Georgij Mikhailych Vorotyntsev
Georgij Mikhailych Vorotyntsev (geh-OHR-gee mih-KHAH-lihch voh-roh-TIHN-tsehv), a dedicated army career officer. A stout, clean-shaven, stoic, and trustworthy man of action, he is educated and perceptive but not one of the intelligentsia. He is a patriot and a good commander, admired by his soldiers, but his understanding of the people’s wartime desperation leads him to call for a truce. He leaves the front to visit his family and friends in the rear. The decadence and chaos of life in Moscow and St. Petersburg lead him to a growing skepticism about the future. He is sufficiently open-minded to consider all arguments about Russia’s fate, but his loyalty to traditional authority prevents him from joining any of the revolutionary factions.
Alina (ah-LIH-nah), Vorotyntsev’s wife. She concentrates on becoming a concert pianist while separated from her husband by the war. She perceives the effects of the war from a personal, apolitical point of view. Her romantic attitudes and her cultural pretensions annoy Georgij. Although she worries about her beauty and connections, beneath the frivolous exterior she grieves for the wounded and attempts to rally other artists to assist them. In the end, her cultural instincts and empathy for others’ emotional trauma prove to be great virtues.
Olda Orestovna (oh-reh-STOV-nah), also called Professor Andozerskaja (an-doh-ZEHR-skah-yah), the lover and would-be mentor of Vorotyntsev. A scholar of...
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