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O-tt 7iS>3.X 






Senator Jhm Massachusetts 




Fboh 1876 TO 1880 



1876 TO 1880 


11 Y 

0. K. 










All rfjhti reifrx((i 

otx .'^(j^.^*'^ 

^uATv/nxA/ |<x^^ 

Co iHgt yitmoij of 


the fuust bu8sian voluntbbb killbd ik bbbvia 

July {^ 1876 


Little more than two years ago, when a war with 
Russia seemed probable and even imminent, a book 
was pubUshed in London explaining the view of the 
Russians themselves on the cause of their quarrel 
with Turkey. The writer, a Russian lady, described 
herself only under the initials O. K. : and as under 
these circumstances an introduction of some kind was 
thought desirable, at the request of the authoress I 
wrote a few words of preface to this book. I was 
the more wilUng to do it, because as far back as 
the Crimean War I was one of the few Englishmen 
who considered that for us to quarrel with Russia in 
defence of the Ottoman Empire was impolitic and 
useless, and that so far from simplifying the problems 
which were coming upon us, not in Turkey only, but 
throughout Asia, it would enormously increase them. 
When the Emperor Nicholas spoke of the Turk as 
the sick man, for whose approaching end he invited 
us to assist him in making preparation, it appeared to 

viii Preface, 

me that he was speaking the truth, and that to 
refuse to acknowledge it would prove as futile in the 
long run as the denial of any other fact of nature. 
Fact, as always happens, had asserted itself. The 
sick man's state could no longer be questioned by the 
most obstinate incredulity. But the provisions which 
the Emperor Nicholas desired had not been made. 
The European conflict which he foresaw would follow 
from the absence of it, was on the point of breaking 
out; and small as the prospect of peace appeared 
when the Russians were advancing upon Con- 
stantinople, I was glad to be able to assist, in how- 
ever slight a degree, the courageous lady who was 
pleading the cause of the Slavs before the English 

The danger is no longer immediate. The Bussian 
army and the English fleet were almost within the 
range of each other's guns : a mistaken telegram or 
the indiscretion of a commander on either side might 
have precipitated a collision, and all Asia, and per- 
haps Europe also, would at this moment have been in 

The moderation of Russia prevented so frightful 
a calamity. The Treaty of San Stefano was modified, 
and the Englisli Cabinet, if it won no victory in war, 
was able to boast, with or without reason, of a dip- 
lomatic triumph. Continental statesmen could no 
longer speak of the eflacement of England as a 

Preface. ix 

European Power. England had shown that she had 
the will and strength to interfere where she chose 
and when she chose. But the question remains 
whether our interference answered a useful purpose, 
or whether in effect we had proved more than a boy 
proves who shows that he cannot be prevented from 
laying a bar across a railway, and converting a useful 
express train into a pile of splinters and dead bodies. 

Happily the common sense of Europe and the 
large minority of right-minded Englishmen had 
forbidden a repetition of the follies which accom- 
panied the Crimean war. No cant could be listened 
to at Berlin about the integrity and independence of 
the Ottoman Empire. No English Prime Minister 
could affect to believe in Turkish progress, except as 
progress to destruction. A war might still have 
risen from the disappointment of the English Cabinet 
at the turn which events had taken, had not Bussia 
surrendered something that she had won. But the 
purpose for which she had interposed m Turkey 
was substantially accompUshed. No more Bashi 
Bazouks and Circassian hyenas will massacre Chris- 
tian men in Bulgaria and dishonour Christian 

In Europe the power of the Ottoman is gone to a 
shadow. In Asia, in spite of our protests, we have 
been oui-selves obhged to undertake that it shall be 
no longer abused as it has been. For the time there 

X Preface, 

is a respite, and we cau breathe again. But the death- 
rattle is in the Ottoman's throat. The end is close 
upon us. In a few years at most, a dozen questions 
as hard as the Bulgarian will be pressing for a settle- 
ment. So far as Europe is concerned, the Eastern 
policy of the Cabinet has not been a success. Sir 
Henry Layard would not pretend that the Bussian 
and Turkish war had terminated as he hoped that it 
would terminate. The English people themselves, in 
their own consciences, know that it has not. Their 
warlike propensity had been roused. They hoped to 
have fought Bussia nearer home, and, to allay their 
disappointment, a demonstration against Bussia, which 
turned into a war, has been got up in Afghanistan. 
This adventure also has not been wholly prosperous, 
and it promises ill for the future. Wliat is to be the 
end of this determined animosity against the Bussians, 
and what are we to gain by it? What harm can 
Bussia do us, unless we go out of our way to attack 
her? She cannot invade us at home : no sane person, 
not Sir Henry EawUnson himself, imagines that she can 
invade us in India. We are not wild enough to covet 
the barren steppes which form her costly, unfruitful, 
uninviting Asiatic Empire. Is it necessary to our 
self-esteem that we must have some imaginary enemy 
wliom we must always be defying and quarrelling 
with ? and that we select Russia, because of all the 
Great Powers she is the one which we think cim least 

Preface. xi 

materially hurt us ? A thoughtful consideration of 
our relative positions will suggest a different con- 

Eussia and England are not likely to come into 
collision in Europe. The Great Powers who might 
themselves be involved will forbid it for their own 
sakes. In Asia we stand side by side as the repre- 
sentatives of Western civilisation, and on the attitude 
which we assume to one another the future condition 
of that enormous Continent may be said to depend. It 
is for us and for us alone to decide whether we are 
to be aDies or enemies. K we can act in concert, if 
we can dismiss our jealousies, take each other's hands 
and be friends, the position of each of us will grow 
stronger, and along with it our power of doing good. 
Civihsation will advance on an even course, bringing 
with it industry and good government, and the 
Asiatic races will have reason to bless us, as the 
bearers among them of peace and prosperity. K, on 
the other hand, the spirit is to be permanent which 
has guided our Eastern pohcy for the last four years 
and has been so generally prevalent in England, then 
these wretched myriads of people (amounting — ^if we 
include the Chinese, who will not long escape^to 
half the human race) will be simply torn in pieces 
as a carcase between us, till they learn to hate, and 
justly hate, the very name of the civilisation which 
will have brought misery so infinite upon them. 

xii Preface. 

Which of these two courses is to be chosen, 
depends upon England. Bussia has long sought an 
Englisli alliance. She has sacrificed her interests, 
she has sacrificed her pride ; she has stooped, perhaps, 
below her rank as a Great Power in suing for it. We 
still hold off, and are cold and suspicious. Is it be- 
cause Russia is aggressive ? we are more aggressive. 
Is Russia without a Constitutional Government and 
therefore not to be trusted ? We govern two hundred 
million subjects in India, to whom we do not dream 
of giving a Constitution. Is it because Russia does 
not observe her engagements? That may be our 
opinion ; but ask a Russian, or, for that matter, any 
foreign statesman, whether we more accurately 
observe ours. Nations can never be friends while 
each insists on the other's faults and is blind to its 
own : — 

Qui ne tuberibus propriis offendat amicum 
Postulate ignoscat yerrucis lUinA. 

If we act Otherwise, it can only be because we 
have no wish to be friends with Russia. And why 
should we not be friends with her? Is it because 
we Islanders are so independent, that we will brook 
neither rival nor companion on any road which we 
choose to follow, and that l)eing established in Asia 
we must have Asia to ourselves ? Such a feeUng no 
doubt is to be found in large masses of Englishmen. 
I cannot pay our Premier or his colleagues so bad 

Preface, xiii 

a compliment as to suspect them of sharing it. They 
know well that if we were inflated with so vain an 
ambition, this great Empire of ours would burst 
like an air bubble. It is hard to credit, either, that 
the English Tory party really believes that Bussian 
autocracy is dangerous to rational liberty. The love 
of the Tory party for Uberty has not hitherto been of 
so violent a kind. My own early years were spent 
among Tories, and Bussia I heard spoken of among 
them as the main support that was left of sound 
principles of government. Docile as they are under 
the educating hand of their chief, the country gentle- 
men of England cannot have fallen into their present 
attitude towards Bussia on political conviction. I 
interpret their action as no more than a passing 
illustration of the working of Government by party. 
Having obtained power they wish to keep it. They 
have seen an opportunity of making themselves 
popular by large talk about English dignity, and by 
appeals to the national susceptibihty. The interests 
of Europe, the interests of Asia, have been simply 
used as cards and counters in a game, where the 
stake played for is the majority at the next election. 

Alas, the real stake in this reckless adventure is 
the future position of England itself. The world will 
understand and partly tolerate a selfish poUcy if it 
is really a national poUcy. The world will scarcely 
be satisfied to find its interests trifled with, that Tory 

xiv Preface. 

or Liberal may rule in Downing Street. It is to be 
hoped therefore that EngUsh people, who prefer 
their country to the factions which divide it, will 
endeavour for themselves to examine the questions 
supposed to be at issue between ourselves and Eussia 
with more care than they have hitherto bestowed on 
them. We can understand nothing till we have 
looked at both sides of it. Thus, it is with no com- 
mon pleasure that I commend to my countrymen 
the new volume with which this Eussian lady again 
presents us. For her own sake I could have wished 
that some weightier person than myself should have 
written a preface for her, if preface was needed, but 
it is as well perhaps that her book should appeal to 
our attention on its own merits, rather than through 
the authority of some powerful name. 

The writer, known to us hitherto only as 0. K., 
fills out her initials for herself, and tells us that she is 
one of a family whose noblest representatives have 
devoted themselves for the Slavonian cause. She 
alludes to her eldest brother, General Kir^ff, now 
on the Staff of the Grand Duke Constantine, and a 
raost active member of the Slavonian Committee. 
The story of the second which resembles a l^end of 
some mythic Eoman patriot or mediaeval Crusader, 
the reader will find told, as no other English writer 
could tell it, by Mr. Kinglake. Tender the influence 
of the same passionate patriotism which sent her 

Preface. xv 

brother to his death, the sister has laboured year 
after year in England, believing that, however misled, 
we are a generous people at heart, and that, if we really 
knew the objects at which Bussia was aiming, we should 
cease to suspect or thwart them. Her self-imposed 
task has been so hard that only enthusiasm could 
have carried her through it. We, in our present 
humour, believing that the world is governed wholly 
by selfish interests, have forgotten that there were 
times in our own history, and those the times best 
worth remembering, when interest was nothing to 
us, and some cause which we considiBred holy was 
everything. Among those of us who have heard of 
this lady many have regarded her as a secret instru- 
ment of the Bussian Court, and persons who have 
held such an opinion about her ar^ unlikely to 
change it, however absurd it may be, for any words 
of mine. By those who can still appreciate noble 
and generous motives, the Kir^ffs will be recognised 
as belonging to the exceptional race of mortals who 
form the forlorn hopes of mankind, who are perhaps 
too quixotic, but to whom history makes amends by 
consecrating their memories. 

The object of this book is to exhibit our own 
conduct to us, during the past four years, as it 
appears to Bussian eyes. If we disclaim the portrait 
we shall still gain something by looking at it, and 
some few of us may be led to reflect, that if Bussia is 


xvi Preface. 

mistaken in her judgment of England, we may be our- 
eelves as much mistaken in our judgment of Bussia. 
As to execution and workmanship, no foreigner who 
has attempted to write in the EngUsh language has 
ever, to my knowledge, shown more effective command 
of it. 0. K. plays with our most complicated idioms, 
and turns and twists and points her sarcasms with a 
skill which many an accomplished English authoress 
might despair of imitating. She seems to have read 
every book that has been written, and every notable 
speech which has been uttered, on the Eastern ques- 
tion, for the last half century. Far from bearing us 
ill will, she desires nothing so much as a hearty 
alliance between her coimtry and ours. She protests 
justly against the eagerness with which every wild 
story to Bussia's disadvantage obtains credit among 
us, and against the wilful embittering of relations 
which ought to be friendly and cordial. 

She tells us that Bussia has spared no effort, short 
of the sacrifice of honour and duty, to humour our 
prejudices or consider our interests. If it is aU in 
vain, if we persist in meeting the advances of Bussia 
with ill will, in misrepresenting her policy, and in 
crossing and denouncing it when it is identical with 
the policy which we pursue for ourselves under 
analogous circumstances, she warns us that we may 
desire Bussia's friendship hereafter and may not find 
it. There will grow up in her people a correspond- 

Preface, xvii 

ing feeling of settled resentment, and in the end a 
determined antagonism. 

We are now at the parting of the ways : it is for 
us to choose what the future is to be ; and in choosing 
let us bear this in mind, that there runs through the 
afiairs of men a slow-moving but sure and steady 
tide of justice, which even steam-driven ironclads will 
find in the end that they cannot overcome. When 
the drama, which is to be acted, is on so vast a scale, 
it is not the will of one nation which will be able to 
prevail, still less the will of one party in that nation. 
Therefore those who most wish to see England con- 
tinue great and strong and honoured as it has been 
honoured in the past, must embrace in their thoughts 
some wider object than immediate seeming advan- 
tage or partisan success, if they would have their 
country in the place which they desire for it when 
the curtain falls upon the play which is now opening. 

With these few words I recommend this excellent 
book to the attention of my countrymen. 

J. A. Fboude. 







I. Introductory 3 

II, The Two Bcssias : Moscow and St. Petersburg 8 

III. Secret Societies and the War.— Mr. Aksa- 

koff's Speech on the Servian War • . 18 

rv. Gross and Crescent 40 

V. Before the Fall of Plevna. — Mr. Aksakoff*s 

Address on Russian Disasters . . . 45 

VI. The Bulgarians and their Liberators . . 61 

\1I, After Plevna 70 

VIII. English Neutrality : 7 

IX. On the Eve of the Congress . . . . 88 

X. After the Congress. — Mr. Aksakoff's Speech 

ON Russian Concessions .... 95 

XL Divided Bulgaria Ill 


PAKT 11. 


CHAFTia PAttl 

I. Lord Salisbury as Herald Angel . . .123 

II. The Anglo-Turkish Convention . . . 134 

III. The Heirs of < the Sick Man ' . . . 142 

IV. *The Last Word of the Eastern Question' . 160 



I. Some English Prejudices . . . .181 

II. Poland and Circassl^ 196 

III. Siberia 209 

IV. Russian Autocracy 223 

V. Constitutionalism in Russia .... 239 

VI. The Attempt on the Emperor . . . 252 



I. Friends or Foes ? 263 

II. England's * Traditional Police' ' . . . 272 
III. Russia and Engush Parties .... 277 

Contents. xxi 


IV. Russia's Foreign Poucy, — A Reply to Mb. 
Gladstone. — Letter from M. Ebule de 

Laveleye 290 

V. Russian Aggression 321 


VII. Russians in Central Asia .... 346 

VIII. Traditional Poucy of Russia . . . . 362 

IX. Some Last Words 367 

Appendix .• . . 371 

Index 379 

'^Portrait TofaceTUle. 


^ Bulgaria : Ethnological and Political. 

«^The Three Bulgarias; Constantinople, 
San Stefano, and Berlin. 

To face p. 120 



















Constantinople may be the last word of the Eastern 
Question, but it is certainly not the first. 

For a good understanding between England and 
Russia the first thing needful is to clear up the mis- 
understanding about the origin of the recent war in 
the East. If it were true, as our enemies assert, that 
the Russian Government deliberately planned the 
war, in order to pursue a policy of plunder, so far 
from attempting to justify its action in the English 
press, as a patriotic Russian, I should sympathise with 
those who denounced a Government guilty of so grave 
an international crime. 

But the assertion is a baseless calumny. Even if 
there were, as has been so frequently asserted, under- 
standings between the three Emperors as to the re- 
arrangement of territory in the East on the natural 
break up of the Ottoman Empire, of which I know 
nothing, that is a very difierent thing from a deter- 
mination to make war in order to partition * Turkey.' 
It would merely be a statesmanlike concert prialable 
in view of a probable contingency, such, as I am free 

B 2 

4 The Russian People and the War. 

to confess, I would very much desire to see established 
among the Powers to-day. 

Between such an understanding, entered into in 
order to minimise the disastrous consequences which 
would in any case follow the collapse of the Ottoman 
Empire, and a determination to go to war to bring 
about that collapse, there is a wide gulf fixed. 

Russian diplomacy, as your Blue Books prove, 
laboured assiduously to prevent the overthrow of the 
Turkish Power. The attitude of the Russian Govern- 
ment was thus clearly and accurately defined by 
Prince Gortschakoff to Count Schouvaloff, in a de- 
spatch from Ems, -^^ June, 1876 : — 

* From the commencement of the troubles in the 
East our august Master's sole aim has been to check 
their spread and to prevent a general conflagration in 
Turkey. We, like Mr. Disraeli, have no belief in the 
indefinite duration of the abnormal state of things we 
see in the Ottoman Empire. But, as yet, nothing is 
prepared to replace it, and were it suddenly to fall, 
there would be a risk of catastrophes, both in the 
East and in Europe (et sa chute subite risquerait 
d'ebranler TOrient et TEurope). Thus it is desirable 
to maintain the political status quo by a general 
improvement in the lot of the Christian populations, 
which appeared, and still appears, an indispensable 
condition of the existence of the Ottoman Empire. 
. . . . The success of the diplomatic action in 
which we were associated depended on the unanimity 
of the Cabinets. In default of this unanimity, which 
alone could restrain the passions raging in the East, 

Introductory, 5 

an explosion was foreseen, and we have not had long 
to wait for it. At the present moment, as was the 
case eight months ago, we see no reason for desiring 
a decisive crisis in the East, because matters are not 
sufficiently ripe for settlement. We are ready to 
welcome any idea which the London Cabinet may 
communicate to us for securing the pacification of the 
East. We sincerely desire a good understanding with 
them/ ^ 

A week later, Count Schouvaloflf explained to the 
Earl of Derby the views of the Russian Government 
as to the pacification of the East. * With regard to 
the remedies to be applied to the present state of 
affairs,' writes Lord Derby to Lord Augustus Lofttts, 
* Prince Gortschakoff* agrees with me that these are 
the best which offer the most practical solution. For 
tliis reason the Russian Government incline to the plan 
of vassal and tributary autonomous States. Such an 
arrangement would not alter the poUtical and terri- 
torial status qaooi Turkey, while it would hghten the 
burdens which now exliaust the financial resources 
of the Porte.' 2 

The only difference between the policies af Eng- 
land and Russia was, that England ignored, while 
Russia recognised, the fact that a * genuine improve- 
ment of the condition of the Christian populations ' 
was really indispensable for the maintenance of the 
status quo. 

The internal and political status quo of the Otto- 
man Empire was incompatible with the maintenance 

» Blue Book, Turkey, 3 (1876), p. 283. • Ibid., 3 (1876), p. 313. 

6 The Russian People and the War. 

of the territorial status quo in the East. Russia was 
ready to sacrifice the former to preserve the latter. 
England insisted on maintaining both, and as a conse- 
quence both were destroyed. 

A cordial co-operation on the part of the English 
Cabinet with the other Powers would have enabled 
the Russian Government to have restrained the forces, 
national, religious, and humanitarian, which, by the 
pro-Turkish policy of Lord Beaconsfield, were let 
loose on the Ottoman Empire. 

The * passionate desire for peace * which Lord 
Salisbury truly declared was the predominating 
feeling of our Emperor, was paralysed by the acqui- 
escence of European diplomacy in the obstinate 
refusal of the Turks to make any amelioration of the 
condition of their Christian subjects. The Emperor 
I told the English Ambassador that, * if Europe was 
' willing to receive these repeated rebufis from the 
Porte, he could no longer consider it as consistent 
either with the honour, the dignity or the interests of 
Russia. He was anxious not to separate from the 
European concert ; but the present state of things was 
intolerable and could not be allowed to continue, and 
unless Europe was prepared to act with firmness and 
energy, he should be compelled to act alone.' ^ 

Europe refused, and Russia acted. With the hesi- 
tation and reserve of Russian diplomacy, due, no 
doubt, largely to the intense desire of the Emperor 
for peace and the knowledge of the Government that 
they were quite unprepared for war — the Russian 

' BUie Book, Turkey, 1 (1877), p. 643. 

Introductory. 7 

people had no sympathy. While in your eyes the 
Eussian Government was eagerly pressing for the 
destruction of the Turks, the Russian nation was 
indignant at the restraint placed by its diplomacy 
upon the fulfilment of our national duty. 

To enable the English reader to look at the war 
from the Eussian point of view, and to realise the 
feelings of the Eussian people, I reproduce in these 
pages some letters, most of which I addressed to the 
Northern Ec/io in 1877 and 1878, together with two or 
tliree speeches of Mr. Aksakoflf, the President of the 
Moscow Slavonic Committee, making material addi- 
tions and alterations, in order to bring the narra- 
tive down to the present time. 

8 The Russian People and the War. 



* So the people who made the war are already repent- 
ing of their folly I * sneers a cynical politician, as he 
lays down the Times of last Wednesday, after perusing 
a letter from its St. Petersburg correspondent with the 
above heading. * Indeed ! ' I exclaim, with unfeigned 
surprise, * that is strange news. Who says so ? What 
is your authority ? * 

* The St. Petersburg correspondent of the TimeSy 
rejoins the cynic, * who, as the PaU Mali Gazette says, 
is known as the writer of a famous book on Bussia, 
which appeared some months ago — in other words, all 
but naming Mr. R. Mackenzie Wallace.' 

* And Mr. Wallace says the people who made the 
war are repenting of what they did,' I continue. 

* Where does he say so ? I don't see any such state- 
ment in his letter.' 

1 The Tiine» of Not. 14, 1877, paUiahed a letter from its correspon- 
dent in St. Petersburg, deecriliing a minoritj in the Russian capital as 
wearied of the war and anxious to make peace, regardless of the fate of 
the Southern Slavs. The PaU Mall OasutUf noticing his remarks under 
the suggestive heading ' Reported return of reason in Russia,' exulted in 
the hope that the Russians were about to abandon their heroic enterprise. 
This delusion can be removed most effectually by the simple statement of 
facts, too often ignored in England. 

The Two Russias. 9 

* Do you not ? ' he asks in amazement. * What can 
be plainer than his account of the regret with which 
the war, its objects, and its sacrifices are spoken of in 
St. Petersburg by men " who consider themselves 
good patriots ? " Here, for instance, he speaks of the 
statesman or official dignitary, the representative of 
the St. Petersburg Liberal press, and the commercial 
man, all of whose sentiments are faithfully reproduced. 
What more would you have as a proof that those who 
made the war are repenting in sackcloth and ashes of 
their Quixotic undertaking ? ' 

I could not help smiUng. *And so that is the 
evidence upon which you and Mr. Wallace build your 
theories of " peace possibilities in Eussia ! " These 
people — they did not make the war ! Not they, in 
deed I It was not these " patriots " to whose voices 
our Emperor gave ear I ' 

And so dismissing my Turkophile acquaintance, 
let me in a few sentences correct the false impression 
which that letter in the Times has produced, as the 
high character and deserved reputation of its author 
may mislead many. 

The English people were told last year, and truly 
told, that there are two Eussias. There is official 
Eussia, and national Eussia. There is, in a word, the 
Eussia of St. Petersburg, and the Eussia of Moscow.^ 
Now, the Times correspondent Uves in St. Petersburg, 

' An EngUsh lady residing in Moscow from 1876 to 1878, described 
with simple fidelity the enthusiasm prevailing in the ancient capital of 
Russia, in a series of letters to the Daily News and to the Northern Echo, 
which Messrs. Remington & Co. republished in a volume — Sketches of 
Runian lAfe and CustoniSf by Selwyn Eyre. 

» > . 

10 The Russian People and the War, 

and he transmits faithfuUy enough to England his im- 
pressions of public opinion in St. Petersburg. The 
only danger is that his readers may mistake St. Peters- 
burg for Eussia. But St. Petersburg, thank God ! is 
not Eussia, any more than the West-end of London is 
England. The whole course of European history, for 
the last two years, would be utterly incomprehensible 
on the contrary hypothesis. It was because foreigners 
took their impression of Eussia from St. Petersburg 
that they blundered so grossly about the course which 
events would take in the East, and they will blunder 
not less grossly if, disregarding the lessons of the past, 
they once more entertain the hollow fallacy that the 
national opinion of Eussia can be ascertained in the 
salons of St. Petersburg or by interviewing official 
personages on the banks of the Neva. 

There are good men and true in St. Petersburg, 
as there are good men and true even in the clubs of 
PaU Mall ; but the typical St. Petersburger, of whom 
Mr. Wallace writes, is as destitute of faith and of 
enthusiasm as the West-ender. But just as you say 
London is Turkophile, although many Londoners are 
anti-Turks, so we say St. Petersburg is anti-Slav. 
But then it must not be forgotten that St. Petersburg 
is not Eussia. Peter the Great styled it * a window 
out of which Eussia could look upon the Western 
world ; ' but it is not a window by which the Western 
•world can look in upon Eussia. No, St. Petersburg 
is not Eussian I It is cosmopolitan. It is not vitalised 
with the fierce warm current of Eussia's life-blood. 
It stands ai)art. It undoubtedly exercises,/ a^great 

The Two Russias, 11 

influence in ordinary times, but at great crises it is 
powerless. St. Petersburg did its best to avert the 
war. It sneered at our Servian volunteers — ^nay, if it 
had had its way it would have arrested them as male- 
factors. Those who went first to Servia on their 
heroic mission were compelled to smuggle themselves 
as it were out of the country for fear of the interfer- 
ence of oflScialdom supreme at St. Petersburg. St. 
Petersburg would, if it could, have suppressed our 
Slav Committees, and it did its best to induce our 
generous Emperor to violate that knightly word which 
he pledged at Moscow, amid the unbounded enthusi- 
asm of all his subjects, to take up the cause of the 
Slavs, * although he had to take it up alone.' In the 
midst of the great uprising of the nation occasioned 
by the Bulgarian atrocities and the Servian war, St. 
Petersburg was comparatively unmoved — a mere dead 
cold cinder in the midst of the glowing warmth of 
our national revival. All the diplomatic negotiations 
which preceded the war are inexplicable unless this 
is borne in mind. My countrymen, rising in the 
sacred wrath kindled by the inexpiable wrongs in- 
flicted upon their kinsmen, pressed sternly, steadily 
onward to redress these wrongs, to terminate for ever 
the status guo^ which rendered them chronic, inevit- 
able. Official Eussia, unable to arrest the movement 
entirely, nevertheless attempted, and attempted in 
vain, to divert it by diplomatic contrivances. We had 
one device after another invented in rapid succession 
to avoid the war by which alone our brethren coidd 
be freed. It is humiUating to recall the tortuous 

12 The Russian People and the War. 

windiDgs of Russian diplomacy, the inexhaustible ex- 
pedients by which the Petersburg party endeavoured 
to balk the fulfilment of the national aspirations.^ 

The last of these was the Protocol I By that famous 
document official Bussia consented, for the sake of the 
European concert and the peace of the Continent, to 
postpone indefinitely all action on behalf of the South- 
em Slavs, receiving in return for this sacrifice of her 
mission a promise that the Great Powers would watch 
the Turks, and after a period of time, not particularly 
specified, when it liad once more, for the thousandth 
time, been demonstrated to the satisfaction even of 
the diplomatic mind that Turkish domination is utterly 
incapable of reform, improvement, or other ameliora- 
tion than its total destruction, the Powers promised — 
oh, great concession ! — to consider what should then 
be done to save our tortured brethren from the Otto- 
man horde. This was the patent St. Petersburg 
device for disappointing the hopes of the Russian 
people, and eagerly these officials, representatives of 
the Liberal press, and commercial men, who are now 
prating of peace to the Times correspondent, hoped 

' In the Memoirs of Baron Stockmar occur some observatioos about 
diplomacy and diplomatists which are often too true : — * Diplomatists are 
for the most part a frivolous, superficial and rather ignorant set of people, 
whose first object is to lull matters to sleep for a few years, and to patch 
up things for a time. The distant future troubles them but litUe. 
They console themselves with such maxims as '' Alors coomie alors,** 
<' sufiScient unto the day is the evil thereof.*' With statesmen of this 
kind it is sorry work discussing the conditions of a new political crea- 
tion to be carried out under difficult circumstances. They have no real 
conception what work of this kind means. To those who point out the 
difficulties, they reply, '' It wiU all come right in time,** or they attempt 
to throw dust in the eyes by vague promises.' — Baron Stochnm^s Memoirs, 
vol. i. p. 121. 

The Two Russias. 13 

that it would stave off what they are deriding now as 
the * Quixotic enterprise ' of the War of Liberation. 
In Moscow, however — ^that great heart of the Russian 
Empire — the suspense occasioned by the negotiations 
about the Protocol was one longdrawn-out agony. 
Those who lived in the very heart of the national 
movement can never forget the terrible forebodings 
of those dismal days. We all moved under the pres- 
sure of a great dread. Was it to end thus? Were 
all our sacrifices to be sacrificed ? was the blood of 
our martyrs spilt in vain? Was Holy Russia Holy 
Eussia no more, but a mere appanage to cosmopolitan 
St. Petersburg ? When the news came that the Eng- 
lish Cabinet was insisting upon alterations, we breathed 
more freely. * Demobilisation I ' we cried. * No, it is 
not demobilisation ; it is demoralisation ! The Emperor 
is too noble, too good a Russian ; he will never con- 
sent to that I ' But, then, again the news came that 
even that was to be accepted ; and the sky grew very 
dark overhead, and we went about as if in the chamber 
of death, speaking in low accents and oppressed by a 
terrible fear of that national dishonour which we Rus- 
sians, strange as it may appear to some people, dread 
even more than death 1 At last, to our great relief, 
the cloud lifted, the darkness disappeared, for the 
Turks rejected the Protocol ; and the declaration of 
war was as grateful to us as the bright burst of sun- 
light in the east after a long, dark, stormy night. 

And here may I venture, as a Russian, to say that, 
in securing by his provisoes the rejection of the Pro- 
tocol by the Turks, Lord Derby has at least done one 

14 The Russian People and the War, 

good thing at the English Foreign OflBce. He may 
not have Intended it, but, as a matter of fact, he was 
our most efficient ally. But for him St. Petersburg 
might have triumphed. Russia might have been dis- 
graced, and the Turks might have received a new 
lease of power. The Slav world has reason to thank 
him for having secured the victory of our cause by 
rendering it impossible for Russia to refrain from 
drawing the sword in the cause of the Southern 

Even St. Petersburg could not shrink from the 
contest after that last deadly blow was administered 
by the Turks to the schemes of the diplomatists. 
The war began. It is going on, and it will go on 
until the end is accomplished. No babble of St. 
Petersburg will now be able to bring that war to a 
dishonourable close ; and no peace can be honourable 
that does not secure the object of the war. St. 
Petersburg is even worse than usual just now. Its 
best elements are in Bulgaria and Roumania. The 
Emperor is there, and the sight of the fiendish atroci- 
ties perpetrated by the Turks upon our patient 
soldiers can only confirm his resolution to persevere 
* until the end.' And behind him there stands, 
arrayed as one man, the whole Russian nation, ready 
to endure any sacrifices rather than leave the Turk 
to re-establish his desolating sovereignty over our 

Is it so strange to Enghshmen that there should 
be two Russias ? Are there not two Englands ? The 
England that is true to EngUsh love for liberty, and 

The Two Russias. 15 

the England that sees in liberty itself only a text for 
a sneer ? There is the England of St. James's Hall 
and the England of the Guildhall. An England with 
a soul and a heart, and an England which has only a 
pocket. In other words, there is the England of Mr. 
Gladstone and the England of Lord Beaconsfield. We 
Russians, too, have our sordid cynics, but they are in 
a minority. They may sneer, but they cannot rule ; 
and, with that distinction, let me conclude by saying 
that these St. Petersburg Tchinovniksy whose views Mr. 
Wallace reproduces, are now what they have always 
been, the Beaconsfields of Russia I 

The above letter was written in the middle of 
November, 1877. 

Eightly to understand the genuine spontaneity of 
the national Slavonic movement which forced our 
Government into a war at a time when they were 
notoriously unprepared for such an enterprise, it was 
necessary to have resided in Russia when the news of 
the rising of the Christians in the Balkans stirred the 
national heart to its depths. Whatever doubts might 
prevail outside Russia, no one, be he ever so preju- 
diced, who witnessed the explosion of national and 
religious enthusiasm which shook Russia from her 
centre to her circumference, could deny the reality 
and spontaneity of the all prevailing sentiment, the 
fervour of which our officials in vain endeavoured to 
abate. Even the English Ambassador was impressed 
by the unprecedented spectacle of a torrent of enthu- 
siasm, sweeping away an entire people. Writing to 


16 The Russian People and the War. 

the Earl of Derby, from St. Petersbiirg, on August 16, 
1876, he says : — 

The enthusiasm for the cause of the Servians and Chris- 
tian Slavs is daily increasing here. The feeling is universal, 
and it pervades all classes from the Crown to the peasant. 
The sympathy of the masses has been roused by the atroci- 
ties which have been committed in Bulgaria, and bears a 
religious and not a political character. 

Public collections are being made for the sick and 
wounded. Officers with the ^ Red Cross,' and ladies of the 
Court and of society go from house to house requesting sub- 
scriptions. At the railway stations, on the steam-boats, even 
in the carriages of the tramways, the ^ Bed Cross ' is present 
everywhere, with a sealed box for donations. Every stimu- 
lant, even to the use of the name of the Empress, is resorted 
to, with a view to animate feelings of compassion for the 
sufifering Christians and to swell the funds for providing 
ambulances for the sick and wounded. 

I am informed that such is the excitement in favour of 
the Christians that workmen are leaving to join the Servian 
army. Within the last fortnight seventy-five officers of the 
Guards have announced their intention to accept service in 
the Servian army, and it is reported that 120 officers at 
Moscow and in Southern Bussia are on the point of leaving 
to join the Servian ranks. 

I have also received private information that 20,000 
Cossacks are going to Servia in disguise to join the Servian 

The number is probably greatly exaggerated, but the 
fact of a considerable number of Cossacks having volunteered 
for service in aid of the Christians is undoubtedly true. 

The religious feeling of the Bussian nation is deeply 
roused in favour of their Christian Slav brethren, while the 
impassioned tone of the press is daily exciting the popular 

From the foregoing symptoms it might be feared that 

The Two Rtissias. 17 

should any fresh atrocities occur to influence the public 
mind, neither the Emperor nor Prince GortschakoflF would be 
able to resist the unanimous appeal of the nation for inter- 
vention to protect and save their co-religionists.* 

Lord Augustus Loftus inclosed an extract from a 
letter published in the Moscow Gazette, from a * Eetired 
Cossack,' who writes from the capital of the Cossacks 
of the Don. The writer, describing the state of ex- 
citement in which he found the Cossacks, says : — 

Even women, old men and children speak of nothing but 
the Slavonic war ; the warlike spirit of the Cossacks is on 
fire, and from small to great they all await permission 
to fall on the Turks like a whirlwind. At many of the 
settlements the Cossacks are getting their arms ready, 
with a full conviction that in a few days the order will 
be given to fall on the enemies of the Holy Faith, and 
of their Slav brethren. There is at the same time a general 
murmuring against diplomacy for its dilatoriness in com- 
ing to the rescue. Deputies have arrived from many of the 
Cossack settlements to represent to the Ataman that the 
Cossacks are no longer able to stand the extermination of 
the Christians.^ 

There is abundance of similar testimonies in your 
Blue Book. 

Those who are not satisfied with official testi- 
monies, will find unofficial confirmation of the reality 
of the popular movement in the pages of Mr. D. 
Mackenzie Wallace's * Russia,' ^ a work which is cer- 
tainly not characterised by too great a partiality to- 
wards us. 

1 Turkey, 1 (1877), No. 66, pp. 44-6. 
* Und., Incloeure in No. 66, pp. 46-6. ■ Vol. ii. p. 463. 

18 The Russian People and the War. 



Lord Salisbury recently advised the victims of the 
baseless scare of a Russian invasion of India to buy 
large-sized maps and learn how insuperable are the 
obstacles which nature has placed between the land 
of the Tzar and the dominions of the Empress. 
Would it be too presumptuous in a Russian to express 
a wish that EngUshmen would pay a Uttle attention 
to the history of their own country in the days of the 
great Elizabeth, before attempting to pronounce an 
opinion upon the action of the Russian people in this 
war ? 2 Perhaps the discovery that only three cen- 
turies ago the heroism and enthusiasm of the English 
Protestants anticipated in Holland and France the 
course taken last year by the newly-awakened enthu- 
siasm of the Russian people in Bulgaria and Servia 
would moderate the vehemence of their censure, even 
if it did not secure for my countrymen the sympathy 
which EngUshmen used to feel for those who are 

> This letter was written at the begfnniDg of Noyember, 1877. 

' Lord Salisbury, in 1879, speaking at Hatfield, said Lord Beaoon*- 
field's Government had pursued a truly Elizabethan policy : a statement 
which probably was meant to be interpreted by the rule of contrary. 

Secret Societies and the War. 19 

willing to sacrifice all, even life itself, in the cause of 
Liberty and Eight. 

Without sympathy understanding is impossible. 
Prejudice closes the door against all explanation. 
But no one who had entered into the spirit of the 
times when Sir Philip Sydney went forth to fight in 
the Low Countries, and Francis Drake swept the 
Spanish Main, could possibly have made so many gro- 
tesque blunders as those which are to be found in 
most articles professing to describe Pan-Slavists and 
the Slav Committees. It is not very diflBicult to under- 
stand the source of their inspiration. Instead of 
ascertaining the objects of the Slavophils from their 
own lips, they repeat all the stupid calumnies where- 
with our enemies have vainly attempted to prejudice 
our Emperor against the Slav cause. That is not 
fair. K a Kussian writer were to describe the opera- 
tions of the Eastern Question Association and Mr. 
Gladstone from the slanders of the Enghsh Turko- 
philes, he would not err more from the truth than do 
those Enghsh writers who caricature the Slav Com- 
mittees by repeating the calumnies of some of our 
official enemies, 

* The Slav Committees,' it is said, * have brought 
about this war,' — an accusation of which I am proud, 
for the only alternative to war was a selfish abandon- 
ment of our Southern brethren to the merciless ven- 
geance of the Turks. ^ But when they say that we 

* ' It is when those Public Societies, which are called GoTernments 
fail in their duty and abdicate their proper functions^ that Secret Socie- 
ties find their opportunities of action.' — Duke of ArgyU, The Eastern 
Quettumy toL i. p. 273. 


20 The Russian People and the War. 

brought it about in order * to crush in Russia the 
present form of Government — ^the absolute rule of 
the Tzar/ they state that which is not only untrue, 
but what is known to be an absurdity by every Slavo- 
phile in Russia. The statement is even more absurd 
than the assertion made by Lord Beaconsfield that the 
Servian war was made by the Secret Societies. The 
Slavonic Committees are not secret, and they are cer- 
tainly not composed of Revolutionists. It used to be 
the reproach of the Slav party that it was in all 
things too Conservative. Now we are told that we 
are Radicals, who hate the present form of the Russian 
State. Both reproaches can hardly be true. As a 
matter of fact, both are false. Some writers charge 
Mr. Aksakoff with being, as President of the Moscow 
Committee, the head-centre of revolutionary Russia. 
As one of Mr. Aksakoff's numerous friends, I may be 
permitted to say that there never was a more mon- 
strous assertion. Mr. Aksakoff, although no courtier, 
is devotedly loyal. His wife was our Empress's lady- 
in-waiting, and governess to the Duchess of Edin- 
burgh ; and he himself, although abused in the 
Turkophile papers as a Russian Mazzini, is one of the 
last men in the world to undertake a crusade against 
the Tzardom. Simple, honest, enthusiastic, Mr. Ak- 
sakoff is no conspirator ; he is simply the leading 
spokesman of the Russian Slavs, by whom he was 
elected to the post of President of the Moscow Slavonic 
Committee with only one dissentient voice. Much 
surprise was expressed that there should be even one 
vote against his appointment. But that surprise was 

Secret Societies and the War. 21 

succeeded by a smile when it was announced that the 
sohtary dissentient was Mr. Aksakoff himself. So far 
from aiming at the destruction of the Eussian State, 
they aim at the much less ambitious and more useful 
task of emancipating their Southern brethren from 
Turkish oppression. There is no mystery about the 
operations of our Committees, There work is prosaic 
in the extreme. Brought into existence long ago by 
the operation of the same benevolent spirit wliich 
leads EngUsh people to send tracts to Fiji cannibals, 
these Committees laboured unnoticed and unseen 
until the close of 1875. At that time occurred the 
great revolt of the Southern Slavs against their 
Turkish despots ; and it is the pecuhar glory of the 
Slavonic Committees that they were able to give rapid 
effect to the enthusiasm kindled in Kussia by the story 
of the sufferings of our brethren, and, by sustaining 
the struggle for emancipation, were able to keep the 
condition of the Slavs before the Powers, until at last 
the Russian Government stepped in to free them from 
bondage. All Russia — Emperor, Government and all 
— became but one vast Slavonic Committee for the 
Uberation of the Southern Slavs ; and we have far 
less reason for wishing to destroy a State wliich has 
so nobly undertaken the heroic task of liberating our 
brethren than Englishmen have for desiring to upset 
their Parliamentary system which has enabled a Lord 
Beaconsfield to balk the generous aspirations expressed 
by the nation during the autumn of 1876. 

It is entirely false that to our Slav Committees 
belongs the honour of having originated the insurrec- 

22 The Russian People and the War. 

tion of the Herzegovina. After it b^an it attracted 
our attention, and we would have assisted it if we 
could, but, unfortunately, the Bussian people were 
not aroused, and there were next to no funds at 
our disposal to assist the heroic insurgents whose 
desperate resolve to achieve liberty or death on their 
native hills first compelled the Powers to face what 
Europe calls the Eastern Question, but what we call 
the Emancipation of the Slavs. The utmost that we 
could do in the first year of the insurrection was to 
collect rome 10,000/. for the relief of the refugees in 
the Herzegovina, Montenegro, and Eagusa. English 
sympathisers, notably Mr. Freeman, also collected 
contributions for the same cause. General Tcher- 
nayeff proposed in September to take fifty non-com- 
missioned officers to Monten^ro, with arms for five 
hundred men ; but he could not carry out his scheme 
because we had no funds. I state this as a matter of 
fact, which I regret. 

Proof of this melancholy fact can be had, I regret 
to say, in only too great abundance, but it will be 
sufficient here to refer the sceptical to the most 
interesting account of the rising in the Herzegovina 
by Mr. W. J. Stillman, who was correspondent of the 
Times in that region during the insurrection, in which 
he will find ample confirmation of my confession that 
our Russian Committees could not claim the honour of 
having encouraged the Herzegovinese at the first to 
strike that blow for freedom which led to the ruin of 
the Ottoman Empire. Russian influence at first was 
an influence of constraint. It was not until December 

Secret Societies and tJie War. 23 

1875, that the Slavonic sympathies of the Bussians 
were felt in the Herzegovina.^ 

It is the duty of free Slavs to assist their enslaved 
brethren to throw off the yoke of bondage. Our war 
may be condemned, but the heroism of our volunteers 
is appreciated even by those who support the 
Turks. Can Englishmen wonder that we Eussians, 
brethren in race and in religion to the Bayahs of 
Northern Turkey, should endeavour to assist them as 
the English of Elizabeth's reign endeavoured to assist 
the Protestants of Holland and of France ? But the 
fact that we would glory in assisting our enslaved 
brethren to throw off the yoke of the Turk should 
entitle us to be believed when we sorrowfully admit 
that, as a matter of fact, we have no claim to the credit 
of having fomented the insurrection which every one 
now can see was a death-blow to the domination of 
the Ottoman. It was not till after the insurrection 
had made considerable progress — not, in fact, until 
the atrocities in Bulgaria and the Servian war — that 
Bussia awoke and assumed the liberating mission 
which, after great and terrible sacrifices, promises at 
last to be crowned with complete success. 

It is a mistake to say, that our Bussian volunteers 
in Servia were paid. It is also false that 9,000 
Bussians went to Servia. We could only find the 
travelling expenses of 4,000 ; none of whom received 
any other pay, but all of whom were eagerly ready to 
die for the cause. One-third of them perished as 
martyrs, but their blood has not been shed in vain. 

' See Herzegovina and (he laic Uprisingy p. 101. 

24 The Raman People and the War. 

Their death sealed the doom of the Turks. The 
Emperor has undertaken the championship of the 
Slavonic cause, and the war will only end when the 
liberation of the Southern Slavs is complete. So far 
from desiring the war to destroy the Tzardom, we 
were never so proud of Bussia as we are to-day ; never 
were we so unanimously and enthusiastically united 
in support of our heroic Emperor, who, after 
liberating twenty-three millions of serfs at home, is 
now crowning his reign with glory by emancipating 
the Southern Slavs. 

In the foregoing letter I have referred to Mr. 
Aksakoff. It is better that he should speak for him- 
self. Here-is^ /« » condensed translation of the speech 
which l^cleuvered, 'on November 6, 1876, before the 
Moscow Slavonic Committee, which I published in 
English in the same month. I may preface it with 
one sentence from Mr. Wallace's * Eussia,' endorsing 
it heartily. * As to the authenticity of the testimony, I 
may add, that I have known Mr. Aksakoff, and have 
never in any country met a more honest and truthful 
man.' ^ Mr.- Aksakoff said : — 

It may be thought that the hour has at last arrived 
for Bussia to resign into the hands of the State this great 
and important work, which during so many months the 
people have carried on with incredible exertion, without 
any help or co-operation from the Government. I do 
not speak here of the help afforded to the sick and the 
woimded, the famished and the destitute Bulgarians and 
Servians of different denominations. I do not speak of the 

» Vol. U. p. 452. 

Mr. Aksakoff on the Servian War. 25 

help in the shape of money and clothes, but the help of 
the nation's blood, the toilsome work of deliverance — in one 
word, the active share the Bussian people took in the Servian 
war for Slavonic independence. The armistice lately signed 
by the Porte does not insure with certainty the conclusion 
of such a peace as would satisfy the lawful claims of our 
brethren, the honour of our people, and repay the bloody 
sacrifices made by Bussia. The temporary cessation of the 
war cannot be a reason for relaxing the exertions which have 
signalised the last few months of our public life. This is 
not the moment to send in our resignation. The time has 
not yet come for our Society to lay aside the heavy burden 
of this uncommon, unforeseen and unexpected activity. 

I have said ^uncommon, unforeseen and unexpected,' 
because what has been done lately in Bussia is indeed un- 
paralleled, not only in the history of Bussia, but in that of 
any other nation. The Society, or rather the people, with- 
out the help of the Government (which is unconditionally 
true to its diplomatic obligations), and without the help of 
any oflScial organisation, carry on a war in the person of some 
thousands of her sons (I say «(m«, not hirelings), at their 
own expense, in a country which, though boimd to ours by 
strong ties of relationship, is little known to the masses, and 
has been up till now rarely spoken of. And this is done 
neither for the sake of gain, nor in view of selfishly practical 
or material interests, but for interests apparently foreign and 
abstract. The war is carried on, not stealthily or secretly, 
but openly, in sight of all, with full conviction of the lawful- 
ness, right and holiness of the cause. This plain and spon- 
taneous movement cannot be understood by Western Europe, 
where most public movements appear to be the result of a 
prepared conspiracy, and can only take place under the 
direction and through the medium of regularly organised 
secret societies. It is therefore not to be wondered at that 
some persons like Lord Beaconsfield, and not he alone, but 
even some Bussians, ignorant of their own country, and 
mostly of the highest rank, find secret societies even in 

26 The Russian People and the War. 

Busaia, so that all the < shame,' or, as we think, all the 
honour, of the Bussian popular interference in the Servian 
war is to be ascribed to the Slavonic Committee. 

One cannot read without a smile such strange ideas o[ 
the power of our Society. You, gentlemen, know better 
than any how little our Society deserves the honour attri- 
buted to it. Such is the nature of this popular movement 
that it could never have been invented by the Committee, 
nor could it have shrunk into the narrow moulds which the 
Society could have formed for it. In reality it has fieur over- 
stepped its borders, and has nearly crushed by its force our 
modest organisation. At present it is not the concern of 
the Slavonic Committee, but of the whole of Bussia; and it 
is the greatest honour of our Society to become the simple 
instrument of the popular idea and the popular will — ^an in- 
strument, to our regret, very feeble and insufficient. 

That there was no premeditation in the action of the 
Committee can be best seen in the &ct that the Society was 
not prepared for the immense activity which fell to its lot. 
Our Committee of management, composed only of three or 
four persons without any regular office, continued for a long 
time to work in its usual way, though with great difficulty. 
In July they engaged a paid secretary, and, thereafter yield- 
ing by degrees to necessity, they enlarged the number of 
officials, and accepted at the same time the zealous and 
efficient co-operation spontaneously oflFered by many members 
of the Slavonic Committee, and of nearly the whole staff of 
the Mutual Credit Society, of which I have the honour to be 
the President. If this firank acknowledgment of ours can 
draw upon us the reproach of want of foresight, it can on the 
other hand serve as a most eloquent answer to the calunmies 
of foreign newspapers. The English Premier, I suppose, 
would be very much astonished if he verified his notions of 
our Committee by an examination of our ledgers and accounts. 
But even the reproach of shortsightedness would be unjust. 
The popular movement has siurprised not only the whole of 
Europe, but also Bussian society (that is, the educated re- 

Mr. Aksakoff on the Servian War. 27 

fleeting part of Bussia), precisely because it was popular^ 
not in the rhetorical, but in the plain literal meaning of the 
word. For scores of years the preaching of the so-called 
Slavophils resounded, and was, it seemed, as the voice ^ of 
one crying in the wilderness.' 

Twenty-two years ago the Crimean war broke out also 
as a result of the Eastern, or, more strictly speaking, the 
Slavonic, Question, and evoked a powerful expression of 
patriotism. It did not, however, awaken the historical self- 
consciousness in those classes of the people in which are the 
roots of the Bussian power, both spiritual and external. Un- 
seen by us and invisible is the secret process of the popular 
ripening and the working of the popular organism. 

We could certainly assume that with the abolition of 
serfdom, and of many legal class distinctions, together with 
the spread of elementary education, the intellectual view of 
the people must expand and their mind acquire greater free- 
dom of action. But the events which have occurred have 
surpassed the most sanguine expectations. I confess frankly 
that every new appearance of popular sympathy came upon 
me as a delightful surprise, until at last it was manifested in 
its full power and truth. Not less astonished was I by the 
gradual change in the thoughts and expressions of our so- 
called intelligent circles and in our press. All the literary 
parties and factions intermingled, and foimd themselves, 
to their mutual surprise, in agreement and unity on this 
question. The opponents of yesterday foimd themselves 
friends, as if they had broken their stilts, come down to the 
ground, thrown off the disguise of harlequins, and shown 
themselves — what they are in truth — Bussians, and nothing 

There was, in all this, enough to surprise any one who 
remembered the past of our social life. It was cleared up 
not at once, but gradually, by the current of events. 

When the rising in the Herzegovina began, rather more 
than a year ago, and the Slavonic Committee of Moscow, as 
well as the St. Petersburg branch, published the appeals of the 

28 The Russian People and the War. 

Servian and Montenegrin Metropolitans, and these appeals 
from the eccIeBiaetical personages were made known (only 
made known and nothing else), the donations aasnmed un- 
heard-of dimensions. 

The limits of the Orthodox world began to widen before 
the eyes of the people ; new vistas of fraternity were opened 
up to them ; but all was still in confusion. Not less con- 
fused were the ideas of the higher classes. Allien G-eneral 
Tchemayeff arrived in Moscow in September last year, and 
proposed to take with him to Montenegro fifty non-commis- 
sioned officers, and arms for 500 persons, his plan could not 
be put into execution because the Committee had no funds, 
and private persons did not show any readiness to supply 

The subsequent activity of the Committee was for some 
time, in appearance and reality, of a charitable nature. The 
volunteers who started for the Herzegovina were all South 
Slavonians, Servians and Bulgarians living in Russia. The 
only exceptions were two Russian officers, who had expressly 
come to Moscow, after having been refused assistance in St. 

When on the Slavonic horizon appeared the dawn of a 
new, and in the political sense a more important, struggle — 
the struggle between the Ser\ian Principalities and the Porte 
for the freedom of the Slavonic territories tributary to the 
Turks — and when at the end of last March General Tcher- 
nayeff announced to the Committee his intention of going to 
Ser\'ia, the Committee could but perceive the great signifi- 
cance of such an event as the appearance of Tchemayeff at 
the head of the Servian army. But neither the Committee 
nor Tchemayeff could then foresee what would happen to the 
Russian people. It was clear to the Committee that the act 
of self-sacrifice on the part of Tchemayeff could not but 
raise among the Slavonians the honour of the Russian name, 
greatly compromised by diplomacy, and could not fail at the 
same time to raise the moral level of Russian society by in- 
creasing its self-respect'. It was necessary to remove some 

Mr. Aksahoff on the Servian War. 29 

pecuniary difficulties which prevented the departure of 
Tchemayeff. A sum of 6,000 roubles was needed, and the 
Committee did not hesitate to advance it. 

Soon after TchemayeflF's arrival in Servia began the 
Turkish atrocities in Bulgaria.^ No special efforts were 
required to awaken Russian sympathy and compassion. For 
the Russians there is no enemy more popular than the 
Turk. Donations of money and effects flowed in in torrents. 

The Servian war began. With breathless anxiety Russia 
followed the uneven struggle of the little Orthodox country 
— smaller than the province of Tamboff — with the vast 
army, gathered together from Asiatic hordes dispersed over 
three quarters of the globe. But when the Servian army 
suffered the first defeat ; when on the soil of the awakened 
popular feeling fell, so to speak, the first drop of Russian 
blood; when the first deed of love was completed; when 
the first pure victim was sacrificed for the faith, and on 
behalf of the brethren of Russia, in the person of one of her 
own sons, then the conscience of all Russia shuddered. 

As from the first, so afterwards, the Muscovite Slavonic 
Committee offered no invitations nor allurements to secure 
volimteers. One after another came, retired officers request- 
ing advice and directions how to go to Servia, and enter the 
ranks of the army under the command of Tchemayeff. The 
news of the death of Kireeff, the first Russian who fell in 
this war, at once stimulated hundreds to become volunteers, 
— an event which repeated itself when the news was received 
of other deaths ^mong the Russian volunteers. Death did 
not frighten, but, as it were, attracted, them. At the 
beginning of the movement the volunteers were men who 
had belonged to the army, and chiefly from among the 
nobles. I remember the feeling of real emotion which I 
experienced when the first sergeant came, requesting me to 
send him to Servia — so new was to me the existence of such 
a feeling in the ranks of the people. This feeling soon grew 
in intensity when not only old soldiers, but even peasants, 

' May, 1870. 

80 The Russian People and the War. 

came to me witli the same request. And how humbly did 
they persevere in their petition, ae if heggixig alms ! With 
tears they begged me, on their knees, to send them to the 
field of battle. Such petitions of the peasants were mostly 
granted, and you should have seen their joy at the announce- 
ment of the decision! However, those scenes became so 
frequent, and business increased to such an extent, that it 
was qnite impossible to watch the expression of popular 
feeling, or to inquire into particulars from the volunteers as 
to their motives. 'I have resolved to die for my &ith.' 
' My heart boms.' ' I want to help our brethren.' ' Our 
people are being killed.' Such were the brief answers which 
were given with quiet sincerity. I repeat there was not, and 
could not be, any mercenary motive on the part of the 
volunteers. I, at least, conscientiously warned every one of 
the hard lot awaiting him, and* indeed, even at first si^t, 
no particular advantage could appear. Each one received 
only fifty roubles, out of which thirty-five went to pay the 
fare through Roumauia, and the rest was for food and oth^ 
expenses. The movement assumed at last such dimensions 
that we had to establish a special section for the reception 
of the volunteers and the examination of their requests and 

Ail parts of Russia were desirous of having branches of 
the Slavonic Committee. From every town propositions 
were sent to us, but, to our regret, we were unable to satisfy 
their urgent demands. The permission to establish fresh 
sections did not depend upon us, but upon the Minister of 
the Interior. Fortunately there is a society in Odessa called 
the Benevolent Society of Cyril and Methodius, which ren- 
dered great serrices to the general cause. Fortunately also. 
In some of oar provincial towns, there were governors who 
took a part in the popular feeling, and who allowed the 
inhabitants to organise small societies for the reception of 
donations. These latter became afterwards centres for local 
activity. But when a movement embraces tens of millions 
of people, scattered over an extent equal to nearly a quarter 

Mr, Akaakoff on the Sermah War. 31 

of tlie globe, it is impossible to arrange and regulate the 
expression of feeling, and particularly without the requisite 
publicity. Those who imagine that it is easy to subordinate 
such a movement to any Committee or organisation, do not 
know the nature of popular movements, especially in Russia. 
The donations became special, according to the wish of the 
donor. Many towns, villages, and private persons, without 
communicating with the Committees, wrote direct to Tcher- 
nayeff. Prince Milan, Princess Nathalie, Prince Nicholas of 
Monten^o, or the Metropolitan Michael. They even sent 
deputations, volunteers, money, and clothes, minutely ex- 
plaining the purpose for which. each article was intended, 
expressing at. the same time their sympathies and hopes. 
All this irregularity was quite natural, for the thing itself 
was most unusual and unpree^ented. 

Yes, gentlemen, there was no precedent, no experience, 
either in Russian society in general, or in our Committee in 
particular. The Committee had not only to distribute help 
in money, but also to take the duties of superintendence, 
inspection, providing medicine, arms, provisions, and, one 
might even add, duties of the general staff. There is not 
the least doubt that such an unaccustomed work, organised 
so suddenly, was fraught with many mistakes, and some- 
times, notwithstanding all our efforts, did not obtain the 
desired results. But one must also bear in mind that there 
was a total absence of any sort of organisation in Servia 
herself. Be this as it may, the Slavonic Committee worked 
hard and conscientiously. I come now to the question of 
the accounts. We cannot give, however, at present very 
detailed or precise ones, for from various places we have as 
yet not received them ourselves. 

I foresee that the amount of our receipts wiU greatly 
disappoint the public. We have heard and read daily that 
Russia has sent to the Slavs millions of money ; and the 
stem question arises, *What became of these millions?* 
The rumours set afloat about these millions have as much 
truth as those concerning the numbers of volunteers, of 

32 The Russian People and the War. 

whom it is said we sent 2O9OOO, when in fact only a fifth 
part of that number — perhaps less — ^were sent. The truth 
is, at Moscow and St. Petersburg we received a little more 
than a million and half of roubles. It must be borne in mind 
that we had to give help to the Herzegovina, Montenegro, 
Bosnia, Bulgaria, and Servia. During the last months, 
many small Conmiittees were formed over the whole of 
Russia, and sent out their donations independently of us. 
But these sums were comparatively small. Nearly all 
Western Russia dispensed with the co-operation of our 
Slavonic Committee. Some societies and commercial estab- 
lishments — as, for instance, the St. Petersburg Municipal 
Credit Co., which had remitted to TchemayeflF 100,000 
roubles, and had given also the same amount to the St. Pe- 
tersburg Committee — likewise sent out help themselves. It 
is therefore still impossible to state the precise amount of 
the donations ; but it may be said that, including the money 
spent by the chief Society for the tending of the sick and 
wounded soldiers, the total sum would be scarcely more than 
three millions of roubles. The value of the articles given 
may amoimt to half a million more. 

The sum is enormous, and yet it is small — that is to say, 
in comparison with the requirements ; for upwards of three 
millions of our Orthodox brethren of the Balkan Peninsula 
are in want of the most important and essential things — 
food, clothing, and shelter. It is small compared to the 
size of Russia, with her 80,000,000 of inhabitants and her 
power — small in comparison with the scores of millions 
reported. It is enormous, if you consider the source from 
which it came, our social condition, and the impediments 
which came in the way — enormous, because two-thirds of 
the donations were given by our poor peasants, much 
oppressed by want ; and every copper coin they gave will 
weigh undoubtedly heavier in the scale of history than 
hundreds of ducats. One may remark, in general, that the 
amount of the donations decreased according to the exalted 
position of the donor in the social scale. There were a few 

Mr. Aksakoff on the Servian War. 33 

ezceptioiis tx> thts rule, and we must also consider the bad 
harvests of the last years. It is an undoubted fact, however, 
that the eminently wealthy took no share in the movement, 
probably from a lack of sympathy. Finally, the sum is 
enormous, considering the novelty of the matter, the inability 
of working together, the difficulty of intercourse between the 
different parts of Russia, and the impossibility of using freely 
the help of the press. 

I shall not stop now to explain the particulars of our 
receipts, though they are of great interest. But because 
they are so frdl of interest they demand a minute exposition; 
and our honourable Secretary, who is also a professor of 
history, is now engaged on that work. The letters, which 
came with the donations, are now assorted; and many of 
them, being the simple expressions of the popular feeling, 
bear witness to the truth of the present historical movement. 

Mr. Aksakoff then gave a detailed statement of 
expenditure, of which the following are the leading 
features : — * Herzegovina, Bosnia, and Montenegro, 
185,000 roubles; General Tchernayeff and his stafi" 
— none of the volunteers were paid by the Servian 
Government — 79,000 roubles ; General Novosseloff 
and the Russian volunteers on the Ibar, 21,000 
roubles ; sick and wounded in Servia, 31,000 roubles ; 
army and telegraph, 9,000 roubles ; movable churches 
and volunteers' clothes, 10,000 roubles ; and 159,000 
roubles were still on hand.' 

Mr. Aksakoff continued : — 

The expenses, as you perceive, are not so great after all, 
considering the importance of the matter and the multitude 
of urgent wants. We have still to face unavoidable expenses 
imposed upon us by the national conscience; we have to 
provide for the Russian volunteers who are still in Servia, 
for the wounded, and for the families of those who have 


34 The Buasian PeopU and the War. 

bllen, and we must give to tlie sarriving Tolonteers the 
means for retnnuDg hcnne. We now have taken measures 
to form a regular ^stem of paying ealar; to the volunteers 
in the service of Servia (which we had not done before), and 
this will be continued as long as we have the means of 
doing BO. 

The Bnssian people will not abandon the work which it 
has begun ; of that we may be sure. 

One cannot but remark that in the last few days, under 
the influence of the newspaper correspondence, the public 
sympathy for the Servians has cooled. Whatever may have 
been the &ult8 of some Servians towards some RussianB, on 
the whole we are to blame — not the Servians. Yes, we, as 
a community, as Russia. The Servians cannot be expected 
to know, and cannot understand, that the help offered to 
them is merely the result of private efforts. Nor can they 
understand the peculiar conditions in which we are placed. 
They write, print, and talk about the help &om Russia, 
* the millions of Russia.* Under the name of Russia, the 
Servians and all Trans-Dannbian Slavonians do not under- 
stand a certain class of society, but the Russian Empire in 
its entirety. In a word, they are not accustomed to dis- 
tinguish in Russia between the people and the Government; 
and, trusting to Russia, they began a struggle above their 

The results of this mistaken belief are known to every- 
body. Towns in flames, hundreds of villages destroyed, the 
occupation of the third part of their land by the Turks, ex- 
haustion of means, and general ruin. Are we to pimiah them 
for their ruin ? We must also not forget that the Servians 
of the Principality have fought not only for their country, 
but for the deliverance of all the Slavonians who are suffer- 
ing and dying under the yoke of the Turk, and whose fate is 
just as near to the heart of the Russian people. We are in 
debt to the Servians! But we shall not long remain so. 
Ute Russian people will not allow the Russian name to be 
disgraced ; and the blessed hour so much hoped for by all is 

Mr. Aksakoff on the Servian War. 35 

near, when this work, which belongs properly to the State, 
will pass into the hands of our strong organised Government. 
Being led and aided by the popular force, the G-ovemment 
will take into its powerful hands the defence of the Slavs. 

So let it be! Tr---*»^H ^I ^'rv^'^'/TTy .^r. 

The reference which Mr. Aksakoff makes to the 

death of my brother will be better understood by 

reading the following extract from the brilliant pages 

of Mr. Kinglake, the historian of the Crimean War, 

who writes as follows, in the Preface to the sixth 

edition of his great work : — 

The Russians are a warm-hearted, enthusiastic people, 
with an element of poetry in them, which derives perhaps 
firom the memory of subjection undergone in old times and 
the days of Tartar yoke, for if Shelley speaks truly — 

Most wretched men 
Are cradled into poetry by wrong. 
They learn in sorrow what they teach in 8ong« 

.... They can be honestly and beyond measure vehe- 
ment in favour of an idealised cause which demands their 
active sympathy. That the voice of the nation, when eagerly 
expressing these feelings, is commonly genuine and spon- 
taneous, there seems no reason to doubt. Far from having 
been inspired by the rulers, an outburst of the fraternising 
enthusiasm, which tends towards State quarrels and war, is 
often unwelcome at first in the precincts of the Government 

After referring to the Servian War and to the 
presence of a few Russian volunteers in the Servian 
camp, Mr. Kinglake says : — 

This armed emigration at first was upon a small scale, 
and the Servian cause stood in peril of suffering a not dis- 
tant collapse, when the incident I am going to mention 
began to exert its strange sway over the course of events. 

The young Colonel Nicholai Kireeff* was a poble, whose 

D 2 

36 The Russian People and the War. 

birth and poeseasions connected him with the districts af- 
fected by Moscow's fiery aepiiations ; and being by nature 
a man of an entliusiastic disposition, he had accustomed 
himself to the idea of self-sacrifice. Upon the outbreak of 
Prince Milan's insuirection, he went off to Servia with the 
design of acting simply under the banner of the Bed Cross, 
and had already entered upon his humane task, when he 
found himself called upon by General Tchemayeff to accept 
the command of what we may call a brigade — a force of 
Bome five thousand infantry, consisting of volunteers and 
militiamen, supptnied, it seems, by five gone; and before 
long, he not only had to take his brigade into action, but to 
use it as the means of assailing an entrenched position at 
Rokowitz. KireefF Very well understood that the insular 
force entrusted to him was far firom being one that could 
be commended in the hour of battle by taking a look with a 
field-glass and uttering a few words to an aide-de-camp ; so 
he determined to carry forward his men by the simple and 
primitive expedient of personally advancing in front of them. 
He was a man of great stature, with extraordinary beauty of 
features ; and, whether owing to the midsummer heat, or 
bora any wild, martyr-like impulse, he chose, as he had done 
from the first, to be clothed altogether in white. Whilst 
advancing in front of hie troops against the Turkish battery, 
he was Btruck — first by a shot passing through his left arm, 
then presently by another one which struck hijn in the neck, 
and then again by yet another one which shattered his right 
hand and forced him to drop his sword ; but, despite all 
these wounds, he was still continuing his resolute advance, 
when a fourth shot passed through his lungs, and brought 
him, at length, to the ground, yet did not prevent him frx>m 
uttering — although with great efibrt — the cry of ' Forward ! 
Forward ! ' A fifth shot, however, fired low, passed through 
the fallen chiefs heart and quenched his gallant spirit. The 
brigade he had commanded fell back, and his body — vainly 
asked for soon afterwards by General Tchemayefi" — remained 
in the^handfl of the Turks. 

Mr. Akaakoff on the Servian War. 37 

These are the bare &ct8 upon which a huge superstruc- 
ture was speedily raised. It may be that the grandeur of the 
young Colonel's form and stature, and the sight of the blood, 
showing vividly on his white attire, added something extra- 
neous and weird to the sentiment which might well be inspired 
by witnessing his personal heroism. But, be that as it may, 
the actual result was that accounts of the incident — accounts 
growing every day more and more marvellous — flew so swiftly 
from city to city, from village to village, that before seven 
days had passed, the smouldering fire of Russian enthusiasm 
leapt up into a dangerous flame. Under countless green 
domes, big and small, priests chanting the * Bequiem ' for a 
young hero's soul, and setting forth the glory of dying in 
defence of * syn-orthodox ' brethren, drew warlike responses 
from men who cried aloud that they, too, would go where 
the young Kireeff had gone ; and so many of them hastened 
to keep their word, that before long a flood of volunteers 
from many parts of Russia was pouring fast into Belgrade. 
To sustain the once kindled enthusiasm apt means were 
taken. The simple photograph, representing the young 
Kireeff's noble features, soon expanded to large-sized por- 
traits; and Fable then springing forward in the path of 
Truth, but transcending it with the swiftness of our modern 
appliances, there was constituted, in a strangely short time, 
one of those stirring legends which used to be the growth of 
long years — ^a legend half-warlike, half-superstitious, which 
exalted its really tall hero to the dimensions of a giant, and 
showed him piling up hecatombs by a mighty slaughter of 

The mine — the charged mine of enthusiasm upon which 
this kindHug spark fell — ^was the same in many respects that 

' The able correspondents of our Engliah newspapers lately acting in 
Senria took care to mention the exploit and death of Oolonel Kireelf with 
more or less of detail, and the information they furnished is for the most 
part consistent with the scrutinised accounts on which I found the above 
narratiye. The corps in which the Colonel formerly served was that of 
the Cavalry of the Guards, but he had quitted the army long before the 
beginning of this year* 

38 The Russian People and the War. 

we saw giving warlike impulsion tx> the Russia of 1853 ; but 
then now was added the wrath, the just wrath at the thought 

of Bulgaria — ^which Russia shared with our people 

Thus the phantom of Kireeff, with the blood on his 
snowy-white clothing, gave an impulse which was scarce less 
romantic, and proved even perhaps more powerful than the 
sentiment for the Holy Shrines. 

Mr. Kinglake concludes by declaring that *the 
impulse which has been stirring the Russian people 
was for the most part a genuine, honest enthusiasm.'^ 

Before concluding this chapter, permit me to 
quote the following testimony to the national cha- 
racter of our war, which, if viewed as a speculation, 
was mad enough, no doubt, but which in reality was 
one of the most heroic wars ever fought. The writer, 
the learned Dr. J. J. Overbeck, whose intimate 
acquaintance with Russia and the Russians entitles 
him to speak with authority, says : ^ — 

It was not a political war, planned by statesmen ; it was a 
"national war^ a holy war, and the first victim in it was 
Nicholas de KireeflF, a splendid pattern of a Christian soldier, 
whose name will for ever shine in the annals of history. 

As we were personally acquainted with Colonel Nicholas 
de Kireeflf, we cannot refrain from adding that his heroic 
death was only the legitimate crowning of an heroic life — a 
life of self-sacrifice for the benefit of his suffering brethren. 
Nicholas Kireeff was an upright and zealous Orthodox ; and 
he did not only bdieve, but a4^ed accordingly. If ever prac- 
tical Christianity shone forth from the life of a man, we find 

* The year 1853 and the year 1876. A Preface to the sixth edition 
of the Incamon of the CrifneOy toI. i. pp. vi-XT. See also Wallace's 
Russia^ vol. ii. p. 453. Salisbuiy's Two Months with Oeneral Tchema- 
yfff in Seruia, pp. 194-7. 

' Orthodox Cafholii' RevieWj Tol. vii. p. 10. Triibner & Co. 

Mr. Aksakoff on the Servian War. 39 

it here. Never the poor applied in vain tx) him. Never the 
hungry passed his door unfed. His last roubles he shared 
with two poor Bulgarians. Such virtues could not fail con- 
quering even his enemies. Russia, able to produce such a 
man, shows her own healthy and vigorous life, and may be 
sure of its final victory in the present momentous struggle.^ 

^ I cannot dismiss this subject without a passing reference to the 
influence which Mr. Gladstone's pamphlet is supposed to have had in 
leading Russians to Tolunteer for service in Servia. The movement, as 
Mr. Aksakoff stateB, assumed national importance at the end of July, 
after my brother's death. On page 16 I quote a despatch, the date of 
which is worth noting, for it shows that on August 16 the British 
Ambassador reported the state of feeling in Russia to be such that 
volunteering was going on everywhere. It was not till September 6 
that Mr. Gladstone published his pamphlet, and it was not translated 
into Russian until the close of the month. To ascribe the departure of 
Russian volunteers to Servia as being due to Mr. Gladstone's pamphlet 
is chronologically as absurd as, to a Russian, it is grotesquely ridiculous. 
The speech delivered by Sir William Harcourt in Parliament, August 11, 
and that of the Buke of Argyll at Glasgow were also translated into 
Rusdan. Unaccustomed as Russians are to hear impartial generous 
utterances in favour of the Eastern Christians from English sources, 
they were happy to point out these noble exceptions. But to imagine, 
as the Hon. R Bourke appears to have done, ' ever since October, 1876,' 
that Russians needed to be taught their duty by an Englishman, and 
that the nimibers of volunteers with General Tchemayeff were affected 
by Mr. Gladstone's pamphlet, is one of the most curious illustrations of 
insular British delusions which ever excited the laughter of astonished 
Russians. We did not need English advices as to our duty towards the 
oppressed brethren, nor did Mr. Gladstone ever advise our intervention. 
On the contrary, he strongly deprecated it He wrote : ' Every circum- 
stance of the most obvious prudence dictates to Russia for the present 
epoch what is called the waiting game. Her policy is, to preserve or to 
restore tranquillity for the present, and to take the chances of the future.' 
The whole pamphlet was a plea for concerted, as opposed to isolated, 
action in the East. 

40 The Russian People and the War. 



Why do the Eussians hate the Turks ? 

Because they know them. 

An all-sufficient answer. Our knowledge was 
not bought without bitter tears. The Tartar wrote 
his character across our Russia in letters of flame. 
You EngUsh people are not touched with a feeling of 
the suflerings of the rayahs, because you have not 
been in all points afflicted as they : Russians have. 
In centuries of anguish they have learned the lesson 
of sympathy with those who are crushed beneath an 
Asiatic yoke. We feel for them because we suflered 
with them. As they are — so we were. They are not 
only our brethren in race and religion, they are also 
our brothers in misfortune, united to us in ' the 
sacred communion of sorrow.* 

Many of my EngUsh friends know but Httle about 
the causes of hereditary hatred of the Russian for the 
Turk. I venture, therefore, to state briefly the facts 
which my countrymen can never forget. 

It is not more than six hundred years since 
first the Russian people fell under the curse of Tartai* 
domination. Before that time the Russians were as 

Cross and Crescent. 41 

free, as prosperous, and as progressive as their neigh- 
bours. Serfdom was unknown. The knout, Mr. 
Tennyson's abomination, was not introduced until two 
hundred and fifty years after the Tartar conquest. 
There were Republics in Russia as in Italy, and 
the Grand Prince had no more power than other 
sovereigns. But in the middle of the thirteenth 
century Russia, lying nearest to Asia, experienced 
a Tartar invasion. An accident of geographical 
position subjected her to a visitation, from the conse- 
quences of which she has freed herself by superhuman 

It was in 1224 that the Tartars first estabUshed 
themselves as conquerors in South-Eastem Russia. 
It was not till the close of the sixteenth century that 
we finally rid ourselves of these troublesome intruders. 
The Tartar domination, however, did not last much 
more than two hundred years. It was in 1252 that 
St. Alexander Nevsky received the title of Grand- 
Duke from the Tartars. It was not till 1476 that we 
ceased to pay tribute to our conquerors. But long 
afl«r Ivan HI. had broken the power of the 
Mongol horde the Tartars spread desolation and death 
through Russia. As late as 1571, when England, 
under Elizabeth, had just given birth to a Shakespeare, 
Moscow was burnt to the ground by a wandering 
host of Asiatics. It is easy to write the words, 
* invaded by the Tartars ; ' but who can realise 
the fact ? Western Europe, which felt afar off 
the scorching of the storm of fire which swept 
over Russia, throbbed with horror. Kind-hearted 

42 Tlie Russian People and the War. 

St. Louis of France prayed * that the Tartars might be 
banished to the Tartarus from whence they had come, 
lest they might depopulate the earth !' All the 
monsters who to you are mere names were to us 
horrible realities. The Khans, the Begs, of whose 
pyramids of skulls the world still hears with dread, 
rioted in rapine throughout the whole of Russia. 
Five generations of Russians lived and died under the 
same degrading yoke as that which has crushed 
the manhood out of the Bulgarians. 

For centuries every strolling Tartar was as abso- 
lute master of the life, the property, and the honour 
of the Russians as the Zaptieh is of the lives of the 
Southern Slavs. To you English people atrocities are 
things to read of and imagine. To us Russians they 
are a repetition of horrors with which we have been 
familiar from childhood. Moscow has twice suflTered 
the fate of Batak, and nearly every city in Russia has 
suffered the horrors inflicted upon Yeni-Zagra. 

For at least three centuries our national history is 
little more than a record of the struggle of our race 
for Uberty to Uve. Our national heroes are the 
warriors who did battle with the Asiatic intruder, and 
to this hour in our churches the images of St. Michael 
of Twer being put to death by the Tartars for 
reftising to become a renegade stir the patriotism and 
excite the imagination of the youthful Russian. The 
path of liberty was steep and thorny. Again and 
again our efforts were baffled. A town revolted, and 
it was consumed. Bands of armed peasants who 
resisted the Tartars were from time to time massacred 

Cross and Crescent 43 

to a man. But the Bussian nation did not despair. 
As yoxir own Byron sang — Byron, who gave his 
life to the cause for which thousands of my country- 
men are giving theirs to-day— 

Freedom*8 battle, once begun, 
Bequeathed by bleeding sire to son, 
Though baffled oft, is ever won. 

Gradually Eussia shook off the yoke of her oppressors. 
Her advance resembled that of Servia and Roumania. 
After having enjoyed administrative autonomy, she 
secured her position as a tributary State, and then, at 
last, waxing strong with freedom, she burst the 
chains with which she had been so long bound. 

Russia was free from the Asiatic oppressor, but 
the evil results of his domination remained. Mr. 
Gladstone, in one of his grandest speeches on the 
Eastern Question, explained the comparatively low 
intellectual condition of the Southern Slavs, by refer- 
ring to the sandy barrier which, while producing 
nothing valuable itself, nevertheless keeps the 
destroying wave from encroaching upon the fertile 
land. What the Southern Slavs did for Southern, 
Eussia did for Northern Europe. Upon us the Asiatic 
wave spent its force. We were overwhelmed. But 
we saved Europe from the Mongol horde. 

While we saved, we suffered ; we emerged from 
the flood of barbarism ourselves partially barbarous. 
Our progress had been arrested for centuries. All 
our national energies had been diverted into the 
struggle against our conquerors. What had once 
been flourishing towns were blackened ruins. 

44 The Russian People and the War. 

Liberty itself disappeared for a time. To fight 
the Tartar all power was centred in the hand of one 
ruler. Serfdom was amongst the legacies of Tartar 
domination. While the rest of the world had 
advanced, Russia had even been forced back. 

It was a terrible visitation, but it left behind 
it at least one benefit. But for the tortures of these 
sad centuries, the Russian people might have been 
as indifferent as the French and the EngUsh to 
the cries of those who are still under the power of 
the Pashas. But for the sympathy of the Russian 
people, Chefket Pasha and Achmet Aga might have 
ruled for ever in Bosnia and Bulgaria. The Tartars 
prevented that. They taught the Russian people 
what the rule of the Asiatic is, — a dreadful lesson, 
creating that hatred of the Turk which will ultimately 
secure hb ejection from Europe. 

The death-warrant of the Ottoman Empire was 
signed by Timour the Tartar. 




BussL/kK papers mention a great personage who, on 
overhearing some discussion about the possible con- 
clusion of peace, observed significantly that the time 
was too serious for jokes. Whoever the personage 
may be, we may bless him for his remark. Yet 
English people discuss the possibilities of peace with- 
out any consciousness that their talk cannot be 
regarded as serious. There is evidently an in- 
surmoimtable difficulty on the part of EngUshmen to 
understand the way in which we regard this war in 
Russia. Were it not so, we should hear less of the 
hopes so freely expressed and so thoughtlessly cheered 
that foreign advice might guide Russia in bringing 
our war to a close. In England you have evidently 
forgotten all about the object of the war in the eager- 
ness with which you have followed its details. The 
death-struggle in Bulgaria and Armenia is to you 
what a gladiatorial combat was to the pampered 
populace of ancient Rome. You sit as spectators 
round the arena, cheering now the Turk and now the 
Russian, as if these brave men were being butchered 

' This letter was i^nritten a few weeks before the fall of Plevna. 

46 The Ruaaian P^le and the War. 

solely to afford you an excitdng spectacle. Tired at 
last, you cry, * Enough, enough I clear the ring, and 
pass on to some other sport.' But had you not 
ignored the nature of the fight, you would never ask 
to do that. It is not a mere gladiators' war. It is 
not a duel between two Powers about some punctilio 
of ofiended honour, which might be satisfied — as 
Mr. Freeman so weU says — by the killing of a decent 
number of people. Were it either of these things, 
there would be some reason for the tri^edy to close, 
for it would have been a crime from the first. But 
the war in which my countrjrmen are dying by 
thousands, so far irom being a crime was an im- 
perative duty, for it was the only means for attaining 
an end the righteousness of which all Europe has 
admitted. It was the only way for Buasia of being 

We did not make war for the sake of war. We 
sorrowfully but resolutely accepted that terrible 
alternative because we had do other choice, since 
ill-advised Turkey would not listen to the voice of 
justice. To us it would be a crime if, after having 
begun the work, we were to draw back without 
having accomplished the object which alone justified 
so terrible an undertaking. Hence all this talk of 
mediation, intervention, conferences, and of peace 
proposals sounds to us as mere mockery. There 
can be no peace until we have attained our end, 
and that we cannot do until we have completely 
freed the Christian Slavs. The war to us is a cruel 
reaUty, instead of merely a theatrical spectacle. We 

Before the Fall of Plevna. 47 

bear the blows the mere sight of which unnerves 
you. It is our hearths that are darkened by the 
shadow of death. Yet in all Bussia you will hear 
no cry for peace until we have secured our end. I 
grieve to say Bussia has its Beaconsfields. But as 
I said before, they are in a minority, and they 
become what they ought to be — thoroughly Bussian, 
when asked to die for their country. Amongst the 
heroes whose deaths Bussia deplores were people 
who — thanks to foreign influences, thanks to an idle, 
unoccupied life — ^became estranged from national 
interests ; but their hearts throbbed afresh on hearing 
cries for help in accents of agony, and on seeing 
with their own eyes the appalling miseries of their 
brethren. The war brings out to dayUght the best, 
the noblest elements of my country. Our armies are 
appreciated by the whole world. Colonel Bracken- 
bury's eloquent tribute to the Bussian character, 
pubUshed by the Times^ carries with it a strong 
conviction of its absolute accuracy. As a Bussian 
I read it with deep emotions of gratitude. There 
is another side of the question, which, although 
seldom mentioned by the press, deserves the highest 
praise — I mean the part played in the war by the 
Bussian women. From the highest to the lowest 
rank, regardless of any social differences, they devote 
themselves entirely to the reUef of the sick and 
wounded, both on the field of battle and at home. In 
fact, the Bed Cross Society includes in its ranks the 
whole womanhood of Bussia. This spirit of self- 

» December 1, 1877. 

