Representatives of the noble family of the Turgenevs were descendants of the Tatar murza Arslan Turgen, who left the Golden Horde in the 15th century to serve the Grand Duke Vasily II the Dark. In the Turkic languages, the word "turgen" means "quick" or "hot-tempered". One of their descendants of this Murza was the great Russian writer Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev, who was born on October 28 (old style) 1818 in Orel.
The writer's father, Sergei Nikolaevich Turgenev, was an officer of the Cavalry Regiment, participated in the Patriotic War of 1812. He loved to live "in grand style", as a result of which, his financial affairs fell into complete decline. To remedy this situation, in 1816 Lieutenant Turgenev married Varvara Petrovna Lutovinova, who was the owner of the rich estate of Spasskoye-Lutovinovo. Two years later, the couple had a son, Ivan, who was the second child in the family.
Varvara Petrovna was an imperious woman, a typical serf woman. It was from her that Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev described the image of a lady in his famous story "Mumu". The writer's mother also had a mute janitor named Andrei. He got a dog, which Turgeneva ordered to drown. The janitor fulfilled the order of his mistress, but, unlike the book hero, he did not leave for his native village, but continued to faithfully serve Varvara Petrovna.
In the late XIX - early XX centuries. physiologists stubbornly tried to unravel the reasons for genius, for which they conducted a thorough study of the brain of famous figures. It turned out that Turgenev's brain weighed 2 kilograms and 12 grams, which is much more than the average mass of a human brain. But the direct relationship between genius and brain volume has not been proven, many equally famous people had a much smaller brain mass.
Officially, Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev never married, but had a daughter, Pelageya, from an affair with a seamstress Dunyasha. Later, Turgenev changed the name of his daughter Pelageya to Polina, considering it more euphonious. Polina Ivanovna Turgeneva died in 1919. From her marriage to businessman Gaston Brewer, she had two children - a son, Georges-Albert, and a daughter, Jeanne. Both of them died childless, therefore, at present, there are no descendants of Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev.
Because of his daughter, Turgenev almost had a duel with another Russian writer Leo Tolstoy. Turgenev and Tolstoy had friendly relations, but once Lev Nikolayevich reproached his fellow pen for not being particularly worried about his daughter, who, while living abroad, had to earn her living by sewing. The opponents were ready to settle their dispute with a duel with pistols, but the duel, fortunately, did not take place.
Turgenev was distinguished by a morbid addiction to cleanliness and order. Each thing he had to lie in a strictly defined place. Several times a day, the writer changed his underwear, wiped himself with water and cologne. And he began to work on his works only after the perfect order was put on the desk.
But, despite his love for order, the writer was extremely absent-minded. His friends were often offended that, having invited them to visit, Turgenev himself could forget about it, and not even appear at the appointed time in his own house. For this reason, many preferred to refuse such invitations.
Against the background of his contemporaries, the writer stood out for his enormous growth - 192 centimeters. At the same time, Turgenev's voice was thin, almost feminine. Ivan Sergeevich, despite his lack of ear for music, was very fond of singing. However, he himself treated his singing without much enthusiasm, comparing it to a pig's squeal. While laughing, Turgenev could literally fall to the floor.
In the thirties of the nineteenth century, Ivan Turgenev studied at the University of Berlin. Thanks to the financial support of his mother, he led a luxurious life, which greatly upset Varvara Petrovna. One day she decided to teach her son a lesson: she sent a heavy parcel to her son in Germany. Having opened it, Ivan Sergeevich was very upset - the package was packed with bricks.
Turgenev was passionate about hunting and chess. He was called one of the most famous hunters in Russia. And he was ready to play chess for many hours, moreover, he reached very significant heights in this game. If it was not possible to find a worthy opponent for a chess game, then Turgenev took up solving chess problems. Having barely met, Turgenev and Tolstoy sat down at the chessboard.
Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev died on August 22, 1883, far from Russia - in the Paris suburb of Bougival. During his lifetime, he bequeathed to be buried in his native country. Turgenev's body was taken to St. Petersburg, the funeral took place at the Volkovskoye cemetery. On the site of this cemetery, which is called "Literatorskie Mostki", there are the graves of many famous cultural figures.