Constance Garnett

Standard Name: Garnett, Constance
Birth Name: Constance Clara Black
Married Name: Constance Clara Garnett
During the first half of the twentieth century, CG translated over seventy volumes of Russian literature. At the expense of her eyesight, she translated the major works of Tolstoy , Gorky , and others, and produced the first English translations of Dostoevsky and Chekhov . Critic Carolyn Heilbrun suggests that she was largely responsible for the part Russian literature had played in the transition from Victorian letters to twentieth-century realism.
Heilbrun, Carolyn. The Garnett Family. Allen and Unwin.
Heilbrun, Carolyn. The Garnett Family. Allen and Unwin.
166, 183


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Education Clementina Black
CB was mainly educated at home by her mother and brothers. Her brothers were said to have given her a thorough grounding in both geography and mathematics. She also possessed an impressive command of French...
Education Emma Frances Brooke
Newnham College opened in September 1871 with Anne Jemima Clough as its principal, and with five pioneering students: Mary Paley (later Marshall , who encouraged Jane Ellen Harrison to follow her to Newnham), Edith Creak
Education Rumer Godden
RG 's determination to become a writer fuelled a continued self-education. Books were hard to come by in India, yet she managed to find and devour recent publications: Edith Sitwell 's Troy Park and Façade...
Education F. Tennyson Jesse
Though FTJ did not receive much formal education, she read voraciously. Important discoveries were theBrontësisters , Jane Austen , and Constance Garnett 's translations of Tolstoy .
Colenbrander, Joanna. A Portrait of Fryn. A. Deutsch.
Education Amy Levy
The school was one of these only recently set up by the Girls' Public Day School Company . It also took younger boys, and two of Amy's brothers attended with her. The headmistress, Edith Creak
Family and Intimate relationships Clementina Black
Among CB 's younger sisters was Constance (Black) Garnett , who became a noted translator of Russian literature.
Bloom, Abigail Burnham, editor. Nineteenth-Century British Women Writers. Greenwood Press.
Friends, Associates Clementina Black
During the 1880s CB studied privately at the library of the British Museum . At this time, Richard Garnett was the superintendent of the Reading Room. She became friends with him and his family, and...
Friends, Associates Jessie Ellen Cadell
JEC 's friends in London included the scholar Richard Garnett (superintendent of the British Museum reading room and future father-in-law of another translator, Constance Garnett ). They met in 1877 or 1878, and Richard Garnett...
Friends, Associates Amy Levy
They included Olive Schreiner , the future Beatrice Webb , Dollie Maitland Radford , Margaret Harkness , Clementina Black (whose sister Constance had been a school friend of AL ), and Eleanor Marx . Through...
Occupation Anton Pavlovich Chekhov
His work had great impact in England, where he was praised by George Bernard Shaw , Katherine Mansfield , Virginia Woolf , and E. M. Forster . Constance Garnett translated many of his works...
Performance of text Ethel Lilian Voynich
In 1890, ELV was, alongside Stepniak, both translating for and editing Free Russia, the journal of the Society of Friends of Russian Freedom , for whom she smuggled forbidden books into Russia, meeting...
politics Clementina Black
In London she met Fabian and Marxist socialists. She was a good friend of Eleanor Marx for some time, though their friendship later waned.
Garnett, Richard. Constance Garnett: A Heroic Life. Sinclair-Stevenson.
One source notes that CB 's affinity with Fabianism likely...
Textual Features Ethel Lilian Voynich
The protagonist, Olive Latham, called by one reviewer a matter-of-fact, square-toe-booted English hospital nurse,
TLS Centenary Archive Centenary Archive [1902-2012].
123 (20 May 1904): 156
nevertheless bears many similarities to ELV in her heritage, personal experiences, interests, and relationships.
She also...


January 1879-November 1880: Fyodor Dostoevsky's novel The Brothers Karamazov...

Writing climate item

January 1879-November 1880

Fyodor Dostoevsky 's novelThe Brothers Karamazov was serialized in Russkii vestnik.

28 May 1911: Anton Pavlovich Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard...

Writing climate item

28 May 1911

Anton Pavlovich Chekhov 's The Cherry Orchard was first performed in England (in Constance Garnett 's translation): by the Incorporated Stage Society at the Aldwych Theatre in London.


Goncharov, Ivan Aleksandrovich. A Common Story. Translator Garnett, Constance, W. Heinemann, 1894.
Dostoevsky, Fyodor Mikhailovich. The Brothers Karamazov. Translator Garnett, Constance, Heinemann, 1912.
Dostoevsky, Fyodor Mikhailovich. The Novels of Fyodor Dostoevsky. Translator Garnett, Constance, W. Heinemann, 1920.
Turgenev, Ivan Sergeevich. The Novels of Ivan Turgenev. Translator Garnett, Constance, W. Heinemann, 1899.
Tolstoy, Lev Nikolaevich. The Novels of Leo Tolstoy. Translator Garnett, Constance, W. Heinemann, 1904.
Chekhov, Anton Pavlovich. The Plays of Tchehov. Translator Garnett, Constance, Chatto and Windus, 1923.
Chekhov, Anton Pavlovich, and Edward Garnett. The Tales of Tchehov. Translator Garnett, Constance, Chatto and Windus, 1922.