Professor Maia Kipp, a native Russian and Chekhov scholar, speaks the place and people names from the play. For instruction in the Russian accent of English, see Paul Meier’s Website.
Recorded by Professor Maia Kipp, edited by Paul Meier, November 3, 2007; a revision of an earlier file made March 27, 2001. Running time 00:02:06.
Serebryakov Aleksandr Vladimirovich
Yelena Andreevna (Lenochka endearing)
Sofya Aleksandrovna (Sonya short/familiar; Sonechka, Sonyushka, both endearing)
Voynitskaya Maria Vasilyevna (Marya* Vasilyevna, colloquial pronunciation)
Voynitsky Ivan Petrovich (Vanya short/familiar)
Astrov Mikhail Lvovich
Telegin Ilya Ilyich (Vaflya nickname, some English versions offer literal translation of the name as Waffles. Apparently in reference to his pockmarked face)
Marina (Marina Timofeyevna Marina’s full first and patronymic names)
Other names, to which the characters refer in the play
Ostrovsky (an important playwright, Chekhov’s contemporary, wrote 48 plays, some still performed in major theatres in Russia)
Batyushkov (a major poet of the 19th century)
Konstantin Trofimovich Lakedemonov ( the last name is a made-up one and sounds pompous in Russian)
Ayvazovsky (a prominent Russian seascape painter of the 19th century)
Pestrushka (the name of one of Marina’s hens)
Zhuchka ( a common dog name )
* Chekhov is not consistent throughout in terms of rendering patronymic names of his characters. Most of those on the character lists, as well as in the dialogues, are rendered in their full literary form with the endings –ovich, -yevich. However, some names on the character lists and in dialogues are rendered in their colloquial pronunciation/contracted form, with the endings of –ych, -yich. Asterisks (*) indicate each instance of the use of such a form.