48 The Russian People and the War. 

sacrifice and devotion is shown even by those who, 
before the testing moment, appeared to be utterly 
lost in worldly, frivolous pursuits. 

Yes, this grand war has given a new impulse to 
Russian life, a deeper feeling of higher missions -in 
this world. Someone said that life was nothing but 
an examination one had to passin order to die nobly, 
and to prove that we did not make a bad use of the 
greatest privil^e given to mortals — that of moral 
liberty. My coimtrymen and countrywomen are 
passing their examination splendidly ; and the Slavs 
— the cause of this new heroism of the whole of 
Russia — ^have claims upon our gratitude as much as 
upon our sympathies ! K it had not been for Servia 
and the Russian volunteers, the Slavonic world might 
have waited for its deliverance many, many years 

In vain we try to pierce the impervious veil 
which conceals the future, but we know that our 
Tzar is the very incarnation of his country, and that 
having often shown a remarkable kind-heartedness, 
he has also given striking proofs of his firm will in 
great, decisive moments. The fate of the Christian 
Slavs is in noble and generous hands. The result of 
the war no Russian can for one moment doubt. 
Come what may, the Slavs will be freed. All * pos- 
sible terms of peace,' that do not include the ejection 
of the Zaptieh and the Pasha, bag and baggage, 
from the Balkans are manifestly impossible. Deluded 
and obstinate as the Turk is, he will not go out until 
he is beaten a plates coutures. 

Before the Fall of Plevna. 49 

After the barbarian is swept away the task of 
reorganising the government of these lands will be 
much simpUfied. It will not be impossible to main- 
tain suflScient order in the province whilst its inhabi- 
tants are gradually acquiring, like the Serbs and 
Boumans, the habit of self-government. As to Con- 
stantinople, even if the fortune of war should compel 
us to enter that city, we should enter it as the Germans 
entered Paris, to celebrate a triumph, not to make 
an annexation. Our Emperor's word upon this was 
solemn and conclusive. 

The refusal to believe such an assurance from 
such a man implies an incapacity to understand the 
very existence of good faith. Certain suspicions 
reflect discredit only upon those who entertain them. 
The nobler England is above such unworthy dis- 

Roumania stretches as a barrier between us and 
the soil of Turkey, which we ai'e supposed to covet, 
and Eoumania will not suffer for her alliance with 

We have no warmer alUes than the foremost 
statesmen and scholars of England. Only two or 
three days ago Sir George Cox, the eminent historian 
of Greece, urged his countrymen to present an 
address to the Tzar, ' assuring him that in the great 
work of freeing Europe wholly and for ever from the 
defilement of Turkish rule we heartily wish him and 

' Botunania gained both independence and the Dobroudja, a large 
territoiy and three seaports. Do not be so innocent as to suppose that 
Roumania in her heart of hearts is actually displeased with the exchange. 
We know something about that. 

50 Tlie Russian People and the War. 

all his people " God speed," and that we wait im- 
patiently for the day when the Bussian Emperor 
shall proclaim the freedom of the Christian subjects 
of the Sultan in the city of Constantine. There only 
can the work be consummated ; and there, by esta- 
blishing European law, and then withdrawing from 
the land which he shall have set free, he will have 
won for himself an undying glory, and, what is of 
infinitely greater moment, he will have done his duty 
in the sight of God and man.' 

Well, it is a difficult question ! The Guardian^ 
I see, advises us to annex Armenia. Mr. Forster 
and Mr. Bryce declared that for the Armenians 
Bussian annexation would be a great change for 
the better. They received our troops as deliverers, 
and thousands accompanied them on their retreat 
into Bussian territory. We cannot surrender these 
poor creatures into the hands of the Turks. What 
must we do, then? K we retire, the Turk will 
return, and the last state of Armenia will be worse 
than the first. Bussia is wealthy enough in territory, 
but what are we to do about the Armenians ? This 
difficulty is not felt by Bussians alone, but is shared 
by Enghshmen who have studied the question. One 
of those whose name stands high in the Hterary 
world, remarked, the other day : — 

*You have captured Kars thrice this century. 
Why should you give it up ? The Germans did not 
give up Metz. They did not desire any conquest, 
they aimed at no aggrandisement ; but they kept 
Metz as a safeguard against another war. Suppose 

Before the Fall of Plevna. 51 

you keep Kai^, who has any right to complain ? Not 
the Turks, for the victor has a right to the spoils. 
Afl for the other Powers, if they had helped you in 
your battle, they might have claimed to be heard, but 
not now.' 

Then there is Batoum. It is close on our frontier. 
It is notorious that it is solely due to a misspelling in 
an old treaty that it is not already ours. Why should 
we not rectify the clerical mistake of the transcriber ? 
Batoum is the natural port of Russian Armenia. Its 
harbour is most frequented by Russian ships. It 
was certainly not worth while going to war for Batoum 
or Ears, and the Turkish fleet into the bargain. But 
now that we have had to go to war, is it not a moral 
duty to make the Turks pay as dearly as possible for 
the sacrifices which they have cost us ? If we could 
punish the Turks without annexing any territory, I 
would not annex either Kars or Batoum ; but if that 
is the only way in which they can be punished, and 
the Armenians protected, my scruples against annexa- 
tion may disappear. 

There were many of us in Russia when war was 
declared who beUeved that the whole of the campaign 
would be simply a military promenade. Many said, 
* We will occupy Constantinople in June or July, and, 
after dictating in that capital our terms of peace, we 
will return home with the happy consciousness that 
we have arranged everything to our satisfaction!' 
But now we are in November ; we have lost 71,000 
men killed and wounded ; we are spending millions 
and millions for the war, and we are not yet in occu- 

B 2 

52 The Russian People and the War. 

pation of Constantinople. The difficulty and costliness 
of the enterprise render it impossible for Bussia to 
secure any adequate compensation for her sacrifices. 
We may get some kind of an indemnity — using the 
word to signify a war fine — and it is well to distinguish 
between a war fine and compensation. We have made 
great sacrifices, and we may yet have to make still 
greater should Lord Beaconsfield succeed in arraying 
England against us ; but the liberation of the Slavs is 
now certain. Between the status quo ante helium and 
the present lie too many precious graves for it ever to 
be restored. Our military promenade has transformed 
itself into a gigantic burial procession ; but when its 
end is attained our regret for the brave who have 
fallen in the fight will be rendered less poignant by 
the joy with which we shall hail the resurrection of 
the Southern Slavs. 

About the time I was writing the above letter, the 
same subject was treated in a^peech of charactecistia- 
fervojir and eloquence by Mr^.^^AEsatofi* in an Address 
to the Moscow Slavonic Committee: Here is^ slightly 
condensed translation of that speech : — 

The last time I conversed with you we hailed the declara- 
tion of war as the approach of a great and difficult historical 
day. Eussia is now at work. We have entered on the 
busiest harvest time. There is need of labour — hard, obsti- 
nate, gigantic labour, corresponding to the gigantic task 
which we have undertaken. The end of it is not yet in sight, 
and not soon will the labourers be able to rest. As Presi- 
dent of the Slavonic Society, I ought to describe to you the 
general position of the Slavonic world. But all its attention 

Mr. Aksakoff on Russian Reverses. 53 

is fixed on the seat of war, and it lives on the news received 
daily from the Caucasus and the Danube. On those two 
points are centred all its most essential and most vital in^ 
terests. The question of its existence is being decided there, 
where flows in torrents our Russian blood. Of what else can 
we speak or think about at this moment ? The time has 
not yet come for calculating results, for the war, with all its 
accidents and vicissitudes, is still raging fiercely. Let us 
confess openly and boldly that we have had little opportunity 
of being spoilt by military success. But it was not on for- 
tune that Eussia placed her hopes. Our consolation and 
our joy are as yet not in the results of the war, but in the 
wonderful bravery of our soldiers. Never before did their 
bravery appear with such a sacred halo. Above all that heap 
of contradictory nmiours, scandal, intrigues, calumnies, and 
accusations produced by the war, rises in unquestionable 
greatness only the bright image of the Bussian soldier — 
good-natured, simple, and impregnably strong in his religious 
fedth and resignation. He has conquered all the passionate 
partiality and prejudices of hostile spectators, and now the 
European world respectfully recognises his military firmness 
and his humane, genuine goodness of heart. Already half a 
hundred thousand of these heroes have been put hx/ra de 
eombcU. And what has been obtained by their superhuman 
efforts and their precious blood ? It is not for us, and per- 
haps it is not yet the proper time, to judge of the art, the 
knowledge, the ability, and the talents of the military com- 
manders. We can speak only of what is felt and experienced 
at present by all Bussia. Seeing such an expenditure of 
efforts and blood, and at the same time such relatively in- 
significant results, Bussia is at a loss to understand the fact. 
Like one of the old fabled heroes, suddenly paralysed by a 
wicked enchanter, she is astonished and involuntarily in- 
quires why she is thus powerless. Light ! light ! as much 
light as possible — that is what she now requires. In light 
are health, force, power, and the possibility of recovery. 
But the light is sparingly granted to us, and comes to us 

S4 TliC Riussian People and the War. 

chiefly from foreign distant lands. With morbid eagerness 
Bussia peers into the darkness, and sees, as it were through 
a mist, only the sad vision of innumerable heroic sacrifices. 
With morbid eagerness she listens, and hears from the organs 
of the authorities nothing but the firightful numbers of the 
killed and wounded and fragmentary, confused intelligence. 
Is it not strange and disgraceful that all Russians, from the 
highest to the lowest ranks, are condemned to find the best 
accounts of the great struggle in the letters of foreign cor- 
respondents ? That high honour has &llen chiefly to the lot 
of two English correspondents, Forbes and MacGahan. Their 
independent, impartial voice has inspired confidence, more 
than the timid evidence of Russia, carefully filtered by the 
Censure. We have to thank them for the sympathy which 
they have shown to our cause, for their pious respect to our 
soldiers, for their praises of our officers' bravery, and, above 
all, for the calm, bitter truths they have spoken. That 
truth, in the translations of Russian newspapers, has spread 
over all Russia, for there is now scarcely a village in which 
newspapers are not read. 

Yes, the people have been unable to understand, and 
perplexity has, like a heavy cloud, spread over the land ; but 
only perplexity, not depression. On all that boundless ex- 
panse amid the millions of the popular masses, is heard no 
word of complaint or murmur. No one asks, With what aim, 
on what account, or for what purpose, do we carry on war ? 
The people are simply unable to understand why it is carried 
on thus, and not otherwise ; why the most heroic war in the 
world has hitherto given no victories. Not for a single 
moment has a doubt crept into the popular mind as to the 
holiness of the enterprise. Never has there been the least 
hesitation about finishing what has been begun. The people 
will bear the burden to the end, will bring out on their broad 
shoulders the dignity of Russia untarnished, and the ftilfil- 
ment of her historical mission — redeeming with their blood 
the sins which have prevented victory. These sins, however, 
lie not at the door of the common people — not on *the 

Mr, Akadkoff on Ruman Reverses, 5 5 

younger brothers/ as people in onr class haughtily and pa- 
tronisingly call them —but on us, the ' elder brothers,' who 
have comndtted the deadly sin, which is the root of all our 
social evils — the sin of forsaking Russian nationality. Never 
has the di£ference between the people and the educated 
classes come out so clearly as in the present war. At a 
moment when our enemies rejoice, when our soldiers are 
generously sacrificing themselves in thousands, when those 
who remain alive have been made stronger and firmer on the 
anvil of adversity, and anxiously expect firom Russia words of 
encouragement and approval, what voices, rising louder and 
louder, do they hear ? The voices of those who lament and 
predict for Russia almost thorough defeat. * Look, look ! ' 
say these prophets of evil in a wailing tone, trying in vain to 
hide their malicious delight and parodying the part of lovers 
of the people, * We were right ! We tried by every means to 
oppose that mad, useless war, forced upon Russia by the im- 
pudent boldness of the Slavonic Committee, by the raving of 
the penny-arliner, and by other fanatics, who unfortunately 
were not repressed. What have we to do with Slavs, Bul- 
garians, and Servians ? We are, first of all, Russians, and 
ought to think only of the interests of Russia. What busi- 
ness have we to emancipate and educate others when we have 
misfortunes enough of our own ? All this we said again and 
again ; but we were not listened to ; our advice was rejected, 
and what has been gained ? ' 

So speak the political wiseacres. It may seem idle to 
pay attention to their expression of cheap wisdom and self- 
satisfied light-headedness, but, imfortunately, that intel- 
lectual and moral emptiness to which every one who forsakes 
his nationality is condemned, has been invested with a certain 
significance and has exercised wide-reaching influence. Apart 
from accidental failures, who but these people are the chief 
causes of our disasters, of our misfortunes, and of that multi- 
tude of sacrifices which they bewail ? On whom, if not on 
them, must fall the responsibility for superfluous bloodshed ? 
Was it not they who strengthened the enemy by holding 

56 Tlie Russian People and the War. 

back the blow which might have been dealt at the proper 
moment, thereby giving him time to prepare ? They talk 
about a war without cause — a war forced upon them. 
Having eyes they see not, and having ears they hear not. 
Like foreigners, they cannot understand the natural simpli- 
city of the popular motives and the historical significance of 
the struggle. They ought, by their education and social 
position, to be the highest organ of the popular conscious- 
ness, but in reality they are utterly unacquainted with these 
elements of the national spirit which exist in the masses and 
create historical life. It may, perhaps, be objected that the 
masses know nothing about historical missions and ideals. 
In a certain sense this is true. If we ask individual peasants 
or a group of peasants what the historical mission of Russia 
is, we find, of course, that they know nothing about it. We 
ought, however, to remember that neither individuals nor 
groups of individuals fully represent a people. A people is 
a peculiar, entire organism, ruled by its internal historical 
laws, and possessing power of development, memory, aspira- 
tions, missions, and aims, all of which can be reflected 
only very imperfectly by individuals. The processes of this 
organic national life can be perceived and understood only 
by a few who have raised themselves by thought and educa- 
tion above the ordinary level. The Russian common people 
have little historical knowledge and no abstract conceptions 
about the mission of Russia in the Slavonic world ; but they 
have historical instinct, and they clearly perceive one thing, 
that the war was caused neither by the caprice of an auto- 
cratic Tzar nor by unintelligible political consideration. 
Free from all ambition and all desire of military glory, they 
accepted the war as a moral duty imposed by Providence — a 
war for the faith, for Orthodox Christians of the same race 
as themselves, tortured by the wicked enemies of Christianity. 
We had illustrations of this in the Servian war of last year. 
Some village communes, desirous of taking part in the great 
Christian work, equipped volunteers, and these volunteers, 
when we atkeil them why they wished to go to Ser via, replied 

Mr. Akaakoff on Russian Reverses. 57 

simply and sincerely that they wished to suffer and die for 
the faith. To our * Conservatives ' all this seemed foolish- 
ness. They mocked, ridiculed, condemned, calumniated 
those who were animated with such religious feelings, and 
succeeded in making the Government doubt the sincerity 
and genuineness of the popular movement. They even re- 
presented the movement as revolutionary, and the conse- 
quence of this has been that the ablest Russian actors in the 
Servian struggle (Tchemayeff and his staff) have not been 
allowed to take part in the present war. That struggle was 
the prologue to the great drama which is now being played 
out, and yet those who are now fighting for the emancipation 
of the Bulgarians seem to disown the crusade undertaken 
last year for another branch of the Slav family. 

That which the masses have recognised as a moral, abso- 
lute duty is at the same time the historical mission of Bussia 
as the head and representative of the orthodox Slavonic 
wcMrld, not yet fully created, but capable of being created, 
and awaiting its concrete historical form. All the import- 
ance of Bussia in the great world lies in her peculiar religious 
and national characteristics combined with external material 
force — in her Orthodoxy and Slavonism, which distinguish 
her from Western Europe. She cannot attain her full de- 
velopment without securing the triumph of those spiritual 
elements in their ancient homes and re-establishing equality 
of rights for races closely allied to her by blood and spirit. 
Without the emancipation of the orthodox East from the 
Turkish yoke, and from the material and moral encroach- 
ments of the West, Bussia must remain for ever mutilated 
and maimed. For her the war was a necessity, an act of 
self-defence, or rather the natural continuation of her 
historical organic development. Blessed is the country 
whose political missions coincide with the fulfilment of a 
high moral duty ! The triumph of Bussia is the triumph of 
peace, liberty, and fraternal equality. In this respect her 
position is very different from that of certain * Christian* 
and * civilised ' Powers, whose very existence reposes on the 

58 The Russian People and the War. 

humiliation, enslavement, a^d demoralisation of foreign 
races, and, consequently, contains the germ of condemnation 
and ruin. For the interests of Great Britain, for instance, 
it is necessary that the population of the Balkan Peninsula 
should be kept in misery and perpetual minority, that the 
Turks should rule over the Christians, and that the Bible 
should be trampled on by the Koran. Turkish atrocities, 
slaughter of Bulgarians, and wholesale massacres of women 
and children, all that is permitted by England in order to 
deprive Russia of her triumph, and is for England a matter 
of patriotism ! So it is likewise for Austro-Hungary, whose 
existence is founded on injustice to the Slavs. But all this 
has remained unintelligible to our Conservatives. -When the 
Tzar, who stands and acts before the fetce of history and is 
responsible for the destinies of Russia, recognised the neces- 
sity of the long-expected struggle, they put in motion all 
the influences in their power to prevent the declaration of 
hostilities. Poor unfortunates! They dreamt of stopping 
the march of history. In that they did not, of course, 
succeed ; but they did succeed in obstructing, diverting, and 
distorting it. Turkey, unprepared for the struggle, blessed 
them and made preparations. And what did we do ? Who 
threw into confusion, weakened and kept back the prepara- 
tions which we had to make ? Who strengthened the hands 
and raised the courage of our enemies ? AMio undermined 
from the very beginning the external force and energy of 
Russia ? 

Diplomacy, the true reflection of that absence of indi- 
viduality and nationality, began its work, advantageous for 
our enemies and disadvantageous for us. Europe, believing 
the assertions that Russia was unprepared and not disposed 
for war, subjected us to the torture of gradual humiliating 
diplomatic concessions. Whose dominant opinions obscured 
the plain indications of history and prevented Russia from 
making the preparations necessary for the ftdfilment of her 
mission ? Our so-called Conservatives. Thanks to them, 
the Russian soldier went forth to fight laden with heavy 

Mr. Akaakeff on Rimian Reverses. 59 

weights which prevented all free exercise of his strength. 
For the sake of European peace the war was condemned to 
localisation. The interests of Europe ! That is one of those 
empty phrases in which Europe herself does not believe, but 
which serve as a bait to catch Russian simplicity and Russian 
pretensions to Europeanism. S^nce the natural development, 
perhaps the very existence, of Russia is inconsistent with 
European interests, ought we not to contract or even entirely 
e£faoe ourselves for the tranquillity of the West ? But what 
did the localisation mean ? It meant the freeing of Turkey 
fit>m all trouble with regard to Servia, Bosnia, Greece, 
Epirus, Thessaly, Egypt, and the directing of all its forces 
against the Russian army in Bulgaria, the practical result of 
all which was Plevna, thousands of killed and wounded, the 
prospect of a winter campaign, and perhaps, after all, a 
European war. 

But this is not all. The Turks know well that for them 
it is a question of ^ to be or not to be,' and therefore for them 
the war is a war of race and religion. In the Russian 
popular consciousness it is likewise a war for the faith ; but 
our Conservatives have done all in their power to deprive it 
of its true significance and to repress all manifestations of 
the Russian popular spirit by forbidding the use of such 
words as * Orthodoxy ' and * Slavdom.' There lies the chief 
cause of our defeats. The Conservatives, who have abandoned 
your nationality, are like ships without ballast — light-headed, 
not serious people. Your inevitable portion in life is light- 
headedness, superficiality, ignorance, and misconception of 
the vital wants and interests of the coimtry. Though you 
are filled with patriotism and knightly honour, and go fear- 
lessly into the fight, meeting death bravely on the field of 
battle, your conceptions are narrow, your patriotism merely 
external and political. You care not for the essential ele- 
ments of Russian nationality. Ready to lay down your life 
in the struggle with Europe for the outward dignity and 
independence of the Empire, you at the same time slavishly 
prostrate yourselves in spirit before European civilisation 

60 The Russian People and the War. 

and the moral authority of the West. Dying at Shipka or 
Plevna, you sow with your blood the seeds of a new Slavonic, 
Orthodox world, the very name of which was distasteful to 
you during your lifetime. 0, you who know how to die, but 
do not know how to live as Russians, will you ever awake 
and remember who you are ? 

But enough ! We are all of us, in our own way, guilty 
and responsible for the present state of affairs. Let us put 
away mutual recrimination, and, bearing each other's bur- 
dens, let us take upon ourselves, all together, the sin and 
the punishment and repentance. A new day is dawning. 
As the rising sun chases away the terrors of the night, so 
now the light beaming from the hills of Armenia and 
the heights of Plevna has shown us our errors and our 
shortcomings. If we profit by the lesson taught by much 
blood, the heroic sacrifices will not have been in vain. 
There must be no hesitation, as there is no choice. We 
must conquer. Russia cannot retreat or stop, though all 
Eiu-ope should place itself as a wall in our path. Retreat 
would be treachery towards the suffering Slavs, treason to 
our historical mission, and the beginning of political death. 
Let us accept new burdens and make neW sacrifices. The 
nation has an unbounded confidence in the watchfulness 
and justice of the Tzar. Its historical path has been and is 
still surroimded and obstructed by many obstacles and many 
trials ; but with the help of God it has overcome them in 
the past, is overcoming them in the present, and will over- 
come them in the future ! 




* Light, more light I ' murmured Goethe on his death- 
bed. We Eussians are in more urgent need of light 
in order to live. Mr. Aksakoff last month said, * Light I 
light ! as much light as possible — that is what Bussia 
now requires. Li light are health, force, power, and 
the possibility of recovery.' That light, he said, comes 
to us chiefly from abroad, and we owe most of it to 
two English correspondents — Mr. MacGahan and Mr. 
Forbes. Li the name of the whole of the Russian 
people, which even in its remotest villages has read 
and re-read their letters, Mr. Aksakoff* thanked these 
Englishmen, not only for their sympathy, but still 
more for * the calm, bitter truths ' which they had 

Since Mr. Aksakoff* spoke Mr. Forbes has pubUshed 
an article in the Nineteenth Century} He praises my 

* This letter was written in reply to an article by Mr. A. Forbes (a 
correspondent of the DaQy News) in the Nineteenth Century of November, 
1877, on ' Russians, Turks, and Bulgarians at the Seat of War/ 

' Mr. Archibald Forbes, in an article in the Nineteenth Century ^ of 
Januaiy, 1880, on ' War Correspondents and the Authorities/ says, that 
' during the past six months, war correspondents have been altogether 
prohibited from accompanying a British army in the field,' which he 
seems to think is hardly an advance upon the custom of the ' barbarous 
Muscovite,' who, ' in the recent war admitted all comers decently vouched 

62 The Russian People and the War. 

countrymen, and I thank him for doing them justice.^ 

for on very umple stipulationB.* Mr. Forbes remarks : ' The Russians 
are wise in their generation. At Plevna, in July, 1877, they sustained a 
terrible reverse. It fell to the present writer to record that event in its 
sadness alike and its unavailing heroism. The record neither spared 
blame nor stinted praise. Its author did his work in the full conviction 
that his candour would cost him his permission to witness the succeeding 
episodes of the campaign. But the Russian military authorities, recog- 
nising the solid virtue of truthfulness, accepted his narrative of the 
battle, and authorised its publication in their home newspapers, with 
their imprimatur on it as an accurate record of a miserable failure relieved 
by gallant courage.' 

^ Mr. Forbes's testimony to the character of the Russian soldier 
may perhaps be forgotten. I therefore reproduce it here. He says : 

'The Russian private is the finest material for a soldier that the 
world affords. He i s an extraordinary marcher, he never grumbles, he 
is sincerely pious according to his narrow lights; and this, with his 
whole-hearted devotion to the Czar and his constitutional courage, com 
bines to make him willing, prompt, and brave in battle. He is a de- 
lightful comrade, his good humour is inexhaustible, he is humane, he has 
a certain genuine and unobtru^ve magnanimity, and never decries an 
enemy. As for Russian '' atrocities," * on soul and conscience,' exclaims 
Mr. Forbes, with solemn emphasLs, ' I believe the allegations of atrocities 
to be utterly &lse. Constantly accompanying the Cossacks in recon- 
naissances, I never noticed even any disposition to cruelty; Cossack 
lances and Russian sabres wrought no barbarity on defenceless men, 
women, and children. The Rusaan of my experience is instinctively 
a humane man, with a strong innate sense of the manliness of fair 

In confirmation of this testimony of Mr. Forbes, is the evidence of 
an eye-witness whose experience during and subsequent to the war was 
much more extensive. He dates from Bucharest, February 2, and his 
letter appeared in the TimeB on February 6, 1880 : — 

' I have seen so many references in English journals of recent date to 
the Mussulmans having been driven from Bulgaria that it appears to be 
necessary once more to repeat the denial which the facts of the case 
demand. The truth is, that the Mussulmans were not driven from Bul- 
garia, and / defy any one to nierUion one tolitary village from which the 
Mussulman population was expelled during the late war. In all cases in 
which the Turkish peasants ran away at the approach of the Russian 
forces their exodus was the result of their own feturs or of the counsels of 
their Turkish superiors. During the campaign I made the most minute 
enquiries on this subject of the Turks themselves who remained inside 
the Russian lines, and never found a tingle case in which a Mussulman 
was interfered with in any way whatever. I saw many Turks bringing 

The Bulgarians and their Liberators. 63 

He criticises their administration, and I thank him 
still more for his candour in assisting us to remedy 
our shortcomings. He severely condemns some of 
our military commanders, and, if true, these things 
cannot be too plainly exposed. We are not infallible, 
we Eussians, as is the Holy Father, whose infaUibility, 
however, has not prevented him from sympathising 
with the infidels against whom his no less infallible 
predecessors preached crusades. Like other nations, 
we make mistakes, and no one can do us better service 
than by pointing them out. Mr. Forbes might have 
spared us a few sneers, but these we can overlook. 
As a Bussian, I do not complain. 

But as a Slav I protest against the way in which 
he abuses the Bulgarians. I am indignant at these 

in supplies for the Rufisians, and they always told me that they were 
paid for their material. Since the war I have visited the country occu- 
pied by the Kussians, and in the various villages in which the Mussul- 
mans remained in their homes they invariably assured me that they had 
not only been unmolested, but had sold all their produce to the Rusdans 
for higher prices than they had received in former years. Even in Turkish 
villages lying on both sides of a chausiSe where thousands upon thousands 
of soldiers had passed I was assured that they had lost nothing. It is, 
however, true that, with very few exceptions, the houses of Turks who 
fled before the advanced guards of the Russians have been destroyed. 
AH abandoned property was seized by Bulgarians or soldiers, generally by 
the former, and the bimds of Mussulman fugitives, while on the road in 
flight, were in a great many esses most cruelly and brutally treated by the 
Bulgarians whom they encountered en route. Every Turk with whom I 
have conversed since the war cordially cursed the Kaimakam or Pasha 
who advised them to flee from the Russian advance; and when the 
former reddents of ruined villages, deserted by their owners, returned 
after the conclusion of peace, and found their fellow Mussulmans in 
adjoining hamlets, who had remained inside the Russian lines, with flocks, 
herds, and houses unmolested, and with more hard silver in their pockets 
than they had ever had before, their own hapless condition, contrasted 
with the prosperity of their neighbours, fully justified the opprobrioua 
•pithets bestowed upon their former Kaimakams/ 

64 The Russian People and the War. 

virulent attacka upoD the feeble and those who have 
no helper. Better — far better — that he should de- 
nounce us and spare them. We are strong, but 
they, the weak, the wretched, the oppressed — is it 
manly to heap insults upon such as these? They 
cannot reply. They cannot resent his abuse, no matr 
ter how undeserved. And it is undeserved ! Mr. 
Forbes has never been for a single day in Bulgaria 
under Turkish rule. He has only seen Bulgarians 
after the Pasha, the Zaptieh, the Tcherkess, and the 
Bashi-Bazouk had fled * bag and baggage ' before our 
liberating army. How is he to know what they 
suffered ? Mr. KacGlahan, who visited Bulgaria when 
the Turk was in possession, gives a very different ac- 
count of the happiness of the Bulgarian. Mr. Forbes 
has never been across the Balkans. He has never 
been near the scene of the atrocities. But he admits 
that the Turks are ' persistent, indomitable barbarians.' 
He says they ' wield the axe and the chopper of ruth- 
less savages,' that they mutilate the dead and torture 
the wounded. The Bulgarians are at the mercy of 
these men. Unless they become renegades, — and the 
Greeks and other Europeans who serve Turkish in- 
terests and persecute the Christians are the very 
worst kind of renegades, — their complmnts and testi- 
monies are not accepted by the Turkish tribunals. 
Power which elsewhere is beheved to be too vast to 
be entrusted to the most civiUsed of men, in Bulgaria 
is exercised by the Ottoman barbarians, and from 
their will there is no appeal. 

In Russia we sometimes indignantly say that the 

The Bulgarians and their Liberators 65 

heart of England is eaten up with love of gold. 
Surely that cannot be true. Still, what is Mr. Forbes's 
argument, so eagerly repeated by Turkophiles ? Is it 
not based upon a belief that money is everything ? 
The Bulgarian, unlike * Devonshire GUes,' has more 
than nine shillings a week. The fact, in the first 
place, is not general, but, if it were, does it prove 
that therefore he needs no liberation? His wives 
and daughters are at the mercy of the Zaptieh. But 
is woman's honour really nothing compared with 
* nine shillings a week * ? 

Eussians are pretty good judges of courage. 
Well, there is not one Russian, who fought side by 
side with the Bulgarians, who does not praise their 
courage and their simple, determined way of meeting 
death. Mr. Forbes himself, in his description of the 
Shipka battles, showed that he shared Russian views 
upon this matter. A certain way of sacrificing life is 
a very charming argument in favour of the moral 
character of the nation. 

The result of Turkish oppression on the character 
of the Bulgarians is not favourable. But even that, 
in Mr. Forbes's eyes, tells in favour of the Turks, as 
the Bulgarians are so degraded they are not worth 
saving. K four centuries of Turkish misrule have 
brutalised these poor Bulgarians, is it not time that it 
ceased ? Permit me to extract some words of Earl 
Russell's I find in a pamphlet, given to me by Messrs. 
Zancoff and BalabanofT, the Bulgarian delegates. He 
wrote : * It would indeed be a hopeless case for 
mankind if despotism were thus allowed to take ad- 


66 The Russian People and the War. 

vantf^e of its own wrong, and to bring the eTidencc 
of its own Crimea as the title-deeds of its right. It 
would be, indeed, a strange perversion of justice 
if absolute Governments might say, "Look how 
ignorant, base, false, and cruel people have become 
under our sway : therefore we have a right to retain 
them in eternal subjection, in everlasting slavery." ' 
Yet this * strange perversion of justice ' is employed 
in order to damage the cause of the Southern Slavs.' 

* Mr. HkcGoh&n, who knew the BtdgaiuDS much better thui aDj 
othet correBpondent of the Eii);liah press, Bnd certunlj than Hr. Forhev, 
wrote of them in the DaSy Ne«m, October 30, 1877 :— ' The; ue a quiet, 
peaceable, hard-worldDg, thriftj people, more adapted to drilisatioa and 
to cirilised Ufa than perhaps anj other of the SlaT races. Thaj are a 
miserable, wretched, downtrodden race, now gagged, bound hand and 
foot, irith nobodj to plead tbeir causa. The attacks that have been made 
on them, the slanders, accnsatioDt, and Uee that have been heaped up 
against them, are disgraceAil, shameful, and nnworthj anybody who has 
the least r^;ard for justice and fiiir play.' idir Henry Havelock's testi- 
mony as to the Bulgarian character contradicts that of Mr. Forbes, and 
confirms that of Mr. MacGahan. On his return from Bulgaria, Sir Henry 
HsTelock told his constituents be did not think the Bulgarians deaerring 
of the abuse they had receired. 'He bad lived in their villages and tLey 
were undoubtedly a timid people, and in some respects a selfish people. 
These were vices inherent in a people trodden down for the last four 
hundred years. On the other band, he would say that he believed the 
Bulgarians were improvable, and that they were patriotic and truthful. 
The sight that struck a stranger was that in the Bulgarian village there 
was first of all a fine church, and that too where people seemed to have a 
difficulty in making both ends meet. The next thing they saw was a 
magnificent Echoolboui^e. Among the Bulgarians there was a universal 
love of leamingf and of improving themselves when opportunity occurred. 
There were many hundreds of them who had been educated in the 
American Colleges in Constantinople, or in the Collegas of Roumania. 
These were educated, refined men, speaking four or five langusgee, as 
attached to liberty aa we ourselves, and quite as capable of making use of 
it. Russia has found it necessary to raise a Bulgarian legion, which con- 
risted of Bulgarians, who were sent into action for the first time at Eski- 
Zagra. That legion numbered 1,800 Bulgarians.and though fortune was 
against the Russiana.outof the 1,800 men, 800 remuned wounded or 
killed upon the field. He thought the people who could act in this 

Tlie Bidgarians and their Liberators, C7 

The Eussian administration, according to Mr. 
Forbes, is so very corrupt that a French corre- 
spondent has employed himself in collecting and 
authenticating cases of peculation with a view to its 
future pubUcation. K that French correspondent 
does his work thoroughly he will be entitled to the 
gratitude of the Eussian people. There are corrupt 
contractors I suppose in Eoumania, as there have 
always been in all wars, and perhaps always will be, 
and we are more interested in their detection and 
punishment even than Mr. Forbes. But it is a 
mistake to attach so exaggerated importance to such 
stories. Gambetta's contractors sold the new levies 
paper-soled boots. Great fortunes were made by 
dishonest purveyors to the army of the Potomac ; and 
the Enghsh army in the Crimea was not too well 
served at the commencement of the war. Is there 
no bribing in England — ^not even among the detective 
poUce ? ^ Are * tips ' and ' commissions ' known only 
in Eussia ? But this is beside the question. If Mr. 
Forbes will substantiate his accusations, we will thank 
liim for reveahng the weak places in our armour. 
The charge that Eussian oflScers are willing to betray 
their country for a bribe is too serious to be made in 
such vague terms. It ought either to be supported with 
details, dates, and names, or it ought not to be made 
at all. Vagueness in a case Hke this is simply cruel to 

way during a first esaay in war were not unworthy of efforts to improve 

^ In November 1877| when this letter was written, the English 
papers were full of reports of the trial and conviction of London dr« 
tectivca on char^.«« of corruption. 

Y *J 

68 The Russian People and the War. 

the whole Bussian army. At present it cannot be 
investigated ; but, aa an act of simple justice, Mr. 
Forbes should so far overcome his ' melancholy * as 
to enable the Bussian nation to punish these traitors. 
One word more about our officers. I am not a 
military authority, and do not meddle with these 
things. Englishmen, of coxirse, who never have any 
little difficulties between the Horse Guards and the 
War Office, and who select their Commander-in-Chief, 
not because he is a Boyal Highness, but solely because 
he is the greatest military genius in the land, cannot 
understand the existence of such a thing as favoiuitism 
in the army. But it is not necessary to resort to 
such an argument to explain the absence of those 
generals named by Mr. Forbes &om the seat of war. 
Todleben, for instance, who, according to Mr. Forbes, 
was only sent for as a last resource, was engaged at 
the beginning of the campaign in putting the Baltic 
ports in a position to resist the anticipated attack of 
the English fleet. Kaufmann remained in Turkestan 
because he of aU men was best fitted for the arduous 
and responsible work of governing Central Asia. 
Only foreigners consider Turkestan a sinecure or a 
Paradise. As for the ' neglected retirement ' ot 
Prince Bariatinsky, it is the usual accusation that the 
Bariatinskys are in too great favour at Court. Both 
charges cannot be true, and one may be left to an- 
swer the other. Count Kotzebue is in command in 
Warsaw, nor is the position one to be despised. As 
for the Uon-hearted Tchernayeff, to whom I am 
lieartily glad to see Mr. Forbes pays a well-merited 

The Bulgarians and their Liberators. 69 

word of praise, we regret as mucli as any one that 
he was not permitted to take a prominent part in 
the campaign. But can Englishmen not suspect the 
reason why the General who fought against Turkey 
when Bussia was at peace, is not appointed at once 
to high command now that Eussia is at war? No 
one fought in Servia without first resigning his 
commission in the Bussian army, and diplomatic 
susceptibilities might be ofiended if the Bussian 
Government were so completely to condone the part 
played by Tchernayeff in the Servian War.^ 

In conclusion, let me say that Mr. Forbes, as 
unfortunately so many of our critics, generalises too 
hastily from imperfect data. He jumps to erroneous 
conclusions, and prefers his own theories to the well- 
attested evidence of trustworthy eye-witnesses. Mr. 
AksakofT thanked him for stating ' calm and bitter 
truths.' The statements in his last article may be 
* bitter,* but they certainly are not ' calm,* and many 
of them as little deserve the name of * truths.' 

* See antej AkBakoflTs Speech on Rusaian KeTerses, p. 57. 

■ The Russian People ami the War. 



Pletna fell in December, 1877. Before the New 
Year our armies were across the Balkans driving 
before them the defeated and disorganised hosts of 
the Turks. But by the very triumphs of our troops 
the interest of the Russian people was directed from 
the seat of war in the Balkans to the diplomatic 
campaign in the capitals of Europe, and especially in 
London. Those who had noted with eagerness the 
professions of English sympathy with the Slavs in 
1876 and 1877 looked forward with some anxiety to 
see whether at the critical moment these professions 
would be justified by deeds. The others, who had 
Itestowed but little attention on the preceding phases 
of the diplomatic conflict, beard with indignation that 
it was possible the fruits of their victories might be 
snatched from them by the intervention of foreign 
Powers. Hence it happened that the attention of 
Russians was concentrated upon England just at the 
time when England was most hostile, not merely to 
Russia, but to the cause of liberty in the East. Those 
who expected the least were not the most disappointed, 
and those who had always declared that England was 
insincere in her professions of sympathy for the 

After Plevna . 71 

Bulgarians found only too many proofs in the policy 
of the English Government to support their views. 
Bussia, her hand upon her sword, hstened impatiently 
for some clear declaration of England's pohcy, either 
of peace or war, but it only heard across the 
Continent a confused chorus of blustering voices 
singing ' Eule Britannia ' and the Jingo Song.^ During 
that period of prolonged anxiety, some faint idea of 
the feelings of the Russian people may be gathered 
from the following extracts from letters written from 
Moscow between January and April 1878, giving at 
foot their dates.* 

We Uve in a state of feverish excitement. Expecting 
the worst, we are compelled to take precautions. Already 
for spring are ordered great miUtary preparations. More 
sacrifices, more lives, more treasure ! Well, so be it, if it 
must be so. We will not, dare not, shrink from obeying the 
voice of duty ; but my heart sinks within me when I think 
that our two nations may very shortly be at war. Is it 
England's will that the Slavs should not be free ? Or only 
Lord Beaconsfield's ? We are watching with wonder to see 
whether your ParUament will vote the money for the war. 
We have respected every British interest which the English 
Government specified. We have made concessions which as 
a Bussian I think you have had no right to demand, and 
such as you never would have made to Russia. 

It is impossible for us to listen to those who would re- 
estabUsh the Turkish Government in Bulgaria, which it cost 
so many precious lives to overthrow. Is it so imreasonable ? 
Put yourself in oiu" place. If all England was one vast 
ambulance, if there was not a town or village which had not 

1 In England, as in Russia, after the fall of Plevna, equal uncertainty 
preyailed as to the prohable course of £ngland*8 policy. — Vide Appendix, 
Mr. Froude*s preface to 1% Euuia wrong f 
^ January H, 1878. 

72 Tke Rusisian People and the War. 

its wounded to watch and its dead to lament, perhaps even 
your Queen might be as determined as our Emperor not to 
sacrifice the sacrifices of his people by consenting to a 
shameful peace which left unremoved the causes of the war. 
Not for that did our brave soldiers perform these deeds of 
prowess, in spite of all the horrible difficulties and obstacles } 

of a Balkan winter, which have no parallel in history. 

• ••••• 

The indignation here is very great.^ We are almost as 
disappointed with our Government for its want of energy as 
we are indignant with yours for its insults and menaces. 

Out of deference to British susceptibilities, out of regard 
to the imaginary interests of your Government — which firom 
the first has been hostile to the cause for which we have shed 
rivers of our blood ~ we consented not to enter Constantinople, 
if England abstained firom acts of hostility. And how were 
we rewarded for our concessions ? No sooner is our heroic 
army brought to a halt within sight of the distant domes of 
Constantinople, out of deference to the pledges given to 
your Ministers, than we are startled with the news that the 
English fleet is ordered to the Bosphorus ! 

Our promise not to enter Constantinople was strictly con- 
ditional upon England preserving a strictly neutral attitude. 
As we were grateful to your Cabinet for securing the re- 
jection of the Protocol, which enabled us to liberate our 
brethren in Bulgaria, so were we not less grateful to your 
Ministers for opening to us the gates of Constantinople.' 
But we were disappointed. Our statesmen, it seems, had 
not even yet exhausted their concessions. If our Govern- 
ment had listened to the unanimous voice of the Bussian 
people, instead of sending useless warnings, they would have 
taken the only step, at once rational and dignified, by oc- 
cupying Constantinople without further loss of time. They 

' February f§, 1878. 

' This is also the opiDion of the Duke of Argyll : ' It cannot be 
denied that it was precisely such a step aa Russia would have desired if 
she had wished for an excuse to occupy Constantinople.' — Eadem 
QueUian, vol. ii. p. 93. 

After Plevna. 73 

have not done that ; and in Moscow, as elsewhere in Bussia, 
there are everywhere heard the most vehement expressions 
of disappointment and of indignation. 

Straightforward manly fighting against us would have 
created far less irritation here than the malice with which 
the English Government has persisted in its provocations all 
through this trying time.* We can respect an honest enemy. 
We are irritated by the intentional insults of a professed 
neutral. On every side military preparations are being 
pushed forward with great rapidity. Millions upon millions 
are being spent in order that we may be ready if Lord 
Beaconsfield persists in humiliating us first and declaring 
war afterwards. It is a terrible prospect. Everywhere the 
horizon is dark. We have, however, only ourselves to blame. 
If it is a sin for a woman to please everybody, it is still 
worse for a Government to have that weakness. For every 
concession we have been rewarded by an insult. If the voice 
of the Bussian nation had been heard there would have 
been but short work made with these repeated deferences to 
Lord Beaconsfield. We should have done our duty without 
hampering ourselves with unnecessary engagements to re- 
spect limits which the English Government violates itself 
the moment it suits it. It was the English, and not the 
Bussians, who forced the Dardanelles, the Treaty of Paris 

The exact terms of peace from San Stefano are published 
here, and do not by any means give unmixed satisfaction. 
Everybody is delighted with the extension of Montenegro. 
Bulgaria is not badly ofif; but it would be infinitely better if 
no European interference were allowed next year. Bosnia 
and the Herzegovina have been sacrificed — to please Austria. 
Our troops are deeply humiliated by not being permitted to 
march through Constantinople. The Bulgarian fortresses are 
to be demolished — to please Europe. Adrianople remains 
Turkish — to please England and the Sultan. Bessarabia 

' March V. 1878. 

74 The Russian People and the War. 

will only be taken from Bomnania in exchange for the 
Dobrudscha. The bargain ie not a bad one for Boumania. 
The narrow strip of Beesarabia belonged to Buseia before 
Roumania even enstod. It was in 1856 given up to Turkey, 
not even to Moldavia. In 1792, by the Treaty of Jaesy, 
Russia exacted from Turkey the right to protect Moldavia, 
and twenty years afterwards she brought from the Hospodar 
of Moldavia the district of Mourouri, which is now called 
Bessarabia. It« value to us arises chiefly because it wag 
torn away from us after the Crimean War. On the whole, 
while the Slavs are freed, England has spoiled our work. 
But, as I have said, it is our own bult, for why should we 
have permitted her to influence our deeds ? 

Russia was abused in England for attacking the inde- 
pendence of the Sultan, and was accused of a desire to 
change the law of the Straits. What do we see to-day ? ' 
England forces the Dardanelles. Her ironclads anchor in 
Turkish waters. The Sultan's proteet is ignored by his 
best friends. The much-vaunted independence of the Turk 
is categorically denied. By her own acts England abolishes 
the Puris Treaty. In international law the forcing of the 
Dardanelles is as much an invasion of Turkey as oar passage 
of the Danube. England in this follows onr example, with 
a diflerence. She waits till her ally is helpless to invade 
her waters, and she acts solely for her own interest. 

We welcome your adhesion to the cause which our 
sacrifices have rendered it safe for you to adopt. But in 
your enthusiastic zeal you overdo it. Our heroic volunteers 
rallied to the aid of the Slavs in the Servian War, and died 
in the cause to which they had devoted their lives. You 
abused them for a glaring violation of neutrality, which could 
only have been committed by so lawless a nation as Russia. 
One year later, when we went to liberate Bulgaria, England 
solemnly proclaimed her neutrality and forbade any English- 
man helping (lie belligerents. With regard to helping us. 

i4/ter Plevna. 75 

nothing could exceed the respect paid to that proclamation. 
But on the other side it was different. The Turks had 
volunteers in plenty from England — Her Majesty's proclama- 
tion notwithstanding. You sent an admiral to command 
the Turkish ironclads and a general fresh from penance to 
command a Turkish army. There were others also, but 
again there was a difference. Our volunteers sacrificed 
everything — home, family, friends, country, life itself — in 
order to free their brethren, and one-third fell on Servian 
soil. Your volunteers, less idealistic and more practical, sold 
their services for gold, and all of them seem to have suc- 
ceeded pretty well in preserving their precious skin. 

English Turkophiles objected to our arming before the 
Constantinople 'Conference — as a * menace to Europe.' But 
whilst the Berlin Congress was talked of, was England com- 
pletely forgetful of guns and loaded revolvers ? Is the 
six millions vote not an imitation of a partial Russian 
mobilisation ? 

Lord Salisbiuy's Circular fills everyone with indignation.* 
* British interests ' no longer availing to pick a quarrel with 
Bussia, your Government must now reward the respect we 
showed for the interests you mentioned, by making Turkish 
power a British interest! Of course, if you insist upon 
restoring the jurisdiction of the Sultan, there can be no other 
issue than war. But unless your Government means to 
force us to fight, why demand what we cannot concede ? 

We know too well what war is to think of a new war 
with a light heart. Moscow is silent and sad, although 
sustained by the consciousness of having achieved a great 
success in a heroic cause. Few households but mourn for 
some one who has perished in the fight. Russia is not rich — 
better be poor than be suffocated with wealth. I would 
that Russia took nothing for herself — nothing at all. But 
we cannot sacrifice our honour, forget our sacred duty, and 
abandon our brethren in Bulgaria to the vengeance of the 

1 April IS IfiTfl 

76 7^ Russian People and the War. 

Turks, Is that not what Lord Sallsbiuy wants ? To ieax 
up our Treaty, and to leave these millions of Slavs, who 
depend entirely upon us for freedom and protection, to the 
tender mercies of their oppressors ? ' 

Turkophiles say * Europe will protect Bulgaria.* Europe 
is a mythological lady who does nothing but stupid mischief 
when she interferes with the Slavs. Much to our regret, 
Bosnia and the Heiz^ovina were left to the protection of 
Europe — and has Europe protected them? There are still 
outrages, atrocities, refugees — all is unchanged. So it would 
be in Bulgaria if Russia ceased to guard the liberties which 
she has won. 

You indulge in stj^nge illusions when yon say Bulgaria 
will be BuBsian if it is not Turkish. Is Greece Russian — 
Greece that owed her independence chiefly to us? Is 
Roumania Russian — Boumania whose liberties we defended 
in so many wars? The point is worth insisting on. We 
Russians have very clear views on this matter, and no 

We are not particularly satisfied with the San Ste&no 
Treaty. It might bare been much better. Montenegro 
and Bulgaria are not ill treated ; but the Herzegovina, 
Bosnia, Servia, Epirus, Thessaly, Albania — we would have 
made them all really happy if we could only have consulted 
the Liberals of England and the Slavs of Austria, and not 
the English and Austrian Cabinets. With Lord Beaconsfield 
and the Magyars to please, our work has been spoiled. 

As for the Greek provinces, that is England's fiinlt. If 
poor King George had dared to disobey Lord Beaconsfield, 
Epirus and Thessaly would belong to him now. But 
RuBsiaDs are anxious to give every support possible to 
Greece. Poor Greece, she trembles with fear because Eng- 
land can destroy her at a moment's notice ! but still we 
hope she may receive her provinces. 

' Fortunfttelf , s few weeka later. Lord SalialMiry jndidouilj modified 
bis views, and concluded the eecnit agrcemeDt with Oottnt Schouraloff, 
in which praclicoUy be abandoued the pontion token up in tiis Ciicnlar. 




* The determination of the Government is for neutral- 
ity. But for what neutrality ? The House will give me 
leave to say for an honest and real neutrality. Any 
other would be unworthy of the nation. The choice 
is between neutrality and war. K we mean war, let 
us openly choose it, but if we mean neutrality, let it 
not be neutrality under the mask of non-interference 
with one party whilst a secret support is given to the 
other. If you ask me what are the lines, rules, and 
limits of a just neutrality, I will tell you them in one 
word. There is a golden maxim which applies as 
well to politics as to morals — " Do unto others as you 
would that others should do unto you." But to 
England I say, " Do unto others what you have made 
others do unto you." ' ^ 

So spoke Mr. Canning in 1823 concerning the 
policy of England in relation to the French Ex- 
pedition to Spain, and if Mr. Canning had been in 
Lord Beaconsfield's place when the Eastern question 
was reopened in 1876, the relations between England 
and Russia would have been very different from 

' Memoirs of Cmming, pp. 485-0. 

78 The Russian People and the War. 

what, unfortunately, they are to-day. For Mr. Can- 
ning would have pursued * a policy worthy of 
England,' whereas Lord Beaconsfield has persistently 
acted upon that unworthy policy which Mr. Canning 
denounced more than half a century ago. How often 
the best voices in England use almost the same words 
and express the same counsels as those which Bussia 
has been uttering all through the troubles in the 
East. When the European concert was destroyed 
by England's refusal to coerce the Turks on behalf of 
the Bulgarians, as Mr. Canning coerced the Turks on 
behalf of the Greeks, all that Eussia asked for — and 
surely it was not too much to ask — ^was that England 
would not pursue a policy which Mr. Canning 
branded as ' unworthy of the nation.' Unfortunately 
this boon, small as it was, was denied to us, and the 
pretended neutraUty of the English Government 
during the war excited the bitterest feelings in 
Russia, which were still more inflamed by its active 
intervention at the Congress for the re-enslavement of 
Southern Bulgaria. 

It is better not to reopen the old sores. They 
are, however, far from healed, but festering; and it 
may not be useless simply to express the universal 
feeling excited in Russia by your sham neutrality. 

No one can object to that phrase 'sham neu- 
trality,' for English neutraUty during the war was 
exactly defined by Mr. Canning as that which is 
neither honest, nor real, nor just — ' Neutrality with 
the mask of non-interference with one party, whilst a 
covert support is given to the other.' It is always 

English Neutrality. 79 

difficult to put oneself in another's place ; but if Mr 
Canning's principle is a just one, perhaps you could 
do that if you imagined Eussia playing the part in 
Afghanistan that England played in our war with 

The parallel, I admit, is not diplomatically exact. 
Afghanistan is ' beyond the sphere of Kussian in- 
terests.' Turkey, on the other hand, is a matter of 
concern to all the Powers. But these distinctions are 
Uttle thought of on the battle-field. Their place is 
in the Cabinet, not in the camp ; and although poli- 
ticians would be more scandalised by Eussian neu- 
trahty a VAngUiise in Afghanistan, the popular heart 
is more keenly touched by such covert interference 
as took place in 1877 in Constantinople than by any- 
thing we could do at Cabul. 

Eussia's war in Bulgaria to Eussians was a re- 
ligious, humanitarian, unselfish struggle, to Uberate 
kinsfolk from cruel oppression — an object in which 
England professed to be deeply interested. 

England's war in Afghanistan is a war confess- 
edly of prestige, of conquest, of rivalry between Eng- 
land and Eussia. If Eussia had interfered covertly 
to thwart it, however guilty she might be of violating 
diplomatic compacts, she would not be interfering to 
frustrate an object which she ostentatiously professed 
to have at heart. 

How, then, would you like us to do to you in 
Afghanistan as you did to us in Turkey ? Suppose 
as a * delicate mark of attention ' we had sent the 
bitterest and most unscrupulous Anglophobe we could 

80 The Russian People and the War. 

find in all Eussia to represent us at Cabul, wliose 
notorious conviction was that the preservation of the 
Afghan kingdom was indispensable to Eussian in- 
terests, and permitted him to assure the Ameer that 
the Emperor * felt true sympathy for him, and tlie 
hveUest concern in his happiness and welfare.' 
Suppose, further, that the whole time of that Anglo- 
phobe Ambassador was taken up in intriguing against 
the progress of the British armies, tel^raphing to 
St. Petersburg horrible legends of British atrocities, 
and consulting with the Ameer how best to secure 
the defeat of the English invaders and the intervention 
of Eussia. 

Would you regard that as an honest and just 
neutrality ? 

It is no new thing in diplomacy for your Ambas- 
sador at Constantinople to pursue a much more pro- 
nounced pro-Turkish policy than that which is pro- 
fessed at Downing Street. Let me recall one striking 
instance of this which occurred a Uttle more than a 
hundred years ago. It furnishes a curious precedent 
for the conduct 6f Sir Austin Layard ; but I regret 
to say the British Cabinet has not followed the good 
example of the Cabinet of Lord North. 

In 1772 England was represented at Constanti- 
nople by Mr. Murray, who shared your present 
Ambassador's notions about the terrible danger of 
* Eussian aggression,' and encouraged the Turks to 
continue their war against Eussia in the presumed 
interests of Great Britain and of Poland. His conduct 
brought upon him the grave reproof of the Earl of 

English Neutrality. 81 

Bochford, whose despatch of July 24, 1772, shows 
that English statesmen in those days had a keener 
sense of the duties of neutrality than appears to pre- 
vail in the Beaconsfield Cabinet. Lord Kochford 
wrote: — 

* His Majesty and his Ministers could not but con- 
sider as an extraordinary misapprehension of your 
duty the advice you have, on your own speculation, 
upon the intended dismemberment of Poland, taken 
upon you to give to the Porte, tending directly to 
retard the conclusion of that pacification which it 
has been his Majesty's constant wish to accelerate as 
much as possible. His Majesty,' Lord Eochford con- 
tinued, * was disposed to overlook the offence ; but if 
it should be made a ground of complaint against you 
by the Court of St. Petersburg, as is too probable, it 
will be difficult to find a vindication of so unfriendly 
a conduct in his Ambassador.' Referring to the par- 
tition of Poland, Mr. Murray was informed : * The 
commercial Powers have not thought it of such 
present importance as to make a direct opposition to 
it or enter into action (as your Excellency supposes 
necessary) to prevent it. The King is still less in- 
cUned to try the indirect method of encouraging the 
continuance of a Turkish war, which, exclusive of the 
evils it carries with it of interruption of commerce 
and devastation, could by no means answer the end 
in a manner desirable to Great Britain. For if car- 
ried on successfully by Eussia the Porte must be 
more and more unable to interfere in regard to the 
independence of Poland, and, if unsuccessfully, it 

82 The Russian People and the War. 

must greatly weaken an Empire, which, although 
there has not been lately shown on their part that 
openness and confidence in his Majesty which he 
justly deserves, he cannot but look upon, neverthe- 
less, as a natural ally of his Crown, and with which 
he is likely sooner or later to be closely connected.' * 

This, however, by the way. The appointment of 
Sir Austin Layard, unfortunately, was only the be- 
ginning of the mischief. Suppose the Persians sent a 
contingent to assist the Afghans, and Bussia were to 
forbid you to land a single soldier on the Persian 
coast, or show a single gunboat on the Persian Gulf, 
and then add to these prohibitions a veto upon, first, 
the annexations, and then even the occupation of the 
city ofCabul. For Persia, read i^ypt, and forCabuI, 
Constantinople, and you have exactly two conditions 
of your neutrality in the recent war. 

These conditions were at least open and straight- 
forward. But suppose the most efiective force under 
the A%han standard was commanded by a Husaian 
officer in receipt of r^ular pay from the Eussian 
Exchequer until the war actually broke out, and that 
this force, led by this ex-Russian General, were to 
make raids upon the Indian plains, bombarding Indian 
cities with Russian guns, would England tolerate that 
singular manifestation of Russian ' neutrality P ' 

Wherein Ues the difference between such service 
by a Russian General and the operations of the 
Turkish Fleet under Admiral Hobart ? The first shell 
fired on the Danube into the Russian ranks was fired 

■ Mnbon'a Biitory of England, toI. V. App. p. 37-38. 

English Neutrality. 83 

by the English Admiral from an English gun, as he 
swept on an English-built gunboat down the river to 
the sea, amid the enthusiastic applause of the English 
press « 

In the American War the Government of the 
Union was indignant at EngUsh neutrality, but no 
Englishman commanded the fleets or armies of the 
Confederates. It was held to be an offence merely 
to build the ships and supply the weapons for the 
South. As Lowell sang : — ^:: ^ c.d<: w ; ^^ n ^ v^ 

You wonder why we're hot, John ? 
I Tour mark wuz on the guns, 
The neutral guns, thet shot, John, 
Our brothers an* our sons. 

Russia would have been well content if England's 
assistance to the Turks had been limited to the sup- 
ply of munitions of war to the Turks, although Russia 
has not even supplied a rifle to the Afghans, who, 
indeed, were armed by the English Government in 
hopes of their becoming our enemies. I think this 
latter fact will not be denied even by the * veracious ' 
Lord Salisbury. 

How would England have enjoyed the news that 
the Ameer had appointed a distinguished Russian 
cavalry oflScer to the post of General of Brigade in 
order to * raise and discipline ' a non-existent gendar- 
merie in A%hanistan ? Would you have heard with 
composure that, with the sanction and approval of 
the Russian Government, he had been joined by the 
following oflScers on half-pay — two colonels, three 
majors, seven captains, and an adjutant * — most of 

« Blue -Boo*— Turkey, I. (1S78), 461. 

o 2 

^4 The Rusaian People and the War. 

whom, in flagrant defiance of the proclamation of 
neutrality, took an active part in refflBting the British 
arms at Cabul ? 

I hardly think that if the A%hans at the battle of 
Charasiab had been commanded by a Bussian officer 
the English Government would have manifested the 
same composure which was displayed at St. Peters- 
burg when ex-Colonel Baker covered the retreat of 
Sulieman Fasha from the Balkans. 

And here, to anticipate objections, allow me to 
say that I am not going to defend the intervention of 
General Tchemayefi* in Servia firom the point of view 
of International Law. It was condemned at the time 
by our own Government, and can only be justified by 
referring to considerations of race, reli^on, and hu- 
manity, which only occasionally combine in sufficient 
lorce to justiiy such enterprises, and such ties, so far 
as I know, do not exist between the English and the 
Turks. But General Tchemayefi" in Servia should 
rather be compared to Sir Philip Sydney in Holland, 
of whom you may well be proud, than to Hobart 
Pacha in the Black Sea. 

England in her advance did her best to detach the 
hill tribes from Afghanistan, if not to turn their arms 
ag^nst the Ameer. 

If Russia had brought all her influence to bear in 
a contrary direction, and supported her representa- 
tives by an army corps in the passes of the Hindoo 
Eoosh, I fear we shoiild have had some little difficiilty 
in persuading Enghsh people that we were really ob- 

English Neutrality. 85 

serving neutrality, although we should be doing no 
more than you did in Greece. 

Even after the war was over, you subsidised the 
Lazes at Batoum, who were resisting our arms.^ This, 
I suppose, will not be denied. But it is not generally 
known to what an extent the English Government 
was committed by its officials to the support of the 
Turkish cause. I append in a footnote^ a curious 
manifesto signed by your Consuls Blunt and Merlin, 
which was addressed to the Hellenes, who had taken 
arms against the Turks in May, 1878. It is somewhat 
strange * neutrality ' which, even after peace was made 
with the Turks, permits your Consuls to describe 
Russia to the Greeks as ' the great and common enemy 
of yourselves and Europe.' 

Two unofficial Englishmen had a good deal to do in 
promoting the Rhodope insurrection ; and Sir Austin 
Layard exerted himself to the utmost to excite oppo- 

> Buke of AigyU, The Eastern Question, toI. ii. p. 137. 

' To the Greeks m Insurrection, 

Esteemed Hellenic chiefis and men. — We are sent by the GoTernment 
of our august Queen, the Sovereign of Great Britain, as mediators 
between yourselves, insurgents, and your fellow-countrymen the Mussul- 
mans. Both of you are men carrying on a struggle which menaces the 
ruin of both peoples — ^for the great and conmion enemy of yourselves and 
Europe has overrun with his armies Turkey in Europe and Asia, so that 
having abolished Mussulman sovereignty, it threatens to change to Slavs, 
both Mussulmans and Christians, to which, we believe, both peoples are 

Be united then, and after the enemy shall have been driven from your 
countiy, Europe, taking into consideration your just complaints, will 
accord to each what is right ; and thus, we are convinced, you will live 
together as brothers. In the name then of the Government of our august 
Sovereign we counsel you to lay down your arms. 

Signed Blunt, 


86 The Russian People and the War. 

sition to the Treaty of San Stefano, just as Mr. Butler 
Johnstone, professing to speak in the name of Lord 
Beaconsfield, is said to have eagerly advised the 
Turks to resist the pressure of the Constantinople 
Conference, while Lord Salisbury used quite a different 

I forbear to allude to the speeches wherein your 
Prime Minister encouraged openly the resistance of the 
Turks, for, perhaps, it is the Turks who have most 
reason to complain. 

Can you wonder that a neutrality a VAnglaise is 
regarded as very little better than war a la Russe ? 
* We were neutral,' reply some EngUshmen ; * but 
' we were bound to show a fiiendly neutrality to the 
Turks ; ' and, therefore, I suppose, a hostile neutrality 
to Eussia. * Neutrality and friendly ! ' once exclaimed 
^ Kossuth, * a steel hoop made of words.' Contradictio 
^^ '^n adjecto ! But English statesmen have themselves 
^ .y exposed the hollowness of the pretext. Earl Gran- 
w V ville, in his despatch to Count Bernsdorff of Septem- 

c^ . ber 15, 1870, wrote : * It seems hardly to admit of 
^^ doubt that neutrality, when it once departs from 
^ strict impartiaUty, runs the risk of altering its essence, 

and that the moment a neutral allows his im- 
partiality to be biassed by predilection for one of two 
belligerents, he ceases to be a neutral. The idea, 
therefore, of benevolent neutrality can mean little 
less than the extinction of neutrality.' Again, on 
October 21, Lord Granville wrote ; ' Good offices may 
be benevolent, but neutrality, like arbitration, cannot 
be so.' When Mr. Canning and Lord Granville, 

English Neutrality, 87 

EngKsh Foreign Ministers in 1823 and 1870, agree in 
condemning such a * neutrality ' practised by England 
in the late war, need you be surprised if the conduct 
of the English Government during the recent war has 
not contributed to the realisation of that cordial 
friendship between England and Bussia which is so 
desirable for both ? 

The Ruasian People and Ae War. 



Rballt, it ia quite/ bewildering I Transformation 
sceDee succeed each other so rapidly that one 
b^ins to lose consciousness of one's own identity I It 
is but six months ago that I was in England. EngUsh- 
men then, although a Uttle indignant at the sufferings 
of their interesting protigi^ the Turk, still retdned 
their self-possession. Even those who hated us poor 
Russians — describing us, as Mr. Carlyle said, as if we 
were ' evil spirits ' — at least paid us the compliment 
of beUeving that we were not mere children. Before 
we took Plevna there were many who attributed all 
sorts of daring designs to my countrymen. They 
were accused of meditating the annexation of Con- 
stantinople, the invasion of India, the capture of 
Egypt, the subjugation of the world, and some other 
enterprises equally easy. * Russia is ruthless, reck- 
less ; her ambition and audacity have no bounds,' 
cried some very penetrating politicians. I ventured 
sometimes to protest, and, of course, protested in 

' This IfiUer wm written from Hoacow, an Jane 7, 1878, on the Eva 
of theCongreu, when the &ct that the SchounlofTSAliilNujHeiiiotandum 
had anDulled the Salialmry (HrcnUr, was u jet only koown to the three 
OoveToments who were priry to its negotiation, and to Mr. Marrin— the 
indiscreet copjiit of the Englisb Foreign Office. 

On the Eve of the Congress. 89 

vain. One likes to be feared, but one is bound in 
honour to calm people whose fear takes the shape of 
a kind of moral paralysis. But the more frankly I 
spoke, the less were my words accepted. * Russia,' I 
was told, ' might veil her designs while she was still 
in the midst of the battle ; but the moment she 
is victorious, she'll throw off the mask, and will reveal 
the natural aggressiveness of a military despotism,' 
and so on. 

Well, Eussia has been victorious. Moltke, the 
great German military genius, never admitted for one 
moment that our troops could pass the Balkans in 
winter time. The Russians did, however, undertake 
that impossible thing, and have succeeded. They are 
now, and for many, many weeks past have been, 
at the gates of Constantinople. The whole of the 
world is now informed of the San Stefano Treaty. 
Far from fulfilling the fears of my English friends, 
Russia has displayed a magnanimity which is even 
culpable. The prostrate barbarian is not only al- 
lowed to live, but even to tyrannise still over a great 
many Christians. In that Preliminary Treaty Russia 
is wrong, and I am jealous of the good which united 
Europe may do in improving it^ whilst Russia had 
the power to strike the great blow herself. We lost 
more than one hundred thousand Russians, and what 
Russians P the best, most self-sacrificing and gallant 
men we had — ^in order to stop half-way, and leave 
everything unfinished. 

' Jealousy, alas ! quite unfounded, for as the result proved, United 
Europe did anything but improve it. 

aO The Russian People and the War. 

People tell me here, ' Oh ! but you see we are on 
good terms yet with England ; we could not foiget 
her wishes.' Of course, if our first object in life is to 
please Lord Beaconsfield we are right in being wrong. 
But I don't see that in the least, and not for the 
life of me shall I ever take your Premier as the best 
representative of the real England. I know many 
of your countrymen, as generous and as chivalrous 
aa some of our departed Bussian friends ; and I 
think it unjust not to insist upon this point, even 
if Lord Beaconsfield should choose the Congress as 
a new arena for his threats and insults, and even if 
war between Bussia and England should be the 
result of the coming ' friendly ' meeting. 

The ctirious fact, however, to which I should like 
to allude, is that now — since we have ' the key of 
Constantinople in our pocket' — we are all at once 
described as so weak that we dare not defend 
even the humble half-measure called * The Ste- 
fano Treaty' gainst one Power. Bussia, yet un- 
successful, was a terror to Europe. Russia, vic- 
torious, turns out to be a nonentity to be sneered 
at ! This, indeed, is a startling transformation. The 
' Colossus ' turns out to be a wretched weakling, 
trembling at the sight of a drawn sword ! 

It did not need the jingling of Six MiUions Vote of 
Confidence, ' warranted not to be spent,' to convince 
us that England was rich. In fact, we thought 
she was so rich that she woidd not have needed 
to have gone a borrowing to rtuse so small a sum. 
1 Anyone can borrow, even poor, dear Austria ! 

On the Eve of the Congress. 91 

The other waxlike demonstrations that followed 
frighten, perhaps, some old English ladies, but here 
they raise only a good-natured smile. The handful of 
your Eeserves — about one army corps — give us a very 
pacific view of your warlike threats. Surely you do 
not think that 40,000 of reserves can terrify a mili- 
tary empire that counts its soldiers not by tens, but by 
hundreds of thousands ? We have at this present 
moment more Turkish prisoners of war in Eussia than 
all your reserves. 

But what amuses us and fills me with doubts 
whether the England which I know and love so well 
has not disappeared altogether, is the delusion that 
Bussians are to be frightened into compliance with 
Lord Beaconsfield's dictates by the sudden apparition 
of your Indian soldiers. Chinese rather like sham 
demoiistrations of this sort, and employ pasteboard 
dragons, and shields painted vdth horrible demons, 
to frighten European soldiers. Why should Lord 
Beaconsueld imitate the Chinese ? 

England — and we Bussians know it very well — 
is the greatest naval Power in the world. But it is 
not given to one nation to be supreme in both 
elements. To attempt it, is to provoke failure. You 
can bring, not one, but several handfuls of Orientals 
to threaten us, but you'll obtain the very opposite 
result to that which you desire. You should always 
keep in mind that Bussians are not cut off from 
all access to official information published by your 
Indian Office, and we also understand why certain 
measures are taken when Parliament is prorogued. 

92 The Sussian People and the War. 

Why should we be afraid of your Indian soldiers? 
Turkey had more soldiers to oppose to our armies 
than England can put in the field, but that did not 
save her from defeat. Your Premier forgets that, 
although Russia has made but small annexations in 
Asia compared with England, yet we govern enough 
territory there to understand the conditions of Em- 
pire in the East. Asiatic dominion impairs, instead 
of increasing, the power of intervention in Europe.' 
You send 6,000 Sepoya to Malta. Well and good. 
But, in order to be able to get these 6,000 Asiatics, 
you have to maintain nearly 60,000 English troops 
in India. 

Since the Crimean War India has become a 
greater drain than ever upon your resources in men. 
Have you not had to keep 15,000 more EngUsh 
soldiers in India since the Mutiny than when you 
fought us at Sebastopol? And these 15,000 English- 
men, were they not worth many 6,000 sepoys? 

Your Indian Viceroy, I see, has been taking 
measures of precaution in India, which somehow 
strangely conflict with the impression that India 
is glowing with enthusiastic fervour to send her sons 
to fight the battles of England. The taxes are being 
increased, the armies of your tributary princes are 
complained of as too large, and the native press is to 
be put under the censure. 

Lord Napier's celebrated Minute on your Indian 
Army is too categorical in its exposition of the mili- 
tary dangers of the English position in India to be 

' Ar^banisUn, to wit. 

On the Eve of the Congress. 93 

effaced by bringing 6,000 sepoys to Malta. Accord- 
ing to the Indian Commander-in-Chief, the natives of 
India do not seem particularly devoted to their Em- 
press. Were not the sepoys the greatest danger to 
EngUsh rule during the Mutiny? 

But why should these unworthy demonstrations 
be continued? Surely no serious Englishman can 
believe that Eussia will yield to England that which 
she believes to be unjust, because Lord Beaconsfield 
has added to the forces of the Empress 40,000 
reserves and 6,000 sepoys ? We knew before these 
' spirited demonstrations ' that England was rich, and 
we also knew the precise limits of your military 

Why do you forget our history ? Napoleon took 
Moscow, but he did not conquer Russia ; nor did 
England, with all her aUies, succeed in doing more 
than capture Sebastopol. Vulgar insults and ridicu- 
lous threats do a great deal of harm — but not in 
the sense some people imagine. 

I say * England,' not Lord Beaconsfield, for it 
seems as if Englishmen, bold enough to be guided 
by some other consideration than a fear of embar- 
rassing the Cabinet, form a very weak minority 
for the present, and our diplomatists are right in 
having only your Cabinet in view when they write 
and speak about England. But a party may be weak 
in a certain sense, and nevertheless worthy of the 
admiration of all who can yet admire that which 
stands on a high moral level. Mr. Bright and his few 
friends did not succeed in preventing the Crimean 


The Ruman People and the War. 

War. Mr. Gladatone, Lord Derby, Lord Camarvon, 
Hr. Chamberbun, Mi. Fawcett, Mr. Courtney, and 
aome few others will not prevent its repetiticm if 
Lord Beaconsfield insista upon hia own objects ; but 
the following generations will not foi^et their pro- 
tests, even if at present they should be made in 




English papers are still filled with accounts of Lord 
Beaconsfield's triumphs ; his reception at the Guild- 
hall on the same night that a majority of 143 in the 
House of Commons accorded him full ParUamentary 
approval for aU his doings. It is aU very charming 
for Lord Beaconsfield, no doubt ; but was it not a Uttle 
cruel to bring him in the last scene of the comedy to 
Guildhall ? Is it not associated in history with his 
terrible threat, * to fight three campaigns in defence 
of the integrity and independence of the Ottoman 
Empire?' Were there no echoes of his former 
speeches lingering about the gorgeous roof to mock 
the speaker whose voice has been so often uplifted 
there in defence of a policy which is violated by almost 
every clause of the Treaty which he waS applauded for 
signing ? Pardon my frankness if I say that the Eng- 
lish seem, indeed, to have short memories, and are 
capable of rapid conversions ; but it puzzles me to 
explain the triumph accorded to Lord Beaconsfield by 
men who, some months ago, were abusing Mr. Glad- 

^ The following letter was written on Aagost 25, 1878, after the 
' triumphant ' return of the British Plenipotentiariee from Berlin. 

96 The Rusaian People and the War. 

stooe for recommending far less sweeping changes 
than those which Lord Beaconsfield has aaoctioned. 
Are they only making believe now, or were they 
making believe then ? 

Lord Beaconsfield, according to some of his adhe- 
rents, seems to be in&llible. Now such,! need hardly 
say, is not the view in Russia. We have his utterance 
ex cathedrd to prove that Turkey is strengthened by 
losing half her tonitory. If any one else had ventured 
to aigue in that way last year who would have 
listened to him ? But then, of course, every one has 
not the gift of making people believe that black is 
white merely by saying so. Henceforth it strikes me 
that we have now two Fopes. I thought one was 
already more than enough ; yet it seems Uiat the Pope 
at Downing Street makes quite as exhaustive demands 
upon the futh of the FaithAil as the Holy Father at 
the YaUcan. 

If we had entered upon the war simply to anni- 
hUate Lord Beaconsfield's policy, the Berlin Treaty 
would be a great and complete success. But, in 
drawing the sword, we did not even think of Lord 
Beaconsfield, except as a possible foe. Our object was 
a nobler and a higher one ; and, therefore, although 
Lord Beaconsfield at Berlin gave up entirely his for- 
mer policy and became one of the partitioners of the 
Ottoman Empire, he nevertheless, according to our 
views, did a great mischief, which rankles in the heart 
of every true Russian. There is hardly a demand 
that our diplomats have made for Russia that your 
Premier has not granted kindly enough. But the 

After the Congress. 97 

proposals which extended the area of freedom and 
emancipated the Slavs — these he has curtailed with 
the willing assent of interested and designing in- 
triguers, who see in the dissatisfaction of those be- 
trayed peoples the effectual instruments for achieving 
in the future then- aggressive designs.^ 

England has conspired Avith Austria to deprive the 
Slavs of the liberty which we promised them, and to 
betray them into the hands of those from whom our 
brothers died to free them for ever. 

Had Bulgaria been entirely free, Russia would have 
had no reason for interfering again. The weaker 
Bulgaria is, the more she depends upon us, and the 
more absolutely she is in our power.^ 

It is a terrible game ! It involves the betrayal of 
a sacred trust, of a solemn pledge. But the reckless 
enthusiasm, the sympathies of the Russian people, 
have not been extinguished at BerUn. We keenly 
feel the shame of having surrendered the interests of 
those who had no other protector. England, through 
her representatives, was their persecutor, and we un- 
fortunately played at Berlin a part condemned for 

' ' We baulked and defeated Ruasia in what she sought on behalf of 
oppiessed and suflbring humanity ; in what concerned our own pride 
and power we suffered, not only suffered, but effectually helped her to 
get her way.'— Mr. Gladstone, * The Friends and Foes of Russia,' Sine- 
teenth Century, January 1870, p. 170. 

' On this point the Earl of Derby's words are very clear. 'A large 
Bulgaria reaching to the sea would be necessarily much more indepen- 
dent of Russian influence. It would contain a mixed population not 
ezdusiyely Slav, and by mere contact with the sea would be more open 
to your influence. But the small State is also entirely inaccessible to you, 
and the influence exercised over it wiU be exclusiTely Russian, and if 
you want to put pressure on the people there is not a point where you 
can do it' Speech in House of Lords on Berlin Treaty, July 18, 1878. 


98 The Russian People and the War. 

nearly two thousand years — that of a ' practical ' 

The indignation throughout the whole of Russia 
on hearing of the first exaggerated reports of the 
abandonment of the cause of the Southern Slavs at the 
Congress was very intense. This feeUng found wliat 
now appears perhaps even too vehement an expression 
in the speech of Mr. Aksakoff, although at that time, I 
must admit, he only expressed ihe universal opinion 

at Mo.scpwJ Addressjjig' the Moscow Slavonic Com- 
mittee on July 4, 1^8,-h^^d-: — 

Gentlemen, — A funeral oration inaugurated our two last 
meetings. Four months ago we attended the funeral of a 
man, illustrious by his inteUigence, who freely gave his life 
to serve a sacred cause — the liberation of the oppressed 
Slavs. We were then deploring the premature death of the 
civil administrator of Bulgaria— Prince Tcherkassky, whose 
fame will ever be remembered in connection with one of the 
most notable deeds in the history of modem Christianity. 
At that time, in truth, the whole of Bulgaria had begun to 
enjoy a new hfe, and there remained not one single enslaved 
Christian in the Avide expanse of territory on which was 
dispersed the Bulgarian people, from the Danube to the 
Maritza. We now meet once more, and are we not again 
met together to attend a funeral — not, indeed, of one raan, 
but of many, many thousands, the populations, not of towns 
merely, but of whole countries — io attend the burial, as it 
were, of all hopes of liberating Bulgarians and of securing 
the independence of the Servians ? * Are we not now biuying 
the cause which all the Russians have at heart — thet legacies, 
the traditions of our ancestors, our own aspirations, the 

^ In 80 far as Servia was concerDed these exaggerated rumours were 
fortunately as false as Mr. AksakofT declared them to be ; the indepen- 
dence of Serbia, secured at San Stefano, was not anDuUed^but ratified by 
the Congress. 

After the Congress. 99 

national renown, the honour, the conscience of the Russian 
people ? No ! no ! I repeat the word No ! Were all the 
victories and sacrifices of the war, the untold burdens 
cheerfully borne by the mass of the Russian people, no 
more than a fable, a legend, the outpouring of an over- 
heated brain ? Wlio knows ? But if all this has actually 
taken place, can it be true, that there is any truth in the 
reports which reach us on every side of shamefid concessions 
at the Congress — tidings placed before the Russian nation 
(and never contradicted by the Russian Government) causing 
it now to redden with shame, now exciting the pangs of 
conscience, and then overwhelming her with a heavy load 
of uncertainty? And what revelations are here madr 
public ? Ijies ! Even if letters and telegrams should ex- 
hibit Russia in such a monstrous light, that very mou- 
nt rousness would be the best voucher that this is not truth, 
but falsehood. Not that we doubt the truth of what re- 
fers to the plotting between Great Britain and Austria, 
and the pretensions put forward by these Powers, hectored \ 
by the German Chancellor. In no wise. The injustice, the 
insolence of the West towards Russia, and in general to- 
wanls Eastern Europe, has no limit, and is now, as always, 
immeasurable. This axiom in our history, together with 
all historical warnings, are forgotten by Russian diplomat- 
ists and by those who pull the strings at St. Petersburg. 
Only too probable, nhis I ap)x>;irs to us what is told of the 
conduct of our representatives at the Congi'ess when we 
remembtT Mhe ser\ ices' for which Russia had to thank her 
national diplomacy during tin.' hist two years. But by what- 
ever * generous concessions* our diplomatists may have grati- 
fied the enemies of Russia at the cost of our national honour, 
can it hi* tliat Russia, in the person of her august and 
revered representative, has pronounced the last word ? Nay, 
we will not believe this generoftity, which renders useless 
that shedding of torrents of Russian blood and makes light 
of the nati<mal honour, can possibly meet with the approval 
of our supreme ruler. We refuse to Wieve it, and shaM 

n •-» 

10(1 The liuxvian People and the War. 

persist in refosing to do so till it appears uoder the authori- 
sation of an official anaoimcement on the part of the Go- 
vernment. To do so sooner would be no less a crime than 
that of abusing the dignity of the ruling power which sways 
the destinies of this great nation ! And in truth, is it 
possible that such a mountain of absurdities, that heart- 
rending folly which characterises the decisions of the Con- 
gress, that long list of insults levelled against Russia, could 
ever become s/ait aasompU ? Judge for yourselves. 'What 
caused this war to break out ? What prompted Kussia to 
engage in it ? A geoeral massacre of populationa which 
inhabit Southern Bulgaria. What problem, then, was this 
war intended to solve ? To deliver the Bulgarian peoples 
from the Turkish yoke. Never was such an universal in- 
terest, an interest bo keenly excited by any war. Never did 
any war originate such sacrifices prompted by sublime charity, 
and deserve in the full meaning conveyed by these words the 
name of a national war. 

