Classification – name: Literary studies
Pages: 131–155
Publisher: A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IWL RAS Publ.)
Rights – description: Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 (СС BY-ND)
Rights – URL:
Language of the publication: Russian
Type of document: Research Article
Collection: L.N. Tolstoy: Moral Search and Creative Laboratory
Year of publication: 2021
Place of publication: Moscow


Author: Irina B. Pavlova
Pavlova, I.B. “Concerning the World Harmony and the Human Debt in the Epic Novel ‘War and Peace’ (Symbolism of Petya Rostov’s Premortal Dream).” L.N. Tolstoy: Moral Search and Creative Laboratory. Moscow, IWL RAS Publ., 2021, pp. 131–155. (In Russ.)

About the author:

Irina B. Pavlova, DSc in Philology, Senior Researcher, A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia.

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


The article is related to the issue of the highest expediency of the world order, the organic connection between the earthly and the heavenly, the musical harmony of the universe and the purpose of man, the moral duty of an individual and all mankind on the example of analyzing Petya Rostov’s dreamy vision before his death. The dreams of a young hero are a revelation associated with the issues of the universe, they become omens to the lesion of dark, destructive elements and victories of ordering and beauty over evil and ataxia. The salvation of Russian people became possible with the spiritual union of the nation, the awakening of the “swarm” principle. This fragment of the epic novel clearly reflected the artist’s cosmology, which is close to the ideas of ancient Greek philosophy, the teachings of the Pythagoreans, Plato, and the ethical views of the founder of German classical philosophy I. Kant. In the events of the Patriotic War of 1812, the writer saw the manifestation of those patterns that, from his point of view, govern the universe, the predetermined course of history, the triumph of the correct world order.

Keywords: epic novel “War and Peace”, music of cosmos, the cosmology of Tolstoy, “swarm” principle, the moral law.