The Works of Leo Tolstoi: One Volume Edition
Santrauka: Leo Tolstoy One of the great masters of the 19th-century novel, Tolstoy created a sweeping epic in War and Peace which folds together huge events in history and politics with the emotional lives of individuals. But it was his deeply spiritual outlook that made him an icon.. In 1844 he entered the University of Kazan, but left before completing a degree. He spent the following years in a round of drinking, gambling and womanizing, until weary of his idle existence he joined an artillery regiment in the Crimean war and after the defense of Sevastopol wrote The Sevastopol Sketches (1855-6), establishing his literary reputation. In 1856 Tolstoy spent some time mixing with the literati in St Petersburg before traveling abroad and then settling at Yasnaya Polyana, where he involved himself in the running of peasant schools and the emancipation of the serfs. Tolstoy managed his vast estates and wrote both his great novels, War and Peace (1869) and Anna Karenina (1877). During the 1870s he underwent a spiritual crisis, the moral and religious ideas that had dogged him coming to the fore. A Confession (1879–82) marked an outward change in his life and works; he became an extreme rationalist and moralist, after 1880 he rejected church and state, indicted the demands of flesh, and denounced private property. His teachings earned him numerous followers in Russia and abroad. In 1910 at the age of eighty-two he fled from home "leaving this worldly life in order to live out my last days in peace and solitude;" he died some days later at the station master's house at Astapovo.