The Best Anton Chekhov quotes

Anton Chekhov quotes thumbnail

When most people think of Russian writers, Leo Tolstoy or Ivan Turgenev are the first names that come to mind. But Anton Chekhov, who was born in 1860 and died in 1904, is perhaps the greatest Russian writer of all time. This blog post will provide a brief quotes compilation of this amazing author.

We are glad to present you the best Happiness, Work, Love, Human Beings, Nature, Life, World quotes from Anton Chekhov, and much more.


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About Anton Chekhov

birth of the author

29 January 1860

death of the author

15 July 1904

occupation of the author

Physician, Short Story Writer, Playwright

country of the author


college of the author

Alma Mater:
First Moscow State Medical University

award of the author

Notable Awards:
Pushkin Prize


Even in Siberia there is happiness. — Anton Chekhov

Men are made for happiness, and anyone who is completely happy has a right to say to himself: ‘I am doing God’s will on earth. — Anton Chekhov

Happiness does not await us all. One needn’t be a prophet to say that there will be more grief and pain than serenity and money. That is why we must hang on to one another. — Anton Chekhov

Oh, dreams! In one night, lying with one’s eyes shut, one may sometimes live through more than ten years of happiness. — Anton Chekhov

even in siberia there is happiness Anton Chekhov quote

The happy man only feels at ease because the unhappy bear their burden in silence. Without this silence, happiness would be impossible. — Anton Chekhov

Only entropy comes easy. — Anton Chekhov


If my life can ever be of any use to you, come and take it. — Anton Chekhov

When one has no real life, one lives by mirages. It’s still better than nothing. — Anton Chekhov

I’m in mourning for my life. — Anton Chekhov

if my life can ever be of any use to you come and take it Anton Chekhov quote

Please, understand that your life is bad and dreary! — Anton Chekhov

We should show life neither as it is, nor as it should be, but as we see it in our dreams. — Anton Chekhov

It is easy to be a philosopher in academia, but it is very difficult to be a philosopher in life. — Anton Chekhov

If ever my life can be of any use to you, come and claim it. — Anton Chekhov


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You ask me what life is. That’s like asking what a carrot is. A carrot is a carrot, and there’s nothing more to know. — Anton Chekhov

when one has no real life one lives by mirages it s still better than nothing Anton Chekhov quote

We learn about life not from plusses alone, but from minuses as well. — Anton Chekhov

There are in life conjunctions of circumstances when the reproach that we are not Voltaires is least of all appropriate. — Anton Chekhov

Exquisite nature, daydreams, and music say one thing, real life another. — Anton Chekhov

How did Anton Chekhov become famous?

By the time he completed medical school , Chekhov had been writing fiction for several years—mainly anecdotes for humour magazines.
His first work in a leading literary review, “Steppe”, depicted a journey in the Ukraine as seen through a child’s eyes.

The more simply we look at ticklish questions, the more placid will be our lives and relationships. — Anton Chekhov

If our life has a meaning, an aim, it has nothing to do with our personal happiness, but something wiser and greater. — Anton Chekhov

i m in mourning for my life Anton Chekhov quote

I think that it would be less difficult to live eternally than to be deprived of sleep throughout life. — Anton Chekhov

It’s better to live down a scandal than to ruin one’s life. — Anton Chekhov

An expansive life, one not constrained by four walls, requires as well an expansive pocket. — Anton Chekhov

You must trust and believe in people or life becomes impossible. — Anton Chekhov

How easy it is, Doctor, to be a philosopher on paper, and how difficult in real life! — Anton Chekhov

please understand that your life is bad and dreary Anton Chekhov quote

When asked, ‘Why do you always wear black?’, he said, ‘I am mourning for my life. — Anton Chekhov

Every person lives his real, most interesting life under the cover of secrecy. — Anton Chekhov

Life is given only once, and one wants to live it boldly, with full conscious and beauty. — Anton Chekhov

Medviedenko Why do you always wear mourning? MASHA I dress in black to match my life. I am unhappy. — Anton Chekhov

Life on earth is inconceivable without trees. — Anton Chekhov

we should show life neither as it is nor as it should be but as we see it in our dreams Anton Chekhov quote

In short stories it is better to say not enough than to say too much, because, because––I don’t know why. — Anton Chekhov


