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MonkeyNotes-War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
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Countess Natalya Ilyini Chna Rostova Or Natasha

Tolstoy traces the growth of Natasha from a bubbly teenager to a contented wife and a mother. Natasha passes through different phases of life and experiences different emotions. In the process, she evolves herself from an innocent girl to a mature woman. To some extent, Natasha resembled Tolstoy’s wife when she was young and newly married. This is the reason why, Natasha comes alive as a lovable but foolish girl who wins the heart of the readers through her childish pranks and feminine foibles.

The first impression that one gets of Natasha is that of a charming teenager in the flush of her youth. Innocent and uncorrupted, she is happy playing pranks with her brothers, teasing her lover, Boris and confiding her secrets to Sonya. Immersed in her world of imagination and carefree abandon, she is unaware of the political turmoil in the country or the intrigues of people in high society. Her life revolves round her family, her friends, and her past times.

Natasha is blessed with the talents of beauty, brains and talent. No wonder, she has a lot of admirers who are besotted by her charms. Boris falls for her youthful charm, Denisov loses his heart over her captivating personality, Andrei is drawn to her vitality and vibrancy, Anatol lusts for her beautiful body and Pierre admires her spirit of love. Natasha falls in love with all these men at different stages of her life. Later, she realizes that she had childish infatuation for all these men, except in the case of Andrei and Pierre. She understands the concept of real love only after meeting Andrei and with Pierre she finds fulfillment in love.


Natasha has a generous heart that accepts anyone who shares a rapport with her and pampers her ego. Thus, she likes Boris for reciprocating her love, admires Denisov for his friendly nature and gentlemanly behavior, Andrei for his intensity, Anatol for his chivalrous attitude and passion and Pierre for his kindness and understanding. She takes people at face value and judges them by their outward appearance. She is unable to detect evil in men like Anatol because she is too innocent to detect hypocrisy beneath a pleasing personality. Natasha is gullible, impulsive and emotional. She easily trusts people and also gets hurt.

Natasha is a painter’s delight and Tolstoy’s best creation because she reveals varied human emotions and feminine gestures that captivate the heart of the readers. Her foibles only increase her charm and she emerges as a full-blooded person endowed with the good and the bad. Her cheer, joy, passion, grief and regret appear real and the readers are likely to empathize with her. After experiencing betrayal and anguish, when she regains love and happiness, the readers might heave a sigh of relief. Natasha commits human errors, but she is good human being. Thus, she rightly deserves peace and harmony.

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