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li.{».; F.R.S.; F.L.S.; M.R.I.; F.6.S.; & M.R.A.S. 

is Ofdiaary to H.R.H. tb* Doke of Clarence. PbTiieian-Accoaehear to the WctUiiin> 

1 DlipeiimnF, and to the Benerolent Ljlii«-in l!««tltiitioii ; Principal Phjslclan to the 

iMliUn lafirmary Ibr Sick Children .* Hon. Jleniber of the Rojal Academy of Medicine 

Concep. Member of the Imperial Academy of Sciencet of St. Petertbnrgh, and Hon. 

ef the Imperial Mcdico-Chirargleal Academy of the lame town : Foreign Auoclate of 

[f^ Acadcmj af Hciance* at Naple* ; Member of the Phjiico- Mathematical Clau of the Kojal 

ef Seicficea of Tniin ; Corresp. Member of the Medico-Chimrgtcal Society of Berlin ; 

Member ef the Naiaral HiMory Society of Halle ; Correcp. Member ef tbe Pmttlaa 

of Boon; of the Philomathic and Philotechnic Soeletlei, and the SociHf MeMeaU 

Parfa ; of the Philoeophieal and Literary Society of Mancbeater : of the OtargtffiH 

' : of the Medical and Scientific Societies of Maraelllei. Florence, PiitoiJa. Val d'Amo, 

iTtnice, te.} and Member of the Royal College ef Vliytlciant in London. 





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Dorset Street, Fleet Stieet. 

^ 2 2AUGW62 I 






The Imperial Family — the Imperial Govermnent .... * Page 1 — 61 


Boildings and Institutioiis oomiected with the Administration of Govern- 
ment. — The Senate House. — Code in the handwriting of Catherine II.— 
The Admiralty. — ^Buildings, plan, and internal arrangement. — Its Cabinets 
of Natural History and National Curiosities. — The Model Rooms. — Ge- 
neral Bentham and the Carriage-ship. — Launch of the Alexander, 110 
guns, and two other ships of the Une. — Thmr conveyance to Cronstadt. — 
Russian Nary. — The £tat-Major. — Departments of Greography, Hydo- 
gr^hy, and Land^iSurveying. — The lathographic Department. — ^DepAt 
of Haps and sale of them. — Great Map of the Russian Empire. — Secret 
Geographical Cabinet. — Travelling Maps of Alexander. — Autograph 
Schemes of Alexander, for Reviews and Sham-Fights. — Topography of the 
different Governments. — Manufactories of Mathematical Instruments. — 
The Printing-press Department. — The Chaneellerie. — The Library. — ^Auto- 
graph Letters of Peter the Great. — The War-game. — The Incombustible 
HalL — ^Military Archives from the time of Peter the Great. — Domestic 
Establishment of the People resident in the Palace of the £tat-Major. — 
General Observations. — The ChlLteau St. Michel.— The Corpt du GenU,—^ 
The Ar8enals.--The Foiundery.^The Colleges.— -The Post-Office.— The 
prasent System. — Distribution of Letters. — Private Post-office for oorre- 
sponding with the Emperor. — Revenue of the Post-office. — The Citadel. — 

a 2 


The Mint. — Oeneral Enumeration of other Public Buildings connected with 
the Administration of the Civil and Military Government at St. Peters- 
burgh ...... Page Sa— 99 


Imperial Buildings and Institutions (^nnected with Science and the Fine 
Arts. — The Imperial Academy of Sciences. — Its Constitution. — ^Contribu- 
tions to Science. — Great and Illustrious Members of that Academy. — Mon- 
sieur Ouvaroff, the President — The Observatory. — The Gottorp Globe. — 
The Zoological Museum. — The Cabinet of Mineralogy. — The Mammoth. — 
Native Iron of Pallas. — ^Anatomical Collections. — Cabinet of Peter the 
Great. — Cabinet of Curiosities. — The Insects and dry Plants. — The Mu- 
seum of Medals and Asiatic Museum. — The Egyptian Museum. — Grand 
General Meeting to commemorate the Conclusion of the first Century since 
the Foundation of the Academy. — Visit of the Empress-mother to the 
Academy, at the beginning and end of the second half of that Century. — 
The Secular Medal. — Printing-press of the Academy. — The Author's Public 
Lecture at the Academy. — Presented with the Secular Medal, and made a 
Member of tiiat Society .... Page 100 — 133 


