A Gentleman in Moscow

A Gentleman in Moscow

by

Amor Towles

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Emile Zhukovsky Character Analysis

The head chef of the Boyarksy and the third member of “the Triumvirate,” along with the Count and Andrey. Their friendship becomes crucial to Emile as they support him against the Bishop’s tyranny. The Count describes Emile as a genius, coming up with ways to adapt to food shortages by replacing certain ingredients with others. Emile begins his days as a pessimist, but cooking gives him such joy that he gains a rosier perspective over the course of the day, as he improvises the perfect dishes for his guests.

Emile Zhukovsky Quotes in A Gentleman in Moscow

The A Gentleman in Moscow quotes below are all either spoken by Emile Zhukovsky or refer to Emile Zhukovsky . For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Imprisonment, Freedom, and Purpose Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Random House edition of A Gentleman in Moscow published in 2016.
Book 3, Arachne’s Art Quotes

With the slightest turn of the wrist the shards of glass tumble into a new arrangement. The blue cap of the bellhop is handed from one boy to the next, a dress as yellow as a canary is stowed in a trunk, a little red guidebook is updated with the new names of streets, and through Emile’s swinging door walks Count Alexander Ilyich Rostov—with the white dinner jacket of the Boyarsky draped across his arm.

Page Number: 176
Explanation and Analysis:
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Emile Zhukovsky Character Timeline in A Gentleman in Moscow

The timeline below shows where the character Emile Zhukovsky appears in A Gentleman in Moscow. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Book 1, An Anglican Ashore
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
The narrator goes on to describe the restaurant’s chef, Emile Zhukovsky, who had been the most celebrated chef in Russia when he took up the... (full context)
Bolshevism and Class Struggle Theme Icon
As Andrey goes to ask Emile about the nettle, the Count reflects how the Boyarsky could not run without Andrey. Andrey... (full context)
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Andrey and Emile return, and Emile sarcastically congratulates the Count on correctly guessing that there is nettle in... (full context)
Book 2, 1923, An Actress, an Apparition, an Apiary
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
Bolshevism and Class Struggle Theme Icon
Anna uncovers their dinner to find one of Emile’s signature dishes: whole bass roasted with olives. Before the Count can serve her, Anna quickly... (full context)
Book 3, Arachne’s Art
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
...the Bishop as the new assistant manager). The Boyarsky still serves the very best from Emile Zhukhovsky, who is chopping away in the center of the kitchen (though the narrator notes... (full context)
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
Emile, Andrey, and the Count, whom the narrator calls “the Triumvirate,” gather for their daily meeting.... (full context)
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
Chance, Luck, and Fate Theme Icon
...matter: the envelope that had been slipped under his door, which is filled with saffron. Emile is delighted. The men then scheme about how to acquire oranges for a dish Emile... (full context)
Bolshevism and Class Struggle Theme Icon
...in temperature in the preceding weeks, his success in finding saffron, and his commendation from Emile. The Count passes through the lobby, where a boy from the mail room calls out... (full context)
Book 3, An Alliance
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
The Count peers in to check on Emile, who always begins the day as a pessimist, but who throughout the day remembers the... (full context)
Book 3, Absinthe
Chance, Luck, and Fate Theme Icon
...for absinthe. He takes his drink upstairs to the Boyarsky’s kitchen. The Count, Andrey, and Emile had long had a desire to share a certain dish, but many of the ingredients... (full context)
Imprisonment, Freedom, and Purpose Theme Icon
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
The Count arrives in the kitchen, absinthe in hand. A few moments later, as Emile prepares, Andrey arrives from the back stair with a pile of oranges tumbling from his... (full context)
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
At one in the morning, the Count, Emile, and Andrey enjoy the fruits of their labors: three bowls of bouillabaisse (a decadent seafood... (full context)
Book 3, Antics, Antitheses, an Accident
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
The Count then goes to his daily meeting in the Boyarsky with Andrey and Emile, who agree that it is outrageous that the Bishop accused Sofia of such an act.... (full context)
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
The meeting is interrupted by Emile’s young sous-chef Ilya. When Emile asks what the matter is, Ilya simply points through the... (full context)
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Bolshevism and Class Struggle Theme Icon
Andrey suggests that Mishka and the Count catch up in Emile’s office. Emile places bread and salt on the table (an old Russian symbol of hospitality)... (full context)
Imprisonment, Freedom, and Purpose Theme Icon
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
...not ready to share just yet. The Count sees Mishka out of the kitchen, and Emile gives Mishka a bit of food for the road. Mishka leaves, wondering aloud who could... (full context)
Book 4, 1952, America
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
The second course is served, and the Count states that Emile has outdone himself, once again hoping to change subjects. Sofia says that Anna thinks the... (full context)
Book 4, 1953, Apostles and Apostates
Bolshevism and Class Struggle Theme Icon
...the implication of theft, and told the Bishop that he would relate their conversation to Emile and Andrey in their daily meeting. And so, the new system continued throughout the evening. (full context)
Chance, Luck, and Fate Theme Icon
...the bedroom. The Count exits to the other room through his closet, where he gives Emile and Andrey such a shock that Emile drops the cake they had brought in celebration.... (full context)
Imprisonment, Freedom, and Purpose Theme Icon
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
...that it is no use keeping his room a secret, the Count leads Andrey and Emile through the closet to his study. They congratulate Sofia on her success. At that moment,... (full context)
Book 5, 1954, Applause and Acclaim
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Bolshevism and Class Struggle Theme Icon
Andrey and Emile are in the kitchen, in disbelief that in six months, on June 21, Sofia will... (full context)
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Bolshevism and Class Struggle Theme Icon
Andrey, Emile, and the Count are wondering whether Paris has changed, when the newest member of their... (full context)
Book 5, Adulthood
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Bolshevism and Class Struggle Theme Icon
Later, the Count, Emile, Andrey, and the Bishop all sit in the Bishop’s office. The Boyarsky’s daily meeting has... (full context)
Book 5, Anecdotes
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
...a small bell on the table, and when she rings it, Andrey appears. He presents Emile’s newest specialty: Goose à la Sofia. The Count proceeds to recall that morning in which... (full context)
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
...for a long time, until the Count admits defeat when Sofia comes up with Andrey, Emile, and Alexander (the Count). (full context)
Afterword, Afterwards…
Imprisonment, Freedom, and Purpose Theme Icon
...try to question the Bishop, but they cannot seem to find him either. Andrey and Emile hear a rumor that Sofia has gone missing in Paris. (full context)
Imprisonment, Freedom, and Purpose Theme Icon
Change and Adaptation Theme Icon
Friendship, Family, and Love Theme Icon
As Andrey and Emile discuss whether the Count could truly have escaped, the concierge delivers an envelope to each... (full context)