"Yes, sir," Vassily responded, smiling. "You've not been to see
us for a long while."
"I was here yesterday, but at the other entrance. Is this
Levin was standing with a peasant from Tver in the middle of the
room, measuring a fresh bearskin, when Stepan Arkadyevitch went
"What! you killed him?" cried Stepan Arkadyevitch. "Well done!
A she-bear? How are you, Arhip!"
He shook hands with the peasant and sat down on the edge of a
chair, without taking off his coat and hat.
"Come, take off your coat and stay a little," said Levin, taking
"No, I haven't time; I've only looked in for a tiny second,"
answered Stepan Arkadyevitch. He threw open his coat, but
afterwards did take it off, and sat on for a whole hour, talking
to Levin about hunting and the most intimate subjects.
"Come, tell me, please, what you did abroad? Where have you
been?" said Stepan Arkadyevitch, when the peasant had gone.
"Oh, I stayed in Germany, in Prussia, in France, and in England--
not in the capitals, but in the manufacturing towns, and saw a
great deal that was new to me. And I'm glad I went."
"Yes, I knew your idea of the solution of the labor question."
"Not a bit: in Russia there can be no labor question. In Russia
the question is that of the relation of the working people to the
land; though the question exists there too--but there it's a
matter of repairing what's been ruined, while with us..."
Stepan Arkadyevitch listened attentively to Levin.
"Yes, yes!" he said, "it's very possible you're right. But I'm
glad you're in good spirits, and are hunting bears, and working,
and interested. Shtcherbatsky told me another story--he met
you--that you were in such a depressed state, talking of nothing