Continuation of the Imperial and other Buildings and Institutions con- 
nected with Science and the Fine Arts. — Prevailing Taste for the Arts. — 
A self-taught Painter. — Titian and Mr. Sieger. — Private CoUections of 
Pictures. — Count Strogonoff*s Gallery. — The President d*01enine. — Aca- 
demy of Arts. — The Building. — The Museum. — Public Exhibition by Na- 
tive Artists. — Russian Sculptors and Painters. — Professor Vorobieff and his 
Pictures of St. Petersburgh, and of Sunset on the Dead Sea. — Orlowsky. — 
Liberality of Government respecting the Education of Young Artists. — 
The Triumphal Arch of 1812. — Society for encouraging Russian Litho- 
graphy. — Roumiantxow's Museum of Curiosities. — The H6tel des Mines. — 
The Building. — The Establishment compared with others of a similar kind 
in Europe. — Minerals. — Mines of Siberia. — Large Specimens of Native 
Gold. — Instruction in practical Mining. — Domestic Arrangement for the 
Students. — Produce of the Grold and Platina Mines in the Oural Moun- 
tains. — Origin of the wealth of the Demidoff Family. — The Miner's 
Hammer. — Style of living of the Privy Counsellor Demidoff. — His 
death.— Sod^t^ libre Economique of St. Petersburgh. — School for Agricul- 
ture, Rural Economy, and the Useful Arts, founded by Countess Sophia 
Strogonoff* — Cabinet of Arts and Antiquities of Mons. Svinnin. — The Bo- 
tanic Garden ...... Page 134 — 175 



CkorcfaeB a^d ReBgious Institutions. — Toleration. — Seven Temples of 
different CSommnnions in one Street.^ — Divisions of the Clergy. — Contem- 
plated Improvements. — Preaching encouraged as a means of Civilization. — 
The Holy Synod. — Number of Churches and Ecclesiastics. — The Metropo- 
litan Church of our Lady of Kazan. — Military Trophies. — Tomb of Kutu- 
mffy and the baton of Marshal Davoust. — Alexander. — The Imperial 
Jewels. — Platoff and the Cossacks' gift. — Monastery of St. Alexander 
Nenkdi. — ^The Cathedral of the Holy Trinity. — Shrine of the Saint in 
solid Silver — The Jewels. — The Cloisters. — The Church of the Annuncia- 
tion. — Monuments of Souvoroff and Miloradovitch. — Tomb of the Narysch- 
Idne family, and of the Sheremetieffs. — Russian Pantheon. — The Cemetery. 
— ^Prevailing good taste of the Monuments. — The Countess Potemkin. — 
Monumental Column to Lomonossoff. — Proposed new Monument to that 
poet. — Grand new Church of St. Isaac — Its Plan and Elevation. — The 

Coiotsal granite Columns Church of St. Peter and St. Paul. — Tombs of 

the Sovereigns. — The Catholic Church. — Moreau*s Tomb. — The Lu- 
theran Churches. — The English Church. — Oreco- Russian Church Service. 
— Beligioos Ceremonies of the Russians. — Imperial Christenings and Te 
Dewns. — Rituals for the celebration of Matrimony. — Invitation to a Wed- 
dings—Church Ceremony. — Beautiful Prayers. — Domestic Scenes. — Rus- 
sian Funerals . • . Page 176—214 


