Dead Souls (Russian: , Mjrtvyje dshi) is a novel by Nikolai Gogol, first published in 1842, and widely regarded as an exemplar of 19th-century Russian literature. The novel chronicles the travels and adventures of Pavel Ivanovich Chichikov (Russian: ) and the people whom he encounters. These people typify the Russian middle-class of the time. Gogol himself saw his work as an “epic poem in prose”, and within the book characterised it as a “novel in verse”. Despite supposedly completing the trilogy’s second part, Gogol destroyed it shortly before his death. Although the novel ends in mid-sentence (like Sterne’s Sentimental Journey), it is regarded by some as complete in the extant form.