The Lady with the Pet Dog Summary | Chapter 1 Summary
Dmitri Dmitritch Gurov has been on vacation at Yalta, the seaside vacation town, for a fortnight when he hears of a new arrival. The young, fair-haired woman of medium height wears a béret and has a white Pomeranian dog with her. She is often alone, and the other vacationers refer to her as "the lady with the dog."
Gurov rationalizes that if she is here alone, without her husband, then he should make her acquaintance. Dmitri Gurov is under forty, but he already has three grown children. He also has a wife whom he despises, describing her as "unintelligent, narrow, inelegant, was afraid of her, and did not like to be at home." He is often unfaithful to her and almost always speaks ill of women in general, referring to them as "the lower race."
However, while Gurov does not enjoy his wife's company and dislikes women in general, he finds that he cannot go for more than two days without the society of "the lower race." He does not enjoy the company of men. He feels free and easy with women, and understands how to attract them and bend them to his will.
Gurov has the uncanny ability to forget all his bad experiences with women, when he has shrugged them off and they have turned hysterical on him. Every time he meets a new woman, he is ready for his next amusing encounter.
The lady with the dog is no exception. One evening, she takes the table next to him as he dines in the gardens. Gurov beckons to the dog, which comes closer and growls at him. "He doesn't bite," the lady says, blushing. They enjoy an amusing, lighthearted conversation and walk together after dinner. She learns that he works in a bank and has two houses in Moscow. He learns that she has been married for two years, and that her husband may be joining her shortly. Her name is Anna Sergeyevna.
In his hotel room that night, he ponders her youth, her slender neck and her lovely grey eyes. He is certain that they will meet the next day. He...