صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

XV.

CHAP. save our lives. We at last, however, succeeded in getting out a couple of anchors; and having lowered and lashed the carriage, so as to secure it from any violent motion, passed the night in a state of extreme anxiety and terror. As the morning broke, we discerned the Asiatic coast towards the south; but the gale continuing, we could not raise our anchors before noon; when, again getting under weigh, we sailed with more moderate weather to the promontory of Chumburskaia, in ASIA, where we landed our carriage.

Chumburskaia.

The village of Chumburskaia consists of a few miserable sheds, whose tenants were busied hauling their nets, when we arrived. So prodigious was the draught of fishes made at every haul, that the waggons stationed with oxen to carry off the produce of the fishery were inadequate to its removal. A single haul was sometimes sufficient to fill two or three of those waggons. The fishes thus taken were conveyed to a place for preparing them, belonging to the owners of the land: here, being first salted, they were exposed for drying in the sun. The variety caught was very great. We saw them draw out Prussian carp, pike, sturgeon, sterlet, a sort of large bream, fish resembling perch, but of very considerable size, and those immense crawfish before mentioned. The shore

at this place was covered with fine gravel, composed of shells and sand. Swarms of toads and small serpents were crawling or running towards the sea; the water, although unwholesome, being so little impregnated with salt, that these animals live in it, and the inhabitants use it for drinking as well as for culinary purposes.

Proceeding towards the interior, the view is bounded by steppes, as upon the European side, covered with tall luxuriant plants. "No language," says Humbolt', can express the emotion which a naturalist feels, when he touches for the first time a land that is not European. The attention is fixed on so great a number of objects, that he can scarcely define the impression he receives. At every step he thinks he discovers some new production; and in this tumultuous state of mind he does not recollect those which are most common in our collections of Natural History." These remarks are so strictly applicable to our first feelings and observations upon landing in Asia, that we cannot avoid this insertion. A variety of new objects seemed immediately to present themselves to our notice; beetles of a gigantic

(1) "Humbolt's Personal Narrative," Vol. I. p. 28. Lond. 1814.

66

CHAP.
XV.

XV.

CHAP. size, locusts, various-coloured insects, and large green lizards, some of which were twelve inches in length. Having brought a letter to a Greek gentleman, whose commercial speculations, particularly in the fishery, had induced

him to fix his residence in this country, we Margari- found him at Margaritovskaia, another small touskaia. village, four miles from Chumburskaia; and caused our carriage to be conveyed to his house. He was settled in a small colony of his own countrymen, the neatness of whose cottages plainly distinguished them from all the other inhabitants of the country. "I have retired to this place," said he, " to be somewhat removed from the shore; as the natives along the coast are not to be trusted." He gave us a supper of rice, milk, and pancakes, according to the custom of his nation; and we should have felt comfortable in his little dwelling, had it not been for the revolting appearance of toads crawling upon the floor. Reptiles, vermin, bad air, bad water, and bad people, are among the plagues of Oriental territories; but the small district we traversed in this part of ASIA, from the Mouths of the Don to those of the Kuban, may vie in natural horrors with any other we have since seen. The roads at this season of the year (July) were however excellent, and the post was very well supplied.

[ocr errors]

ADDITIONAL NOTES.

PAGE 11, line 16. "A most interesting and remarkable phænomenon."-The same appearance has been since observed near Cambridge, as numerous witnesses can testify, and precisely under similar meteorological circumstances. The stars were, if possible, even more perfect in their forms than at Petersburg. This happened Jan. 16, at half-past ten A.M. during the year of the publication of this Volume. An account of it appeared in the Cambridge Chronicle.

"Ex

P. 26, 1. 8, 9. Brought with them the pictures of the Saints."-Broniovius, in his account of the city of Chersonesus, has afforded historical evidence of the fact. illo monasterio duas portas æris Corinthii,.... et Imagines insigniores..... Kioviam deportavisse." Martini Broniovii Tartaria. L. Bat. 1630. The words Imagines insigniores can only apply to pictures: the Greek Church admitted idols of no other form.

66

P. 153. Note (1.) "It was founded, according to Augustine, in 1653, during the reign of ALEXIS."-The discordant accounts which have been published of the age of this bell are owing to a circumstance I neglected to notice: it has been more than once founded. The first cast was made in the reign of Boris Gudenof, and injured by a fire. The Empress ANNE, in 1737, caused it to be re-founded, with considerable augmentation of metal, when it was again damaged by fire. This explains the cause of the different statements made, concerning its weight and age, by different authors; and accounts for the figure of the Empress ANNE IVANOVNA upon its exterior surface.

P. 199, last line of text: "A distinction of dialect.”]— According to the classification of the Sclaves by Schlazer, preserved in the Notes to Storch's Tableau de la Russie, tom. I. p. 15, that people admit of a seven-fold division; they were either Russians, Poles, Bohemians, Vendians, Illyrians, Hungarians, or Turks Perhaps I may some day be permitted to discuss the interesting subject of the origin of these and other nations, where its introduction will be less extraneous. The three great progenitors, the Tahtar, the Arab, and the Goth', have transmitted to their progeny the clearest and most decisive marks of the sources whence they were derived. It is singular, that, from their opposite and devious track, the descendants of those families have all found their way to Europe. The Geta, established by right of long possession, were found concentered as a nucleus, when the Sclavi and the Moors, by the most remote and unconnected operations, possessed themselves of the borders.

P. 339, 1. 22. "It bore then, as it does now, the name of Danaetz."-Observations of a similar nature may have been suggested to the compilers of the account of Muscovy, published in Holland, at the Elzevir Press, in 1630; as appears by the following passage: " Est et alter Tanaïs Minor, qui in Siberiensi Ducatu oriens (unde Dunecz Severski vocatur) supra Azoph in Tanaïm Magnum descendit." Descript. Muscoviæ, p. 8. L. Bat. ex Off. Elzev. 1630.

P. 348, 1.21. "The name Axay is a Tahtar word."-The initial of this word is properly a diphthong, common in Sweden,

(1) By Goths, I would not be understood to mean the Barbarians who invaded the Roman Empire from the East; but the more antient descendants of the Geta, who, crossing the Dardanelles, peopled Thrace, and were the origin, not only of the Teutonic tribes, but of the Greeks : “In paucis remanent Graiæ vestigia linguæ : Hæc quoque jam Getico barbara facta sono.”

Ovid. Trist. lib. v. Eleg. VII.

« السابقةمتابعة »