A beloved Soviet writer's path to dissent
By KEITH GESS
The New Yorker
Issue of 2006-03-06
In the terrible winter of 1938, just before
the last of the Moscow show
trials, the Soviet secret police arrested a woman
named Olga Guber for having failed to denounce her
anti-Soviet husband. It was an error. The husband
she was to have denounced-the poet Boris Guber, arrested
a year earlier-was no longer her husband. The novelist
Vasily Grossman was her husband. Desperate, Grossman
sent a carefully composed letter to Nikolai Yezhov,
the head of the N.K.V.D. He wrote that Olga had severed
all ties with Guber long before.
This was not really true. Then
he wrote, "I obtained a diploma from a Soviet high
school, received my degree in chemistry from Moscow
State University in 1929, and worked as a senior research
scientist . . . in the Donbass. I have been a full-time
writer since 1934. . . . All that I possess-my education,
my success as a writer, the high privilege of sharing
my thoughts and feelings with Soviet readers-I owe
to the Soviet government." That part was true; or,
at least, Grossman meant it. He basically meant it.
Grossman went on to write "Life
and Fate" and "Forever Flowing," novels that in their
warmth of feeling and their historical sweep stand
alongside "The Gulag Archipelago" as the most anti-Soviet
books of all time. Yet here is this letter, which the
American scholars John and Carol Garrard dug up and
published in their 1996 biography of Grossman. Was
it pro-Soviet? Consider that Grossman was born in 1905
in Berdichev, a large town in the Pale of Settlement.
When he was twelve years old, the Revolution wiped
out residence restrictions for Jews, allowed them equal
entry into élite universities, and even took a great
many of them into the secret police. Furthermore, by
the time he wrote to the N.K.V.D. Grossman had gone
from being a penniless chemistry student to being an
established writer, with two published novels and,
courtesy of the Soviet Writers' Union, an apartment
in the center of Moscow. He had cause to be grateful.
He also had nowhere else to
go. He knew French, but he wasn't of the Russian generation
that corresponded with Rilke and sat for Picasso. He
had no reason to be nostalgic for the Tsar's Russia,
obviously. So he was making the best of things. His
literary career began, as he told Yezhov, in 1934,
with the publication of the story "In the Town of Berdichev."
It was about a hard-as-nails Bolshevik commissar who,
having become pregnant during the civil war, is bivouacked
with the Magazaniks, a poor Jewish family in Berdichev,
while she gives birth. As Polish forces approach Berdichev,
she decides that she will stay with her little Alyosha
rather than retreat with her regiment. But at the last
minute she sees a group of workers marching, suicidally,
in the Poles' direction, and she remembers Red Square
a few years earlier, and hearing Lenin speak, and being
indescribably moved. She runs out of the house and
follows the workers to their deaths; the Jewish family
will raise her child. Watching her, the old worker
Magazanik says to his wife, "There used to be people
like that in the Bund. Those are real people, Beyla.
Whereas us? We're not people. We're shit." His wife
tells him to be quiet and heat some milk for the child.
The details of the story save
it from sentimentality; or, rather, the sentimentality
is distributed evenly, between the touching Jewish
family and the dream of world revolution, so that there's
an honesty to the setup. The commissar really thinks
she's going to stay with her child, and maybe she should.
And maybe she shouldn't.
"In the Town of Berdichev" was
greeted with genuine enthusiasm. The fashionable novelist
Ilya Ehrenburg, then in Paris, thought Grossman's work
reminiscent of Babel, and Babel himself was charmed
by the story. Even Mikhail Bulgakov, unflappably haughty
toward all things Soviet, seemed to like it. "Excuse
me," he said, "do you mean to say that something worthwhile
can still be published?" That year, Russian literature
entered the darkest period in its history. It must
have looked as if Grossman had found a solution to
the problem of socialist realism-by combining a realist
method with an unintrusive sympathy for the revolutionary
movement-and he continued to pursue this in stories
and, most notably, in his novel "Stepan Kolchugin,"
about a coal miner turned revolutionary. It wasn't
that he was a believer-a cousin had been arrested in
1933, and Grossman never joined the Party-but he understood
and respected the faith of the believers. Later on,
as a famous war correspondent, Grossman asked his editor
to "give refuge" to his friend Andrei Platonov, the
strange, great novelist. "He is defenseless and unsettled,"
Grossman wrote. Grossman, by contrast, was not unsettled:
he understood the rules and he was going to play by
In 1938, the henchmen of the
Lubyanka were not unresponsive to Grossman's request;
this was part of their charm. If they accused you of
being a British spy, and you told them you weren't,
they would beat and torture you until you changed your
mind. Otherwise, they shot you, as they shot Guber.
