Summary “The Queen of Spades”

“Pushkin’s Queen of Spades” is written in the traditions of the literary realism direction. The idea and plot of the work was suggested to the writer by the young prince Golitsyn, who somehow managed to recoup, putting, on the advice of his grandmother, N. P. Golitsina, while playing three cards. Golitsina in due time, suggested these cards himself Saint-Germain.

Main characters

Hermann, a military engineer, the son of a Russified German who inherited a small capital, was “secretive and ambitious.”

Lizaveta Ivanovna – a young lady, a poor ward of the Countess ***.

Countess *** – an eighty-year-old woman, the grandmother of Tomsk, who knows the “secret of three winning cards,” is the personification of fate in the story.

Other characters

Paul Tomsky is the grandson of the old countess ***, Hermann’s friend.

Chekalinsky is a man of sixty, a famous Moscow player.


is a horse guard, a friend of Tomsky and Herman.

Chapter 1

“One day they played cards with Konnogvardeytsya Narumov.” Conducting a small talk after the game, the men are surprised one of those present – Hermann, who spent the whole evening watching the game of others, but he did not play at all. The man replied that his game took a lot, but he was not in a position to “sacrifice necessary in the hope of gaining unnecessary”.

One of the guests – Tomsky, noticed that Hermann is German, and therefore prudent and his attitude to the game is easy to explain. What really surprised Paul, so this is why his grandmother Anna Fedotovna is not playing. Sixty years ago, when she was in Paris, she lost a very large sum at the court to the Duke of Orleans. The husband flatly refused to pay the debt of Anna Fedotovna, so she decided to turn to the rich man Saint-Germain. “Old eccentric” instead of lending money, revealed to the woman the secret of three cards, which certainly helped to win, if you put them in a row. The same evening, the woman fully

recouped, but after this incident, the countess did not reveal a secret to anyone. The guests reacted with disbelief to this story.

Chapter 2

Countess ***, the grandmother of Tomsk, “was wayward, like a woman spoiled by light, stingy and submerged in cold selfishness, like all old people who have fallen out in their age and are alien to the present.” Constantly a victim of reproaches and whims of the old woman was her pupil, young lady Lizaveta – “preneschastnoe creation.” The girl accompanied the old woman everywhere, at balls, “she sat in the corner like an ugly and necessary decoration of the ballroom”, “she played the most miserable role in the world.” Everyone knew her and no one noticed her, “so the young lady waited patiently for her” deliverer “.

A few days after the evening, a young engineer appeared near Narimov’s window near the window of Lizaveta, whom the girl noticed while sitting by the window behind her hoop. “Since that time, there has not been a day that a young man, at a certain hour, did not appear under the windows of their house.” A week later Lizaveta smiled for the first time.

This secret admirer was Hermann. Tomsky’s account of the maps “had a strong effect on his imagination,” so Hermann decided that he must know the secret of the countess. Once walking in St. Petersburg, a man accidentally comes to her house. After that, Hermann dreamed of a dream, like “he put a map behind the map, bent the corners decisively, won unceasingly, and raked in his gold, and put the notes in his pocket.” In the morning the man again comes to the Countess’s house and sees Lizaveta in the window – “this minute decided his fate.”

Chapter 3

Lizaveta receives a letter from a secret admirer, in which he confessed to her in love. The young lady writes the answer and returns the message of Hermann, throwing him a letter on the street through the window. But it did not stop Hermann – he began to send letters to the girl every day, asking for a date. Finally, Lizaveta yielded, throwing a message in the window, in which she explained how to imperceptibly come to her room at night while the Countess was at the ball.

Entering the Countess’s house at night, Hermann hid in the study leading into the Countess’s room. When the old woman was left alone, the man went out to her. Asking the countess not to scream, he explained that he came to find out the secret of the three cards. Seeing that the old woman does not want to share a secret with him, the man took out a pistol. Afraid of the type of weapons, the countess dies.

Chapter 4

Lizaveta, sitting at this time in her room in expectation of Hermann, recalls Tomsky’s words with which he described his friend with the “profile of Napoleon and the soul of Mephistopheles” at the ball: “this man has at least three villainies in his soul.”

Then Herman comes to her and tells him that he was at the countess’s and guilty of her death. The girl understands that the man actually was looking for a meeting with her for the sake of enrichment, and she, in fact, is an assistant to the murderer. Lizaveta is struck by the external resemblance of a man to Napoleon. In the morning the man secretly leaves the house.

Chapter 5

Three days later, Hermann went to the monastery, where the funeral service was performed. When he went to the coffin and looked at the deceased, it seemed to him that “the dead mocked at him, screwing up one eye.” Stepping back, Hermann fainted.

At night, the man woke up at a quarter to three and heard someone first knocked at his window and then went into the room. It was a woman in a white dress – the late countess. She said that she came to him not of her own free will, but to fulfill his request. The Countess discovered the secret of three cards – “three, seven and ace”, but she said that the win waits for a man only on the condition that he “does not bet more than one card a day”, after all his life he will not play and marry Lizaveta.

Chapter 6

These three cards did not leave Hermann’s head. Just at this time in St. Petersburg came a famous player Chekalinsky. Hermann decides to play with Chekalinsky and the first time, putting on the top of 47 thousand, wins. After receiving the win, he immediately went home. The next day, Hermann put all the money on the seven. Having won 94 thousand, the man “with coolness and at the same time retired”. On the third day Chekalinsky distributed a lady of spades and an ace. Hermann, exclaiming that his ace had beaten the lady, suddenly looked closely and saw what the lady was really stretching: “At that moment it seemed to him that the Queen of Spades had screwed up her eyes and grinned.” An unusual resemblance struck him… “” An old woman! “He shouted. horror “.


After the incident, Hermann went insane and went to Obukhov hospital. Lizaveta married the son of the former countess governor.


In the story “The Queen of Spades” Pushkin first in Russian literature touched on the topic of crime, atrocities against man. The author has shown that evil always breeds evil, leading to alienation from society and gradually killing a person in the criminal.

A brief retelling of the “Queen of Spades” allows you to quickly get acquainted with the content of the story, as well as refresh the main events in memory, but for a better understanding of the work, we recommend to read the story completely.

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Summary “The Queen of Spades”