By the Treaty of San Stefano, to which was appended the 
signature of the Emperor of Russia and that of the Sultan 
himself, the whole of Bulgaria, on this side and on the 
farther side of the Balkans, was raised to the rank of a 
Principality ; and arrangements were made to summon a 
national assembly. At length, long-afflicted land, for a 
moment you believed yourself free ; a bright future which 
seemed to be dawning fiHed you with exultation ; resuscitated, 
you now breathed finely, when lo, as would now appear, with 
the sanction of that self-same generous liberator of Russia, 
Bulgaria is sawn asunder alive, and the best, the richect 
portion of her territory, that beyond the Balkans, finds itself 
anew under the Turkish yoke ! And the Russian hosts, 
those very armies which shed their life-blood to secure the 
independence of Southern Bulgaria, have assigned to them 
the duty of rivetting upon them once more the chains of the 
vanquished monster, to surrender in person to Turkish 
brutality the Christian women and children who hailed 
the Russians as friends and deliverers ! In St. Petersburg, 

After the Concjvess. 101 

according to the papers, there are those who dare to insult 
our Bulgarian brethren for distrusting Bussian promises; 
but let us ask whether, after so shamefully breaking our 
word, are we worthy of the confidence and of the affection of 
this people ? Alas ! poor Bussian soldiers ! Yoi^ will shrink 
now from looking in the face your * younger birqjthers.' And 
how is it that you, too, thanks to the Russiaai diploi^a^y^* 
have now fastened upon you the odious * stigma ^Ueb 
attaches to the word * traitor ' ? What, J;hen, has Ilr^pened ? 
Is it that we have met with some terHble disaster/ worse 
than what occurred on the fatal. day of Sedan — for this even 
did not move France to make peace or deter her fromvcon*- 
tinning a struggle which lasted five months U>nger t-t.^SUp 
disaster has occurred, no bp^ttle, no defeat. 3eacon^eld 
stamped his foot, Austria iield up a tlireatening fioggr^ 
Kussian diplomats were. terrified, and ^jil wa& su^enc^r^c^ 
What makes this the more difficult to believe is, that BuQSgfS 
however others may deceive themselves t^ut the lot of 41^ 
inhabitants of Southern Bulgaria, knows full well that the 
hope of reform, grounded on the appointment of a Christian 
governor and divers improvements is illusory.' History 
furnishes the Bussian Government with too many proofs to 

^ Alas ! so far as the larger portion of Southern Bulgaria was con- 
cerned, the Congress did not even provide for the appointment of a 
Christian Gk>vemor, but redelivered to the direct authority of the PortOi 
without taking any guarantee for reform, one third of the Bulgarian land 
which Russia had freed. I cannot understand how it is that Engliahmen 
— even liberal Englishmen — should so strangely ignore the fact that 
' Eastern Konmelia/ so far from being oo-€JXteMve with Southern Bol- 
garia, does not include one half the Bulgarian lands south of the Balkan. 
In 1870, Mr. Gladstone wrote:— < If it be allowable that the Executive 
power of Turkey should renew at this great crisis, by permission or 
authority of Europe, the charter of its existence in Bulgaria, then there 
if* not on record, since the beginning of political economy, a protest that 
man has lodged against intolerable misgoyemment, or a stroke he has 
dealt at loathsome tyranny, that ought not henceforward to be branded 
n? a crime.' In 1878, the Turkish charter of absolute authority in South 
Western Bulgaria, annulled by Russia at San Stefano, wns deliberately 
restored by EuMpe at Berlin, but against this outrage has even Mr. 
Gladstone so much as uttered a single protest ? 

102 The Russian People and tlie War. 

the contrary ; and, at the Conference at Constantinople, did 
it not moreover forcibly demonstrate the insufficiency of such 
goarantees ? England did not permit the discussion of such 
reforms in the wide sense of administrative autonomy, and 
authorised it solely with a view of facilitating with some 
show of decency the withdrawal by Russia of her claims. 
Not only was it in opposition to British interests to relieve 
the Southern Bulgarians, but she used every effort to efface 
from Southern Bulgaria every vestige of nationality, and 
even the name itself. If, after the not very dignified with- 
drawal of the Imperial Commissary of Philippopolis to 
Timova ; if, after the retrogade movement of the Russian 
armies across the Balkans, Turkish barbarities should re- 
commence ; if blood be shed anew ; if once more Turkish 
outrages on Christian women recommence, and we hear again 
of such things, Russia, her blood boiling with indignation 
and smarting with many wounds — would she not rise to 
a man and fall on the Turk, sending off to her diplomatists 
a good budget of maledictions? Fall on them! But in 
what way? Is it not to guard against such generous 
Russian fervour that all Beaconsfield's measures of precau- 
tion have been taken, and taken, it would seem, in concert 
with Russian diplomatists ? The English Minister, with all 
the candour of one who knows the forces he has at his back, 
has he not said openly that his object is to protect Turkey 
against victorious Russia, be the Christians martyred as they 
may ? — in a word, that the Congress is nothing more nor less 
than an undisguised conspiracy against the Russian people ? 
A conspiracy plotted with the concurrence g^en of the 
Russian representatives themselves. Experience having 
shown that the Balkans, \'iewed hitherto as an insur- 
mountable natural obstacle, could not prevent the advance 
of our armies, the Congress has issued orders for the 
construction of a line of forts (of course with the aid of 
English engineers and English money) along the whole 
extent of the Biilkan range, which, manned by Turkish 
garrisons, will render the Balkans virtually impregnable. 

Aftei' the Congress, 103 

Was»it for this, then, that our brave troops toiled so inde- 
fatigably, and died so heroically, in escalading the Balkans 
in the height of winter ? Without a deep blush of shame, 
without heartfelt grief, can the Russian henceforth pronounce 
the words Shipka, Carlova, Bajazid, and all those names of 
places rendered illustrious by the valour, thickly stre>vn with 
the graves of our heroes, given over now to be dishonoured 
by the Turk ? Our soldiers, on their retiun home, vnll not 
thank those diplomatists who wrested from the Congress the 
fruits of this campaign. And some would have us believe 
that all this has received the sanction of our supreme ruler. 
Never ! Our diplomacy seeks to console itself by the thought 
that the Congress has permitted the Danubian portion of 
Bulgaria to be elevated to the rank of a Principality. Oh, 
touching simplicity! Have we reason to believe that 
England and Austria will take no measures necessary to 
secure their interests here — measures which will effectually 
paralyse all the importance of the Principality, and bring it 
under their influence in all matters political and economic ? 
Details are relegated to special commissions in the Embassies 
at Constantinople, and in these details England and Austria 
will entangle the Bulgaro-Danubian Principality, and will 
enclose her in an iron band, out of which she will find 
no further means of escape I Words fail when we correctly 
characterise this betrayal, this perfidy, done in the face 
of historical tradition and of the duty and sacred mission 
assigned to llussia. To abide by all this is no more or 
less than to formally abdicate one's post as the chief re- 
presentative of all the Slav races and of all the orthodox 
Eiist ; it means to lose, not merely our influence and to 
sacrifice our interests, but to forfeit the esteem of these 
races, our natural allies — the only allies we really have in 
Europe. The liberty, the intellectual development, the 
moral progress of the Slavonic nationality can only be at- 
tained by imion and an entente cordiale with the Russian 

people Russian diplomacy thinks otherwise ! 

And was it then for this that the Russian nation, the only 

104 The Rtissian People and the War. 

powerful and independent portion of the Slavonic race, has 
shed its precious blood, offered as a holocaust hundreds of 
thousands of her sons, has reduced herself temporarily 
almost to beggary, and in very deed won the thorny 
crown of martyrdom, only to make her \'ictorie8 them- 
selves (he means of securing her humiliation and depriving 
her of her proud position among Slavonic peoples, of en- 
larging the possessions and increasing the power of their 
enemies, and of submitting the orthodox Slavs to the 
authority of German and Catholic adverse elements ? 
Martyr in a vain cause, despised conqueror, admire the 
work of thy hands ! 

When, during the Constantinople Conference, we dis- 
cussed — our cheeks burning — the buffets received there, 
what shall we say now of these solemn insults of daily recur- 
rence ? And the Kussian diplomatists, if the journals are to 
be credited, after each blow content themselves with attest- 
ing the same, and for Bussia only ask in return a voucher of 
disinterested motives. Yes, very disinterested indeed, and 
the voucher is forthcoming. Words fail one, the mind is 
chilled and bewildered by the extravagant conduct on the 
part of the Russian diplomatists by this terrible display of 
serv'ile folly. The bitterest enemy of Russia and of her 
Government could not conceive of anything more prejudicial 
to her peace. See, then, our true Nihilists, for whom exists 
neither Russia nor Russian nationality, nor orthodoxy nor 
traditions, beings who resemble our Bogoluboffs, Sasulitch 
and Company, deprived like these of all sympathy with 
history, of all sentiments of ardent national enthusiasm. 
Judge for yourselves who then among these, whether the 
mere anarchists or the Government Nihilists, not less 
lacking faith and patriotism, who, in point of fact, are those 
Russia has most cause to fear, who are those most prejudicial 
to her moral development and her civic dignity? Is it 
possible that Turkey, which threatened, by audaciously re- 
sisting its authority, to make a dead letter of the Congress, 
should be called upon to play the part of guardian angel of 

After the Congress. 105 

Bussian honour ? No ; be the doings of the Congress what 
they may, however our national honour may be insulted, 
her crowned guardian, he lives, he is strong, he is also her 
natiu*al avenger ! If the mere reading of the papers makes 
our blood boil in our veins, what, then, must experience the 
Sovereign of Bussia, who bears the weight of the responsi- 
bility which history will lay gn his shoulders ? Did not he 
himself give the appellation of a ' holy undertaking ' to the 
war in question? Is it not he who, on his return from 
the Danube, proclaimed triumphantly to deputations from 
Moscow and other Bussian towns * that the holy undertaking 
should be completed ? ' Terrible are the horrors of war, and 
the heart of our Sovereign cannot lightly call on his subjects 
for a renewal of deaths, and a fresh shedding of blood — on 
his subjects ready for all sacrifices. And yet it is not by 
concessions which are detrimental to the national honour 
and conscience that one can counteract disasters. Bussia 
wishes not for war, but less still would she desire a peace 
which dishonours her.^ Question the first you meet in any 
way you please : would he not prefer to fight till blood could 
flow no more and strength oflFer no further resistance if thus 
the Bussian name could be rescued from opprobrium, and 
the part of a traitor should not be played in the presence of 
his brethren in Christ ? There is no disgrace in sometimes 
yielding to superior forces of united enemies after long- 
contested and heroic battles, as we ourselves yielded in 1856, 
without detriment to our glory, as recently yielded France. 
But to give way preventively, without a battle, without 
firing a shot : this is not a concession, it is a desertion. But 
who, then, in Europe would have quite decided on war? 
Not England, indeed, who has only her Indian monsters on 
land, for even in a naval warfare she would suffer more than 
we should. Not Austria, indeed, whose whole body is no 
more than a heel of Achilles, who, as well she may, fears 
more than anything else a war with Bussia, for the raising 
of the Austrian question depends on the will of Bussia alone ! 
. . . Invincible, invulnerable is the Bussian Czar, from the 

106 The Russian People and the War. 

moment when, with a tirm belief in the miSBion of his 
people, putting aside thoughts about the interests of AVestem 
Kurope — interests hostile to oar own — he will lift, up, aa say 
our ancient chronicle;), 'with dignity, eeverity, und honour,' 
the standard of Russia, which is also the standard of the 
Slavs and of all I'^stem Christians. The nation is agitated, 
irritated, troubled each day by the proceedings of the 
Congress at Berlin, and awaits, as manna from on high, the 
final decision of its ruler. It waits and hopes. Her hope 
will not prove vain, for the words of the Tzar will be ful- 
filled; 'The holy undertaking shall be accomplished.' The 
iluty of faithful subjects is to hope and believe, but the i^nic 
duty forbids us to keep silence. In these days of turpitude 
and iniquity, which raise up a wall of separation between 
Tzar and country, between the wishes of the Sovereign and 
those of his people, is it possible that an answer should ever 
reach us from high quarters in these authoritative words — 
' Silence, honest tongues '. let us now listen to no words but 
those which jrive utterance to flattery und Ij-ing!' , , , __^ 

ich jrive utterance to flattery und h'ing!' , 

*t.? KO't< A^f.'.*:*^',.^ £it£iiI^fc,M,>*-«,--- 
iiicli were (lie {^lowing aiiu fervent worus of tfie Tt,., 

fearless Aksakofl"; wliicli, I roiwat, fuithfiiUy expressed 
the feelings of us all in Museow, at the time when we 
^vere daily receiving the exaggerated reports of the 
extent to which the Treaty of San l?tefano was s[K»ilcd 
in Congress.' 

Hut while we did not siifler, he, althougli but tlie 
exponent of our opinions, was less fortunate. He was 
oxilctl, not, I am hapjiy to say, so fiU" away as to 
SiWriii, as was reported in the English |>ress, Imt 
iievertlioless to a [ilare oven more inaccessible. He 

' Rii^ans nn' uut alone in b(;Ue\'iug tfiitt tlie JV-rliii Ciin;rrefle did 
rolling but niisrhier. The Duke of Arjrrll 8«y«— 'The CongroM, and 
Ibu Eng-liith Pleoipoleiitiiiriet wpeciallv, did niiUiiDg but sutction what 
Ihey could nut prevent, aud to Umit to tbe utmost Uioae libertiea whicli 
Irom Terj Hhftme tbev could not tdtofrether ■niw^.' — Eattern Qtirtliim, 
Yol. ii. p. Ltr.. 

After the Congress, 107 

was ordered to leave Moscow and go to his country 
residence, a place which the President of the Slavonic 
Committee did not possess. I need hardly add, that 
his friends did not lose time in supplying the de- 
ficiency, and he spent a couple of months at a coun- 
try place four or five hours distant from Moscow. 
Mr. Aksakoff returned to find that his place in the 
bank, in which he was one of the chief directors, had 
never been filled up, and was open for him at once. 
His colleagues had shared between themselves his 
work, but his salary remained untouched. Mr. Ak- 
sakoff thanked them for the money, and immediately 
used it for the maintenance of the Slav orphans. 

Shortly after Mr. Aksakoff's departure from Mos- 
cow, we were agreeably surprised by the appearance, 
in the official Government's Messenger^ of a very re- 
markable declaration of Eussia's attitude in relation 
to the Treaty of Berlin, which expressed, of course hi 
very calm and dignified moderation, the same dissatis- 
faction with the Berlin ' settlement ' which prevailed 
generally throughout Bussia. The significance of this 
declaration was somewhat strangely overlooked in 
many circles. The following is an extract from the 
concluding passages of the article : — 

As for Russia, she recovers possession in Europe of a 
territory temporarily severed from her rule after the Crimean 
war, and which again places her in contact with the Danube. 
In Asia she acquires territories, strategic positions, and a 
port which will serve her as elements of security and pros • 
perity. Assuredly these results are far from realising what 
Russia had a right to expect after the sacrifices of a victorious 
war. They are far even from answering to the interests of 

108 The Russian People and the War. 

the East and of Europe, which would have been the gainers 
from seeing a more aynijAete and inore regtUar aolwtioti 
issue from this crisis. The work has many weak points. 
One of those most to be regretted is the arbitrary settlemeut 
of boundaries by geographical and political considerations 
without regard to nationalities. The Imperial Cabinet had 
proposed a more rational and equitable pLin, which would 
have left all the Eastern races free to develope themselves 
each in ita natural limits. This it was wUh regret obliged 
to abandon. But everything depends on the way in which 
the decisions of the Congress will be carried out. It cannot 
be too often repeated that the difficulties of the Eastern 
Question lie, not in Turkey, but in Europe. l^Tiatever the 
complications it presents, they cannot be in excess of the 
forces at the disposal of the civilised Powers. If they unite 
in the common idea of strengthening the germs created by 
the Treaty of Berlin, in order to make them the starting- 
point of a prosperous development of the peoples of the 
East, the work of the Congress may be fertile both for the 
East and Europe. The Imperial Cabinet pushed conciliation 
to the furthest limits in order to effect that concert of will 
which is the pledge of general peace and of the welfare of 
the Christian East. Henceforth its task is to see that so 
many efforts do not remain unfruitful. Such, moreover, 
has been the issue of all our Eastern wars. Despite all our 
successes, we have not been able to complete our task. We 
have always had to pull up before the inextricable diffi- 
culties of this problem and before the solid mass of interests 
and passions it excites. But each of our wars has been an 
additional step towards the final goal, and thus has been 
traced the sanguinary but glorious furrow which our tradi- 
tions have left in history, and which must lead up to the 
accomplishment of our national mission — the deliverance of 
the Christian East. However incomplete it may tw, the 
work of the Berlin Congress marks a fresh step in that path 
— an important though painfully secured step. It only 
remains to consolidate and develope it. This will be the 

After the Comjress, 109 

task of the future. The Treaty of 1856, that monument of 
political passions which had led to an unjust war and an vj 
unjust peace, that document which forced on Russia a posi- 
tion which a great nation could not tolerate, which for 
twenty-two years had tied her hands and Europe's, secured 
impunity to the Turkish Government, and produced per- 
manent disorders, the causes of the late war — the Treaty of 
1856, violated by everybody, renounced even by its authors, 
no longer exists. The victorious arms of Russia have torn it 
up. The Berlin Congress has expunged it from history. 
Russia has secured the right of watching over its work, and 
she will not let it be reduced to a nullity. The Ottoman 
Empire has contracted a new lease with Christian and 
civilised Europe. If it frankly enters on the path open to 
it by scrupulously carrying out the clauses which guarantee 
the autonomy of its Christian populations, a prosperous 
existence may be insured to it. Russia, who in her vast 
territory numbers millions of Mussulman subjects, and who 
protects their religion and security, so far from menacing it, 
may become its best ally. In the opposite case, it will have 
signed its own condemnation. If the laborious childbirth of 
the Eastern world is no longer but a question of time, is not 
yet terminated ; if regrettable restrictions produced by dis- 
trust, prejudices, political rivalries, and the selfish calcula- 
tions of material interests and party struggles still hamper 
it; if much remains to be done to finish it, much has never- 
theless been done. Russia has the consciousness of having 
powerfully contributed to it by her generous and resolute 
initiative, as well as by her moderation. She has the con- 
viction of being placed in the current of the great laws which 
govern history, and that, despite the momentary obstacles 
offered by the passions, littlenesses, and weaknesses of men, 
humanity nevertheless pursues its invariable march towards 
the goal appointed by Providence. The Berlin Congress has 
been a stage in this laborious path. Looking at it from this 
standpoint, Russia can draw from the past her confidence in 
the future. 

110 The Russian PeopU and the War. 

Tbe subsequent policy of the Bussiaii Government 
showed that this declaration was not merely a series 
of empty words, but proved that though Russia, for 
the sake of European peace, had made concessions at 
Berhn, she remained faithful to the Slavonic cause 
in the Balkan. If tbe Turkish garrisons are at this 
moment absent firom 'Eastern Roumelia,' the Bul- 
garians of that province know perfectly well to what 
Power they owe tbe practical abandonment of that 
mischievous clause which England contributctl to tlie 
Treaty of Berlin.' 

■ Tbe importaDM of thia pnctiol modlficttion of the Berlin Trenty 
wu foicibly etated li^ Sr AV. Ilkrcourt when he eddressed hie con- 
stitaents in Juumj 1880. He lud r ' I told you lut jeer that if thete 
WW eny attempt to carry into effect the proviMoos of the Treaty of 
Berlin as to Eaatem Roumelia there would be re«utance and war. Her 
Majesty '» noTernment and the Porte came later to the same conclusion ; 
■ml when the time arrived for placing- Eastern Roumelia under the direct 
luilitar}' aiid political authority of the Sultan, according to the Treaty 
of llerliu, the attempt was judiciously nliandoned. Eastern Roumcliti 
t'xietM in name at a Tiirkitb province, but the authority of tbe Turk ia 
fStiiiKuinUvd witbin it* borders. When Eastern Roumelia, ast it 
ha» practicatly paMi^, out of the hands of the Sultan, the whole fabric 
of the OoTiTument plan of the Treaty of Berlin crumbled to pieces. 
The line wf the llalkanji, which wna to be the bulwark of eonsoUdateil 
'I'urkov, WM lijat, and all the bombast of the triumphal reliim from 
IWUu way W thrown into tbe waste-paper basket You will rae, then, 
ikat the 'I'reaty of llerliu, »i> Cw from realising to any extent the in- 
tvnliiuu awl •iesiie uf it^ aulhuN in rentoring and repairing the Turkish 
KiuiuKp, bw only advanced its dMtnwtion.' 




* Another insurrection in Turkey! Rising of the 
Bulgarians ! ' As I read these words I am filled with 
conflicting emotions. As a Russian, I blush. I fore- 
see with dread the new torrents of blood, the new 
victims of a struggle for that Uberty — which we pro- 
mised to acliieve for them. To me it is but a poor 
consolation to say that other coim tries are to blame 
for what Russia had to leave undone. When nume- 
rous lionest voices were heard in Moscow deploring 
tlie shameful results of tlie Berlin Congress, they 
were accused of ridiculous self-devotion, of * longing 
for martyrdom ; ' and they were told * that after all 
Bulgaria liad gained much, cliiefly thanks to tlie 

Well, we now see the terrible results of our Berlin 
endeavours to conciliate our enemies. Had our dip- 
lomacy had more confidence in the readiness of 
Russians to make new sacrifices and in the support of 

' This letter was written in October^ 1878, on leceiving the news oi 
the first risingy after the Berlin Treaty, in South-Westem Bulgaria, a 
struggle, which although hitherto unsuccessful, will never he abandoned 
until the whole of Bulgaria it united and free from the Danube to the 

112 The liwosian People and tfte War. 

the better part of England — had EngUsh Slavophiles 
been more courageous in their sympathies for a grand 
cause, which they unanimously supported only at the 
St. James's Conference — things would have taken 
another turn, and at this moment there might have 
actually been ' Peace with honour.' 

It happened to me this summer to discuss this very 
question with a foreign statesman. He ' chaifed ' me, 
to use an English colloquialism, upon the briUiant 
results of the Congress. Without giving way to my 
feelings, I honestly confessed that I should prefer 
losing Batoum, Kars, Bessarabia, everytliing, to giving 
up one inch of the Slav territory for the benefit of 
Turkish Pashas. ' You know Russian people very 
little indeed,' said I, ' if you tliink that we are pleased 
with the soK^alled Biissian acquisitions. We want to 
stand high morally, to see our every word backed by 
deeds. As to the cost, as to poverty — dear me I what 
wretched considerations those are.' 'Oh,' said he 
eagerly, ' we would have willingly allowed Russia to 
have taken much more ; but we all made a point of 
opposing the actual independence of Bulgaria.' It 
struck me tliat a sham independence — like everything 
that is sham — could be of no value. 

We now see the results of our conciliatory eflbrts, 
of Russia's yielding, of England's triumphs. A new 
struggle is beginning in the East. Bulgaria, after 
all — poor, wretched, unsupported as she is — objects 
to be ' sawn asunder alive.' ' Like a great high 
priest of sacrifice,' say the Bulgarians in Pliilippo- 
polis in their address to Her Majesty the Queen of 




Divided Bulgana. 113 

England, ^ Lord Beaconsfield has sacrificed Bulgaria 
at Berlin on the altar of the golden calf of Great 

I know that there are Englishmen who feel deeply 
the harm done in the name of their country, and who 
(lush even more than I do at the sacrifice of the Slavs» 
\\xt it was not as a lone unit of the Semitic race that 
the Premier appeared at Berlin. He acted in the 
name of England, and England did not protest. Eng- 
land seemed generally to be silenced — to be paralysed ; 
and the whole English nation apparently abdicated 
precisely when its support was most needful. Sud- 
Ly i/bec^ne • unp«riotic ■ to ,y.p.thi« with the 
oppressed ; it was declared * to be playing Bussia's 
game ' to support those whom she, unfortunately, was 
abandoning I Oh ! you do not know how keenly we 
— those who had only one soul and one word — sufiered 
in observing your silence and your paralysis ! We — 
the ridiculed Muscovites — were sneered at when we 
still spoke of England's love for liberty, love for justice, 
love for high aims and beliefs ! Yes ; you were not 
our friends * in need.' You became frozen and wise ! ^ 

> This conviction is also shared by many Liberals. Mr. Leonard 
Ck>iirtneyy M.P., speaking to his constituents at the close of 1878, said : — 
' We of the Liberal Party have not been true to our duty — have not been 
true to our principles. In critical moments we have fallen away. Listead 
of giving voice, trumpet-tongued, to what we believi d and to what we 
held to be the truth, we have been silent.' I rejoice to be able to quote 
further the following generous outburst of indignation from the same 
speaker : — ' Though Russia were ten times our enemy, I cannot think of 
those poor Russian peasants sent to their graves, I cannot think of their 
women folk loaded with affliction, I cannot think of a great nation ar- 
rested in its progress of civilisation, for the petty vanity of the Earl of 
Beaconsfield, without being filled with indignation sgainst the man who 
has brought these evils about, and who has degraded the national spirit 


114 The Russian People and the War. 

Well, admire now the new rismg of the Boumellans, 
and console yourselves by accusing some non-existent 
secret Russian societies of having done all the mis- 
chief. As to us, we seek for no consolation of that 
kind. We were blind in supposing it could be other- 

The famous Berhn Congress divided Bulgaria 
into three unequal parts: Bulgaria proper wholly 
free ; South-eastern Bulgaria (baptized Roumelia), half 
free ; and the large tract of country stretching west- 
ward from the Rhodope to Mount Pindus, which was 
handed back to the absolute dominion of the Sultan. 
According to the celebrated German Geographer — 
Kiepert — the Bulgaria of San Stefano — the Bulgaria 
that Russia emancipated — consisted of 65,560 square 
miles, with 3,980,000 inhabitants. 

The Congress 'Bulgaria' consists only of 24,404 
square miles, with 1,773,000 inhabitants. Eastern 
Roumeha, which was only half-freed, has 13,646 
square miles, and 740,000 inhabitants. Thus the 

of Engliahmen. In order Ibat be might have his wbj, the Bulgunans, 
who were emancipated, those upon whom the dajapiing from on high 
had aiiaeu, have been shut out from light and freedom, and have been 
eonngmed onc« more to Turkisb t<rr«nnj. Can jou conceire that in 
KoumeliBi, south of the Balkaiw, those Bulgfirians who know that their 
brothers in the north are going to be free, and that thej them(>elvee in the 
•outh are to be abut out from freedom through the action, shame be it 
caid, of an English Minister, that these poptdations will bear good-will 
towards England!* Can jou conceive that thej, thrown back into ser- 
vitude, will feel anything other than indignation at the countrj which, 
being free itself and enjojing the blesnngs of freedom, has, through the 
most miforable jealousies interfered to prevent the giving of freedom to 
others, or speak of Englishmen excepting as of those wbo would sacrifice 
all human progress in order to further thor most petij and miserable 
deMgn^ ? ' 

Divided Bulgaria, 115 

Bulgaria and Eastern Roumelia, whose emancipation 
and semi-emancipation the Congress legalised, consist 
only of 38,050 square miles, with 2,500,000 inhabit- 
ants, and a great area of 27,510 square miles, with 
a population of 1,500,000, was re-enslaved by 
England at the Congress without any guarantee from 
the Turks against a repetition of the atrocities which 
occasioned the war. 

The Bulgaria handed back to what an English 
friend of mine described as * the uncoyenanted mercies 
of the Turks' is actually greater in extent, and 
almost equal in population to the Bulgaria north of 
the Balkans, which alone was really freed. It is in 
this portion of Bulgaria, given back unreservedly to 
the Turks, that the insurrection has broken out.* 

Unchanged and unchangeable, the Turk will 
repeat that which only two years ago awoke in the 
civilised world an outcry of horror and indignation. 
What will England do now when her Moslem protigS 
in the regions restored to him by Lord Beaconsfield, 
lights up once more the flames of Batak and re- 
hearses again the ghastly tragedy of 1876 ? * 

' The following were the early centres of the rising : — the first and 
strongest, along the Struma Valley, in the Perimdagh and the Malesh 
Planina, extending from Djuma and Kriva down to Meliki and Doriana. 
the second, south of Kustendil, at Kosjak, and the Devanitza Planina, 
down to Karatova ; and the third, in the country west of the Vardar 
Valley, ranging from the Karadagh, near Uskub, down to Monastir and 

' As I reyise this, there lies before me an important letter from a distin- 
guished Bulgarian in Pbilippopolis, which says : — < It is almost incredible 
how little attention is paid in England to the condition of unhappy Mace- 
donia, from which, alas, we daily receive dreadful reports of Turkish 
atrocities on our helpless compatriots, who, as you know, compose the 
great majority of the population.' 

I 2 

116 The Russian People and the War. 

The locality where the insurrection has taken 
place is very instructive. Although there is a great 
agitation in Eastern Boumelia, the insurrectionary 
movement exists in that part of Bulgaria which the 
Congress handed back to the direct rule of the Turk 
without any guarantees. A strange ignorance pre- 
vails on this point even in well-informed English 
r\ ""circles. It is said * the Bulgaria of San Stefano was 
too big, and what you call South-Western Bulgaria 
" is Macedonia, and belongs not to the Slavs but to the 
^Greeks.' In reahty it is not so. The boundaries of 
Bulgaria in llie south-west are tolerably well defined. 
Lord Salisbury at the Constantinople Conference drew 
them substantially the same as they appear in the 
Preliminary Treaty of San Stefano. 

Can you wonder that the Bulgarians of Mace- 
donia, for whom Europe demanded the irreducible 
minimum of the Conference, and Bussia the com- 
plete emancipation of the San Stefano Treaty, should 
object to being, as before, surrendered to Turkish 
misrule, in order to please some few diplomatists? 
You know very well that a settlement of this kind 
must be unsettled by the most natural course of 
events. The intelligent leader of the Bulgarians of 
PhiUppopolis writes thus : — * We beheld with astonish- 
ment the present attitude of the Enghsh nation, 
which, in 1876, at the time of the massacres, gave its 
assistance to the suffering Bulgarians. The sympathy 
which is shown to us by the English press is not in 
harmony with the acts of the English Oovernment, 
which strives continually, and by all means, to keep us 

Divided Bulgaria. 117 

in thraldom. It seeks again to thrust us under the 
intolerable yoke of the Turkish Government, which 
treated us Uke wild beasts for five centuries.' 

Against this the Bulgarians have risen in revolt. 
Why should you be astonished ? Have you already ^ ' 

forgotten the fate of the Treaty of Villafranca, that ( I ^ 
miserable document which brought to a sudden and 
disappointing close a war, undertaken for the libera- 
tion of Italy ' from the Alps to the Adriatic ? ' That 
Treaty was annihilated in less than a yeaiv— and why ? 
Because it ignored the national aspirations of the 
ItaUans. So will the Treaty of Berlin disappear, not 
by the all-powerful ' Russian intrigue,' but because it 
was a mockery of a whole nation, deciding its future 
in a merciless way, without even the semblance of 
consulting its interests.^ 

Was England simply playing a part in her re- >. 

joicing when Garibaldi's sword and Cavour's state- (^ I S 
craft completed the emancipation of Italy ? Was she 
then hypocritical. And, if not, how can she curse 
Bulgaria for attempting to free herself from an enemy 
even worse than the Austrians and the Pope ? Have 
you then been sincere ? Prove it now. The whole 
Slavonic world watches you with eager interest. 

^ Mr. E. A. Freeman, added to his many seryices to the Slavonic 
cause, that of writing on October «X), 1878, one of his most vigorous and 
spirited letters in defence of the insurgents, from which I venture to 
make the following extract : — ' England must once more insist that the 
rulers of England shall at least do nothing against the cause of right and 
freedom. We must speak out and tell Lord Beaconsfield and Lord 
Salishury that, if Macedonia can keep its freedom, either alone or by the 
help of Russians or any other people, we at least will not hinder it Let 
all men understand that we will not be helpers in bringing Christian men 
under barbarian bondage. If the Treaty of Berlin binds us to do so, i\ 
binds us to do evil, and a promise to do evil is not binding,' 


118 The Russian People and the War. 

Whether the Bussian Government likes it or not 
— whether once more our officials try above all to 
soothe Lord BeaconBfield'B feelinga — * Bulgaria, United 

1,1'*^ and Free from the Danube to the .^ean,' will be the 
battle-cry of the struggle which has now commenced. 
Again, I ask : — Put to this new test, what will the 
free, humanitarian, the noble England do ? Now, the 
Slavs want deeds, not merely words. * Enough of com- 
pliments ! ' Energetic, active sympathy is now wanted, 
v^ Let us hope that the men of Macedonia may 

j^^ accomplish a task which has baffled Christendom. 

i But the Treaty of Berlin — that solemn European 

compact, does it bind the Bulgarians? Protocols, 
though written with a golden pen, do they express 
their wishes? Have they been signed by them? 
Were the poor Slavs consulted about their destinies 
and those of their children? Greeks were heard. 
Houmanians, even Persians ; but Bulgarians, on 
whose behalf war was undertaken, were not per- 
mitted to raise their voices in the Areopagus of 
Europe ! 

Against the injustice of Kplomacy behold in 
South- Western Bulgaria the protest of Humanity ! I 
quote once more, for the last time, from tlie Bulgarian 
protest addressed to your Queen, which is dated 
July 31, 1878:— 

We raise our voice t« protest loudly aguinst the uaju«t 
decision of the Berlin Congress, and declare we can neither 
accept it nor bow our heads before the attempt of England 
to destroy ub as a people. We cannot eiibmil again to the 
Turkish d«mination. Our natioLality will defend itself to 

Divided Bulgaria. 119 

the last drop of its blood, rather than fall again under Tur- 
kish rule. It will, therefore, be required that new torrents 
of blood be shed in our unfortunate and devastated country. 

K Bulgaria is not crushed by her former op- 
pressors, if she gains her longed-for liberty, it will 
happen in spite of what was done at Berlin. A 
parchment may be torn, but a nationality has more 
vitahty than paper .^ 

' As these pages are passing through the press, I have lecdred a copy 
of the latest appeal which the unfortunate Bulgarians of Macedonia have 
addressed to ike Powers which handed them over to the vengeance of 
their oppressors. This appeal is moderate in tone, and reasonable in its 
request. It is dated January 1, 1880, is signed by 102 representatiTes of 
Bulgarian communities, and is addressed to the Ambassadors of the Powers 
at Constantinople. The following are its salient passages : — ' The state 
of afTairs in Macedonia becomes daily, through the fault of the local 
authorities, more and more intolerable. Thefts, nusdemeanours, murders, 
abuses, and crimes of all kinds increase in a most terrifying manner. The 
criminals who were seized by the Christians and handed over to the 
authorities remain not only unpunished, but are even acquitted, and they 
use their freedom to continue, being armed from head to foot, their 
former cruelties against the unarmed Bulgarians. The authorities openly 
show their partiality for the Mahometans. These facts deprive us of 
every hope that the local authorities will redress these grievances. The 
public insecurity, of course, greatly endangers labour and wages; the 
number of those in need of their daily bread is, therefore, already very 
large. ' The Sublime Porte has obliged itself, by means of Article XXUL 
of the Berlin Treaty, to introduce reforms into European Turkey, which 
should, in order to make them correspond to the wants of every province, 
be deliberated upon by Commissions in which the respective local elements 
should be prominently represented, the final settlement of the projected 
reforms to be made by a European Commission. The Bulgarians of 
Macedonia most respectfully solicit the attention of the Government 
represented by your Excellency for a speedy realisation of the above- 
mentioned Artide XXII I. A benevolent intervention of the powerful 
Government of your Excellency can end the sufferings of the Macedonian 
Christians, sufferings which, it is hoped, vrill be redressed by the intro- 
duction of reforms.' 

A vain hope ! Article XXIII., like all other articlee of the Berlin 
Treaty, depending for their execution on the Turk, remuns a dead letter. 
And will remain such as lorg as the Turk remains in his place of power. 


e iliatribution of the different 

by KiepLit (.'/re Iheiear. 

I of peace there has hei-ii 

'capmaker ha8 as yet Tentared 

in Balgaria and Eastern 

I ^ ^l—j Jii> war, and there are fewtf 

J j ft, ' \ I free and aotonomons States. 

ttalgaria of San Stefana 

lie etlicolo^cal facts tiian 

e most stiiclly Bulgarian 

as been eiclnded. Leet any 

•ily of Kippert, I will qaotA 

-' o / Campbell, M.P. Referring 

' y'^T^alkan, Bir Geoi^ Campbell 

V- ^ ti Question depends on a dne 

*? ya (if the Bnlgnrian conntry, 

i»~-r- f '*'! liow much tliey occnpy the 

™ ^^ - y.ufEuropejui Turkey On 

US Sulonira, the Bulgarian 
very clear German ethno- 
lished, which givea the faces 
laghly dclitieatcd on a small 
11 my inqairies and personal 
Ime to test Kiepert's map, go 
From uoltating consalar and 
had made ont the Bulgarian 
it before I had aeon his map, 
ich I Tiaited, my inquiries led 
ea the Greeks the country up 
seems about as mncfa as they 
e then to near Adrianople and 
(lesB a small Greek fringe) 
rian country, except so far as 

greater or less degree.' 
(Hi VifW of Turketj, pp. 11-13. 

PAET n. 










Within the last few years Russians have been much 
puzzled by the rapid changes through which one of 

' Lord Salisbury, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, speaking at 
a Conservative Banquet in the Free Trade Hall, Manchester, October 17, 
1879, used the following expressions : — ' If the Turk falls, remember that 
Austria is now at Novi Bazar, and has advanced to the latitude of the 
Balkans, and that no advance of Russia beyond the Balkans or beyond 
the Danube can now be made unless the resistance of Austria is con- 
quered. Austria herself is powerful. I believe that in the strength and 
independence of Austria lie the best hopes of European stability and 
peace. What has happened within the last few weeks justifies us in 
hoping that Austria, if attacked, would not be alone. The newspapers 
say — I know not whether they say rightly — that a defensive alliance has 
been established between Germany and Austria. I will not pronounce 
any opinion as to the accuracy of that information ; but I will only say 
this to you and all who value the peace of Europe and the independence 
of nations — I may say without profanity — that it is ** good tidings of 
great joy." ' 

'The conception of constituting Austria the gaoler of the Slav 
nationalities is a conception which is unworthy of practical statesmen, 
and altogether repugnant to Liberal principles. Russia has pursued a 
policy far more astute. She has won the hearts of those provinces by 
making herself the patron of their independence. She leaves it to 
Austria to assume the position of the conqueror of alien races and of a 
dissatisfied people. We have had ** glad tidings of great joy * declared 
to us by an uninspired and not particularly angelic Secretary of State, 
but the proclamation of that evangel has not been followed by peace on 
earth or goodwill towards men. It is my belief that that mischievous 
speech has done more to embitter the passions and inflame the jealousies 
of nations than any words which have been spoken in our time ; and 
principaUy, I believe, as a consequence of it, we are threatened every 
morning by the organs of the Government with a new European war.' — 
Sir William Harcourt, Jan. 13, 1880. 

124 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

your Ministers have passed ; but, accustomed as we 
have been to the transformations of the modern 
Proteus, we were hardly prepared for his sudden 
advent as a Herald Angel. His proclamation to the 
Manchester representatives of the Shepherds of 
Bethlehem of the * GkKxi tidings of great joy ' has 
hardly been accepted in Bussia as a message of peace 
and goodwill. It is not the facts, or assumed facts, 
that disturb us. It is the spirit of the speech which 
excites the indignation occasioned by insulting menace 
of wanton war. It is difficult to exaggerate the 
feeling aroused by Lord Salisbury's speech in all 
Bussian circles. It even extends to the long-suffering 
Ministry of Foreign Affairs. That humble paper, 
the semi-official Journal de St. Pitershourg^ seldom 
expresses the most legitimate sentiments save in the 
most timid, hesitating, over-diplomatic manner, but 
even that journal declares that it could not believe 
that any Minister, especially the Foreign Minister of 
a Great Power, could have made a speech so entirely 
contrary to all the traditions governing Ministerial 
utterances concerning Powers with which they enter- 
tain friendly relations. * The proceeding,' it remarks, 
* is little suited {peu conforme) to the dignity of a great 
nation with which our country is living at peace.' 
That is the reserved fashion in which our semi- 
official organ, respecting the conventionalities of the 
diplomatic intercourse which Lord Salisbury so 
rudely violates, implies rather than expresses the 
universal feeling of indignant surprise which the 
speech excited in Bussia. For the frank, outspoken 

Lord Salisbury as Herald Angel. 125 

expression of that feeling you must look to the 
Moscow Gazette, rather than to the French St. Peters- 
burg paper, and the utterances of that best repre- 
sentative of the views of the Russian people contrast 
strongly with the few stammering remarks of its well- 
bred St. Petersburg contemporary.^ The conviction 

* The M08COW Gazette is the Times of Ruaaia in one sense, bat not in 
another. It is the first paper in the Empire, but it leads rather than 
follows public opinion. The Times changes with the times. The Moscow 
Gazette adheres to its own views. The Times is impersonal, anonymous. 
The Moscow Gazette is Mr. Eatkoff, and Mr. Eiitkoff is the Moscow Ga^ 
zette. He has his colleagues, but his individuality permeates the paper. 

Few men have influenced more deeply the course of events in Russia 
since the Emancipation than the quondam Professor of Philosophy in the 
University of Moscow. A Russian of the Russians, married to Princess 
ShaUkofi*, daughter of a Russian poet, he was at one time so ardent an 
admirer of England and the English that his friends reproached him for 
his Anglo-mania. A brilliant author, a learned professor, a fearless 
journalist, Mr. KatkoiTs chief distinction is due to the fact that he more 
than any man incarnated the national inspirations at three crises in 
Rusnan history. 

It was in 1863 that he first attracted the attention of Russia. In 
that year the determination of the Poles that half of Russia should be 
included in the limits of the Poland to which a Constitution was about 
to be granted, brought them into violent collision with the Russian 
Government. All the Powers of Europe began to intermeddle in the 
matter. ' You must do this ; you must not do that,' and so on. The 
despatched came pouring in from this Court and from that, until even 
little Portugal and barbarous Turkey ventured to send us their prescript 
tions for pacifying Poland t Russians felt profoundly humiliated, and 
not a little indignant. ' Were we not to be masters in our own house ? 
Were we to be treated as if we were the vassals of the West P ' These 
angry questionings filled every breast ; and, amid the irritation occasioned 
by the intermeddling of the Foreign Courts, everything was forgotten 
but a stem resolve to vindicate the national independence. At that crisis 
in our history Mr. Eatkofi'came boldly to the front, embodied the thoughts 
of millions in his fiery articles, and gave voice and utterance to the patriotic 
enthusiasm of every Russian. W^hen the storm had passed, and all dan- 
ger of war was averted by the adoption of the independent policy which 
he had so vigorously advocated, the intrepid spokesman of the national 
sentiment occupied the highest place in the esteem of his countrymen 
ever attained by any journalist in Russia before or since. A public sub* 
scription was raised, and Mr. Katkoft* was presented, in the name of thou- 

126 The Future o/Ae Eastern Qfiestion. 

is universal that it means mischief. * If they did not 
mean war,' our people naively say, ' they would not 
provoke it. Surely serious statesmen have no time 
for mauvaises plaisanteiHes. If they are in earnest, 
let us be prepared.' The eoacluBion is as natural as 
the consequences are deplorable. But although Lord 
Salisbury has threatened and blustered in the past, 
only to be answered by a slap in the face from tlie 
Turks, it is, of course, not impossible that he may 
sometime or other attempt to make good his words. 
Apart from the bad results it has had on my 

unds of eympntliiiera througliaut the Empire, with k mutDTe Bilrer 
figure of a soldier, in the old RunDBU unifomi, holding proudly nloft n 
atandud, bearing ' Unity of RuMia ' aa its inacriptioD. 

Soma yean later Mr. Katkoff came once more to the front. The ques- 
tion of daaaical education then excited intenxeintereat throughout Rueun; 
and the Moscow Oaxttte led the van of the flght, which resulled in Uie 
complete victorj of the classical party. As one result of this succphs, 
' The Lyceum of the Grand-Buke Nicholas ' was founded at Moscow, in 
honour of the late Tiarewitch, Mr. Kathoflf and Mr. LeontiefT, his altrr 
tgo — and a very distinguished scholar — were associated at first in the 
superintendence of the new institution. Since the death of the latter — 
which was lamented throughout Russia as a nsUonal loss — Mr. KatkofT 
has discbaiged alone the duties of Pre^dont. 

The third great cri^ in which Mr. RatkolTand the Moaetne Oazrttt 
did good service to the Russian cause was in the Slavonic movement of 
last year. Mr. KatkofT has never been identified with the Slavophile 
party. But when the Servian war awakened the national enthuaiamn, 
Mr. Katkoff thr«w himself heart and soul \n^a the Slavonic cause. lie 
guided, directed, and sustained more than any single man the tumultuous 
current of Rusiuan opinion. The Motcoto Qaitltt became once more the 
exponent of the national conviction, and to thia hour it maintains the 
honourable poaition of the leading journal of Russia. 

Mr. Katkoff publishes not only the Motcow Gautit, but also a monthly 
literary organ — the Rusuan Mfigevgrr. He is famoua throughout Europe 
for hia iaci«ve atyle and hia vigorous hard-hitting. The courage with 
which he has assailed abuses has not prevented the appointment of his 
daughter. Miss Barbe Katkoff, — now married to that brilliant journaliat. 
Prince \Aon Schohofakoy, — aa demoiselle dlioansur (o Her Majesty the 

Lord Salisbury as Herald Angel. 127 

countrymen, the speech rather amuses me. It is so 
diverting to congratulate a Foreign Minister upon the 
discovery of the existence of the German Empire. 
What a pity he did not discover it sooner I Writing 
two years ago on * England's Traditional Pohcy/ I 
ventured to insist upon the obvious fact that the 
establishment of the German Empire had transformed 
the whole European situation, and for ever * saved 
the Continent from the dread of absolute pre- 
dominance of Russia.' As no one beUeves that poor, 
dear Austria contributes largely to the strength of 
the * AlUance,' I fail to see in the new Gospel of Lord 
Salisbury anything more than a somewhat undignified 
* Eureka' — almost as fresh as the virtues of large 
maps. * nfait de la prose sans le savoir,' and a hero 
of the Berlin Congress has been somewhat tardy in 
perceiving the political significance of United Ger- 

Not so long ago the will of our Emperor was law 
in the Diet of Germany. At that time the small 
German princes were known as the * poor relatives of 
the Tzar,' and their subservience to their august 
patron was notorious. All this was changed, not 
when Prince Bismarck favoured Vienna with a call, 
but since the proclamation of the German Empire in 
1871. Is it not known even at the English Foreign 
Office that Russia had some Uttle part in that historic 
drama? Surely not even the * veracious' Lord 
SaUsbury — as Sir Wilfrid Lawson so cruelly calls him 
— would claim the German Empire as the product of 
Lord Beaconsfield's diplomacy. If Russia were so 


128 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

given up to an aggressive policy, it was hardly con- 
sistent to have aided so effectively the realisation of 
the German national idea.* 

Some people seem to think that Germany may 
imitate the example of Austria, and ' astonish the 
world by her ingratitude.' Surely we may hope, on 
the contrary, that a race which, with Bussia's 
support, has retained the realisation of its national 
idea, will not oppose, but even support the equally 
Intimate and natural aspirations of the Slavonic 
race to secure the freedom and independence so 
cruelly denied to that long-oppressed nationality. 

We have no wish to pick a quarrel with Germany, 
nor has Germany, I beUeve, any intention of quarrel- 
ling with us. There may have been some slight 
personalities between personages, but that is all. 
Even this has been ridiculously exaggerated. Take, 
for instance, the sensational report published by tlie 
Soleil of an alleged interview between its corresjmn- 
dent and Prince Gortschakoff. Our Chancellor has a 
rule, to which he makes no exception, never to receive 
any newspaper correspondents. I heard the other 
day that the famous 'interview' took place in the 
street. Tlie correspondent of the Soleil, armed with 
a letter of introduction from a distinguished French 
statesman, accosted our Chancellor, wlio, excusing 

' Not so long ago it used to bo n stock charge agaiost us by our 
enemies that. Russia nuuntaiued for her own selfish purposes a weak and 
divided Qermany. A raUd wntar during the CiimaaQ war attacked 
Rusrian policy under Alexander 1. specially on that ground. lie said : — 
' Whatever endangered, impoverished, disgraced Germany, and kept 
Oenoany down, was a atone added to the vast, but hollow, edifice of the 
Rii!«ian autocracy.' — Foreign Biographin, vol. ii. p. 137. 

Lord Salisbury as Herald Angel. 129 

himself for being unable to receive him, disengaged 
himself from his would-be interviewer with a few civil 
commonplaces. Upon this the ingenious correspon- 
dent allowed his imagination to fabricate the article 
which created such a stir amongst the credulous. 
Bussians — unfortunately perhaps — are so loath to 
correct absurd stories, so persistently invented to 
their discredit for sensational or for party purposes 
in the West, that it is unfair — to say the least — to 
conclude because no contradiction or explanation is 
given, that, therefore, every legend must be true. 

The policy of Eussia — nearest neighbours, fastest 
friends — is too deeply rooted to be easily shaken. In 
one respect, I am sorry to say, I resemble Lord 
Salisbury. I am not in the secrets of European 
Cabinets, and have, Uke that Foreign Minister, to seek 
my information in the reports (not always particularly 
trustworthy) of the newspapers. But if it be true 
that the Triple Alliance is at an end, I do not mourn 
over its decease. As Mr. Forster so truly said in his 
forcible speech at Bradford, alliance with one Power 
implies hostility to another. Now we have no 
hostility to France. Quite the contrary. And if we 
are isolated, what harm is there in that? Is isolation 
not generally accompanied by independence, and 
would it not give us a free hand at home as abroad ? 

It is universally assumed that Bussians regard 
Austria-Hungary with animosity. It is not so. There \ 
can be no national hatred between Bussians and 
Austrians, because there are no Austrians. As Prince 


130 The Future of the Eastern (^tesHm. 

Gortschakoff once wittily observed : ' Austria is not 
a nation ; she is not even a State ; she is only a 
GJovemment.' la the vast conglomeration of nation- 
alities included in the dominions of Francis Joseph 
there is even now a majority of Slavs. Every step 
southward increases the preponderance of the Slavonic 
element. With the Slavs of Austria and Hungary — 
that is, with the majority of the subjects of the 
Hapsburgfl — the Slavs of Russia can only have the 
livehest feehngs of sympathy and fraternity.' 

Lord Salisbury impUes that the Austrian occupa- 
tion of the Bosnian Provinces was a triumphant 
device of Enghsh diplomacy to checkmate ' Russian 
aggression.' But here, as in Germany, the great 
' barrier to Russian aggression ' was raised by Russian 
hands. The proposal that Austria should ocaipy the 
Provinces emanated from our Government. It was 
suggested by Russia in the autumn of 1876,' then 
again in the autumn of 1877, and only accepted in 
Berlin in 1878. But in 1876 Lord Salisbury, perhaps, 
was too much engrossed in ' creating a pretext ' for 

' A feeling, I maj add, that u warmly letuprocated b; them, u maj 
be seen bj tlie fbUowing extract bam a letter, addreBsed during tbe 
recent wnr bj Dr. Ke^ier, tlie influeotwl leader of the Bohemian Pan- 
sis viHta to the Moecow Slavonic Oommittee : — ' Hon is it poeuble that the 
Bohemian people should not dedre from the bottom of its heart the com- 
plete succeas of the Roeoan arms ? Do not Ibe Ruasians go to battle for 
right, freedom, religion, for humanitarianiMn, for the hononf of the 
family irhich hare been long enoogfi insnlted on the aoil of Christian 
Europe ? The glorj of the Rusaiana in tliat atmggle is our glory, and it 
raises tbe pride of all Slavonians, and thair self-conaciousness that tbe 
blood of our brethren will be ahed for our brethren. We cannot but 
rejoice when the powerful SUt, by defending the weak Slars, has earned 
a right to the gratitude and lore of the whole Slavonic family.' 

* Bltio Bo<A, Torkey, 1 (1877), p. 405. 

Lord Salisbuiy as Herald Angel. 131 

invading Afghanistan to notice such trifles as the fate 
of the Ottoman Empire. 

In spite of the newspapers — the oracles of English 
diplomacy — ^I do not believe that the ' Austro-German j 
Alliance ' has the significance attached to it by certain 
interested pohticians. But if an offensive and defen- 
sive aUiance has been concluded, why do you imagine 
that it has any reference, much less exclusive refer- 
ence, to Russia? In aU the accusations levelled 
against Bussia for the last twenty years, who has ever 
accused us of meditating war on Germany or Austria ? 
But are such purposes actually unknown in other 
lands ? The revindication of former frontiers, the 
redemption of unredeemed territory, these are not 
the watchwords of Russian policy — although, perhaps, 
they are not altogether unfamiliar to German and 
Austrian statesmen. 

I have not yet heard any antiphon from across 
the Channel answering the song of the Herald Angel 
of Manchester, proclaiming as good * tidings of great 
joy' the formation of an offensive and defensive 
aUiance between Austria-Hungary and the pos- ^ 
sessors of Alsace and Lorraine. K Lord Salisbury 
sacrifices with a liglit heart the entente cordiale 
pour les beaux yeux of Prince Bismarck and Count 
Andrassy, he wiU, of course, find his hands freer 
in E^pt and the Mediterranean for counteracting 
aggressive designs on British interests. 

It is strange that the Austro-German AUiance 
should be so heartily welcomed by an EngUsh Foreign 
Secretary on the understanding that it foreshadows 

132 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

Austria's succeesion to the inheritance of the Turk, 
which would involve her total transformation. The 
thrusting of Austria eastward was originally devised 
to weaken England. Prince Talleyrand, who, like 
Lord Salisbury, held curious theories as to the use of 
langut^e, was its author. In the excellent ' History 
of Russia ' by that brilliant writer M. Kambaud,' so 
well translated into Englbh by Mrs. Lang, Lord 
Salisbury will find the following passage, which is 
not without some little interest : — 

In 1809 Talleyrand had submitted to Xapoleon a project 
which consisted in indemnifying Austria by putting her into 
pOBsessioD of the Boumanian Principalities and of the Slav 
provinces of Turkey, which would have created a permanent 
conflict of interests between Russia and Austria. The former, 
repulsed from the Danube, would have been forced to turn 
towards Central Asia — towards Hindostan. In this emer- 
gency she would in her tiun, have found herself at perpetual 
war with England ; and all germ of coalition against the 
French Empire would by this means have been extinguished. 

The danger foreseen by Talleyrand is not more 
remote to-day ; but I do not think it is greatly to be 

Russia will not permit Austria to possess herself 
of the Balkan Peninsula any more than you will 
permit France to possess Egypt — of that there is no 
question. It is more probable that the development 
of the East wiU result in the conversion of Austria- 
Hungary and the States of the Balkans into a Con- 
federation of the Danube, which, after the German 
and Italian elements had sought their own, would be 

' RMnbftud's Hulary efStutia, vol. iL p. 2^. 

Lord Salisbury cls Herald Angel. 133 


an essentially Slavonic State. It is a joke in Moscow 
that the * Sick Man ' at Constantinople being in articulo 
mortis^ the attention of Europe will have to be turned 
to the * Sick Woman ' of Vienna-Pesth. But surely, 
after the experience of the late war, Bussia will not 
be left, by the abdication of the European concert, to 
settle another Eastern question by herself. 




What do Euswans think of the Anglo-Turkish Con- 
ventioD P Frankly speaking, very little. It excited 
Bome attention at first, but now it is not regarded 
seriously. In spite of the emphatic speeches one 
hears on every aide about the sacredness, the in- 
violability, the eternity of treaties, somehow or other 
it seems as if your Ministers themselves never con- 
sidered that secret arrangement to be a reahty. It 
is rather regarded as an ideal, wluch, like every ideal, 
by its very nature cannot be realised. 

When it was first announced, of course, Russians, 
like other people, thought there must be something in 
it. This impression was strengthened by the extra- 
ordinary triumphs accorded to Lord Beaconsfield and 
liis alter ego — Lord Salisbury. London seemed enrap- 
tured. The two conquerors were enthusiastically 
welcomed, even ladies being anxious to accompany 
their victorious procession, to testify before the eyes 
of the world their delight and sympathy. 

Little by little, however, the scene began to change 
like a mirage of the desert. Indiscreet questions were 
' Written Not. 1878. 

The Anglo-Turkish Convention. 136 

heard to the effect as to who was the real gainer — 
Turkey or England ? Lord Beaconsfield or the Sultan ? 
Was it really a case of * diamond cutting diamond ? ' 
Some sober minds appealed to facts, and tried to sum 
up the real significance of these transactions. The 
purchase of Cyprus was ironically designated in Bussia 
as a new * Qd perdj gagneJ Prudent and practical, 
as you ever are, you undertook besides to defend the 
Sultan's territory, without having ever had it definitely 
explained what that defence would actually involve.^ 

When you really are in earnest you do not take 
things so easily. In India you are invading A%han- 
istan with what the Times calls 'a great army' of 
34,000 men, which actually constitutes almost one of 
our army corps, and aU this simply in order to preserve 
your frontier from even the shadow of a Russian 
visitor — a hundred miles off at Cabul. Even the 
adherents of the Afghan campaign admit that the 
rectification of your north-western frontier will cost 
you many millions. The great natural rampart which 
divides you from the terrible Afghans is pronounced 
by your Premier to be haphazard, and therefore it 

^ While discussing Russian opinions on the Conyention it maj be weU 
merely to mention that in December the Nord published the following sig^ 
nificant sentence in a letter from St. Petersburg : — ' You have been right in 
saying that the separate Conyention between England and the Porte rela^ 
tive to the island of Cyprus and Asia Minor does not bind any of the other 
Powers. Not only this, but they are ignorant of its existence, or rather 
for them it does not exist By the Treaty of Berlin, Asia Minor remains 
subject to the stipulations of the Treaty of Paris, and England haying 
signed both treaties she is, with regard to the other Powers, bound only 
by their stipulations. The question of this separate Conyention would 
certainly haye been raised if Lord Beaconsfield's Cabinet, continuing its 
first attempts, had pretended to any particular rights in the internal 
affiois of Asia Ifinor.' 

1 36 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

must be replaced at once bj a scientific frontier. 
Yet, haphazard though it be, y oiir Indian frontier, 
compared with that of Afdatic Turkey, is aimply 
impr^nable. But you do nothing to strengthen the 
latter, although it lies defenceless at the feet of our 
garrison at Kars. 

The poor Turks, after their new Convention, can- 
not even get a little money from you to build new 
fortresses and equip their army. Actions always 
speak louder than words, and as we interpret your 
Convention by your conduct, Lord Beaconsfield's 
* Halt,' seems to us to have no more reality than the 
previous ' three campaigns ' with which he tried to 
prevent Bussia doing her duty two years ago. 

If you meant to fulfil your obligations, you would 
prepare to meet your responsibilities. But, seeing 
that nothing is done, we conclude that you are some- 
what uncertain as to the necessity of carrying out 
any new policy. Are we so wrong, after all ? Or do 
you deiy every indiscreet investigation ? Of course, 
we can only judge from our point of view, and thus 
we can only be ' one-sided.' But is not that the case 
with every poor mortal, however anxiously he pre- 
tends to be the very opposite ? If we are mistaken, be 
patient with us, and we will pay you with your own 
coin. Besides, people differ so much about certain 
notions. Some call ' Peace and honour ' what others 
declare to be 'War and humbug,' to mention one 
among many similar instances, and so granting the 
fallibility of our judgments, let me express them 

Tlie Anglo-Turkish Convention. 137 

Although the Anglo-Tiirkish Convention practi- 
cally seems to us to mean nothing, theoretically, it 
is very highly esteemed in Bussia, at least by some 
Bussians, and these not the least influential. It is 
the historical justification of the Treaty of Kainardji, 
the tardy, but. complete, admission by England of 
the principle adopted by Bussia a hundred years ago. 

There are those who speak of the Treaty of 
Berlin as annihilating the results of the Crimean War. 
In one sense they may be right, but in another they 
are quite wrong. 

The vital principle of the Paris Treaty, the recog- 
nition of which by Europe was the great result of the 
Crimean War, was not annihilated, but reaffirmed and 
strengthened, by the Berlin Treaty. But that principle 
— ^the European concert established by the Western 
nations against Bussia at the Paris Congress — ^has 
been annihilated by the Anglo-Turkish Convention. 
The work of Lord Clarendon has been undone by 
Lord Beaconsfield, and the Bussian principles, eclipsed 
by the disasters at Sebastopol, have been vindicated 
at last by the English Government. 

This is all the more gratifying to Bussians, be- 
cause it was the unsohcited act of our opponents. 
The Anglo -Turkish Conyention is but the Treaty of 
Kainardji written large and appHed to Asia, where 
tliere was much less need for it than in Europe, where 
our protectorate was needed for the protection of the 
Christian nationaUties. It involves the formal re- 
pudiation of the European concert, now pubUcly 
derided by Lord Salisbury, and the adoption of the 

138 The Future of the Eastern QuasHdn. 

old Bussian principle of direct dealing with the Forte, 
with exclusive privil^ea of interfering in the internal 
affairs of the Ottoman !Eknpire. For muntaining this, 
Sussia was denounced as the enemy of civilisation ; 
but, now that it is affirmed by Lord Beaconsfield and 
Lord Salisbury, you load them with honours and 
decorations. To simple-minded people like ourselves 
it seems a curious inconsistency.^ 

The re-establishment of the principle of direct 
dealings with the Porte is not merely a complete 
vindication of Bussia before the tribunal of history, 
it is most important with relation to the future 
development of events in the East. Bussia loyally 
recognised the authority of the European concert 
even when England was destroying it. We carried 
our Preliminary Treaty of San Stefano to the Euro- 
pean Areop^us — to be mutilated by diplomacy — 
oqly to learn that England, which had made no 
sacrifices but those of (what we call) honour and 

' SpetkiDK on Xoyember 27, 1870, in Uidlotlii&n, of the Anglo- 
TurUsh Convention, Mr. Qladstone said: — 'For who would have be- 
lieved it possible tliat we should ueert berore the world the principle 
that Europe oqIj could deal with the affairs of the Turkiah Empire, 
and should aak Parliament for mi piilliona to support ua in asserting 
that priaciple, should send Ministers to Berlin, who declared that un- 
l>ts9 that principle was acted upon thej would go to war with the 
material that Parliament had placed in their hands, and should at the 
fame time be concluding a separate agreement with Tnik«y, under 
which those matters of European jurisdiction were coolly transferred 
to English jiiiisdiction ; and the whole matter was sealed with the 
worthless bribe of the possesion and adnuni^tration of the island of 
t^yprus? In the case of the Anglo-Turkish Convention, we have as- 
serted for ourselves a principle that we had denied to others — namely, 
the principle of OTerriding the European authority of the Treaty of 
Paris, and takmg the matters which that treaty gave to Europe into 
our own separate jurisdiction.' — Politkut ^rteim, p. 00. 

The Anglo-Turkish Convention. 139 

truth, had made a secret treaty with the Sultan, 
which she refused to submit to the Berlin Congress.^ 
Many people thought that measure not exactly chival- 
rous, but the refusal to have any judge as to her 
actions, the determination to follow only her own 
views without any coquettish desire to gratify every- 
body, displayed a certain defiant self-assertion with 
which I can sympathise. 

The lesson was a painfiil one, but at least we have 
henceforth a fi:*ee hand. Bussia evidently has now the 
right to make Conventions with the Porte as well as 
England ; and, frankly speaking, we could afford to 

' Speaking at Glasgow in December, 1870, Mr. Gladstone said 'the 
Anglo-Turkish Oonvention was in itself a gross and manifest breach of 
the public law of Europe. Because, b7 the Treaty of Paris, the result 
of the Crimean war, it was solemnly enacted that everything that per- 
tained to the integrity and independence of Turkey, and to the relations 
between the Sultan and his subjects, was matter, not for the cognisance 
of one particular Power, but for the joint cognisance of the great Powers 
of Europe. And what did we do in 1878 P When the Russian war 
with Turkey came to a close, we held Russia rigidly to that principle. 
We insisted that the treaty she had made should be subject to the 
review of Europe, and that Europe should be entitled to give a final 
judgment on those matters which fell within the scope of the Treaty 
of Paris. We did that, and we even wasted six millions in warlike 
preparations for giving effect to that declaration. We then brought 
together at Berlin, or assisted to bring together at Berlin, the Powers 
of Europe for the purpose of exercising this supreme jurisdiction ; and 
while they were there, while they were at work, and without the know- 
ledge of any one among them except Turkey, we extorted from the 
Sultan of Turkey — I am afraid by threatening Mm with abandoning the 
advocacy of his cause before the Oongress — we extorted from the Sul- 
tan of Turkey the Anglo-Turkish Oonvention. But the Anglo-Turkish 
Convention was a Convention which aimed at giving us power, in the 
teeth of the Treaty of Paris, to interfere between the Sultan and his 
subjects; and it was a Convention which virtually severed from his 
empire the possession of the island of Cyprus. It interfered with the 
integrity. It interfered with the independence. It broke the Treaty 
of Paris, and the Treaty of Paris was the public law of Europe.' — 
PoliHcal Speeoh€$, ^92. 

140 The Future oftke Eastern Questmi. 

let you have much more than Cyprus to r^ain the 
right of direct dealing with the Sidtan without 
foreign intermeddling. 

The principle of European concert is sometimes 
very good. Bussia has maintained it at great cost to 
herself on more than one occasion, when England in- 
sisted on isolation, and it is not Bussia who has 
destroyed it. But England having done so, can you 
be surprised if we, who have most to do with Turkey, 
should shed no tears on that account ? Our treaties 
henceforth will not be * preliminary,' which really is 
too humble and ridiculous, nor will they be politely 
submitted to the mutilation of a Congress. 

I am told in England that the loss of Cyprus 
has neither diminished the Sultan's dominions nor 
has it impaired his independence. Well, I daresay 
there are other ' Isles of Cyprus ' as yet belonging to 
the expiring ' Sick Man,' and other Powers will per- 
haps take upon themselves the philanthropic duty 
of ' civiHsing and improving them.' 

Bussia has at least as much to offer as Eng- 
land as the price of Cyprus concessions ; nor is 
Lord Beaconsfield the only Minister who can 
guarantee the Turkish frontier or the Sultan's 
independence against aggressive encroaching Powers. 
But we have also other equivalents to offer, without 
giving troublesome guarantees — as, perhaps, you may 
some day discover. 

If, in spite of our efforts, a jealous antagonism 
hns to continue between us, if we are to be still 
rivals ; we cannot sufficiently express our obligations 

The Anglo- Turkish Convention. 141 

to Lord Beaconsfield, whose only fault is that by 
always moving his pieces into our hands he makes 
the game too easy to be exciting or even interesting. 
Thoroughly to enjoy sport it is really necessary to 
have to encounter difficulties and to overcome a cer- 
tain cleverness and skill. But Lord Beaconsfield 
positively seems to enjoy making the game dull. His 
touching satisfaction at our annexing Batoum without 
* shedding one drop of blood ; ' so contrary to the in- 
dignation expressed by the whole of the Ministerial 
press, was quite a curious surprise. 

But perhaps the most curious feature of the Anglo- 
Turkish Convention, is the fact that, while it condi- 
tionally guarantees Asiatic Turkey, it leaves the 
Sultan in unguaranteed possession of C!onstantinople. 
* Neither England nor any other Power guarantees to 
the Turk the continued possession of C!onstantinople 
or of one yard of European soil. 

142 2'he Future of the Ea^ern Question. 



The Sice Man is very sick — dck even unto death. 
What do you propose to do with his inheritance? 
Surely that question is not now too indiscreet ? 

When the Emperor Nicholas made a similar in- 
t'*'^ quiry, many years ago, you were shocked beyond 
expression. Lord Palmerston was positive that this 
interesting patient would soon be quite well, and ' in 
great force.' Eussians, however, turned out to be 
better di^nosists. You hear the Sick Man's death- 
rattle. Who are to be his heirs ? 

A friend of mine who sits at Stamboul, with hia 
finger on the Sick Man's pulse, writes that he does not 
dare to leave the city even for a few days, lest on 
hia return he should find in place of the invalid only 
a corpse on the Bosphorus. The definite catastrophe 
is as near aa it is unavoidable. The Empire, which 
received a new lease of life at Berlin — ' thirty or forty 
years at least,' Lord Salisbury said — ^is already in dis- 
solution. What is to be done with its remains ? 

That great triumph of English diplomacy — ' the 
resuscitation of the Ottoman Empire' — is hardly so 
dazzling now as it was last year. The Palace is in 

The Heirs of ' The Sick Man: 143 

want of mutton, the army in want of bread, the 
treasury in want of funds, the Cabinet in want of 
statesmen, the whole country in want of security 
— both moral and material. Everywhere within this 
subUmc Empire nothing but insurrection. The 
Druses are astir, the Arabs are seething in discontent, 
Kurds and Armenians, plunderer and plundered, are 
equally hostile to the Constantinople Pashas — these 
common foes of human kind. Greek and Albanian 
are even more hostile to the Sultan than the Slav. 
The sword of the Turk has been wrenched from his 
gore-stained hand ; and the East, with wicked in- 
credulity, refuses to believe your Ministerial speeches 
as to the new lease of life granted to the Turkish 

The outlook is not less gloomy abroad. In place 
of friends gathering for liis protection, the Sick Man 
sees vultures impatiently waiting for their repast. 
Even in Eussia we did not know how desperate was 
the condition of the Sultan until we heard he had 
sunk so low that Lord Beaconsfield had ventured to 
insult him, and, without even waiting for * the man- 
date from Heaven' which was lacking in 1877 for the 
liberation of Bulgaria, had coerced the Turk with 
his ironclads to send Baker Pasha on a fool's errand 
into Asia Minor. 

Surely, then, I may be permitted to quote the 
words which our Emperor Nicholas addressed to the 
English Ambassador at St. Petersburg in 1853. We 
need not alter one word, not even one syllable, to 
adapt them for the situation in 1879, Spoken in 

144 The Future of Ute Eastern Queetim. 

confidence — ^which you violated — twenty-six years 
ago, we repeat them to-day without reserve as em- 
bodying the wisest counsel that Russians can offer to 

' The affairs of Turkey are in a very disorganised 
condition, the country itself seems to be falling in 
pieces, and it is very important that England and 
Kussia should come to a perfectly good understanding 
upon these affairs. We have on our hands a Sick 
Man, a very Sick Man ; it will be, I tell you frankly, 
a great misfortune if one of these days he should shp 
away from us, especially before all necessary arrange- 
ments were made ; and, if the Turkish Empire falls, 
it falls to rise no more ; and I put it to you, there- 
fore, whether it is not better to be provided before- 
hand for a contingency, than to incur the chaos, con- 
ftision, and the certainty of an European war, all of 
which must attend the catastrophe if it should occur 
unexpectedly and before some ulterior system has 
been sketched. I repeat, the Sick Man is dying, and 
we can never allow such an event to take us by sur- 
prise. We must come to some understanding. It is 
not an engagement, a convention which I ask of them ; 
it is a free interchange of ideas, and, in case of need, 
the word of a gentleman — ^that is enough between 

Time lias justified our Emperor. Not even your 
Ministry would now deny that the Sick Man's days 
are numbered ; and the letter from Constantinople 
mentioned above contains, curiously enough, almost 

■ Saitfm Pi^en, Put V., pp. 2-6. 


The Heirs of ' The Sick Man: 145 

exactly the expressions of our Monarcli. And then 
the writer adds : ' No efforts to galvanise him perma- 
nently can possibly succeed. There will be a great 
deal of fighting about liis inheritance' — which is 
precisely the probability Russia, in 1853, desired to 
avert. Who are to be his heirs ? Surely sensible 
people would not defer the settlement of that ques- 
tion until we are all in the midst of a culbute 
ginirale. Why is it so difficult to come to an under- 
standing ? 

Russia has no reserves. Her policy is perfectly 
frank and straightforward on this question. Our 
Emperors have repeatedly explained what our views 
are of the disposition of the Sick Man's estates. 

I liavc no authority to speak in the name of 
Russia. I am not, as your papers so kindly declare, 
an agent of our Government (whicli sometimes I 
wish I were, because, then, believe me, I should 
know how to make my voice, not only heard, but 
attentively listened to !). But I am familiar with a 
little of our history, and with the opinions of many 
of our best Russians upon the subject. Under these 
circumstances, one is allowed, perhaps, to speak with 
confidence as to the Russian views on these matters. 

Russia seeks no annexations on the Balkan Penin- 
sula. Within the last sixty years we have thrice dic- 
tated treaties to tlie vanquished Turks, but we have 
not at this moment one foot more territory in Europe 
llian we had in 1815. We have not even taken a 
Cyprus concession from the Sultan in this continent 
as the price of all our victories. Turkey in Europe, 


146 The Future of the Easte^m Question. 

so far as Eussia is concerned, is territorially as she was 
when the Battle of Waterioo was fought. 

This fact at least gives us some claim to your con- 
fidence, when we declare that we want nothing for 
ourselves from the Sick Man's inheritance. 

Our poUcy was accurately defined by Count Nes- 
selrode, exactly fifty years ago. He AVTote : — 

* The Emperor will not advance the boundaries of 
his territory, and only demands from his aUies that 
absence of ambition and of selfish designs of which 
he will be the first to set the example.'^ 

Fifteen years later, when the Emperor Nicholas 
visited England, he repeated this axiom of Bussian 
poHcy in the Balkan. ' I do not claim,' he said, ' one 
inch of Turkish soil,' when he anticipated in his in- 
terview with Sir Eobert Peel the confidences which he 
afterwards shared with Sir Hamilton Seymour. I own I 
admire our Emperor's foresight at that time. ' Turkey,' 
said lie to Lord Aberdeen, ' is a dying man. We may 
endeavour to keep him alive, but we shall not succeed 
— he will, he must die.^ That will be a critical 
moment. I foresee that I shall have to put my armies 
in movement, and Austria must do the same. Must 
not England be on the spot with the whole of her 
maritime forces ? But a Russian army, an Austrian 
army, a great English fleet, all congregated together 
in these parts — so many powder barrels so close to 

* WelUnfftan'a Despatches^ vol. vii. p. 80. 

^ English politicians now speak even more frankly than Russians on 
this point. Sir W. Harcourt recently told his constituents : ' There is 
no policy which is worth discussing which does not assume for its basis, 
and make provision for, the inevitable dissolution of the Turkish Empire. 
That is a thing' which must be, which ought to be, and which will be.* 

The Heirs of ' The Sick Man: 147 

the fire — ^how shall one prevent the sparks from 
catching. Why should we not, then, come to a pre- 
vious understanding, that in case anything unfore- 
seen should happen in Turkey, Bussia and England 
should come to a previous understanding with each 
other as to what they should have to do in common 
{que sHl arrivait quelque chose dimprhm en Turquie^ 
la Russie et PAngleterre se concerteraient prialablement 
entreUes sur ce qu*elles auraient a /aire en commun): ^ 

That straightforward and honest understanding, 
with a view to a future concert prialahle^ le cos 
SchSantj on which the Emperor Nicholas agreed 
with the English Ministers in 1844, is exacUy what 
might be established now. No more and no less. It 
is not to be desired the most in the interests of 
Bussia. If there is to be a general scramble, Bussia 
perhaps is not more unready for doing her part than 
the Government of Lord Beaconsfield. Kars and 
Batoum afibrd better bases of operation than Cyprus ; 
and your difficulties in Zululand lead many to infer 
that the conquest of Asia Minor may be a task be- 
yond your powers. 

The Duke of Wellington, in his Memorandum on 
the Treaty of Adrianople, foreshadowed the concerted 
understanding which is now more than ever to be 
desired. He wrote : ' The object of our measures, 
whatever they are, should be to obtain an engage- 
ment, or, at all events, a clear understanding among 
the Five Powers, that in case of the dissolution of the 
Turkish Monarchy the disposition of the dominions 

> Storkmar'f MmnmrM, voL ii. pp. 106, 114. 

L 2 

148 7%e Future of the Eastern Question. 

hitherto under its government should be concerted 
and determined upon by the Five Powers in Con- 
ference' After urging the importance of concerting 
what should be done, he points out that by such an 
arrangement the Powers would be ' assured that the 
crumbling to pieces of the Turkish Government 
would not create a war, and would not occasion such 
an accession of dominion and power to any State as 
would alter the general balance of power, or give 
reasonable cause of apprehension to others.' 

The necessity of this '■concert prealable' is not 
Kussian, but European. It is urged in the interest of 
the general peace, and of the unhappy populations 
of the East. 

Without a general understanding on a basis of 
abstention from conquests, there may arise most fatal 
emergencies. Let us look at the facts as tliey are. 
An imeute in Constantinople, or even an accident in 
the Seraglio, might to-morrow give the signal for a 
world-wide war over the inlieritance of the Turk. 

If there is such a thing as statesmanship in 
Europe, a contingency so terrible oiiglit not to be 
left for solution to cliancc. 

It is assumctl by some tluit England and Austria 
have settletl everything, without consulting the other 
members of the European <'oncert. Such a settle- 
ment would only settle one thing, and that is — war. 

No Power, and Biissia least of all, ivill ])errait a 
question wliich vitally interests lier as much as any, 
and more than most, to be settled over lier head. 
Her voice must be heai-d, her legitimate interests 

' HWin^ou'ii 7)BV>nfr*«, vol. »i. p, 2!!\ 

The Heirs of ' The Sick Man.' 149 

respected, and her duties fulfilled. This is claiming 
for my country no more than we concede to yours. 
If you exclude us from the Council Chamber, you evi- 
dently prefer meeting us in the field. But there is 
no reason for this morbid dread of Bussia's councils, 
unless there is some arrihe pensie in your minds as to 
territorial annexations. In that case you are, per- 
haps, only right in shrouding your designs in impene- 
trable darkness. We, who have no such reserves, 
can speak frankly. We seek no annexations for our- 
selves ; but this very disinterestedness justifies us in 
resolutely denying annexations to others. 

The territorial integrity of the Ottoman Empire — 
tliat watchword of the past generation — ^reappears 
in a new form as the embodiment of Russia's 
policy in the East. We maintain the territorial 
integrity of the Ottoman Empire, but we demand, 
not the independence, but the elimination of the 
authority of the Sultan. 

We extend that principle to those provinces — 
to Servia, Montenegro, and Eoumania, from which 
the Sultan's authority has been finally eliminated 
by the Treaty of San Stefano, ratified at Berlin. 

Of these States, as well as of all the territory left 
to the Sultan by the BerUn Treaty, Eussia claims 
nothing and concedes nothing. The Balkan lands 
l)elong to the Balkan people. Mr. Aksakofl* accurately 
stated the views of Eussia when he wrote : ' The East 
of Europe belongs to Oriental Europeans ; tlie 
Slav countries belong to the Slavs. It is not a 
question of territorial conquests for Eussia ; it is 
a question of calling to an independent existence 

150 The Future of die Eastern Question. 

(political and social) all these different Slav groups 
frtiich people the Balkan Peninsula.' We have not 
freed them from the pashas of ConatanUnople, to see 
them handed over to the tax-gatherers of Vienna, or 
even' to the Commissioners of London. Bo not 
ima^e that it is only Russians who object to 
an Austrian appropriation of the inheritance of 
the sick man. There is no more rancorous Bus- 
sqahobist fiving than Louis Kossuth, and this 
is his opinion as to the danger before Austria- 
Hungary, which, he says, ' he sees like a death-pro- 
phesying bird, with outstretched wings, fluttering over 
my country.' * What will be the result of the Vienna 
Cabinet should it again follow this damnable policy of 
expediency ? Li the past, it has put a razor in the 
hand of Russia. Now, it would put this razor to the 
throat of Hungary and also of Austria. . . . 
What the Viefinese Cabinet would pilfer from the 
Turkish Empire would only weaken us, and become 
eventually our death ; because it would eternally 
multiply and put into further fermentation all the 
already fermenting and dissolving elements. The 
Slavonians who would be caught by the Viennese 
Cabinet would take the latter with them. And what 
would be the infallible final result? The punishnumt 
of talio. If St. Petersbui^ and Vienna should 
divide the rags of the Turkish Empire, twenty-five 
years would not elapse before the Russians, the 
Prussians, and tlie Itahans would divide Austria and 
Hungary among themselves, perhaps leaving some- 
thing of the booty to Wallachia, as the reward of 

The Heirs of ' Tke Sick Man.' 151 

subserviency to Bussia. This is as true as that there 
is a God.' ^ 

M. Emile de Laveleye, I regret to see, thinks that 
to assure to the Slav j)opulations liberty, autonomy, 
and well-being, the only practical method is to extend 
the influence of Austria. M. de Laveleye is a very 
great authority, I admit ; but even M. de Laveleye's 
ipse dixit would not reconcile these same Slav popu- 
lations to Austrian annexation . ^ Servians, Bulgarians, 
and even Eoumanians (though the latter are united to 
the Balkan Slavs by their religion, not by their 
nationality) regard the prospect of Austrian absorp- 
tion with only less dread than the restoration of 
Turkish authority. 

It is curious that admiration for Austria has 
sprung up in the West. In the East, where Austria 
is better known, Austria is almost detested. 

Even the temble Eussians are more popular 
amongst the Southern Slavs than the admirable 
Austrians, as you may have noticed in the contrast 

* * Rusdan Aggression/ Contemporary Review, December, 1877, pp. 
22, 23. 

^ In the same review in wliich M. de L4iTeloje expresses this con- 
Tiction, Mr. W. J. Stillman remarks: — 'The very constitution, history, 
and organic habit of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy are such, that it 
must always be a source of great apprehension t) a weaker neighbour. 
It is what the Americans call a carpet^-bagger on an Imi)erial scale, and 
has no possible utility for people who are not in need of an esoteric rule. 
As its existence depends on its rights of conquest, its growth must 
always be at the expense of its neighbours. It has no raiton d^etre, ex- 
cept the incapacity of its subjects to govern themselves. It is purely 
parasitic, and any subject nationality which retains vitality as such 
must struggle to throw off the weight of it ; nor is there any possibility 
of its becoming a permanent institution in the face of the development 
of self-government, except by its identifying it«elf with «)rae national 
organism, aftt^r the example of the House of Savoy/ — Article * Italy,* 
Fortmghtly Seviefc, December, 1^70, p. 83«. 