Pnliminary Notice.^ — The University of St. Petersburgh. — Scientific 
£ducatMni.^— Oeneral and Elementary System of Education. — Schools for 
the People. — ^Encouragement for the Cultivation of the Russian Language. 
—The Imperial Russian Academy of Literature. — New Plan of Elemen- 
tary Education. — ^Professor Qreitsch's Lectures on the Russian Language. 
— ^Pedagogic Schools. — Sentiments of the reigning Emperor respecting Edu- 
cation. — His means of promoting iu — Enumeration of Public Places of Edu« 
cation existing in St. Petersburgh. — Oriental Institute. — The Land Cadet 
Coipa, and the Marine Cadet Corps. — Naval Academy, and other Esta- 
biishmentt. — ^Domestic or Private Education. — ^Oeneral Benkendorff. — Im- 
perial Message. — Doctor Ruhl. — Recognition. — The Communauii des De- 
moimOM Nobles The Institute of St. Catherine.— System of Female Edu- 
cation for the higher dasses of Society. — Imperial Public Library. — Kriloff, 
the Fabulist. — Manuscript Letters of Sovereigns. — Specimen of Louis 
Xjy.*s eariy Notions of Royal Authority. — ^The Press. — Encouragement 
to AothorSi — ^Modern Russian Literature. — ^Death of Karamsin, the His- 
torian. — ^Russian Poetry. — ^Alexander Pousefakine, the Russian Q^ron. — 
Faholists, Soomarokoff, Khemnitzer, Dmitrieff, IsmaYloff, and B. raisch- 



kine. — The Romantic SchooL — Baratinsky. — Jookovsky. — Mademoisfille 
Zenaide Volkonsky. — Dramatio Literatare.— Prince ChakhovBky. — Num- 
ber of Books published in Russia, since the Introduction of the Art of 
Printing. — Periodical Literatore. — List of Periodical Publicationa at St. 
Petenburgh and Moscow .... Page 216 — ^260 


Practice of Medicine. — Medicines and Medical Supplies. — Principal Phy« 
sicians and Surgeons in St. Petersburgh. Alleged deficiency of very dis- 
tinguished Men. — Domestic Physicians. —Police of the Medical Profession. 
-^Eaay remedy to extirpate Quacks. R^ulations respecting j^rtntMcieru. 
— Esprit de Corps of the Medical Profession in St. Petersburgh. — Mode of 
remunerating Physidans. — Papillionage of the higher Classes of Society. — 
Serious Complaints against them. — New Plan for remunerating the Medical 
Profession. — Imperial Distinctions and Rewards. — The Imperial Medico- 
Chirurgical Academy. — Distribution of Studies. — Medical and other Classes. 
— ^The Library. — ^The Pedestri^, or General Military Hospital. — ^Clinical 
Establishments for Medical, Surgical, and Ophthalmological practice. — De- 
ficiencies. — Nayal Hospitals. — Regimental Hospitals. — Hospitals of the 
Guards. — The Great Artillery Hospital. — Russian Surgery.^— Dr. Arendt. 
— Unusual success in Surgical Operations. — The Civil Hospitals. — Obou- 
ohoff. — Physic by the dozen. — Lunatic Asylum. — Insane people scarce in St. 
Petersburgh. — Ivanoff. — Kalinkin. — Bogadelna and the Centenarians. — 
Imperial Hospital for the Poor. — The Building. — Internal Arrangement 
and Distribution of Patients. — Results. — ' hilanthropy of the Empress- 
mother. — ** Enfans Trouv^es." — Maison d*Accoudiement. — Masked La- 
dies. — Imperial Lying-in Institution. — Vaccination. — ^Dispensary for Dis- 
eases of the Eyes.— JVf anufactory of Surgical Instruments Page 261 — 301 


Commercial add other Establishments of Industry, and their Buildings. 
— The Imperial Exchange. — The Rostral Columns. — ^The first Foreign Ship 
at St. Petersburgh. — Peter the Great and the Dutch Skipper_Inaugara- 
tion of the New £xchange.-i^Affability and Condescension of Alexander the 
First towards the English Merchants. — New Imperial Warehouses.— Cus- 
tom House. — Navigation of Merchant Vessels up the Neva. — Number of 
Vessels entered at St. Petersburgh in 1827< — Amount of Tonnage for that 
Year. — Lists of Imports and Exports for the last ten Years. — ^Balance of 
Export Trade in favour of Russia. — General value of Com exported in 
1826 and 1827*-— Custom-house Revenue, during the last six years. — • 
Steady increase of it every year.— Number of Vessels entered and cleared, 
daased according to Nations.— Decrease in those belonging to England.-.- 


