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The Cherry Orchard

by Anton Chekhov
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Is there any reason why Lyubov chose to live on the 5th floor in Paris in The Cherry Orchard?

Lyubov didn't choose to live on the fifth floor of a Paris apartment building. She was forced to live there due to her circumstances. Her lover had abandoned her and run off with her money.

The high floor at which she lived was an indication that she'd come down in the world. A woman of means would not have been living so high up in an apartment block.

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Lyubov is so impoverished that she really shouldn't have been living in Paris at all. But she's there all the same, remaining in the city of light, even after her lover has stolen her money and dumped her for another woman. However, as she can't afford to live in the...

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Lyubov is so impoverished that she really shouldn't have been living in Paris at all. But she's there all the same, remaining in the city of light, even after her lover has stolen her money and dumped her for another woman. However, as she can't afford to live in the lap of luxury, she has to make do with a cramped fifth floor apartment, the kind of place where someone in dire straits would live. It is there that her daughter Anya finds her, surrounded by French ladies and a Catholic priest.

It's all very bohemian, and one gets the impression that Lyubov, ever the drama queen, is playing another of her parts. Even Lyubov's suicide attempt after her lover abandoned her has an element of theatricality to it.

Lyubov can afford to live in such a bleak, uncomfortable apartment, yet somehow cannot seem to spare any money for her daughter, step-daughter, and servants. As well as being selfish, Lyubov is a shallow, vain, materialistic woman, with absolutely no understanding of the value of money. We can see this by her profligate spending on the way home, as she forks out for a hot-air balloon ride for herself and Anya.

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