162 TKe Future of the Eastern Question. 

between our welcome by the Christians in Bulgaria 
and the chillii^ reception in Bosnia. When wc say 
'Austria,' it is, in fact, giving a title of courtesy to 
the German-Magyar Government of Vienna-Pesth. 
If a new Austria, essentially Slavonic, were to be 
formed, a voluntary union of the States of the Danube 
might, perhaps, be established ynih advant^e. But 
the Confederation of the Danube must spring front the 
voluntary alliance of Free States, it must not be tlie 
offspring of military conquest, and we doubt whether 
' Austria ' would be the name by which the Slavonic 
Free States would choose to be known. 

General Ohrzanowski, a Pole, whose antipathy to 
Russia was frank and vehement, is reported by Mr. 
Senior, in his most interesting 'Conversations,' as 
having uttered some remarks couccming Austria 
which may enable you to understand why the Servians 
and the Bulgarians regard her as only one degree 
better than the Turk. 'Austria,' he remarketl,' ' Iiy 
occupying, in 1855, the Principahties, has siicceetletl 
in making even the Russians regretted ; nothing has 
so prepared the Moldavians and Wallachians for in- 
corporation with Russia as their experience of Aus- 
trian rule. The pressure of Russia is heavy, but 
gradual. It is a screw slowly turned. The Austrians 
are brutal and impatient ; they use not a screw, but a 
mallet ; they insult while they rob. Russia consoli- 
dates her conquests ; the subjerts of Austria are 
always impatient : always on tlic brink of insurrection.' 
Austria, no doubt, lias improved since tlien ; but 
impressions produced by centuries are stowlv cfl'aced. 

' ■S.-iiiw't Ojarenadon*, voL ii. p. 00. 

The Heirs of ' The Sick Man: 153 

Wliy cannot these Balkan States be allowed, like 
Italy, to \fare da se'? That is Eussia's policy. Why 
should it not be England's? It is, at all events, 
fortunately, Mr. Gladstone's policy. The natural 
aUiance of the future is that of Orthodox Eussia and 
Liberal England, to defend the independence and 
develope the liberties of the populations of the Balkan 

M. de Laveleyc thinks that Austria will free 

' Addresfling an enormous meeting of working men at Edinburgh on 
November 20, 1870, Mr. Qladstone said: — 'Who is to have the succes- 
hion of Turkey ? Gentlemen, from the bottom of my heart, and with 
the fullest conviction of my understanding, I will give you the reply — a 
reply which I am perfectly certain will awaken a free, generous, and 
unanimous echo iu your bosom.^. That succession b not to pass to 
Russia. It is not to pass to Austria. It is not to paKS to England, 
under whatever name of Anglo-Turkish Convention, or anything else. 
It is to pas:» to the people of these countries, to those who have inhabited 
them for many long centuiies, to those who had reared them to a state 
of civilisation when the great calamity of Ottoman conquest spread like 
a wild wave over that portion of the earth, and buried that civilisation 
under its overwhelming force. Oontleraen, I appeal to you to join me 
in the expression of the hope that under the yoke of no Power whatever 
will those free pravincci be brought. It is not llu^sia alone whose 
movements ought to be watched with vigihince. There are schemes 
abroad of which others are the authors. There is too much reason to 
suspect that some portit>n of the statesmen of Austria will endeavour to 
extend her rule, and to fulfil the evil prophecies that have been uttered, 
and cause the great change in the Balkan Peninsula to be only the sub- 
stitution of one kind of supremacy for another. Gentlemen, let us place 
the sympathies of this ( ountr}' on the side of the free. Itely upon it 
those people who inhabit those provinces have no desire to trouble their 
neighbours, no desire to vex you or me. Their desire b peacefully to 
pass their human exbtence in the discharge of their duties to God and 
man ; in the care of their families, in the enjoyment of tranquillity and 
freedom, in making happiness prevail upon the earth which has so long 
been deformed in that portion of it by misery and by shame. But we 
say, genUemen, that thb b a fair picture which b now presented to our 
eya^, and one which should not be spoiled by the hand of man. I 
demand of the authorities of thb countr}-, I demand it of our Govern- 
ment, and I believe that you will echo the demand, that to no Russian 
scheme, that to no Austrian scheme, to no Englbh «echem6 — for here we 
bring the matter home — shall they lend a moment's countenance ; but 


154 The Future o/the Eaateni Question. 

Macedonia, but Austria, with England's aid, re- 
enslaved Iklacedoma at the Congress. It would be 
. interesting to hear of any unselfish deed done by 
Austria in the whole course of her history.' It would 
encourage us to hope that Macedonia may yet owe 
her hberation to the hand of her enslaver. At pre- 
sent the Slavs of the South may be pardoned if they 
doubt whether their brethren the Czeclis have suffi- 
cient influence in Austria to prevent the exploitation 
of the Balkan Peninsula for the benefit of Jews, 
Germans, and Magyars. 

Why should you distrust those rising races of 
the East ? They are not strong as yet, neither are 
they rich ; but they contain the seeds of a prosperous 
future. Their development may be retarded by diplo- 
macy, but it cannot be prevented. Xatioualities that 
have survived the fiery furnace of Ottoman domina- 
tion will not perish because of the swaddling clothes 
of Western diplomacy. 

It is of no use pointing to the troubles of Bul- 

thfLt we shAll with a kiadl; cira cheiiab faxA tmUa the bleawd inatitutdoiu 
of free goTernment that are banning to prevail — nay, that are already 
at work ia those now emaacipated provineec' — PoUticat Sprechet, p. 92. 

Id like mauDer epoke Sir WilUam llarcourt at Oxford, January 13, 
18«0:— 'The amvDgemQDts of the Treaty of Berlin have irretnevaUy 
broken down. Minittera now pin their faith upon an Austria-Oerman 
C.'onvention. That is only a new blunder. That is to replace the old 
blunder by a new one. The conception of constituting Austria the 
tntoler of the Slav nationalities is a conception which is unworthy of 
practical statesmen, and alto^ther repugnant to liberal prindplee. 
llusxia has won the hearts of thoM provinces by making heraelf the 
patron of their independence. She leaves to Aoetria to assume the 
position of the conqueror of alien races and of a dissatisfied people.' 

' Mr. Gladstone, in March, 18"S, referred to the long cataliigue of 
Austria's misdeeds, 'scarcely relieved by a solitary act done on behalf of 
justice and of freedom.'— ' Paths of Honour and of Shame,' Sinttmtth 
Oitftuy, p. 603. 

The Heirs of ' The Sick Man: 155 

garia and Eastern EoumeUa. These troubles, and 
even worse difficulties, were expected by Eussians as 
the natural consequence of the policy of the Berlin 
C!ongress. Instead of one strong, independent Bulgaria, 
Europe insisted upon making three, and gave inde- 
pendence only to the least advance. 

You cannot say that this is an after-thought. On 
June 10, 1877, before our army had crossed the 
Danube, Prince Gortschakoff informed your Govern- 
ment that the separation of Bulgaria into two pro- 
vinces would be impracticable, as local information 
proved that Bulgaria must remain a single province, 
otherwise the most laborious and intelligent of the 
Bulgarian population would remain excluded from 
tlie autonomous institutions. 

A failure in Bulgaria and Eastern Eoumelia would 
not prove the unfitness of the Bulgarians for self- 
government. It would merely prove our Chancellor 
was right in 1877, and that the Congress was wrong 
in 1878.^ 

^ The following official communicatioiiy which I tmnalate from a 
recent number of the Mo$ecw Oatette, clears up a point on which there 
has been some misunderstanding: — 'The ministerial crisis in Bulgaria 
has evoked in the press discussions about the Bulgarian Constitution, 
in which not only foreign but even Russian papers have maintained that 
the Constitution granted to Bulgaria was the work of the Russian 
GoTemment. This is quite incorrect. According to the 4th and 5th 
clauses of the Berlin Treaty the National Assembly convoked at Timova 
had to elaborate the fundamental institutions of the principality. To 
help and quicken these works the Russian Commissary presented a pro- 
ject of a statute, simply as a foundation for further elaborations. The 
Russian Commissary declared positively that the final decision belonged 
exclusively to the National Assembly. During the discussions several 
points of this draft Constitution have been greatly modified. The Im- 
perial Government carefully avoided every intervention, only advising 
moderation, especially in regard to the liberty of the press and of the 
right of public meeting. Therefore the responsibility for the existing 

156 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

The English observers who speak most dispa- 
ragingly of the Bulgarians only know tliose north of 
the Balkans. Those who— like the late Mr. MacOahan, 
Mr. Jasper More, Dr. Sandwith, Major Baker, and Sir 
Geoi^e Campbdl — knew the Bulgarians of the South, 
always spoke of them in the very highest terms. 

Sir Gteorge Campbell, indeed, places them high 
above the Bussians, who, he says, ' can claim none of 
the elements of an Imperial race.' I admired my 
countrymen more than ever after reading this decla- 
ration of Sir Geoi^e Campbell's. It is wonderful to 
make bricks without straw ; and it is a feat no one 
else but Russians could have accomplished, to create 
and govern the largest Empire in the world without 
possessing any single element of an ' Imperial race.' 

But on one point I j^ee with the lion, member 
for Kirkcaldy. The Bulgarians are really a verj' 
superior race. I well remember that General 
Tchemayeff, who is as patriotic a Russian as he is 
a devoted friend of the Soiitheni Slavs, declared to 
me, on his return from a tour in tlie Balkans, 
'Believe me, these Bulgarians are a capital people. 
Give them ten years of good government, they'll 
astonish every one by their progress.' 

Similar testimony, not less emphatic, has lx?en 

given by your Consuls. Tell me, if we ])oor Russians, 

who, ' without any of the elements of an Imperial 

race,' liave contrived to build up tlic greatest Empire 

the world ever saw, why can you not believe tliat 

innitatioiu rests eotirelj- on the Tiniova .\«8eaibly. The niodificatioiu 
rUeh exjMtieace AdTisei ftre not in the leut oppowd to the riewa of the 
inperial Government, whose chief ohject is th« cooaolidation Mid wel- 
hn of the FriacipftUtj.' 

The Heirs of ' The Sick Man: 157 

these richly gifted Bulgarians, if freed from the inter • 
meddling of the Turks of Constantinople and of the 
Turks of diplomacy, will at least be able to manage 
theii* own affairs ? 

I shall be told that the rival races of the Balkan 
Peninsula hate each other almost as much, to j udge from 
EngUsh descriptions, as the Neapolitans used to hate 
the Piedmontese, in the descriptions of those who ad- 
vocated the maintenance of Austria's influence in Italy. 

There are differences, no doubt.^ Boundary lines 

* The differeDce between the Bulgarian Elxarch and the Patriarch of 
Constantinople is now happily in a way to be healed. The separation of the 
Bulgarian Ghurch from the Patriarchate was purely administrativey and 
exclusively temporal. There are no differences as to dogma or purely 
spiritual matters, and the Bulgarian Church occupies the same position to 
the Patriarchate as the Churches of Russia, Servia, and Wallachia. The 
quarrel about the Church of Sveta Petka in Philippopolis would never 
liave arisen but for the differences between the Patriarch and the Exarch. 
The Church of Sveta Petka was built by the Bulgarian Youlco Th^odo- 
roritch, at a cost of 50,713 piastres ; 43,013 were subscribed by Bulgarians, 
Rud only 1 ,700 by Greeks. Its title deeds declare it to be communal 
property, and to be controlled and maintained by the elected representa- 
tives of the commune. In that commune 250 out of 305 families are 
Bulgarians of the Bulgarian Church ; fifty are Bulgarians who side with 
the Patriarch, and only five are Greek. When the independence of the 
Bulgarian Church was recognised by the Sultan's decree in 1872, the 
Bulgarians were allowed to hold all their churches wherever they pos- 
sessed a majority. Whenever Bulgarian apathy permitted it, the in- 
fluence of the Patriarch was exerted to prevent the churches passing out 
of his juiisdiction. In this way the Church of Sveta Petka, and another 
called Sveta N^^lia remained in the hands of the Greeks. The other 
day the Bulgarians forcibly possessed themselves of the former church, 
maintaining that by its origin, by its title deeds, by the majority of the 
commune, and by the firman of 1872, it belonged to them, and ought to 
be under the jurisdiction, not of the Patriarch, but of the Exarch. Dis- 
turbances ensued, and Prince Vogarides locked up the church and sent 
the case for trial. So much has been made of this dispute to the preju- 
dice of the Bulgarians, that it may be useful briefly to state these fiM^ts, 
and to point out that the quarrel arose, not so much out of a rivalry 
of race, as from an ecclesiastic difference, which shortly wiU be removed. 
A full account of the Sveta Petka will be found in the ably conducted 
organ of the Southern Bulgarians, the Marttza, February 5, 1880. 


1 58 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

would have to be traced, and many other things 
would have to be done. But all these are mere trifles. 
The peril of the Eastern Question does not lie in the 
, antipathies of local populations, but in the rivalries of 
mighty Empires. 

If the Powers honestly forswear individual 
aggrandisement, a settlement of these topographical 
details-would be easy. The principle ofthe Treaty of 
San 8tefano, that the frontiers should be settled after 
local examination on the spot, in accordance witli 
ethnographical facts, would suffice to settle these 
small questions.' 

You will object that in some districts the popu- 
lation is too inextricably mixed up for division on 
ethnographical principles. Well, it may be so. In 
that case the obvious arrangement would be to adopt 
the Eastern Roumelian expedient, ivithout the inter- 
vention of the Sultan. Eastern Houmcha is Bulgaria.'' 
So is a large — possibly the largest — part of Mace- 

' Article VI. of the Treaty of San Stefano ruoa ao follows: — 
' Bulgaria ia coiutitnt«d an autonomous tributary Principality, with a 
ChristiaD OoTernment and a national niilitia. The definitivo frontiers of 
the Bulgarian Prindpalitj will he laid down by a special RuMO-Turidah 
(^omnuB^on before the evacoatioQ of Roumelia by the Imperial Rusniaa 
army. This CommiMion will take into its consideration, when conndei^ 
ing on the spot tbe modifications to be made in the general map, the prin' 
ciple of the natioBality of the majority' of the inhalutants of the districts, 
conformably to tbe Iteaes of Peace, and also the topographical necessities 
and practical interests of traffic of the local population. Tbe extent of 
tbe Bulgarian Principality u marked in general terms on the accompanying 
nap, which will serre as a basis for the deflnitive Biing of the limits.' 

' The overwhelming numerical prepooderance of the Bulgariau popu- 
lation in Eastern Houmelia, is proved by tbe result of the elections for 
the first I'roTincial Assemhly which were held in autumn 1879, under 
tbe proviitious of tbe Organic Statute drawn up by tbe International 
Commission. The Bulgarian deputies outnumbered those of all other 
nationnliliea by nearly six to one. Tbe Greeks only elected four mem- 
berf, tbe Turks fhrte, and the Jews and Armenians two each. 

The Heirs of ' The Sick Man: 159 

donia. This view was supported by Lord Salisbury 
and his diplomatic colleagues at the Constantinople 
Conference.^ But outside the Umits of the Bulgaria 
of the Constantinople Conference there may be a re- 
gion, stretching from Adrianople to beyond Salonica, 
including the south of Macedonia and the extreme 
north of Epirus and Thessaly, not sufficiently Hellenic 
to be annexed to Greece, or Bulgarian to be annexed 
to Bulgaria, which might be governed on the plan, 
wliich is little better than a vexatious absurdity 
when applied to the sub-Balkan districts of Bulgaria. 

In time the races would amalgamate, or one 
would acquire sufficient ascendancy to decide the 
destinies of these narrow strips of border land, 
through which, of course, both Servia and Bulgaria 
should have access to the -^ean — Servia by an 
international railway to Salonica, and Bulgaria by a 
port at Enos, at the mouth of the Maritza.* 

Albania is tolerably autonomous already; but 
Greece should receive Epirus, Thessaly, Crete, and 
the Hellenic Islands, which may, perhaps, include 
Cyprus, when you get tired of it. 

The rightful heirs of the Sick Man are his long 
oppressed subjects. 

There remains the Last Word of the Eastern 
Question — Who is to have Constantinople ? 

1 See Map, p. 120. 

^ OpinionB differ as to the most suitable port for Bulgaria. The 
Treaty of San Stefano suggested Kavalla; others have pointed to 
Salonica, which, however, b more likely to become a free town, a neutral 
sea-port. The advantages of Enos over both are obvious, as being at the 
mouth of the Maritza, the chief river of Southern Bulgaria. They were 
very forcibly pointed out by the late Mr. MacGahan, in one of the last let- 
ters which tiiat indefatigable and well-infbnned oorxespondent ever wrote. 

160 The Future of the Eastern Question. 



* The last word of the Eastern Question/ said Lord 
Derby, ' is — Who is to have Constantinople ? ' 

Lord Derby raay be right ; but it seems, after all, 
that the importance of Constantinople has been 
strangely, even ridiculously, exaggerated. The pojm- 
lar conception of the city as a kind of talisman o\ 
Empire is really as absurd as the other superstitions 
about talismans which flourished in the age from 
which the superstition about Constantinople is a 
somewhat grotesque revival. 

Constantinople has long since ceased to play the 
most important part in the history of the world. The 
idea of its importance dates from the time when 
civiUsation and commerce were almost confined to 
the shores of the Mediterranean. When Constan- 
tinople acquii-ed its domination over the imagination 
of men one-half of the capitals of modern Europe 
did not exist ; and, with the exception of Rome, 
none of those which had begun to live coidd venture 
to rival the position of the city of Constantine. All 
that is changed. Alike in commerce and in war, in 

The Last Word of the Eastern Question' 161 

science and in religion, the world's centre is no longer 
on the Bosphorus. 

A company of London merchants have created at 
the other side of Asia an Empire more splendid than 
that of Amurath ; and our Peter the Great reared on 
the icebound shores of the Northern Seas a capital 
whose monarchs dictate the terms on which the 
rulers of Constantinople are permitted to hold their 

The whole world has been transformed since our 
ancestors, crusading with the Lion-heart or conquer- 
ing with Sviatoslaf, learned to regard Constantinople 
as the natural seat of universal Empire. 

Constantinople is no longer even the commercial 
emporium of the world, standing midway between 
two continents, and essential to both. Since the days 
of Constantine, an Englishman, a Portuguese, and a 
Frenchman have changed everything. Constantinople 
resembles a seaport from which the ocean has re- 
ceded, for the Steam Engine, the Cape route, and the 
Suez Canal have dried up the ancient channels of 
trade between Asia and Europe. The road to the 
Indies no longer runs through the Bosphorus, and 
the commercial glories of Constantinople are now 
almost as faded as those of Trebizonde. 

* The Empire of the world ' is so far from be- 
longing to the owners of Constantinople, that even 
the appointment of their oflScials is dictated to them 
by telegrams from London, emphasised by ironclads 
at Malta. Stripped of this romantic halo of super- 
stition and exaggeration, what is Constantinople ? 


162 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

Constantinople is a city commanding the narrow 
straits by which alone the dwellers on the shores of 
the Black Sea and the vast populations on the rivers 
draining into that ocean can gain access to the Medi- 
teiTanean. To Bussia, Austria, Hungary, Boumania, 
and the Balkan States, the ownership of Constanti- 
nople can never be the matter of indifference which 
it might be to the other European States. Con- 
stantinople is the gate of the Euxine, and the 
question. Who shall keep its keys ? is of vital interest 
only to Euxine and Danubian States, and therefore 
primarily to Eussia. 

Commercially the ownership of Constantinople, 
as commanding the Bosphorus, which has been 
described as the real mouth of the Danube, is almost 
as important to Austria as to Russia. PoUticaUy, 
however, it is of more importance to Russia. Austria 
has no seaboard on the Black Sea ; no ironclads can 
threaten her from the Euxine, while the Russian 
seaboard Ues open to every attack. It is, therefore, 
doubly important for us that the keys of the Black 
Sea should be in the hands of — if not of a friendly 
Power — then of a Power too weak to be a menace to 
the safety of our ports or the security of our com- 

From a commercial and poUtical point of view, 
the Sultan is as good a gatekeeper of the Euxine 
as Russia could wish to have. As Emperor Nicholas 
told Sir Hamilton Seymour, * Nothing better for our 
interests could be desired.' In former times the 
Sultan closed the Black Sea to all the commerce 

' The Last Word of the Eastern Question: 163 

of the world, and menaced Europe with conquest. 
Eussia has effectively opened the Black Sea to trade, 
and at the present day Eussia could not possibly 
have a more submissive doorkeeper than her helpless 
debtor, the Sultan, although if he has a fault it is 
that he is a little too weak to uphold his treaty 
rights against the encroachments of England. 

In CJonstantinople, under the eye of the Am- 
bassadors, the Sultan cannot do much harm, and he 
need not have more than a 'cabbage garden in 
Europe.' This arrangement is practicable enough. 
It was nearly a century after the Turks made 
Adrianople the capital of their European dominions, 
that they succeeded in taking Constantinople, which 
from 1361 to 1453 preserved its independence. 

Eussia has repeatedly approached Constantinople. 
She has never entered it. The only entrance with which 
we have been credited was due to English ignorance 
of the French language. While the discussion of Mr. 
Forster's amendment in the House of Commons hostile 
to the six millions war vote was proceeding. Count 
Schouvaloff, talking to a lady at an evening party in 
London, observed in passing, ' Oh, mon Dieu ! quant 
k Constantinople, nous sommes dedans,' a colloquial 
French expression meaning, * We have been taken 
in or deceived.' It passed from mouth to mouth, 
and was construed as a positive announcement by the 
Eussian Ambassador that our army had entered 
Constantinople ! 

Next morning several London papers appeared 
with excited articles, commencing, ' Nous sommes 

M 2 


— »■ *■ » 1* ■--■'—!- i.- 

164 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

dedans ! The Bussians are in Constantinople — such 
was the categorical declaration of Count Schouvaloff, 
the Russian Ambassador!' and then followed the 
usual inflammatory nonsense concerning Russian 
* perfidy' and Muscovite Agreed,' of which the 
London press always keeps so large a quantity in 
stock, and whilst Count Schouvaloff, with diflSculty 
preserving his gravity, was endeavouring to explain 
French phrases to English Ministers, Sir A. Layard's 
misleading tel^rams about the alleged advance of 
Russian troops on Constantinople, seemed to the 
masses to confirm the English interpretation of * Nous 
sommes dedans,' and, in the explosion of excitement 
which followed, Mr. Forster's amendment was with- 

That, however, was the only Russian entry into 
Constantinople recorded in history. In 1829 a 
Council of the Empire decided that as no arrangement 
could be more advantageous to Russia than the 
maintenance of the Sultan in Constantinople, he 
should be left on his throne. Russia, in 1833, and 
again in 1840, interfered to save the Sultan from 
destruction, and it is possible events may again call 
for her intervention against another foe. It was said 
to be * against the well understood interests of the 
Russian Empire ' that Turkey should be destroyed. 

I was told the other day that a beUef prevails in 
high official quarters among the Turks that the 
EngUsh Government intended to invite Austria to 
occupy Constantinople when the collapse comes. 
Lord Sahsbury's ' sentinel of the gate ' is to be 

' The Last Word of the Eastern Question.' 165 

placed in possession of the city, and the Government 
of Vienna and Pesth is to hold the keys of the Black 

It is well to be plain spoken. Unless one admits 
that Austrian statesmen have altogether taken leave 
of their wits, one should acquit them of any desire to 
reign on the Bosphorus. Is it not only to Lord 
SaUsbury that we should say, 'Pas trop de zele; 
surtout pas trop de zhle ? Poor ' Austrians ' have sins 
enough on their conscience without our adding to 
them all that the English Minister can meditate for 
them to perpetrate. But should a design like this 
really be contemplated, it could evidently be executed 
only by war. Bussia could not humbly submit to 
see the key of the Black Sea conferred upon a rival 
Power without her becoming the laughing-stock of 
the whole world. * England understands,' said Count 
Nesselrode in 1853 — ^what Austria understands to-day 
— *that Bussia cannot suffer the estabUshment at 
Constantinople of a Christian Power sufficiently 
strong to control or disquiet her. The Emperor 
disclaimed any wish or design of estabUshing himself 
there, but he has determined not to allow either tho 
English or the French to establish themselves there.* 
In those days an Austrian occupation of Con- 
stantinople was too absurd even to be talked of. 
Bussia desires to see at Constantinople wiat your 
Ministers pretended to desire to see at Cabul — a strong, 
a friendly, and an independent Power. There is, how- 
ever, this difference ; that for you such a state of 
affairs was a superfluous luxury, whilst to us it would 
be an impera,tive necessity. 

166 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

It is the invetei*ate superstition of Bussophobists 
that we desire to annex Constantinople. Our history 
does not justify the suspicion. But it is quite true 
that Constantinople occupies such a place in the 
Bussian imagination that, questions of self-preserva- 
tion apart, no Bussian Emperor could tolerate the 
Austrians on the Bosphorus. 

The Italian Peninsula until twenty years ago was 
the amphitheatre in which France and Austria 
struggled for ascendancy. Austria represented the 
power of the conqueror. France fostered the national 
idea. The interest of the Exuropean drama has been 
shifted eastward. The Balkan Peninsula takes the 
place of that of Italy. Austria again represents 
foreign conquest ; but the representative of nationality 
and independence is no longer France, but Bussia — 
* a Power,' as was observed the other day by a very 
intelligent diplomatist, ' which never gave up in the 
course of all this century any step which she thought 
it her duty to pursue, though she sometimes con- 
sented to intervals of halt.' In both peninsulas the 
Imperial city exercises a strange fascination. To save 
the Eternal City from falling into the hands of Austria, 
the French Eepublicans stifled in blood the Bepublic 
of Rome. Said M. Thiers, * You can scarcely estimate 
the importance we attach to Eome. As the throne 
of CathoUcism, as the centre of Art, as having been 
long the second city of the French Empire, it fills in 
our minds almost as great a space as Paris. To know 
that the Austrian flag was flying over the Castle of 
St. Angelo is a humiliation under which no French- 

' The Last Word of the Eastern Question: 167 

man could bear to exist ; and,' then exclaimed the 
impetuous Frenchman, ^ rather than see the Austrian 
eagle on the flagstaff that rises above the Tiber, I 
would destroy a hundred Constitutions and a hundred 

If the thought of Bome falling into the hands of 
Catholic Austria excited such passions in the heart 
of Catholic and Voltairean France, can you wonder if 
the thought of Catholic Austria in possession of St. 
Sophia kindles feelings of ungovernable indignation in 
the minds of Orthodox Bussia P Constantinople fills 
an even greater space in our imagination than Borne 
in that of the Frenchman. Our religion is Byzantine, 
our laws, our Constitution, our architecture have all 
more or less been influenced by Byzantium. 

Bussia may endure the status quo. She has cer- 
tainly no desire to possess Constantinople. But she 
never coidd consent to Constantinople passing either 
to Catholic Austria or Protestant England. 

Bussia's relations to Constantinople take their rise 
in the heroic ages of her history ; nor shoidd Bussians 
hesitate to admit that they began in a series of 
attempts on the part of our early rulers to possess 
themselves of Constantinople — that is, of Tzargrad, 
or * King of Cities,' as it was then popularly described 
in Bussia. 

No fewer than five several times in the course of 
two centuries Bussia attempted to conquer Tzargrad, 
and this, no doubt, is sufficient to convince our 

^ Oonversations with M» Thiers, M, Guizot, and other ditHngwihed 
PenonSf Nassau Wt Seniori toL i. pp. 53, 61. 


168 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

enemies that we are animated by a never-dying desire 
to possess Constantinople. The argument, I confess, 
seems to me somewhat weak. 

The attempt to conquer the East at the dawn of 
the Middle Ages was almost exclusively Scandinavian. 
Whether it was directed from the North-East or the 
North-West of Europe, the restless valour of the Norse 
Vikings impelled aUkeall the Russian expeditions under 
our Variag^ Princes against Constantinople and the Cru- 
sades of the Western monarchs. Oleg was no more a 
Russian than Richard was an Englishman. The im- 
pidse which drove the Franks to plant their standard 
on the walls of Jerusalem, although to a large extent 
religious, was greatly due to the same fierce Norman 
fever for conquest which drove Sviatoslaf to capture 
the city of PhiUppopolis and Oleg to hang his shield 
on the Golden Door at Byzantium. If these early 
Variag expeditions of ours in the tenth century 
against Constantinople prove that Russia to-day desires 
to seize the city of the Sultans, much more does the 
conquering of Constantinople in the twelfth century 
by the Crusaders from the West prove that Tzargrad 
is in danger from the descendants of those who made 
the Third Crusade. 

The first attack was made by Askold and Dir, 
who, true to their Viking instincts, conducted a naval 
expedition against Byzantium. They perished, witli 
their two hundred vessels, in a tempest. 

The second attack was more successful. Oleg, in 
907, with 2,000 vessels, invested Tzargrad by land, 

' In EogUsh usually called * Varangian.' 

' The Last Word of the Eastern Question.' 169 

and dictated terms of peace at the gates of the city. 
An indemnity was exacted from the Greek Emperor, 
a commercial treaty was signed, and Oleg suspended 
his shield from the Golden Door. His successor, Igor, 
was less fortunate. His flotilla was destroyed by Greek 
fire in his first attempt, but in 944 the menace of a 
second invasion induced the rulers of Byzantium to 
pay an indemnity and sign a new commercial treaty. 
The most memorable war of early Russia against the 
Lower Empire was that which resulted in the annihi- 
lation of the army of Sviatoslaf by the forces of John 
Zimisces. The origin of the war was curious. The 
Byzantine Emperor, finding himself in danger from 
Bulgaria, then an independent kingdom under its own 
Tzars, called on the Russians to defend his capital 
against the nationality on whose behalf Russia fought 
her war of 1877-8. Sviatoslaf, with an army of 
60,000 men, subsidised by Byzantium, crushed the 
resistance of the Bulgarians, captured their capital 
and all their fortresses, and practically annexed their 
country. John Zimisces demanded its evacuation. 
Sviatoslaf replied by threatening Constantinople. 
War ensued between the late allies, and after display- 
ing marvellous bravery at Silistria the Russians were 
completely defeated, and the remains of their heroic 
army evacuated the Balkan. This was in 972. Seventy 
years afterwards, Yaroslaf the Great, the Charlemagne 
of Russia, sent an expedition against the Greek Empire, 
which met a disastrous fate. The stormy Euxine, 
Greek fire, and the sword of Monomachus destroyed 
it to the last man. Only 800 Russians, blinded by 

170 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

their captors, survived as prisoners in Byzantium. 
Seven centuries had to pass away before a Bussian 
army again encamped in the Balkan Peninsula. It 
was not until 1772 that Bussians again crossed the 
Danube, and the war which was ended by the Treaty 
of Eainardji certainly did not aim at the conquest of 

The only war which Bussia entered upon with the 
design of changing the ownership of Constantinople 
was that which sprang from * the Greek project,' ar- 
ranged between Catherine the Great and Joseph EL., 
and which was begun by the Turks in 1787. But 
although it was agreed by Austria and Bussia to place 
Constantine, the second son of Paul I., on the vacant 
throne of Tzargrad, it was expressly declared that 
Constantinople should not be annexed to Bussia. 

This arrangement was a strange one, and under 
present circumstances it may be interesting to repro- 
duce it, as it proves that, in the eighteenth as in the 
nineteenth century, Austria's appetite for the inheri- 
tance of the Sick Man was far greater than that of 

Austria was to have Servia, Bosnia, and the Her- 
zegovina, as well as Dalmatia, which then belonged 
to Venice, recouping the Venetians for Dalmatia by 
ceding them the Morea, Candia, and Cyprus. Bussia 
was only to have Otchakoff, the strip of land between 
the Bug and the Dnieper, and one or two islands of 
the Archipelago. K the war were crowned with such 
success that the Turks were expelled from Constanti- 
nople, the Greek Empire was to be re-established in 

* The Last Word of the Eastern Cation' 171 

complete independence, the throne of Byzantium to 
be filled by the Grand Duke Constantine Pavlovitch, 
who was to renounce all claims to the throne of 
Bussia, so that the two kingdoms might never be 
united under the same sceptre.^ 

When the ambitious schemes of Catherine are 
referred to as proving the desperate determination of 
Bussia to annex Constantinople, it is well to remember 
that that monarch laid it down as an imperative 
direction for the policy of Bussia that Constantinople 
and Moscow should never be united under the same 

The war did not prosper as was expected. Poland j 
was partitioned instead of Turkey, and Russia con- 
tented herself with Otchakoff. 

During the Napoleonic wars, Alexander I. sub- 
mitted to England a scheme for the partition of the 
Ottoman Empire, in case of its existence becoming in- 
compatible with the present state of Europe. England 
was not cordial, but she concluded a treaty of sub- 
sidies with the Emperor against Napoleon. A few 
years afterwards, when Napoleon and Alexander met 
at Tilsit, there occurs the only occasion in history in 
which a Bussian Emperor expressed a wish to secure 
possession of Constantinople. Napoleon declares that 
Alexander urged strongly a claim to Constantinople, 
but that he refused to hear of it. The arrangement 
that was arrived at provided that Bussia and France 
should * come to an understanding to withdraw all 
the Ottoman provinces in Europe — Constantinople 

^ Rambaud'fl Hidory o/Muuia, toL ii. p. 160. 


172 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

and Eoumelia excepted — ^from the yoke and tyranny 
of the Turks/ That desirable consummation even 
now is not yet completed, although the Treaty of 
Berlin, in this respect, does not fall far short of the 
provisions of the Treaty of Tilsit. 

Since that time our Emperors have not only per- 
sistently repudiated any intention to annex Constanti- 
nople, but they have as consistently refused to take 
any step to deprive the Sultan of his capital. 

In 1829, when our armies were at Adrianople, it 
was decided that it would be detrimental to Bussia's 
interests to overthrow the Government of the Sultan 
on the Bosphorus, but if such a contingency could not 
be averted they proposed that Constantinople should 
be made a free city. 

The contingency did not arise, and the city re- 
mained in the hands of the Sultan, to the regret even 
of Conservative Englishmen. * There is no doubt,' 
said the Duke of Wellington, * that it would have been 
more fortunate, and l)etter for the world, if the Treaty 
of Adrianople had not been signed, and if the Eussians 
had entered Constantinople, and if the Turkish Empire 
had been dissolved.'^ Lord Holland was even more 
outspoken. In the session of 1830, in his place in 
Parliament he exclaimed, * As a citizen of the world, 
I am sorry that the Eussians have not taken Constan- 

In 1833, when the success of Mehemet Ali threat- 
ened the Ottoman Empire with sudden dissolution, a 
Eussian army occupied Constantinople for the defence 

* Wellington Despatches f vol. vi. p. 219. 
' Thirty Years of Foreign Policy, p. 116. 

' The Last Word of the Eastern Question: 173 

of the Sultan against his rebellious vassal. Lord 
Palmerston, in the debate on the presence of Eussians 
at Constantinople, to which the English Government 
had consented, said ; — * I very much doubt whether 
the Eussian nation would be prepared to see that 
transference of power, of residence, and of authority 
to the southern provinces which would be the neces- 
sary consequence of the conquest by Eussia of Con- 
stantinople; and if we have quietly beheld the 
temporary occupation of the Turkish capital by the 
forces of Eussia it is because we have full confidence 
in the honour and good faith of Eussia, and believe 
that those troops will be withdrawn in a very short 
time. ' ^ Lord Palmerston was j ustified in his confidence, 
and our troops were withdrawn when the capital was 
out of danger. 

K only a similar just confidence had been displayed 
in 1878 Europe would not have been brought to the 
verge of a gigantic war. 

In the Crimean War I only need to refer to Mr. 
Kinglake's authority to prove that * it would be wrong 
to believe' that when the steps were taken which 
brought about the war * Eussia was acting in further- 
ance of territorial aggrandisement,' much less from a 
design to annex Constantinople. 

Li 3876, and still more signally in 1878, Eussia 
remained true to her traditional policy. The words 
of our Emperor to Lord Augustus Loftus, at Livadia, 
may here be given as the latest authoritative expres- 
sion of Eussia's will on this subject. 

' Sir Tollemache Sinclair's Defence of Rumoy p. 6. 

174 The Future of the Eastern Qtieetion. 

The Emperor said he had not the smallest wish or 
intention to be possessed of Constantinople. ' All that 
had been said or written about a will of Peter the 
Great and the aims of Catherine II. were ilhisions 
and ])hantoms, and never existed in reaUty ; and he 
considered that the acquisition of Constantinople 
would be a misfortune for Bussia. There was no 
question of it, nor had it ever been entertained by his 
late father, who had given a proof of it in 1828 when 
his victorious army was within four days' march of the 
Turkish capital. . . . His Majesty pledged his sacred 
word of honour, in the most earnest and solemn man- 
ner, that he had no intention of acquiring Constanti- 

'His Majesty here reverted to the proposal 
addressed to Her Majesty's Government for the occu- 
pation of Bosnia by Austria, of Bulgaria by Bussia, 
and of a naval demonstration at Constantinople, where, 
he said. Her Majesty's fleet would have been the 
dominant power. This, His Majesty thought, ought 
to be a suflScient proof that Bussia entertained no 
intention of occupjring that capital. 

* His Majesty could not understand why there 
should not be a perfect understanding between Eng- 
land and Bussia— an understanding based on a poUcy 
of peace — which would be equally beneficial to their 
mutual interests and those of Europe at large. 

' '* Intentions," said His Majesty, " are attributed to 
Bussia of a future conquest of India and of the posses- 
sion of Constantinople. Can anything be more absurd ? 
With regard to the former it is a perfect impossibility ; 

* The Last Word of the Eastern QtcestionJ 175 

and as regards the latter I repeat again the most 
solemti assurances that I entertain neither the wish nor 
the intention."'^ 

Not less categorical was the more formal declara- 
tion of the Eussian Government. Prince Gortschakoff, 
on May 18, 1877, defined the position of Eussia 
towards that city. He wrote : — ' As far as concerns 
Constantinople . . . the Imperial Cabinet repeats 
that the acquisition of that capital is excluded from 
the views of His Majesty the Emperor. They recog- 
nise tHat in any case the future of Constantinople is a 
question of common interest, which cannot be settled 
otherwise than by a general understanding, and that 
if the possession of the city were to be put in question, 
it could not be allowed to belong to any of the Great 

The Treaty of San Stefano — signed when Turkey 
was absolutely in Eussia's power — proved that Eussia 
had no intention of dispossessing the Sultan of Stam- 
boul ; and it is probable that * the well understood 
interests of the Eussian Empire ' are still believed to 
require the maintenance of his authority as custodian 
of the Straits. 

Constantinople, though it possesses great religious 
and historical attractions to Eussians, has not that 
exaggerated importance in our eyes that is held in the 
minds of both English and Turkish statesmen. Mr. 
Gladstone, at St. James's Hall, and again at Midlothian, 
declared that if England had been in Eussia's place 
* she would have eaten up Turkey long ago.' Fuad 

1 Blue Book, Turkey 1 (1877), p. 648. 

176 The Future of the Eastern Question. 

Pasha, in that political testament which affords so 
singular an illustration of a statesmanlike perception 
on the part of a Turkish Minister, declares, * If I had 
been myself a Russian Minister I would have over- 
turned the world to have conquered Constantinople.'^ 
Eussian Ministers do not share the idea of Fuad 
Pasha, that the possession of Constantinople is worth 
the overturn of the world. If we transferred our 
capital to the Bosphorus, Constantinople would be the 
Achilles' heel of the Russian Empire. 

I was discussing this subject a short time since 
with a briUiant Frenchman. * I do not see,' he re- 
marked, half jokingly, half seriously, * why Russia 
should not have Constantinople. I desire nothing so 
much as to see you there.' * But,' I remonstrated, 

* we do not share your desire. The day we estab- 
Kshed ourselves on the Bosphorus our decline would 
begin.' * Certainly,' rejoined my sarcastic friend ; 

* and that is precisely why I wished to see you 
there ! ' ^ 

' Farley 8 Turks and Christians^ Appendix III. p. 239. 

' Emperor Nicholas told Sir Hamilton Seymour : ' If an Emperor of 
Russia phould one day chance to conquer Oonstantinople, or should find 
himself forced to occupy it permanenUy and fortify it with a yiew to 
making it impregnable, from that day would date the decline of Russia. 
... If once the Tsar were to take up his abode at Constantinople, 
Russia would cease to be Russian. No Russian would like that' Even 
Mr. Gowen, M.P., in his lucid interval recognised this truth. 
Coming from such a Russophobist, the following remarks are perhaps of 
some litUe interest, 'Many intelligent Russians/ said Mr. Cowen — 
speaking at Blaydon on September 30, 1876 — * entertain strong objections 
to the extension of the Russian rule to Constantinople. And for this 
Tery sensible reason. . . . The Rusrians, whose number is considerable, 
and I believe increasing, ai*e of opinion that it would be unwise to 
remove the capital of Russia from Petersburg to Constantinople. On 
these grounds, then, I dismisa this question of Russian extension as 

* The Last Word of the Eastern Question.* 177 

K, however, sudden collapse should occur, and the 
ownership of Constantinople should come up for 
settlement, it seems to me that there are, perhaps, 
only two solutions which Bussia can even so much as 

The first is the conversion of Constantinople into / 
a free city under the guarantee of Europe, governed ^■ 
by an International Commission. To this there is the 
grave objection that Constantinople carries with it 
the sovereignty of Asia Minor, which can hardly be 
vested in either an International Commission or in the 
civic authorities of a single city. 

Tlie other solution is the establishment under the / 
tutelage and guarantee of Europe of a European 
Prince, a persona grata to all the Powers as Sovereign 
of Byzantium and Asia Minor. 

Time is not yet ripe for making Constantinople 
the seat of a Balkan Confederation. It would be 
absurd and dangerous to entrust it to Greece, and 
the veto of Bussia is recorded in advance against any 
scheme of placing Constantinople in the hands of any 
of the Powers. 

Our position is clear and unambiguous. If Eng- 
land is equally free from all arrihes pensies as to the 
last word of the Eastern Question, why should we not 
come to a perfect understanding on the subject based 
on * a policy of peace which would be equally bene- 
ficial to our mutual interests and to those of Europe 
at large ' ? 

unworthy of condderation. The fear of Russian aggresaon is an 
exploded illasion.' 









y i> 




Alas ! poor Russians ! we seem to have no chance, 
no chance whatever, of obtaming justice among the 
English in England. No sooner do we flatter our- 
selves that at last we have met with a friend — ^with 
at least one person who has the wisdom to question 
the truth of accusations brought against us without 
positive evidence, and to refuse to regard separate 
cases as general absolute truths — than a rude rebuff* 
recalls us to reahty, and an act of pure unmistakable 
hostUity dissipates in a moment the pleasing illusion 
that at last we had found an unprejudiced judge. 

Fear can surely have no share in the production 
of so persistent an animosity ! The menace to your 
Indian realm exists only in the imagination of those 
who fancy that it is but a stone's throw from the 
banks of the Oxus to the southern slopes of the 
Himalayas. In Russia we cannot understand why 
Eughshmen should permit a dread of Russian power 
to colour all the speeches of your Conservative poh- 
ticians, and to bias the poUcy of your Ministry. We 
know too much of the power of England to accept 
such a compliment as quite serious. We see that 

182 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

England annexes new territories every year with a 
facility which betrays to foreigners Uttle evidence of 
reluctance on her part to extend the boundaries of 
her Empire. We know that she is all-powerful at 
sea, and her financial position is first-class. Eussia, 
on the other hand, is not wealthy. She is only 
morally rich, which, according to old-fashioned Eus- 
sian views, is not altogether to be despised. But that 
moral wealth can neither threaten India nor annex 
Great Britain. Why, then, this irrational panic, 
which haunts the imagination of what used to be the 
most self-confident, self-reliant, and fearless race in 
the world ? If I were an EngUshman I should blush 
for shame if I entertained this coward fear of any 
Power on earth. 

It is impossible to beUeve that fears so groundless 
can really occasion all the hostihty Avith which my 
country is regarded by many EngUshmen. K it is not 
fear, to what unknown source, then, can we trace the 
origin of Eussophobia ? To poor, simple-minded 
Eussians it seems hopeless to undertake such an in- 
quiry. One involuntarily recalls Hamlet's remark, 
'There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, 
than are dreamt of in your philosophy.' But per- 
haps I may be pardoned if I suggest that ignorance, 
pure, sheer, downright ignorance,' has not a little to 
do with it.' 

' The Stategmtm of December 13, 1879, referring to ibis preyailing 
ignorance says : — ' A few years ago, Father Coleridge earnestly warned us 
in The Month that the Engliah temper towards Ku^sia was such that we 
were ready to attribute to her machinations the very phyrical disturbanoes 
of the earth . If Mount Etna breaks into eruption, the temper of our news- 

Some English Prejudices. 183 

Let me give an instance of this ignorance in 
places where it might least be expected to exist. The 
other day a friend mentioned, in the course of conver- 
sation, that your gi^eat English poet, Mr. Tennyson, 
hated Eussia. 

* Indeed,' said I ; * that is most unfortunate. But 
can you tell me why ? ' 

* Oh,' was the response, * we English people, you 
know, cannot tolerate your knout system ! ' 

* How good of you ! " I exclaimed ; * upon this 
we perfectly agree. But tell me, why should your 
Laureate Uve only in the past and take no notice of 
the present ? Poets are not confined to the contem- 
plation of the past ; the future itself is sometimes dis- 
closed to their ken/ 

With a puzzled look and hesitating accent, he 

papers is such that they are ready at once to ascribe it to KuAfdan agency 
at the bottom of the crater. We tell our countrymen, almost with 
passionate camestnesA, that while they permit themselves to be deluded 
as they are, by German, Majryar, and Jewish hatred of Russia, there i^ 
no hope of wise and noble guidance of the foreign policy of the nation. 
The metropolitan press poiu^ forth an incessant stream of the wildest 
delusions concerning the great and simple-minded people whom it is our 
misfortune to have made our enemies by the abuse and calumnies we 
have poured upon them for years. It is most unworthy and most guilty ; 
and untU the English people are enlightened enough to judge of Russia 
for themselves, instead of looking at her through the spectacles of 
German Jews, Magyar patriots, and Romish priests, they viriU never 
understand what Russia really is.' And again, on January 3^ the Staie»- 
man says : — ' These Continental scribblers have made the masses of our 
countrymen insane about Russia. . . . Russia and America are marked out, 
by every fact of their being, as the two natural allies of this country in 
the great work of regenerating Asia. Neither Tory statesmen nor 
publicists wiU permit the nation to cherish any other feelings than those 
of hostility and jealousy towards both. . . . Russia is at this moment our 
natural ally, and it is nothing but our own evil temper as a people 
towards her that prevents our discerning it. But the guilt of it is not 
the people*s— it is the publicists*. 

184 I^avmderatandtngs and Pr^udices. 

observed, 'But you do not mean to say that the 
knout is a thing of the past, not of the present ? ' 

'That is exactly what Ido mean to say,' I answered. 
' If I wish to stick to facts I can say nothing else. 
The knout has ceased to exbt in Russia — even in 
the navy,' I added, ' which perhaps is also the case 
with the cat-o'-nine-tails in the navy of England I Is 
it not so ? ' 

Without answering my question, my fiiend said, 
* Since when ? ' 

' Shortly after the emancipation of the serfs,' said 
I. * Kussia is a long way off; but is seventeen years 
not long enough for such a reform to reach the ears 
of England's Laureate ? ' 

We may be * barbarians,' but our criminal code, 
judged by the standard of the Howard Association, 
is more humane than that of at least one other nation, 
which retains the lash in the army and navy,^ applies 
the cat-o'-nine-tails to the garotter, and secretly 
strangles murderers in the recesses of her gaols.* 

Well, perhaps that does not improve matters. 
Is ignorance not invincible ? Does not Schiller say 
' against stupidity the gods themselves contend in 
vain ' ? If Englishmen, seventeen years after the 
knout lias disappeared from Russia, persist in 

' Recent delMtse in ParlUmeDt almost lead ooe to believe thftt, in the 
upinioD of the English OaTenuueat, at least, tlie Army Cat u quite & 
[nllar of the British ConstitutioD. 

■ When this letter firet appeared exception vaa taken to tMa phiMe, 
perhaps not without «oine ground. Nempaper reporters, it was aaid, 
were al-maj/i present at English executions. Since then, howerer, the 
Home Secretarj, Mr. Cross, has excluded reporters hj an UkoM, and n 
the phnae can now remain unaltered. 

Some English Prejtidices. 185 

denouncing Eussians for using the knout, what can 
we hope ? And here again we Eussians labour at a 
great disadvantage. We shrink from the task of 
vindicating ourselves even from the most unjust 
reproaches. Some accusations appear to us so incon- 
ceivably absurd that we cannot understand how any 
answer can be required. 

Let me illustrate this. Last year a curious col- 
lection of calumnies against Eussia was anony- 
mously published in England. My English friends 
were anxious that it should be refuted. I applied, 
and applied in vain, to one after another of my 
literary friends in Eussia to undertake such a task. 
* How can you ask such a thing ! No Eussian with 
any self-respect could stoop to notice such monstrous 
libels. Your beloved England is evidently demoral- 
ising you, or you would never pay attention to such 

Is it either right or generous to declare that be- 
cause no reply is made no reply can be made ? The 
Golos in 1876 published a long and circumstantial 
story of the way in which Lord Beaconsfield abused 
his position as Premier to influence the Money Mar- 
ket. Nobody in England dreamed of categorically 
refuting it. They regarded the calumny as beneath 
contempt. Has not a Eussian as much right to 
silence when accused as Lord Beaconsfield ? 

I am the more disposed to attribute this strange 
antipathy to ignorance, because those Englishmen 
who really know us are among the best friends we 
have. If there were really some secret antipathy 

186 Misunderstandings and Prejudices, 

between the nations this would not be so. In cases 
of mutual repulsion the repulsion is most marked 
when the two objects approach. But English resi- 
dents in Bussia rarely manifest the irrational anti- 
pathy which is so strongly shown on the banks 
of the Thames. 

Examples of an exactly opposite feeling are 
present to our memory — such, for instance, as the 
warm-hearted letters which appeared in the Daily 
News and the Times in 1876, from well-known Eng- 
lish residents in Moscow ; and, frankly speaking, I 
think they are only paying us with our own coin. 

The position of Bussian visitors in England 
is, unfortunately, not always so pleasant. When 
England is determined only to recognise in every 
Bussian a concealed enemy, intriguing against Eng- 
Ush interests, it is not to be wondered at if Bus- 
sians shrink from visiting England, and if the two 
nations are somewhat estranged. Permit me to illus- 
trate this by a Uttle personal detail. As many 
Bussians generally do, I was going to spend my 
summer and autumn abroad. Several people came 
to take leave of me, and we began discussing the pro- 
jected journey. No sooner did I say * I hope to go 
for a few weeks to England ' when I was interrupted 
by several voices. * It's impossible ! Can you really 
go after what has happened ? Why should you not 
rather go to China? ' * What do you mean ? ' I asked. 
* How can one take the place of the other ? ' * Oh,' 
they rephed ; * one is preferable to the other. The 
Chinese are less afraid, less suspicious of foreigners. 

Some English Prejudices. 187 

than the English ; and besides, what the Chinese say 
and think of us we at least do not know.' * But then, 
the few friends we have, why should I not be 
allowed to see them ? ' I asked. * We have no 
friends,' they exclaimed ; * you are under a delusion I 
And they but honestly expressed the general convic- 
tion. How can it be otherwise, when it is impossible 
for a Bussian to pay a friendly visit to London 
without being regarded as a Kussian partisan or even 
as a Russian agent ? 

Thousands of Eussians go to France. Every 
Frenchman noticing the fact looks rather pleased, and 
finds it only natural: ^ Ma foi^ comvie de raisoriy 
on adore Paris, c'est tout simple I ' But if a Bussian 
comes to London it produces quite a different 
impression upon EngUshmen. * What can be his 
or her object in coming here ? It looks very bad, 
the very fact of these frequent visits — very bad 
indeed ! ' The unfortunate foreigner tries to explain 
that he has a great Uking for the country, its pecuUar 
quahties, for some friends who have always been the 
same, equally kind and intelligent. But, after he has 
said all this, it remains as incredible as before ! And 
yet, wliy should it be impossible for a Russian to visit 
England except as an * agent ' ? You are really too 

The evidence of war correspondents^ of the Eng- 

* Ab 00 much lias been said of the ferocity of oar soldiers, may I ask 
credulous believers in Rhodope and other fables to read the following tes- 
timony by a distinguished British officer who bears an illustrious name in 
English history? Addressing his constituents at Sunderland in 1877, 
after three months' Aojoum in the Russian camp, Sir Henry Havelock. 

188 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

Ush press is not without some little weight. Colonel 
Brackenbury, Mr. MacGahan, Mr. Forbes, Sir Henry 
Havelock, Mr. Boyle and others, less well known, made 
the acquaintance of Eussians in Bou mania and Bul- 
garia under circumstances which render concealment 
of realities impossible. I desire no better verdict for 
my countrymen than that pronounced by those 
witnesses selected at random, although some were 
hostile and others did not spare their reproaches 
against what they beUeved to be wrong — for, after 
all, we cannot be vexed with people, although they 
do not arrive at exactly the right result, if they 
honestly do their best. 

This habit of always reproaching us with past, 
present, and future crimes is unjust and impolitic. 
Just put yourself in our place, and imagine a foreigner 
never uttering or writing a word about England 

M.P.y said he found the Russian soldier docile, gentle, tractable, he had 
almost said sheepish to a degree in his gentleness. During the time he 
was with the Russians, he came into contact in one way or other 
with 200,000 soldiers. Instead of finding them a degraded people, he 
only saw three drunken men during the whole time ! In the dealings of 
the Russians with the Bulgarians, he remarked at all times the greatest 
gentleness and abstinence from violence. He not only saw them in large 
masses, but in distant villages, at the roadside, where soldiers were 
under no control, and the presence of a stranger like himself would have 
no effect on their action. Their conduct was the most admirable he had 
ever seen in his life. In their treatment of their enemies, were they the 
bloodthirsty people they had been represented ? lie was associated with 
the Cossacks for about three months. He never saw a tamer set of 
people in his life. He would challenge anybody to produce one single 
well-authenticated instance of violence, even of a minor degree, pei^ 
petrated by a Russian officer or soldier, either north or south of the 
Balkans, during the whole time of their occupation of that country ! ' 
Those who desire other testimonies will find them in the admirable 
papers on < The Rhodope Commisnon and the Pall Mall GmeUe, 
reprinted from the Spectator by Chatto and Wlndus. 

Some English Prejudices. 189 

without exclaiming, *What a disgrace your Opiiim 
Trade with China is, in these days of Christianity and 
progress.' What would you feel ?— although the re- 
proach is, perhaps, not so unfair as many you cast at 
us. Suppose he even went further, and declared, 

* You cannot care a straw for civiUsation and liberty 
as long as you continue to tolerate the Opium Trade,' 
would he be worse than many EngUshmen who dis- 
believe our sympathies with the Slavs, because of 
the shortcomings with which they reproach Russia ? ^ 

In Eussia, when it happened to me to draw the 
attention of my countrymen to some friendly notice 
written about our people, and to read aloud some 
few favourable lines, I generally was interrupted with 

* Well, well, when is the " but " coming ? When 
are you coming to "Poland," "barbarism," the 

' This point is put very forcibly by Mr. James Annand in one of bis 
excellent Campaigning Papers, He says : ' Suppose England were in a 
condition similar to tbat of Russia, with more territory than wealth, 
and comparatively unknown among its neighbours, and suppose a set of 
people, say in Germany, were to devote themselves to telling how we 
blew Sepoys from guns in India, how we gag the native press, how we 
forced on an opium war, how we fought small potentates with little 
provocation, and how wherever we go the aboriginal inhabitants perish 
before us ; suppose it were told that our people are divorced from the 
soil, that every thirtieth person we meet is an actual pauper, and every 
sixth or seventh an occasional one; suppose it were preached abroad 
that our law holds a man innocent until he be proved guilty, and yet 
he may be imprisoned like a common felon before his guilt is proved. 
AU these are facts, or rough semblances of facts, and yet they would 
give an utterly inadequate idea of the kind of country England is, and 
of the kind of people of whom it is composed. Suppose the fact of our 
liberation of the West Indian slaves were suppressed or never referred 
to as the Russian liberation of the Serfs is^ and suppose all the evil we 
ever did from the days of our barbarism upwards were continually 
brought before us whenever we made a movement to do well : we should 
be somewhat in the position in which certain people placed Russia 
during the late negotiations*' 

190 Misunderstandings and Prejudices, 

" cherished knout," and the quicksilver mines, or at 
least the latest series of atrocities which need to be 
refuted ? ' Discouraged, I often had to give up my 
conciUatory attempt. Quicksilver mines, and Poland, 
and the famous knout actually seldom failed to appear, 
and my poor efforts to describe English sympathies 
or to explain my Anglomania generally terminated in 
a ridiculous fiasco. 

No Englishman is asked to forget tKe duties which 
he owes to his own country: all that is wanted is 
that he should speak out his friendly feeUngs — ^when 
there are such — ^without trembling for being taken 
for a partisan or an agent, and even might I hope, 
without the everlasting * but ' which now qualifies 
and spoils almost every expression of your sympathy. 

After the knout, Russia is most abused for her 
treatment of her subject races, and with as Uttle 
reason. We have, for instance, many Mohammedan 
subjects. They are not oppressed or persecuted. 
They have all the hberty enjoyed by the Mohamme- 
dans in Turkey, except the liberty of oppressing their 
Christian neighbours. They certainly enjoy a far 
better government than their co-religionists in Asia 
Minor. In the Baltic provinces there are many local 
municipal institutions ; and no race has less reason to 
complain of ill-treatment than the Germans, who 
enjoy so large a share of the administration of the 
Empire. It is a characteristic of Russia that we 
open even the highest branches of our service to all 
our subject races — an example which England, I 
think, does not follow in India. General MeUkoff 

Some English Prejudices. 191 

and General Lazareff, who have covered themselves 
with glory in Armenia, are both Armenians. Todle- 
ben and Heimann are Germans of the Baltic Pro- 
vinces. Nepokoitschitzky is a Pole, as also is 

* Ah, Poland ! ' you exclaim. Of course it is in 
vain for a Bussian to appeal for a hearing of his 
defence about the Poles, even to those who deny Home 
Rule to the Irish. 

Have you studied the facts — * those engrossed 
hierograms,' as Mr. Carlyle says, of which so few 
have the key ? Have you tried, before framing your 
bill of indictment agamst a whole nation, at least to 
read what is written by our few, but honest, coura- 
geous defenders. 

M. Emile de Girardin, in spite of his intimacy 
with the Bonapartes, felt indignant at the sheer 
ignorance of our accusers, and wrote his famous * La 
Pologne et la Diplomatic ' — full of authentic docu- 
ments and historical proofs of the groundlessness 
of the prevaiUng prejudices. But this book, I fear, 
is not extensively circulated in England. 

In another chapter I shall refer to this Polish Ques- 
tion, but now I content myself with saying that Poland 
would have had a Constitution of its own for the last 
sixteen years if the Poles would have been content 
with the boundaries of the kingdom of Poland. But 
when they insisted, even at the sword's point, that 
we should not only give Home Rule to Poland but 
Polish rule almost to half Russia, which they claimed 
to be theirs, then a reaction set in, and the reforms 

ri-L — 

192 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

which the Grand Duke Constantine went to Warsaw 
with such high hopes to estabUsh remained a dead 

Constitutions are not unkno¥ni in Bussia, nor is it 
beyond the boundaries of Bussian policy to grant 
Home Bule to its subject provinces. Those who 
thmk so should go to Finland. In that important 
maritime province they would find the Finns in 
possession of a very large measure of administrative 
independence. The Bussian language is not employed 
in Finnish courts or in Finnish official documents. 
Am I wrong in saying that in Wales the Welsh lan- 
guage is not so favoured ? 

The Lutheran, and not the Bussian Orthodox 
Church, is the estabUshed religion of Finland. Nay, 
even the Bussian rouble will not circulate in that 
Bussian province — ^which lies almost at the gates of 
the Bussian capital. Finland has its own laws, its own 
legislature, its own Church, its own coinage, its own 
language, its own budget, and its own national debt. 

M. de Circourt, one of the most distinguished 
Frenchmen of this century, whose stores of informa- 
tion were as exact as they were vast, in his conversa- 
tions vnth Mr. Senior,^ referred to this subject in 
terms which must horrify those who deUght to repre- 
sent Finland as one of the many victims of * Bussian 
aggression.' * The Swedes,' said M. de Circourt, in 
1863, * must know that Finland is irrecoverably lost 
to them. They ruled it oppressively. Not a Fin was 
allowed to take part in the management of his own 

> Fortnightly Review^ January, 1880, p. 116. 


Some English Prejudices, 193 

country. It is now one of tjie best governed countries 
in the world • The population consists of about 
50,000 Russians, 250,000 Swedes, and 1,600,000 Fins. 
The Finnish population has doubled since Finland 
became Eussian. They detest Sweden, and are loyal 
Russians.' When asked by Mr. Senior, ' How do you 
account for the popularity of Russian rule in Finland 
and its unpopularity in Poland ? ' M. de Circourt re- 
plied, * The causes are religion and race. The Fins 
are Lutherans, enjoying the best form of Christianity. / / 
The Poles are Roman Catholics, subject to the worst. 
Lutherans are tolerant, and are satisfied with tolera- 
tion. Roman Catholics require supremacy. In 
Russian and Prussian Poland and in Lithuania they 
are merely on a par with the other Christian sects. 
The Luthei'an Fins are not merely unpersecuted, their 
clergy are paid by the State. Then they are an ad- 
mirable race: honest, diligent, quiet, and moral. 
They are among the happiest people in Europe, as the 
Poles are among the unhappiest.' 

Nor does the recognition of local independence 
destroy the loyalty of our Finns. During this war 
their enthusiasm has been very great, although they 
are connected neither by race nor rehgion with the 
Southern Slavs. There is no conscription in Finland. 
Its system of raising soldiers is the same as the Eng- 
hsh. A few weeks ago a call was made for volun- 
teers in one district in Finland.^ In three days the 
list was more than filled by gallant men who were 
eager to be led to the liberation of Bulgaria. That 

' This letter was written in November 1877. 


194 Misunderstandings and Prejudices, 

they knew it was no holiday work upon which they 
had entered was shown by one grim Uttle fact. Every 
volunteer before joining the ranks provided himself 
with a dagger, in order that he might have the means 
of saving himself by a swift death-stroke from the 
mutilation and torture that awaits the wounded who 
fall into the hands of the Turks 1 Have we not 
reason to be proud of men who go out joyfully to 
risk their Uves in such a war ? 

It is difficult to convince those who are not 
famiUar with Bussia how wilUngly the whole popula- 
tion of my country will surrender all that they have, 
even life itself, if it be required by the Tzar, in order 
to cai'ry on the war which he has undertaken for the 
oppressed Slavs. The declaration in the petitions 
which flowed in to the Emperor after the Moscow 
address — * We place our fortunes and our Uves at 
thy disposal' — was no meaningless phrase. The 
records of Eussia's history prove that it is a simple 
statement of a fact. 

The calculating, sceptical, selfish part of Europe 
may look upon the addresses and petitions to the 
Emperor merely as a species of new-feshioned 
eloquence. But in burning, decisive, historical mo- 
ments such Eussian words have always been syn- 
onymous with deeds. An offer of * Ufe and fortune ' 
can only be voluntaiy. We Eussians are sometimes 
prevented from having this will categorically ex- 
pressed and carried out ; but after we have almost 
implored to be allowed to sacrifice them in a holy 
cause we never fear to be taken at our word — ^we 

Some English Prejiuiices. 195 

never shrink jfrom its consequences. The mighty 
voice of the Knssian people has never been heard 
in vain. 

Permit me to recall one instance alone out of 
numbers which might be mentioned to illustrate 
this characteristic of my countrymen. In the time 
of Peter the Great, whilst Eussia was fighting, not for 
the tortured Slavs, not for her persecuted co-reli- 
gionists, but merely for the possession of the Baltic 
Provinces — a question of comparatively small mo- 
ment to the Eussian people — the Emperor sent a 
ukase to the Senate fixing new taxes upon salt. 
No sooner was the Imperial decree read than Prince 
Jacob Dolgorouky sprang from his chair, and in the 
presence of a numerous assemblage, to the bewilder- 
ment of everyone, tore it to pieces. 

* Emperor 1 ' exclaimed he, with a trembling 
voice, * you want money? We understand it ! But 
why should the poor suffer and pay for it? Have 
you no wealthy nobility to dispose of? Prince 
Menshikoff may build a ship at his private expense, 
Apraxine another one, and I will certainly not re- 
main behind my countrymen ! ' 

Such was the spirit displayed by the Eussians in 
those days, and since the time of Peter the Great 
Eussians have not degenerated. 


lOG Misunderatandings and Prejudices. 



BvssiA, writes a gifted friend of mine, * Russia like 
England lias her faults : tlieir faults are identical.' 

Without endorsing this view, it strikes me that 
there is, at all events, a great similarity in the com- 
plaints which each makes of the other. If you lived 
in Russia, you would see the other side of the shield, 
which is not visible in England. Sometimes at 
Moscow, when fresh from my English visit, when 
I hear good Russian patriots declaiming ^mnst 
England's shortcomings, their words sound to me 
hke an eolio of the denunciations of Russia with 
which I am sometimes favoured by my Turkophile 
friends. One cannot help smiUng sometimes, for the 
indignation in both cases is just as intense, the accu- 
sations are just the same: only the names are 
changed. At Moscow they aay England where at 
London they say Russia, but with that exception 
the j)hihppics are almost identical. 

While admitting that Russian patriots are some- 
times mistaken, I must submit that English patriots 
are not always well informed about Russia. 

Take, for instance, the charges which rise to the 

Poland ami Circassia. 197 

minds of these mutual accusers when they utter the 
words 'Poland and Ireland.' Counting upon your 
love for straightforwardness, I must say that we can 
never understand why you should be so horrified 
with Russia for taking one share of partitioned 
Poland, while England never seems ashamed of 
having conquered Ireland by the sword. There are 
many points in common between the Poles and the 
Irish. Was it not your Prince Consort who said 
* The Poles 1 they are the Lish of the Continent ' ? 

And here I may make just a passing remark, 
that it seems to a Russian somewhat strange that of 
the three Powers which divided Poland, your wrath 
is entirely expended upon the one which had the 
best historical justification for her action, whilst the 
worst of the partitioning Powers is the special 
favourite of EngUsh Conservatives.^ 

Of course I know that you have been induced by 
Mr. Gladstone, and other Liberal statesmen before 
his day, to improve the condition of the Irish. But 
just as your Poet Laureate still complains of the 
knout in Russia, which we abolished many years ago, 
so Russian readers are sometimes apt to be so far 
misled by the complaints of the Irish Home Rule 
obstructionists as to beUeve that Ireland still writhes 
an unwilhng victim in the grasp of the England — say 
of 1798. 

If our past in Poland is to be perpetually revived 

' ' The manner in which Austria acted was perhaps the worst of the 
three confederates. Frederick and Catherine might be considered open 
foes; but the blackness of Austria was double-dyed, for she was 
treacherous and cowardly.' — Thirty Years of Foreign Policy, p. 32. ^ 

198 Miaundenstandinga and Prejudices, 

to inflame English animosities against Russia, can 
you wonder if your past in Ireland should occa- 
sionally be used in Bussia to justify invectives against 
England, as * a merciless oppressor of helpless 
nationalities'? Is there not somewhere a sajring 
justifying the same measure you mete out to others 
being meted out to you ? It is quite as imjust for 
Englishmen to abuse Bussia of to-day for the sack of 
Warsaw, and to excite prejudice against us by re- 
citing Campbell's rhapsodies about Kosciusko, as it 
is for Bussians to denounce England's doings in 
Ireland as if the Penal Laws were still in force and 
* flogging Fitzgerald ' were still committing atrocities 
upon the Irish peasantry. 

Despite Polish legends and Irish grievances, 
both Poland and Ireland, I believe, are getting on 
tolerably well under the respective heels of the 
Muscovite and the Saxon. As to Poland, let me, as 
usual, revert to English testimony, for I carefully 
avoid quoting our own, lest it should be said we are 
acting as judges in our own case. Mr. William 
Mather, of Salford, returning home in May 1878, 
from a lengthened tour in Bussia, wrote to the 
Manchester Examiner : * Poland is now one of the 
most prosperous and rapidly developing parts of the 
Empire. This I know to be a fact. In all business 
and industrial pursuits, Poland is developing more 
soundly than any other part of Bussia.' 

Becent reports of your consuls give the same 
flattering accoimts of the present condition of Poland. 
They say, 'there is a very remarkable progress in 

Poland and Circassia. 199 

commerce, agriculture, and manufacture,' and further, 
that * the country is becoming rich and prosperous 
beyond all expectation.' ^ 

Whatever wrongs the Eussians may have done to 
the Poles, they were by no means the unoffending 
neighbours that some people believe.^ That * Sar- 
matia fell unwept without a crime ' is, I believe, an 
article in the English creed ; but the Poles took 
Moscow before we took Warsaw, and there was 
more excuse for rectifying our frontier at the expense 
of Poland a hundred years ago than there is for 
Lord Beaconsfield's scientific rectification of the 
north-west jfrontier of India at the expense of 

Mr. Cobden's testimony is well known.* But I can 

^ See Mackenzie's The Nineteenth Century, p. 370. 

' I wish that some of my countrymen who possess that earnest love 
of truth and superiority to popular prejudices which so eminently dis- 
tinguish your great historian, Mr. Froude, would render the Russians in 
Poland the inestimahle service which the latter has rendered 'the 
English in Ireland/ Believe me the responsihility of the Poles for the 
miseries of Poland is at least as great as that of the Irish for the suffer^ 
ings of Ireland. 

' Mr. Cohden, in 1836, declared that there had been ' lavished upon 
Poland more false sentiment, deluded sympathy, and amiable ignor- 
ance, than on any other subject of the present age;' and he proved 
that, whatever might be the wickedness of the partitioning Powers, 
their act had been fraught with incalculable blessings to the Poles. 
lie says : — * Down to the partition, nineteen out of every twenty inhabi- 
tants were slaves belonging to the very worst aristocracy of ancient 
or modem times. The Poles, who are now viewed only as a suffering 
and injured people, were, during the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth 
centuries, a most formidable and aggressive enemy to the neighbouring 
empires. They knew no other employment than that of the sword; 
war, devastation, and bloodshed were the only fashionable occupations 
for the nolnlity, whilst the peasants reaped the fruits of famine and 

slaughter From the death of Sigismond, Poland became one 

universal scene of corruption, faction, and confusion. There is nothing 
in the history of the world comparable for confusion, suffering, and 

200 Misunderstandings and Prejudices, 

call another witness whose voice ought to be 
heard with respect by those who refuse to listen to 
Mr. Cobden. There was a debate in the House of 
Commons on March 16, 1847, upon the annexation of 
Cracow, in the course of which a very remarkable 
speech was made from which I make no apology for 
making the following lengthy extract. 

If there be any assembly in Europe which should be the 
last to criticise the conduct of the Powers with regard to 
Poland it is the Parliament of England. Before the partition 
of Poland took place the Minister of England was perfectly 
aware of what was contemplated. He was in commimication 

wickednees to the condition of this unhappy kingdom during these two 
centuries. The republic of Poland was a despotism one hundred thousand 
times worse than that of Turkey at this time, because it gave to 100,000 
tyrants absolute power OTer the lives of the rest of the community. The 
historian of The Anarchy of Poland (in four octavo volumes) exclaims — 
'' Oh, that some strong despot would come, and in mercy rescue these 
people from themselves." The fate of Poland was but a triumph of 

justice, without which its history would have conveyed no moral 

The dismemberment of that empire has been followed by an increase in 
the amoimt of peace, wealth, liberty, cirilisation and happiness enjoyed 
by the great mass of the people. Slavery no more exists, the peasantry 
now possess the control over their own persons and fortimes, and are at 
liberty to pursue happiness according to their own free will and pleasure, 
which is nearly the amount of freedom that can h^feU to be possessed by 
the great mass of any nation. Under Russian rule, the condition of the 
country has continued to improve beyond all precedent ; at no former 
period of its history was the public wealth so great and so generally 
difiused. The happy countenances of the inferior classes of society ex- 
hibited a wonderful contrast to what had lately been. To restore the 
Polish nation to its condition previously to the first partition in 1772 
would be to plunge nineteen-twentieths of the inhabitants from freedom 
into bondage, from comparative happiness into the profoundest state of 
misery. In all cases where neighbouring States have been annexed to Ihissia 
the inhabitants have thereby been advanced in civilisation and happine^. 
Poland has undoubtedly benefited more than any other country by its 
incorporation with Rusf»ia. The spread of Russian Empire has invariably 
increased instead of diminishing the growth of civilisation and com- 
merce. '—Cobden's Political Writings. Poland, pp. 92-97 and 101. 

Poland and Circassia. 201 

with the Government of France, and France offered to nnite 
with England to prevent that partition. That Minister was 
second to none of those who have regulated the affairs of 
this nation in his knowledge of the Continent ; and what did 
the Parliament do? On the very eve of the partition of 
Poland they turned that Minister out of office, and Poland 
was partitioned. 

Many events have happened since then. Who can now 
deny that the spoliation of Poland has ceased to be a 
political catastrophe, and must be regarded as an historical 
fact ? There must have been some good cause for a great 
and numerous race having met the doom we all acknowledge 
they have encountered. We hear much of a great nation. 
The hon. Member for Bolton tells us of twenty millions of 
people ; but it is not the number of the people which makes 
a great nation. A great nation is a nation which produces 
great men. It is not by millions of population that we 
prove the magnitude of inind; and when I hear of the 
* infamous * partition of Poland — although as an Englishman 
I regret a political event which I think was injurious to our 
country * — I have no sympathy with the race which was 
partitioned. It is just 100 years ago that it was proposed 
to partition another Empire. Look at the proceedings that 
took place at Frankfort against Maria Theresa of Austria. 
Look at the arch-conspirators that were there leagued 
together, at the head of whom was the King and the 
Republic of Poland. Why was not Austria partitioned when 
Poland was at the head of the conspirators to destroy her ? 
I tell you it was the national character that saved Austria. 
She was not twenty millions then, and yet she baffled Prussia, 
she baffled France, she baffled Poland — that Poland which 
always comes before us as if she had been the victim of 
Europe instead of having been a ready conspirator on every 
occasion, and the pamperer of the lusts of an aristocracy 

' The cjnic&l doctrine of ' BritiBh interests/ which was applied to 
Bulgaria in 1877, had been applied by its author, it would seem, to 
Poland thirty years ago. 

202 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

which ultimately betrayed her. Is it the suffering people 
who raise the commotions which are constantly taking place 
in Italy, in Poland, in Spain ? Are they the parties to those 
movements ? No. In every country it is the remnant of a 
subverted aristocracy — subverted because they were false to 
their trust, and never placed themselves at the head of their 
people. The men who really caused the fall of Poland were 
not the great Powers whom you denounce in your hustings' 
speeches. It was this order of men who never supported 
the people, under whom the people, indeed, were serfs and 
not free men. In Russian Poland the peasantry are in a 
£Eur more easy condition than they were under independent 
Poland. Are you surprised, then, that the men who found 
themselves no longer serfs, but placed in this improved con- 
dition, should adhere to the arbitrary constitution which you 
denounce, and shrink from the aristocratic conspirators whom 
you patronise ? If you assume to school the potentates and 
guide the populations of Europe, it is at least expected of 
you that your counsels should be founded on knowledge ; it 
is at least expected that they should be expressed in the 
decorous language of a dignified conciliation.^ 

That testimony is very strong, co^ from any 
Englishman at a time when, as a bitter enemy of 
Kussia's declared, but a few months before ' the blood 
of the aristocracy of Galicia had been poured out 
like water in a common massacre,' but its weight will 
no doubt be immeasurably increased, when I add that 
the speaker was then Mr. Disraeli, who as the Earl of 
Beaconsfield is now Prime Minister of England. 

Fifteen years ago the Grand Duke Constantine 
went to Poland to give her a Constitution. He was 
ardently supported by the Marquis Weliapolsky 
and Count Zamoisky, but the Marquis almost 

* Hansard, voL xci. pp. 67-01. 

Poland and Circassia. 203 

miraculously escaped death from assassination, and 
the offer of a Constitution was responded to by re- 
bellion. Demands were made that autonomous 
Poland should extend almost beyond Smolensk, and 
in the troubles that ensued the Constitution was 
abandoned. The facts are notorious, but if you 
refuse to receive them on Bussian testimony, Mr. 
Butler Johnstone, who is fanatically Turkophile, 
states them in the letters which he wrote from 
Eussia two or three years ago.^ 

But do you know that if the Poles have not a 
national Government of their own, it is to some extent 
due to EngUsh diplomacy ? After the overthrow of 
Napoleon, our Emperor was most anxious to re- 
estabUsh the Polish Kingdom, and, if he failed, it was 
due to the representations of Austria and Prussia, sup- 
ported by the EngUsh Plenipotentiaries. It is not only 
at Berlin that EngUsh Plenipotentiaries play a very 
different part from that demanded by the English 
people. Lord Beaconsfield had a good precedent for 
opposing the resurrection of Bulgaria, for, more than 

' ^ Political opinion in Russia would have been quite willing to grant 
autonomy with reference to Poland proper — i.e, ihe Grand Duchy of 
Warsaw. The chief oigan of public opinion in Moscow was allowed 
openly to advocate this solution of the Polish difficulty. It was the 
Poles themselves who rejected it, . . . and insisted on their ancient 
provinces of Lithuania sharing their future. This claim of the Polish 
people to what the Russians caU their Western Provinces was the tocsin 
which roused the patriotism of the nation, and the unequal struggle 
conmienced. It was essentially and distinctly a struggle, not for Poland, 
but for Lithuania, where the minority, the proprietors and ruling classes, 
are chiefly Polish, but the majority, the peasantry, belonged to a dif- 
ferent though kindred branch of the g^reat Slav and Sanuatian family.' — 
A Trip up the Volga, By F. Butler-Johnstone, p. 7. 

204 Misunderstandings and Prejudices, 

sixty years ago, had not Lord Castlereagh opposed 
the resurrection of Poland ? 

Addressing the Marquis of Londonderry on 
August 31, 1831, on the discussions which took 
place between the powers in 1814-15, the Duke of 
Wellington wrote as follows : — 

I think the principal subject of the discussion between 
Lord Castlereagh and the Emperor Alexander, who was then 
in a liberal mood, was the desire of the latter to constitute 
a Kingdom of Poland by adding to the provinces which had 
formed the Duchy of Warsaw the Polish provinces acquired 
by Russia by diflferent treaties of partition ; of which Kingdom 
the Emperor of Bussia was to be King. The scheme created 
great alarm in the Courts of Austria and Prussia, who felt 
that their Polish provinces would be but insecure possessions 
if it were adopted, and your brother took up the cause for 
them. The affair ended by the partial adoption of the plan : 
that is to say, the Emperor became the King of Poland, con- 
sisting of those provinces which had constituted the Duchy 
of Warsaw, with the exception of certain cessions to Prussia 
and Austria respectively. The Emperor reserved to himself 
the right of increasing the Kingdom of Poland by adding 
thereto such Russo-Polish provinces as he might think 
proper, and he stipulated for a national Government for the 
Poles, not only by the King of Poland that was himself, but 
by the Emperor of Austria and the King of Prussia. Russia 
is the one of three Governments which has executed this 
last-mentioned article of the Treaty of Vienna with most 

M. Adolphe de Circourt, Ambassador of the 
Frencli RepubUc of 1848 at the Court of BerUn, 
gave to Mr. Senior in 1863^ some facts about 

* Wellington DespatcheSf vol. vii. p. 609. 

^ See Fortnightly Review, January, 1880: 'Conversations with 
Adolphe de Circourt.' 

Poland and Circasaia. 205 

Poland and the Poles which I take the liberty of 
quoting here. M. de Circourt was, as M. Scherer 
testifies, a man of ' prodigious erudition,' ' a living 
dictionary,' whose extraordinary attainments and 
intellectual gifts gave him a European reputation. 
Eeferring to the insurrection of 1863, M. de Circourt 
told Mr. Senior that it was almost entirely the work 
of the low townspeople, the poor nobles, and the 
retainers of the richer proprietors. Hardly any of 
the noble proprietors, or of the bonne bourgeoisie, or 
of the peasants had taken part in it. The rising was 
not much more important than the brigandage of 
Naples. Referring to the aristocratic class which 
gives to the Poles their national character, M. de 
Circourt says : — 

They sigh, and as long as they are kept poor by their 
idleness, and idle by the want of education and by the pre- 
judices of caste, they will sigh for the good old times, when 
they were the human beings of Poland and the peasants 
mere domestic animals ; when any one of them had power 
to stop by a liberurn, veto the legislation and the pohcy of 
the kingdom. They hate the improvement which has fol- 
lowed the Russian Government. The bulk of the peasants 
are indiflFerent, or opposed to the insurrection. The Russian 
Government has not been a bad one to them. Even despotism 
is better for the lower classes than an ignorant aristocracy. 

The whole PoUsh population is six milUons seven hundred 
and ninety-two thousand— 3,872,100 in the Kingdom of 
Poland, 1,100,000 in Galicia, 1,140,000 in White and Little 
Russia, to the west of the Dnieper, to whom must be added 
1,615,000 Roman Catholic Lithuanians, who, though not of 
Polish race, sympathise with the Poles as co-religionists. 
But of this total of eight millions and a half only the 
3,872,000 of the Kingdom of Poland are compact enough to 

206 Mi-ntfideratandings and Prejudices. 

fonn a separate State. In the Busraan provinces to the west 
of the Dnieper there are 6,960,000 Busaians of the Greek 
Church, 1,140,000 Jews, and 116,000 Wallachs— that ie, 
6,215,000, as af^amst 2,661,000 Poles and Catholic Litha- 
anians. In Galicia the Poles are only 1,100,000 ; the 
Bat^eniaoa and others of Boasian descent and religion are 
3,100,000. So that in these outlying provinces the por- 
tion of the population which is not Polish or Catholic is 
9,315,000; that which is Polish or Catholic is only 

When the Poles penetrated into Western Bussia, the 
Poles — that is to say, the Polish nobility — seized the land 
and gradually reduced the peasants to the state of serfs. 
From Poland the malady of serfdom spread over Bussia, but 
was not finally established in Bussia proper — that is to say, 
in MuscoTy — till about the year 1618- It was not a Bnssian 

On the whole the Poles are the worst nation in civilised 
Europe : the most turbulent, the most unscrupulous, the 
least capable of doing good to themselves or to anybody else, 
and, after the French, the most capable of doing harm. And, 
as is the case with all weak, silly, ill-conditioned nations, 
they have been always ill-treated since the time when they 
were strong enough to ill-treat others. I know that the 
BuBsian Government is anzious to do for the Poles all that 
can be done for them without injustice to its subjects. It 
cannot surrender to Poland a population of five millions of 
Bussians in its western provinces, in order to please scarcely 
more than one million Poles. 