God’s world is a good place. The one thing not good in it is we. How little justice and humility there is in us. How little we understand true patriotism! — Anton Chekhov

Nothing lulls and inebriates like money; when you have a lot, the world seems a better place than it actually is. — Anton Chekhov

The world is, of course, nothing but our conception of it. — Anton Chekhov

It’s very hard, feeling that you’re no more than a piece of unwanted furniture in this world. — Anton Chekhov

the world is of course nothing but our conception of it Anton Chekhov quote

There are a great many opinions in this world, and a good half of them are professed by people who have never been in trouble.’ (The Mill) — Anton Chekhov

The world perishes not from bandits and fires, but from hatred, hostility, and all these petty squabbles. — Anton Chekhov

There are no small number of people in this world who, solitary by nature, always try to go back into their shell like a hermit crab or a snail. — Anton Chekhov

When you live on cash, you understand the limits of the world around which you navigate each day. Credit leads into a desert with invisible boundaries. — Anton Chekhov

Existence is tedious, anyway. — Anton Chekhov

People who lead a lonely existence always have something on their minds that they are eager to talk about. — Anton Chekhov


My holy of holies is the human body. — Anton Chekhov

My thoughts about human happiness, for some peculiar reason, had always been tinged with a certain sadness. — Anton Chekhov

There should be more sincerity and heart in human relations, more silence and simplicity in our interactions. Be rude when you’re angry, laugh when something is funny, and answer when you’re asked. — Anton Chekhov

What must human beings be, to destroy what they can never create? — Anton Chekhov

my holy of holies is the human body Anton Chekhov quote

In nature a repulsive caterpillar turns into a lovely butterfly. But with human beings it is the other way round: a lovely butterfly turns into a repulsive caterpillar. — Anton Chekhov

Write about this man who, drop by drop, squeezes the slave’s blood out of himself until he wakes one day to find the blood of a real human being––not a slave’s––coursing through his veins. — Anton Chekhov


Only one who loves can remember so well. — Anton Chekhov

Love is a scandal of the personal sort. — Anton Chekhov

Try to reason about love, and you will lose your reason. — Anton Chekhov

only one who loves can remember so well Anton Chekhov quote

Love, friendship and respect do not unite people as much as a common hatred for something. — Anton Chekhov

Redundant Thematics

In Anton Chekhov Statements


A person loves to talk about his illnesses although that is the least interesting part of his life. — Anton Chekhov

What was Anton Chekhov’s legacy?

Although Chekhov is best known for his plays, some critics think that his stories are even more creative and significant.

Chekhov’s elusive, superficially guileless style of writing—in which what is left unsaid seems much more important than what is said—has defied effective analysis by literary critics and effective imitation by other creative writers


Reason and justice tell me there’s more love for humanity in electricity and steam than in chastity and vegetarianism. — Anton Chekhov

There is something beautiful, touching and poetic when one person loves more than the other, and the other is indifferent. — Anton Chekhov

Nothing better forges a bond of love, friendship or respect than common hatred toward something. — Anton Chekhov

love is a scandal of the personal sort Anton Chekhov quote

By poeticizing love, we imagine in those we love virtues that they often do not possess; this then becomes the source of constant mistakes and constant distress. — Anton Chekhov

A man can deceive his fiancee or his mistress as much as he likes and, in the eyes of a woman he loves, an ass may pass for a philosopher. But a daughter is a different matter. — Anton Chekhov

My holy of holies is the human body, health, intelligence, talent, inspiration, love, and absolute freedom––freedom from violence and falsehood, no matter how the last two manifest themselves. — Anton Chekhov

I’ve never been in love. I’ve dreamt of it day and night, but my heart is like a fine piano no one can play because the key is lost. — Anton Chekhov

Perhaps the feelings that we experience when we are in love represent a normal state. Being in love shows a person who he should be. — Anton Chekhov

try to reason about love and you will lose your reason Anton Chekhov quote

My love is like a stone tied round my neck; it’s dragging me down to the bottom; but I love my stone. I can’t live without it. — Anton Chekhov

To fear love is to fear life, and those whose fear life are already three parts dead… — Anton Chekhov

If you wish women to love you be original; I know a man who used to wear felt boots summer and winter & women fell in love with him. — Anton Chekhov

