Russian novelist and playwright and the first Russian writer to find success in Europe. His novels include A Nest of Gentlefolk (1859), On the Eve (1860), Fathers and Sons (1862), in which, in Bazarov, he created a nihilist hero, Smoke (1867), and Virgin Soil (1877). His greatest short stories are ‘Asya’ (1858), ‘First Love’ (1860), and ‘Torrents of Spring’ (1870). His best play is A Month in the Country (1850).
He lived for many years in Western Europe, and visited England many times: he was acquainted with Dickens, G. Eliot, Browning, and many other literary figures. He was one of the earliest admirers of H. James, on whom he had substantial influence. Perhaps the greatest English debt to him is owed by G. A. Moore, whose whole mature career was given shape by the discovery of Turgenev's artistry. By 1890 most of Turgenev's major work had appeared in English. The most complete early translation is C. Garnett's Turgenev—The Novels and Tales (1894–9), the edition through which he exerted his influence on such writers as Galsworthy, Conrad, and V. Woolf.
Subjects: Literature — Theatre.