Independence means the right of eighty-five thousand 
bmiKes to oppress four millions of their fellow-countrymen, 
and six or seven millions more of people who differ from 
them in race or in religion, and belong to them only because 
they inhabit countries which two or three hundred years ago 
, went by the name of Poland. 

' Bussia will fight to the knife rather than create an inde- 

\ pendent Poland. It would be a mere auanirgarde of France 
in her next war against Bussia. 

Poland and Circassia, 207 

M. de Circourt then reverts to a subject which 
should not be lost sight of by those who are content 
to derive all their ideas of Kussia and the Eussians 
from Polish sources. Mr. Senior having asked whether 
the Poles really enjoyed religious liberty as M. de 
Circourt asserted, and referred to the famous legend 
of persecution under Nicholas, and the outrages 
inflicted on the abbess and the nuns of a convent at 
Minsk, to force them to apostatise to the Greek 
creed, M. de Circourt replied : — 

*I do not believe a word of those stories. I do not 
behave that there ever was such an abbess or such nuns or 
such a convent. The hes of the Poles are beyond descrip- 
tion or enumeration. Never beheve a word a Pole tells you. 
He secretes and then pours out falsehood naturally, almost 

I do not pretend to write a treatise on the subject 
of Poland. I merely jot down one or two things that 
it strikes one are not always remembered by our 
accusers. Believe me, we are not undesirous to do 
' Justice to Poland,' but our efibrts are made none 
the easier by unjust invectives from those who are 
unacquainted with our dijficulties. 

There is another sore subject with Englishmen 
when they speak of Bussia — that of Schamyl and the 
Circassians. They formed a stock subject of English 
attacks some years ago, but is it not time you re- 
considered your ideas in the light of recent facts ? 

In 1876, Lord Beaconsfield described the Circas- 
sians as peaceful, law-abiding, industrious settlers 
in European Turkey. Mr. Sedley Taylor wittily 

208 Mtminderstandings and Prejudice-". 

observed that he might as well have said that ' the 
man-eating tiger has become ■ a strict vegetarian, 
and is engaged in drawing children about in go-carts, 
without any imputation of ungraminiferous behaviour 
resting on his character : ' but everyone was not so 
well informed as Mr. Taylor, and your Premier no 
doubt expressed a common delusion about that in- 
teresting race. But even Lord Beaconsfield, un- 
hesitating as he is in all his statements, would not 
now insist upon the high moral excellence of the 
Circassian character. 

Instead of blaming us, we rather deserve your 
sympathy for having had to establish peace and order 
in regions inhabited by such untameable savages as 
the Tcherkess, whose real character has been so 
terribly attested by desolated Bulgaria. Even the 
Turks have denounced them, and all the corre- 
spondents of your journals agree as to their un- 
enviable disposition. 

As for Schamyl, ' the patriot chief defending in 
his majestic mountans the freedom of his race,' the 
conception no doubt is poetic, and interesting, only it 
is puzzhng to see how vividly it appeals to the 
imagination of the people who are now making war 
on the Amir. 

Schamyl's son entered the Kussian army and 
became an officer of rank in our European service. 
I wonder if there is any chance of seeing a son of 
Yakub Khan as an officer of the Guards in attendance 
on the Empress of India ? 




' There are at this moment millions of Poles beina 
tortured to death in the quicksilver mines of Siberia 
solely because they are Eoman Catholics.' 

Such is one of the startling assertions with which 
all attempts to create an entente cordiale between 
Eussia and England are so often rudely repulsed. It 
is more dignified, of course, to let stories of that kind 
pass unnoticed. One scarcely admits that anybody 
earnestly craving for truth can accept every absurdity. 
But it is no easy task for Enghsh people to find out 
what is the real state of things in Eussia, our language 
being not an easy one to learn,^ and we publish so 
seldom any refutation in our self-defence in any foreign 
tongue. I think my countrymen are wrong in never 
caring for what is said of them abroad, the moment 

' On this point I^nce Bismarck is an authority. In Busch*s remark- 
able book, Bismarck und seine LetUey the German Chancellor expresses 
himself as follows: — *I cannot conceive vfhj Greek should be learnt 
at all. If it is contended that the study of Greek is excellent 
mental discipline, to leam Russian would be still more so, and at the 
same time practically useful. Twenty-eight declensions and the innu- 
merable niceties by which the deficiencies of conjugations are made up 
for are something to exercise the memory. And then, how are the words 
changed ! Frequently nothing but a single letter of the original root 

210 MimndersUmdinga and Prejudices. 

they perceive that ill-faith has anything to do with this 
or with that calumny. There is too much pride in 
our systematic contempt for injustice. I see no 
humiliation in trying to explain the very little I 

I wish I could be eloquent and persuasive. But I 
can only be true and outspoken. Nor is there any 
great merit in reporting what has already become a 
commonplace. That, surely, requires Uttle civic or 
moral courage I But there is a reaaoo which oflen 
prevents Bussians from protestiag, with which I 
heartily sympathise. As a rule, the more you have 
to defend yourself the more you come to the ungene- 
rous ' Tu quoque I ' Now, there is very Uttle consola- 
tion in thinking that we both are equally bad ; but 
how are you to realise our difficulties if you are not 
reminded of your own ? 

When you accuse us, for instance, of our ' atrocious 
convict system,' how are we to avoid reminding you 
that you exiled your convicts to the Antipodes as late 
as 1853, and that your convict establishments at Nor- 
folk Island and Macquarrie Harbour were not supposed 
to be exactly what philanthropists could wish for? 
Indeed, Russians have been often told stories of horror 
of the chain-gang and the lash at the Antipodes which 
rival even the worst your libellers have invented about 
our quicksilver mines. 

England made a point of disbeUeving the reaUty 
of our good feelings because of our shortcomings. 
Are we to apply the same system in judging you ? 
When we honestiy sought your alliance in supporting 

Siberia. 211 

the Eastern Christians, you not only refused your help 
but strengthened as much as you could the Turkish 
resistance. Your Government brought upon us a 
war which cost us not only millions of money, but 
many, many lives, whose loss Avill always be present 
to our memory, in spite of the lapse of time and in 
spite of all the advantages which a successful war 
could gain. Your Government has done us a great 
deal of harm; and that it did not go further was 
simply because it felt convinced that no sacrifice, no 
danger could stop us the moment we thought it our 
duty to resist its concealed or open attacks. And in 
order to calm some generous, straightforward Eng- 
lishmen, your officials tried to estrange them from us 
by inventing 'Kussian atrocities' in Southern Bul- 
garia and elsewhere ; and the ridiculous story about 
the millions of Poles exiled on account of their reli- 
gion to Siberia is one of the snares set for English 

The fact is this : Since this century conmienced 
there have been (taking the most exaggerated num- 
bers) about five hundred thousand persons exiled to 
Siberia, or less than ten thousand a year, but the 
majority of these were not Poles but Russians ; nor 
were the Poles exiled on account of their religion 
— unless ordered to be rebels by their religion, as 
has sometimes been the case : but even then they 
were exiled for their rebellion, not for their religion. 
Imaginary geography is, I dare say, weU studied 
in England, but the real one is decidedly not. Allow 
me, therefore, to remind you of what Siberia really 

p 3 

212 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

is. Siberia is the northern half of the continent 
of Asia, exceeding in size the whole of Europe, and, 
as such, not easily described in a single formula. In 
the extreme north it is almost uninhabitable, and it is 
not thither that we send our criminals, for obvious 
reasons. It is too far off, and if we sent them into 
these dreary expanses of snow and ice, we should have 
to feed them at a ruinous expense. As you see, I do 
not want to idealise the measures taken by our 
Government. But, sending our criminals to Siberia, 
as we do, in order to get rid of them cheaply, it would 
defeat our object to send them into the confines of the 
Arctic Circle. When you say Siberia, you imagine 
only the desolate north. Siberia, to exiles, with few 
exceptions, in reahty means the fertile south, so fer- 
tile, indeed, that when set at Uberty the exiles very 
often prefer to remain on its rich and cultivated soil. 
A university is going to be estabUshed at Tomsk, 
which will enable their children to profit by aU the 
results of culture and civiUsation. Only the worst 
criminals, murderers, and desperate enemies of the 
State are sent to the mines and there employed in 
hard labour. But they form a small minority. In 
nine cases out of ten, exile to Siberia means enforced 
emigration to a fertile and scantily-peopled country. 
Transportation with us does not necessarily imply 
penal servitude. In many cases we simply convey the 
convicts across the Oural range, and then turn them 
loose to help themselves. Once in Siberia they are 
free to go where they please, as long as they do not 
return to European Bussia. 

Sihena. 213 

As the Go vemor - General of Western Siberia 
reports only the other day, the English convict system 
differed from the Eussian chiefly in severity. The 
English convict was compelled to work on penalty of 
the lash or gallows; the Eussian convict — I quote 
General Koznakofi^s exact words, as I have good 
reasons for trusting his word — is pitchforked into 
Siberia, and permitted to do whatever he Ukes short 
of actual crime. Many weighty voices are heard 
against ' the too great liberty accorded to convicts.' 
But foolish kind-heartedness, however absurd such an 
assertion may appear to you, is one of our national 
features. We often bear in mind what our great 
Empress, Catherine the Second, used to say : — * Better 
pardon ten criminals than punish one innocent.' We 
feel these words, and act accordingly, and I would 
prefer being still more foolish to introducing the 
slavery of EngUsh convict prisons into Siberia. To 
accuse and find fault is always an easy thing. To 
accuse with indisputable good ground is more diffi- 
cult, but to understand entirely those we judge is 
almost beyond our power. So, as you see, it is only 
natural to distrust our judgment if its object is to tor- 
ture those who depend upon it. But is it such a cruel 
thing, so revolting to EngUsh humanity, when a man 
has committed even a crime to give him a new start 
in life m a new and more fertile country ? 

Mr. Barry, in his ' Eussia in 1870,' declares that in 
many districts the climate of Siberia has the mildness 
of that of Italy, lying, as it does, in the same latitude 
as Venice. The soil is a rich, deep black loam, capable 

214 Misunderstandingt and Prejudices. 

of yielding prodigious harvests. Fruit grows wild in 
any quantity. Qame is in abundance, and food is 
exceedingly cheap. ' I can think of no country in the 
world,' he concludes by asserting, * which offers the 
same advantages to a young man with a small capital 
as Siberia. Whenever I travel in Siberia I always 
think — ^Why is it that our countrymen are sent away 
to the Antipodes in search of a colony ? Here they 
would be nearer home; they can get better land, 
cheaper than in many of our colonies ! They coidd live 
more cheaply, get cheaper labour, and enjoy many 
advantages of civilisation which they would want in 
the colonies.' 

That is not Hussian — that is English testimony. 
Another Englishman who employed many workmen 
in Eussia recently remarked : * Many of our hands 
come from Siberia, but they never remain very long. 
After two or three years they begin to pine for home, 
and when they leave they give no reason except — ** It 
is very good, but not like Siberia ! " ' 

Many Englishmen seem to think that Siberia is a 
large torture chamber — a gigantic quicksilver mine 
— where we send innocent persons to be slowly mur- 
dered. It is, on the contrary, a huge emigration field, 
whither we send criminals with the double object of 
getting rid of them and of supplying a sparsely- peopled 
province with colonists. It may not be a good way 
of dealing with criminals according to your view, but 
at least the charge of too great leniency is quite the 
reverse of what we are usually blamed for. To some 
the sentence ordering them to go to Siberia inflicts no 

Siberia, 215 

disgrace. In their case it is simply equivalent to a 
compulsory passage to one of your colonies. 

The number sent to Siberia, according to the latest 
official report, averages since 1860 about 20,000 per 
annum — ^not a very large proportion out of a popula- 
tion of 84,000,000. In England and Wales, with Uttle 
more than one quarter of the population, you have 
12,000 criminal convictions every year. The evils of 
which General Koznakoff complains are precisely those 
which would never arise if the facts corresponded to 
the EngUsh notion. So little limitation is placed upon 
the liberty of our convicts that numbers escape. In 
Tobolsk, in January, 1876, out of 51,122 exiles only 
34,293 could be found. In Tomsk nearly 5,000 were 
missing out of 30,000. The great mischief of our 
system of pitchforking convicts into Siberia, and tell- 
ing them to do what they please, is that very few of 
them take to honest labour. The country is so rich 
that they can Uve without hard work, and they be- 
come idle, good-for-nothing vagabonds. It is an easy 
way of getting rid of convicts, but it is not good for 
Siberia. M. Koznakoff, the Governor-General, de- 
clares that millions are spent in governing them 
without there being the slightest return for the expen- 
diture in the shape of private or pubUc works. Since 
1870 about four thousand persons a year have been 
exiled for * offences against the Administration,' some 
of whom, of course, are political offenders. But no 
mistake could be greater than to suppose that all these 
poUtical offenders were sent to the quicksilver mines. 
For the most part they are left free to do as they 

216 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

please in certain districts, subject to police surveil- 
lance. As to the quicksilver mines, they are solely 
reserved for murderera and political criminals of the 
worst kind — ^people many of whom in England you 
would have hanged offhand. But as we have abo- 
lished capital punishment, we must do something witli 
our murderers, &c., so we send them to the mines. 

Of course, there may be great abuses in our estab- 
lishments — I wish I could deny that — just as there 
were in New South Wales and Van IMemen's Land 
before you discontinued transportation. I admit 
injustice and mistakes on the part of our authorities 
— authorities are not infallible. But you would be 
wise in not accepting implicitly every libel told 
gainst us by Polish rebels. A few months ago a 
friend sent me a report of the most dreadful cruelties 
which a Fenian prisoner said he had suffered in your 
convict prisons. Believe me, our Poles, when insti- 
gated by their father confessors, are not behind your 
Fenians in the compilation of a catalogue of horrors. 
If merely Russophobes attacked ua I would not make 
even the shortest reply. But the minds of some of 
our friends are evidently put out of ease with these 
horrible l^ends, and I do not like to strengthen our 
enemies' hands by refraining from stating the truth. 

If it is complained that ' I idealise even Siberia,' I 
may quote from an article embodying the results of 
Recent Exploration of the Siberian Coast,' by Cap- 
tain "Wiggins, the adventurous explorer of the 
Arctic regions, whose enterprise in opening up a 
trade route by sea to Siberia has attracted much 

Siberia. 217 

attention in Eussia. As the testimony of an inde- 
pendent witness, I make the following extract : * — 
' Captain Wiggins has had many opportunities during 
his visits of thoroughly studying the system of exile 
from other parts of the Eussian Empire, which is 
such a prominent subject in connection with Siberia, 
and, like others who have personally investigated it, 
he has arrived at conclusions very different from those 
popularly entertained. The captain declares that not 
one-third of these time-service exiles elect to make 
the return journey to their former homes ; they find 
that life is easier and pleasanter in the land to which 
they have been forcibly sent, and they end by 
becoming free settlers in the country of their adop- 
tion. Desperate criminals only are sent to labour in 
the quicksilver mines and for these there is a specially 
severe discipline provided, and " horrors, without 
doubt, exist." ' 

The explorer goes on to say, for many years past 
the desire of the Eussian Government has been to 
forward, by all means in their power, the settlement 
of this portion of their territory, and they have 
learnt that it is good poUcy to take the utmost pos- 
sible care of the lives of the exiles, and to place them 
in the best possible positions for self-maintenance at 
tlie earliest opportunity. With the exception of 
the robbers and cut-throats specially condemned 
to the mines, the exiles are spread about in the 
towns and agricultural districts soon after their 

^ From an article puldiahed on Not. *2l, 1878, by the Newcastle 
Chfonicle, the organ, I am told, of one of the moet prejudiced of Eng^- 
lifth Russophobes. 

218 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

arriTaU and, aa a rule, they are left to shift for them- 
selves. The . supervision over them is slight, but 
toleraUy effectual. The exiles, when quitting for 
any length of time the district to which they are 
assigned, must report their project to the head man, 
and they are then at hberty to go where they please, 
up or down the great rivei* systems of the country, 
but they must not attempt to pass westward towards 
European Bussia. A great nimiber of the Bussian 
exiles and immigrants employ themselves in the mines, 
and Captain Wiggins' experience of the people con- 
vinces him that they are ' a happy, roUicking, joyous 
community — ^well clad, well fed, and well cared for.' 
During the summer months they are able to earn 
sufficient mon^ to provide for the wants of their 
respective households in the long winter; and the 
commencement of the cold season, when they visit 
the town to make their purchases, is generally a time 
of high festivity amongst them. Captain Wiggins 
declares that some exiles are now settled in the nortli 
by the Russian Govemmeut, which, in this particular 
kind of banishment, undertakes certain responsibihties 
with regard to the maintenance of the convicts. Sup- 
plies of rye meal are, in the summer season, for- 
warded to the furthest northern limits where the 
head men are appointed. These officials dispense the 
stores, during the winter, on a sort of credit system, 
to such exiles (or even families of the native tribes) 
as may need it, and in the succeeding summer the 
indebted pai-ties must liquidate the cost price of the 
food they have received in furs, skins, or dried fish. 

Siberia, 219 

Captain Wiggins, unlike most writers on Kussian 
questions, has visited Siberia and seen the country 
with his own eyes. It was, therefore, but natural 
that his evidence should be favourable. More sur- 
prising and unexpected is the testimony as to the 
falsity of the prevailing prejudices which appeared 
in November, 1879, in the Conservative Standard^ 
entitled, 'The Future of Siberia.' It really is 
encouraging to find such truthful remarks as the fol- 
lowing in the columns of a Ministerial organ : — 

Siberia, to the mind of Europe, is associated with nothing 
but horror. One connects it with the crack of Bashkir Cos- 
sack's whip, with the groans of wretched exiles dying— or, 
worse still, living — in the mines of Nertchinsk, and with cold 
and misery. In reality these ideas, though firmly imbedded in 
the English mind, are altogether erroneous if they are to be 
accepted as true of Siberia at large or of the state of matters 
in that country at present. The truth is Siberia is a country 
of such extent that no general description can apply to all of 
it^ and even when the accounts which have reached Europe 
have been true, which in the vast number of cases they were 
not, they related only to the northern part of the territory. 
Siberia is an infinitely richer and finer coimtry than Canada 
or the northern part of America generally. Though the 
Polish exiles and others of a literary turn have not un- 
naturally given it a bad name, they have allowed their own 
sufferings to colour their narrative. In Siberia the Bussian 
peasant can get the * black earth ' soil, and he escapes, imder 
certain conditions, the military service. Doubtless the * un- 
fortunates' who are sent on an average at the rate of 13,000 
per anniun to the penal colonies of Siberia are not pampered 
to any alarming extent. But that they are nowadays 
treated with the severity they were in the times of Peter, 
Catherine, Paul, and even Nicholas, is entirely untrue. 
Indeed, since the accession of the present Tzar, who in early 

220 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

life visited the penal settlements, the bureaucrats' complaint 
is that so mild has the punishment of expatriation become 
that Siberia is losing its terrors. It is, indeed, the locality 
into which the Bussian gaols are annually emptied, and an 
oflFender is sent to that country who would in any other be 
simply sentenced to a few years' imprisonment. In the vast 
number of cases exile to Siberia is a very diflferent matter 
from what banishment to Tasmania or New South Wales 
used to be. In the first place, as a rule, the Russian con- 
victs go from a bad climate to a better, and are in such good 
company that the disgrace of transportation gets much 
modified. Only the third class — criminals of the deepest 
dye — ^work in the mines. These mines are, however, not all 
underground: they may consist of gold washeries, or the 
exile may be set to the almost pleasureable excitement of 
searching for gems. At one time the worst class of convicts 
— usually murderers and particularly offensive politicians — 
were not only compelled to work underground, but they had 
to live there, and — horrible thought — were buried there 
also. No wonder that Siberia got a bad name. But not 
over one-fourth of the Siberian miners are convicts, and a 
recent explorer is even of opinion that the latter are in 
better circumstances physically, and lead quite as comfort- 
able and more moral lives, than the corresponding class of 
free men in America, England or Australia. Society in the 
large towns is pleasant and polished. Banishment to Siberia 
has been overdone, and thus the mischief is righting itself 
by the natural law of compensation. It has long ceased to 
be a disgrace ; it is rapidly ceasing to be a punishment. 

No country in the world, except, perhaps, the valleys of 
the Amazon and the Mississippi, has such a perfect system 
of water commimication as Siberia. The rich meadows near 
the mouth of the Yenessei, even though far within the 
Arctic Circle, astonished the Norwegian walrus-hunters who 
accompanied Professor Nordenskjold. *\NTiat a land God 
has given the Russians ! ' was the half-admiring, half-envious 
exclamation of a peasant seaman who owned a little patch 

Siberia. 221 

among the uplands in the Scandinavian Nordland. Yet 
these few pastures are uncropped and nnscythed. The river 
has good coal-beds and fine forests, and south of the forest 
region level, stoneless plains, covered for hundreds of leagues 
with the richest ' black earth ' soil, only wanting the plough 
of the farmer to yield abimdant harvests. Still further 
south the river flows through a region where the vine grows 
in the open air. Altogether it is believed that by the ex- 
penditiu-e of about one himdred thousand poimds the 
Yenessei could be made navigable, though its tributary, the 
Angora, on the Lake Baikal — an inland sea not much smaller 
than Lake Superior — and the Obi could be connected with 
the Yenessei, and the Yenessei with the Lena. 

Leaving out of account the numerous other Siberian 
rivers all more or less navigable, a coimtry could be thus 
thrown open equal to the combined territories of all the 
rivers wliich flow into the Black Sea, the Sea of Marmora, 
and the Mediterranean. Yet from these rivers flowing into 
the Arctic Ocean, so cheap is produce in their valleys, one of 
which contains over two millions of people, that Captain 
Wiggins ballasted his ship with black lead of fine quality. 
The valleys are full of the most magnificent timber, larch, 
spruce, &c., which is so little in demand that at the town of 
Yenesseik, a ship's mast, 36 inches in diameter at the base, 
18 inches diameter at the top, and 60 feet long, can be 
bought for a sovereign, and any number supplied in a few 
days ; beef costs 2^c2. per lb., and game of all kinds may be 
got in such abimdance as to render mere living cheap enough. 
So abundant is com and hay on the great steppes between 
Tomsk and Tjumen that horses are hired for one halfpenny 
per mile. A ton of salt, which costs in England 158., is sold 
on the Yenessei for 151.; and wheat, which commands 15Z. 
or 162. per ton in London, may be got in any quantity for 
258. per ton. To use the words of Mr. Seebohm, ' a colossal 
fortune awaits the adventurer who is backed by sufficient 
capital, and a properly organised staff, to carry on a trade 
between this country and Siberia, via the Kara Sea.' To- 

222 MisundergtantUngs and Prejudices. 

day, a fntsh market for the disposal of our mann&ctnres, is 
as much required as it vas three centuries ago. Here in 
'frozen Siberia' — miscalled — is a field richer than Central 
Africa, and about as little cultivated as Corea, waiting his 
energy and his knowledge. 




If I were English I would probably be a Liberal ; 
were I an American I would undoubtedly be a Repub- 
lican ; as I am a Russian I am, after all — and * Honi 
soit qui mal y pense ' — a believer in the Autocracy. 

This is no paradox, nor am I inconsistent. At 
Liberal meetings in this country nothing is more 
common than an appeal to the results of Liberalism. 
The greatness and the glory of the Empire of England 
are referred to as a proof of the success of Liberal 
principles. It seems to me quite true. But it is 
equally true that the greatness and glory of the 
Empire of Russia have been indissoluble from the 
autocracy. • 

Mr. Wallace, after several years' close study of 
my country, declares quite truly: 'Never was the 
autocratic power stronger in Russia, or more secure, 
than it is to-day.' Can you say as much of Liberal 
principles in England ? Are you not rather inclined 
to approximate to Russian doctrines ? Is your Pre- 
mier not exalting the Royal prerogative, and your 
Parliament only allowed to discuss trivialities and 
fails accomplis? Your example gives moments of 

224 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

serious hesitation and doubts even to those iu Bussia 
who dream of a Constitution. 

Autocracy has been good for Russia. I doubt 
whether it would be as good for England. Auto- 
cracy without an autocrat, or a constitutionalism 
reduced to a despotism plwi humbug, is not 
attractive to me, and I hope no unkind friend will 
accuse me of endeavouring to popularise absolutism 
in England. ' In submission to despotism,' wrote M, 
dc Tocqueville,' * after having enjoyed hberty, there 
is nothing but d^radation ; but there often enters 
into the submission of a people who have never been 
free a principle of morahty which must not be over- 

The great obstacle to good understanding between 
England and Bussia is that there is no understanding 
at aU of each other's pohtical views. I wish some- 
body else, abler and better informed than I, desired to 
throw some light upon the relations existing between 
the two countries ; but unfortunately amongst my 
countrymen it is considered a positive folly to 
write a word of self-defence or explanation for Eng- 
lish readers, who are generally supposed not to care 
really for our intimate acquaintance. I beg, there- 
fore, the permission to explain as simply as I can 
how it is that we Russians cannot imderstand why our 
devotion to our Emperor — which in the lower classes 
is certainly not weaker than in the higher — should be 
looked down upon by constitutional peoples. If we 
introduced luiiversal suffrage and vote by ballot to- 

■ Remaint of AUxtt de TocqtieviSe, toI. i. p. 266. 

Russian Autocracy. 225 

morrow it would strengthen, not diminish, the Im- 
perial power in Bnssia. 

We believe in our Emperor because we owe to the 
autocracy our national existence and the progress of 
our civilisation. 

When Europe emerged from the dark ages there 
were two Slav nations struggling into being — one 
was Poland, the other Bussia. At first both were 
almost equally anarchic. Poland was richer, more 
populous, nearer to 'Europe,' and had a lustre of 
civilisation which was lacking to Bussia. The latter 
was exposed for centuries to the withering blast of 
Tartar invasions, from which she sheltered her western 
neighbour. To-day Poland no longer exists, espe- 
cially in Germanised Posen, whilst Bussia is one of 
the greatest empires of the world. Why? Be- 
cause Bussians, tutored in the terrible school of ad- 
versity, learned the lesson of identifying themselves 
with an autocracy, and thus formed one strongly- 
united body; whilst anarchic Poland, which clung 
persistently to her divided aristocracy, has been 
blotted out of the map of Europe. Of course we 
are blamed for that. But the Poles attacked Moscow 
before the Bussians took Warsaw ; and even if Bussia 
had as little excuse for conquering Poland as England 
for conquering Ireland, the fate of Poland demon- 
strates the weakness of anarchy and the strength of 
the opposite principle. 

Anarchy was the besetting sin of the Slavs. 
Bussia passed through a frightful experience before 
she learned the necessity of creating that strong central 


226 Migunderstandings and Prejudices. 

power to which, to a very.great extent, slie owes all 
that ahe has. At the dawn of our history the con- 
sciouaness of this national weakness led the Russian 
Slavs, after driving out the Variaga, to call them 
back across the Baltic to maintain order and exercise 
authority in Bussia. If Burik and his successors had 
not divided and re-divided their soldiers and their 
lands amongst thdb- children, Busaia might have 
escaped both the horrors of intestine war and the 
scourge of the Tartar conquest, as well as the neces- 
sity, bom of these troubles, of establishing the 

Unfortunately, Uie law of division prevailed. No 
strong central power existed. In little more than a 
century, as M. Eambaud remarks,' Bussia saw no 
fewer than sixty-four principaUties with 293 rival 
princes, whose feuds occasioned no less than eighty- 
three civil wars. Our unhappy country, convulsed 
by their incessant strife, was the prey of all her 
neighbours. In that period the Polovtzi alone invaded 
Kussian territory forty-rix times. At the close of 
that terrible time retribution came in the shape of the 
Tartar conquest. Bussia was submerged by a tide of 
Asiatic barbarism, and for more than two centuries 
the Russian State almost ceased to exist. 

In the darkness and despair of these awiitl cen- 
turies Russians learnt the necessity of creating and 
obeying implicitly a strong central Government. 
To smite down the Infidel, Bussia's sword must be 
placed in a single hand, and that hand must be 

> Hitfory of BvMia, toI. i. p. KS. 

Russian Autocracy. 227 

nerved with the strength of the whole nation. 
While under the Tartar domination that sword was 
slowly * forged by adverse fates/ until at length it 
was keen and strong for its work. Not until the 
autocratic power was founded were the Tartars van- 
quished and Bussia freed. 

Some people define Eussian autocracy as a Dic- 
tatorship en permanence. Granted ; and the ancient 
Bomans found dictatorship necessary. Machiavelli 
even believed that the dictatorship alone rendered 
possible the continuance of the Eoman Eepublic. 
Nothing but a dictatorship could have saved Bussia 
from her foes. That dictatorship, foimded to rescue 
Europe from Asia and Christendom from the Moslem 
invasion, will not have completed its task until the 
Sultan ceases to rule in Europe, and the last results 
of the Tartar conquest have been obliterated. 

At present neither of these results have been 
attained, although one, fortunately, is not far distant. 

While we stood sentinel on the ramparts of 
Europe, you Westerns, protected by our sacrifices, 
were making rapid progress in civilisation. To 
overtake you we found the dictatorship as necessary 
as it was to get rid of the horde. Before we even 
could start in the race we had to gain elbow-room by 
beating back enemies that threatened to extinguish 
our national existence. As late as 1571, a Tartar 
Khan burnt Moscow and swept 100,000 of her in- 
habitants into slavery. Forty years later our ancient 
capital was destroyed by Poles. The Zaporogues and 
the Cossacks of the Don ravaged our country, and all 

228 Misunder^andings and P^udices^ 

the ouUying provinces were given over to anarchy. 
The Swedes estabhshed themselves at ' Novgorod the 
Great' Thus, when the EngUah were beginning to 
defend ParliamentaJy Government against the Stuarts 
we were still locked in a life-and-death struggle 
for the right to exist. In that struggle, but for the 
absolute power of our Tzars, we had been for ever 
undone. Thanks to that principle, Busaia emei^ed, 
bmiaed and bleeding, but still a nation and a State. 

In Ebigland civilisation has come from below — the 
people led, the nders followed. In Eussia the process 
is reversed. I shall be told that that Is to admit that 
tiie Bussian people were ignorant and destitute of 
civilisation. Yes, they were I Who ever denied it ? 
What better woiild you have been if you had had a 
Tartar Conquest iiatead of a Magna Charta, and 
Englishmen had seen London burnt by Mongob in- 
stead of witnessing the dispersion of the Armada P 

But Bussian civilisation has to contend against 
another difficulty, ftx)m which you are entirely free. 
Civilisation, from its name, is the product of cities. 
Bussia is an Empire of villages. The enormous ex- 
panse of territory over which our population is 
scattered — an expanse all the more formidable by 
the scarcity o| good roads — renders spontaneous 
civilisation impossible. Bussia thus could only be 
civilised from above, and it is the glory of our 
Emperors that they applied themselves strenuously 
to the work. 

One of my English friends — who is, perhaps, a 
little tinged with Bepublicuiism — declares that for 

Russian Autocracy. 229 

three centuries there has been only one King in Eng- 
land who was worth his rations, and he was a Dutch- 
man ; and he added that since William of Orange, when 
they did more than draw their rations they always 
did mischief. My fiiend, no doubt, exaggerates. 
But with us it is quite different. Of course there 
have been exceptions ; but our Emperors have been 
the real reformers of Bussia. Peter the Great — 
' that noblest example of history,* as Mr. Cobden 
styled him — ^was but the most striking figure among 
many Emperors and Empresses who laboured without 
ceasing to the best of their abihty to elevate, to 
educate, to civilise their people. And amidst what 
difficulties I As a rule the Kussian worships his old 
traditions and customs of former days ; he idolises 
his past, he distrusts innovations. * Novelty brings 
calamity ' was not merely a proverb, it was almost an 
article of faith. Yet upon such people Peter turned 
the full light of Western civihsation. Even in our 
days you often meet Eussians who reproach him for 
having done so, for not having simply developed our 
own national elements, without any attempt to wrap 
us up in Western mantles. * Why should we imitate 
other nations ? ' they exclaim ; * Their superiority is 
more apparent than real,' &c. Peter the Great, 
however, pursued his own views upon the matter, 
and it is not for Westerns to ignore his innovations. 
There was nothing too great or too small to escape 
his attention. It was he who published the first 
Russian newspaper, and created the modern Bussian 
civil alphabet. Like some mythic hero of the dim 

230 Mimmderstartdings and Prejudices, 

and distant past, this man of the seventeenth century 
appeared to incarnate all the enei^es of a mighty 
nation. Deserted by friends, betrayed by those of 
bis own household, confronted alike by foreign foe 
and internal rebellion, he never wavered, he never 
flinched. Sometdmes a despairing cry broke from 
him, when baffied by some more than ordinary dis- 
play of stupidity, but it was only for a moment ; the 
next he was hard at work, receiving Prussian Am- 
bassadors at the topsaU of the mainmast, digging 
canals, publishing books, building ships, never resting 
in his efforts to civilise his country. By turns pilot, 
smith, labourer, carpenter, astronomer, manufacturer, 
artilleiyman, ' he worked harder than a bourlak.' 
As our greatest poet, Alexander Pouahkin, wrote : — 

'WitH halm Aod hammer, pen and aword, 

He Btamped his aool on Ruaa&'H etorj, 
And like a workmui for reward, 

Worked night and da; for Ruaaia'a rIoij.' 

Peter was not the first, neither was he the last of 
the Emperors to whom Kussia owes reforms, which 
she could not and would not have introduced under 
a Parliamentary system. In the present reign the 
emancipation of the serfs and the liberation of the 
Southern Slavs are achievements even more brlUiant 
than the founding of St. Petersburg and the victory of 
Poltava.' Our Emperor is true to the traditions of 

' Tranalated by Madame A. B j in her Traiulalitmt from 

Riuiian and Orrmim Fottt, pabliabed at Baden-Baden, 1878. 

' ' The present Soverdgn bt Ruada, hy the emancipation of aerfs, 
Bud to reach forty millions in number, hu placed himself on the first 
rank of the philimthrapie legialatora of the world.' — Mr. Gladstone, 
' Rimians in TiirkesUn ' (Con/emjiomry Renew, Nov. 1876, p. 877). 

Eussian Autocracy. 23X 

the autocracy ; and in the ftiture, as in the past, we 
expect confidently the power of the Emperor will 
enable Bussia to take even larger strides in civilisation 
than if we substituted for him a Parliament elected 
on an English model. 

We firmly believe that had it not been for the 
concentration of power, which enabled us with 
greater ease to introduce at once desired reforms all 
over the realm, we might never have been able to 
play the grand role befitting the only Slav country at 
once free, independent, and strong. 

Eussians are not easily forgetful. If they remem- 
ber well the harm done, they also keep in mind all 
their obUgations. Now, the magnificent reforms in- 
troduced by our present Emperor have claims upon 
our confidence. He is as good a Eussian, as devoted 
to the grand destinies of his country, as the best 
amongst us. We only want to add to his omnipotence 
the advantages of omniscience. In our history we 
have examples of how this might be done which 
might be known by anybody who cares to study the 
subject. The Zemskie Sobory to which I refer were a 
natural development of our political growth. The 
so-called Zemskie Sobory were a kind of Assembly of 
different representatives — of deputies — not a legis- 
lative, but a consultative body, composed of the high 
clergy, nobility, and merchants. When the Tzar 
John the Fourth, three hundred years ago, had to 
give an answer to Poland, and to accept or refuse 
tlie truce proposed by the King, he consulted the 
Assembly, or Sober, which rejected the truce, 

232 Miaunderstandings and Pr^udices. 

advised the prosecutioii of the war, and offered the 
Tzar men and money to bring it to a succesaful con- 
clusion. These Zemskie Sobory played a great and 
interesting part in our country. ' To mention only 
one instance, in 1598, on the deaUi of Feodor, it 
formed a kind of Diet, and offered Boris Godounoff 
the throne of Russia. 

There is a nobility in Eussia — ^it Dever had, how- 
ever, the privileges of your aristocracy : the privileges 
it had have disappeared almost entirely since the 
emancipation of the serfs and the general military 
conscription. In reality, Bussia now is a democratic 
country,' and a ' House of Lords ' in Russia would be 
a very ridiculous innovation indeed. In the democracy 
lies the great strength of the autocracy. Alexis de 
Tocqueville says : — ' A democratic people tends to- 
wards centralisation as it were by instinct. The 
citizens being so nearly equal among themselves, are 
naturally led to place the details of administration^n 
the hands of the only power which stands, forth con- 
spicuously in an elevated position above them all, 
viz., the central government of the State.'* 

Under Anne Ivanovna, an oligarchic Consti- 
tution, framed by the Princes Galitzine and Dol- 
gorouky, which destroyed the autocracy, was set 

' Mr. Einglfthe, in the preftce to ilie mith edition of his Invation of 
Ike Crimea, mjs : ' A veij sUe Uid interegting ucount of tlie political 
RuBsis of the present Aty wu giTan to tlie world on October 26, 1876, 
bj Prince M. Mestchenk;. Tbe Prince ueures his readers that Russia 
is DOW a Democracy, with " liberty, equality, and iratemity " all com- 
plete ; but it is loyal, be Mys, and religious, and not therefore deserving 
to be cnnfounded with the Democracy of the French Revolution.' 

' Jlimnim of Alejit rff Tofqiifti/h, vnl. i. p. 242. 

Russian Autocracy. 233 

aside by a popular movement, which demanded the 
re-establishment of the autocracy in the name of the 
people and in the interests of progress. In Poland 
the aristocracy crushed the people beneath the yoke 
of 100,000 despots. In Eussia they had only one 
master, and that master was, and is at this moment, 
regarded as the Tribune of the People, to whom they 
only need to make known their wrongs to obtain 
immediate redress.^ If they suflfer injustice it is not 
because it is the will of the Emperor, but because, as 
the popular proverb says, * Heaven is high, and the 
Tzar is too far off.' That this deep, unalterable, 
unshaken conviction of the Bussian peasants in the 
goodness of their Emperor has been without cause is 
as much opposed to the teachings of history as it is 
logically absurd. 

The example of the PoUsh Constitution strength- 
ened the advocates of autocracy in Bussia in former 
dfiys, just as Lord Beaconsfield's unceremonious poUcy 
paralyses now in Bussia people who once had faith 
in Constitutionalism, Whenever any attempt was 
made to limit the autocratic power of our Emperors 
in the past it was checked by a reference to the 
anarchy which the Pacta Conventa occasioned in 
Poland. The nation at large not only was not 
opposed to autocracy, but defended it and supported 
it with all its energy and power. 

To-day in Bussia Liberals are often silenced by a 
reference to the Nihilists. The Poles in the seven- 

* For a strilnDg English testimony to this effect^ see Herbert Barry's 
Tiustia in 1870, p. 201. 

23i iiimmderstandings and Prejudices. 

teenth and the Nihilista in the nineteeDtb are the 
drunken helots employed by Kussian Conservatism to 
deter the natives from drinking the dangerous waters 
of liberalism and reform. The first can easily be 
understood ; the second ia quite unjust. Nihilism is 
not Liberalism. A Liberal has a positive code of 
principles before him, a pohtical religion, a stem 
national duty. A Nihilist scorns and derides those 
who care either for their country or for those things 
which constitute the greatest blessings of all civilised 
countries. A Nihilist is an anarchist in the widest 
sense of the word. To those who are opposed to 
every reform, every real progress, it naturally appears 
as an easy way of making a terrible mess of aU the 
different schools and tendencies of liberalism by 
declaring they all lead to Nihihsm. Does it not 
happen sometimes in England that the Conservative 
party does not disdain to describe as Republican and 
Revolutionary every measure which threatens a 
cherished abuse or attacks a vested interest? So 
with us, men who would die for their country and 
their Emperor are represented sometimes as dan- 
gerous and most wicked merely because they dare to 
have their own views upon some separate questions. 

The great democratic principle which it needed a 
French Revolution to establish in the West, * La 
carrihre ouverte aux talents,^ was established in Russia 
almost by itself, and always supported by our 
crowned heads. Our history abounds with instances 
in which men and women have risen from the lower 
ranks to the highest offices of State. Peter the 
Great's wife, Catherine I., was taken from the 

nussian Autocracy. 235 

humblest spheres ; Lomonossoff was a peasant ; 
Menshikoff began hfe as a pastrycook ; Speransky 
was the son of a poor village curate, &c. Nor was 
the career closed to talented men because they were 
not Eussian, Our autocracy, more free from pre- 
judices than some more constitutional systems, has 
thrown open the highest offices in the State to men 
of all nationaUties. Le Fort, Peter's admiral, was a 
Swiss ; Bruce and Gordon, his trusted generals, were 
Scotchmen ; Munich was a German. In Catherine's 
reign the officer who led the attack which annihilated 
the Turkish fleet in the Bay of Chesma was an 
Enghshman. In the last war, as in the Crimean, 
high commands were held by Armenians and Poles, 
and the array before Batoum was said to be com- 
manded by a Montenegrin, not to speak of Germans 
and Finns who abound in our State service. 

On the field of Poltava, at which, ss M. Eambaud 
says, ' the Slav race, so long humiliated, made a 
triumphal entry on to the stage of the world,' Peter 
tlie Great addressed his soldiers in words which truly 
described the relation between our Emperors and 
the people : — ^ You must not think it is for Peter you 
fight ; no ! it is for the country, it is for our orthodox 
faith, for the Church of Qod I As for Peter, know 
that he is ready to sacrifice himself for a prosperous 
and glorious future for Kussia.' Catherine the Great 
instructed the Assembly of Eepresentatives which 
she summoned to draw up the new code that * the 
nation is not made for the Sovereign, but the 
Sovereign for the nation.' 

The autocracy is a weapon by which democracy 

236 Miaunderstaftdmga and Prejudices. 

smites down its en^niea, and it is the instrument 
which, after securing the emancipation of the serf, 
is destined to achieve still further reforms. 

Nor, pardon me, do I see why we should be 
described as ' inappropriate instruments ' * for secur- 
ing the liberation of our co-religionists, the Slavs 
of the Balkan, because we believe in a system of 
government which freed Bussia from the yoke of the 
Tartars, and enabled us to take giant strides iu 
civilising and educating our people. 

"We beheve, with Goethe, that the beat of all 
Governments is that which beat teaches self-govern- 
ment, but a permanent head of a strong centrahsed 
Administration is sometimes a necessity even for the 
development of self-government. In this respect 
Eussia may compare favourably with England, for 
we have rural municipalities elected by universal 
suffrage, established by the Empei-or Nicholas, and I 
suppose I am not wrong in saying that you have no 
such elective authorities in your country districts. 

The centrahsed administration of Bussia is com- 
plained of by many who complain still more bitterly 

' 'Agieatworkof liberatioiihubeeiidoDeuiwMcli weharehsidiio 
part. Bnt bitter u is the mottifiealion with which I for one reflect upon 
that exeliuion, I thuik God that the work has been done. It has been 
done in one sense, perhape, by the moat ioftppropriata of inatrumeiitfl.' 
Ourioualy enough the Dewsp^)er which reported that speech b; one of 
jour stateamen contained a despatch 6om Bulgaria, meotioDing that the 
liberated Bulgarians hod jost passed on oddreas of gratitude to those 
Bud 'inappropriate inatruments ' of their emancipation. Oompare the 
Duke of ArgjU : — ' Russia's ancient and hereditary hostilit; to the Moe- 
lem Eni[nre of the Turks has made her power a JUtmg itulrummt b 
the gradual deetruction of the moat deaolating dominion that baa ever 
cursed the world.' — Salient Queition, vol. iL p. 264, 

Russian Autocracy. 237 

of the excesses and abuses which spring from the 
independent powers given to the rural communes, 
Bussia needs a strong Executive in order to civilise 
her people ; but our democratic Empire is not so 
centralising or so despotic in many respects as the 
democratic KepubUc of Prance. In Prance le per- 
sonnel administratif changes ; le pouvoir administratif 
remains much the same under Empire, Eepublic, or 
any shape of Monarchy. English people are always 
abusing centralisation, and always centralising ; but 
decentralisation is not always a proof of civilisation. 
M. Thiers, whose words deservedly command atten- 
tion in England, was an enthusiastic eulogist of a 
system of centraUsation to which that of Eussia can- 
not be compared for stringency. *The wisest and 
most complete system of administration,' he told your 
Mr. Senior,^ * is that of Prance, where there is not a 
single independent local authority ; where the central 
power knows and superintends, and, in fact, regulates, 
the concerns of every conmiune, and where every 
pulsation of the heart of France is instantly felt in 
the Pyrenees and on the Ehine.* 

As believers in progress and in liberty, we think 
that more progress and more freedom is possible 
in Russia at the present time, by placing supreme 
power in the hands of an enlightened autocrat, than 
by vesting it in an assembly which either must be 
elected by a minority of the people or by a majority 
which can hardly read and write.' 

' CcnversaiicnSy toI. i. p. 135. 

^ Even in England the opinion of the majority is not alwa3r8 the 

238 Mimnderstatidings and Prejudices. 

' It is the everlasting privil^e of the foolish to be 
governed by the wiae ; that,* Bays Mr. Carlyle, ' is the 
first right of man.' Bussians are almost always of the 
opinion of Mr. Carlyle. 

As for the power of the Crown, ' the majesty of 
the people,* and the other catch-words of our judges, 
does not Lord Beaconsfield declare, * The House of 
Commons is the House of a few ; the Sovereign is the 
sovereign of alL The proper leader of the people is 
the individual who sits upon the throne ' ? 

wisMt. Indeed duDulce of SonuTMt, to lu« recent 'Reflectioiu,'goMM 
ftr u to aaj : ' Until k late period in tlia Iiiatorj of the eountry, a re*l 
T«prewnbttiou (^ the n^jcri^ of the peo^ vonU bare been % natiookl 




The other day I was favoured with a call from 
one of your M.P.s. My visitor looked very solemn 
and dignified, and spoke in a monotonous, didactic 
way concerning Russia and her many shortcomings. 
It was rather amusing at the first, for he displayed 
such a wonderful ignorance of the most elementary 
facts that he might have been taken for Robinson 
Crusoe, fresh from the desolate island where he spent 
so many years with no other company than that of 
his famous Friday. 

He began : * We must keep a very sharp look out ; 
Russia is not to be trusted. She is a standing danger 
to us, both in India and in this country.* 

* Oh, yes,' I repKed, for I am now quite familiar 
with such pleasant observations. * Why should 
you not keep a sharp look out ? Only I do not see 
why you should think England so very weak, both in 
Asia and in Europe, that she is in such danger from 
any foreign country.' 

' Russia is dangerous,' answered my visitor, 
' because she has no Constitutional Government. 

240 Mimmderstandings and Prejudices. 

We, in England, can only have confidence in Oonati- 
tutional States.' 

' Yea ; I know your views on these matters,' I 
replied. * And I dare say your dear ally Turkey 
has prospered amazingly since she adopted your insti- 
tutions I ' 

* Why, of course, it's better to have a Constitu- 
tion,' rejoined he. ' It makes countries strong and 

* Then, it is because you want to see Russia 
stronger and more powerful,' I timidly ventured to 
suggest, ' that you wish us to adopt a Constitution P 
I thought she was too strong already for your moral 

The inconsiatency of my visitor was common 
enough to pass unnoticed here, but it often strikes 
foreigners. Those who profess to fear us most, 
and who certainly seem to entertain anything but 
friendly feelings towards us, are the most imperious in 
tendering their \inasked-for advice to adopt Constitu- 
tionalism as a sovereign remedy for all our ailments, 
real or imaginary. The advice may be good, but it 
comes from a auspicious source. Nor ai'e counseb 
accepted the more readily when prefaced by insults. 

Bo you know that in Bussia there is a conviction 
widely spread all over the country that the reason 
why European Governments insisted so strongly on a 
Constitution for young Bulgaria was in order to 
embarrass her development, and as much as possible 
to raar Russia's work ? 

Nevertheless, it is true that, if the Russian people 

Constitutionalism in Russia. 241 

had been consulted last year, it would have been the 
worse for the English Cabinet. No power but the 
autocracy could have compelled our victorious army 
to halt within sight of Constantinople. Eussians did 
not wish to retain Constantinople ; but they longed 
to dictate peace there, and march in triumph through 
its streets. 

It was a national aspiration, and the disappoint- 
ment has occasioned natural regret amongst all 

Last year I met General Grant, the American 
ex-President, in Pai-is. Almost the first thing he 
asked was, * Can you explain how it happened that 
the Bussians did not occupy Constantinople, when 
they had it entirely in their hands ? ' 

* Alas ! ' I replied, ' I have no good explanation 
to give. We never expected such a voluntary abdi- 
cation of power. In fact, some of our military 
people telegraphed to Moscow, saying, " To-morrow 
Constantinople will be occupied for several days!" 
It is difficult to give you an idea of the disap- 
pointment throughout all Bussia when it was found 
out that Constantinople, after all, was not to be the 
place where we were to dictate peace. The general 
conviction in Bussia is, that our Government, misled 
by news from abroad, telegraphed orders to our 
generals not to advance.' 

General Grant, who was listening attentively, 
smiled and said, * Well, I can only say one thing ; had 
I been one of your generals I would have put the 


242 Migunderttandings and IWfudiea. 

order in my pocket and opoied it at' Constantiiiople 
three or four days later.' 

*Test* I rejoined, 'it was a great trial for our 
national feelings, and we feel sure that nobody on 
earth will ever thank us for that unnecessary ccm- 

The same day I dined with M. Emile de Oirardin, 
where sero^ raninent guests were assembled. I 
repeated Gkneral Ghi^nt's conversation. 'Are you 
surprised at his remark ? ' several persons asked me 
at the same time, and using almost the same expres- 
sions. ' It's unnecessary to say how little we liked 
the G^erman promenade through Paris, but we under- 
stood, nevertheless, that the German Government 
could not deprive its troops of so legitimate a satis- 

I heard, on very good authority, that Prince 
Bismarck, on learning that Bussia, after all, was not 
going to occupy Constantinople, exclaimed with 
rather an uncomplimentary emphasis, ' A^^'n, mii den 
Leuten ist nickts anzufangen ' (No, there is no doing 
anything with those people!). The German Chan- 
cellor, in his heart of hearts, was naturally pleased 
with every mistake on our part, but as a good po- 
htical chess-player, he fett impatient at anybody 
taking a wrong step. 

All these remarks often come back to my memory. 
Had the Eussian people been consulted, the English 
Government would never have had the glorification 
of getting from the Russian Government the conces- 

Constitutionalism in Russia. 243 

sions which it longed for so much, but for which it is 
so Uttle grateful. 

Some St. Petersburg officials laugh at our regrets, 
and call it childish sentimentaJism. ^Eussia,' they 
exclaim, 'has got what was really important, and 
does not care particularly about what are, after all, 
only apparent victories.' Now we, Eussian Slavo- 
philes, have notions of our own, as far as victories 
are concerned, and what practical people care for is 
not exactly our chief object in life. But I grant 
that English Eussophobes did not gain much by our 
concession either from their point of view or from 
the point of view of our diplomatists. 

You could not indulge in a greater delusion than 
to imagine, because we Eussian Slavophiles support 
the autocracy, that therefore we have no opinions of 
our own, and do not care to express them. We do 
not share your impUcit faith in Constitutional Govern- 
ment. We abide by our national traditions. We 
are guided by the teachings of our history, to which 
most of our advisers are quite indiflerent. We trust 
our Emperor. We know his readiness to serve his 
country, and our trust in him has not been rooted in 
our hearts without strong arguments and eloquent 
facts. We obey him even when, as in the hoped-for 
temporary occupation of Constantinople, his command 
destroys our most cherished aspirations. But, at the 
same time, we wish to make known our sentiments, 
and therefore we desire the complete freedom of the 
press and the re-estabUshment of the 2iemskie Sobory. 

Of the former I need say nothing, excepting that 

R 2 

244 Misunderstandings and IWjudices. 

the strange use you make of it Bometimes in England 
inclines some Russians to make the mistake of congra- 
tulating themselves that they are without it. 

. Of the latter, so little is known in England, that I 
may be pardoned if I explain how modest are the 
wishes of the Eussian national party. The word 
* Sobor ' means an assembly, a gathering ; ' Zemskie 
Soboryy assemblies from all the land, a kind of national 
assembly, generally summoned when the country was 
in want of an honest, frank advice. It was not a per- 
manent institution like your Parliament, which to us 
appears to be more a kind of chatting club, where 
people are obliged to make speeclies, though they 
know very often that they have very little to say 
and that they are scarcely listened to. We admire 
that institution of yours, but merely from a literary 
point of view. 

There is not one country in the world whose 
example could be blindly followed by Russia. Each 
has its drawbacks ; and Russians believe they will do 
well to remain faithful to their own institutions.' Our 

' A weU-iofonned English mui, wiitiiig on lulion afikira in the Sew 
Quarttrly Rtvirw for J&nnarj, J880, makw some olwerTatioDa od PmIw- 
mentarj goTemmeDt, whicli contaJn tratlia too often ignored in Engliah 
critidsma of countries vithout Fftrlisinentsry institutions. He mji: — 
' Among a people where the halit of working together for ■ common 
public end ia little developed, Puiiamantarj inatitutjona may themselres 
become the Terj beat school of selfishness snd corruption. Those who 
hold the comfortable theoty that if once ;ou give a people free institu- 
tions all the rwt will come of it«elf, have only to look at the Italian 
Chamber to be undeceived. It is not the off-hand judgment of a hoetile 
criticism, but it is tbe deliberate opinion of the best and most serious and 
most experienced Italians, expreeeed over and over sgun of late vean is 
books, iu pamphlets, in speeches, in newspapers, and in conversation, that 
the Itnlian Chambrr. a* it now i>tandii, iIopk not aninrer tlir- ends for 

Constitutionalism in Ettssia. 245 

present Emperor has never deceived us. As I said in 
my last letter, we do not want to impair his omnipo- 
tence, we only wish to confer upon him the advantage 
of omniscience. We want him to come into closer 
contact with his people, to see our wants, our short- 
comings, to know the fiailure of some of his officials, 
their bad faith, and their neglect of their duties. The 
latter naturally are afraid of that close contact, and 
do their best (and for us their worst) to conceal facts 
which it is for the honour and welfare of Kussia our 
Emperor should know. The Zemskie Sobory would 
answer that purpose. 

It is only those ignorant of Eussian history, or men 
estranged by foreign influence from their own country, 
who see in the plea for the re-establishment of the 
Zemskie Sobory an attack upon the autocracy. His- 
tory proves, on the contrary, that the will of the whole 
Eussian people has always been directed to the support 

which Parliamentary gOTemment is established. Unless there is a change, 
it is not too soon to say that Parliamentary institutions cannot possibly 
last in Italy. The feeling of indignation at the futility of them as they 
have been worked of late is one that is spreading. The disbelief in them 
as a means of solving the social and economical problems which are the 
most urgent questions for the country is becoming more generaL The 
fact is that Parliamentary govemment, in its modem form, is about 
as much a national product as is the Church of England. To suppose 
that when transplanted to a wholly different soil, among a race whose 
character, sentiment, history, and traditions are thoroughly unlike our 
own, it will produce the same results, is agunst all experience. It is 
not wonderful that the prestige of the English Parliament should have 
imposed itself on other nations. But to copy its practice without wide 
alterations and without careful adaptation to the needs of each country 
can only work mischief. It needs no conjuror to tell us that either there 
must be a radical change in the mode in which the Italian Chamber dis- 
charges its duties, or else that the existence of Parliamentary government 
in Italy will shortly be in the gravest periL' — New Quarterly Magaune, 
No. 26, New Series, pp. 71, 00, 01. 

246 Misunderetandinga and Prejudices. 

of that form of government, even when an aristocratic 
faction tried to undo it. 

There waa a atriking illustration of this at the be- 
ginning of the reign of the Empress Anne Jvanovna. 
She was living at Mitau, when an aristocratic depu- 
tation offered her the Bussian throne on the condition 
that she should accept an oligarchic Constitution. 
She accepted it on these terms. Some time after 
reaching Moscow she summoned a Zemskie Sobory. 
'Let her keep to our institutions I ' exclaimed the 
Assembly, and they pressed upon her to resume the 
absolute power. * What I * she exclaimed to one of 
her minister-conspirators, ' then the conditions sent 
me through you were not the will of the nation? 
Then you have deceived me?' And thus, by the 
will of the people expressed through the Zemskie 
Sobory, the oligarchic Constitution was replaced by 
the old autoci-acy. 

No Euaaian Emperor can doubt of the support of 
hie country ; his greatest power Uea in the confidence 
of his people. 

Russia, Uke every great country which has not 
given up her high aspirations and lofty feelings, has 
moments of self-sacrifice, of a disregard of practical 
interests. Such was the case in the Servian and 
Turkish wars of the last three years ; but, as a rule, 
Eussiana are not so simple as you fancy. There must 
be something in their devotion to autocracy ; it's not 
so bhnd and irrational as people suppose, or they would 
not so often have insisted upon it. 

There are officials in Russia who, as I said already. 

Constitutionalism in Russia. 247 

are eager to prevent these Assemblies, who want to 
estrange the Emperor from his people, who some- 
times take measures which are as nonsensical as 
unjust. But facts of that sort happen in the most 
constitutional and angeUc countries in the world. We 
have ' red-tapists * who could be a good match for 
some of yours. 

Do not forget that to these National Sobory, 
which were originated by our Tzars themselves, 
Kussia owes the Bomanoff dynasty, which was 
founded by one of them 276 years ago. In 1613, 
after the Great War, in which Prince Pojarsky 
and the butcher Minine deUvered Eussia from the 
Poles, the Sobor assembled at Moscow and placed 
Michel Eomanoff on the throne. Five years later, 
when the Poles were threatening again to attack 
Moscow, the Sobor again assembled, and the unity 
between the Tzar and the people was strikingly de- 
monstrated. ' I am ready,' said the Monarch, * to 
suffer hunger in besieged Moscow and to fight the 
aggressors, but you must do the same for me.' The 
Assembly, with true Eussian spirit, responded enthu- 
siastically to the appeal, and preparations were at 
once made for a national resistance to the common 

The important part played by the Sobory is some- 
times forgotten, even in Eussia. In 1627 the Cossacks 
of the Don, having captured Azoff, offered it to Eussia ; 
our Tzar would not accept it until he had ascertained 
the opinion of the Sobor. It was summoned. The 
nobles were in favour of accepting the proposed gift ; 

248 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

the clergy and the merchants, on the other hand, 
opposed its acceptance. The voice of the Sobor was 
then given against the annexation of Azoff, and the 
annexation was accordingly refused. This was 250 
years ago, and in 'barbarous, despotic, aggressive 
Bussia ! ' 

Tell me, when last year your Government seized 
Cyprus, was there as much regard paid to the Par- 
liament of civilised, constitutional, unaggressive 
England ? 

After the seventeenth century the Sobory were 
not often summoned. In the latter part of the 
eighteenth, however, a remarkable assembly sat in 
Moscow discussing the new code which Catherine the 
Great was anxious to compile. It was not called 
Sobor, but the Great Legislative Commission, and it 
was virtually a Kussian representative Parliament, 
only not a permanent one. Curiously enough it con- 
tained exactly the same number of members as your 
present House of Commons. The following is the de- 
scription of its constitution from M. Alfred Kambaud's 
EBstory : — 

The Commission was composed of deputies from all the 
services of the State, from all the orders and all the races of 
the Empire. Besides the delegates from the Senate, the 
Synod, and the colleges, and the Courts of Chancery, the 
nobles elected a representative for each district, the citizens 
one for every city, the free colonists one for every province, 
the soldiers, militia, and other fighting men also one for each 
province; the Crown peasants, the fixed tribes, whether 
Christian or not, equally elected one for each province. The 
deputation of the Cossack armies was fixed by their atamans. 

Constitutionalism in Russia. 249 

Six hundred and fifty-two deputies assembled at Moscow, 
officials, nobles, citizens, peasants, Tartars, Kalmucks, Lapps, 
Samoyedes, and many others. Each man was to be fur- 
nished with full powers and with papers compiled by at 
least five of the electors. They were exempted for ever firom 
all corporal punishments, and were declared inviolable dur- 
ing the session.' 

It held 200 sittings and many important discus- 
sions upon economical, municipal, social, and political 
matters. After sitting for two years, the Empress was 
reluctantly compelled, by the outbreak of the Turkish 
war, to break up the Assembly. In dismissing it, she 
bore testimony to its utility. 

The Commission for the Code has given me hints for all 
the Empire. I know now what is necessary, and with what I 
should occupy myself. It has elaborated all parts of the 
legislation, and has distributed the affairs under heads. I 
shDuld have done more without the war with Turkey, but a 
unity hitherto unknown in the principles and methods of 
discussion has been introduced. 

That remarkable Commission, in which, as Catherine 
wrote to Voltaire, * the Orthodox was sitting between 
the heretic and the Mussulman, all three listening to 
the voice of an idolater, and aU four consulting how 
to render their conclusion palatable to aU,' was the 
last representative assembly of that kind which has 
met in Eussia. 

In Poland, however, the Emperor Alexander, after 
the war with Napoleon, established a Constitution with 
a representative Diet. In opening that Diet, in 1818, 
the Emperor spoke in praise of representative institu- 

* niUory of RuMia^ vol. ii. p. 130. 

250 Misunderstandings and Pryudices. 

tions. He said : ' I hope to prove to the contemporary 
kings that the liberal institutions, which they pretend 
to confound with the disastrous doctrines which in 
these days threaten the social system with a frightful 
catastrophe, are not a dangerous illusion, but that, 
reduced in good faith to practice, and directed in a 
pure sphrit towards conservative ends and the good of 
humanity, they are perfectly allied to order, and the 
best security for the happiness of nations/ 

We are certainly not going to throw mud upon 
our Constitutionalists. Some of them misunderstood 
their country, but they were men of very noble, self- 
sacrificing principles, of very high and lofty ideas — 
especially the majority of those who were known as the 
Decembrists. But, unfortunately for them, they mis- 
took the spirit of their nation. When they urged the 
people to cry for a Constitution, some of their follow- 
ers understood Constitution to refer to Constantine's 
wife — a Polish lady for whom he had given up his 
claims to the throne ! 

Our ideas are much more reasonable and much 
more practical; and the re-establishment of the 
Zemskie Sobory perhaps would be not less useful 
than the imposing Constitution generously sketched 
out for us in some foreign newspapers. 

We Kussians may be very mistaken in our adhesion 
to the autocracy ; but that is not the opinion of your 
Prime Minister, for he wrote long ago : * The tendency 
of advanced civilisation is in truth to pure Monarchy, 
and in an enlightened age the Monarch on the throne, 
free from the vulgar prejudices and the corrupt inte- 

Constitutionalism in Russia. 251 

rests of the subject, becomes again Divine.'^ And, 
again, he says : * There is a whisper rising in this 
country ' — even in England — * that Loyalty is not a 
phrase, Faith not a delusion, and Popular Liberty 
something more diffusive and substantial than the 
profane exercise of the sacred rights of sovereignty 
by political classes ! ' * 

' The passage from which I take this extract is placed in the mouth 
of Sidonia in * Ooningsby.' It is curious as showing tliat in the opinion 
of the English Prime Minister, so far from the freedom of the press 
undermining the Monarchy, the establishment of an autocratic govern- 
ment follows as a natural consequence from the growth of the power of 
the press : — ' The tendency of advanced civilisation is, in truth, to pure 
Monarchy. Monarchy is, indeed, a government which requires a high 
degree of civilisation for its full development It needs the support of 
free laws and manners, and of a widely-diffused intelligence. Political 
compromises are not to be tolerated except at periods of rude transition. 
An educated nation recoils from the imperfect vicariate of what is called 
a representative government. Your House of Conunons, that has ab- 
sorbed all other powers in the State, will, in all probability, fall more 
rapidly than it rose. Public opinion has a more direct, a more compre- 
hensive, a more efficient organ for its utterance than a body of men 
sectionally chosen. The Printing Press is a political element unknown 
to classic or feudal times. It absorbs in a great degree the duties of the 
Sovereign, the Priest, the Parliament ; it controls, it educates, it dis- 
cusses. That public opinion, when it acts, would appear in the form of 
one who has no class interests. In an enlightened age the Monarch on 
the throne, free from the vulgar prejudices and the corrupt interests of 
the subject, becomes again Divine I ' — Contti^tfty, book v. ch. 8. 

« Syhilj book vi. ch. 13. 

252 Mminderstandings and Prejudices. 



No words, written or spoken, can express, even 
slightly, the feeling3 of horror and indignation felt by 
Russians at the news of the monstrous attempt to 
destroy our Emperor's life. To us such a crime is 
almost parricide. That a second time within a single 
year such an attempt should be made fills our hearts 
with humiliation and covers us with shame. 

In the midst of our distress it adds little to our 
comfort that in some parts of Europe such deeds are 
hailed with unconcealed satisfaction. In England 
there is perceptible behind the conventional ex- 
pression of indignation a sardonic chuckle of satis- 
faction. Of course, it is very wicked, all your papers 
say, this attempted assassination ; but it is to be 
hoped that it will lead to the abandonment of Russia's 
Slavonic mission, the modification of Russia's auto- 
cratic Constitution, or some other result desii-ed by 
our censors. They would not commit the crime, oh 
no ! But, as it is committed, they do their best to 
extract political capital out of it. 

This eager moralising has naturally a very bad 
effect in Russia. You do not know how widely the 

The Attempt on the Emperor. 253 

suspicion prevails amongst our people that these 
Nihilist outrages are due to foreign instigation. 
Kightly or wrongly, our people believe that the 
foreigners, Jews certainly not excluded, supply funds 
for the Terrorists.^ Our war for the liberation of the 
Christians in the East rendered the Jews more hostile 
to us than ever.* In Kussia we generally think them 
only consistent with their religion, and thus they are 
naturally ready to injure their religious enemies. 
Therefore, there is a great feeling of distrust towards 
them, and they do not enjoy all the civil rights of the 
Cliristian natives. Those who defend them in this 
country, for instance, generally declare them to be 

inconsistent, and friendly to the Christians in other 


* Some English friends protest that it is incredible that the Jews could 
be allied with the Nihilists or Anarchists. Permit me to remind them 
what the Earl of Beaconsfield wrote of the part played by the Jews in 
1848; in his political biography of Lord George Bentinck. Speaking of 
that still recent 'outburst of destructiye forces which had ravaged 
Europe/ Mr. Disraeli, himself of Jewish descent, declared that out- 
break would never have attained such proportions but for the 'fiery 
energy and teeming resources ' of the sons of IsraeL Men of the Jewish 
race were found at the head of all the provisional Governments in Europe. 
' The people of God co-operate with Ath^ts; the most skilful accumulators 
of property ally themselves with Ck)mmunists ; the peculiar and chosen 
race touch the hand of all the scum and low castes of Europe, and all 
this because they wish to destroy that ungrateful Christendom which owes 
to them even its name, and whose tyranny they can no longer endure.* 
Lord George Bentinck : a Political Biography ^ by B. IMsraeli, p. 499. 

' Dr. H. Sandwith refers to this subject in his article in the Fort* 
nightly Review for December, 1879. He says: — 'I had (during his 
journey ' from Belgrade to Samakov *) an ample explanation of the in* 
tolerance shown to the Jews by the Ohristians of the East. During all 
these horrors they played the part of jackal to the Turkish lion. They 
himted out and betrayed the Ohristians ; they were the most zealous 
volunteer spies ; and they were always ready to purchase the plundered 
property of the rayahs. The dislike of the Eastern Christians to the 
Jews is not merely the result of religious intolerance.* — P. 898. See 
Appendix, The Jein'sh Question, 

254 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

countries. Our experience has taught us differently. 
Amongst our NihiUsts there are many of Jewish origin. 
But forgive me for giving you another detail, which 
can surprise no Bussian, but which, I dare say, may 
shock you. Even more deeply rooted is the con- 
viction that the Nihilist agitation is supported not 
only by the Internationale^ but that the Nihilist paper 
is published at one of the servant's rooms of the 
Embassies of St. Petersburg — whether Austrian, 
Turkish, or British is not particularly specified. 
Ambassadors, of course, have their immunities. I 
have heard some declare that if they had the right of 
search in foreign Embassies the pubUcation of the 
Nihilist organs of assassination would speedily be 
stopped.^ This suspicion is not dispelled by the 
evident pleasure with which our foreign critics seize 
upon every outrage to emphasise their advice, and 
find a new reason for pressing their counsels in every 

It sickens one to read the conventional twaddle 
about ' the ruthless despotism ' which is supposed to 
be responsible for such crimes. No Monarch in 
Europe has been fortunate enough not to have been 
chosen as a target more than once, and if anyone 
deserved it less than the others it was certainly our 
present Emperor. 

The shortcomings, the mistakes, the abuses of 
our officials can neither explain nor justify these 

* This remark seems to liave displeased the Times, In a leader of 
December 17, 1879, it describes my statement as one of the maddest of 
myths. Let us hope that, by a happy chance, the Times this time is 

The Attempt on the Emperor. 255 

monstrous attacks upon the Monarch himself. We 
look to him for their removal, and we feel certain 
that whenever mismanagements are discovered and 
malpractices are proved, the criminals will be 
punished without even the chance of being recom- 
mended to friendly coimtries as trustworthy re- 

The Emperor is absolute. He is the repre- 
sentative of the people, to whom we look for the 
remedy of abuses and the reform of the adminis- 
tration. Until you can realise that, you understand 
nothing about our Government. I wish our critics 
would apply to themselves the words Mr. Gladstone 
at Glasgow addressed to the historian. K they 
woidd * lift themselves out of then* environment, and 
assume the points of view and think under the entire 
conditions which belong to the person (or nation) 
they are calling to account,' they would not, as at 
present, * pervert judgment by taking their seat in 
the tribunal loaded with irrelevant and misleading 

To replace the Emperor by a Russian House of 
Commons would not substitute for the autocracy the 
government of the elected representatives of the 
people. The autocracy would merely be replaced by 
the bureaucracy, and the representatives of the 
people, unfamiliar with poUtical affairs, and returned 
by constituents largely under the influence of the 
officials, might not be so effective a check upon mis- 
government as is the Emperor. 

* Rectorial Addrees, Qlasfrow University, Dec. 1879. 

256 Misunderstandings and Prejudices. 

It is not by attempted assassinations that Eussians 
will be persuaded to alter their institutions in the 
Constitutional direction. The tendency of such 
crimes is just the opposite. Even in Ireland far less 
offences lead to the suspension of Constitutional safe- 
guards, and the crimes of the Anarchists would 
justify the creation of a Dictatorship rather than the 
proclamation of a Constitution. 

The Anarchists ^ care as little for a Constitution 

* The NihilistB belieye, as their name implies, in nothing. * We say. 
No law, no religion — ^Nihil/ and the only article of the no-faith in which 
thej believe is, that everything must be destroyed. The following ex- 
tracts from the manifesto of Bakunin exhibit NihiUsm as pourtrayed by 
its founder in 1868 : — * Brethren, I come to announce unto you a new 
gospel, which must penetrate to the very ends of the world. This gospel 
admits of no half-measures and hesitations. The old world mu8t be 
destroyed, and replaced by a new one. The Lie must be stamped out 
and give way to Truth. It is our mission to destroy the Lie; and, to 
efiect this, we must begin at the very commencement Now the begin- 
ning of all those lies which have ground down this poor world in slavery, 
is God. Tear out of your hearts the belief in the existence of God ; for, 
as long as an atom of that silly superstition remains in your minds, you 
will never know what freedom is. 

* When you have got rid of the belief in this priest-begotten God, and 
when, moreover, you are convinced that your existence, and that of the 
surrounding world, is due to the conglomeration of atoms, in accordance 
with the laws of gravity and attraction, then, and then only, you will 
have accomplished the first step towards liberty, and you will experience 
less difficult in ridding your minds of that second lie which tyranny has 

* The first lie is God, The second lie is Right, Might invented the 
fiction of Bight in order to insure and strengthen her reigu. Might, my 
friends, forms the sole groundwork of society. Might makes and unmakes 
laws, and that might should be in the hands of the majority. Once 
penetrated with a clear conviction of your own might, you will be able to 
destroy this mere notion of Right* 

* And when you have freed your minds from the fear of a God, and 
from that childish re^^pect for the fiction of Right, then all the remaining 
chains which bind you, and which are called science, civilisation, property, 
marriage, morality, and jastice, will snap asunder like threads. 

' Let your own happiness be your only law. But in order to jret this 

The Attempt on the Emperor. 257 

as they do for the Slavonic cause. They openly 
declare they despise it as much as the honour of 
their country or its mpral development. Their reli- 
gious, or rather philosophical, tenets allow them to 
do whatever they like or can to crush, not merely 
the Government, but the family, property, and, 
above all, the Christian religion. They are Russian 
Communards, and no society, no Government on 
earth, in defending all that is precious and holy to 
man, could allow them to have a free hand. 

No Government in Europe, and certainly not the 
Government of England, would have been more 
forbearing than the Russian with such deadly enemies. 
Since the murder of General Mezentzoff, and the 
attempted assassination of the Emperor on April 14, 
down to October, when I heard the matter discussed 
by people entitled to speak with authority, not more 
than twelve Nihilists have been put to death, 
although the number of murders, and attempts to 
murder Government officials, have been far greater. 

The French Government, dealing with enemies 
far less unscrupulous, after crushing the Commune of 
Paris, shot 3,000 Communards ; and even in England 
you usually hang more murderers every year than 
we have executed Terrorists since they resorted to 

law recognised, and to bring about the proper relations which should 
exist between the majority and minority of mankind, you must destroy 
everything which exists in the shape of State or social organisation. 
Our first work must be destruction and annihilation of everything as it 
DOW exists. You must accustom yourselves to destroy everything, the 
good with the bad ; for if but an atom of this old world remains, the new 
will never be created. 

' Take heed that no ark be allowed to rescue any atom of this old 
world which we consecrate to destruction.' 


258 Misunderstandings and Pr^udices. 

assasainatioQ.' The majority of the NihiUsts con- 
victed of crimes have been seiit to Eastern Buseia or 
Western Siberia, where the climate is as healthy as 
that of Moscow. About 400 men and women have 
been sent to Saghalien, but only a small part of them 
belonged to the Nihilists. Compare these measures 
with those of Napoleon, who, after December 2, sent 
about 2,000 men to a lingering death in Cayenne.' 
No society has the right to tolerate certain deeds, 
and if the Buasian Government is guilty of anything, 
it is of a most unwise leniency. 

That, at all events, is the opinion of Russians. A 
hurried note from St. Petersburg, written the day 
after the attempt on the Emperor, thus describes the 
feeling excited in the capital : — ' The people, espe- 
cially the lower classes, are very angry with the 
leniency of the judges towards the Nihihsts. The 
house from which the mine was fired has been 
partially destroyed by the populace. The poUce had 
to interfere to prevent its total demoUtion. Should 
any catastrophe occur (which Heaven forbid !) to the 
Emperor and his son, the Grand Duke Tzarewitch 
— between whom, I need hardly add, there are the 
closest ties of affection and confidence — there will be 

' Id Englaod, is 1879, tweoty murdereis -weie Hentenced t« death and 
filteen were buged. 

* Thuifl a very modenls compntstioa. Mr. Eiogloke says: — 'NoDe 
will ever know tbe number of men who at thu period were either killei] 
or impiieoued in FranM or sent to die in A&ica or Cayenne ; but the 
panegpiat (Oramer de OaMagnu:) of Loois Bonaparte and bis fellow 
plottert acknowledges Ibat the number of people who were eeiied and 
transported between tbe few weeks which folli>wed the 2nd of December 
amounted to the enormouB number of tweoty-aii thousand five hundred.' 
— /nmnoH of Crt/nea, sixth ediUoa, toI. i. p. 313. 

The Attempt on the Emperor. 259 

witnessed a popular outburst of the maddest and 
most terrible character. No power could then 
restrain the people from attacking and punishing 
without mercy every individual whom they may 
suspect of Nihilist sympathies/ 

Have we not some justification for our indigna- 
tion? Mirsky's life was granted, at the request of 
General Drenteln, his would-be victim. Within three 
days the answer to this from the Nihilist camp was 
the attempt to kill our Emperor ! 

B 2 
















* I DESIRE nothing from you ; I do not come to you in 
a precarious way, non ut cliens^ sed ut amicus. My 
business is to make you an offer of that which is 
worthy of acceptance by any prince in Europe, the 
friendship of the English Commonwealth, which, if 
you please to embrace it on just and honourable 
terms, will be for your advantage as well as ours. 
If not, you yourselves will have as much prejudice 
as any other by the refusal.' 

Such was the straightforward declaration made 
by an English Ambassador ^ when the Swedish Chan- 
cellor, Oxenstieme, asked him what England desired 
from Sweden. 

This is one of the numerous cases in which 
Russians could have nothing better to do than to 
follow the English example. I am not in any sense 
an ambassador, I simply state my own views, as 
well as those of many Russians, but were I to speak 
in the name of Russia to England, I could not find 
better terms of expressing the feeling which alone 
can guarantee a real, cordial alliance between us. 

1 Bulstrode Wbitelocke, 1654. 

264 The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

We do not want your patronage any more than 
you want ours. But the Kussian Government as well 
as the Eussian people have taken more than one step 
to secure your friendship, and have gone fu^t^r — 
I openly say — than was compatible with our national 
dignity, especially in the course of the Ig^t three years. 
We made concession after concession ; we sacrificed 
our prestige ; ^ we forgot not only our own interests, 
but those of people depending solely upon us, in a 
manner which was altogether incompatible with our 
duty. With what results I need not say, but, believe 
me, the insults, the injuries of these last times have 
not increased the enthusiasm or the number of your 
friends in Kussia. 

If this policy is still to be persisted in, I am afraid 
things will not improve in that respect. The irri- 
tation already occasioned is as sore as a bleeding 
wo^d, and it will only become sorer, if no energetic 
attempt is speedily made by Englishmen whose 
personal views and sympathies are favourable to 
the Slavonic cause. And here, let me say, that while 
I hold Lord Beaconsfield's * triumphs ' of infinite in- 
significance, there is one victory which I really 
regret. He certainly has achieved a great success in 

^ This, perhaps, was not so much matter. V^e can afford to re- 
gard Russia 8 prestige as Mr. Carljle regards that of England when he 
says : * The prestige of England on the Continent, I am told, is much 
decayed of late, which is a lamentable thing to various editors ; to me 
not. Prestige, prsestigium, magical illusion — I never understood that 
poor England had in her good days, or cared to have, any prestige on the 
Continent, or elsewhere. The word was Napoleonic, expressive enough 
of a Grand-Napoleonic fact; better leave it on its own side of the 
Channel ; not wanted here ! * — Shooting Niagara, p. 877. 

Friends or Foes f 265 

paralysing the England which was so heartily in 
accord with our efforts for the emancipation of the 
Christians. To judge from much that is said, and 
even done now, it seems as if consistency, per- 
severance in a course held to be but natural and just 
only two years ago, is now regarded as almost a treason 
to England. Yet if these people were really traitors 
to Iheir own country, who could ivxk^i their pro- 
fessions, who could esteem them, who could ever care 
for their friendship ? Not we Eussians, certainly not. 

But has it really come to this, that friendship to 
Russia is treason to England? Wliat a monstrous 
conclusion ! But before accepting it as an absolute 
truth, would it not be well to hear what can be said 
on the other side ? 

Has the experience of the last three years been 
so very satisfactory as to justify a persistence in a 
poUcy of systematic animosity? Do you like the 
results at which we have already arrived ? Are you 
in a better position now than if St. James's Hall, 
instead of Guildhall, had dictated England's answer 
to our friendly advances? No matter what Eussia 
proposed, England rejected it, while the one thing 
you proposed — the Constantinople Conference — we 
cordially accepted. Lord Beaconsfield adopted a 
poUcy of isolation from his devotion to * English 
interests.' Tell me, has it been so much to your 
interest to care for nothing but * interests.' Has 
anyone gained by it ? 

Of course Eussia has suffered. We have lost two 
hundred thousand lives, not to speak of money ; but 

266 The Ar^lO'Ruasian AUiance. 

is that an adequate compensation to you for having 
made enemies of a hundred millions of Slavs ? Per- 
haps it might, if you had really succeeded in re- 
generating and re-establishing the Ottoman Empire. 
Bussia has her compensations even more moral than 
material for her sacrifices. Where are those of the 
Sultan, or — may I add — ^your own ? Your promised 
' Three Campaigns ' were only fought at the Guild- 
hall, and — whilst the poor Sultan was sighing if only 
for one — oiu" armies crossed the Danube, crossed the 
' impregnable ' Balkans, reached Constantinople, and 
dictated peace 1 

I repeat, who, then, has gained ? This poUcy of 
antagonism has kept Europe in perpetual anxiety. 
Greece has trusted you only to be betrayed, in com- 
mon with those simple souls who put their trust in 
the singular Salisbury Circular. Even Austria, in 
spite of her large compensation for — well — I do not 
know exactly for what — does not seem over grateful. 
Has England then benefited Iierself? Have you 
reaped any material advantages ? But if not ma- 
terially, perhaps you have gained much morally ? 
Have you added much to your prestige ? Does your 
national honour stand higher since your secret agree- 
ments and your Cyprus concessions ? 

Your glory in the past was to have been the 
friend of the oppressed, the refuge of the persecuted, 
the emancipator of the slave, and the champion of 
the weak against the strong. Has that glory, which 
we sincerely envied you, been enhanced by your 
recent pohcy in the East, or have you not conferred 

Friends or Foes ? 267 

upon us the proud position of standing forth as 
the vindicator of liberty and humanity in the Balkan 
Peninsula ? 