I still lack a political, religious and philosophical world view–I change it every month–and so I’ll have to limit myself to descriptions of how my heroes love, marry, give birth, die, and how they speak. — Anton Chekhov


How unbearable at times are people who are happy, people for whom everything works out. — Anton Chekhov

how unbearable at times are people who are happy people for whom everything works out Anton Chekhov quote

One had better not rush, otherwise dung comes out rather than creative work. — Anton Chekhov

You only have to start a job of work to realize how few decent, honest folk there are about. — Anton Chekhov

Isolation in creative work is an onerous thing. Better to have negative criticism than nothing at all. — Anton Chekhov

If one wants to lead a good life, A HUMAN LIFE, one must work. — Anton Chekhov

Why is Anton Chekhov so influential?

Chekhov captured life in the Russia of his time by using a deceptively simple technique devoid of obtrusive literary devices.
He is regarded as the outstanding representative of late 19th-century Russian realism.

Though already celebrated by the Russian literary public before his death, Chekhov did not become internationally famous until after World War I. .

If you want to work on your art, work on your life. — Anton Chekhov

one had better not rush otherwise dung comes out rather than creative work Anton Chekhov quote

I divide all literary works into two categories: Those I like and those I don’t like. No other criterion exists for me. — Anton Chekhov

A writer should not so much write as embroider on paper; the work should be painstaking, laborious. — Anton Chekhov

The teacher must be an actor, an artist,passionately in love with his work. — Anton Chekhov

If you can’t distinguish people from lap–dogs, you shouldn’t undertake philanthropic work. — Anton Chekhov

You are right in demanding that an artist should take an intelligent attitude to his work, but you confuse two things: solving a problem and stating a problem correctly. — Anton Chekhov

if one wants to lead a good life a human life one must work Anton Chekhov quote

There will come a time when everybody will know why, for what purpose, there is all this suffering, and there will be no more mysteries. But now we must live … we must work, just work! — Anton Chekhov

A man wants nothing so badly as a gooseberry farm. — Anton Chekhov

Here I am with you & yet not for a single moment do I forget that there’s an unfinished novel waiting for me. — Anton Chekhov

The illusion which exalts us is dearer to us than ten thousand truths. — Anton Chekhov


Desription should be very brief and have an incidental nature. — Anton Chekhov

desription should be very brief and have an incidental nature Anton Chekhov quote

Do you know when you may concede your insignificance? Before God or, perhaps, before the intellect, beauty, or nature, but not before people. Among people, one must be conscious of one’s dignity. — Anton Chekhov

In countries where there is a mild climate, less effort is expended on the struggle with nature and man is kinder and more gentle. — Anton Chekhov

By nature servile, people attempt at first glance to find signs of good breeding in the appearance of those who occupy more exalted stations. — Anton Chekhov

Only those young people can be accepted as healthy who refuse to be reconciled with the old order and foolishly or wisely struggle against it–such is the will of nature… — Anton Chekhov

In descriptions of nature one must seize on small details, grouping them so that when the reader closes his eyes he gets a picture. — Anton Chekhov

Probably nature itself gave man the ability to lie so that in difficult and tense moments he could protect his nest, just as do the vixen and wild duck. — Anton Chekhov

What were Anton Chekhov’s major accomplishments?

Chekhov took his long-winded and ineptly facetious play Wood Demon and converted it—largely by cutting—into Uncle Vanya, one of his greatest stage masterpieces.

In another great play, The Cherry Orchard, Chekhov created a poignant picture of Russian landowners in decline, in which characters remain comic despite their very poignancy



There ought to be a man with a hammer behind the door of every happy man. — Anton Chekhov

People don’t notice whether it’s winter or summer when they’re happy. — Anton Chekhov

Once you’ve married, be strict but just with your wife, don’t allow her to forget herself, and when a misunderstanding arises, say: ‘Don’t forget that I made you happy. — Anton Chekhov

At the door of every happy person there should be a man with a hammer whose knock would serve as a constant reminder of the existence of unfortunate people. — Anton Chekhov

there ought to be a man with a hammer behind the door of every happy man Anton Chekhov quote

Three o’clock in the morning. The soft April night is looking at my windows and caressingly winking at me with its stars. I can’t sleep, I am so happy. — Anton Chekhov

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