Mercantile Spirit and Industry of the Ba88ian8.-«Interior Navigation 

Canal between St. PetenburghandMoaoow^A Curious Discovery Peter 

tlie Great, and the noted Financier, Law Proposed Asiatic Trade Com. 

pany^— Imperial Manufactories.— Plate Glass Zavod — Colossal Mirror for 
the Doke of Wellington* — Crystal Bed for the Shah of Persia.^Farfo. 
rovoi Zavod, or China and Porcelain Manu&ctory. — ^Alexandrowaky..^ 
General Wilson. — ^English and American Machinery imitated in Russia.-^ 
Cotton Manufactory...Profit from the Manufactory of 
I>iaGip]ine and Treatment of the Foundlings employed at Alezandrowsky. 
«.-The Kolpinskol Zavod. — Coins. — Paper Currency. — ^Mons. Cancrin's 
Opimons on that Subject — ^Anumnt of Bank Notes in Bussia. — The Assig- 
qntaionnoi Bank.— Bevenue of Bussia.— National Debt. — Amount of An- 
nual Redemption.— The Loan Bank.— The Commercial Bank. — The Lom- 
*»*^ . * . • . • Page 302— 334 


Introduction to Court. — Ceremonial attending it* — Interview with hia 
prssent Majesty and with the Empress-mother. — Ton of Society. — The fair 
Sex. — Opinion of a modem French Traveller. — Soirdes. — ^Balls. — Internal 
azrangement of the Paboes and other Houses of the Nobility. — ^Extravagant 
number of Servants uid attendants. — Principal Palaces of Noblemen at St. 
Petersboii^i. — ^F^tes prita and '* at homes.** — ^Visiting. — Birth^days. — Ono- 
wastic days. — Court Fdtes. — ^Bal Masqu^ at the Taurida Palace. — Imperial 
Qmstenings. — Dinners.^ — ^Form and style of a Russian Dinner in the houses 
9f the great. — English Sauce and Russian Cookery. — Delicious Fish. — In- 
trodnction of the English fashion of Dining. — ^Mansion of Count Stanislaua 
Potocki. — ^Dining among the English at St. Petersburgh. — '^ Conversazioni.** 
—Cards. — ^La Mouche. — Splendour and pomp of the Russian Nobility in 
fomer timea. — Grande Society at the Palace of the late Great Chamberlain, 
Narysdikine. — His fortune, death, embalming, and burial. — Lion Narysch- 
kine. — ^Bfidnight Suppers.— State of Society among the Russian Merchants. 
— ^Magnificent Houses and F6tes of some of them. — The Clubs. — The 

English dub.— The Commercial Club ^The English Library — The Tiers 

JSiai 9— ^Public Walks.— The Lounge in the Nevskoi Prospekt, the Regent. 
Street of St. Petersbmigh. — ^Eipiipages and Pedestrians. — The English and 
.the Russian Qnays.-*-The Summer Gardens, and its magnificent railing 

Page 335—375 


• • • . 

The llkeatres. — The Great Theatre.^ — Russian Opera, — Madame Seme. 
Dflff.— SamoikrfF the Tenor.— JCaratiguine, the tragic Actor.— Russian 
Fai'ces Grand Rnsrian Ballet at the Opera.— Jtfademoiselle Istomlna. — 
La Bertrand.^— S^ool for Singing and Acting.— The Little Theatre.*The 