Honestly speaking, I do not think that the results 
of the policy of antagonism have been encouraging, 
and I am not without hope that many Englishmen 
share my conclusion.^ 

* Mr. Gladstone, writing in the Nineteenth Century for August, 1879, 
on * The Country and the Govemment,' says : — * In no form whatever is 
there any sensiUe counterpoise to the immense mass of folly and of mis- 
chief which is now crowning us so richly with its natural fruits. Having 
had in former days a tolerahle character for unselfishness, we have now 
nauseated the world with the doctrine that '* British interests '* supply 
the final criterion of right and wrong. Upon every contested question 
that has arisen in the councils of Europe we have been the champions 
not of freedom but of oppression. Not an inch has been added to free 
soil through o\ir 'agency, or with our good will. Servia, Montenegro, 
Bulgaria, Greece, perhaps Houmania— every one of them are smaller 
through our influence than they would have been without us. For the 
first time it can now be said with truth, that in the management of a 
great crisis of human destiny it would have been better for the interests 
of justice and of liberty if the British nation had not existed. . . . Our 
only gain has been that we were supposed to have '' peace with honour ; " 
the honour of providing the Sultan with a line of fortresses along the 
Balkans ; the honour of arresting the southward march of freedom at the 
mountain passes, and leaving on the map the ill-starred testimony — on 
the northern side, *' This is free land, liberated by the Despot of Russia ;'' 
on the other hand, '' This is Turkish land, recovered for the Ottomans by 
the Tory Ministry and Parliament of England." . . There is not a nation 
upon earth with which we have drawn the bonds of friendship closer by 
the transactions of these last years ; but we have played perilous tricks 
with the loyalty of India, have estranged the ninety millions who inhabit 
Russia, and have severed ourselves from the Ohristians of Tiirkey, Greek 
and Slav alike, without gaining the respect of the Moslem. And all 
this we have done not to increase our power, but only our engagements ; 
not to add at any point to our resources in men and money, but only and 
largely to the claims which may be made upon them. Assertions so 
broad as these must bear, in the eyes of those who have not carefully 
loUowed the facts, the aspect of exaggeration. Yet they are simply the 
summing up of ample Parliamentary demonstrations; they nowhere 
exceed the truth, and in some cases fall within it.* 

268 llie Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

How different it miglit have been if there had 
really been established that perfect understanding 
between England and Bussia which our Emperor, 
representing the best aspirations of his people, urged 
upon Lord Augustus Loftus at Livadia in 1876. ' It 
would indeed,' as he so truly said, ' have been equally 
beneficial to their mutual interests and to those of 
Europe at large.' 

Is it now too late ? Alas ! too many of my 
countrymen have lost all faith in the possibility of 
any friendly understanding after the painful disap- 
pointment occasioned by the success \vith which 
Lord Beaconsfield has paralysed our friends. The 
St. James's Hall Conference and the hearty support ' 
of the Slavonic cause, by such men as Mr. Carlyle, 
Mr. Gladstone, Mr. Bright, Mr. Freeman, the Duke 
of Argyll, Canon Liddon, and many others, whose 
names will ever be precious to us, raised hopes of 
co-operation which were rudely dashed to the 
ground by the conduct of your Government. Nor 
is this the only obstacle in the way. Not only is 
there a feeling of the hopelessness of removing Eng- 
hsh suspicion, but the irritation and resentment occa- 
sioned amongst all classes of the Russian people by 
your menaces and insults have created a formidable 
barrier between the two nations. Tliis, however, was 
one of the consequences of tlie policy adopted by 
your Ministry, and it was urged in vain upon tliem as 
a reason for adopting an opposite course. 

Five days before Lord Beaconsfield made his im- 
mortal Speech of the Three Campaigns, T^rd Augustus 

Friends or Foes f 269 

Loftus was writing at Yalta a report of a conversation 
which he had with an independent Kussian nobleman, 
* of high rank and influence, who is known for his 
admiration of England and everything English/ In 
his despatch occurs the following passage, which I 
quote from your Blue Book : — 

He said he hoped England would act in co-operation with 
Russia. There was every motive, political or otherwise, to 
engage her to do so for her own interests, and for those of 
Europe. England would then reap with Russia the gratitude 
of the Christian Eastern races, and augment her influence 
with them. It was an opportunity which might not easily 
occur again, and if once lost, would not be regained. More- 
over, he expressed a great anxiety that the present occasion 
'should be profited of to establish a cordial understanding 
between the British and Russian nations. It would be the 
means of dispelling that mist of distrust which has so long 
disturbed the firiendly feelings between the two countries, 
for their mutual disadvantage. He feared that if England 
should now continue an antagonistic policy to Russia there 
would arise in this country an Anglophobia far surpassing 
what had hitherto been known in England under the name 
of Russophobia.* 

Disregarding all our appeals, your Government 
persisted in its antagonistic policy, with the results 
which were anticipated. And yet, my firm impression 
is, that if England determines upon a new departure 
in her dealings with Eussia, your advances will receive 
a warmer welcome from us than you extended to 
ours. The initiative this time must come from you ; 
we can do no more. 

» Affairs of Turkey, No. 1 (1877), p. 646. 

270 The Angh-Ruman AUiance. 

Sir CSiarles Trevelyan, writing to the Times^ con- 
firms my hope, he says : — 

I should despair of the present state of feeling towards 
Russia if I did not remember the time when it was part of 
an Englishman's religioD to hate the French. England uaed 
to be on the side of every oppressed nationality ; but the 
wrongs of Bulgarians, Greeks, Armenians, even our detesta- 
tion of slavery, seem to be swallowed up by oar fear and 
hatred of Russia. Nevertheless, I look forward to a time 
when we shall awake from this delusion also. England and 
Russia have a great work of Christian civilisation to perform, 
and, instead of counteracting each other, they ought, in no 
grudging or ungenerous spirit, to give each other mutual 

And — who knows P — ^instead of war, perhaps, at 
last England will join her in that sacred work, and 
the two great united and confident peoples mil begin 
a new era worthy of them both, and renew tlie inti- 
macy which existed after the fall of Napoleon the 

Mr. Bright, in hia speech on the Six Million Vote,* 
made a declaration which supports my hope that in 
the future we may be Friends not Foes. Speaking 
with all his usual eloquence, he said : — 

The Government of this country ought to declare, and 
the time is not far distant, I believe, when they will declare 
it — it is now pretty much the mind of the people of Eogland 
— that we have no interest in any longer taking any step 
whatever U> maintain the Ottoman rule in Europe, and that 
we have no interest in maintaining a perpetual enmity with 
BuBfiia. There are two policies before us — an old policy 
which, if we leave it to our children, will be a legacy of 

> December, 1S78. * JuiuAry 31, 187d. 

Friends or Foes ? 271 

future wars ; and a new policy for which I contend and which 
I preach, by the adoption of which we shall leave to our 
country, not a legacy of war, but a legacy of peace and of a 
growing and lasting firiendship with one of the greatest 
Empires in the world. 

To that, with all my heart, I subscribe ! 

The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 


bnqlasd's 'traditional policy.' 

' Wk must support the Turk, for it is our traditional 
policy,' is the motto of Eogland. No, not of England, 
but of many Englishmen. The tradition, however, 
does not go very far back — not much farther, in fact, 
than the Crimean wai" '—a war the wisdom of which 
many of its authors now seriously doubt. 

But I will not raise that question now. Grant it 

' The Tehementlj Russophobbt author of TAtrfy Venn of Foretgn 
Policy, writiDg in 1866, mjb : — ' It is ft^otteu tliat this riolent sym- 
pathy for the Turkish cause is of a very recent date. Among Liheral 
politiciana especially it is only within the last few years that the exist- 
etiM of Turkey has ever been adimtt«d to be a political necessity. The 
BtsteemeD of the last generatioD, with perhaps the ezceptioa of William 
IHtt, utterly detested tlie Turkish GoTemment Even Burke called the 
Turks a race of savages and worse than savages, aod said tiiat auy 
Minister who allowed them to be of aoy weight in the European system, 
deserved the curses of poaterity. Thirty years siga the English TMiigs 
and the Tiar were botb bent on wresting Greece from Turkey and doing 
all the harm they could to the Sultan. After Navarino, the English 
Oppomtion Utterly repnwched the Ministers for declaring it was 
neceeear]' to maintain the Turkish Empire. Id 1S2S, Lord Holland 
could scarcely find words to express his horror at any expression of 
sympathy for the Ottoman Em]Hre. Had Lord Aberdeen and the Duke 
of Wellington declared war in 1839 in defence of Turkey, they would 
have been strongly opposed by a more formidable section of LibeTal 
politicians than ever resisled Pitt when he commenced hodtllitiea 
against the French Republicans. Religious bnaticism, popular preju- 
dices, and liberal enthusjasm were all agaiost the cause of the Sultan.'— 
Pp. 107,110,113,116,117. 

England's * Traditional Policy' 273 

if you will, that the Pasha and the Bashi-Bazouk are 
the traditional allies of free England. Must what has 
been always continue ? Must the past bind for ever 
both the present and the future ? The history of 
every nation is nothing but a record of the changes 
in its traditional, internal, and external policy. 

Policies must be adjusted to facts, not facts to 
policies. No rule of conduct can be immutable. The 
wisdom of yesterday is often the folly of to-day. To 
be truly consistent as to one's object, one must often 
be completely inconsistent as to the means. 

The truth is not a paradox. It is a truism of 
politics. Two or three years ago a clerical member 
of the Prussian Herrenhaus attempted to overwhelm 
the German Chancellor by quoting at great length 
from a speech delivered by M. Bismarck some twenty 
years previously, in which he vehemently attacked 
the policy he had subsequently adopted as his own. 

Nothing daunted by hearing the recent policy of 
his Government denounced so vehemently from 
the tribune in extracts selected from his former 
speech, Prince Bismarck listened attentively, and 
with a slight smile upon his strongly-marked features. 
When his assailant, with an air of triumph, had 
resumed his seat. Prince Bismarck said, ' I have 
Ustened attentively to the speech which I delivered 
twenty years ago. I heard it with pleasure, and I am 
delighted to see that twenty years ago I understood 
the situation so well. At the present moment it 
would be all wrong, but then it was exactly what was 
needed. It is impossible now to secure the safety of 


274 JTie Ar^h-Russian AViance. 

the State except by departing from the tradition of 
that time.' 

Other statesmen have shown even less anxiety to 
justify the change of poUcy forced upon them by 
altered circumstances. The Duke of Wellington, 
when on one occasion he was challenged in the House 
of Lords with an apparent inconsistency, simply 
replied, with charming frankness, 'I have changed 
my mind 1 ' 

Every reform is more or less of a protest against 
the policy bequeathed to us by our ancestors — a 
revolt against the establbhed traditions of the past. 
When the reform ia accomplished, men marvel at the 
opposition which it encountered. Of numberless 
instances take a case which was mentioned to me the 
other day, when we were talking of the universal 
satisfaction with which the abohtion of the Concordat 
was regarded in Austria-Hungary, When the Council 
of the Vatican proclaimed the infallibility of the 
Holy Father, the enunciation of that dogma effected a 
change in the relation between the Papacy and the 
Courts of Europe. Count Beust, at that time Chan- 
cellor of Austria-Hungary, recognised, with the keen 
perception of a statesman, that the time had come 
for breaking with the traditional pohcy of the past. 
Count Beust abolished the Concordat, and boldly 
initiated the new policy which the occasion required. 

There is a significance about that last fact which 
should not be lost. The Sultan has not proclaimed 
in set terms the d<^;ma of his infallibility, but he has 
done worse. At the Conference at Constantinople he 
asserted, for the first time for many years, his deli- 

England's ' Traditional Policy.' 275 

berate intention to defy the councils of all the Powers. 
Unanimously they urged him to accept the irreducible 
minima, and pertinaciously he refused. That refusal 
in itself changed the whole situation. It waa the 
Mussulman counterpart to the decree of the Vatican 
— an act of defiance to Europe and to civilisation. 
To some extent the English Government has recog- 
nised the impossibility of carrying out the old policy 
under such new conditions ; but, unlike Count Beust, 
it has not boldly broken with the past, and annulled 
the unwritten Concordat which bound England to 
the Turk. 

The reasons which led England to fight Bussia in 
1864 no longer exist. The whole situation is trans- 
formed. Is it not necessary to abandon the mistaken 
attempts to secure the peace of Europe by main- 
taining a government always and unavoidably at war 
with its own subjects ? Peace, said Lord Derby, is 
the greatest of British interests. Why sacrifice it, 
then, by maintaining so obstinately a policy which 
has become an anachronism? Can you quick- 
moving Westerns, who invent the locomotive and talk 
by the telephone, be so absorbed in the trivial details 
of each day's business as to ignore two of the greatest 
facts of modern history? What are these facts? 
The first is the evident progress of Bussia imder our 
present Tzar.^ The second is the establishment of 

^ I thought this was undispated, but of late some people seem deter- 
mined to dispute everythiiig to our credit, and I therefore may be par- 
doned if I quote in support of this statement the evidence of one of our 
most determined enemies, Mr. Butler Johnstone, who can neyer forgive 
Lord Beacon8field*s Government for not making war upon Russia in 1877. 
Writing in 1875 on 'Russia as it is/ he sajs: — ^'One thing is quite 

T 2 

276 7%0 Atiglo-Busaian AVianee. 

the Oerman Empire. By the first, Bustda gained new 
claima upon the ^mpathlea of the civilised world. 
The eecond aaved the Continent fi'om the dread of the 
absolute predominance of Buasia. The Turk is the 
only unpn^ressive Power left in Europe, and Turkish 
oppression ia a worse menace to peace than * Biissian 

The Sick Man is sick unto death. England has 
tried to galvanise him into life ; but the task exceeds 
even the resources of English wealth. And yet there 
are some who say, ' Let him have one more chance I ' 
But what is the meaning of this phrase P What can 
be the relations between the Turks and the Christians 
after the events of the last two years ? But it ia pos- 
sible that the Turk may be spared.' English diplo- 
matic influence may succeed in maintaining the 
Turkish Empire gainst the determination of the 
whole of Russia. If so, while apparently adhering to 
the traditional policy of England, Lord Beaconsfield 
will have sacrificed the object for which that policy 
was invented, viz., the maintenance of a Power at 
Constantinople strong enough to keep peace in the 

clear, the Ruaua of 1874 u no more ths Busaia of the Crime«D war ttua 
it ia the Riueia of Boria OodoimofF. Tliat war nuned Turkey and n^e- 
uerftted Ruaaie. . . . Ever; brsnch of Ruaeian admimatrfilion has been 
reformed. Oorrupdon ia not abeolntal; rooted out, but bos tX any rat« 
been cbecksd imd compelled to hide'its bead ; a network of railwaja has 
been undertakeo, and, grealeat triumph of &11, the emancipatioD of the 
aeria was rewlved upon, and, in spite of the ohetaclea, has been buccom- 
fully carried oat. In fact, there has been progress — great, rajud, aad 
astounding prograaa — material and social and moral progToss — along the 
whole line,'— j1 Trip up the Volga, pp. 6-6. 
' This letter waa written in Norember, 1^77. 




It sometimes amuses me to see your papers de- 
claring that Bussians place all their hopes in the 
accession of the English Liberals to oflSce.^ Bussia is 

' In his first Midlothian speech, Mr. Gladstone emphatically admits 
that the English Liberals did little to excite the confidence with whick 
it is mistakenly assumed they are regarded by Rusuans. He said : — 
' Down to the end of the session 1876, although the Govemment had 
been adopting measures of the utmost importance in direct contradiction 
to the spirit and action of the rest of the Powers of Europe, there was 
not one word of hostile conmient from the Liberal party. Was it fietction 
in the Liberal party to remain silent during all these important acts, and 
to extend their confidence to the Govemment in the afiairs of the Tur« 
Idsh Empire, even when that Govemment was acting in contradiction to 
the whole spirit, I may say, of civilised mankind— <!ertainly in contradic- 
tion to the united proposals of the five Great Powers of the continent of 
Europe P Far more difficult is it to justify the liberal party upon the 
other side. Why did we allow the East to be thrown into confusion P 
VThj did we allow the concert of Europe to be broken up P Why did 
we allow the Berlin Memorandum to be thrown behind the fire, and no 
other measure substituted in its place P Why did we allow that fatal 
progression of events to advance, unchecked by us, so £ur, even after the 
fields of Bulgaria had flowed with Uood, and the cry of every horror 
known and unknown had ascended to heaven from that country P Why 
did we remain silent for such a length of time P Gentlemen, that is not 
all. It is quite true that there was soon after a refusal of the great 
human heart of tlus country, not in Parliament, but outside of Parlia- 
ment, to acquiesce in what was going on, and to maintain the ignominious 
silence which we had maintained on the subject of the Bulgarian maa» 
sacres. In August and September, 1876, there was an outburst, an 
involuntary outburst, for the strain could no longer be home, from the 
people of this coiutry, in eveiy quarter of the country, denouncing those 

278 7%e Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

not ao weak as to place all her hopes even in ' good 
tidings of great joy ' Stom foreign capitals. Bussia 
has her own poUcy, and to fulfil it she relies upon 
herself. No doubt Russians would gladly see a 
change in the position of parties in England — ^not 
because they hope much from the Liberals, but 
because they have been convinced by years of abuse 
and bad faith that no tolerable modiis vivendi ia poe- 
sible with the present Conservative Government. 
Those who desire to see peace maintained in Europe 
and Asia would welcome the accesdon of any fresh 
Ministry to power. It might be better, and could 
not possibly be worse. But to imagine that Bussians 
generaUy entertain great hopes of the entente cordiale 
with England if the Liberals return to power is 
decidedly a mistake. The majority attribute the 
speeches of the Opposition to party spirit, and, I 
regret to say, are very sceptical as to the reahty of 
Liberal devotion to the cause of the Christians of the 

Some Bussians do not even desire any change. 
Convinced by the speeches of your Ministers that war 
is inevitable, they wish for nothing better than that 
Lord Beaconsfield should remain in office. As Mr. F. 
de Martens, Professor of International Law at the Uni- 
versity of St. Petersbui^, truly remarks in his excel- 
lent pamphlet on ' Eussia and England in Central 

mBBMcre*. But the Liberal putj wu not, aa a part;, in the field. Aod 
it was not till after nearlj two jeara — tii., lat« in the epring oi during 
the aprirjt of 1877— it was not until nearly two jeara after the QoTeni- 
meut had been busj with the Eaetern Question that the Liberal partv 
first began aomewhat feebly to raiae its voice in the Houae of CommoDa. 

Russia and English Parties. 279 

Asia ' : ' Eussian Anglophobists are extremely grateful 
to the Administration of Lord Beaconsfield, because 
it has, at a single stroke, brought England's Indian 
possessions into close proximity with the Asiatic terri- 
tories which acknowledge the supremacy of Bussia.' ^ 
England is much more vulnerable than before ; and, 
as I said last year, if England and Russia are to be 
foes, it would be unpatriotic in a Bussian to write 
one word against Lord Beaconsfield, who has thrown 
away Britannia's shield, and left her exposed to 
hostile attacks. 

It is very diflScult, indeed, for foreign nations to 
understand the working of English parties. To the 
average Bussian Lord Beaconsfield is England, and 
the Opposition attacks upon his policy are mere party 
attacks upon their powerful opponent — party attacks 
of no actual significance. * What does it matter ? ' 
said one of our most influential journalists to me in 
Moscow, * What does it matter ? These Liberals 
may say what they like in Opposition, but when they 
enter office they will do no more for the Eastern 
nationalities than Lord Beaconsfield. They are all 
alike, these English — some of them, taken separately, 
perfectly charming and well intentioned, generous, cul- 
tivated ; but, take them as a whole, as a nation, they 
are not to be trusted in any way. Can you seriously 
be so bUnd, so utterly under English influence, as to 
beUeve that they care a strata for the Slavs, the 
Greeks, or any other oppressed nationality, or for any- 
thing in the world except their own interests ; and 

^ Ruuia and England in Central Ana, BCartens, p. 10. 

280 The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

wliat interests ! You may point out, as you usually 
do, some straightforward and noble words said, or 
written, by Englishmen, but what is the position of 
these people at home ? Some of them — merely be- 
cause they are not rich enough to buy at an election 
the confidence of their countrymen, or are too fi*ank 
and outspoken to conciliate the prejudices of electors 
— are not even in Parliament. The others, even in 
Parliament, are quite powerless. England,' he con- 
tinued, * is chiefly governed now, not by men of high 
moral principle and of commanding intellect, as she 
was on many occasions in former days. England is 
nothing but a plutocracy — the most demoralising and 
vulgarising shape of government known in all history. 
Compassion, generosity, self-sacrifice — you little know 
how little this adds to your pocket ; but in England 
this is only too well known.' I protested, but in vain. 
A solitary voice is sometimes raised in the Russian 
press, expressing unshaken faith in the honour and 
sincerity of the English Liberals, and a deep con- 
viction that they would pursue in office the policy 
advocated in opposition ; but it is vox da mantis in 
(leserto ; and even the editor who inserts the article 
emphatically declares that he does not share its sen- 
timents, * for one is as bad as the other, and after 
these years no one can trust an Englishman.' 

Devoted advocates of the entente cordiaU between 
Russia and England sometimes almost despair of this 
unjust suspicion of all things English, which, however, 
is perhaps not altogether unnatural after the frequent 
disappointments of the last three years. 

Russia and English Parties. 281 

In the autumn of 1876, Eussians, with delighted 
surprise, began to believe that England would work 
with them in securing the peaceful emancipation of 
the Slavs. How gladly we hailed that prospect Lord 
Salisbury can tell, for no one at the Conference of 
Constantinople, certainly not his own colleague, so 
cordiaUy supported him as the representative of 
Russia. After the Conference, we had nothing but 
disappointments. The Government would not coerce 
the Turks; even the miserable Protocol was not 
signed without provisoes making it of no effect. Mr. 
Gladstone's resolutions were no sooner introduced 
than all but one or two were withdrawn,^ and Eussia 
was compelled single-handed to do the work of 

When the war was over, and Bulgaria was freed 
from the Danube to the -ZEgean, the English Govern- 
ment demanded six millions to threaten war for re- 
enslaving Southern Bulgaria. Mr. Forster's ' amend- 
ment ' was moved, but it also was rapidly withdrawn. 
Preparations for war went on. The EngUsh Liberals 
seemed paralysed. Their Eussian friends were in 
despair. Then came the Congress at Berlin. Lord 
Beaconsfield and Lord Salisbury, on their return to 
London, were received as conquering heroes, with 
shouts of enthusiastic applause, making it their chief, 
and indeed their only, boast that they had restored to 

* Such at least is the universal opinion abroad. I am informed, how- 
ever, on excellent authority, that these resolutions were not actually 
abandoned, and that the operation, mistaken for a withdrawal, was * a 
mere matter of parliamentaiy form, not easily explained to those outside.' 
I'his is another proof of the difficulty of understanding the working of 
Enjrlish party-KOTemment. 

282 The Anglo-Sussian AUiance. 

the power of the Turk the very province whose 
suflerings evoked the magnificent demonstrations 
against the Turks in 1876. What wonder if, afler 
that, Russians became impatient when they were told 
that one-half of England cordially sympathised with 
their sacrifices and shared their devotion to the cause 
of freedom in the East ? 

It is very painful for me to admit that Eussians 
distrust the Liberals almost as much as the Conserva- 
tives, because it ia to some slight extent the confession 
of my own failure. Yes, my utmost efforts have com- 
pletely failed to inspire my countrymen with confidence 
in the reality of Liberal devotion to the cause of 
emancipation in the East. All that is effected is that 
Eussians will watch with some sceptical curiosity to 
see wliether the next Liberal Cabinet will carry out 
the policy professed in Opposition. They hope little, 
and expect less ; but they are willing to admit the 
possibility that the Liberals may do something, 
however small, to work with Bussia to promote the 
independence of the nationalities in the Balkan Penin- 

The declaration of devotion to the engagements of 
the present Government is another matter that some- 
what puzzles Eussians ; * for how,' they ask, ' can they 
fulfil the Conservative treaties and remain faithful to 
Liberal pledges?' I understand, however, that that 
inconsistency is only apparent. It is possible to ac- 
cept the treaties in order to modify the policy, as 
reformers recognise the Constitution which they seek 
to fi-ee from abuses. Eussia also accepts existing 

Bussia and English Parties. 283 

obligations in the same sense, I suppose. Except in 
some few points, she cordially welcomes declarations 
of devotion to the Treaty of BerKn. The Treaty 
of Berlin is, three-quarters of it, the Treaty of San 
Stefano. The more faithfully it is fulfilled, the better 
Bussia will be pleased. But in at least one important 
point it is not so. The partition of Bulgaria is an 
outrage decreed at Berlin. Against that partition 
English Liberals also have protested as loudly as the 
Moscow Slavophiles. What will they do when they 
return to power ? I quite share my brother General 
Alexander Kir^eff's desires on this matter. The other 
day, when I was reminding him of several protests 
made by some friends of mine in England, * Well,* 
said he, not without a tinge of r^et, * let the 
Liberals achieve the work we have left undone ; let 
them, by some energetic measure, repair the harm 
their country has done in the course of these three 

Will they take this course ? I am glad to see that 
Mr. Leonard Courtney, M.P., seems to thi^nk they 
will. Speaking at Liskeard, in November, 1879, he 
said : — 

The duty of the new Liberal Government would simply 
be to work out what has been begun, but in a different spirit 
from the present Ministry, which impedes as much as pos- 
sible the action of what is good, and furthers as much as pos- 
sible the action of what is evil. The new Liberal Oovem- 
ment would promote the liberation of Greece — the extension 
of Greece. A Liberal Government would come to the help 
of Greece, and would insist on the performance of the pro- 
mises that have been given. A Liberal Government would 

284 7%e Anglo-Simian Alliance. 

take up the work that has been done, would cle^r it of 
imperfections, make perfect what has been left, imperfect, 
and would do in no grudging spirit that which the present 
Government is trying to avoid doing at all.' 

Nor is it only in the East that the Bussians have 
been led to r^ard with some indifference the fortunes 
of political warfare in England. There is nothing 
that is more desired than a cordial understanding and 
a lasting friendship with England. Russia seeks no 
alliance with England so far as civilised States are 
concerned, for she seeks no alliance against any 
Power. But in Asia, and in that rapidly-diminishing 
section of Asia overlapping the East of Europe, the 
Anglo-Kussian alUance against barbarism, anarchy, 
and fanaticism is the watchword of Civilisation, the 
key to tlie peaceful development of the Orient. Yet 
ia it not a fact that in the party conflict of the last 
twelve months the Liberal party have, in pursuance 
of, it may be, legitimate tactics of party warfare, done 
much to convince Russia that witii Liberal England 
also all hope of an entente cordiale is an idle dream ? 

What was the Liberal contention at the commence- 
ment of the A%han War ? I remember distinctly the 
cheers that hailed Mr. Gladstone's declaration at 

' ETen more categorical is the fbllowing definition af the policy 
which nUD J Libends hope to lie able to punue on theii letuni to office : — 
' Q. What wiU the liherala do with the Turks ? A. Ubour to secure 
concerted Emopeao eo-opastioii ouder the Traetj of Berlin, to decentral- 
ise or diNDtef^Ie the Ottoman Empire ; to develop the liberties of the 
subject races, to pennit the union of the Bulgoriss, to extend the frontiec 
of Greece, and to preaeire the integritj of Turkey, bj extin)ruishiiig, aa 
eipeditiousi; as is compatible with peace, the power of the ruling Turks.' 
—A Poiitktil Catec/uem, puUished by Infield, 1860, p. 2fl. 

Russia and English Parties. 285 

Greenwich, that if war had to be made ^ it ought to 
have been made with Bussia, not with Ai^hanistan. 
Mr. Gladstone, I suppose, did not believe that war 
should be made at all. But too many Bussians 
ignored the proviso, and even Professor Martens 
places Mr. Gladstone's arguments in the mouth of 

* advocates of war with Bussia,' and congratulates his 
countrymen on the fact that the Conservative Minis- 
ters who declared that the sending of our Mission 

* was perfectly allowable ' under the circumstances, 
were wise and courageous enough to thwart ' these 
efforts to provoke a rupture ' between the two Powers.^ 
The provisoes, the limitations, are invisible at the 
distance of Moscow and St. Petersburg; and the 
effect is exactly opposite to that which is really 

I mention these matters with great regret. It is 
with almost a greater sacrifice to my own feelings 
that I allude to the unfortunate effect occasioned in 
Bussia by Mr. Gladstone's article in the Nineteenth 
Century for January 1879, on ' The Friends and 
Foes of Bussia;' for its allusions to our volunteers 
in Servia rendered it very precious to me, and it 
abounds with such generous tributes to the reaUty of 
our liberating work in Bulgaria that it is most painful 
to refer to it except in terms of gratitude. 

In Bussia Mr. Gladstone seemed so great in 
his magnificent advocacy of the cause of the op- 
pressed, that we regarded him with feelings of en- 
thusiastic admiration. When our best and bravest 

* Huma and England m Central Asia, pp. 3-4. 

286 The Anglo-Ruman AtUance. 

had died for that noble cauMt when every Ruasian 
home waa saddened by the thoughts of those * who 
went, but who return no more,' and when Lord 
Beaconsfield was atraining every neiTe to bring about 
a war to re-enalave the Bulgarians, we were cheered 
by the spectacle of Mr. Gladstone contending, almost 
single-handed, but with unwavering resolution, against 
those who wished to destroy the liberating work which 
our armies had accomplished. 

Bis efibrta were unsuccessful. Southern Bulgaria 
was ' restored to the Turk ; ' and Monten^ro shorn of 
her tenitory ; but, none the less for that, Mr. Gladstone 
has stamped his name in imperishable characters on 
every Slavonic heart. In the liberation of Bidgaria 
we had been allies ; not foes, but friends united by a 
common enthusiasm and by mutual sympatliies ; and 
we believed that if ever he returned to power the 
memory of that great campaign for liberty would 
render possible that longed-for consummation — the 
establishment of a hearty entente, and the most 
friendly understanding between England and Bussia 
for the complete dehverance of the Eastern Chris- 

I still share that hope; but, unfortunately, the 
exigencies of party warfare in England have led to 
its abandonment by many Russians. The article on 
' The Friends and Foes of Russia ' was, no doubt, an 
effective poiemic. It may have served an excellent 
party purpose to have retorted on the Conservatives 
their utterly unfounded charge of undue predilection 
for Russia ; but its effect was anything but excellent 

Russia and English Parties. 287 

in Bussia. A slight from a friend is worse than a blow 
from a foe. To many Bussians it seemed as if Mr. 
Gladstone, the only foreign statesman whom they had 
regarded with absolute confidence and esteem, was 
repudiating almost as an insidt the charge that he 
entertained friendly feelings for their country.^ 
* Well,' they exclaimed, ' if even Mr. Gladstone re- 
gards our friendship as a stigma to be affixed upon 
the Conservative party and repudiated as a disgrace 
for the Liberals, let us not dream any longer of a good 
understanding with England.' It was in vain I pointed 
out that, even in that very article, Mr. Gladstone said, 
' The standing motto of Liberals is friendship with 
every country,' and that the friendship with Bussia, 
which he repudiated, was not the loyal friendship of 
great peoples, but an undue subserviency to the wishes 
of a foreign Power. I was told that Mr. Gladstone 
assumed, as a matter of course, that Bussia would in 
the future naturally and inevitably pursue a policy 
in Europe hostile to freedom and humanity ; and, of 
course, with such a policy no real friendship is 

> It is a curiouB thing that distingaiBhed EDgliahmen out of Parlia- 
ment are, as a rule, much more courageous in avowing puUicly their 
sympathies with us than those who, having evenly-balanced constituen- 
cies to humour, shrink from uttering the generous words which might 
risk the doubtful vote. For example, how seldom do you find an M,P. 
speaking like Dr. Sandwith, who recently said at a large meeting in 
London : — ' The Conservatives accuse us of being friends of Kussia. As 
for Russia, I here declare openly that I at least am not ashamed of being 
a friend of that noble and chivalrous people, who, in these degenerate 
times, scorning the cold calculations of prudence, rashly, gloriously 
rushed to the rescue of suffering humanity, not counting the cost, and 
dragging their more prudent Government after them. All honour be to 
them, while I blush with shame for the miserable part which £ngland 
played in that struggle.' 

288 The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

possible. ' If Mr. Gladstone,' they added, * could say 
such tilings, what chance is there of any Liberal 
Government entertaining Mendly relations with 
Kussia ? ' If Bussia is to be assumed, even by those 
who sympathised most deeply with her ^reat work 
of Hberation, to be the eternal foe of freedom and 
humanity, * except when she departs from herself,' of 
course, the only relation England should maintain 
towards Bussia would be one of opposition. 

But surely Bussia, which played some httle part in 
the liberation of Italy, in the unification of Germany, 
in the emancipation of Greece, Servia, Boumania, and 
Bulgaria, and which, without any pressure from 
without or any revolution at home, has liberated 
twenty-two milhons of her own serfs — a fact too often 
forgotten by our supreme judges — is not justly as- 
sumed to be predestined to ' oppose freedom in all its 
forms ' ? But why assume a guilt which has not yet 
been committed ? 

The feeling in Bussia with regard to the re- 
peated rebuffs which we have received at tlie 
hands of England is one of indignation. These ad- 
vances, they say, should never have been made. 
Bussia is not going to implore anybody's friendship, 
not even that of England. Pardon me, but tlic very 
idea makes me smile. Boasting and blustering may 
not be our characteristic, but we really are not so 
humble as some im^ine. If England wishes for our 
friendship it is not wise to repel every attempt on our 
part to promote a good understanding. Fortunately, 
Bussia is not depending for her greatness and her 

Russia and Etiglish Parties, 289 

existence upon the goodwill of any other country, 
not even on that of England. 

The Future is ours I 

' The Germans have reached their day, the Eng- 
lish their mid-day, the French their afternoon, the 
ItaUans their evening, the Spaniards their night, but 
the Slavs stand on the threshold of the morning.' 


The Angb-Bus$ian Alliance. 



M. Ehilb DB Lateixtb, writing with his uaual talent 
and brilliancy in the Fortnightly Review for December, 
gives a curious account of the apparently anti-Bussiau 
animus of Prince Bismarck's visit to Vienna, which 
does cot appear, as yet, to have attracted much atten- 
tion. It is rather daring to differ from so great an 
authority as the celebrated Belgian Professor. Bui 
since Moliere submitted his literary works to the 
critical appreciation of a humble kitchen-maid, othei 
simple mortals can also avail themselves of the charm- 
ing privilege of plain speaking. 

Is it really proved that questions of mere person- 
alities always play such a decisive part in the policj 
of Powers ? la M. de Laveleye absolutely right in hit 
conclusions either as to the mission of Austria — thai 
is, of the present Government of Austria-Hungary — 
in the Balkan Peninsula, or as to the anti-Rus 
sian character of the Austro-German Alliance 1 
Although these questions are doubtful, nevertheles 
he may be well informed about the motif of the Qer 

' Vidt Mr. Glftdstone's article in the Kinttemth Century, Januar 
1879 ; • The Friends and Foea of Ruwia.' 

Russia s Foreign Policy. 291 

man Chancellor's trip to Vienna, and his story is as 
follows : — 

In May, 1875, the military party in Germany, 
with or without Prince Bismarck's sanction, deter- 
mined upon attacking France without any pretext but 
that she was becoming too strong. It was intended 
to demand the reduction of the French army to 
200,000 men, and the immediate suspension of the 
reconstruction of fortresses. The ultimatum being 
rejected, France was to be invaded, dismembered, and 
destroyed. Eussia, supported by England, interfered, 
and vetoed the projected war. Bussia, says M. de 
Laveleye, was offered CJonstantinople by Germany as 
the price of her neutrality. The bribe was refused. 
Prince Gortschakoff insisted that France must be left 
alone. He, therefore, preserved the peace of Europe, 
and saved France from invasion ; but he encountered 
the deadly animosity of Prince Bismarck. ' The visit 
to Vienna, which resulted in an Austro-German 
Alliance,' M. de Laveleye asserts, *is the German 
Chancellor's revenge for Prince Gortschakoff's inter- 
ference in 1875.' Yet, the Herald Angel of that 
' good tidings of great joy for all who cared for the 
peace of Europe or the independence of nations ' was 
a leading member of the Cabinet which then co- 
operated with Eussia in preserving the peace of 
Europe, and the independence of France from the 
designs of Germany ! * It seems to be the destiny of 
Eussia,' most justly remarks M. de Laveleye, * to meet 
with ingratitude.' But even Eussians, inured to 
ingratitude, recollect no precedent for this exultation 

u 2 

292 The Anglo-Russian AUiance. 

by a former ally over a misfortune supposed to have 
overtaken us because of our share in the Peace 
Alliance of 1875. 

This last occasion on which England and 
Russia acted cordially in concert in Continental 
poUtics is not encouraging for those who still hope for 
the triumph of common sense over absurd prejudices. 
The two nations have so much in common, their true 
interests lead so naturaUy to their co-operation, that 
if once this fever fit of suspicion passed away, a cordial 
understanding would be seen to be a mutual necessity. 

' Nations, like individuals,' as has been observed 
more than once, ' may sometimes go mad,' and the 
prevalence of Bussophobia is an illustration of national 
delirium. Nothing but temporary mental derange- 
ment, leading to total obhvion of their own history, 
could lead EngUahmen to exult in an imagined efiace- 
ment of Eussia.' The best English historians have, 

■ I am glad to see that thera ia erea in Lord Beaeonsfield'g Cabinet % 
■tauDch CoiteerTatiTe member who holds more Tational viewR, and not 
only most kindly ollowB ub to live, but eren deurea our frieDdehip. The 
PiTst Lord of the Admiralty, Mr. W. H. Smith, speaking at Sutton on 
January 16, 18S0, aaid : — ' Do not let it be BUppoaed tliat Her Majesty's 
Qovemment hare any hostility against KuBsi&. 'H'e have no desire 
whatever to have any other relatione than those of the most perfect 
amity with Kuasia. There is no portion of the territory of lius^ which 
we covet. There is no portion of the legitimate influence of Russia 
which we deure to decrease. There is no portion of the trade of Rusaia 
or the commerce of Russia that we daaire to interfere with. The gre&teat 
dedre of this country must be that a vast empire like Russia ahftU be 
prosperous, shall be contented, shall be well governed, and at peace with 
itself. We deplore as much as any individual can deplore the miafor> 
tunes — I can epeak in no other terms — which have occurred with r«gwd 
to the Government of Russia dnring the past few months. Any^i^ 
which requires asMsainstion and cons^racy and bloodshed, and acts of 
that character, must be wrong in ilxelf. It is abominable and hateful to 

Russia s Foreign Policy. 293 

therefore, throughout all this last Eastern crisis been 
on our side, beginning with Mr. Carlyle, the noblest 
genius of our age.^ History proves that Bussia is an 
element in the balance of power with which England, 
whether she hkes it or not, can hardly afford to dis- 

every human being. It is impossible that conspiracy can be right, 
directed against a Sovereign reigning for the benefit of his subjects. We 
long to be at peace with Russia, and there is no reason why we should 
not be at peace with Russia if Russia remains, as we trust she will be, on 
peaceful and honest terms with us.' Peaceful and honest terms by all 
means, but England hitherto has hardly regarded these stipulations with 
which Russia has loyally complied. 

^ On the eve of the St. James's Hall Conference, Mr. Carlyle wrote : — 
< For fifty years back my clear belief about the Russians has been that 
they are a good and even noble element in Europe. Ever since Peter the 
Great's appearance among them, they have been in steady progress of 
development. In our own time they have done signal service to Qod 
and man in drilling into order and peace anarchic populations aU over 
their side of the world. The present Tzar of Russia I judge to be a 
strictly honest and just man, and, in short, my belief is that the Russians 
are called to do great things in the world, and to be a conspicuous 
benefit, directly and indirectly, to their fellow-men.* And agiun in 1876 
he said, with characteristic force: — 'The newspaper outcry against 
Russia is no more respectable to me than the bowlings of Bedlam, pro- 
ceeding as it does from the deepest ignorance, egoism, and paltry national 

^ In saying this I assert no more than what has been admitted by at 
least one of the present Ministers. Mr. Lowther, M.P., Irish Secretary, 
addressing his constituents at York, Feb. 18, 1878, when war between Eng- 
land and Russia was believed to be imminent, said : — * He did not, however, 
conceal his opinion that Russia was a Power which had its uses in the 
world. Russia in the past had filled a position which made him think 
that anything which tended to remove so great an influence for weal or 
woe from the body politic of nations would be a calamity. He had 
always considered the position of Russia as one of the Northern Pov^ers, 
when its attention was not directed to the acquisition of her neighbour's 
land, which possessed a conservative and pacific influence in Europe ; 
for they must not forget at that moment, when there was nothing but 
Eastern clouds in the horizon, there was a Western question. They 
must remember that most of the battles of this country, in a contest 
which overawed all others, was not waged so much in the East as in the 

294 Tke ArujUhRussian Alliance, 

Eacli member of the European family has its his- 
toric mission, which no other nation can perform. To 
efface one Power is to weaken all. 

In party polemics, Liberals sometimes, with little 
regard for our feelings, say that Eussia on the Conti- 
nent has, with few exceptions, supported a reactionary 
poUcy which commanded the support of English 
Conservatives. Now, English Liberals tolerate firee 
and plain speaking ; they not seldom display a noble 
courage in confessing their error, if it is proved that 
any of their passing remarks are contrary to some 
facts which may easily have slipped from their 
memory at the time. This encourages me to insist 
upon certain truths which appear to be forgotten. 
Russia is not infallible, and if you are only happy in 
referring to our shortcomings, do so as often as you 
like ; but, judging from the speeches of some of your 
best statesmen, whose opinions are weighty and well 
informed, our policy has been throughout the greater 
part of the nineteenth century more in accordance 
witli the matured views of EngUsh Liberalism than 
the policy of England herself. 

Li the East events have vindicated the policy of 
Eussia. The real nature of Turkish misrule is not 
denied now, even by Conservatives. English Liberals 
have, at last, realised the iniquity of supporting the 
Turk, which our Tzar Boris Godounoff urged upon 
your Queen Elizabeth, nearly three hundred years 
ago, in the following letter, which was, curiously 

West, and in that they had Ruseia as their aUj. At that moment, when 
considerahle irritation was felt, they must not forget that Russia had 
stood them in good stead, and might do so again.' 

Russia's Foreign Policy. 295 

enough, referred to Lord Eobert Cecil — ^Lord Salis- 
bury's distinguished ancestor and * a friend of Eussia ' 
at that distant time. The Tzar wrote : — 

We have learned that the Queen has furnished help to 
the Turks against the Kaiser of Grermany. We are astonished 
at it, as to act thus is not proper for Christian Sovereigns ; 
and you, our well beloved sister, ought not for the future to 
enter into relationship of firiendship with Bousourman (Mus- 
sulman) princes, nor to help them in any way whether by 
men or silver ; but, on the contrary, should desire and insist 
that all the great Christian potentates should have a good 
understanding, union, and strong friendship, aad make one 
against the Mussulmans till the hand of the Christians rise 
and that of the Mussulmans is abased.^ 

Eussian methods may not meet your approval, but 
Eussian policy — the breaking down of the Ottoman 
Power and the emancipation of the subject races — 
has even in England triumphed over the old English 
policy of upholding the Porte. In the historical 
development of the East, the leading part has been 
played, not by England, but by Eussia. 

Once, and only once, by an * untoward event,' \ 
England struck a blow for freedom in the East ; but ^ ^J^ 
the emancipation of the Christians has been the ' \ 
sacred mission of Eussia from the day she achieved f / 
her own liberation. 

Eoumania, Servia, and Bulgaria owe their liberties 
to us, not to you ; and even for Greece the battle of 
Navarino would have availed little but for the vic- 
tories of General Diebitch. 

Tell me, as you look back across the centuries, 

' Rambaud, Hi$tory of ltus$ia, vol. L p. 344. 



296 The Anglo-Ruasian Alliance. 

which policy was more truly liberal in the East — - 
that of England, which supported the Sultan ; or that 
of Eussia, which fi-eed his subjects ? 

Yes ! replies one of our eloquent accusers, I 
admit that in the East, Eussia has marched in the 
van of progress ; but it was only a noble inconsis- 
tency. Elsewhere she has been the persdstent foe of 
freedom, the disturber of the peace, a standing 
menace to the independence of nations — ^in short, a 
fitting ally of our Conservative Gtovemment,^ 

But why do they generally refuse to give any 
proofs of their sweeping accusations? Is it fair- 
play? I am referred, in answer, to Hungary and 

I do not defend our intervention in Hungary, 
In tlie first place — pardon ray frankness — because we 
ought to have known beforehand that, in return for 
our help, Austria would only * astonish the world 
with her ingratitude,' as was graphically described by 
Prince Schwartzenberg. In the second, because 
Hungary was not altogether wrong in complaining of 
her rulers. But it should not be forgotten that if it 
had not been stopped from the beginning, very pro- 
bably the revolution would have been continued in 
other countries — in Russia as well as in Germany. 

' * A Power whose action in European politics has been as a rule on 
the side opposed to English sympathies." (Mr. Gladstone, yinei^tniJk 
Cfnturyy Feb. 187H, p. 200.) And again, * Unless in cases of pure excep- 
tion, Russia has uniformly and habitually ranged herself in European 
politics with the antagonists of freedom.* (Ibid, Jan. 1879, p. 172.) *Every- 
whore, except in Turkey, Russian statesmanship has headed and sus- 
tained the votAriee of reaction, with the support and sympathy of English 
Toryism '(p. 174). 

Russia's Foreign Policy. 297 

But is it not curious that our saving Austria is 
almost the only act of ours * which still finds eulogists 
among your Ministers, which of course is rather a 
bad sign? 

We must, however, remember that the Emperor 
Nicholas — a preux chevalier in all his feelings, a 
sincere ally of his allies — in saving * the keystone of 
Central Europe ' from ruin prevented the subjection 
of the Slavs ^ of Hungary to the Magyars, and the 
Russian troops behaved with far greater humanity to 
the insurgents than did the Austrians. The question 
was not so very simple ; it could be judged very 
differently indeed by men of very good faith and very 
generous views.® 

The Emperor Nicholas was greatly misunderstood 

' Mr. Gladstone writes : — ' I say nothing of Hungary, for Russia*^ 
intcryention there, however odious to liberals, is, I apprehend, within 
the limits of the high Tory creed, is supported by the practice of older 
and more advanced countries, and cannot be compared in guilt of details 
with our intervention in the two Sicilies only half a century before.' 
— Nineteenth Century^ February 1878, p. 214. (See Speech by Lord 
Beaconsfield, then Mr. Disraeli, Feb. 1, 1849). A Oonservative Secretary 
of State mentioned our intervention in Hungary as an instance in which 
Kussia had done good service to the cause of order and peace by saving 
the keystone of Central Europe from destruction. 

^ The Slavs in 1849 were not avowed as brethren, or rather were 
only recognised by the few so-called 'Moscow Slavophiles,' the poet 
Ilomiakof!', Pogodine, Eosheleff, the three Aksakoffs, Samarine, the two 
brothers Kir^fsky, Prince Tcherkassky, and some others. The RuH^ian 
Government, until the Servian war, ignored them officiaUy, but could 
not help feeling for them and sympathising with their unfortunate lot. 

' Prosper M^rim^, speaking to Mr. Senior in 1859, said : — ' Austria, 
with her usual stupidity and brutality, has made enemies, not only of 
Magyars, but also of the Croats, who rendered her such services in the 
late insurrection. The Russians, when they entered Hungary, behaved 
with the utmost moderation, paid liberally for all that they wanted, and 
when they had beaten the Hungarians, protected them against the 
Austrians.* — Senior*s ConoeruUionSy vol. ii. p. 246. 

298 The Anglo-Ruman Alliance, 

abroad. He was certainly not the heartless tyrant 
he is represented in this country ; just the opposite, 
and those who knew him well will gladly endorse my 
opinion. He was certainly not a diplomatist, as was 
well proved by his famous conversation with your 
Ambassador, Sir Hamilton Seymour. He was not a 
man of science. But he was devoted to his country : 
he was proud of her, he upheld her dignity with aU 
his power, and he followed without hesitation 
wherever his duty led. He understood as well as his 
people that sometimes a reverse is not a disgrace, 
and the noble motto of his life was * Fais ce que doisj 
advienne que pourra' Of course, this does not save 
a man from mistakes — but what does ? ^ 

If Russia made war from a mistaken idea, she 
demanded no compensation for her sacrifices, and 
also * astonished the world,' but only because she 
retired without annexing a single verst of the Empire 
she restored to the Hapsburgs. Even our bitterest 
enemies do not deny that the measure was dictated 
'by a spirit of austere virtue ranging high above 

' Mr. Elaczkoy the distinguiBhed Polish author, in his Two Chta^ 
cellors, says : — * It is undeniable that the intervention of the Emperor 
Nicholas in Hungary bears the stamp of a generous and cluTalroas nature, 
and was in itself an undertaking that astonished his contempoiaiies.' 
Mr. Klaczki * mentions the fact that Bismarck, then an unknown yoong 
member for the Prussian Chamber, expressed, in September 6, 1849, his 
admiration of the brilliant conduct of the Emperor, and expressed his 
patriotic regret that this magnanimous task should not have devolved 
upon his own country (Prussia) * (p. 25). The same author pays a weU 
deserved tribute to the policy of the Emperor Nicholas, whose ' perfect up- 
rightness and immovable finnness none dared contest, and which was 
employed, with a remarkable disinterestedness, to maintain the world *s 
eqidlibrium and enforce respect for treaties' (pp. 11-13). 

Russia's Foreign Policy. 299 

common ambition.' Our Emperor — * the Chief 
Justice of Europe ' — not only believed himself * bound 
in honour' (and these words, to Eussians, have a 
very great weight) to assist the youthful Kaiser in 
distress, but he was convinced the explosive forces of 
the revolution needed his intervention, and many 
EngUshmen shared his views. 

In the case of Belgium, where we are accused of 
actively manifesting our displeasure against the 
creation of the new kingdom, I assert confidently 
that the accusation is unjustified, and that whatever 
faults there may have been in Eussian policy — and 
the worst that can be charged against her is a lack 
of zeal and some indecision in the first stages of the 
affair — was far more than atoned for by the pro- 
tection she extended to Belgium in 1851. 

You will find the whole story of our short- 
comings, such as they were, told at length in the 
Memoirs of Baron Stockmar. I do not think they 
bear out the sweeping charge of Eussia's opposition 
to freedom all over the world. Belgium in 1814 and 
1815 was, by England's advice, added to Holland in 
the Treaty of Vienna. The Belgians revolted in ^' 
1830, and Europe was threatened with a general 
European war. The heir to the Dutch throne was 
the brother-in-law of our Emperor, and Nicholas I. 
combined a scrupulous respect for treaties with a 
marked horror of revolutions. Nevertheless, he did 
not oppose — on the contrary, as soon as it was 
evident that no attack was meditated by France — 
he supported, with some natural hesitation and ex- 

300 The AngkhRuaatan Alliance. 

cusable vacillation, the establishment of the Belgian 

Eussia was one of the five Powers to whom 
Belgium owed her existence.* The Emperor ratified 
both the treaties of 1831 and 1839, and although 
somewhat slow to move, so far from offering any 
opposition to the pohcy of England, always ultimately 
supported it. We should be well content if you had 
supported our poUcy in Bulgaria as we supported 
your policy in Belgium. 

But granting that Eussia did not in Belgium, as 
she did in the East, do more than any other Power 
for the cause of Uberty and independence, her short- 
comings were abundantly atoned for twenty years 
later, when but for Eussia Napoleon would have 
annexed Belgium. 

This fact is too often ignored in England, yet its 
authenticity is beyond dispute. King Leopold told 
Mr. Senior that Belgium, after the coup d'etat^ was in 
imminent danger of being annexed by France. He 

^ See, at the end of this chapter, the letter from the distiiiguiahed 
Belgian Profesaor, M. Emile de Laveleye, Tindicating against me 
Russian policy in Belgium in 1830. 

' Besides the treaties of the five Powers, to which Rusua was a 
party, there was a separate Anglo-Russian Convention, by which Russia 
bound herself to do nothing in relation to Belgium without consulting' 
England. The second article of the Oonvention shows that Russia, 
equally with England, upheld the independent neutitility of Belgium. It 
is as follows : — ' S.M. l^Empereur de toutes lea Russies 8*engage si (ce 
qu'^ Dieu ne plaise) les arrangements arret^s pour Tind^pendance et la 
neutrality de la Belgique, et au maintien dosquels les deux hautee Puis- 
sances sent ^galement li^s, yenaient k etre comprorais par les ^v^nementft, 
4 ne se plier ^ aucun arrangement nouveau, eaus concert pr^alable avec 
S.M. Britannique et sans son asseutiment formel.* — Memoirs of Stocktnary 
vol. i. pp. 267-8. 

Russia's Foreign Policy. 301 

said : * I have reason to know that Napoleon intended 
to copy the decrees by which his uncle annexed to 
France first Holland, and afterwards the provinces 
at the mouths . of the Weser and of the Elbe. I 
believe that the decree for the annexation of Belgium 
was actually drawn out. He was checked by Eussia. 
After the 2nd of December he wrote to the different 
Sovereigns announcing his election. The smaller 
Powers could only express their acquiescence. Aus- 
tria offered the most friendly congratulations ; Eussia 
administered to him a grave admonition. The Em- 
peror said he trusted that . France was prepared to 
respect what Eussia was determined to enforce — 
the existing treaties, the existing limits, the existing 
balance of power. This was a warning which he did 
not venture to disregard.' ^ 

But for that intimation King Leopold declared 
that the annexation of Belgium, in spite of England, 
would certainly have been attempted by France. 

Again, in 1870, the failure of the Benedetti pro- 
ject for the annexation of Belgium was largely due to 
Eussia's arrangement with Germany.* 

Surely, then, it is unhistorical to represent Eussia 
as exercising an evil and reactionary policy in Europe 
on account of Belgium ? May I not, on the contrary, 
fairly assert that the history of Belgium affords a 
signal illustration of the importance to the cause of 
liberty of the Eussian element in the balance of 
Power ? 

* Senior's Canvenaiions, vol. L p. 89. 

* Klaczko'8 Two Chancfihn, p. 244. 

302 The AnglO'Russian Alliance. 

England can surely not have forgotten the 
services which Eussia rendered to England and the 
cause of Liberty in the Napoleonic wars, which even 
the Treaty of Tilsit cannot obscure. 

In the briUiant pages of Mr. Einglake you may 
read^ of the services to Europe, and especially to 
England, rendered by Russia's Moyal obedience to 
the great usage ' which forms the saf^uard of 
Europe and the protection of the weak against the 
strong. It was the Russian alliance with Austria in 
1805 that broke up the camp of Boiilogne, and saved 
England from invasion several weeks before the 
battle of Trafalgar. Again, in 1806, our Emperor 
came forward with his army to the rescue of the 
Continent. Although his heroic struggles were un- 
successful, his * faithful, valorous efforts ' gained him 
the respect of Europe and the eloquent tribute of 
your great historian. 

Have you forgotten the glorious year of 1812 — 
generally known in Eussia simply as * the year 12 ' — 
in which Moscow was offered up as a burnt sacrifice 
on the altar of European freedom? You may be 
proud, indeed, of the brilliant exploits of the ' Iron 
Duke ; ' but although he contributed in the Penin- 
sular War to the defeat of Napoleon, the leading part 
of that great tragic drama was not taken by your Irish 
general and your troops, but by our Emperor and 
our people. After Eussia had been freed from the 
invading army of twenty nations, Alexander the First 
determined on the Uberation of Europe. * Confiance 

* Invasion of the Crimea, sixth edition, vol. i. pp. :?0, 27. 

Russia's Foreign Policy. 303 

en Dieu, CJourage, Perseverance, Union 1 ' were his 
watchwords, when, as Stein, the German patriot- 
statesman, says, * with the eye of faith, which boldly 
and undazzled looks up to heaven, he surrendered 
himself to the inspiration of his large-hearted noble 
soul, and hurled the giant to the ground.' ^ 

Alexander became the soul of the coalition which 
crush-ed Napoleon at Leipzig, and it was his in- 
domitable resolution that led him to begin that march 
on Paris which freed Europe. 

It was no idle boast, his proclamation of Freiburg, 
when he told his heroic troops, * Already we have 
saved and glorified our country. We have given 
back to Europe her Hberty and independence.' Un- 
daunted by temporary reverses, he remained faithful 
to his wise resolve : * No peace as long as Napoleon 
is on the throne.' When at last Napoleon was de- 
throned, he who had been the foremost in the fight 
was the most generous to his vanquished foe ! If you 
read Las Casas' * Memorial de St. H^l^ne ' you will 

' In a speech deUvered by Mr. Canning at a public dinner in layer- 
pool, January 10, 1814, your great statesman, speaking of the oyerthrow 
of Napoleon, put this point in a very striking manner : — * By what power, 
in what part of the world, has that final blow been struck which haa 
smitten the tyrant to the ground P I suppose by some enlightened re- 
public, I suppose by some nation which, in the excess of popular freedom, 
considers even a representative system aa defective unless each individual 
interferes directly in the national concerns ; some nation of enlightened 
patriots, every man of whom is a politician in the coffee-house as well as 
in the Senate. I suppose it is from such government as this that the 
Conqueror of Autocrats, the sworn destroyer of Monarchical England, 
has met his doom. I look through the European world in vain. I find 
there no such august community. But where was the blow struck P 
Where P Alas I for theory ! In the wilds of despotic Russia. It was 
followed up on the plains of Leipzig by Russian, Pruaeian, and Austrian 
arms.' — Memoir of George Canning, p. 323. 

304 The Anglo-Rtissian AUiaiice. 

see that the captive representative of passed glories 
speaks in terms of admiration of his conqueror. 

M. Alfred Bambaud — himself a Frenchman — 
bears unqualified testimony to this feature of Bus- 
sian policy. He says : — * The Power which had 
struck hardest for the freedom of Europe was most 
poorly compensated. It is an incontestable fact that 
of all the aUies Bussia showed herself the least 
grasping. It was she who had given the signal for 
the struggle against Napoleon, and had shown the 
most perseverance in pursuit of the common end. 
Without her example the States of Europe would 
never have dreamed of arming against him. Her 
skilful leniency towards France finished the work 
begun by the war. Alexander was incontestably at 
tlie head of the European Areopagus.' ^ 

Tlie policy of Bussia towards the later years of 
Alexander's life— from 1819-1825 — although it com- 
manded the warm admiration of the English Con- 
servatives, I do not defend, although I would not 
condemn. During these six years Bussia exerted 
herself against the assassinating Bevolutionists of 
Germany, the Carbonari of Naples, and the Consti- 
tutionalists of Spain. It was a time of reaction at 
home and abroad. Europe, still shaking with the 
earthquake of the French Bevolution, was not in- 
cUned to tolerate insurrectionary movements; and 
Alexander, who was the leader of the European 
coahtion against Napoleon, believed himself bound to 

' Rambaud^s Hittory of Rumoy vol. ii. pp. 297, dOO, 304. Vidf 
M. Emile de Laveleye^s letter at the clo8e of this chapter. 

Russia's Foreign Policy. 305 

support the Conservative cause against all the 
Revolutionists of Europe. 

But it is rather amusing to hear the conduct 
of Emperor Alexander during the last years of his 
life alluded to as a conclusive proof tliat the foreign 
policy of an autocracy is opposed to liberty. The 
foreign policy of Constitutional England and of 
Parliamentary, though Legitimist, France was almost 
(if not quite) as reactionary as that of autocratic 
Russia. It is as great a mistake to believe that 
because a State possesses free institutions itself it will 
always support them abroad, as to believe that 
because a nation is governed by an autocrat it will 
be the eternal foe of liberty in neighbouring States. 

Permit me to give a striking illustration of this. 
Perhaps the most illiberal act of Alexander I. was 
his diplomatic opposition to the estabhshment of 
Constitutional Government in Spain in 1822. But 
wliile Russia contented herself with diplomatic repre- 
sentations, France — thut enlightened Western nation, 
enjoying herself Constitutional Government — marched 
an army across the Pyrenees, and crushed by her 
cannon the Constitution of Spain. 

M. Thiers thirty years after justified that inter- 
vention — ^which, indeed, he had counselled from the 
iirst — by arguments which may be recommended to 
tliose wlio tliink that Constitutional States can be 
trusted to supjx)rt liberty in otlier countries. Reply- 
ing to those who declared it would be an enormity 
to hinder an independent nation shaking off an in- 
tolerable tyranny, M. Thiers maintained that it was 

306 The Anglo-Ruman AlUance. 

necessary" to do so. He argued that * If Spain con- 
tinued Constitutional the antipathy of the Spaniards 
towards the French would make her a rival or an 
enemy, instead of an ally. It was the duty, therefore, 
of eveiy French Government to put down every 
Spanish Constitution ! ' " 

After the death of the Emperor Alexander the 
poUcy of Russia ceased to deserve the denunciations of 
EngUsh Liberals. That it received the anathemas of 
Enghsh Tories may, perhaps, be a recommendation 
in some eyes. When we are accused of uniformly 
supporting the side of power, and of commanding on 
that account the uniform support of Enghsh Toryisni, 
I cannot help wondering if our accusers ever read 
Lord Aberdeen's letter to the Duke of Wellington, in 
1830, ill wliicli he says ; * It is a most extraordinarv 
tiling that the Russian poUcy, although at home the 
most despotic in tlie world, should have supported 
in eveiy country for some time past the efforts 
of every party opposed to the established Govern- 
ment.' * 

We are blamed for being displeased with the 
French Kevohition of 1830, but we did not oppose 
it. Our displeasure was purely platonic. Beraem- 
beriiig tlie Continental catastrophe which followed 
the preceding Revolution, it was no more a ])roof of 
a rooted antipathy to liberty tlian was Lord Pal- 
merston's eager recognition of tlie hero of the coup 
cVetat — a crime which our Emperor did not so slightly 

^ Senior^s Ccnvertations, vol. i. p. 63. 
' WtUin^Um Detpatches, toL iiL p. 158. 

Russia's Foreign Policy. 307 

If we are to go into questions of sentimental 
sympathy, I may be perhaps permitted to recall the 
fact that, in the great war of liberation in America, 
Russian opinion was much more strongly on the 
side of freedom in the North than was the case with 
public opinion in England. Our ' displeasure ' with 
the Eevolution of 1830 was by no means so serious an 
offence against the cause of liberty as the delight 
manifested in England at the early successes of the 
Southern slaveowners. 

But why dwell on such trivialities ? Look at the 
great movements of our century, and ask whether it 
was England or Eussia that furthered most the policy 
which, in the opinion of English Liberals to-day, was 
most in harmony with the development of Liberty 
and the progress of Civilisation ? 

The first of these was the Liberation of Italy. 
One or two despatches of Prince Gortschakoflfs 
criticising minor incidents in the unification of Italy 
have caused it to be forgotten how large a share 
Russia had in achieving the liberation of that country. 
The fact is that, next to France, Russia was the best 
friend of Italy. 

Of this there is abundant evidence of the best 
kind — the evidence of a hostile witness in Mr. Martin's 
last volume of the ' Life of the Prince Consort.' Prom 
that valuable mine oi authentic documents one might 
bring many conclusive extracts proving that the 
Enghsh Government opposed, while Russia strongly 
sui)ported, the cause of Italian emancipation. Your 
Queen, for instance, according to Mr. Martin, de- 

X 2 

308 The At^lo-R^issian Alliance. 

clared that the war of unification undertaken by 
Napoleon was * brought about by the wicked foUy of 
Russia and France.' * The Prince Consort declared — 
' Tlie Russians are, of course, at the bottom of the 
whole thing/ ' and mentions the suggestive little fact, 
that Russia placed an army of 200,000 men on her 
frontiers, to keep Austria and Prussia in check, 
whilst Napoleon was engaged in the campaign in 
Lombardy. I even find a characteristic Ipon wot of 
my old and sarcastic* friend. Lord Clarendon, relative 
to our ])roposal to France that a European Congress 
should be summoned to secure the liberation of Italy. 
* One despotic Power,' said he, * has proposed to 
another despotic Power that by means of a Congress 
a third despotic Power should pave the way for 
lilx?ral institutions.' * 

Her Majesty's Historian-in-Waiting, Mr. Martin, 
himself says that English statesmen distrusted the 
plan by wliicli France and Russia would play the 
liberators of Italy. In spite of your distrust, how- 
ever, the * two absolute despotic Powers'* achieved 
their end, and the freedom of Italy was added to the 
other boons whicli liberal Europe owes in part to 
autocratic Russia. 

Another great movement in the Nortli of Euro|x? 
has been carried to a triumphant conclusion ; nor is 
the Unification of Germany less remarkable as a 
triumph of Liberal ideas than the Liberation of Italy. 
Tell me who was the most potent factor in the Euro- 

* Life of Prince Conwrt, vol. iv. p. 421K * /&fV/., p. 420. 

« /&«/., p. 352. * /7m/., p. .340. 

liussia'^ Foreiifn Policy. 309 

pean policy wliicjli rendered possible the realisation 
of the ' great German idea ' — England or Bussia ? If 
Eussia meditated schemes of aggreasion, or even of 
predominance in Europe, she ought to have opposed, 
not supported, the national movement in Germany. 
It was left to England to oppose that movement at 
its commencement, and to preserve a cold neutrality 
towards it at its close. It is needless to refer to the 
part played by Russia on that occasion. Wrongly 
or rightly, whether contrary to or according to her 
own interests, Eussia has supported the unification of 
Germany. Immediately after signing the treaty, 
closing the war by whicli Germany was united, the 
Emperor WilUam sent to the Emperor Alexander the 
following message : ' Never will Prussia forget that 
to you it is due that the war did not assume larger 
proportions. May God bless you for it ! Your grate- 
ful friend for hfe.' ^ 

A third great movement, not yet completed, owes 
also more to Eussia than to England. I refer to the 
Transformation of Austria. Austria is once more 
becomincr an ' oster-reich ' — an Eastern kingdom. The 
war of 1859 ejected Austria from Italy. The war of 
18GG converted Austria into Austria-Hungary. The 
ultimate result of the war of 1877-78 will be to sub- 
stitute for the Dual Monarchy a Confederation of the 
Danube, in wiiich the Slavonic element wiU assert that 
pre-eminence de jure^ which already exists de facto} 

In all these stages Eussia has played a great part. 

^ Klaczko'8 Two Chanctilor*, p. ^06. 

* See the * Heirs of the Rick Man/ miie, p. 162. 


310 The Aiujlo-RH^uin Alliame. 

* The coiistaut security/ which Prince Bismarck could 
indulge as to Sussia in 1866 was hardly less im- 
portant for Austria-Hungary than were the Eussian 
victories in Bulgaria. The end is not yet. But 
whatever may be its final shape, the Transformation 
of Austria, the third great beneficent revolution on 
the Continent, like the two which preceded it, owes 
certainly more to Bussia than to England. 

In these Russia played a part, secondary though 
important. In the fourth great revolution, which 
constitutes the glory of the Nineteenth Century 
Bussia has done the work alone. The Emancipation 
of the East, the gradual overthrow of the inhuman 
domination of the Turk, the establishment of inde- 
pendent, self-governed, democratic States on the ruins 
of the Ottoman despotism — that has been Russia's 
splendid mission, and faithfully has she fulfilled it. 

At the price of the life-])lood of hundreds of thou- 
sands of her noblest sons, Russia has purchased the 
Freedom of the East. I forbear to speak of the part 
in that great struggle which was played by England.* 

^ On this point I may quote the foUowiu;^ passage from the masterly 
work of the Duke of Argyll on the Eastern Question. Excepting three 
minor points in which amendments, introduced by the (Congress, were 
accepted by Russia, — ' Everything that has been gained to the cause of 
human freedom to the East of Europe by the Treaty of Berlin has been 
gidned wholly and entirely by the sword of Russia. It need not have 
been so, it ought not to have been so. But so it is.' Vol. ii. p. 200. . . . 
' All these great elements of good ought to be acknowledged, although, 
most unfortunately, everyone of them has been due to the interests and 
to the power and to the policy of Russia.' P. 213. '. . . < The voice of 
the English Cabinet was uniformly given against every enlargement of 
the ^' bounds of freedom,** and also in favour of every possible restriction, 
even on the autonomous institutions, which it was compelled to sane- 
tion.» P. 180. 

Russia's Foreiyn Policy. 311 

Even in details the same contrast may be traced. 
Russia supported the union of the Eoumanian 
nationality. England opposed it : but Time recorded 
its decision in favour of Russia. Russia supported 
the union of Bulgaria. England has opposed it. 
Time again will prove whicli Power was in the right. 
Russia proposed to add Thessaly, Epirus, and Crete 
to Greece. England thwai'ted this. I am content to 
let the conscience of the Western world decide which 
pohcy was most in accordance witli hberty, civilisa- 
tion, and progress. 

Russia's pohcy — against which you fought in the 
Crimea, and whicli in England was supported perhaps 
by a dozen men, whose names we Russians will never 
forget — now needs no defence. It has received tardy 
but ample justification at the hands of the English 
Government. Russia's offence in the eyes of the 
West was her claim, based upon an undisputed 
treaty, to an exclusive protectorate in the Ottoman 
Empire. That offence is now declared to be a virtue. 
The Anglo-Turkish Convention is England's official 
confession that, in principle, Russia was right, and 
the West was wi'ong, in the dispute of 1853. 

I make no claim for my country which is not 
based upon facts easily verified from English sources. 
Russia has its faults, like the others ; but, judged 
by the Liberal standard, her foreign pohcy has done 
more for the development of Liberty in Europe and 
the realisation of the aspirations of NationaUties than 
lias been done by the foreign policy of England. 

It is very odd that amongst those who declare 


312 The AngUhRuman Alliance. 

that between Busaia and England no alliance is 
posable, are, as a rule, the most ardent advocates of 
an alliance with Austria. Yet Austria was Brussia*^ 
co-partner in every reactionary measure for which 
we are abused. It was Austria that crushed the 
Carbonari in Naple:^ ; it was for Austria that we 
subdued the Magyars, and it was in concert witli 
Austria tliat we extinguished Pohsh independence in 
Cracow — a measure of which Austria reaped all the 
benefit. In our good actions Austria had no share. 
She only participated in those exceptional measures 
when our influence was employed against Uberty. 

I must not forget one unpardonable oflence which 
is charged against us by our enemies — tlie annulment 
of the clause of the Treaty of Paris, neutralisincj the 
Black Sen. It is rather curious, but frequently 
forgotten, that it was Austria that first proposed that 
modification in a despatch, signed by Count Beust, 
and dated January 1, 18G7.' 

* In view of the absurd importaDce which Russophobes so peisi.<tent]v 
attach to the modification of the Bhick Sea Clause in the Treaty of 
Paris, Mr. Klaczko*8 remarks on this point are not without interest. After 
pointing out that I'ount Beust saw that the Troaty of Paris, even in 
1867, had failed to secure the integrity and vitality of the Ottoman 
Knpire, and proposed to substitute for it a general agreement to put the 
Christian populations of the Sultan under obligations to the whole of 
Europe, by endowing them, under guarantees from all the ( 'ourts, with 
independent institutions in accordance with t'jeir various religions and 
races, Mr. Klaczko continues : — * ( 'ount Beust was all the more inclined 
to sacrifice to this vast conception the article concerning the Black .Sea 
contained in the Treaty of Paris, from the fart that Austria had opposed 
it from the first, and also that suceeding events had since expostnl its 
complete useh^s-ness. . . Finally, the Cabinet of Menna summed up in 
the following characteristic words: — "-4 mowr propre ought to be s«'t 
aside in the presence of such immense interests as are now at stake." 
And in fsct wo caimot give this truth a t<xi important place ; the clause 

Russians Foreign Policy. 313 

Russia has reason to be proud of her disinterested 

From 1814, when Alexander I. was hailed 
tliroughout the world as the liberator of Europe, 
down to 1879, when Alexander U. liberated the 
Southern Slavs, Russia has not added to her territoiy 
in Europe one single square foot. Her trophies 
must be sought, not in subjugated provinces and 
captured cities, but in the hberties of emancipated 
nationalities and the destruction of oppressive and 
effete despotisms. 

Let me sum up this rapid survey of the Con- 
tinental pohcy of Russia. I will first take our offences 
against Liberal ideas : — 

In 1819, at the Congress of Laybach, Alexander I., 
with the sympathy of the English Government, sup- 
ported a Conservative policy in Germany. 

In 1821, at the Congress of Verona, Alexander I., 
with the sympathy of the EngUsh Government, sup- 
ported a Conservative policy at Naples. 

In 1823 Russia supported French intervention 
in Spain, against the opposition of the English 

In 1846, allied to Austria, Russia annexed to 

on the subject of the Kuxine had been for a long time paat but a question 
of omottr p}*opre between the Western Powers and llussia; and M. de 
l^iutt showed himself to be clear and farsigrhted in his despatch of Jan. 
14, 1867.'— Klacxko's Tico Chancellors, ^ip, 263-6. 

' lOven in this case KuBsian view.^ were shared by the ICngrlish 
( 'onrt. * George the Fourth did not hesitate to let France know that 
( 'nnning was not agreeable to him, and secretly to encourage the French 
invasion, against which his Ministers protested.' See Thirty Years of 
Foreign Policy, p. 87. 

314 The Atujlo-RwKs'um AlUance. 

Austria the Republic of Cracow, against the protest 
of England.' 

There was another instance about this time when 
Russian and English policy was in opposition : Lord 
Palmerston treated Greece in the PacificD business 
with a high-handed violent-e which led the Russian 
Government to protest strongly against his conduct. 
Mr. Gladstone, liowever, cannot refer to this as an 
instance in which Russia upheld the cause of arbi- 
trary power against the liberty and independence of 
nations, because he was the most eloquent defender 
of the principles which Count Xesselrode invoked in 
his protest against the pohcy of Lord Pahnerston, 
and with Mr. Gladstone went the majority in the 
House of Lords, and a considerable number of the 
most eminent Lil^enils in the House of Commons, 

In 1849 Russia assisted Austria in suppressing 
the Magyar rebelhon, with the approval of most 
English Conservatives. 

In 1853 Russia attacke<l Turkey, and was at- 
tacked by England on account of the principle 
of an exclusive protectorate, whicli, by the Anglo- 
Turkish Convention, England lias now adopted as 
her own. 

In 1871 Russia, with the sanction of all Europe, 
reijealed tlie Black Sea clause of the I'reaty of Paris 
— a reform whicli had been proposed by Austria 
four years before. 

' Both parties in jour PKrliunent united in ciinderaniog this step, but 
it wrm ttn^uuoualr dfr^Dded b^ the I^arl of }t«acoDsfield, then Mr. 
lliDraeli, while Lu leader, Ijord <leorg« nentineh, WRriulv ihnnked th« 
Kinperor of ItiiMii fur hii oi^tioti in the iii.itter. 

RtUfniias Foreit/n Policy. 315 

In 1878 Eussia, with the sanction of the English 
Government, restored Bessarabia, which had been 
taken away after the Crimean War. 

Now, on the other hand, let me put down the 
instances in which our policy commended itself to 
views of Liberal England :— r 

At the beginning of this century, Eussia, allied 
witli England, rescued the liberties and independence 
of Europe from the ascendancy of Napoleon. 

In 1826 Eussia freed Servia, England standing 

In 1829 Eussia, assisted only at first by England, 
achieved the independence of Greece. 

In 1831 Eussia co-operated with England in 
estabUshing the Kingdom of Belgium. 

In 1833 Eussia co-operated with England to 
prevent the destruction of the Ottoman Empire by 
Mehemet Ali. 

In 1840 Eussia again united with England to save 
Turkey from disruption by France and Egypt. 

In 1850 Eussia, in concert witli England, com- 
pelled Germany to evacuate Schleswig-Holstein. 

In 1851 Eussia saved Belgium fi'om Napoleon III. 
Avitli the hearty approval of the English Government. 

In 1859 Eussia, opposed by England, supported 
tlie French liberation of Italy.^ 

^ Lord BeacoDsfield, then Mr. Disraeli, strongly condemned Lord 
Palmerston for pursuing ^ the phantom of an unlimited Italy.' Nine 
years before the same authority, who resisted Bulgarian liberation on 
account of British interests, applied the same doctrine to Italy. In his 
speech on Lord Palmerston's Foreign Policy in 1860, Mr. Disraeli de- 
clared ' it was a great English interest ' that the north of Italy should 
belong to Austria, and that Sicily should belong to Naples.' 


IC The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

In 1860 Eussia, supported by England, approved 
of the French occupation of the Lebanon. 

In 1866 Russia supported Prussia in the Prusso- 
Italian war with Austria — England being neutral — 
whicli began Gennan unity, completed the unitj" of 
Italy, and resulted in the freedom of Hungar)\ 

In 1867 Russia, in concert witli England, secured 
tlie evacuation by the Turks of the Servian fortresses. 

In 1868, Russia, opposed by England, supported 
tlie Cretan insurrection (unfortunately, not per- 
severingly enough).* 

In 1870, Russia — England being neutral — sup- 
ported Germany by neutralising Austria, and thus 
secured the completion of German unity and tlie 
overthrow of the French Empire. 

In 1875, Russia, in concert Avith England, pre- 
vented a German attack on France. 

In 1877, Russia, opposed by England, secureil 
the liberation of Bulgaria, the tutelage of Turkey, 
and the complete independence of Servia, Montenegro, 
and Roumania. 

The concert between the two Governments is 
significant. Can you, then, wonder at our doubting 
the sanity of those who systematically speak as if the 

' In Ilus^ia we grreatly regret the luisunderstandiD^ existing between 
the Slavs and the Greeks. Amongst Rufisian Slavophils there are very 
few indeed who are not at the same time sympathisers with their Greek 
co-religionists. I well remember the moral support which the Candiotes 
found in Russia at the time of their rising. Amongst others, my brother, 
Nicholas Kir^ff, whose Slavonic sympathies have been saihciently 
proved, then quite a young man, was enthusiastically supporting the 
("andiote cause, collecting money and organising all sorts of funds for the 
relief and assistance of the insurgents. Everything was done which 
could be done, so far as the Russian people was concerned. 

Rtissia's Foreign Policy. 317 

effacement of Eussia from the political map and the 
elimination of Eussia from the balance of power 
ought to be the chief ends of English diplomacy ? 
The State that took the leading share in freeing 
Europe from the yoke of Napoleon, and in the 
emancipation of the East from the yoke of the Turk, 
and that has successfully exerted her influence to 
secure tlie preservation of Belgium, the liberation of 
Italy, the unity of Germany, and the transformation 
of Austria, is not one whose presence can be spared 
from the Council table of Europe without loss to the 
cause of Liberty, Nationality, and Justice. 

Letter from M. Emile de Laveleye. 

On tlie appearance of the foregoing letter in the 
press, M. de Laveleye addressed to me the following 
letter : — 

Ch^re Madame, — Permettez-moi deux mots a Pappui de 
votre th^se que la Russia a souvent defendu en Europe la 
cause de la liberty. 

Vous admettez un tort qui n'existe pas, et vous oubliez 
un fait liberal que les M^moires du Prince Mettemich, 
recemment parus, mettent en pleine lumi^re. 

I^ Kussie n'a pas approuve la Revolution de 1830, c'est 
vrai, mais elle a eu parfaitement raison. La reunion de la 
Belgique et de la HoUande etait ce que le traite de Vienne 
avait fait de mieux. C6tait le retablissement des Pays Bas 
du XVIe siecle, formation historique reposant sur des con- 
venances g^graphiques evidentes. La Hollande apportait le 
commerce et les colonies, la Belgique I'industrie et I'agri- 
culture. Ijes Pays Bas unis ^taient un Element de stability 
europ^enne, car c'^tait un trop gros morceau pour ^tre aval^, 
soit par TAllemagne, soit par la France. Depuis 1830 la 

318 The Aitglo-Suman Alliance. 

Belgique n'a ceeai de trembler pour eon existence. Cest li 
un &it certaio. La Revolution de 1830 a £t4 faite priocipale- 
ment par les pr^res contre uo roi protestant, et lea plus 
pr^voyanta parmi lea Lib^rauz jtaient Orangistes et regret- 
taient la x^paration d'avec la HoUande. La Rusaie dans 
son oppotiitioa d^fendatt done la cause du lib^ralisme et du 
veritable ^quilibre europ^n. N'est-il pas indent que notre 
Bitoation serait autrement forte si nous 4tions restes unis k 
la Hollande, »i nous avions son commerce et ses colonies ? 
AuBsi on s*efforce de reparer la faute de 1830 par une union 
douanni^re. Done le tort que voub admettez au passe 
liberal de la Kuseie en 1830 n'existe pas. Toutau contrure, 
la France a soutenu notre revolution parcequ'elle oomptait 
bien nous annexer, et I'Angleterre parcequ'elle ^tait jalouse 
du commerce en HoUande. 

Voici I'oubli. Mettemich raconte avec indignation qu'en 
1614 I'Enipereur Alexandre, au lieu de restaurer les Bour- 
bons, voulait qu'on convoquat une Assemblee qui aurait libre- 
ment choisi la forme de gouvemement qui convenait 4 la 
France. II pr^voyait que la restauration ne pou\'ait durer. 
Klettemich ne le dit pas, mais il c^t connii que l*Empereur 
Alexandre eQt admis mSme la IMpublique. Xc rc montiait- 
il paw prevoyant, en m6me temps que d^voue & la cause du 
progrfia et de la liberty ? 

Et votre Empercur actuel n'a-t-il pas bien merite de 
I'hiimanite en abolissant le servage, ct en affranchissant les 
populations aoumiites au detestable regime turc ? Ce qu'il 
fiiut a la Kussie actuellement, cc n'est pas le Parlement, 
maid un Souverain qui 8'tiutpir« <le« irculitions (UTnoera- 
liques du Slavieme. 

Oci serait trop long a d^velopper. Je m'arrSte en me 
disant votre bien devoiie, 

Kmilk de Laveley£. 
IMcembre 2S, 1870. 

