Chekhov, Anton: (1860-1904) "Russia's most famous physician" and greatest dramatist. Anton Pavlovich Chekhov graduated from the Medical Faculty of Moscow University in 1884 and practiced medicine throughout much of his short remaining life. In 1890 Chekhov on his own undertook a medical census of the convicts in the Sakhalin Island penal colony. During the famine in 1891-92 Chekhov worked on disaster relief and throughout the 1890's provided treatment to local peasants.
By 1897 Chekhov was suffering from tuberculosis. Nonetheless, he continued working as best he could as a physician and as a playwright penned three masterpieces: The Lady with the Dog (1899), The Three Sisters (1900), and The Cherry Orchard (1903). He died of tuberculosis at 44 years of age in Badenweiler, Germany.
Anton Chekhov was devoted to medicine and enamored of literature. He once wrote a friend that, "Medicine is my lawful wife, and literature is my mistress. When I get fed up with one, I spend the night with the other. Though it is irregular, it is less boring this way, and besides, neither of them loses anything through my infidelity."