Page:The life of Tolstoy.djvu/179

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.



whole organisation of assistance and protection then fell upon Tolstoy's shoulders. At last the permission of the Government was obtained for the Dukhobors to emigrate. They began their preparations, but, ruined as they were, and dispersed in exile, they had no means to make a start or to charter a steamer to carry them to Canada, where the authorities had promised them land. A large sum of money was needed, and to collect it in Russia was extremely difficult. Then Tolstoy came to the rescue. He put the finishing touches to a novel begun long before, and offered it to the well-known publisher, Marx, on condition that all author's fees should be devoted to Dukhobor emigration. In response to an appeal to the English Quakers for help, and to other friends of the Dukhobors, further funds were collected, and the emigration took place. In this way Tolstoy's magnanimous aid to the Dukhobors gave the whole intellectual world the moral benefit of his great novel, "Resurrection."

It is not necessary to dwell on the contents of this well-known work, but only to point out that the fall and regeneration of a human soul are depicted in it with the deepest insight and utmost veracity. Throughout the novel the State, the Church, and the existing social order are criticised,