But if you caught them on a technicality-the husband
you were supposed to have denounced was no longer your
husband-they might just let you go, with their apologies.
Olga was released. She had spent six months in prison.
T hen, in 1941, the war came.
Like many others, Grossman rushed to volunteer for
the front as the Germans overran Belarus and Ukraine
(including Berdichev, where his mother still resided).
He did not at first volunteer as a writer: he wanted
to kill Nazis. Being overweight, nearsighted, and in
poor health, he was rejected. He spent the next several
weeks trying to think of something to do, and ended
up at the editorial offices of Krasnaya Zvezda, the
A new book of Grossman's war
writings-a collection taken from his notebooks and
his published pieces-has just appeared in English as
"A Writer at War" (Pantheon; $27.50), translated by
Antony Beevor and Luba Vinogradova. Beevor, whose book
"Stalingrad" is the definitive account of the fighting
in that city and relies heavily for color on Grossman's
reportage, is very fond of Grossman, and this collection
weaves together his texts alongside lucid historical
commentary to tell the story of the war through Grossman's
eyes. But what about Grossman himself? One wants to
read the notebooks as a novel of education, recording
a growing consciousness of the brutality and the corruption
of the Soviet regime. In fact, a bit disappointingly,
the Grossman we meet at the beginning of the book is
already skeptical and wary of the regime. He notes
the propaganda in the papers. "The bedraggled enemy
continues his cowardly advance," goes the headline,
as the Germans take town after town. Interrogations
of occasional German prisoners (at this point it was
mostly Red Army soldiers who were being taken prisoner,
in the hundreds of thousands) are absurd and demoralizing,
a pathetic kind of Soviet tourism. Grossman writes
of a Wehrmacht motorcyclist being questioned at night:
He is Austrian, tall, good-looking.
Everyone admires his long, soft, steel-colored leather
coat. Everyone is touching it, shaking their heads.
This means: how on earth can one fight people who wear
such a coat? . . . The interpreter is a Jew, barely
literate. He is speaking in Yiddish.
Stalin was a magician, in his
way, but one could not simply announce that the German
armies weren't there or order them shot in the basement
of Lubyanka. Or, rather, one could order them shot,
that was just the thing to order, but they kept shooting
back. When Grossman returned to Moscow from his trip
to the front, his car dented by shrapnel after he had
barely escaped the German capture of Orel, his editor
immediately demanded to know why he hadn't described
the "heroic defense of Orel." Grossman answered that
there had been no defense of Orel, heroic or otherwise.
He was ordered back to the front.
Halted outside Moscow in December,
the Germans resumed their offensive in the south as
soon as the snow melted. The Red Army reeled again
until it reached the very edge of European Russia,
at a large industrial city on the Volga that in 1925
had been renamed Stalingrad.
When Grossman arrived, the city
had already been laid waste by the same Luftwaffe commander
who, during the Spanish Civil War, had bombed Guernica.
"Stalingrad is burned down," Grossman wrote, and he
I would have to write too much
if I wanted to describe it. Stalingrad is burned down.
Stalingrad is in ashes. It is dead. People are in basements.
Everything is burned out. The hot walls of the buildings
are like the bodies of people who have died in the
terrible heat and haven't gone cold yet. . . . There
are children wandering about, there are many laughing
faces. Many people are half insane.
Grossman spent the next five
months in the city, crossing between the east and west
banks, and earning the trust of the soldiers who were
fending off the Germans in brutal house-to-house fighting.
He formed a deep attachment to the men; Beevor (who
knows so much about Stalingrad that when Grossman mentions
some fish we get a footnote giving the species) describes
Grossman as experiencing a period of "spiritual idealization,"
believing that the defenders of Stalingrad were saints.
The men, in turn, seeing themselves described in Grossman's
articles in Krasnaya Zvezda, became attached to him.
