RR Auction Home
Current Auction Is Open For Bidding
Home |Sitemap|Contact Us| Past Auctions  
 How to Bid   Register to Bid   Auctions   Consign   About Us   Featured Lots   Reviews 
Bidder Login
Show Password

New Bidder Registration
Forgot your password?

The Current Auction
Ends October 7th
Space & Aviation Auction Preview
Begins Oct 08
Advanced Search
By Item Number
Gallery Search
Past Auction Search
How Do I Bid?
What is BidTracker™?
New Bidder Registration
The 30-Minute Rule
Terms and Conditions
New to RR Auction?
About Us
Register to Bid
Jobs at RR Auction
Press Releases
Consign to RR Auction
How to Consign
2019-2020 Auction Calendar
Jan 8
Jan 16
Jan 23
Feb 5
Feb 13
Feb 21
Mar 4
Mar 12
Apr 8
Apr 16
May 13
May 21
Jun 10
Jun 18
Jul 8
Jul 16
Jul 23
Aug 12
Aug 20
Sep 9
Sep 11
Oct 7
Oct 15
Nov 11
Nov 19
Dec 9
Dec 17
  View All Dates & Deadlines

Item 615 - Leo Tolstoy Catalog 523 (Mar 2018)

Back To Previous Page
(we are no longer accepting bids on this item)
Minimum Bid: $1,000.00
Sold Price: $21,450.98 (includes buyer's premium)


Extremely rare ALS in Russian, signed “L. Tolstoy,” three pages on two adjoining sheets, 5 x 8, August 2, 1903. Letter to Pyotr Petrovich Nikolaev, in full (translated): "Well then, dear Pyotr Petrovich, I've read your manuscript and am returning it. It was a pleasure to read it. The entire direction of your ideas is dear, close and precious to me. I would like to say a lot, but won't, not only because it's awkward to do so in a letter, but because, and this is the main thing, it's not necessary. You yourself in all likelihood would make the same comments and corrections that I would like to make if you continue this work—continue not in the sense of making it longer, but in the sense of reworking it for the sake of clarity and thus shortening it. I would advise you to set forth everything in concise theses and, this is the main thing, don't be in a hurry. Set this work aside for a time, jotting down individual ideas that are connected to it. It wouldn't be bad to have the manuscript printed now—people might find it useful, but it would be better to have it printed when it has been improved as much as possible. I was very happy to read your manuscript, to see you, and to learn that you are still working on yourself in the same, one and true direction." In fine condition, with a few light stains.

Nikolaev was a writer, philosopher, and follower of Tolstoy, who, in mid-July 1903, had sent Tolstoy a letter enclosing his manuscript on the 'distortions of the teachings of Christ.' This wonderful missive, which was printed in Tolstoy's Complete Works in 90 Volumes, volume 74, presents Tolstoy offering his kind editorial advice, suggesting to Nikolaev to rework his manuscript “for the sake of clarity and thus shortening it,” counsel not entirely surprising given Tolstoy’s clear and concise style. The year this letter was written, Tolstoy published a set of four short stories—Esarhaddon, King of Assyria; Work, Death, and Sickness; Three Questions; and After the Ball—and one philosophical work entitled To the Orthodox Clergy. The first handwritten Tolstoy letter we have offered in nearly eight years.

Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.


Click image to enlarge Click image to enlarge Click image to enlarge

Important Information

Tips For Consignors


For a complete list of auction beginning and ending dates, check our dates and deadlines page.