Anton Pavlovich Chekhov was a Russian playwright, short story writer, and physician. He is considered to be one of the greatest writers of short fiction in history. Chekhov's works are known for their realism, humor, and compassion. He wrote over four hundred short stories and fourteen plays, including The Seagull, Uncle Vanya, and Three Sisters. His stories often focus on the mundane lives of ordinary people and their struggles with life's difficulties. Chekhov was also a doctor who worked with the poor in rural Russia. He used his medical knowledge to inform his writing and often wrote about the physical and psychological effects of illness on his characters. Chekhov's influence on modern literature is immense; he is credited with helping to develop the modern short story form as well as inspiring many later writers such as Ernest Hemingway and William Faulkner.