"Your parental heart would have rejoiced if you could
see how I was welcomed by the Red Army," Grossman wrote
to his father. Only Ehrenburg, whose Krasnaya Zvezda
articles were floridly bloodthirsty, and earned him
the particular ire of Goebbels, was more famous in
Russia as a war correspondent than the understated,
In Stalingrad, Grossman spent
time with Vasily Zaitsev, the sniper whose duel with
a German counterpart was inflated into a multi-day
affair by Soviet propaganda (and then inflated once
more by Hollywood, which, in "Enemy at the Gates,"
stretched the contest to weeks and added a sex scene
with Rachel Weisz), but one of his longest articles
was an interview with another sniper, named Chekhov.
The name must have appealed to Grossman. To lie in
wait, patiently observing, watching, breathing, and
then, as soon as the man reveals his position, shooting
him in the head: it's not exactly what a writer does,
but it's not so dissimilar. Stalingrad was about life
and death, for Grossman, but it was also, necessarily,
about writing. It seems to have altered his idea about
truth. "It is only here that people know what a kilometre
is," he declared. "A kilometre is one thousand metres.
It is one hundred thousand centimetres." Maxim Gorky
had defined socialist realism as "the ability to see
the present in terms of the future." But what did a
centimetre look like from the future?
After the Germans were encircled
at Stalingrad, in the winter of 1943, Grossman and
the Red Army began to move west, and as they saw what
the Germans had done the mood of this book noticeably
darkens. "Death of ninety-three Jewish families," Grossman
notes in the city of Elista. "They'd smeared the children's
lips with poison." He hears about the murder of the
Jews of Odessa, Babel's home town. "Yesterday I was
in Kiev," he writes to Olga. He had attended high school
there. "I visited the addresses of relatives and acquaintances.
There are only graves and death." That fall, he summed
up what he had seen in an article that Krasnaya Zvezda
refused to run. "There are no Jews in the Ukraine,"
he wrote. "All is silence. Everything is still. A whole
people has been brutally murdered." Then he reached
Berdichev, where his mother had taught French, and
where she and Grossman had lived with his uncle David,
a doctor, after she and Vasily's father separated.
Now he learned what had happened after the Germans
took the town, two and a half years earlier: in the
course of two September days, Berdichev's entire Jewish
population-thirty thousand people-was murdered in a
clearing outside the town. Grossman's mother was among
the victims. And there was more. In the summer of 1944,
Grossman and the Red Army entered Poland. In July,
just outside of Lublin, they discovered Majdanek and,
northeast of Warsaw, Treblinka.
The Soviets have often been
reproached for suppressing what they knew about the
Holocaust. It's true that the widely publicized report
on Majdanek was assigned not to Grossman but, instead,
to the Party-line Konstantin Simonov, who ignored the
special status of the Jews in the Nazi organization
of death. It's also true that the Soviets kept quiet
about Auschwitz when they discovered the camp (and
painstakingly documented everything they found), the
following January. And when, after the war, Grossman
and Ehrenburg gathered an enormous collection of materials
and testimonies about the murder of the Soviet Jews
into a massive "Black Book," the result of their labors
was suppressed. But Grossman was allowed to publish
a twelve-thousand-word article on Treblinka in the
major monthly journal Znamya, in November of 1944,
when nothing of comparable scope and authority had
appeared anywhere, in any language. The article, which
was subsequently read at Nuremberg, is a masterly work
of reconstruction. Grossman gathered the information
from some of the local farmers and a handful of survivors
who had fled to the woods. Other than that, Treblinka
was gone: it had been razed months before. As in Ukraine,
there was nothing left for Grossman to find-"only graves
and death," as he had written. The Jews had all been
Early in the notebooks, you
sense the extent to which Grossman had imbibed the
spirit of Soviet internationalism. Babel, travelling
through the same areas during the civil war, had been
deeply moved by the traces he saw of Jewish culture;
Grossman barely seems to notice. But after he returned
through Ukraine, and especially after Warsaw, it was
as if he had been seized with the need to list all
the Jews he saw. "A cellar with Jews," he writes. "Jews
who have emerged from under the ground." "Story about
the encounter of two Jews from Lodz, in the darkness
of a boiler room." Finally, they reach Berlin: "Thousands
of encounters. Thousands of Berliners in the streets.
. . . An old man, a Jew, who burst into tears when
he learned about the fate of those who went to Lublin."
