The Cherry Orchard: Madame Ranevsky’s Monologue

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THE CHERRY ORCHARD By Anton Chekhov- Lyuba Ranevsky Monologue, ‘Oh My Sins!’

“Oh, my sins…. I’ve always scattered money about without holding myself in, like a madwoman, and I married a man who made nothing but debts. My husband died of champagne—he drank terribly—and to my misfortune, I fell in love with another man and went off with him, and just at that time—it was my first punishment, a blow that hit me right on the head—here, in the river… my boy was drowned, and I went away, quite away, never to return, never to see this river again…I shut my eyes and ran without thinking, but he ran after me… without pity, without respect. I bought a villa near Mentone because he fell ill there, and for three years I knew no rest either by day or night; the sick man wore me out, and my soul dried up. And last year, when they had sold the villa to pay my debts, I went away to Paris, and there he robbed me of all I had and threw me over and went off with another woman. I tried to poison myself…. It was so silly, so shameful…. And suddenly I longed to be back in Russia, my own land, with my little girl…. [Wipes her tears] Lord, Lord be merciful to me, forgive me my sins! Punish me no more! [Takes a telegram out of her pocket] I had this to-day from Paris…. He begs my forgiveness, he implores me to return…. [Tears it up] Don’t I hear music? [Listens.]”

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