Dear Madam,^Allow me to add two wordu in support of 

Russia's Foreign Policy. 319 

your thesis, that Russia has often in Europe defended the 
cause of liberty. 

You admit a fstult which does not exist, and you forget 
a liberal deed, which Prince Mettemich's Memoirs, newly 
published, brings into full relief. 

Russia, it is true, has not approved the Revolution of 
1830, and in this she was perfectly right. The union of 
Belgium with Holland was the best thing done by the Treaty 
of Vienna. It was the re-establishment of the Netherlands 
of the 16th centiu'y, an historical formation, based upon 
palpable geographical conveniences. Holland contributed 
her commerce and her colonies ; Belgium brought industry 
and agriculture. 

The United Netherlands formed an element of European 
stability, because it was too large a morsel to be swallowed 
either by Germany or by France. 

Since 1830 Belgium has never ceased trembling for her 
existence. That, at least, is certain. The Revolution of 
1830 was principally got up by the priests against a Protes- 
tant king, and the most farseeing amongst the Liberals were 
all OrangisteSj and regretted the separation from Holland. 

Russia, in her opposition, defended therefore the cause 
of Liberalism, and that of the true equilibrium. Is it not 
evident that our position would be infinitely stronger had we 
remained united to Holland, and shared in her commerce 
and her colonies ? We are now making strenuous endeavours 
to repair the mistake of 1830 by the establishment of a 
Customs Union. 

Thus the fault you admit in the Liberal past of Russia 
does not exist. Just the opposite. France supported our 
revolution, hoping to annex us, and England being jealous of 
the commerce of Holland. 

Here is your omission. Mettemich relates with indig- 
nation that in 1814 the Emperor Alexander, instead of 
restoring the Bourbons, desired that there should be con- 
voked an Assembly, empowered freely to choose the form of 
government most convenient for France. 


Tfie Anglo-Ruman Alliance. 

He foresaw that the Bestoration could not hist. Metter- 
nich does not say what is well known, that the Emperor 
Alexander would even have accepted a Bepublic. 

Did he not prove his foresight as well as his devotion to 
the cause of progress and liberty ? 

And your present Emperor, has he not deserved well of 
Humanity, in abolishing serfdom, and in liberating the popu- 
lations subjected to the detestable Turkish rule ? 

What is needed for Bussia now is not a Parliament, but 
a Sovereign, inspired by the democratic traditions of Sla- 

But this subject would lead me too far ; I close it in 

Yours truly, Emile de I/AVELETe. 

December 28, 1879, JA^ge. 




Op all the reproaches brought against Russia the 
most persistent and the most touching is that of 
her ' greed for territory.' ' Russian aggression' is the 
fashionable mot d'ordre now in England. Well, if we 
are aggressive, is it not another instance of the simi- 
larity between the two countries ? Does it not only 
prove how closely we try to imitate the Imperial 
policy of England ? 

Permit me to quote here an English official testi- 
mony concerning what has been called * comparative 
aggression.' Mr. T. H. Farrer, Permanent Under- 
Secretary of your Board of Trade, wrote an article 
in the Fortnightly Review of March, 1878, which 
contained many usefiil statistics on this point. He 
writes : — 

We are apt to impute to Russia an aggressive policy^ 
and this accusation may be just ; but what is the case with 
ourselves? The conquests of England have been much 
larger than those of Russia in area, whilst they have been 
beyond all comparison greater in value and population. 
The conquests of England within the last hundred and 
thirty years amount to 2,650,000 square miles, and nearly 
250,000,000 people. All these are conquests, and all these 


322 Tke Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

conqaeets, except Jamaica and one of the small West Indian 
Islands, have been made since the middle of the last centoiy. 
Countries colonised and unconquered, such as Australia, are 
not included.' Russian conquests within the last one 
hundred and thirty years only amount to 1,642,000 square 
miles, with a population of 17,133,000. Add to this that, 
whilst Russia has extended her borders, England has sought 
her conquests beyond seas, and has established a garrison in 
every point of vantage in every comer of the globe. Under 
these circumstances it is not for England to complain of 
aggression and conquest. Whatever the motives and what- 

ever the results, the broad &ct remains that England has 

acquired by conquest an empire more extensive, more popu- 
lous, more wealthy, than any nation of the modem world. 

— You say you annex unwillingly under ' iraperioua 

necessity,' and you alone among the nations are des- 
titute of ' earth hunger.' Possibly. Judging, how- 
ever, by results, it appears that although you have no 
appetite, no one contrives to make a larger meal. 

Necessity is as imperious with Bussia as with 
England, nor are our destinies less inexorable. For- 
tunately, yours always take you to rich and fertile 
land, good business, profitable customers, or com- 
manding positions ; although, to find them, ' imperious 
necessity ' takes you thousands of miles fi-om home. 

Kussia has never yet annexed a foot of land that 
is not conterminous with her frontier. Time after 
time she has tried to arrest the natural and inevi- 
table advance of her frontiers, and she has always 
tried in vain. Her conquests are free from the sus- 

' Among Ihpi^ uninenlioned snnexnfinDa nre Aut^tralasin, 3,066,618 
p'|H(ire iiiilen, nnd 2,500,000 inhnlHlBnU, Rod the Tranavaal, 114,360 
eqiisre milea, uid 500,000 inbnbiUiits. Cypnid i>t coiir»e is not annexed 
— ^nly «cciipi«I. 

Russian Aggression. 323 

picion of profit.^ Our annexations (I am sorry to 
say) are almost all what A%hanistan will probably be 
to you — a permanent source of ruinous expenditure. 

Eussia and England, of all nations, ought to be 
the readiest to excuse each other's faiUngs, because 
alone among nations we have to grapple with the 
same difficulties.* 

To us belongs the sceptre of Asia. Whetlier we 
like it or not, that continent has been given both 
to Eussia and to England as a common heritage. 
Neither can exclude the other from its share in 
the arduous work of civilising and educating the 
Oriental world. 

To Eussia has been given the cold inhospitable 
North, and the barren burning steppe ; while to you 

* ^ The Russians can hardly have been drawn into Turkestan by the 
expectation of making money there. . . . Russia's acquisitions in Tur- 
kestan have entidled upon it fresh and heavy burdens. The possession 
of Turkestan seems to me to be a burden laid on Russia rather than a 
boon granted to her. Were it otherwise, I should not grudge it her, for 
it seems to be the opinion of all rational observers that Providence hns 
committed in that country a civilising mission to her caie. . . . If 
Russia be formidable with Turkestan, she would be still more for- 
midable without it For her it is cost, it is can>, it is liability to attack, 
it is responsibility.'— Mr. Gladstone: 'Russinn Policy and Deeds in Tui- 
kestan,* Contetnpormy Hevietv, Nov. 1876, pp. 879, 881, 882. 

^ * A fussy and fretful jealom<y of the teriitorial acquisitions of others, 
entertained in a country which exceeds all otheis in its multiplied 
annexations all over the globe, is not a little detrimental, as I think, to 
our dignity, and is peculiarly odious, and even not a litUe despicable, in 
the eyes of the nations.' — Mr. Qlsdstone : ' Russian Policy and Deeds in 
Turkestan,' Contemporary Review, Nov. 1876, p. 880. ' During the last 
hundred years England has, for every square league of territory annexed 
to Russia, by force, violence, or fraud, appropriated to heiself three; 
nor are the means whereby Great Britain has augmented her possessions 
a whit less reprehensible than those which have been resorted to by 
the Northern Power for a similar purpose.' — Ccbden's Political Writings, 
* Russian and Britiidi Aggression,' p. 86. 

T 2 

324 The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

belong the teeming myriads of the South, with all the 
fabled wealth of Hindostan. 

You have antique civilisations in ruins at your 
feet ; we have but to /deal with the nomad of the 
desert, and the savage and the fanatical Tartars of 

Is it reasonable to expect from our officers that 
strict execution of every engagement, under the 
stress and strain of the struggle to maintain their 
footing, whilst * carrying the torch of civilisation 
amongst\ barrels of gunpowder,' which you never suc- 
ceeded in exacting from your representatives amongst 
the mild Hindoos ? 

When the history of British India is described, 
even by Englishmen, as one long series of violated 
/ pledges and disobeyed instructions, why do you talk 
as if Eussians were ' sinners beyond all other sinners, 
because in our advance across Central Asia you can 
detect discrepancies between intention and per- 
formance ? 

Granted, ' Russia is advancing towards Lidia ! ' 
but no faster tlian you are advancing towards Russian 
Turkestan.^ Within the last forty years each of us 
has taken a 'stride towards the Hindoo Koosh, and it 
is not Russia who is invading Afghanistan. Why do 
you quarrel with a law of nature ? It was Sir 
Robert Peel who said, ' When civilisation and bar- 

• * We talk coolly of tho gigantic strides — that Is the stock phrase — 
made by Russia in her career of As^iatic conquest. But her gains have 
been as nothinp: to the gains of the British Empire during the same 
jioriod in conquests and annexations.' Duke of ArgvlK Ea/tfent Questum^ 
Tol. ii. p. 22:{. 

Eussian Aggression. 325 

barism come into contact, the latter must inevitably 
give way/ and if that were true in 1844 of Scinde, is 
it not equally true of the Khanates of Turkestan ? 

Your advance, although as rapid as ours, excites 
no fear in Bussia. Why do you feel so nervous ? As 
for ' Eussian Intrigue,' well, let me quote Sir Henry 
Eawlinson as to the comparative danger, on that 
' score, of each Power in Asia. * It must always be 
remembered,' he says — although I fear his impera- 
tive ' must ' is frequently disregai'ded even by himself 
— ' it must always be remembered that Bussia is far 
more vulnerable than England in this respect, and 
that we could instigate a great anti-Bussian Moham- 
medan movement, north of the Oxus, with much 
greater facility than Bussia could stir up the Sikhs 
and Hindoos beyond the Indus/ ^ 

Sir Henry Bawlinson is ' an old Bussophobist,' but 
he thinks the extension of Bussian power in the East 
is inevitable. * In reaUty,' he said, writing in 1874, 
' when Bussia had once /crossed the Steppe, there 
could be no substantial or permanent check to her 
expansion until she was arrested by the barrier 
of British Indian influence,' and, again, * Bussia 
cannot stop midway in the career in which she has 
now entered.' 

Take, as a typical instance of the hollo wness of 
the complaints of the so-called * Bussian perfidy,' 
the case of Khiva. That we had no alternative but 
to send an expedition against that robber Khanate, 

' England and Ruma in the East, p. 3(Vi. 

32G The Anglo-Riissian Alliance. 

IB admitted even by our most unconiprouiising oppo- 

Having sent that expedition to Khiva and reduced 
it to obedience, would we have been justified in 
lea\'ing the Khan as free as before to resume the mal- 
practices which necessitated our costly intervention ? 
Beally, the abuse and misrepresentation to which we 
have been subjected about the matter are not the 
best specimens of * English fair play.' We promised 
not to annex Khiva, and we have not annexed Khiva. 
There is not a Bussian in Khiva at this hour. We 
have been repeatedly pressed to take Khiva ; but we 
have hitherto resisted the pressure,\chie0y in order - 
'to keep — what many amongst us thought— our most 
unreasonable promise to England. Promises! pledges! 
Can one ever sufficiently foresee the future to justify 
giving assurances which may involve either the sacri- 
fice of one's word or one's country's interest? I can- 

' or man]' I will only quote ooe. Writiog of oui first ezpedition 
a(j[UD8t Kliivs under Peroftki, Sir Henr; Rawlinaoa bsjb: 'The expedi- 
tion bod long heen contemplated- As a measuro of mere frontier police, 
nud iriespective of all considerations of eiUnud policy, it was urgcntlj 
needed. With the ezception, indeed, of the clftim of the preecriplive 
aua-mTieti over Khiva, there was not a nngle week point in the Russiaa 
bill of indictment agsioBt Khiva. The Uibegs of Khiva either directly, 
or throiig-b the Turkomans and Ehirghii vho obeyed them, had for jem 
committed every conceivable atrodty against the Russian GoTemment. 
To roanslealing and raids upon the friendly Khirghii were added the 
constantly recurring plunder of canvans ; attacka upon the RusuftD oat- 
poets, burdens upon trade which weighed it to the ground; outngea npon 
Rusuan subjecU who ventured into the country ; indignitiea to tba 
Govemnient, and finally a systematic course of agitation in the Steppe 
undertaken with a view of inciting the Kbirgbii to rebellion. Tba pro- 
Tocalion, indeed, offered by Khiva was not less complete as a rami* Mi 
than tlie inva.'non of India by the Sikhs, which terminated in our own 
anDCxaliou of the I'anjnah.'—Eni/land and Jtutm'a in fhe £att, p. 140, 

linssian Aggression* S27 

not understand how anyone can help burning with 
indignant wrath, when any foreign Minister has the 
audacity to demand such engagements ! 

Eussia, unquestionably, has * rectified her frontier,' 
at the expense of the Khan, but she left him to reign 
in Khiva over the Khanate. I cannot see how 
Eussia can be said to have annexed Khiva because of 
that rectification, any more than Germany can be 
said to have annexed France, or France to have 
annexed Italy, because Prince Bismarck took Alsace 
and Lorraine, and the Emperor Napoleon, Nice and 

Yes. Eussia established her influence over 
Khiva ; and, I suppose, in spite of all you say about 
its independence, you are trying to do the same in 

It is not wise on your part perpetually to accuse 
us of breaking our word, when we are all the tune • 
inconveniencing ourselves in order to keep it. I was 
glad to read Mr. Forster's words on this point when 
he warned our enemies, that ' by constantly asserting 
that Eussia has seized upon Khiva, they may at last 
be taken at their word, and Eussia may do what she 
is constantly told she is doing, and which she has not 
done yet. 

That admirable paper, the Statesman^ which speaks 
out the truth with such refreshing frankness, deals 
with this subject more trenchantly than any Eussian 
would care to do. Permit me to quote this testi- 
mony of an experienced Anglo-Indian journalist. 

After referring to what he describes as a mon- 

328 Tlie Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

strous falsehood, 80 persistently circulated by English 
papers, that the Emperor has annexed IQiiva, he 
says : — 

The course of events, honestly interpreted, showed the 
absolute good faith of the Bussian monarch. He kept his 
word to the letter. The public are told, in every con- 
ceivable form of falsehood, that Bussia has annexed Khiva. 
It would be as true to say that England has annexed the 
moon. The Expedition to Khiva was attended by severe 
treatment of the Turkoman hordes in its neighbourhood. 
Fearing their resentment upon the withdrawal of the Russian 
forces, the Khan of Khiva made an urgent request for the 
retention of a part of the Bussian army in Khiva itself. The 
request was refused, but the danger being real, it was finally 
settled that a small Cossack force of some eight hundred 
men should be posted on the Khivan frontier, where the 
Amu Daria discharges itself into the Sea of Aral; and a 
strip of land was assigned as the territorial limits of the 
force. The step was a military necessity, as Mr. Schuyler 
shows, and as subsequent events have proved. Attack after 
attack upon Khiva has been made by the Turkoman hordes 
since the Bussian army withdrew, and the presence of this 
small Cossack force is simply the nucleus of defence against 
their invasions. The State of Khiva is to-day as indepen- 
dent as it ever was, the only change being that its slave 
market is closed — let us hope for ever. Instead of * annex- 
ing ' Khiva, as we annex territories, substituting therein our 
own alien executive for that of the subdued people, there is 
not a Bussian, so far as we have been able to ascertain, in 
the whole Khivan State. Bussia is feared beyond doubt in 
Central Asia ; but she is respected at the same time, for her 
name is a synonym for the suppression of kidnapping, 
plundering, and slavery; and we, as Englishmen, rejoice 
with our whole heart at her progress in those regions, and 
view with bitter shame and humiliation the efforts of our 
countrymen to decry what she is doing. We wish, with our 

Russian Aggression. 329 

whole heart, that she were at Merv, for it is the last slave 
market in Central Asia.* 

Unfortunately, such honest voices are too rare in 
tlie English press ; although, I gratefully admit, that 
they find a responsive echo in the hearts of many of 
the best Englishmen. 

Let me say, also, how delighted I was with the 
letter in the Times * from that staunch friend of all 

1 Statesman^ December 13 and 27, 1879. 

^ Sir Gharles Treyeljan, wrote as follows in the TimeSf Nov. IB, 
1878 : — ' Khiva was the centre of the Turkoman slave-hunting system 
which had desolated the neighbouring provinces of Persia. This place 
was the mart for the sale of the unhappy people who had been torn from 
their homes, and the Khan derived great part of his revenue from the 
dues upon the traihc. During the short period of our influence in Central 
Asia, before our military occupation of Afghanistan collapsed, a British 
officer was deputed to Khiva to obtain the release of the Russian slaves, 
of whom a large number were safely delivered at Orenburg ; but a whole 
population of Persian captives remained, who were finally emancipated 
and sent back to their homes by General Kaufmann. 

' The assurance given by Count Schouvaloff to our Government is 
described as follows, in Lord Granville's letter to Lord A. Loftus of 
January 8, 1873 : — ** The object of the expedition was to punish acts of 
brigandage, to recover fifty Russian prisoners, and to teach the Khan 
that such conduct on his part could not be continued with the impunity 
in which the moderation of Russia had led him to believe. Not only 
was it far from the intention of the Emperor to take possession of Khiva, 
but positive orders had been prepared to prevent it, and directions given 
that the conditions imposed ^ould be sudi as could not in any way lead 
to a prolonged occupation of Khiva." The hazards of the expedition 
were under-estimated. Of the three columns which were to converge 
from Tashkend, Orenburg, and the Caspian, the last never reached its 
destination, and the other two with difficulty escaped the danger of the 
desert which had always formed the defence of Khiva. 

' In all these circumstances, how were the Russians to act in order to 
accomplish the object of the expedition and at the same time to keep 
faith with us P Could they reasonably be expected, after recovering their 
prisoners, to retire again behind the desert, leaving the Khivans and 
their allies the Turkomans to resume their inhuman practices with more 
than their previous security after this experience of the weak and strong 
lK)iut8 of their position ? Should we have prait$ed them for doing so ? 

330 The Anglo-Russian AUiance. 

good causes, Sir Charles Trevelyan. There are at 
least some few who do us justice in this matter. 
How much better our relations would be if you .were 
guided by their counsels, and ceased * to obstruct 
Bussia in her costly and difficult task by habitual 
misconstruction and depreciation ! ' 

The words of the Duke of Argyll are as emphatic, 
and even more categorical, than those of Sir Charles 
Trevelyan. The Duke says : — ' It is generally asserted, 
and widely beUeved, that in the conquest of Khiva 
Russia has been guilty towards us of flagrant breaches 
of engagement. The papers presented to Parlia- 
ment disprove this assertion altogether. They do 
more than this, they convict those wlio make these 
accusations of that kind of reckless misquotation, 
which, although often the effect of mere passion, 
approaches very nearly to the bad faith which they 
charge on Eussia.' ^ 

'Let Eussia and England,' wrote Lord Mayo, 
'declare to the world that they have a common 
mission in Asia, namely, the establishment of good 
government and the civilisation of the mighty nations 

Should we ourselveR have done so in like circumetancesP What was 
actually done was that a military station was established on the north 
bank of the Oxus, and Khiva was placed by iTeaty in subordinate political 
relation to Russia. Tlie town of Khiva and the rich irrigated country to 
the south of the Oxus were left to the Khan, while the country on the 
northern bank was in part transferred to Bokhara and in part retained 
by Russia. This has always been our own method of dealing with Pin- 
darries, Mahratta, and other predatory tribes, there being no other way 
of controlling them and reducing them to order. Upon this statement of 
fact, I ask whether the Russian Government can justly be accused of 
having broken faith with us ? * (See also Catues of the Afghan JV*it\ 
p. 2a9.) 

> Eastern Quest ion , vol. iL p. 301. 

Russian Aggression. 331 

committed to their care,' and even although the 
policy of Lord Beaconsfield should lead to the ex- 
tinction of the * line of independent States between 
their respective frontiers/ which Lord Mayo desired 
to maintain as a ' pledge of good faith ; ' if we meet 
at Merv, or on the slopes of the Hindoo Koosh, we 
shall meet, not as foes, but as friends ! 

332 The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 



When, in 1878, I wrote upon the Afghan war, 
which was then commencing, I had to contend 
against a widespread prejudice that Russia had 
behaved very badly to England in A%hanistan. 
To-day, except in ill-informed quarters, that prejudice 
has greatly subsided. The leaders of both parties in 
the State have repeatedly and pubUcly declared that 
the conduct of the Russian Government in sending an 
envoy to Cabul, at Midsummer, 1878, was perfectly 
justifiable, from every point of view, under the then 
existing circumstances. Lord Beaconsfield himself 
took the opportunity, last year, to state in the House 
of Lords that the Stoletoff Mission was ' quite per- 
missible.' Here are the exact words of your 
Premier : — 

Now, mj Lords, I may speak on that matter with frank- 
ness. It is, indeed, much easier to speak on that matter 
than it would have been a year ago, or eight months ago. 
Eight months ago war was more than probable between this 
country and Russia. An imprudent word might have pre- 
cipitated that war. At present we know, by the gracious 
speech from the Throne, that Her Majesty's relations with 
all Powers are friendly, and they are not less friendly with 

Russia and the Afghan War, 333 

Eussia than with any other Power. I will say of the expe- 
dition which Russia was preparing at the time when she 
thought war was inevitable between our country and herself — 
I will say at once that / hold that those preparations were 
perfectly allowable. They would be no cause of quarrel to 
England if war did not take place, and if war did take 
place of course they would have contributed to bringing 
about the ultimate result, whatever that may have been. 
Had we been in the position of Russia, I doubt not we might 
have undertaken some enterprises of a similar character. . . . 
If war had taken place between the two countries, all the 
preparations which either had made would have been per- 
fectly justifiable. When it was found war was not to take 
place, and Her Majestjr's Government made representations 
to the Coiurt of St. Petersburg, it was impossible to act with 
more promptitude than Russia did. Russia said at once, 
^It is quite true that we did intend to attack you and 
injure you there as much as we could, but war has not taken 
place, and war, I trust, will not take place between Russia 
and England. We have already given orders for our troops 
to retire to their stations beyond the Oxus ; our Ambassador 
shall be considered really as a temporary Ambassador on a 
mission of courtesy, and as soon as possible disappear.' I 
think that that was sufficient and satis&ctory conduct on the 
part of Russia as regards this matter.^ 

Lord Salisbury and Sir Stafford Northcote also 
spoke emphatically on this point. On the other side, 
the testimonies have been not less numerous and 
emphatic. The Duke of Argyll, after referring to the 
preparations of the Indian Government to attack the 
Russian dominions in Central Asia, through Afghan- 
istan, says : — 

The British Government was, of course, quite right to 

* Speech by Lord Beaconsfield in the House of Lords on the Afghan 
War, Dec. 10, 1878. 

334 The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

take every measure in its power to defeat Russia if it coa- 
templated the probability of a war with that Power. But 
if the Government of England bad a perfect right to make 
such preparations and to devise such plans, it will hardly be 
denied that Russia had an equal right to take precautions 
against them. It is true she had an engagement with us 
not to interfere in Afghanistan. But it will hardly be con- 
tended that she was to continue to be bound by ttu8 engage- 
ment when the Viceroy of India was known, or believed, 
to be organising an attack upon her, of which A^hanistan 
was to be the base. We may take it as certain that the 
whole of the Russian proceedings, including the Mission, 
were taken in connection with a policy of self-defence, and 
that the Mission to Cabul was a direct and immediate conse- 
quence, not of any preconceived design on the part of Russia 
to invade India, or gratuitously to break her engagements 
with us in respect to Afghanistan, but of the threatening 
policy of the liritish Cabinet in Europe, and of its intention, 
in pursuance of that policy, to make India the base of hostile 
operations against Russia.' 

Am I, therefore, presuming too much when I 
say tliat the chiefs, both of the Ministry and Opposi- 
tion, have fully justified the Stoletoff Mission ? 

It is sufficient for me to say tliat we did not 
depart from our engagement to exercise no influence 
in Afghanistan hostile to British sovereignty in Lidia 
until the English Government broke its treaty engage- 
ment by sending your fleet through the Dardanelles, 
and that the position taken up by England in Asia 
Minor is far less defensible, from an international 
point of view, than the greatest offence whicli Russia 
lias committed, even in tlie imminent prospect of war 
in Afghanistan. 

' Eattem Que^ion, vol. ii. pp. A\}o, W7. 

RuHstti and the Afghan Wdr. 335 

The Cabul Mission was, as the Duke of Argyll 
plirases it, ' simply a countermove in the game of 
war,' and in that game England, not Russia, took the 
lead. While we were fighting to free Bulgaria, Lord 
Lytton was making strenuous attempts to induce the 
Ameer to enter into an offensive alliance with England 
against Eussia, in which case Afghanistan would have 
been made the base of 30,000 English troops opera- 
ting against us in Turkestan.^ As the Duke of Argyll 
points out, this is in itself sufficient to justify all that 
was done by Bussia to ward off the threatened blow, 
which, however, frankly speaking, we never dreaded 
very much, and now hardly dread at all. 

The Afghan War has, at least, done one thing, 
wliich is very valuable. It has demonstrated the 
impossibility either of a Russian invasion of India, or 
of a British invasion of Turkestan. We have always 
told you that we could not get at your precious India, 
and we may be pardoned if we tell you that you 
would find it just as difficult to invade Russian 
Turkestan. Russia said this. England has proved it. 
The breakdown of your transport, which is the staple 
topic of all telegrams fi"om Cabul and Candahar, 
is a continual reminder of the absurdity of Rus- 
sophobia. Russia could as soon invade England by 
sea, as India through the rugged defiles of Afghan 

The two words. Transport and Commissariat, are 
fatal to any scheme of invasion. In the wilderness of 
hills which intervenes between us, there exists no 

« JOrbiMyr, September 4, 1878. 



336 The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

food to supply the wants of a modern army, even if 
either in Turkestan or India there could be collected 
animals sufficient to carry the impedimenta of the 

The whole of your camels, mules, horses, and 
oxen in India are as inadequate to convey a large 
army to Merv as our navy is to convey a Russian 
expedition to Calcutta. 

Russia cannot invade India, unless you advance 
the Indian frontier to the Oxus. Then, no doubt, 
we shall really be formidable to you. At pre- 
sent we can only do you harm by tempting your 
nervous, or ' Mervous,' authorities, to embark upon 
ruinous expenditure, in order to lock the doors upon 
a nightmare/^ The first Afghan war cost you twenty 
millions. How much the second wiU cost you, your 
Government, probably, will not hurry too much to 
state. Yet you are further off your object to-<lay 
than ever you were before. When our Mission 

^ See Colonel Osborne's paper on ' India and Afghanistan/ Cantem- 
2>orary Review, October, 1870 : — * The want of food, far more than the 
physical difficulties of the country, is, and always will be, the insupermble 
obstacle to carrying on extensive military operations in Afg-haniatan/ 
P. 204. 

' This phrase is not mine but Jjord Salisbury's. Speaking at the 
Merchant Taybrs' banquet, in London, on June 11, 1877, on this very 
subject, the present Secretary for Foreign Afiiedrs said : — * It has gene- 
rally been acknowledged to be an imprudent act to go to war for an idea, 
but if there is anything more unsatisfactory than that it ia going to 
war against a nightmare.' It was in this speech that Lord SalislmrT so 
effectively ridiculed the policy — subsequently adopted as his own— of 
allowing your ' enemy to choose his own ground, to follow hitin across 
deserts and impassable mountain chains into a field which he has choaen 
for himself, instead of waiting till he comes within your own range, 
where only your peculiar arms and peculiar strength will enable vou to 
deal with him with invincible effect.' 

Rtissia and the Afghan Wnr. 337 

visited Cabul in 1878, the Afghans declared that the 
year 1842, when the English had ruined nearly the 
whole of their country, remained fresh in the memory 
of all the inhabitants. These memories have not been 
effaced by your triumphs in 1879, and the more you 
are disUked, the warmer? will be the welcome which 
the Afghans will extend to your enemies, be they who 
they may. 

So far from creating a barrier to Eussia's advance 
to your frontier, your recent operations have removed 
the only poUtical difficulty from our path, which 
would now be easy enough, if the real obstacles had 
not always been natural, not political.^ 

Your Ministers protest they want nothing so 
much as a friendly Afghanistan, but to simple-minded 
Russians your method of courtship is somewhat 
puzzling, and reminds me a Uttle of the foUowing 
anecdote : — 

^ Addreseiiig the House of Commons on April 22, 1873, Sir Charles 
Wingfield, M.P., in the course of a very judleious speech, foretold the 
exact consequences which have followed your intervention : — * Whatever 
European Power first entered Afghanistan would make the Afghans 
their enemies. Our re-appearance in that country would revive the 
memories of our former occupation in the minds of the people. What- 
ever dependence might be placed on the ruler of the country, no reliance 
could be placed on the subjects. A national party would be formed 
which would rouse the fanatical feeling of the people against the English 
alliance, and would prove as great a source of weakness to the present 
ruler as it had done to a former one.' The same lesson is stated even 
more bluntly by an Englishman, who writes after witnessing the evil 
results of your expedition to Cabul. ' England's true policy,' he says, * is 
to leave the Afghans alone, strengthen our own frontier, and if Russia 
should ever become our enemy, to pray for no better luck than that she 
may try to march a large army through the wilderness of hills swarming 
with hostile freebooters, which is the best bulwark of oar Indian Empire. 
The Afghans are the allies of the second comers, and the friends of the 
enemies of their invaders.' 


388 The AngUhRtutsian AlUanee. 

As Frederick the Great's father — Frederick 
William I. — was once walking in a wood, he per- 
ceived a man who was evidently hiding liimself. 
After watching him for some time, at last the King 
took hold of him. ' What is the matter ? ' said he ; 
' why do you hide yourself from me ? * 'I am afraid 
of your Majesty ! ' confessed the poor prisoner, with 
a trembUng voice. ' Afraid ! * exclaimed His Majesty, 
* you ought to love me, and not be afraid ; yes, to 
love me, I tell you ! Lieben muss man michj nicht 
fUrchtenr and upon this the King belaboured the 
peasant with repeated blows from liis cudgel, honestly 
thinking that a stick was the best channel for creating 
affectionate feelings. 

Tins involuntarily conies to my memory when I 
read of tho system which you are employing with 
the -A fghans in order to gain their friendship. Even 
barbarous and aggressive Eussia seems to have less 
diflSculty in winning the affections of the Asiatic 
races than civilised and pacific England. On this 
point let me, as usual, revert to English testimony. 
In an article by Professor Monier Williams on ' Af- 
ghanistan and the Punjaub,' in the ' Contemporar)' 
Review ' (January, 1879), I find some really remark- 
able admissions, mingled, however, with some \er\ 
uncoraplimentarj' observations as to the character of 
the llussian advance in Central Asia. We are so 
famiUar with accusations, I will only quote the ad- 
missions. Your learned professor writes: — 

Russia is far better informed than we are on all political 
suhjects, European and Oriental. Its system assimilates 

Russia and the Afghan War. 339 

itself far more readily than ours to the present condition of 
the Asiatic mind. It brings with it the manifest advantages 
of organised government and security of property. Hence 
Russians advance is often welcanied in Asia as a boon^ 
where ours is deprecated as a grievance^ or hardy tolerated 
as a necessary infliction. 

The troubles you are suffering were all foreseen, 
as well as others which may easily come. Eussia will 
not interfere with your operations. If we are to be 
enemies, the deeper you get entangled in Afghan 
affairs the better. The nearer you approach our 
frontiers, the more vulnerable you become. Annex 
Cabul and Candahar, if you please ; but Bussia told 
you long since what would be the consequences of 
such a step. One of our officials reported to our 
Government, forty years ago, ' Russia feels no anxiety 
at the interference of England in Afghanistan. The 
reports of Vitkevitch have satisfied her that, owing 
to the disorganised condition, the turbulent charac- 
ter, and the conflicting interests of the Afghan tribes, 
Cabul and Candahar can never form a bulwark for 
India. They are more likely to shatter the fabric to 
which they are violently attached, and cause it to 
crumble permanently to ruin.' 

You avoided following our advice, but had you 
done so— had your gallant Major Cavagnari profited 
by Colonel Stoletoffs experience, he might have been 
alive to-day. When our Embassy was at Cabul, 
although the Afghans have no reason to be hostile to 
us, as they are to youj all its members were kept 
almost like prisoners, within four walls, and were 

X 2 

340 The AnghhRussian Alliance. 

refused permission even to see the town. They 
were told there was nothing to see, and that if they 
went out they would excite the fanaticism of the 
populace. Cabul for Christians is either a prison or 
a grave. Colonel Stoletoff avoided the latter, only 
by accepting the former. Major Cavagnari preserved 
his Uberty, but lost his life.^ 

Last year Bussia was put on the defensive, even 
by friendly Enghshmen, for her conduct in Afghan- 
istan. Now that the facts are more clearly seen, the 
guilt is seen not to be at our door, but at that of your 
own Government. 

The Duke of Argyll's views upon that matter 
liave been expi'essed with the fearless frankness 
characteristic of that illustrious statesman. After 
describing liow your Government made the war, the 
Duke says : — 

* The following extract from a letter written by a member of the 
Stoletoff Mission, dated Cabul, October, 1878, may not be without interest 
for English readers. After mentioning that Colonel Stoletoff had persofnal 
access to the Ameer, he says : — ' The other members of the Mission began 
to feel weary of the monotonous life they spent within four walls. Eyery 
one was extremely anxious to visit the town, to see its bazaar, or, at any 
rate, to take a drive or ride round Cabul, which lay temptingly at the 
foot of the palace occupied by our Mission. Vain desire ! At the palace 
gates stands the Guard of Honour, which allows no one to pass without 
the permission of the Vizier. AVatchmen are stationed at every wall. 
AH this appeared too reverential to the members of the Embassy. They 
several times expressed to General Stoletoff their de.<dre to visit the dty 
or its environs, but always met with a decided refusal, which was ex- 
plained on the ground that there was nothing worth seeing in the town. 
Another reason adduced was the fear of exciting the fanaticism of the 
populace.* The same writer mentions that the only escort accompanyiiig 
the Russian mission on its way to Cabul was composed of twenty Cot- 
sacks and a few Uzbecks, and that there never was any question of an oSSa^ 
bive and defensive alliance with Afghanistan, which ' is simply an inven- 
tion of the English press, ever ready to magnify a fly into an elephant' 

Russia and the Afghan War. 341 

I confess I cannot write these sentences without emotion. 
They seem to me to be the record of sayings and of doings 
which cast an indelible disgrace upon our coimtry. The page 
of history is full of the Proclamations and Manifestoes of 
powerful Kings and Crovemments who have desired to cover, 
under plausible pretexts, acts of violence and injustice against 
weaker States. It may well be doubted whether in the whole 
of this melancholy list any one specimen could be found more 
imfair in its accusations, more reckless in its assertions, than 
this Ultimatum Letter addressed to the Ameer of Cabul by 
the Cabinet of the Queen.^ 

That the despatch of our Mission to Cabul was 
' perfectly allowable,' under the circumstances, is now 
admitted by all ; but some people still seem to be 
troubled by General Kaufmann's correspondence with 
the Ameer. 

I will not deny that the terms of the Anglo-Eus- 
sian understanding might be interpreted so as to 
forbid even an exchange of the compliments of the 
season Avith the Ameer. It is sufficient to point out 
that it is quite as capable of another interpretation, 
and that General Kaufmann, in sending messages of 
courtesy to Cabul was acting in good faith. Knowing 
him, as I do, I confess it even shocks me to discuss 
his good faith : it is so obvious ; for his interpretation 
of the understanding was admitted by the Indian 
Government itself. 

To write a letter of courtesy is not to exercise in- 
fluence ; nor is every Bokhariot postman a * Eussian 
agent.' Your Government advised the Ameer to 
cultivate friendly relations with General Kaufmann, 

^ Eadem QiMi^Mm, yoL iL p. 614. 

342 The AngUhRuman AUiance. 

and how could he do so, if he were forbidden, even to 
receive a letter ? But is it not curious that among 
the official papers upon which this latest charge 
against Bussia is based, the Indian Government refers 
complacently to one of General Eaufmann's many 
letters to the Ameer as one of the incontrovertible 
proofs that Bussia was loyally fulfilling her engage- 
ment with England ? Surely, if General Eaufinann's 
letters to Cabul were so flagrant a breach of our pro- 
mise, as even the Daily News said last year, your 
Indian Government would not refer to one of these 
letters as a clear proof that Bussia was keeping her 
word. The correspondence was no secret. Your 
Viceroy, I believe, used to dictate the Ameer's 

General Kaufmann sent an English duplicate of 
his first letter to Shere All. * Probably,* says the 
author of ' The Causes of the Afghan War,* * with a 
view to its being made known to the Government of 
India, and there is nothing all through the corre- 
spondence to indicate any desire on the part of Kauf- 
mann to keep it secret fi'om the British authorities.' ^ 

Lord Mayo, so far from officially resenting the 
correspondence, officially informed Shere Ali that 
General Kaufmann's letter should be a source of 
satisfaction and an additional ground of confidence to 
tlic Ameer, and that the assurances they contained 
had given Iiim (Lord Mayo) unfeigned satisfection, 
for he saw in tliem a further and additional securitv 

» Page 254. 

JSmsia and the Aftjhnn War. 343 

for the peniianency of the Ameer s kingdom and the 
estabhshment of his power.^ 

Besides, to prove, still more, General Kaufinann's 
good faith, let me quote the remark, that ' Both 
General Kaiifmann and Shere All had every reason to 
believe that a correspondence, sanctioned and encou- 
raged by men like Lord Mayo, Lord Napier of Mag- 
dala, and Sir J. iltzjames Stephen, could not be 
otherwise than agreeable to the British Government/ - 

Lord Northbrook was of the same opinion. He 
officially informed Shere Ali that, so far from regard- 
ing these letters with apprehension, the Viceroy and 
Governor-General in CouncU saw in them an addi- 
tional reason for believing that the Eussian authori- 
ties desired to maintain no relations but those of 
amity with the Government of Afghanistan.^ 

Not until your Government began to pick a 
quarrel with the Ameer, and to prepare for war Avith 
Eussia, was there any complaint of these letters. The 
change was on your side ; not on ours. Nor could 
General Kaufmann be expected to understand that 
what was a useful and commendable expression of 
friendship before the rejection of the Berlin Memo- 
randum became unscrupulous intrigue after that 

After Lord Lytton broke off all communication 
with the Ameer, in May, 1877, and began to prepare 
for hostiUties with Bussia, I do not know what was 
done; but if after tliat date the relations between 

' Blue Book, Central Am, No. 1 (1878), p. 184. 
^ CoiMM of the Afghmn Wmr, p. 263. 
* Central Ama^ No. 1 (1878), p. 108. 

3^ The Afiglo-Rnssian Alliance. 

General Kaufmann and the late Ameer became more 
intimate, it was your doing. To prepare to resist a 
meditated attack is ^ perfectly allowable/ under such 
circumstances; and Bussia's good faith cannot be 
affected by anything which took place between the 
Peshawur Conference of May, 1877, and the retire- 
ment of the Stoletoff Mission, at the close of 1878, a 
period during which Bussia was daily expecting to 
be attacked by England.^ 

There is only one other objection which is taken 
to our conduct, and that is, that although we have 
acted within our right towards England, we acted 
cruelly and treacherously to Shere Ali. Having 
compelled liim to receive our Mission, we are told, 
we should have supported him in \\\s war with you. 

I hardly tliink such a quixotic interpretation of 
duty would commend itself to the judgment of Eng- 
lish statesmen. Under great pressure, Shere Ah 
received our Mission when war was beUeved to be 
imminent ; but he did not commit himself to us in 
any way, and as soon as the crisis passed away, our 
Mission was withdrawn. I hardly think we were 
bound in honour to go to war Avith England, because 
your Ministers eagerly availed themselves of the pre- 
text afforded by the appearance of our Mission to 
declare the war they had been preparing smce 1876. 
We had not committed the Ameer in any way. We 
did not advise him to refuse to receive the British 
Mission. We had received nothmg at his hands. 

' This point is clearly and succinctly stated by that couragvouB and 
uncompromising assailant of popular misconceptions concerning Ruatia, 
the I'ev. ^Inlcolro Maci^oll, in the Spectator^ Jan. 3, 1880. 

Rtissia and the Afghan War. 345 

Our advance to his capital was forced upon us by 
your threats of war. Why, then, should we have 
made your attack upon the Ameer a casus belli ? 

'Afghanistan was beyond the sphere of our 
interests.' Our intervention on the Ameer's behalf, 
diplomatically or otherwise, would have inflamed your 
animosity against us both, ivithout soothing any- 
thing. Pardon me, but if your Ministers had been 
but reasonable, and had given the Ameer a little 
breatliing time, he would have been able to clear 
himself of all suspicion of complicity with our 
advance ; but the opportunity was denied him, and 
Lord Lytton, delighted ^vith so plausible a pretext, 
hurried into war. This incident, I admit, is a painful 
one. But, perhaps, after all, it will not be Anthout 
its uses, if it enables you to understand that a real 
entente cordiale between England and Eussia might 
do more good than the present policy of systematic 
antagonism, and would better serve the interests of 
peace and the prosperity of both. 

346 7%^ Anglo-Russian Alliance. 



^ The Russians have as much right to conquer Central 
Asia as the English to seize India/ observed a polite 
Englishman, the other day, evidently thinking that he 
had gone to the extreme of condescending kindness ! 

' May I be quite frank ? ' said I. ' Well, it seems 
to mc that we liave a great deal better right in 
Central Asia than you have in India ! ' So startling a 
remark led to a long explanation. Perhaps Russian 
views on that point might be of some little interest in 
England. I scarcely hope to convince many of my 
readers, but I think it really is a duty to speak out 
one's mind sometimes, even when you feel yourself 
nothing but a poor exponent of the cause of truth. 
I know my oAvn shortcomings, but personal con- 
siderations must be put aside under certain circum- 

Well, now, as to the question of Central Asia. 
Turkestan is at our door. Neither precipitous moun- 
tain range nor stormy sea divided the Russian plain 
from the Tartar steppe. Our merchants have always 
traded with the Khanates ; caravans have wended 
their way wearily over the monotonous expanse of 

Utissians in Central Asia. 347 

the Central Asian desert for centuries. Every disturb- 
ance in Turkestan affected business in Bussia. It 
became a necessity, for the protection of the legitimate 
channels of commerce, to estabhsh some authority in 
these regions more respectable than the nomadic 
tribes who levied black mail with a tlireat of death. 
Step by step, in the course of successive generations, 
the Eussian civiliser encroached upon the Tartar 
savage. Evils tolerable at a distance are intolerable 
next door. Anarchy, objectionable everywhere, is 
unbearable when it infringes upon the frontiers of 
order. The extension of our sovereignty over the 
tribes of Tartary was the unavoidable consequence of 
our geographical position.^ Now : Was it so with you 
in India ? You had to pass the Cape of Good Hope, 
and sail half round the world, before you reached 
the land which you have subdued. The internal 
tranquillity of India had no bearing upon English 
interests. So you had, at first, no more right to con- 
quer Hindostan than Eussia has to annex Brazil. 

Eussia in Central Asia is without a rival, as she is 
without an ally. If she did not establish order, 
toleration, and peace among those rude tribes on her 
frontiers, the work would have remained undone to 
this day. In India, on the contrary, you have to 

' Mr. GladfltoDe in his third AGdloibian speoch sajs : — ' The poadon 
of RusBia in Central Asia I helieve to be one that has in the main been 
forced upon her against her will. She has been compelled — and this is 
the impartial opinion of the world — she has been compelled to extend her 
frontier southward in Central Asia by causes in some degree analogous 
to, but certainly more stringent and imperative than, the causes whioh 
have commonly led us to extend, in a far more important manner, our 
frontier in Lidif .' 

348 Tlie Anylo-Ruman Alliance. 

justify your conquest, not only against the reproaches 
of the conquered nations, but against the protests of 
the Dutch, the Portuguese, and the French, whom 
you ejected from the dominions which you had 
marked for your own. Bussia in Central Asia does 
the poHce work of an enormous expanse of thinly- 
populated, poverty-stricken land. She taxes the 
peasants of Saratoff and Kiefi* to maintain order in 
Khokand and Taslikent. The Administration spends 
two roubles in collecting one. The EngUsh people, 
I think, pay nothing for the government of India. 
The Hindoos had to pay the expense of their conquest, 
and they defray at this moment the whole charges of 
the foreign administration which is maintained in 
India by EngUsh bayonets. 

India is rich. Central Asia is poor. The whole 
of the revenue raised in Turkestan is not half a 
luilUon in the year. In India you raise more than 
fifty millions. 

There was little to plunder in Tashkent — much 
less than the EngUsh nabobs found in one of the 
great cities of Northern India. 

There was more need for Russians in Central 
Asia than there was for EugUshmen in Bengal. 
The Tartar of tlie Steppe needs a poUceman much 
more tlian the timid Bengalee. India had a civiU- 
sation of her oAvn, the splendour of which is attested 
to this day by those architectural remains to which 
Mr. Fergusson has devoted such patient genius and 
so many years of unremitting toil. The Khanates 
were hotbeds of savagery and fanaticism. The con- 

liiimaus in Central Asia. 349 

dition of these Tartar States was unspeakably bad. 
Arminius Vamb^ry is one of the greatest Eussian- 
haters in the world, but he admits that our soldiers 
have made it possible for Europeans to live in 
Bokhara. Formerly, Vamb^ry himself could only 
visit the city disguised as a Moliammedan. Mr. 
Schuyler says : — * Tlie rule of Eussia is on the whole 
beneficial to the natives, and it would be manifestly 
unjust to them to withdraw her protection, and leave 
them to anarchy and to the unbridled rale of fanatical 

We do not grudge England her Indian Empire, 
but when we are reproached with territorial greed 
for liaving annexed some deserts close to our frontiers, 
we have a right to ask England to look to herself. 
India is yours, and improved by your rule. May it 
remain yours for ever ! But the happy possessors of 
that magnificent Empire should not reproach us for 
our poor Tartar steppes. To understand the dif- 
ficulties of our position in Central Asia, look not to 
India, but to your West African Settlements. You 
hold territories there which do not pay their ex- 
penses; they involve occasional wars which you 
Avisely undertake without humbly asking the bene- 
diction of Eussia or any other Power. Nevertheless, 
you do not give them up ; you even extend them 
from time to time without asking for our leave. Your 
keeping these provinces is perhaps more generous 
than giving them up ; but there are Eussians cruel 
enough to read with a little smile of your troubles 
with the King of Ashantee when they remember with 

360 Tlie Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

what admii'able fortitude you bore our difficulties 
wth the Khan of Kliiva. 

In Central Asia Bussians suppress the slave-trade 
as you do on the African coast, although at the first 
your views upon the subject were less philanthropic 
— ^if I remember well. Wherever the Bussian flag 
fUes freedom to the slave is guaranteed. If England 
had but joined us in our crusade agahist the Turk, 
the last stronghold of the slave-trade in Europe would 
have already ceased to exist. English people have no 
right to ignore this phase of the question when they 
can refer to such an unimpeachable 'Statement of 
Facts on Turkey and the Slave Trade ' as that written 
by Mr. F. W. Chesson, whose name is familiar to 
everyone as the energetic and fearless defender of the 
oppressed. One of the numerous complaints against 
us Bussians is that we do not open the markets of 
Central Asia to the manufactures of all the world. 
Were you free-traders when you first conquered 
India ? The East India Company, I believe, held as 
strict a monopoly as ever existed in the world. 

Promises to desist from further conquests, as 
EngUsh experience goes,^ cannot always be kept. The 

' Since the Afghan war there is no need to refer to so distant a date 
as 1783. Speaking of the negotiations which preceded the commence- 
ment of hostilities, the Duke of Argyll says : — ' In a very humiliating 
way, the whole of these transactions carry us back to the days of Clire. 
AVe are reminded only too much of the unecrupulousness of his con- 
duct. ... I speak of what was bad or doubtful in his conduct, not of 
what was great. In this aspect of them the proceedings I have re- 
corded have been worse than his. . . . The Government of India has 
paltered with the force of existing Treaties ; it has repudiated solemn 
pledges ; it has repeated over and over again insincere profesnons ; and it 
has prepai-ed new Treaties full of ''tricky saving clauses.'' ' — Eatttm 
Question, voL ii. pp. 616 to 518. 

Rumans in Central Asia. 351 

illustrious Burke, in the House of Commons in 1783, 
said that * from Mount Imaus to Cape Comorin there 
is not a single Prince or State with which the English 
Government had come into contact which they had 
not sold. There was not a single treaty which they 
ever made with a native State or Prince which they 
had not broken/ 

But we admit, in spite of Burke's severe blame, 
that, though probably only yielding to the necessity 
of her position, England, at all events, has given to 
India the blessings of a civilised and stable Govern- 
ment. Is Bussia not entitled to the same amount of 
credit ? 

Even Lord Beaconsfield views wdth no mistrust 
the advance of Eussia in Asia — that is, if you can 
beUeve what he said not so very long ago from his 
place in ParUament — where, I suppose, he speaks 
with more precision than after dinner at the Guild- 
hall. The Premier used the following words — which 
I quote the more gladly because it is so seldom that 
I can appeal to liis testimony : — * I think that Asia is 
large enough for the destinies of Bussia and England. 
Far from looking forward with alarm to the develop- 
ment of Bussia in Central Asia, I see no reason why 
they should not conquer Tartary any more than why 
England should not have conquered India.' ^ 

Why . should English Turkophiles out-Herod 
Herod ? 

^ May ld7G. 

352 The AngUhRussian Alliance. 



What is the Traditional Policy of Russia ? 

The Traditional Policy of Russia is an alliance 
with England ! 

Long before Russia bowed beneath the Tartar 
yoke, our reigning Prince, Vladimir Monomachus, 
married Gyda, daughter of your noble Harold, who 
fell on the fatal field of Senlac. 

The Tartar invasion, lasting nearly three centuries, 
did not favour communications, much less an alliance, 
l^etween Russia and England. 

But after we got rid of the Tartars, Ivan the 
Fourth, graphically sumamed the Terrible, sent an 
Embassy to your Queen Elizabeth to negotiate a 
close alUance with England, and according to several 
historians, lie was even anxious to marry her. Your 
Queen, however, preferring * single blessedness ' re- 
fused, and the death of Ivan IV. brought the nego- 
tiations to an end. 

Since then matrimonial ties were not spoken of 
for nearly three hundred years, but many efforts 
have been made by us to estabhsh a cordial under- 
standing, by other means, between the two nations.^ 

' It 18 curious to find that almost in the first sentence of the first 

The Traditional Policy of Russia. 353 

Our efforts, however, have too often been paralysed 
by lying legends and calumnies invented by our 
enemies, to prejudice the ignorant against us. One of 
these — perhaps the most famous — the spurious Will 
of Peter the Great, written nearly a hundred years 
after Peter's death by the ingenious Frenchman, 
Lesur, is frequently appealed to, as the most con- 
vincing proof of Russia's wickedness: nevertheless, 
forgery though it is, it contains one point which 
was well adapted to Eussian views, viz., the Seventh 
Article, which is as follows : 

* Seek the alliance of England, on account of our 
commerce, as being the country most useful to us for 
the development of our navy and mercantile marine, 
and for the exchange of our produce against her 

Eussian Emperors have always been of the opinion 
that Eussia and England are natural allies, even nI 
although circumstances have occasionally thrown them 
into temporary antagonism to a mistaken English 

Up to the very outbreak of the Crimean War, our 
Emperor Nicholas was most sincerely anxious to be 
' upon terms of closest amity with England.' In his 
famous conversations with Sir Hamilton Seymour, 
that anxious desire was most manifest.* 

Speech from the Throne after the acoeenon of the prosent Govenunent to 
office the Queen speaks as follows: — *Mj relations with aU foreign 
Powers continue to be most firiendlj. • . . The marriage of my son, the 
Duke of Edinburgh, with the Grand Dochess Marie Alezandrowna of 
Busflia M at once a source of happiuMS to myself, and a pledge of friend- 
ship between two great Empires.' 

^ < You know my opinions with regard to England. Were we agreed, 

A A 


354 Thf- Avfflo-Ruftxian Alliance. 

Mr. Kingkke says : — 

The Emperor Nicholas had laid down for himself a rule, 
which was always to guide his conduct on the Eastern 
Question, and it seems to be certain that at this time (the 
eve of the Turkjab war of 1853), even in his most angry 
moments, he intended to cling to his resolve. Vhat he had 
determined was that no temptation should draw him into 
hostile conflict with England.' 

As to the attitude of Bussia before the late war, 
even our most exacting critics admit that our Em- 
peror could not possibly have done more than he did 
to secure the alliance and the co-operation of Eng- 
land. The Livadia despatch was but the culmination 
of a long series of similar overtures for English friend- 
ship — overtures which, I regret to say, met with but 
cool and scanty responses from your Govemmeut. 

In making these advances, our Government was 
only carT5"ing out the ancient, the trnditional policy 
of Russia. The change has been with you ; not with 

At the beginning of the seventeenth century, 
Boris Godonnoff sent an envoy to London to urge that 
England should unite with Russia and other Christian 
powers to subdue the Turks and free the Christians of 
the East.^ 

During the eighteenth century, the two Powers 

I am quite without anxietj as to the West of Europe; it is imnittten*] 
what the otbere maj think or do.' Aguu in JaniiaTT, 1653, alluding to 
the probable fall of Turkej, 'It is very important that England and 
Rueeia ahould come to a perfectly good undeTstandiDg upon these affiura, 
and that neither ahould bkke auj dedaire step of which the other ia not 

' ImMtioH of the Crimea, vol. i. p. Iflfl. 

* See antf, ' RuMiia'a Foreign Policy," p, 206. 

The Traditional Policy of Russia, 355 

were frequently in alliance both in peace and in war. 
On one occasion, Russian soldiers garrisoned the 
Channel Islands. On another, Eussian fleets were 
re-fitted in English dockyards. English admirals 
often commanded Eussian navies, while Eussian and 
English soldiers, as faithful allies, fought side by side 
on many a hard-contested field. 

The great statesmen of both countries recognised 
the importance of the Anglo-Eussian alliance. Our 
Minister, M. Panin, in 1766, informed the envoy of 
your Earl of Chatham, that he entertained 'the 
strongest desire of entering into the strictest engage- 
ments, and the most intimate friendship with Eng- 
land, being convinced that my policy could neither be 
solid nor perfect unless Great Britain were a party to 
it.' It was the repeatedly declared conviction of 
Prince Potemkin that the union of Eussia and Eng- 
land was absolutely essential to the peace of the 

That conviction has been strengthened, rather 
than weakened, by the history of the last hundred 
years. Prince Worontzoff, our ambassador at the 
Court of St. James, was a devoted advocate of the 
Anglo-Eussian Alliance, and his convictions are 
shared by the Imperial Chancellor, Prince Gortscha- 

The most illustrious English 'statesmen concurred 
with Prince Potemkin and M. Panin, in the value 
they placed on the alliance between the two countries, 
Chatham was not ashamed to declare that * he was 
altogether a Eussian.' Fox, Burke, even Pitt, as well 

A A 2 

35G The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

as Canning and others nearer our time, have either 
concluded treaties of friendship with Bussia, or 
expressed themselves as most favourable to the Bus- 
sian alliance.^ 

It is not a century since it Was the custom to refer 
to Bussia in Parhament as ^ the natural, ancient, and 
traditional ally of England.' 

In the great crisis of European history, England 
and Bussia were the foremost opponents of the 
Emperor Napoleon, and it was to their joint endea- 
vours that Europe owed the overthrow of the ascend- 
ancy of France. 

You have now occupied Cyprus as * a strong place 
of arms/ to menace Bussia, but your previous Medi- 
terranean occupation — that of the Ionian Islands — 
was undertaken at the suggestion of your Bussian 
ally. Nor did you always dread Bussia as a Medi- 
terranean Power, for England lias insisted upon our 
fleet entering that sea, and once negotiations were 
even begun to cede us a naval station at Minorca, 
then an English possession. 

Is it not a remarkable proof of the utility of the 
Bussian alliance that on two occasions, when the 
English Government so far forgot its true interests as 
to threaten to make war upon Bussia, the war should 
have been prevented by the vigorous protests of the 
English people?* 

' ' The Whigs of that day (after the Congnen of Vienna) were not 
behind the Tories in their devotion to the Csar. It maj perhaps be 
more correctiy said that the alliance with Russia received eepeciaUy the 
approval of that distinguished section of the Whigs who followed in the 
footsteps of (;%arlea Fox.' — Thirty Years of Foreign Policy, pp. 61-2. 

• 1701 and 1870. 

The Traditional Policy of Russia. 357 

The instinct of the nation was wiser than the 
statecraft of its rulers, and the English succeeded on 
both occasions in doing that all but impossible thing 
— even in Constitutional countries — of restraining a 
Prime Minister who was bent on going to war. We 
are not ungrateful for the generous sympathies and 
natural friendliness of the English people. We only 
regret that in two important crises of your history, 
your Constitutional Government so misrepresented 
your real feelings as to render it necessary, to pre- 
vent war, to overrule your Ministry by an almost 
revolutionary agitation. 

When Empress Catherine 11. heard of tlie services 
whicli Mr. Fox had rendered to the cause of humanity 
in restraining Mr. Pitt from making war upon Bussia 
about Otchakoff, she placed his bust between those of 
Cicero and Demosthenes, exclaiming, ' II a delivre 
par son eloquence la patrie et la Eussie d'une guerre 
pour la quelle il n'y avait ni justice ni raisons.' 

Mr. Fox, in his place in Parliament expressed him- 
self highly gratified by the distinction conferred upon 
him by the Empress, and made the memorable decla- 
ration : — ' With regard to Bussia, it has ever been my 
opinion that she was the Power in Europe with whom 
the cultivation of reciprocal ties of friendship, both 
commercial and political, was most natural and of the 
greatest consequence to this country.' 

Now, if Eussians venture lu express their grati- 
tude to an English statesman, whose eloquence, like 
that of Mr. Fox, has indeed delivered both countries 
from a senseless war, he is decried as a ' Eussian 

358 The Anglo'Itussian Alliance. 

agent ' and a traitor to his country. The change is 
not exactly an improvement, nor is it calculated to 
^rengthen good feeling on either side. 

Englishmen may yet discover that these prejudices 
against us are detrimental to their interests. Seventy 
years ago, an English author declared that Russia, 
the most powerful, the most natural, the most useful 
of our allies, has so intimate a connection of interests 
with us that the soundest policy must dictate to us a 
union of design and co-operation in action.^ If that 
were true then, how much more so must it be now, 
for since then we have divided Asia between us ? 

Even Lord Palmerston, when the Crimean War 
was still an affair of yesterday, declared to our Ambas- 
sador, Count Chreptovitch, that * Eussia and England 
had great interests in common ; and that as long as 
they did not come into collision about Turkey or 
Persia, there was no reason why they should not act 
in concert on many important matters.' * 

To Russians, it seems that the danger of a collision 
about the affairs of these countries is the greatest of 
reasons why the two Powers should act in concert. 

Russia has always particularly sought for concert 
with England in dealing with Turkey. Much as the 
Russian Government desired the English alliance 
which Lord Chatham pressed upon us, it was refused 
unless England would act in concert with us in 
Turkish affairs. That principle, rejected by Chatham, 
was accepted by Pitt in 1795. Only four years after 

* Eton's Survet/ of the Turkish Empii-ey p. 404. 
' Ashley's Life of Lord Palttieraton, vol. ii. p. 116, 

The Traditional Policy of Russia. 359 

he had been threatening us with war, a treaty was 
concluded which conceded that principle of common 
action in the Levant, for which Russia had never 
ceased to contend. 

Is not that fact a happy augury for the future ? 
Four years after the War Vote of 1791, the two 
Powers entered into a close alliance. Who knows but 
the same thing may happen within four years of the 
War Vote of 1878 ? 

Even during this century, Eussia and England 
have oftener been friends than foes. In the Napoleonic 
wars, the EngUsh fleet menaced Constantinople 
because the Turks had declared war against Eussia. 
It was not in Eussia that the battle of Navarino was 
condemned as *an untoward event,' and in 1877, 
in spite of the bitterness occasioned by the war, we 
celebrated its jubilee with enthusiasm. 

As we fought together against the Turks, so we 
have also, I regret to say, been alhed in support of 
the Sultan. When Mehemet Ali threatened to over- 
turn the Ottoman Empire, Eussian troops occupied 
Constantinople, while an English fleet cruised off the 
coast of Syria. 

The Crimean war was, indeed, *an untoward 
event,' but the despatches of Lord John Eussell, before 
war broke out, bore repeated testimony to the earnest- 
ness and sincerity with which our Emperor laboured 
to estabhsh a good understanding and concerted 
action with England in the affairs of Tuikey. 

Since the Peace of Paris, in 1856, Eu»w*ja has never 


360 The AngUhRussian Alliance. 

been at war Mrith England, while she has frequentlj 
energetically seconded English policy. 

At the Conference of Constantinople, General 
Icrnatieff abandoned his own scheme of reforms, in 
order to give a more effectual support to that ol 
Lord Salisbury; and after the Conference failed, 
Kussia exhausted every diplomatic expedient to pre- 
serve the concert with England, before she drew the 

Not until it was seen that the only concert with 
England was concert in inaction, with all wrongs un- 
redressed, and all the Slavs left in slavery, did Russia 
act alone. 

But even when compelled unassisted to do single- 
handed the duty of all Europe, Russia displayed the 
most scrupulous regard for ' British Interests.' As- 
certaining them from Lord Derby at the beginning of 
the war, Russia brought the contest to a triumphant 
close without threatening a single point specified by 
your Foreign Minister. 

We sent you our terms of peace before we crossed 
the Danube, and we sent you the Treaty of San 
Stefano, as soon as it reached St. Petersburg. 

At the Berlin Congress we gave way repeatedly to 
satisfy your demands, and surrendered all exclusive 
privileges in order to act in concert with Europe. 

How England rewarded this, I need not say. But 
unless we surrendered the Christians of the East to 
the vengeance of the Turk, we could do no more. Li 
fact, truly speaking, we even went too far. The 
aspirations, the ardent wishes of the Russian people 

The Traditional Policy of Russia. 361 

have been sacrificed for your friendship. One step 
more would be almost treason to our brethren — a 
betrayal of our duty. Such a price could not be 
paid — no ! — not even for the purchase of the English 

If England, if the Enghsh people identify their in- 
terests with the maintenance of Turkish power over 
all the peoples south of the Balkans, then I re- 
luctantly admit that any alliance between us is 
impossible. As has frequently been said, * at any 
cost, without even counting the cost,' Eussia must do 
her duty. For us, there is no choice possible between 
the Slavs and their oppressors. Some of our officials, 
estranged from their own nation by their false 
education, dislike the very name of Slavs ; but as long 
as there is the slightest link between them and the 
llussian people, even they would not dare so far to 
forget their duty as to sanction an alliance on such 

llussians know well that nothing great can be 
obtained without sacrifices. K new sacrifices are 
needed, what does it prove ? Only that we have not 
done enough. No power on earth can stop the natural 
development of events. The future of the Slavonic 
world is as clear to us as the path of honour which 
we have to follow. 

But are we to believe that the English people, 
after all their protestations of sympathy with the 
Eastern Christians, will insist upon such a shameful 
l)rice for their alliance, as a support of the Turkish 
power ? 

362 Ttie Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

It is impossible ! 

I look forward confidently to the conclusion of a 
good understanding between Eussia and England, 
based upon the peaceful but effective elimination of 
Turkish authority from Europe. 

Only on that basis is real alliance possible. 

And so with the farther East. Co-partners in the 
work of civilising Asia, our entente cordiale is the key 
to the peace of the Continent. 

Destroy it, and from Constantinople to Japan 
there will be ceaseless intrigues, insurrections, and 

Mr. J. Anthony Fronde, whose courageous ad- 
vocacy of an Anglo-Eussian Alliance dates back to the 
dark times of the Crimean War, expressed this truth 
very clearly when he wrote in his admirable * Short 
Studies on Great Subjects,' ' We may be sure that if 
it was understood in the East, that Eussia and 
England, instead of enemies were cordial friends, that 
they recognised each other's position and would assist 
each other in difficulties, the imagination of resistance 
would be quenched in the certainty of its hope- 

It is not sufficient that we should not be at open 
war, to secure peace in Asia. We must be staunch 
friends, and act in cordial concert within our re- 
spective spheres. The Oriental world is convulsed 
with war when Eussia and England are in opposition. 
Cross purposes between St. Petersburg and London 
may be confined to despatches in Europe, but they 
rcjsult in crossed swords in Persia and Afghanistan. 

The Traditional Policy of Russia, 363 

The only hope of barbarism in Asia lies in discord 
between the two civilising Empires. K we are united, 
civilisation is safe ; but a policy of antagonism, even 
although we do not draw the sword, may end in re- 
storing Asia to the Asiatics. 

Believe me, it is not Bussia who will suffer most 
by persistence in this policy of hostility and sus- 
picion. Our stake in Asia is trivial compared with 
yours. Turkestan entails a costly drain upon our 
exchequer, nor can we import Turkomans to make 
war in Europe. With you in India it is different. 
We do not want India. We could not take India if 
we did want it. But when the visit of a single 
Eussian envoy to Cabul induces you to undertake a 
costly, useless war, what hope is there of peaceful 
progress, and the development of civilisation in the 
East, if the two Powers are to be permanently 
estranged ? 

Lord Napier and Ettrick, who, after he had left 
his ambassador's post at St. Petersburg, was con- 
sidered in this country, as well as in Kussia, as a de- 
cided Eussophobist, referring, on December 9, 1878, 
in his speedi in Parliament, to the Eussian mission to 
Cabul, frankly said : — 

Sussia had moved forward in the direction of national 
sympathies and aspirations of the people, and with consum- 
mate prudence. With a country so constituted, it was 
necessary to employ judicious means for securing amity, if 
not absolutely alUance, and the best means the Government 
could employ was an absolute plainness and frankness, so 
that Kussia should not be in any doubt as to the course we 
should pursue with reference to Afghanistan. He thought 

364 The Aiufh'Russian Alliance, 

that, after the termination of the war, there should be a 
definite treaty between England and Bussia, as it would be 
likely to have a tranquillising effect upon India. 

Our interests are identical, our mission is the 
same ; why then can we not revert to the traditional 
policy of Eussia, and become once more firm allies 
and good friends ? 

It is not only in Asia that the two nations stand 
^ide by side. In Europe we occupy similar ground 
in resisting the authority of Papal Kome ; each in our 
own way, we protest against the corruptions and 
abuses of the Vaticanate Church. 

Thus presenting a common front, alike against the 
Mohammedan barbarism of Asia, and the spiritual 
despotism of Europe, is it not time that we should 
frankly recognise the similarity of our mission, and 
loyally support each other in the face of the common 

* The Eussians,' says Mr. Froude, * though our 
rivals in the East, had in Europe, till the outbreak of 
the Crimean War, been our surest allies.' Even since 
then, English Cabinets have had no reason to regret 
the existence of Eussia in Europe. It is not so many 
years ago that Lord Beaconsfield's Government allied 
itself with the Eussian Empire to prevent a renewal 
of the Franco-German War, and I believe it was Tx>rd 
Beaconsfield who pointed, ten years ago, to an 
Anglo-Eussian alUance as a means of preventing 
. Napoleon's March ' a Berlin,* which terminated so 
disastrously at Sedan. 

The Traditional Policy of Russia. 365 

We are also united in the great humanitarian 
crusade against slavery and the slave trade. 

You look back with pride to the abolition of 
slavery in your colonies ; we glory in the emancipa- 
tion of our serfs — that measure which for ever secured 
our gratitude to Emperor Alexander, who understood 
and supported the best aspirations of his people. 

It is your proud boast that slaves cannot breathe 
upon English soil. It is not less true of Russia, who 
for the last hundred years has waged unceasing war 
against the slave trade, both in Europe and in Asia. 
It was our conquest of the Crimea which suppresseil 
the market in which Polish and Russian captives were 
sold like cattle by the Mussulman, and the first-fruits 
of our entry into Khiva was the release of all the 
slaves in the Khanate. 

But why enter into detaib ? Whether it is in the 
field of exploration, or in the domain of science, or in 
any other of the numberless departments of our com- 
j)lex civilisation, you will find that Russians are fellow- 
workers with you, neither unfriendly nor unworthy. 

Why then should you persist in regarding us as 
worse than declared enemies ? — A very intelligent 
friend of mine, who has enjoyed unusual opportuni- 
ties of studying Russian and English policy writes to 
me : — 

The popular clamour against Russia in England is not 
only unjust, but childish and contemptible, and defeats its 
own purpose. To tell you the truth, I sometimes blush for 
the half childish, half brutal national egotism of a great part 
of my countrymen. If we have to fight, let us do so and be 
(lone with it, respecting each other as honourable opponents, 

866 The Angb-Russian Alliance. 

but (like yourself) I do not see the least necessity for fight- 
ing. It would be folly in England to go to war to put on 
his legs the incurably Sick Man, and it would be equally 
foolish of Sussia to go to war in order to accelerate by a few 
years the inevitable death of the patient. How many diflS- 
culties might be removed by a genuine understanding 
between Bussia and England ! 

Why should there not be such an understanding 
between us ? 

Surely it has been suflSciently proved that we could 
do each other a great deal of harm, although not 
without injuring many a noble cause, which we 
ought to serve, if we really care for Humanity and 

It is for you — not for us — now to decide whether 
we are to be Friends or Foes ! 




And now my book is finished ! 

As I look over its pages and remember the 
friendly welcome which my poor attempts to promote 
a better understanding between England and Russia 
have received from some of the noblest men in both 
countries, I feel almost ashamed of the moments of 
despair and bitterness which I tried in vain to con- 
ceal. And let me say, also, in parting, how gladly I 
shall welcome the first proof that my bitterness was a 
little unjust. Whatever may be the diflSculties of the 
present, they are, I hope, but temporary ; and they 
have not been without some permanent compensa- 
tion. Even the hostility manifested in certain quar- 
ters has not been without its uses, for it evoked a 
generous protest, which formed a new and precious 
link of sympathy and confidence between us. That 
sympathy and confidence may, I trust, be as an aurora, 
promising the advent of a new and brighter day, 
when * the mist of distrust,' which has so long hung 
over us, will fade away and finally disappear. 

The removal of national misunderstandings is a 
task which often baffles the wisdom of the greatest 


368 The An/fb-Russiivi AUiance. 

statesmen, and defies the efibrt of the most powei 
monarchs. For a humble person like me to work 
that direction, however feebly, is naturally regard 
even by myself, as somewhat ridiculous. My r 
however, is that of a pis aUer^ whose abiding h< 
has been, that ere long so great a work may fell i 
more able and powerful hands. 

The fear of ridicule has blighted many a no 
aspiration, and the sacrifices demanded by loyaltj 
truth and justice are not confined to the battlefi 
alone. The struggle for the Ideal — by its very 
sence, unattainable — is always somewhat quixot 
but would life be worth living without it ? 

Coming back to the principal object of my be 
I must repeat what I have already said several tim 
England and Russia, cordially united, can overcc 
many difficulties, otherwise insuperable, and sc 
many good causes worthy of the support of two gi 
Christian Powers. 

We must unite in order to atone for the sufieri 
already occasioned to others by our mutual hosti] 
It is a debt of honour, which has to be paid be; 
the others, and no time should be lost before mo\ 
in that direction. 

But unless there is a radical change for the bet 
there may be a change for the worse, the coi 
quences of which, in many respects, would be fat€ 

The issue now Ues, not in the hands of the O 
nets, but in those of the peoples. 

To bring about an entente cordiale between E 
land and Russia is indispensable for the civilisatioi 

Some Last Words. 369 

the Orient, and is the only good standpoint from 
which can be approached the great problems of 
Europe and Asia. 

I may be told, perhaps, that by expressing too 
frankly and unreservedly the feeUngs of Eussians on 
England's poUcy, I injure more than I serve the 
cause I have at heart. But this would be an indirect 
accusation of England against which I protest. 

In spite of all that has been done, written, and 
said, I firmly beUeve that many Englishmen will not 
lose sight of the motive which guided my pen, and 
pardon my want of skilful reserve and concealment. 

To understand why we are displeased with each 
other is the first indispensable step for removing the 
misunderstanding. Had I minced my words too 
much, had I shrunk from stating facts with the 
utmost frankness, I should not have been a faithful 
and true exponent of Russian views. 

Once more, then, I review in these ' last words * 
the question which I have pressed, I fear, perhaps 
almost ad nauseam^ in every page : Why can we not 
be friends ? 

This inflamed animosity, so sedulously fostered by 
interested parties, is a reproach to our intelligence and 
our sense of duty. 

We both have nothing to gain, and very much to 
lose, by substituting hatred for cordiaUty and suspi- 
cion for confidence ; nor is it we alone who suffer. Every 
human being between the outposts of the two Empires 
is more or less affected by the relations existing 
l)etween England and Russia. 

B B 

370 The Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

The Russian people have been reluctantly driven 
into an attitude of antagonism to England. Gladly 
would we hail any prospect of escape from that in- 
voluntary position, and heartily would we welcome 
your co-operation in that task of developing the liber- 
ties of the Christian East, which is now proclaimed 
as the policy of Liberal England, but which has always 
been the Historical Mission of my country. 

O. K. 



The following was Mr. Froude's Preface to the first 
series of the 0. K. Letters, published in December, 
1877, under the title, ' Is Russia Wrong?' 

Very few words will suffice for an introduction of the fol- 
lowing letters. The writer is a Russian lady well acquainted 
with England, who has seen with regret the misconceptions 
which she considers prevail among us as to the character of 
her countrymen ; she has therefore employed such skill as 
she possesses in an honourable attempt to remove those mis- 
conceptions. Individuals, however great their opportunities, 
can but speak with certainty of what they personally know, 
and *0. K.' may draw too wide inferences from the ex- 
periences of her own circle; but she writes in good &ith, 
and any contribution to oiu* knowledge, which is true as far 
as it goes, ought to be welcome to us — welcome to us espe- 
cially at the present crisis, when the wise or unwise conduct 
of English statesmen may affect incalculably for good or evil 
the fortimes of many millions of mankind. To Bussia and 
England has fallen the task of introducing European civilisa- 
tion into Asia. It is a thankless labour at the best; but 
circumstances have forced an obligation upon both of us, 
which neither they nor we can relinquish ; and our success 
depends for its character on the relations which we can 
establish between ourselves. If we can work harmoniously 
together as for a common object, the progress of the Asiatic 


372 The Angb-Russian Alliance. 

people will be peaceful and rapid. If we are to be jealous 
rivals, watching each other's movements with suspicion, and 
on the look-out to thwart and defeat each other, every king- 
dom and tribe from the Bosphorus to the Wall of China will 
be a, centre of intrigue ; and establishment of the new order 
of things may be retarded for centuries, or disgraced by wars 
and revolutions from which we shall all alike be sufterers. 
On the broadest groimds, therefore, it is our interest to be 
on good terms with Russia, unless there is something in the 
Muscovite proceedings so unqualifiedly bad that we are posi- 
tively obliged to separate oiurselves from them. And before 
arriving at such a conclusion, we must take more pains than 
we have done hitherto to know what the Russians are. If 
we could * crumple ' them up as Mr. Cobden spoke of doing, 
we might prefer to reign in the East without a rival. But 
* crumpling up ' is a long process, in which nothing is certain 
but the expense of it. That enterprise we shall certainly 
not attempt. There remains, therefore, the alternative: 
either to settle into an attitude of fixed hostility to a Power 
which will always exist side by side by us, or to place on 
Russia's action towards the Asiatic races the same favourable 
construction which we allow to our own, and to ask ourselves 
whether in Russia's conduct there is anything materially 
diflferent from what we too accept as necessary in similar 

The war of 1854 was a first step in what I considered 
then, and consider now, to have been the wrong course — a 
coiu-se leading direct, if persisted in, to most deplorable 
issues. That war had been made inevitable from the indig- 
nation of the Liberal party throughout Europe at Russia's 
interference in Hungary.* Professedly a war in defence of 
Turkey, it was fought really for European liberty. European 
liberty is no longer in danger, nor has the behaviour of Tur- 
key since the peace been of a kind to give her a claim on 
our interest for her own sake. The Ottoman Empire has 
for half a centmy existed upon suflferance. An independence 
accompanied with a right of interference by other nations 

Appendiv. 373 

with its internal administration has lost its real meaning, 
and the great Powers have been long agreed that the Porte 
cannot be left to govern its Christian subjects after its own 
pleasure. The question is merely in whom the right of 
supervision is to reside. Before the Crimean war they were 
under the sole protectorate of Bussia. The Treaty of Paris 
abolished an exclusive privilege which was considered dan- 
gerous, and substituted for it, by implication, a general 
European protectorate. It seemed likely to many of us that, 
while other objects of the war might have been secured, the 
ostensible occasion of it would be forgotten ; that the Chris- 
tians, having no longer Bussia to appeal to, would be worse 
treated than before ; and that after a very few years the 
problem of how to compel the Turk to respect his engage- 
ments would certainly return. Such anticipations, in the 
enthusiasm of the moment, were ridiculed as absurd and 
unpatriotic. The Turk himself was to rise out of the war 
regenerate, and a * new creature.' He was to be the advanced 
guard of enlightenment, the bulwark of Europe against bar- 
barism. There was no measure to the hopes in which 
English people indulged in those days of delight and excite- 
ment. But facts have gone their natural way. The Tiurk 
has gone back, not forward. He remains what he has always 
been, a blight upon every province on which he has set his 
heel. His Christian subjects have appealed once more for 
help; and the great Powers, England included, have admitted 
the justice of their complaints, and the necessity of a remedy. 
Unhappily England coidd not agree with the other Powers 
on the nature of the remedy required. Bussia, unable to 
trust further to promises so often made and so imiformly 
broken, has been obliged io take active measiu'es, and at 
once the Crimean ashes have again been blown into a flame ; 
there is a cry that Bussia has sinister aims of her own, that 
English interests are in danger, and that we must rush to 
the support of our ancient friend and ally. How we are 
decently to do it, under what plea, and for what purpose, 
after the part which we took at the Conference, is not ex- 

371 The Aiujlo-ltnsvian AUuiiwe. 

plained. Tim redt of Europe iti not alarmt^. The rt^ of 
Kurope iR dutisfied that the Turk must be coerced, and looki; 
on, if not pleased, yet at least indlfFerent. If we go into 
the atrug^e, we must go in without a single ally, and when 
we have succeeded in defeating Buseia, and re-establishing 
Turkey (there is another possibility, that we may not succeed, 
but this I will not contemplate), — as soon as we have suc- 
ceeded, what then ? After the censures to which we stand 
committed on Turkey's misconduct we cannot in decency hand 
hack Bulgaria to her without some check upon her tyranny. 
We shall be obliged to take the responsibiiity on ourselves, 
blngland will have to be sole protector of the Bulgarian 
Christians, and it is absolutely certain that they would then 
be wholly and entirely at the Turk's mercy. It is absolutely 
certain that we should be contracting obligations which we 
could not fidfil if we wished. We should demand a few fine 
promises from the Porte, which would be forgotten as soon as 
made. A British protectorate is too ridiculous to be thought 
of; and if the alternative be toplace Bulgaria under a govern- 
ment of its own^ (hat is precisely the thing which Russia is 
trying to do. To go to war with such a dilemma staring us 
in the face, and with no object which we can distinctly 
define, would be as absurd an enterprise as England was ever 
entangled in. Yet even after Lord Derby's seeming rew^- 
nition of the character of the situation, there is still room 
for misgiving. In constitutional countries politicians vill 
snatch at passing giist!< of popular excitement to win a 
momentary victory for themselves or their party. thir 
Premier, unless he has been misrepresented, has dreamt of 
closing his political career with a transformation scene — 
Europe in flames behind him, and himself posing like harle- 
quin before the fwtlights. Happily there is a power which 
is stronger than even Parliamentary majorities — in public 
opinion; and public opinion has, i trust, already decideii 
that English bayonets shall not be stained again in defeni.-e 
of Turkish tyranny. It will be well if we i-au proceed, whrti 
the present »-ar is over, to consider dispassionately the wider 

Appendix. 375 

problems, of which the Turkish difficulty is only a part ; and 
if the letters of M). K.' assist ever so little in making us 
acquainted with the Russian character, the writer will have 
reason to congratulate herself on so happy a result of her 

The Jewish QueatUyn. 

This hostility to Jews is not confined to Slavs. A dis- 
tinguished Englishman, who is very familiar with the move- 
ments of Cf erman thought, writes as follows to the * Non- 
conformist,' January 8, 1880: — 

There is an Eastern Question, a Nihilist Question, a 
Social Democratic Question, an<l so forth ; and there is also 
a Jewish Question, at any rate, so it is thought in Berlin, in 
Gennany. But what is meant by the * Jewish Question ? * 
Not a question of the emancipation of the Jews from the 
yoke of the Christian, not a question of giving the Jews 
equal rights with Christians, but, so, with just a spice of 
paradox, one might put it, a question of the emancipation 
of the Christians frora the yoke of the JeivSy and of the 
Christians keeping eqiud rights with the Jeivs. That the 
paradox is not all my own, the title of a pamphlet, which 
has gone through eleven editions in, I believe, about as 
many months, will tell you, it runs, * The Victory of Judaism 
over Germanism.' It is written hy a well-known German 
Publicist, W. Marr, an<l what does he say ? Jjct me quote 
a few passages : — 

*The 1800 years' war with Judaism approaches its end. 
I/Ct us confess it openly — Germanism has had its Sedan. 
We have lost our armies, and we are not allowed to Gam- 
bettize, we are not allowed to carry on a useless war with 
volunteers. We have been vanquished in an open struggle. 
.... We are no longer a match for this foreign race. 
Even freedom luis become a Jewish Tnonopoly. It is com- 
pelled to regulate itself by the social political dogmas of 
tlie Jews Aly voic« is that of one crying in the 

376 The Jewish Question. 

desert, and I have only laid down facts — irrefragable fa 
Let us accommodate ourselFCs to the inevitable, if we can 
alter it. That inevitable is Finis Oermanio} ! ' 

Let us hear another writer, a well-known Professor 
History, Henrich von Freitschke. In the November numl 
of the * Preussische Jahrbiicher ' he wrote as follows, 
summarise rather than quote literally : — 

* A great movement is going on in the depths of < 
nation. Among its symptoms none strikes one as so strai 
as the irritation against the Jews. A few months ago t 
old Hepp Hepp cry might be said to be raised by the Je 
against the Christians, instead of by the Christians agaii 
the Jews ; criticism of national faults of the Germa; 
French, and all other peoples were freely admitted into t 
daily papers ; but if any one ventured, in however mild 
tongue, to point out the faults of the Jews, at once he ^ 
branded by almost the entire press as a barbarian and ; 
ligious persecutor. The feeling referred to is the reas 
why the Breslau people rejected Lasker, having resolved 
elect no Jew as their representative. Up into the v< 
highest circles of culture, amongst men who are as ; 
removed as possible from every thought of ecclesiastical ini 
lerance or national pride, one hears it said with imparallel 
unanimity. The Jews are our misfortitne. There has alwj 
been a gulf between the Western and the Semitic chanict< 
There will always be Jews who are nothing but German-spei 
ing Orientals. There will always be, too, a specifically Jewi 
culture, and it has undoubted rights of its own. But t 
antagonism between West and East will be bearable if t 
Jews, who talk so much about toleration, will only learn 
be really tolerant, and to show some respect for the faii 
the customs, and the feelings of the German people, whi 
has given them the rights of men and citizens. But t 
complete lack of this respect in a part of the mercantile a 
literary Jewish community is the deepest reason for the p 
sionate embitterment of which I have spoken.' 

