The Seagull


Anton Chekhov

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Nina Mikhailovna Zarechnaya

The idealistic, fame-hungry Nina Zarechnaya is one of Chekhov’s best-known characters. A young woman who lives across the lake from Sorin’s estate with her cruel, controlling father and stepmother, Nina’s surname means “across the… read analysis of Nina Mikhailovna Zarechnaya

Boris Alekseevich Trigorin

A famous writer and Arkadina’s lover. Trigorin, like Dorn, Sorin, and Treplyov, has been interpreted as a shade of Chekhov himself. Trigorin’s famed monologue in Act Two about the misery of… read analysis of Boris Alekseevich Trigorin

Konstantin Gavrilovich Treplyov

Arkadina’s son. A tortured young artist who is desperate to prove his talent to the world, Treplyov insists on bringing “new forms” to literature—but struggles to find the focus and insight he needs to… read analysis of Konstantin Gavrilovich Treplyov

Irina Nikolaevna Arkadina

A middle-aged actress whose hunger for the fame and beauty of her youth have come to dominate her life. “Arkadina” is a stage name chosen to suggest the pastoral beauty of Arcadia, an ancient Greek… read analysis of Irina Nikolaevna Arkadina

Pyotr Nikolaevich Sorin

Arkadina’s brother. A retired government official who now owns a large country estate on the edge of a lake, the elderly and sickly Sorin fears he has let his life pass him by—and is… read analysis of Pyotr Nikolaevich Sorin
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Ilya Afanasevich Shamraev

The caretaker of Sorin’s estate. He approaches his work, far from artistry as it is, with the same obsessive need for control that Trigorin, Treplyov, and Arkadina all exhibit. Easily impressed by… read analysis of Ilya Afanasevich Shamraev

Polina Andreevna

Shamraev’s wife and Masha’s mother. She is having an affair with Dorn, but is frustrated by his refusal to take her away from her droll country life. Polina resents Dorn for his… read analysis of Polina Andreevna


Shamraev and Polina Andreevna’s daughter, a forlorn and sour young woman who is “in mourning for [her] life.” Masha has intense feelings of unrequited love for Treplyov, but after he refuses time and time… read analysis of Masha

Evgeny Sergeevich Dorn

A country doctor carrying on an affair with Polina Andreevna. Dorn is a dear friend of Sorin’s, a lover of the arts, and, by his own admission, a womanizer whose status as a… read analysis of Evgeny Sergeevich Dorn

Semyon Semyonovich Medvedenko

A bumbling, anxious schoolteacher whose constant preoccupation with money—and the lack of it—alienates him from those around him. He is hopelessly in love with Masha and frustrated by her inability to reciprocate his feelings. Medvedenko… read analysis of Semyon Semyonovich Medvedenko
Minor Characters
A workman at Sorin’s estate.