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Gogol declared that he did not write a single line of these early chapters without thinking how Pushkin would judge it, at what he would laugh, at what he would applaud.
Both Gogol and Pushkin thought of "Don Quixote," the spirit of which is evident enough in this book.
Despite the opposition of her mother, despite the iron bonds of convention, she is ready to forsake all and follow him.
The essential goodness of a woman's heart is fertile soil for an orator, whether he speaks from the platform or in a conservatory.
To complete his portrait: he was of medium size, square, and stout; panting when he ascended stairs, or even walking on level ground; a face massive and broad as a mask, and reminding one of those fabled beings who blew fire from their nostrils; a huge moustache, white and grizzly; small gray eyes, always fixed, like those of a doll, but still terrible.
It was almost the dinner-hour; and the young man, after arranging his toilet, immediately descended to the drawing-room, where his presence seemed to throw a wet blanket over the assembled circle.