Nikolai Gogol

In Chapter 13 the Master is introduced as a "clean-shaven, dark haired man of about thirty-eight, a sharp nose, and a shock of hair hanging over his forehead"--Bulgakov himself was 38 in 1929. The Master's description here reminds some readers of Nikolai Gogol (1809-52), and indeed Gogol was both beloved by Bulgakov and one of the prototypes for some of the Master's actions (Gogol burned the manuscript of Part II of Dead Souls).