After the war, Grossman began
work on an epic novel about Stalingrad. "For a Just
Cause," the result, was a superior sort of socialist
realism. There are a lot of "historical" scenes (Stalin,
Hitler, meetings of the local Communist Party) and
descriptions of battles, but the characters at least
seem like human beings; we don't get colonels who resemble
"a young Gorky." Not everyone liked the novel when
it was published, in 1952; Pasternak was so disappointed
that when he had a heart attack not long after reading
it he blamed Grossman. But it was hailed in the press
as a Tolstoyan achievement.
Then it was unhailed-in part
because it underestimated the work of the Party in
the victory, in part because Stalin, as he accelerated
his campaign against "cosmopolitanism," had other plans
for the Jews than that they become Soviet Tolstoys.
Grossman was viciously attacked in Pravda, and Alexander
Tvardovsky, the editor of Novy Mir, had to apologize
publicly for serializing the novel. As the attacks
continued, and Stalin made public his fantastic Kremlin
Doctors' Plot, Grossman was asked to attend an urgent
meeting of leading Jewish cultural figures. On the
way there, he dropped in on Tvardovsky to tell him
what he thought of him. "Go to your meeting," Tvardovsky
finally exploded. "You still don't understand how it
is. They'll explain it for you." At the meeting, Grossman
was cajoled into lending his name to a dismal letter
condemning the Jewish doctors supposedly involved in
the plot, and begging for Stalin's mercy. Eventually,
although it was wintertime, Grossman and his friend
the poet and translator Semyon Lipkin retreated to
a dacha outside Moscow. Then Stalin died, and, as Grossman
later wrote, "the ice of the Arctic Ocean was broken,
and the ocean howled."
But Stalin's death alone cannot
account for the artistic leap from "For a Just Cause"
to its sequel, "Life and Fate." The two books share
many of the same characters, and they both center on
Stalingrad, and probably a computer analysis would
prove that the same author wrote both books-but the
computer would be wrong. "Life and Fate," which will
be reissued this spring by N.Y.R.B. Classics, in Robert
Chandler's fine translation, is a work of an entirely
different order. Like "War and Peace," it is structured
around a single extended family, in this case the Shaposhnikovs.
There is the same large canvas, the same method of
depicting the life of the entire country through the
lives of some intertwined, interrelated, but far-flung
characters, the same occasional philosophical digressions.
The heavy breathing of the generals who saved Stalingrad
and their melancholy feelings ("Neither of the two
men quite understood why their meeting had been so
unsatisfactory; that the main thing about it was not
the practical part, but what they had both been unable
to say") resemble the heavy breathing and quiet philosophizing
of Kutuzov, the savior of Borodino. There is the same
powerful human warmth that notices everything about
the characters, knows everything about them, so that
you feel them living on in the world of the book even
while you're not watching.
The novel begins with a description
of the fighting at Stalingrad, still in the martial,
residually Soviet tone of Grossman's newspaper days.
But then gradually the author seems to lose interest
in the battles and the generals. There is a remarkable
chapter about a woman who cannot get a residence permit
in the city to which she has been evacuated. There
is a chapter about a woman named Lyudmila Shtrum (née
Shaposhnikova), who is jostled on the tram on her way
to visit her wounded son in the hospital. That is all;
and her son dies. The depiction of the Shtrum family
itself, always quarrelling, then suddenly making up-strangers,
yet living in the same house and bound by deep blood
ties-doesn't feel Soviet at all. It feels like Chekhov,
or even Bellow. All the characters experience their
dilemmas physically-their lives are filled by them,
or emptied. Years of life under Communism have eroded
people's personalities; where the commissar in Grossman's
first short story was equally convincing as a mother
and as a commissar, the people in "Life and Fate" waver
between false positions. This is how a totalitarian
system can get its subjects to police themselves. "There
were cases of huge queues being formed by people awaiting
execution," Grossman writes in "Life and Fate," of
the German concentration camps, "and it was the victims
themselves who regulated the movement of these queues."
One simply no longer knows who one is. The brilliant
physicist Viktor Shtrum, Grossman's alter ego, is asked
by his institute's personnel department to fill out
an epic questionnaire. Question No. 29 is "Have you
or your closest relatives ever been the subject of
a judicial inquiry or trial?" At home, unthreatened,
Shtrum still breaks down:
He was seized by a feeling of
irreparable guilt and impurity. He remembered a meeting
at which a Party member, confessing his faults, had
said: "Comrades, I'm not one of us."