Let us hear yet another voice, that of the Coxirt Chj 

Appendix. 377 

lain, Stoeker, a thoroughly honest, well-meaning, and fiiirly 
representative man, now a Prussian Deputy for one of the 
districts of Berlin, than whom scarcely anyone has been^ 
more bitterly and either maliciously or ignorantly assailed 
by so-called Liberals all over the world during the last two 
years. He says : — 

* The Jewish question has long been a burning question : 
for the last few months the fire has burst into flames. It is 
not fed either by religious fanaticism or by political passion. 
Orthodox and Freethinkers, Conservatives and Liberals speak 
and write about it with the like passionateness ; they all 
treat the Jews not as the apple of religious discord and in- 
tolerance, but as a matter of social anxiety. " The social 
question," writes Glagau, " is the Jew question." We do not 
think that Germany is as near its end as W. Marr pro- 
phesies (in the pamphlet from which I have already quoted); 
* but symptoms of disease in our national body have im- 
questionably been laid bare, and social hostility is never 

absolutely groundless Modem Judaisvi is in very 

deed a great danger for the life of the German nation. 
.... Modem Judaism is certainly an irreligious force — 
a force which everywhere bitterly attacks Christianity, up- 
roots both the Christian faith and national sentiment, and 
in return offers nothing but the idolatrous reverence of 
itself." And as Auerbach says in his ' Waldfried,' " Educated* 
Jews are not so much Jews as non-Christians I " Hence 
their enthusiasm for creedless schools and the like.' 




ABRRDEEX, Lord, and Emperor 
Nicholas, 146; on Russian foreign 
policy, 306 

Afghanistan, ' outside sphere of Rus- 
sian interests,* 79, 345 ; ' England*8 
true policy in,' 337 ; Vitkevitch on, 
339 ; Russian pledges kept in, 341 ; 
Duke of Argyll on English policy 
in, 341 ; on English bad faith to, 

Afghan, the. Correspondence and 
General Kaufmann, 341 

Afghan War, the, Russian neutrality 
in, 79; brings British frontier to 
Rufwian, 279; increases Russia's 
power of offence, 279, 337; Mr. 
Gladstone on Russia and the, 285 ; 
Russian Mission toGabul justifiable, 
332; Russia and the, 332; Lord 
Beaconsficld on, 333 ; Duke of 
Argyll on, 334 ; proved impossi- 
bility of invading India, 335 ; cost 
of firsts 336 ; Colonel Osborne on 
difficulty of campaigning in, 336 ; 
not calculated to produce friend- 
ship, 337 ; Sir Cliarles Wingfleld, 
337 ; Cavagnari and Stoletoff, 339 

Aggression, Russian, 321 ; Russian 
and English since 1750, 322 ; Cob- 
den on. 323 

Ak.<iakoff, Mr.. President of Moncow 
Slavonic Committee, 20; not a 
Russian Mazzini, 20; Mr. Wal- 


laoe on, 24; <exiled,' 106; bank 
director, 107 

— speeches of, on the Servian war, 
24; on Russian reverses in 1877, 
52 ; on the Berlin Congress, 98 

— on work of Slavonic committees, 
25; Russian diplomacy, 25, 58, 103, 
104 ; the rootsof Russian power, 27 ; 
spread of Slavophilism, 27 ; General 
Tchemayeff,28; death of Nicholas 
Kirteff, 29 ; volunteers for Servia, 
30 ; money raised, S2 ; how spent, 
33 ; the Russiao debt to the Ser* 
vians, 34 ; the Russian soldier, 53 ; 
effect of reverses on the people, 
54 ; historic mission of Russia, 64, 
56, 57; to spread 'peace, liberty, 
and fraternal equality,' 57; com- 
plaints of higher classes, 55, 59 ; 'the 
sin of forsaking Russian nation- 
ality,* 55, 59; British interests, 
68; Austria-Hungary and the 
Slavs, 58; the limitation of war, 
69; the Berlin Congress, 98; 
Prince Tcherkassky, 98; Russia 
and the Western Powers, 99 ; 
Bulgaria 'sawn asunder alive,' 
100-103; Turkish garrisons in 
Balkans, 102; Slavonic develop- 
ment, 103; diplomatic Nihilists, 
104 ; the Constantinople Conference, 
104; England and her sepoys, 
105; Austria-Hungary, <ft heel of 




Acliilles,' 105 ; * the Balkan SUtes 
for Balkan peoples," 149 

Alexander I. and Turkey, 171 ; con- 
cludes treaty with England, 171 ; 
treats with Xapoleonat Tilsit, 171 ; 
wishes to re-establish Poland at 
Congress of Vienna, 204 ; on Con- 
stitutional Qovemment, 250 ; libe- 
rator of Europe, 302 ; iStein on, 
303; esteemed by Napoleon, 303; 
reactionary in later years, 304; 
liberality towards France, 304 ; too 
liberal for Mettemich, 318 

Alexander II., Emperor, * passionately 
desirous of peace,* 6 ; but, if neces- 
sary, will act alone, 6 ; Moscow 
speech, enthusiastic reception of, 
11; on Constantinople, 174; on 
'Russian designs on India,* 174; 
desires good understanding with 
England, 174 ; visited Siberia, 220 ; 
emancipator of serfs, liberator of 
snitljern Slavs, 230 ; Mr. Gladstone 
on, 230; conHdence in, 243, 2c5; 
attempt on the life of, 252, and the 
Tzarcwitch, 2(58 ; projifrcs-* under, 
275; M. de Laveleye on, 320 

Alexander Xevsky, Si., receives title 
of Grand-Duke from Tartars, 41 

America, civil war in United States of, 
Itussian and English 8ympathies,307 

Anarchy, in Poland, 200, 225; be- 
setting sin of Slavs, 225 ; in Russia, 
226 ; in Central Asia, banishe<l by 
Russians, 340 

Anglo- Russian Alliance, the, or entente 
rordiale. Lord Rochford on, in 
1772, 82; desired by Emperor 
Alexander II. in 1876, 174 ; how 
sought by Russia, 263, 288 ; Russians 
overtures rebuffed by England, 265 ; 
Russian noble on, 269 ; initiative 
must now be taken by England, 
269; the traditional policy of 
England, 272, 358 ; for Asia and 
the East, the watchword of ci\'ili- 
sation, 284; not indispensable to 
Rus.sia, 288; prevents German at- 


tack on France 1875, 291; Lord 
Beaoonsfield urges it in 1870, 364 ; 
civilising mission in Asia, 323 ; the 
traditional policy of Russia, 352; 
matrimonial ties past and present, 
352 ; Peter the Great, 353 ; Cathe- 
rine IL, 357; Alexander I.. 171, 
359; Alexander IL, 174; Ptoin, 
355 ; Potemkin, 355 ; Woronzoff, 
355 ; Gortschakoff , 355 ; Lord Robert 
Cecil, 295; Chatham, 355; Burke, 
355 ; Canning, 356 ; Fox, 356, 357 ; 
Pitt, 359; Palmerston, 358; Mr. 
Bright, 270 ; Sir Charles Trevelyan, 
270; Mr. W. H. Smith, 292; Mr. 
Lowther, 293; Lord Mayo, 330; 
Lord Napier and Ettrick, 363; 
Statesman, 182 ; in the seventeenth 
century, 354 ; in the eighteenth, 
355 ; in 1765, 359 ; 1812, 315, 359 
1827, 295, 315, 359; 1830, 300 
1833, 315, 359; 1840, 315, 359 
1850, 315; 1860, 315; 1867, 316 
1875, 291, 316, 364 ; and 1876, 281 
English people twice prevent armed 
rupture of, 356 ; basis of, in Elast of 
Euroi^e, 361 ; key to peace of Asia, 
363 ; evils caused by want of, 363, 
372; in the hands of the peoples, 
368 ; need for, 368 

Anglo-Turkisli Convention, the, 134 : 
Russian opinion on, 134 ; tlie yimi 
on, 135 ; violates Treaty of Paris 
135, 137, 138, 139; a sham, 136: 
Turkisli frontier undefended, 136 ; 
destroys European concert, 137; 
justifies Treaty of Kainardji, 137; 
gives Russia right to deal directly 
with Sultan, 140; and occupy 
Turkish territory, 140; justifies 
Russian principle in the Ciimean 
war, 311, 314; worse than Russian 
Mission to Cabul, 334 

Annand, James, on national mis- 
representations, 189 

Anne Ivanovna, Empress, 233, 246 
accepts Oligarchic Constitution 
23.% 246 ; restores autocracy, 246 




Annexations, Russian from Turkey, 
51, 74, 107, 313; of Armenia, 60; 
Finland, 193; the Crimea, 365; 
Poland, 200 ; Circassia, 208 ; Tur- 
kestan, 333, 347; of Russia and 
England since 1750, 322 ; Gobden 
on, 200, 323; Duke of Argyll on, 
321 ; Russian, benefit the annexed, 

Argyll, the Duke of, speech trans- 
lated into Russian, 39 ; supports 
cause of Christian East, 268; on 
secret societies, 19 ; the English 
entry of Dardanelles, 72; Berlin 
Congress, 106 ; Russia as liberator 
of the East, 236, 310; Treaty of 
Berlin, 310; Russian and English 
conquests in Asia, 324 ; Khiva, 330 ; 
Russian mission to Cabul, 334 ; 
English policy in Afghanistan, 341 ; 
English bad faith to Afghans, 360 

Aristocracy, Polish, ruin of Poland, 
225 ; character of, by Cobden, 199 ; 
by M. de Circourt, 205 ; denounced 
by liord Beaconsfield, 202 ; Rtussian, 
attempt to destroy autocracy, 233, 
246 ; present position of, in Russia, 

Armenia, annexation of, discussed, 

Armenian generals, 191, 235 

Ashantee War parallel to Khiva Ex- 
pedition, 349 

Asia, sceptre of, given to England 
and Russia, 323, 362 

Askold and Dir attack Byzantium, 

Assassination, attempt on the Em- 
peror, 262; no proof of 'ruthless 
despotism,* 254 ; political effect of, 
256; consequences if successful, 
259; English press on, 252. See 

Attempt, the, on the Emperor, 262 

Austria-Hungary, and the Slavs, 69, 
130, 132, 150, 152 ; Mr. Aksakof! on, 
69, 106 ; influence of, on San Stefano 
Treaty, 76 ; at Berlin Congress, 97, 


99, 103 ; Russia not hostile to, 129 ; 
Prince Gortschakoff on, 130; 'the 
sick woman of Europe,* 133; 'a 
carpet bagger,* Stillman, 151 ; 
occupies Bosnia at Russians sug- 
gestion, 130, 174 ; Talleyrand pro- 
poses eastward extension of, 132 ; 
must not annex the Balkan, 132 ; 
nor Constantinople, 167; probable 
future of, 132, 150, 152 ; Kossuth 
on annexations by, 150 ; M. de 
Laveleye on, 151, 290 ; Sir William 
Harcourt on, 1 54 ; admired in West, 
hated in East, 152; why? Chrza- 
nowski on cause of, 152; M^rim^, 
297 ; as a Dan ubian power interested 
in Black Sea and Constantinople, 
162 ; project for |)artition of Turkey, 
170; partitions Poland, 197; par- 
tition of, attempted by Poland, 
201 ; opposes national idea in Italy, 
166 ; and in the Balkan, 166 ; com- 
pensated for nothing, but not con- 
tent, 266 ; shares in Russia's evil- 
deeds, 312; Mr. Gladstone on, 154 ; 
saved by Russia, 1849, 297 ; in- 
gratitude of, 296 ; transformation 
of, 309 ; originally proposed repeal 
of Black Sea clause, 312 ; annexes 
Cracow, 312, 314 

Austro-German Alliance, the. Lord 
Salisbury on, 123 ; a menace to 
France and Italy, 131; Sir W. 
Harcourt on, 123, 154 ; Lave- 
leye on, 290 ; alleged cause of, 291 

Autocracy, the, in Russia, 223 ; great- 
ness of Russia due to, 223 ; never 
stronger than to-day, 223 ; De 
Tocqueville on, 224, 232 ; preserves 
national existence and secures pro- 
gress, 226 ; needed to defeat Tartars, 
226 ; and eject Turks from Europe, 
227 ; dictatorship en permanenrc^ 
227 ; civilising power, 228, 237 ; 
reforms of Peter the Great, 229 ; 
of Alexander II., 230 ; no desire to 
limit, 231 ; needs omniscience, 231, 
246 ; democratic origin of, 232 ; 




* the swoid of demooracy/ 235 ; 
destroyed by oligarcby, 233, 246 ; 
restored by people, 233, 246 ; popu- 
lar belief in, 233, 255 ; secures U 
rarriere ontriie aur tafent, 232 ; 
exists for the people, 235; Mr. 
C'arlylc on, 238 ; Ix>nl DeaoonsSeld 
on, 238, 251 ; only alternative to 
bnreaucrac}', 255 ; only check on 
dishonest officials, 255 ; strength- 
ened by attempted assaosination, 
256; not opposed to Constita- 
tionalism abroad, 305 ; often more 
liberal in its foreign policy than 
Constitutional States, 305-31 7 ; M. 
dc I^veleyc on, 318 
Azoff taken by Cossacks, 248 ; and 
refused by Zemskie Sobory, 249 

BAKEK, Ex - Colonel Valentine, 
fights against Russia, 75, 83 

Itakunin, the Nihilist leader, mani- 
festo of, 256 

Dalkan, the i^cninsula^ fur the Ilalkan 
peoples, Aksakoff, 149 ; takes the 
place of Italy, 117, 166 

I^alkans, the, to be garrisoned by 
Turks, Aksakoff on, 102 ; not garri- 
soned, 110; Sir W. Haroourt on, 

]«altic provinces, local franchises in, 

hariatinsky, Prince, 68 

Ilarbansm, * must recede before civili- 
sation,* Peel, 324; Anglo-Russian 
war against, 363 

P.arr>' Herbert, on Siberia, 213; on 
Russian loyalty, 233 

PxHtuum, Ru£>sia's right to, 51 ; ro- 
.scnted by English, 85 ; Jiord Bea- 
consfiehrs delight at cession of, 141 

Beaconsfield, the Earl of, on secret 
s)cicties, 20, 25; his Guildhall 
speeches, 95, 266, 268; abandons 
his policy at Berlin, 96 ; *an in- 
fallible Pope,* 96; sacrifices Bul- 
garia, 1 12, 203 ; is pleased at pacific 


•unender of Batomn, 141; foSkmt 
Outlereagh a precedent, 203 ; ac- 
coaed by the GoiM qt stock- jobbin<r, 
185; denounces the Poles, 201; 
eulogises the Circassians, 207; oa 
absolute monarchy, 238, 250: on 
representative government, 251 ; on 
the press and monarchy, 251 ; on 
Jewish revolutionists, 253 ; resuks 
of his policy in England, 265 ; Mr. 
Gladstone on, 367 ; popular with 
Russian Anglophobes, 279 ; weakens 
England, 279; on annexation of 
Cracow, 201, 814 ; on Russian Mis. 
sion to Cabal, 333; on Russia in 
Central Asia, 351; allied with 
Russia in 1875, 891, 364 ; leoom- 
mends Russian alliance in 1870^ 
364 ; fears excited by, in England, 
in 1877, 374 

Belgium, Russian policj in, 299 
condemned by Mr. Gladstone, 299 
vindicated by M. de La\-cle}*c, 31 S 
Russia supports independence of, 
300 ; protects Belgium from Napo- 
leon III., 301 ; M. de Lavelere on 
insurrection of 1830, 318 

Bentlnck, Lord George, approves an- 
nexation of Cracow, 314 

Berlin Congress the, On the Eve of, 
88 ; After the, 95 ; Mr. Aksakoff on, 
99 ; the Duke of Argyll on, 106 ; 
Mr. Gladstone on, 97 ; Bulgarians 
not heard at, 118 

Berlin Treaty, the Russian Govern- 
ment on, 107; doomed like that 
of Villafranca, 117; three-quarters 
of, taken from Treaty of San 
Stefano. 283; 23rd Article not 
executed, 119 

Bessarabia ceded to Russia, 49, 74, 

Beust, Count, and the Concordat, 
274; proposes tutelage of Turkey 
and repeal of Black Sea Treaty, 

Bismarck, Prince, his visit to Vienna, 
127, 291 ; M. dc Lavelcye's expla- 




nation of, 291 ; on difficulty of 
learning Russian, 209 ; on Russians 
non-entry into Constantinople, 242; 
on change of political opinions, 
273 ; offers Constantinople to Rus- 
sia, 291; approves Russians inter- 
vention in Hungary, 298 

Black Sea Treaty, the repeal of neu- 
. tralisation clauses, 1871, 312 ; pro- 
posed by Count Beust, 1867, 312 

Blunt^ Consul, proclamation to Hel- 
lenic insurgents, 8a 

Bosnia, occupation proposed by Russia, 
130, 174; gave cool welcome to 
Austrians, 152 

Boris Godounoff elected to throne by 
Zemskie Sobory, 232; reproves 
Queen Elizabeth for helping the 
Turks, 295 ; seeks alliance with 
other powers against Turks, 295, 

Bonrke, Hon. R., delusion of, about 
Mr. Gladstone's pamphlet, 39 

Brackenbury, Colonel, on Russian 
soldiers, 47 

Bright, Mr., gratefully remembered 
in Russia, 268, 311 ; pleads from 
friendship between Russia and 
England, 270 

Bruce, a Scotch general of Peter's, 

Bulgaria, effect of atrocities in, in 
Russia, 23, 29, 102 ; to be freed 
entirely, 48 ; will not be Russian, 
76; threatened by the Salisbury 
Circular, 76 ; not badly treated 
at San Stefano, 73, 76; *sawn 
asunder alive/ Mr. Aksakoff, 100; 
divided. 111 ; insurrection in south- 
western, 113; how divided at Ber- 
lin, 114 ; one-third re-enslaved with- 
out guarantees, 101, 115; will yet 
be united, 117; its limits, 116; 
defined at San Stefano, 155 ; di- 
vided against Russia's will, 155, 267, 
311; constitution of, not Russian, 
155, 240 ; suggested ports for, 159 ; 
in tenth century menaced Byian* 


tium, 169 ; cmshcd by Sviatoslaf, 
169; resurrection of, opposed by 
Lord Beaconsfield, 203 ; sacrificed 
by Lord Beaconsfield, 113, 267; 
union of, approved by English 
Liberals, 284 ; opposed by English 
Government, 311 

Bulgarian delegates, MM. Zancx)ff and 
Balabanoff, 65 

Bulgarians, and their Liberators, 
61 ; abused by Mr. Forbes, 63 ; 
degraded by Turkish oppression, 
65; prosperity of, 64; character 
of, MacGahan on, 64 ; Sir Henry 
Havelock, 66 ; Sir C^eorge Camp- 
bell, 156; General Tchemayeff, 
156 ; protest against Berlin Tr^ty, 
118; not heard at Congress, 118; 
demand execution of 23rd Article, 
119 ; difference between north and 
south, 155 ; English observers on, 
156 ; well treated by Russian sol- 
diers, 188 

Burke, Edmund, on Turkish alliance, 
272 ; on English in India, 851 

Byzantium, influence of, on Russia, 
167. See Constantinople. 

piABUL, Russian Mission to, jus- 

yj tified, 332; by Lord Beacons- 
field, 833 ; by Duke of Argyll, 334 ; 
a prison or grave to Europeans, 
340 ; Colonel Stoletoff and Major 
Cavagnari at, 340 ; and Candahar as 
bulwarks to India, Yitkevitoh, 339 

Campbell, Sir George, on Russians 
and Bulgarians, 156 ; on Kiepert's 
map, note to, 120 

Canning, George, on English neu- 
trality, 77 ; coerced Turks, 78 ; on 
Russia's defeat of Napoleon, 803; 
opposed by George IV., 318 ; allied 
with Russia, 859 

Capital punishment in England and 
Russia, 184 

Carlyle, Thomas, on absolnte govtra- 




meat, 238 ; on prestige, 264 ; Biu- 
sians grateful to^ 268; on Boasia 
and Bussophobia, 293 

Castlereagh, Lord, o^^ioees Polish 
independence at Vienna, 204 

Cat, Army, the, * pillar of British 
Constitution,' 184 

Catherine L, 234 

Catherine U., project about Constanti- 
nople, 170 ; Alexander IL on, 174 ; 
on mercy and justice, 213 ; ' sove- 
reign exists for the people,* 235 ; 
summons representative assembly, 
248 ; describes it to Voltaire, 249; 
on Fox, 357 

Cavagnari, Major, murdered at Cabnl, 

Centralisation, democratic tendency 
towards, De Tocqneville, 232 ; M. 
Thiers on, 237 ; necessary to civilise 
Kussia, 237 

Chatham, Lord, 'altogether a Bus- 
sian,* 355 ; refuses Russian alliance 
in East, 358 

Chesson, F. W., on slave trade in 
Turkey, 350 

Chinese less suspicious than English, 
186; English opium trade with, 
189; tactic-5 imitated by Lord 
lleaconsfield, lU 

Chreptovitch, C'ount, il58 

Chrzanowski, General, on Austrian 
and Russian rule, 152 

Circassians eulogi sell by Lord Beacons- 
field, 207 ; true cliaracter of, 208 ; 
Russian conquest of, 208 

Circourt, M. de, on Finland, 192 ; 
Poland, iy3, 205 ; Polish mendacity, 

Civilisation, the growth of cities, 
228 ; in Russia, from above, 228 ; 
mast conquer barbarism, 324 ; of 
Asia, the mission of Russia and 
England, 323, 362. 372 

Clarendon, Lord, work of, at Paris 
undone hy Lonl Rcaconsfield, 137 : 
on French and Riissian intervention 
in Italy, 308 


Cobden, Bichard, on Poland, 199; 
Boflsian annexations, 900; British 
oonqnests, 323 

Commune snppreased more cruelly 
than Nihilism, 257 

Concert of Enrope. See European 

Conoessions, Bossian, to England, 73, 
243, 264 ; denounced by Mr. Akss- 
koff, 105 

Concordat, Coont Beast and the, 274 

Congress, On the Eve of the, 88; 
After the, 95. See Beriin. 

Congreoses, Berlin, 95, 99, 107 ; Paris, 
137; Vienna, 204; Laybach, 313; 
Verona, 313 

Conservati\-es, English, fear Bussia, 
181 ; formerly allied with Bussia, 
296; support Bussia in reaction, 
296, 313. See Beaconsfield, and 

Conservatism, Bussian, 229 

Constantine, * Constitution' mistaken 
for wife of, 230 

Constantine, Grand-Duke, his Polish 
mission of reconciliation, 191, 20^ 

Constantinople, in the Past, more 
important than to>day, 160; a 
great commercial emporium, 161 ; 
to Russia, as Bome is to France, 
166 ; five times attacked by Bussia, 
167; seised by Crusaders, 168; 
Russian attacks on, 167 ; of IScan- 
dinavian origin, 168 ; by Askold 
and Dir, 168 ; Oleg, 169 ; Igor, 169; 
Sviatoslaf, 169; Yaroslaf, 169; 
designs of Catherine XL, 170, 174; 
never to be under same sceptre as 
Moscow, 171 ; the Tilsit interview 
on, 171 ; not entere<l by Russia in 
1829, 172, 174 ; occupied in 1833, 
172 ; Crimean war not aimed at, 

— and the War, Russians desire to 
make pt»ace in, not to annex, 49, 
241 ; never entered by Russia, 163 : 
English scare about, 164 ; in- 
dignation at non-entn* of army 




into, 73, 241; General Grant on, 
241 ; Bismarck on, 242 

— the Fntore ot^ * last word of Bastem 
Question,' 3, 160; no longer a 
talisman of Empire, 160; com- 
mercial decay of, 161 ; importance 
of, to Eozine States, 162 ; political 
importance of, to Bnssia, 162 ; may 
be left to Turks '¥rith a cabbage 
garden,* 163 ; cannot pass to Ans- 
tria, 165, 167; not desired by 
Bossia, 174, 176; Alexander IL 
on, 174 ; Prince Gtortschakoff on, 
176; most belong' to no Great 
Power, 166, 175; Mr. Gladstone 
on, 175; Foad Pasha, 176; would 
be Achilles* heel of Bussia, 176; 
Emperor Nicholas on, 176 ; Mr. 
Ck>wen, 176; future discussed, 
177 ; free city or capital of Asia 
Minor, 177; said to be offered to 
Bussia by Bismarck^ 1875, 291 

Constitution, the Bulgarian, 155, 240 

^~ of England a plutoora^^, 280 

Constitutional States sometimes sup- 
port despotism abroad, 305 ; France 
in Spain, 306 ; England in Turkey, 

Constitutionaliim in Bussia, obstacles 
to, L(»d Beaconsfield, 223 ; Polish 
anarchy, 238 ; Nihilism, 234 ; popu- 
lar ignorance, 228, 255 

•» comparative failure of, in Italy, 
244 ; Duke of Somerset on, 238 ; 
Lord Beaconsfield on, 257 ; English 
■ealots of, inconsistent, 240; re- 
presentative assemblies in Bussia, 
231, 244, 247, 248; Bussian Con- 
stitutionalists, 250 ; Alexander L on, 
250. In Bussia, see Zemskie Sobory . 

Convict system, Bussian, milder than 
English, 213 

Corporal punishment in Bussia and 
England, 184 

Cossacks, enthusiasm for late war, 17 ; 
Sir H. Havelock on, 188; ciq[>ture 
Azoff, 247 ; ravage Bussia in seven- 
teenth century, 227 


C9up d'JStat, severity after, 258; 
Lord Palmerston condones, Nicholas 
condemns, 306 

Courtney, Mr. Leonard, on English 
Liberals and the war, 113; on 
Liberal policy in the East, 283 

Cowen, Mr. Joseph, ridicules the 
dread of Bussian aggression, 176 

Cox, Sir George, suggests English ad- 
dress to Emperor of Bussia, 49 

Craoow, annexation of, by Austria, 
Lord Beaconsfield on, 200, 314; 
Lord George Bentinck on, 314 

Crete, insurrection in, supported b 
Bussian people, 316; opposed b 
England, 31 6^ 

Crimean war, Mr. Aksakoff on, 27 ; no 
designed against Constantinople, 
173 ; Bussia*s principle in, justified 
by Anglo- Turkish Convention, 311, 

Criminal convictions in Bussia and 
EngUnd, 216 

Cross and Crescent, 41 

Crusades, Norseman element in, 168 ; 
Constantinople captured during, 168 

Cyprus concession, the, 138 ; Mr. 
Gladstone on, 138 ; value as prece- 
dent to Bussia, 140; possible ces- 
sion to Greece, 159 ; seized without 
Parliamentary sanction, 248 

jyAILT NEWS, publishes letters 

-^^ from Moscow, 1876 9, 186; 
accuses Bussia of bad faith in Af- 
ghanistan, 342 

Danube, Confederation of the, pro- 
bable future for Austria, 132, 152 ; 
Austria's interest in the, 162 ; Bos- 
phorus, real mouth of the, 162 

Dardanelles forced by English fleets 

Decembrists, the character of, 250 

*Dedan4t noui $omines,' 163 

Democracy, supports autocracy in 
Bussia, 232, 246 ; Prince Mestdier- 
sky on, 232; centralising instinct 
of. 232 

C C 

Doby, Eul of, kitd the Pntoool. tt ; 

on last woid of Uia bsMni Qmi- 

tton, 160; mj%fmie»i»thmgimJMA 

of BritUi intamU, 3Tfi 
DespotUm. Bee AnUienoT. 
Diebitch, (tanenl, 39« 
Diplonuttltfa, Stockmar'a i^lnion ol, 

18 ; Ht. AkMkoR cm, lOS, 104 
Dii aiid Aakold atlaok OonaUoUDop^ 

Dolgonnikj. Prince Jaoob, mtid the 

EA3TSBN Qoeation, Uat and fint 
word ot, 3, 1 60 i f QtDM of, 193 ; 
difficnlttM of, not Id Tnrkejr, bnt 
Id Evopa, 106; not local, bat 
Imperial, 1G6; soggeatod nlattons 
o^ 168, 1S9. 177 
Education, clSKJcal, in Bnaaia, 1>6 
Eg37t and English neatralitj, S8; 

and AuMro-German alliance, 131 
Eliiabeth, Queen. ref|r> of, paralle! to 
Russia of to-day, 16; reproved bj 
Boris Qodounoff for hriping Turks, 
296 ; Ivan IV,, and nMiriage ne^co- 

'Blizabdhan Policy,' IB 

Empcmr of Ra-oia. Srr> AlcxatidoT 
IL, and Autocracy , 

EnKland, EaWcm policy of, In 1876, 
maintains itatiu jko, 6 ; Hi. Aksa- 
koff on, US ; in 18TT a (ham nea- 
trality, 77 i in 187evi"l«tc8treatie^ 
74, 197, 139 ; conspires with Austria 
to re-ensUvc UulBaria, 97, 101. 113, 
116; prevents annexation to Greece, 
7fi-7, 266 ; menaoes Rossia, 91 ; 
rexnllN of, in RiLVta. 364 ; in Eng- 
land, 2S& : Mr. Gladstone on, S67 : 
oppogeil to fri-edom, 310 

- Foreign policy of, Ipw libpral than 
Rosaia's, 2DI ; in Ihe East, 310 ; in 
Iinly, :)07 ; in Ao-slria. Hm -. in Ger- 
manr. 30S : in Greece, 266, ^9^ 31 1, 

814, SIS ; in Bolgmri*, 311 ; In Roa- 
mania, 311 ; in Belgitoa, M. de 
Lkreleye on, 318 
— and BohU. See Biuma and Kng- 
laod and A nyl o- Rnmrian AUiaiioe. 

73 1 oppose* eeadoi 

impotta Sepoji to Malta, SI, lOS ; 

oooopaa Cjpn», 138 ; obJeeU to 


aop\», S13j medltat 
Bona in TnrkeaUn, 336 

— Traditional Policy ot S3T 
Kngliah aggreflnon, Mr. Farrar oa, 

8» : Hr. Qladrtone, 3SS ; Oobden, 
813; Duke of Argyll, 384 

— ConititDtion, a platooaqy, 280: 
eonvict ayateni, banher than Bds- 
sia'^ 91S ; Historians on Boaii'i 
aide, 393 ; ig^ionuiae of Frcodi 
langnage, 163 ; Kingi, an Bngliili 
opinion of, 829 ; people twioe pee- 

wit h B 

a. 366; 

hardly exceed one Bnaeian amy 
oorpa, 91 ; ael&shnese, 279 ; lolun- 
teers in Tnikej differ from Rimiaii, 
7i ; number of. S3 

— Neatrality, 77; Canning on, 77; 
oontnuted with Banian, 79 ; eoo- 
ditions of, 83 ; in American war, B3 ; 
tooiteen English ofBcers in Torkish 
gendarmerie, 83; in Qree«a, SS; 
in the Bhodope, 86 ; in i-^^-ttan, S5 

— parties, Bnsaia and, 277. See Con- 
■erratiTca and Liberals. 

— Prejudices, Some, 181; Fatho 
Coleridge on, 183; foreign orifin 
of, 183; due to ignorance, tSt; 
illoatrationi of, 183; the Knout, 
184 ; Buwian agenia, 187 ; adminit- 
tralion, 190 : Poland, lui ; Kinlaod, 

Europe, inimical t(v Slavs, 76 
European concert broken hy Kngland, 
140, 265; WelUngton, Duke of, 
desired, 144 ; foreshadowed by 
Boris GodounolT, 295; Russia de- 
sires, 144, 359 




Bxecations in England* private, \M ; 

nomber of, 258 
Bxile, of Mr. AksakofE, 106 ; number 

sent to, 215. See Siberia 

FABBEB, lir. T. H., on Bnglish 
■ggresBion, 821 
Fenians on English prisons^ 216 
Finland, better governed bj Btmia 
than Sweden, 198; Home Bnle 
in, 192 ; contrast to Poland, 193 \ 
loyalty of, 194 
Flogging in English army, 184 
Forbes, Mr., oorrespondenee of,read in 
Russia, 64, 68 ; on War Ck>rrespon- 
dents, 61 ; Russians, Turks and 
Bnlgarians, 61 ; Russian corruption, 


Foriter, Mr. on alliances, 129; his 
amendment withdrawn, 281; on 
Khiva, 827 

Fox, Charles James, on Anglo^Bus- 
sian Alliance, 357; Catherine II. 
on, 357 

France, Russia has no hostility to, 
129; Austro-Gterman alliance a 
menace to, 131 ; and Rome, 166 ; 
centralisation in, 287 ; Intervention 
of, in Spain, 306 ; and Alexander I^ 
804 ; protected by Russia and Eng- 
land, 1875, 291 ; allied with Russia 
in freeing Italy, 807; Revolution 
of 1830 in, and Russia, 806 ; sup- 
ported Belgian revolution, 319 

Frederick the Great and his cudgel, 

Freeman, Mr. E. A., collects money for 
Slav refugees, 22 ; Russia grateful 
to, 268 ; protests against re-enslave- 
ment of Macedonia, 117 

French language, English ignorance 
of, 163 

Friends or Foes ? 263 

Froude, Mr. J. A., on Ireland, 199; 
on Anglo- Russian alliance, 362, 
364 ; preface to 'Is Russia Wrong/ 


Fuad P&sha on Russia and Constan- 
tinople, 176 

G ALICIA, Polish population of^ 206 ; 
Massacre in, 202 

George IV. opposed Canning*8 poUcy 
in Spain, 813 

Germany, at last discovered by Lord 
Salisbury, 127 ; unity of^ promoted 
by Russia, 127, 309 ; effect of union 
of| on balance of power, 128, 275, 
309; Russian alllanoe with, 129, 309 ; 
alleged cause of hostility of, to 
Rus^ 291 ; Russian politgr in, in 
1819, 304; in 1870, telegram of 
Emperor William, 309. See Bis- 

Girardin, M. Emile de, on Poland, 191 ; 
disonssion on Constantinople at 
house of^ 242 

Gladstone, Mr., his pamphlet in 
Russia, 39 ; on the Southern Slavs, 
48; on Berlin Congress, 97; has 
not denounced re-enslavement of 
S. W. Bulgaria, 101 ; on Anglo- 
Turkish Convention, 138, 189; 
Heirs of the Sick Man, 153 ; Russia 
and Constantinople, 175 ; Alexander 
n., 230; Historians, 255; results 
of English policy in Eait, 267; 
the Liberals and the East, 277 ; his 
resolutions apparently withdrawn, 
281 ; appeared to advocate war with 
Russia about Afghanistan, 285; 
writes < Friends or Foes of Russia 7 * 
285 ; how regarded in Russia, 285 ; 
appears to repudiate Russia's friend- 
^p, 287; on Servian v<4anteert, 
285 ; * Friendship for every Country,* 
287; on Russia's foreign policy, 
296; repfied to, 290; his indict- 
ment of Austria, 154; of Russia, 
296; his speech on the Padfico 
case, 314 ; on Russians in Central 
Asia, 323 ; on English jealousy of 
Russia, 323 ; accused of being a 
Russian agent, 358 ; resembles Fox, 

C 2 



Otedttone, Mt,< A reid7 to, on Biu^'« 

Foreign taWej,' S»0 
Goethe on the be«t tana of Oorem- 

Gkitdon, * Sootcb genenl of PotAr's, 


GoTticbakoff, Prince, on BdmIbii 
policy Id Torkej, 1876, 4 ; alleged 
iDt«rTie«with AMI Bepoitei, 1S8; 
■qitig of, kboDt Aostii*, ISO; pro- 
teeted in 18TT againit divirion of 
Bolgwia, I6S ; on Conttantinople, 
ITS ; in favoor of Anglo-BoMiaii 

Onuit,0eii.,on EdmIhi noD-vntry Into 
Conat«atitK>ple, 211 

Oranville, Earl, on benerolent nen- 
tnUty, 86 

QreeOBi'ivopOMdoessionato bf Boiria, 
76; Engllih iDtorrention In, 8S; 
mggcsted addiliona to, 169; oan- 
Dot liave Constantinople, ITT ; be- 
Irajed bj Eng-laod, 2li6; Englidh 
LibeiaU would help, 383; freed 
more bj Bonia than England, 29S ; 
RoBSian and Engliah policy in, 290, 
311,31*, 31fi 

Greek project, tbe, of 1T8T, 170 

HABCODBT Sir W. on the Berlin 
treaty, ] 10 ; Heirs of Sick Han, 
164 ; Downfall of Tnrkej, 146 ; on 
the Saliabuiy BTangel, 123 

Harold's danghter Qjda marries Vlad- 
imir Honomachos, 362 

Havelock, Sir Henry, on Biilg«riaD*, 
66 ; on Bossian soldiers, 187 

Henegorina, rUing in, not originated 
by Bossia, 22 

Henid Angel, Lord Saltsbmjr as, 123 

Hiatoriant, English on Bnssian tide, 

Holland, shonld not have been severed 
from Belgiiun, 31S 

HollaDd, Lord regtele Rossia did not 
take Constantinople, 172 

Hungary, Bossian intervention ia, 296 ; 
caiiio»of, 2!>7: apprnvGd of by Kng- 

lidi OonaerTatiTea, S97 ; Mr. Obd- 
•tone on, 297 ; hamBnitj of >*"^«" 
army in, 297 ; Lord Beaeonrfeli 

IQOB attMks ConatantiDaple, 169 
Indemnity or war fine leried oe 

India, impairs Kngland's strei^h, 
OS; not enthnnastieally loyal, 9t; 
impossibility of Bnaaian liiTasion iA 
asserted by Alex»nder IL, 174; 
proved by Afghan war, 336 ; dan* 
ger to from Bnaaia imaginary, IBl ; 
splendonr of Empire in, 161 ; Bos- 
^*n advaooe lowaids, 334 ; s oon- 
qaered Afghanistan no bolwaik U, 
S39; richer than Tnikeatan, 348; 
English promises broken in «an- 
quest of, 361 

Infallibility, Decree of, leads to aboli- 
tion of Concordat in Austria-HoD- 
gary, 274 

htertuttioiuile, f, Bupporta Kihilist^ 

Ionian Islands occnpied to obligs 
Bnnia, 366 

Ireland, England's Poland, 197 ; Con- 
stitntionij safeguards aometirDes 
suspended in, 266; Mr. Fronde os 
English in, 199 

Italy, England sympathised with, 117: 
wasas Bulgaria 18,117,166; libera- 
tion partly due to Bnssia, 307; 
Aostro-Qerman allianoe a menace 
to, 131 ; const itntionai ^vemmeat 
not working well in, 244 

Ivan ni,, broke power of Tartars. 41 

Ivan IV., consulted Zemakie Soboiy 
about Polish War, 231 ; marriage 
negotiations of, 362 

JEWS support Nihilista, 263 ; hc«tile 
to Christians, 2S3 ; Lord Beaoons- 
lield on, as revolutioniita, 253 ; Dr. 
Sandwitb on, 263 
Jewish Question, the, 375 




JoliiiHtone, Mr. Bailer, at Constanti- 
nople, 86; on Poland, 203; on 
Russian progress, 276 

KAIENARDJI, treaty of justified 
by Anglo-Turkish Convention, 

Kars, taken thrice by Russia, 60 ; dom- 
inates Asia Minor, 136 

Ecatkoff, Mr., and the Moioow Oazette, 
125; and Poland, 125 ; and classical 
education, 126; and the Slavonic 
cause, 126 ; family of, 125 

Kaufmann, Gen., in Turkestan, 68; 
acts with good &dth in Afghanistan, 
341 ; his correspondence with Shere 
Ali, 342 ; approved by Lord Mayo, 
only condemned by Lord Lytton, 

Khiva, the truth about, 325; Sir H. 
Rawlinson on eanu belU with, 326 ; 
Mr. Forster on, 327 ; the Statesman, 
328; Sir Charles Trevelyan, 329; 
Duke of Argyll, 330 ; Count Schou- 
valoff^s assurance about, 329 

Kiepert, M., the Greographer, 120; 
Sir George Campbell on the Bul- 
garia of, note to map, 120 

Kinglake, Mr. A. W., describes death of 
Nich. Kir^eff, 35-8 ; on Crimean war, 
173 ; on the victims of the Coup d* 
ixat, 258 ; on Russia and the balance 
of power, 302 ; on Emperor Nicho- 
lases friendship for England, 354 

Kir^ff, Nicholas, first Russian volun- 
teer killed in Servia, 29 ; effect of 
his death in Russia, Mr. Aksakoff on, 
29; death at Zaitschar described, 
36 ; character of. Dr. Overbeck on, 
38; and the Cretan insurrection, 

Klaczko, M., on Emperor Nicholas, 
298 ; on the Black Sea Treaty, 312 

Knout, the, introduced into Russia, 
1474, 41 ; abolished 1862, 184 

Kossuth. Loui% on benevolent neu- 
trality, 86; on Austrian annexa- 
tions, 150 

Kotzebue, County 67 
Koznakoff, Gen., Governor-General of 
Siberia, 213 

LAST Words, Some, 367 
Laveleye, M. Bmile dc; on Russian 
foreign policy, 317 ; on Austrians in 
the Balkan Peninsula, 151 ; explains 
cause of Bismarck's visit to Vienna, 
291 ; on Belgium and Holland, 317 ; 
thinks Russia does not want a 
Parliament, 318, but a democratic 
Slavonic Emperor, 318; on the 
liberal policy of Alexander I., 318 
Layard, Sir Austin, appointment of, 
79 ; opposes treaty of San Stefano, 86 
Laybach, Congress of, 313 
Lef ort. Admiral, 235 
Legislative Commission, great, at 

Moscow, 248 
Leontieff, Mr., 125 
Leopold, King, on Russian protection 

of Belgium, 301 
Liberals, English, Mr. Gladstone on 
Eastern policy of, 277 ; why dis- 
trusted in Russia, 284 ; will support 
Berlin Treaty, 282 ; Mr. Courtney 
on, 283 ; What will be their policy 7 
284 ; more in accord ¥rith Russian 
than * English foreign policy, 294 ; 
standing motto of * Friendship with 
every country,* Mr. Gladstone, 287 
Liberals, Russian, accused of Nihilism, 

Liddon, Canon, 268 
Lithuania, Russo-Polish question in, 

Loftus, Lord Augustus, on Russian en- 
thusiasm in 1876, 16 ; reports inter- 
view with Emperor, 174, 268; with 
Russian nobleman, 269 
Lomonossoff, a peasant, 235 
Lowell, J. R.,on English neutrality, 83 
Lowther, Mr. James, on Anglo- Russian 

alliance, 293 
Lytton, Lord, objects to the Kauf- 
mann Correspondence, 313; and 
makes war on Afghanistan, 346 




MACEDONIA, re-enslayed, 114; 
atrocities oontlnoing in, 116, 119 ; 

insurrection in, 112 ; protest from, 

119 ; Mr. Freeman on, 117 
MacGahan, Mr^ letters read in Rnssia, 

64; on Bolgarians, 64-6; reoom- 

mends Snos as port for Biilgariay 

HaodiiayeUi on Diotat^nrship, 297 
KaoOoll, Bev, Maloolm, oo Boasia and 

Afghanistan, 944 
MMchetter BtBomUftstf Oorreqwndent 

of, on Poland, 198 
Martens, Professor, on Afghan war, 

Martin, Mr. Theodore, <E(istorian in 

Waiting ' dted, 308 
Marvin, Mr., ' The indiscreet oopyist^' 

Mayo, Lord, on the common mission of 

England and Bnada in Asia, 330 ; 

on the Kanfmann Oorre^jondenoe, 

Mehemet All, England and Bnada 

allied against, 315 
Menshikoff began life as a pastry* 

cook, 235 
M^rim^ M., on Anstrians and Bns- 

sians in Hungary, 297 
Merv, the last slave market in Asia, 

328 ; England and Bnssia may meet 

as friends at, .S31 ; England cannot 

send a large army to, 336 
Blezentzoff, Gen., murder of, 257 
Michael of Twer, St., martyred by 

Tartars, 49 
Minine, the butcher, 247 
Minorca, proposed cession to Bossia of, 

Minsk, the fabled outrage on nuns of, 

Mirsky, the assassin, 259 
Mohammedans in Russia, well treated, 

Monarchy, Lord Beaconsfield on, 238, 

251. See Autocracy. 
Monomachufi defeats Yaroslaf the 

Great, 169 

Monomachns, Vladimir, maniea Gjd% 
Harold*8 dao^ter, 369 

Montenegro, Gen. Tdiemayeff pro- 
posed to go to, 22, 28 ; money sent 
to» 83: not badlj tzeated at 8n 
Stefano, 73, 76 

Moscow, heart of Bossia, IS; diffen 
from St. FetOTsbnrg, 18 ; delasUtte 
Protocol, 13; bomt twioe bj Tu 
tars, 41 ; attacked by Poles, 199 
925, 927, 947; Zemskie Soboiy 
meet at, 946, 947; Great Le^ 
lative Oommisaion at, 248; bvrat 
as a sacrifice to European freedon, 

Mueaw OasstUt beat exponent of 
Bussian views, 125 

Moacow Slavophils in 1848» 297 

MOnich, Gen., 235 

Murray, Mr^ English Ambassador at 
Constantinople, 1772, 80 

NAFIEB, Lord, and Ettrick, on An- 
glo- Bussian Alliance, 363 

Napier, Lord, of Magdala, on Eng- 
land's dangers in India, 92; ap- 
proves of the Kaufmaim Oorre- 
spondenoe, 343 

Ni4)le8, Bussia interferes against Gsr- 
bonari of, 304, 313 

Napoleon I. at Tilsit, 171 ; overthrown 
by Bussia, 303 ; tiie invasion of Eng- 
land by, frustrated by Boasia, 301 

Napoleon III, severity after Coup d> 
£tat^ 258 ; meditates annexation of 
Belgium, 301 ; frustrated by Bossia, 
301 ; Emperor Nicholas and, 306 

Navarino, Battle of, 295 ; jubilee in 
Bussia, 359 

Nesselrode, Count, on Bussian pob^ 
in Turkey, 146; ConstAntinoi^ 
165; Pm^oo case, 314 

Neutrality, Earl Granville and Kos- 
suth on benevolent, 86; English in 
Busso-Turkish war, 77; in 17i2, 
Turkophil ambassador reproved for 
breach of ,81 . See English Neutrality. 




HeweagtU Ckromcla, article on Si- 
beria and Oaptain Wiggins, 207 

Newspapers read in every Tillage in 
Bnssia, 54; correspondents of, in 
English and Russian wars, 61 ; on 
character of Bossian soldiers, 188 ; 
English and ' naui 9omme$ dedatu ' 
163; on attempt on the Emperor; 
252; on Khiva, 328; Nihilist, how 
published. 254 

Nicholas, Emperor, on the Sick Man, 
144 ; Ck>nverBations with Sir H. 
Seymour, 143, 162, 176, 298; and 
Lord Aberdeen, 146 ; on the Turk as 
Gatekeeper of the Boephoms, 162 ; 
on Constantinople, 176; character 
of, 298 ; Mr. Klaczko on, 298 ; hor- 
ror of Revolution, 299 ; in Belgrium, 
299; in Hungary, 297; and the 
Coup d'Etat, 306; desired peace 
with England, 354 

Nihilism, Russian Liberals accused of, 

Nihilists attempt life of Emperor, 253; 
supported by Jews, thelnttTHoHonalf 
and some Foreign Embassies, 254 ; 
Anarchists and Communards, 257 » 
not Constitutionalists or Panslavists, 
257; their no-faith, 256; Baku- 
min*8 programme, 256 ; treated with 
leniency, 257 ; which they reward 
by muider, 259 ; danger of popular 
massacre of, 259 

Nobility in Bussia, privileges almost 
gone, 232 

Nordenskjold's, Professor, Walrus Hun- 
ter in Siberia, 220 

North, Lord, observes a more real neu- 
trality than Lord Beaconsfield, 81 

Northbrook, Lord, on the Elaufmann 
Correspondence with Shere Ali, 343 

Northern Echo, Bussian correspond- 
ence in, 7, 9 

LEG attacks Constantinople, 168 

Opium Trade, tlie, Bussian view 
of, 189 


Osborne, Col. on campaigning in 
Afghanistan, 387 

Ottoman Empire, and the Triple 
Alliance, 3; destroyed by Lord 
Beaoonsfield's policy, 6; death- 
blow dealt by the Henegovinese, 
22; death-warrant signed by 
Timour the Tartar, 44 : present 
condition of, 143 ; Austrian preten- 
sions to succeed to, 150: the rigfft- 
f ul heirs of, 159 ; altered position of, 
275; exists, but does not answer 
the end of its being, 276; pro- 
jects of partition of, Talleyrand, 
132 ; Greek project, 170; Alexander 
L, 171 : Napoleon 1., 172 

Overbeck, Dr. J. J., on Nicholas 
Kir^ff, 38 

Oxenstieme and Bulstrode White- 
locke, 263 

PCIFICO ease, the, England, 
Bussia and Greece, 314 

Paimerston, Lord, on Turkey, 142 ; on 
Bussian occupation of Constantino- 
ple, 173 ; on Padfico case, 314 ; on 
England and Bussia, 358 

Panslavism, see Slavophils and Slav- 
onic Societies 

Panin, M., on Anglo- Bussian Alliance, 

Paris, Treaty of, torn up by Berlin 
Congress, 109 ; broken by Anglo- 
Turkish Convention, 138; Black 
Sea Clauses, repeal of proposed by 
Austria, 312 - 

Parliament, English, *a chatting 
club,* 244 ; ' Bussia does not need a,' 
M. de Laveleye, 318. In Bussia, 
see Zemskie Sobory and Consti- 

Party Government, effect on foreign 
states, 294 

Partitions. See Austria, Ottoman Em- 
pire, and Poland. 

Peel, Sir Bobert^ and Emperor Nicho- 
las, 146; on civilisation and bar* 
barism in Asia, 324 




Peter tlie Great, builds St. Peter burg, 
10, 161 ; and Prince Jacob Dolgou- 
rooki, 195 ; Cobden on, 229 ; Con- 
servative objections to, 229; the 
Reforming Tzar, 230; his work, 230 ; 
Fdnshkin on, 230 ; sparioos will of, 

Petersburg, St., cosmopolitan, 10 ; op- 
posed to the war, 1 1 ; enthusiasm 
for Servia at, 16 ; subscriptions to 
Slavonic cause at, 32 

Pitt, William, proposes war vote 
against Russia, 1791, 359 ; concludes 
Russian alliance, 1795, 359 

Plevna, Before the Fall of, 45 ; rever- 
ses before, how received in Russia, 
54 ; Mr. Forbes' account of, circula- 
ted in Russia, 63 ; After, 70 

Pintoorapy, English Constitution a, 

Pojarsky, Prince, 247 

Poland and Circassia, 196 
— anarchic and aristocratic, 199, 
225 ; and Diplomacy, M. de Girar- 
din on, 191 ; effect of intervention 
in, 125 ; at Congress of Vienna, 
Lord Castlereagh opposes resur- 
rection of, 204 ; Cobden on. 199; 
Lord Beaeonsfield on, 201 ; Mr. 
Butler Johnstone, 203 ; indepen- 
dence of, what it means, Cobden, 
200; M. de Ciroourt, 206; in- 
surrections in, caused by aristo- 
cracy, Lord Beaconsfield, 201 ; 
origin of insurrection of 1863, 190, 
203, 205 ; question in dispute not 
Polish but Lithuanian, 191, 203, 

— Partition of, the English Foreign 
Secretary on, 1772, 81 ; the English 
Parliament and, 200; Lord Bea- 
consfield on, 201 ; Austria's share in, 
197; not without provocation, 199, 
201,206, 225,227, 231, 247 ; Cobden 
on, 199 ; increases happiness of 
Poles, 198, 199, 202, 206, 206 

proposed re-establish men t of, 

1814-5,203; bpposcd by England, 


204 ; under the Treaty of Viemia, 
204; constitution granted, 249; 
Home Rule offered, 1863, 191, 902 : 
refused, 203; demands Lithuania, 
191,203, 206 ; Russia anxious to do 
justice to, 206 : prosperity of » under 
Russian rule, 198, 199, 202, 205, 
206 ; religious liberty in, 193, 207, 

Poles, the, contrasted with Finns, 193 ; 
'the Irish of the Continent,* 197; 
Lord Beaconsfield denounces, 201 ; 
'worst nation in Europe,' M. de 
Ciroourt, 206; numbers of, 206; 
demand religious supremacy, 193; 
insurrectionary classes of, 202, 205 ; 
millions said to be in Siberia, 209 ; 
Germanised in Pdeen, 225; bold 
high, commands in Russian army, 

Poltava, Battle of, Peter the Great at, 

Potemkin, Prince, on Anglo-Russian 
alliance, 355 

Prejudices, Some English, 181 ; na- 
tional, 189; origin of, 182. See 

Press, complete liberty of the, deared 
in Russia, 243 ; Lord Beaconsfield 
on, 251. See Newspapers 

Prestige, Mr. Carlyle on, 264 

Protocol, detested in Moscow, 13; 
rejection due to Lord Derby, 14 

RAMBAUD'S History of Russia, 
132, 249, 304 

Rawlinson, Sir Henry, on Russia's 
advance in Central Asia, 325; on 
Russians ca*Hi heUi against Khiva, 

Republics in Russia before Tartar 
oonquest, 41 

Representative Government. See 
Constitutionalism and Zemskie 

Rhodope, the, insurrection in, fo- 
mented by Englishmen, 85 ; fables 
of atrocities in, 187, 188 




Rieger, Dr., Bohemian PansUvist, on 
Slavonic sympathy with Buasia, 180 

Bochford, Ixnd, English Foreign 
Minister in 1772, 81 

Boman Catholics not persecuted in 
Poland, 193, 211 

Bomanoff, dynasty sprang from popu- 
lar election, 247 ; Michel, and the 
Zemskie Sobory, 247 

Bome, the old and the new, 167; 
church of, opposed by England and 
Bussia, 364 

Bonmania not dissatisfied with Do- 
brudscha, 49, 74 ; cession of Bes- 
sarabia by, 74 ; liberated by Bussia, 
288, 295; union of, supported by 
Russia, 311 

Boumelia, Eastern, not oo-eztensiye 
with Southern Bulgaria, 101, 115 ,-* 
area and population, 114; a 
vexatious absurdity, 158; consti- 
tution of, might be adopted further 
south, 158 

Burik, and successors divide Bussia, 

Bussia and Afghan War, 832. See 
Afghan War 

Bussia, and Austria, 130, 132, 150> 
165, 167, 297, 309, 312; Belgium, 
299, 301 ; Bulgaria, 76. 100, 112, 
155, 267, 288, 295, 311; arcassia, 
208 ; Constantinople, 160, 174, 241, 
291; Finland, 192, 193; France, 
129, 291, 304, 306; Germany, 127, 
288, 291, 304, 313; Greece, 76, 288, 
295, 311; Hungary, 296, 314; 
Italy, 288, 307 ; Khiva, 325 ; Mon- 
tenegro, 73, 316 ; Naples, 304, 313 ; 
Poland, 192, 196, 199, 204, 249 ; 
Boumania, 49, 74, 288, 295, 311 ; 
Servia, 34, 288, 295 ; Spain, 304, 
313; Sweden, 192; Tartars, 40, 
226; Turkey, 40, 107, 144, 170, 296, 
310, 314 

Bussia and England, parallels and con- 
trast s between, in Azoff and Cyprus, 
248; Circassia and Afghanistan, 
208; Finland and Wales, 192; 


Khiva and Ashantee, 349 ; Poland 
and Ireland, 197 ; Servia and the 
Netherlands, 18 ; Siberia and New 
South Wales, 210 ; Turkestan and 
India, 323, 348; Turkish pro- 
tectorates of, 137, 311, 314 ; aggres- 
sion, 322 ; annexations, 333 ; broken 
pledges, 324; capital punishment, 
184 ; cat and knout, 184 ; censor- 
ship, 92; civilising mission, 362; 
conquest, 328; constitution, 236, 
244 ; convict system, 215 ; corporal 
punishment, 184; war correspond- 
ents, 61 ; corruption and favouritism, 
66; the coupd*6tat, 306; European 
concert, 138, 140 ; Imperial powers, 
338 ; liberation of the oppressed, 
266; neutrality, 77; Napoleonic 
wars, 302 ; religion, 364 ; slavery 
and the slave trade, 365 ; San Ste- 
fano and Cyprus, 138 ; General 
Tchemayeff and Sir Philip Sydney, 
84 ; treaties annulled, 107, 137 ; 
foreign policy of, 290 ; in America, 
307 ; Austria, 309, 315 ; Belgium, 
296, 315; Bulgaria, 295, 311; 
Cracow, 312, 314; Crete, 316; 
France, 302 ; Germany, 304, 315-6 ; 
Greece, 255, 311, 314, 315 ; Hun- 
gary, 296; Lebanon, 315; Italy, 
288, 307 ; Montenegro, 316 ; Naples, 
304, 306, 316 ; Poland, 204 ; Bou- 
mania, 295, 311, 315; Schleswig 
Holstein,315 ; Servia, 295,315, 316 ; 
Spain, 304, 313 ; Turkey, 266, 296, 
310, 314, 316, 316 
Bussia, anarchy, early, of, 226 ; auto- 
cracy, saved by, 228; and the 
Black Sea, 312; Mr. Carlyle on, 

— Constitutionalism in, 239 

— democracy of, 232 ; an empire of 
villages, 228 

— and English Parties, 277 

— Foreign Policy of, a Reply to Mr. 
Gladstone, 290 

— Lord Aberdeen on, 306 ; Mr. Glad- 
stone on, 296 ; ' Friends or Foes * of. 

> 4*^ * < 






285 ; historic mission of, 66, 60, 
293 ; inured to ingratitude, 291 ; as 
a libeiating power, 267, 288, 810 ; 
prejudices against, 181 ; progress 
of, since 1854, Mr Butler John- 
stone, 275 
Bussia, Traditional Policy of, 852 

— saved Europe from Tartars, 43 ; 
Tartar conquest of, 43, 226 ; treaty 
of Kaimardji, 137; of Paris, 107, 
137 ; of Berlin, 107, 283 ; ridssi- 
tudes of, 227 

Russian ' agents,' 145 ; ' aggression an 
exploded illusion,' Mr. Ck)wen, 176 

— Aggression, 321 

— Autocracy, 223 

— concessions during the war, 73, 
264 ; at the Congress, 102 ; consti- 
tutionalism, 239; corruption, 65; 
democracy, 232; disasters during 
war, 52; generals, 68; intrigue, 
325 ; language difficult to learn, 
209 ; nationality, * sin of forsaking,' 
55 ; nobility, 232 

— the, Qovemment, opposed to war, 
6, 11 ; pacific efforts paralysed by 
England, 6 ; policy of, in the East, 
1876, 5, 174 ; blamed by Bussians 
for being too pacific, 7, 58, 73, 103 ; 
true to all its obligations, 25 ; op- 
posed to volunteering for Servia, 
11, 84 ; withholds information 
about the war, 54 ; ' exiles ' Mr. 
Aksakoff, for denouncing Berlin 
Treaty, 106 ; official view of Berlin 
Treaty, 107 ; proposes Austrian 
occupation of Bosnia and naval 
demonstration at Constantinople, 

— the. People, enthusiasm for the 
war in 1876, 7, 13, 29, 31, 46, 
47, 54, 100, 194, 246; attested by 
Lord Augustus Loftus, 16 ; by ' a 
retired Cossack,' 17 ; by Mr. Wal- 
lace, 17 ; and by Dr. 8andwith, 287; 
apathetic in 1875, 23 ; poor more 
enthusiastic than rich, 32 ; popular 
hatred of Turks, 29 ; ito cause, 40 ; 


Tolonteeiing for Servia, S9 
oppositaon to the Ctovenm 
84; 'Two Bnasias,* 11; di 
not understood in 8ervia» 
debt to the Servians,' 84 ; i 
of Mr. Aksakoff, 34, 68, 98 ; 
from no disaster, 46, 47, 54 ; 
enthusiasm o^ 47 ; educated 
less enthusiastic, 66; fif 
'peace, liberty, and fratema 
ity,' 57; suffering caused I 
52, 75 ; condemned conoeas 
England, 78 ; not alarmed x 
lish menaces, 912, 106; hui 
at Berlin, 104 ; popular viei 
cause and objects of the wa 
would rather fight than ooi 
divide Bulgaria, 106; re 
surrender everything to oon 
liberate the Christiana, IS 
appointed that peace was nc 
in Constantinople, 241 ; est 
from England, 280 ; would ik 
alliance with, 269, 370; si 
about England's sympathii 
the Christians, 282 ; suppoi 
cracy, 232 ; restore it, 233, i 

— Soldiers, character of, ' 
Brackenbury, 47; Mr. Al 
63; Mr. Forbes, 63; Sir 
Havelock, 187; humanity 
Hungary, 297 

Bussians, the, Sir Qeorge Gi 
on, 156 ; are reluctant to 
Ubels, 129, 185, 224 

— in Central Asia, 346; c 
their advance, 347 ; Mr. Ol 
on, 323, 347 ; Duke of Argy 
Sir Henry Bawlinson, 326 
b6ry, 349 ; Mr. Schuyler, 34! 
kestan not profitable to, 32 
civilising mission o^ 328 ; s 
slave 1;rade, 350; Protect 
350; Lord Mayo on, 330 ; Pi 
Monier Williams, 339. S 
ghanistan, Khiva, Tuikestar 

Bussias, the Two, Moscow \ 
Petersburg, 8; difference b 




national and official not nndeivtood 
in Servia,S4 

Bnssophobia, origin of, ignoranoe, 
182 ; foreign minrepreacntations, 
182; some absurdities and inoon- 
UBtencies of, 88; a national de- 
liriom, 292 ; Mr. Carlyle on, 293 

Bnsflophobists, Sir Henry Layaid, 79 ; 
Mr. Murray, 1772, 80; Mr. Gowen, 
176 ; Louis Kossnth, 160 ; Mr. Bat- 
ler Joiinstone, 276; Sir Henry 
Bawlinson, 326 ; M. Yamb^iy, 349 

BnsBO-Turkish War, the, national not 
imperial, humanitarian not pre- 
datory, 8, 6, 14, 21, 23, 29, 34, 88, 
44(, 66, 79, 100; Bnssian Govern- 
ment endeavoured to avert, 6, 68 ; 
efforts paralysed by English Go- 
vernment, 6; pc^mlar in Moscow 
not in St. Petersburg, 11, 66 ; *the 
most heroic war in the world,' Mr. 
Aksakoff, 64; denounced by the 
educated classes, 66 ; made by the 
people through the Slavonic So- 
cieties, 20, 66 ; Mr. Alcsakoff on the 
cause and objects of, 100; Mr. Sling- 
lake on origin of, 36 ; Dr. Overbeck 
on, 38 ; not a gladiator's but a 
liberator's war, 46; ennobling 
effect of, 47 ; expected to be over 
by July, 1877, 61 ; sacrifices entailed 
by, 61, 67, 206, 268; no com- 
pensation possible for losses caused 
by, 62 ; necessary to Bussia's de- 
velopment, 67 ; *a high moral duty,' 
57 ; reverses in, Mr. Aksakoff on, 
52 ; its limitation denounced, 69 

SAGHAUEN, only 400 convicts sent 
to, 258 
Salisbury, Lord, on large maps, 18; 
* Elisabethan policy,' 18; circular of, 
how regarded in Bussia, 75 ; annuls 
it by secret agreement, 88 ; as He- 
rald Angel, 123, 291 ; Manchester 
speech of , 123 ; JaunuU de St. Peters^ 
haurg on, 124 ; Bussian opinion on, 
1 25 ; defied by the Turks, 126 ; disco 


vers Germany, 127 ; styled * the vera^ 
cious,' 127; pre-occupied in 1876 
with ' creating pretexts ' for Afghan 
war, 181 ; deceives those who con- 
fided in the Circular of, 266 ; sup- 
ported by Bussia at Constantinople, 
281 ; ingratitude of, 291 ; on going 
to war against nightmare, 336 ; on 
a forward policy in Asia, 386 

Salonica, probable free port, 169 

Sandwith, Dr., on Jews in the East, 
268 ; on Bussian enthusiasm, 287 

Sohamyl and Shore Ali, 208 

Schleswig-Holstein, Anglo -Bussian 
action in, 316 

Schouvaloff, Count, the secret agree- 
ment with, 88 ; his unlucky French 
phrase ' nou» 9amme$ deda/iu^ 163 ; 
and Khiva, 329 

Scotchmen in Bussian service, 236 

Schuyler, Mr., on Bussians in Central 
Asia, 349 

Secret societies, Duke of Argyll on, 
19; Lord Beaoonsfield on, 20, 26; 
Slavonic societies not secret, 20 

Sepoys, effect of bringing to Malta, 
on Bussia, 93, 105 

Serfdom unknown before Tartar con- 
quest, 41 ; Polish origin of, 206 

Serfs, emancipation of, political con- 
sequences of, 27; freed by Alex- 
ander U., 230, 288 ; Mr. Gladstone 
on, 230 

Servia, sufferings of, by war, 34 ; Bussia 
indebted to, 34 ; railway to Sa- 
lonica, 159; projected annexation 
by Austria, 1787, 170 ; liberated by 
Bussia, 288, 295 

Servian volunteers, Busdian volun- 
teering objected to at St. Peters- 
burg, 11, 84 ; liord Augustus Loftus 
on, 16; compared to English in 
Netherlands, 18 ; number 4,000, 23 ; 
Mr. Aksakoff on, 29, 56 ; Nicholas 
Kir^eff, first volunteer killed, 29, 
38 ; movement not due to BIr. 
Gladstone's pamphlet, 39; Mr. 
Gladstone's tribute to, 286 




Servian war not made by secret so- 
cieties, 20, 25 

Seymour, Sir Hamilton, conversations 
with, 144, 162, 176, 298 

Shere Ali, General Kaufmann's Cor- 
respondence with, 342 ; Russia not 
bound to defend, 345 

Siberia* 209; misconceptions about, 
211 ; and English convict settle- 
ments, 213; number exiled since 
1800, 211; since 1860, 215; area 
of, 212, 219, 221 ; why convicts sent 
to, 213; mines of, comparatively 
few exiles in, 212; miners happy, 
218; three-fourths not convicts, 
220; defect of, too much freedom 
and leniency, 213, 215 ; ceasing to 
be a punishment, 220; Governor 
General Kosnakoff on, 225; soil 
and climate, Herbert Barry on, 214, 
258; Captain Wiggins, 217; the 
Standard, 219, 221 ; political offen- 
ders, 216 ; quicksilver mines sub- 
stitute for death penalty, 216; 
Polish falsehoods concerning, 207, 
216, 219; infinitely richer than 
Canada, 219 ; a vast market, 221 ; 
river system of, 221 ; Mr. Seebohm 
on, 221 

Sick lian, Heirs of, 142 ; Emperor 
Nicholas on, 144 ; Lord Palmerston, 

— Woman, the, of Europe, 133 

Silistria, defeat of Russians at, in 972, 

Slavery and the slave trade, England 
and Russia crusaders against, 328 ; 
in Turkey, 350 

Slavism, democratic, 320 

Slavonic societi<>« not secret, 20; 
male the Russo- Turkish war, 20, 
55 ; charitable, 21, 28 ; did not ori- 
ginate rising in the Herzegovina, 
22 ; Mr. Aksakoff on, 24 ; not pre- 
pared for work thrust on them, 26 ; 
first steps in 1875, 28; operations 
of, 28; spontaneous and universal 
spread of, 30 ; supported chiefly by 


the poor» 32 ; money raised by, 32 ; 
how spent) 33 ; denounced by edu- 
cated and official classes, 55 

Slavophils, Moscow, in 1848, 297 

Slavs, protect Europe from Asia, 43 ; 
Russia's mission to, 57 ; Austria- 
Hungary unjust to, 58; Russia, 
chief representative of, 103 ; Aus- 
trian sympathies with Russia, 130; 
form a majority of subjects of 
Francis Joseph, 130 ; * Slav coun- 
tries belong to Slavs,' 149; Koosuth 
on, 150 ; will dominate the future 
of Austria, 152, 309 ; must/ofv da 
J0^ 153 ; anarchy, the besetting sin 
of, 225; only Slav country free, 
independent and strong, 231 ; 'stand 
on the threshold of the morning,* 
289 ; of Hungary protected but not 
recognised by Russia in 1848, 297 

Smith, Mr. W. H., on friendship with 
Russia, 292 

Somerset, Duke of, on representative 
government, 238 

Spain, Russian policy in, 1822, 304; 
M. Thiers on French intervention 
in, 305 

Speranski, 335 

Standard, the, on Siberia, 219 

Statesmany the, on origin of Rusbo- 
phobia, 182; on Elhiva, 328 

Status quo, in Turkey in 1876, internal 
and external incompatible, 5 

Stefano, San, Treaty of, excites dis- 
pleasure in Russia, 73 ; a humble 
half measure, 90 ; loyally submitted 
to Congress, 138 ; on the boundaries 
of Bulgaria, 158 ; three-fourths re- 
enacted at Berlin, 283; commu- 
nicated to England, 360 

Stein on Alexander I., 303 

Stephen, Sir J. Fitzjames, approved 
of the Kaufmann Correspondence, 

Stillman, Mr. W. J., Timet correspon- 
dent in the Herzegovina, 22; on 
Austria-Hungary, 151 

Stockmar, Baron, on diplumotisls. 




12 ; on Russian policy in Belgium, 

Stoletoff's Mission at Gabul, 339. See 

Afghan War. 
Suez Canal, disorowns Constantinople, 

Sviatoslaf crushes Bulgaria, and is 

defeated bj Zimisces, 169 
Swedes, bad rulers of Finland, 192 ; 

at Novgorod the Great, 228 

1 TALLEYRAND proposes Austrian 
• annexation of Northern Turkey, 

Tartar conquest of Russia, 40, 226; 
its duration, 40 ; nature, 42 ; results, 
43, 227 

Tartars bum Moscow twice, 42, 227 ; 
St. Louis of France on, 42 ; Russia 
saved Europe from, 43 ; justify the 
autocracy, 227 

Tcherkassky, Prince, Mr. Aksakoff on, 

Tchemayeff, Gen., volunteers to go to 
Montenegro, 22, 28 ; goes to Servia, 
28; assisted by Slavonic Society, 
29, 33; not employed in Turkish 
war, 67, 69; resembles Sir Philip 
Sydney more than Hobart Pasha, 
81 ; his opinion of Bulgarians, 167 

TennjTSon, Mr., and the knout, 182 

Thiers, M., on Austria and Rome, 
166; on centralisation in France, 
237 ; on French intervention in 
Spain, 1822, 305 

Tilsit, negotiations and treaty of, 

Timei^ the, Mr. Stillman, correspon- 
dent of, in the Herzegovina, 22 ; 
Mr. Wallace at St. Petersburg, 8 ; a 
weathercock, 125 ; publishes letters 
from Moscow in 1876, 186 ; derides 
Russian suspicion of Nihilistic in- 
trigue in Foreign Embassies, 254 

Timour the Tartar signs death-warrant 
of Turkey, 44 


Tooqueville, De, on the moral element 
in submission to despotism, 224 ; on 
centralising instinct of democracy, 

Todleben, Gen., why not employed 
earlier in the war, 68 

Traditional policy of England, 272 ; 
was Russian, 272, 354 ; needs re- 
vision, 276 

Traditional policy of Russia, 352. See 
Anglo-Russian Alliance. 

Treaties of Berlin, 95, 99, 107 ; Eair- 
nardji, 137; Paris, 109, 138, 312; 
Vienna, 204, 318 ; Villafranca, 117 

Treaty obligations, Russia and Eng-^ 
lish Liberals on, 283 

Trevelyan, Sir Charles, on England 
and Russia, 270 ; on Khiva, 329 

Triple Alliance, the, and the East, 3 ; 
decease of, not lamented by Russia, 

Turkish-Anglo Convention, 134. See 
Anglo-Turkish Convention. 

Turkey, Russian policy in 1876, main- 
tains gtatiu quo plus tributary states, 
6; future policy in, 107; Russia 
desires no annexations, 145; seeks 
European concert, 148; and terri- 
torial integrity of, 149; regards 
Turkey as good gatekeeper of Bos- 
phorup, 162; supported Turkey in 
1833 and 1840, 164; liberating 
mission of Russia in, approved by 
English Liberals, 296, 310 

Turkish alliance with England, Mr. 

• Aksakoff on, 58 ; denounced by 

Burke, 272; Lord Holland, 272; 

Fox, 357 ; Boris Godounoff on, 296, 

354 ; comparatively recent, 272 

Turks insult Lord Salisbury, 126; 
defy Europe and civilisation, 276. 
See Russo-TurkiBh War. 

Turkestan, a questionable paradise, 
68 ; not profitable, 323, 348; Russia's 
civilising mission in, 323 ; Mr. Glad- 
stone on, 323; more like African 
settlements than Indian Empire, 
349. See Russians in Central Asia. 



Tsar. See Autocracy and Alexander 


Tzargrad* name of Ck>n8tantinople, 

VAMBERY, M., on Bosdan nde in 
Bokhara, 349 
Variags, or Varang^ns, expeditions 

against Bjiantiom, 169 ; summoned 

by Russians, 226 
Venice, possessions in East in 1787» 

Verona, Congress of, 813 
Vienna, Congress of, Poland at, 204 ; 

adds Belgium to Holland, 318 
Vikings, early Russian monarchs, 168 
Villafranca, Treaty of, destroyed by 

aspirations of nationality, 117 
Villages, Russia an empire of, 228 
Vitkevitch on Afghanistan, 339 
Vladimir Monomaohus married 

daughter of Harold, 352 
Volunteers, Russian, in Servia. See 

Servian Volunteers. 
Volunteers, English in Netherlands, 

19 ; in Turkey, 76, 83 

WALLACE, Mr. D. M., Time$ cor- 
respondent at St. Petersburg, 
8 ; on Russian enthusiasm for war, 
17; Mr. Aksakoff, 24; Russian 
autocracy, 223 
War correspondents, advantages of, 
54 ; in Russia and England, 61 ; 


their testimony conoenuDg Bnaaia, 

War vote, the, of six millions, 76, 359 

Wellington, Duke of, on European 
concert in Turkey* 147; regrets 
Constantinople was not entered by 
Russia, 172; on Poland, 904; 
anecdote of, 274 

Whitelocke, Bulstrode, ambassador to 
Sweden, 263 

Wiggins, Captain, on Siberia, 217 

Williams, Professor Monier, on Eng- 
land and Russia in Asia, 338 

Wingaeld, Sir Charles, on Bngland*s 
Afghan policy, 337 

Worontsoff, Prince, advocates Attgk>- 
Russian alliance, 365 

YAROSLAF the Great defeated by 
Monomaohus, 169 

ZEMSKIE Sobory, nature of, 231; 
consulted by Ivan IV., 231; 
offer crown to Boris Oodoonoff, 
232 ; rc-establishment desired, 24S ; 
meaning of, 244 ; objected to by 
some officials, 245, 247 ; suppress oli- 
garchy and restore autocracy, 246 ; 
founded Romanoff dynasty, 247; 
consulted by liichel Bomanol^ on 
Polish war, 247 ; on annexation of 
Azoff, 248 
Zimisces, John, defeats Sviatoslaf, 




39 Patbrnostbr Row, E.C 
London, Jtdy 1879. 



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Essays on Religion xo 

Hamilton's Philosophy 5 

Liberty 5 

— ^^— — Political Economy 5 

Representative Goveminent 


WORKS' published by LONGMANS 6- CO. 

iiiUs (J. S.) Subjection of Women 5 

— — System of Ix>gic 5 

— ^ Lfnsettled Questions 5 

— ^ Utilitarianism 5 

i/«/bf^j Elements of Chemistry — • 13 

Inorganic Chemistry xz 

.^^— 6* Skertchl^'s Fenland 18 

BiitchtlTs Manual of Assaying 15 

Milions Paradise Reined, by Jerram ... 6 

Modem Novelist's Library 18-19 

McmstUs Spiritual Songs 17 

iiooris Irisn Melodies, Illustrated Edition 13 

Lalla Rookh, Illustrated Edition.. 13 

MortiTs Philosophical Fragineots 5 

Morris's Agje of Anne 3 

Motarfs Ofe, by A7^/ 4 

MUlUr^s Chips from a German Workshop. 7 

— — Hibbert Lectures on Religion ... 16 

Science of Language 7 

Science of Religion x6 

MnlUnger's Schools of Charles the Great ... 6 

Ntison on the Moon 9 

Nitdle's Horses and Riding 20 

Newmans Apologia pro Vit& SuA 4 

Nicob*s Purile of Life la 

Noiri's MQIler & Philosophy of Language 7 

Nwikcotis Lathes & Turning 14 

CtCamor's Scripture Commentary x6 

Omem's Comparative Anatomv and Phy- 
siology of Vertebrate Animals iz 

PaMs Guide to the Pyrenees 18 

Pattison's Casaubon 4 

Payen's Industrial Chemistry 14 

Pewiner's Comprehensive Specifier ai 

Phillips's iZ\\\\ War in Wales a 

PoU's Game of Whist ai 

Popes Select Poems, by Arnold 6 

PcwelTs Early England 3 

Prtece & Sivfwright's Telegraphy 11 

Present-Day Thoughts 7 

/Vwc/lw'j Astronomical Works 9 

— — Scientific Elssays (Two Scries) ... 11 

Prothtro's De Montfort a 

Public Schools Atlas of Ancient Geog^phy 8 

•— Atlas of Modem Geography 8 

Rawlinson's Parthia 3 

— — Sassanians 3 

Recreations of a Country Parson 7 

Reynardson's Do^^n the Road 19 

i?frA'j Dictionary of Antiquities 8 

Rivers' s Orchard House 12 

—— Rose Amateur's Guide la 

Rogers's Eclipse of Faith 15 

— ^— Defence of Elclipse of Faith 15 

Rogefs English Thesaurus 8 

Ronalds' Fly-Fisher's Entomology 20 

^tfwAry'j Rise of the People 3 

— ^ Settlement of the Constitution ... 3 

Rutleys Study of Rocks 11 

^tfjf^ri'i Justinian's Institutes 5 

5aiiit<x'j Sparta and Thebes 3 

ScheUens Spectrum Analysis 9 

Seaside Musings 7 

Scotfs Farm Valuer ai 

SeeJMkm's Oxford Reformers of 1498 a 

Seebohm's Protestant 

* m 



SewelTs History of France 

Passing Thoughts on Religion 

— Preparation for Communion .. 

Stories and Tales 

Thoughts for the Age 

Shelley s Workshop Appliances 

Shorfs Church History 

Smith's {Sydney) Wit and Wisdom 
(Eh-. R. A.) Air and Rain 

— (R . B. )Carthage & the Carthaginians 

Awi*4r>^j Poetical Works 

Stanl^s History of British Birds 

Stephen's Ecclesiastical Biography 

Slonehenge, Dog and Greyhound 

Stoney on Strains 

StuMs's Early PUntagcnets ^.. 

Sunday Afternoons, by A. K. H.B 

Supernatural Religion 

Swinboume's Picture Logic 

Tancock's England during the Wars, 

Taylor's History of India 

— — ^-^ Ancient and Modern History ... 

[Jeremy) Works, edited by Edem 

Text-Books of Science .'. 

ThowWs Botany 

Thonuon's Laws of Thought 

Thorpe's Quantitative Analysis 

Thorpe and Muir's Quahtative Analysis ... 

Tildens Chemical Philosophy 

Todd on Parliamentary Government 

Trench's Realities of Irish Life 

Trollobe's Warden and Barchester Towers 

Twisss Law of Nations 

Tyndalts (Professor) Scientific Works ... 


Unwins Machine Design 

Ure's Arts, Manufactures, and Mines 

Ville on Artificial Manures 

Walker on \Wi\sl 

Walpole's History of England 

Warburtons Ed\%'ard the lliird 

Watson's Geometery 

Watts's Dictionary of Chemistry 

WeinholSs Experimental Physics 

Wellington's Life, by GL'ig 

Whately's English Synonymcs 



White's Four Gospels in Greek 

and Riddle's Latin Dictionaries 

Wilcocks's Sea-Fisherman 

Williams's Aristotle's Ethics 

Willich's Popular Tables 

Wilsons Resources of Modem Countries... 
Woods (J. G.) Popular Works on Natur.U 


(J. T.) Ephesus 

Woodward s QiisCiXogy 

Yonge's English-Greek Lexicons 

-^— Horace 




































Yonatt on the Dog 

on the Horse .. 

Zeller's Plato. Socrates, 
Zimmem's Les&ing 









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