then Turgenev's novels, especially Fathers and Sons, quite apart from their literary qualities, are as basic a document for the understanding of the Russian past and of our present as the plays of Aristophanes for the understanding of classical Athens, or Cicero's letters, or novels by Dickens or George Eliot, for the understanding of Rome and Victorian England." -Isaiah Berlin
FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH of Turgenev's masterpiece, one of the most celebrated and influential Russian novels of the nineteenth century.
"Turgenev's greatest novel, Fathers and Sons (1862)... succeeded in illustrating, with remarkable balance and profundity, the issues that divided the generations. The hero, Bazarov, is the most powerful of Turgenev's creations. A nihilist, denying all laws save those of the natural sciences, uncouth and forthright in his opinions, he is nonetheless susceptible to love and by that token doomed to unhappiness. In sociopolitical terms he represents the victory of the nongentry revolutionary intelligentsia over the gentry intelligentsia to which Turgenev belonged. In artistic terms he is a triumphant example of objective portraiture, and in the poignancy of his death he approaches tragic stature. The miracle of the novel as a whole is Turgenev's superb mastery of his theme, despite his personal hostility toward Bazarov's antiaestheticism, and his success in endowing all the characters with a quality of spontaneous life" (Britannica).
Translated by Eugene Schuyler. New York: Leypoldt and Holt, 1867. 12mo, original gilt-stamped cloth. Discreet contemporary (dated 1867) owner signature and a later bookplate on front pastedown. Very slight wear to cloth, small ink stain to bottom of text block with slight bleed onto a few leaves. An exceptionally nice copy, very rare in this condition.
Price: $6,500 .