Suddenly Viktor rebelled. No,
I'm not one of the obedient and submissive. I'm all
on my own, my wife is no longer interested in me, but
so what? I won't renounce these unfortunates who died
for no reason.
You should be ashamed of yourselves,
comrades! How can you bring up such things? These people
are innocent-what can their wives and children be guilty
of? It's you who should repent, you who should be begging
for forgiveness. And you want to prove my inferiority,
to destroy my credibility-simply because I'm related
to these innocent victims? All I'm guilty of is failing
to help them.
At the same time, another, quite
opposite train of thought was running through Viktor's
. . . I didn't keep in touch with them, I never corresponded
with enemies of the Party, I never received letters
from camps, I never gave them material help, I met
them only infrequently and by chance . . .
A critic once complained that
Grossman's characters are poorly drawn, just "names
with problems." In fact, they seem to be problems with
bodies, their sufferings never merely verbal and never
quite possible to explain. The heroes of this novel
are weak, confused, misled people-and, whether they
are old revolutionaries who commit crimes in the name
of the Party or non-Party men who momentarily bow to
its tremendous pressure, Grossman examines them with
a remarkable lack of rancor. Solzhenitsyn thought the
old revolutionaries were despicable criminals; Grossman
prefers to say that, for the most part, they were terribly,
tragically mistaken, and most of them paid for it with
Grossman often gets carried
away. One subversive conversation after another is
reproduced, insights are had, and facts are noticed;
and little of this serves the development of the plot.
It is as if he had found a truth machine and needed
to put everything in the Soviet Union through it. This
will take a while. But to watch Grossman as he does
this-as he discovers how deep he can go into a person's
character, his psychology, merely by looking at him
in his most immediate social relations, among his family
and his friends-is to watch a man become free.
"Life and Fate" was finished
in 1960.Two years later, Grossman was forced to compose
another letter, this one to Nikita Khrushchev:
In October 1960 I submitted
the manuscript of my novel "Life and Fate" to the editors
of the journal Znamya. At approximately the same time
A. T. Tvardovsky, chief editor of the journal Novy
Mir, also received a copy.
In the middle of February 1961
officers of the KGB presented me with a search warrant
and seized from my home various copies and rough drafts
of the manuscript of "Life and Fate." Simultaneously,
copies of the manuscript were seized at Znamya and
The K.G.B. officers were careful
people; when they asked Grossman who else had the manuscript,
and he told them the typist did, they asked him to
go along with them to the typist's, in case they got
lost. Then they took him home.
What Grossman didn't mention
was that he had shown the manuscript to his friend
Semyon Lipkin, wondering what Lipkin would cut to make
it publishable. Lipkin read the thousand-page manuscript
in awe. He thought the book was a revelation-and that,
no matter what Grossman did, it could never be published.
As Lipkin recalled the scene in his memoir, Grossman
became angry and denounced him as a coward. They argued.
Then Lipkin told Grossman that his punctuation was
inconsistent, and Grossman almost threw him out. But
Lipkin kept a copy of the manuscript.
Grossman's letter to Khrushchev
lacks the concision and conviction of the letter to
Yezhov. It appeals, cleverly, to Khrushchev's speeches
about Leninist democracy, but the writer has lost the
thread of things: he no longer follows the logic of
the leadership, he meanders, and he seems distraught.
"There is no sense, no truth, in the present situation,
whereby I am physically free, but my book, to which
I have given my life, remains in jail," he wrote. "I
ask you to release my book." The sensible thing, Khrushchev
no doubt thought as he read this, would be to arrest
both man and book.
But these were different times.
