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Tolstoy's fame was now spread all over the civilised world. Telegrams from America asked his opinion on the Russian political movement. Connections were established with Australia, India, Japan, China, and the Mohammedan world. All these varied nationalities, with different languages, customs, and religions, recognised in him a teacher of mankind. In answer, as it were, to this general recognition, Tolstoy began a work which undoubtedly will lay the foundation of a universal religion. He enlarged his collection of thoughts and aphorisms of wise men, and instead of a few quotations for each day he gave systematic tracts on all the fundamental questions of religion, wisdom, and morality, and entitled the work "A Cycle of Reading," for which he wrote some new tales and finished former ones, such as "The Divine and the Human," "Berries," "A Prayer," "Why?" "Korney Vasilyef," etc.

Immediately after the issue of the first edition,