Although Grossman's request was not granted, he was
given an audience with Mikhail Suslov, Khrushchev's
powerful cultural-affairs minister. Grossman recorded
Suslov's comments as soon as he got home, and they
make for curious reading. Suslov told him that he hadn't
read the book but had carefully attended to the internal
appraisals that the manuscript had received. And Suslov,
sharper on this point than Grossman, considered it
a dangerous book: "Why should we add your book to the
atomic bombs that our enemies are preparing to launch
against us? . . . Why should we publish your book and
begin a public discussion as to whether anyone needs
the Soviet Union or not?" Suslov said how much he liked
Grossman's old novels; why couldn't he write more of
Grossman's last years were unhappy,
lonely, and bitter. He didn't even know how to go about
sending a manuscript abroad. Pasternak, who would have
known, had died in 1960, after a nasty campaign against
him in the Soviet press. Grossman read Solzhenitsyn's
"One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich" in manuscript
and was ecstatic-at the achievement of the novella,
and perhaps because this might mean that his own work
would stand a better chance. But "Ivan Denisovich"
described only the camps, whereas Grossman's novel
encompassed all of Soviet society. Touchingly, Grossman
expected Solzhenitsyn to come and see him. The younger
man had heard of Grossman's book, and he had reached
the same place as Grossman intellectually, but he had
done so through the camps; by the time he began writing,
he was implacably opposed to the Soviet regime. And
perhaps there was some contempt for the accommodations
that the older writer had made. Solzhenitsyn did not
Life at home was miserable:
Grossman was now debilitated by cancer, and got on
poorly with his wife and his grown stepson, Fyodor.
Olga thought that he should write screenplays, and
when he was in the hospital she got rid of his dog.
(Grossman, admittedly, had been conducting an affair.)
Meanwhile, the people who watched such things continued
to watch Grossman. On October 25, 1962, at the height
of the Cuban missile crisis, the Central Committee
heard a report from one of its stooges at the Writers'
Union: not only was Grossman unrepentant; he would,
when prodded, become "very angry and express hostile
views on Soviet society." The next day, the committee
learned that Grossman was at work on another "anti-Soviet"
novel. Grossman's American biographers, the Garrards,
suggest that it was Fyodor who betrayed the contents
of the book.
"Forever Flowing," much shorter
than "Life and Fate," serves as its coda. Everything
inessential has been stripped away. The novella tells
the story of a man, Ivan Grigoryevich, who returns
from decades in the camps and cannot find a place for
himself in the new U.S.S.R. Some of his friends have
died, others have got married, and his cousin has become
a wealthy Soviet man. While he suffered, life went
on. Ivan Grigoryevich cannot understand this. He visits
the Hermitage and looks at the paintings, but they
leave him "cold and indifferent":
It was unbearable to think that
those paintings had remained as beautiful as ever during
the years in camp which had transformed him into a
prematurely old man. Why hadn't the faces of the madonnas
grown old too, and why hadn't their eyes been blinded
As Grossman, sick and despairing,
was writing this, a new generation gathered at the
Polytechnic Institute, listening to poetry and sighing
over the dreamy young Yevtushenko. They wore the convictions
that had cost Grossman his friends and his career the
way they wore the latest Polish jackets. And when the
time came for them to sign their letters and join the
great Soviet bourgeoisie, they mostly did.
An evil regime can make its
opponents ridiculous by making them shrill. After being
excluded from the university in "Life and Fate," Viktor
Shtrum briefly turns into a Soviet Noam Chomsky: "One
day Viktor counted eighty-six mentions of Stalin's
name in one issue of Pravda; the following day he counted
eighteen mentions in one editorial." Grossman himself
seems to have become like this socially; those who
weren't close friends recalled, toward the end of his
life, a very irritable man. But his writing became
only more lucid and more direct. In this last book,
Grossman, like a man making up for lost time, described
with a clear mind and heart the horrors that, for twenty
years as a writer, he had not quite mentioned: collectivization,
the famine, the camps. The freedom to say whatever
he pleased, unconcerned with the censor, apparently
liberated him, too, from his fealty to conventional
narrative: two-thirds of the way through the book,
we are treated to a very intelligent forty-page essay
explaining why Stalin was the heir to Lenin. The last
thread of loyalty-the romantic cult of Lenin-is snapped.
In the end, Grossman, who during
and after the war had been so popular, so in touch
with his readers, was as isolated and discouraged as
any writer in Russian history. "Forever Flowing" was
published in Germany in 1970; the manuscript of "Life
and Fate" sat at Lipkin's dacha for years before Lipkin
finally got up the courage to send it abroad, and it
wasn't published in Russia until 1988. Before that,
it was just a rumor. Grossman, who died in 1964, never
saw any of this. All he knew was that he had lost his
Soviet home, and had not found another.