French Play. — ^Madame he Bras.-»The German Comedy and German 
Operas.— Madame Funk. — Mademoiselle Pohlmamu— .Monsieur Schwartz. 
— The Italian Opera at St. Petersburgh.— Signora Bartolucci.— Mademot-' 
seUe Zamboni.— Sig^or Tosi.— The recruited Signore, at Warsaw. — English 
Theatre. — Summer Theatres at Kamennoi and Yelaguiiie Islands. — Astley's 
of St> Petersburgh, or Cirque (PEquUaHon, — English Newspapers and Rus- 
sian Bills of the Play. — Drapt de Lit and Mouchairg de Pochs, — ^General 
Imperial Direction of the Theatres, at St. Petersburgh. — New Company of 
Italian Singers.— -Mademoiselle Melas^-^egulations for, and Privilegee of 
successful Dramatic Authors. — Musical Clubs .^-»S(Oci^l Philharmanique,'^' 
C(donel Lvoff and the Marchesa Pallayicini.-~The Chanireg de la C<nir^~^ 
Italo-Russian Church Music— Bortniansky, the great Russian Composer. 
—The Hunting Musics-Russian Dances. — The Qolubetz.— The Cossack 
Dance.-— Popular Sports and Diversions^. — The Ice-Hills — The Moniagnei 
Hussety without Snow.— The Swaika. ■ The Jumping Board.— Boxing, or 
Kulatschno'i Boy. — Excess of Luxury in the Head-dress of the Women.^- 
Costume of the Russian Merchants. — Reform of manners. — ^Goose-fighting, 
i —Field Sports.— .Hunting the Wolf .—Hunting the Bear. — Bear-Hunting 
Party .^-Description of a Bear-hunt..— Bears-paws, a delicious dish— Game 
Laws.— ^orse Races. — Pleasure Boats . • . Page 87&*-4()5 


The Markets. — The Siennaia, or Hay-maiket. — Frozen Fish and Frozen 
Flesh..— Hay Sledges. — The Round Market, or Krougloi Rynok. — ^Fish 
peculiar to Russia. — Black and Red Cariar.— The Floating Fish-markets. 
—Summer and Winter Fishing, near St. Petersburgh. — Ice-Breakers.-» 
Phenomenon on breaking the Ice. — Market for Frozen Provisions. — Price 
of Provisions during the Winter Season. — Milk and Milkmaids.— The 
Miasno'i Rynok. — Ukraine Oxen.— Slaughtering. — ^The TolkoutchoT Ry- 
nok, or Rag Market.— Voltaire in a Russian Market— The Fruit and 
Bird Market. — Live Birds. — Profusion and cheapness of Poultry.-.-.Sbitene 
and SbitenBtchick.-.-Kvass and other National Beverages. — Pivo.— £piritu« 
ous Liquors. — Kabacks and Gin Shops.— Drunkenness in St. Petersburgh 
and Drunkenness in London. — ^Wines. — Water of the Neva. — The Chelsea 
Dolphin— Russian Tea-Drinking..-^hops of St. Petersburgh.— The Goe- 
tinnoT Dvor.— The Drug Shops. — Russian Materia Mediea,'»^The English 
Magazine. «- Clothing. — Financial R^^ulation.- £« TaUleur pair exeei~ 
lenoe^ and let meUleures Modistes, — The Fur Shops. — The Linen Trade. — 
Expenses of Living at St. Petersburghu — Rasnostchidk. — ^Winter and Sum- 
mer Carriers. — Appendix. ' . . . Page 406-1-485 


Conversations with eminent and impartial persons, on many important 
Subjects. — Progress of Civilisation in Russia. — Parallel with that of Eng- 


land. — Jurisprudence and state of the legal profession in Russia^ — Forms 
of Law ; nuniber and cliaracter of various Courts, — Administration of 
Justice. — Trial by Peers. — Court of Habeas Corpus in St. Petersbur^^ — 
Prisons, and Prison Discipline. — The Town Gaol, on the plan of Howard* — 
Extraordinary number of prisoners in Russia during 1826. — Still more 
extraordinary reduction in the course of a twelvemonth. — Society forjm- 
pnmng Prison Discipline. — Commission of General SwrveiUafnoe.^—X^' 
poral Punishments. — ^Whipping in the West Indies. — Flogging in .the 
British Navy. — ^The Knout in Russia. — Description of the Instrument. — 
Ceremony of its Application. — The ^' Cat-o*-nine«>tails.** — The Rope's^nd 
— Commission for drawing up new Codes of Laws. — Monsieur Speransky. — 
Monsieur Balouhiansky. — Capture of Tiflis. — Public Illuminations at St. 
Petenburgh. — Watch-houses. — Boodoechniks, or military Watchmen. — 
Proclamation of New Laws. — Iron Pavilions, and Fires in the Street, pro 
bonapubiico, — State of the Police in St. Petersburgh. — Provisions against 
Fire. — New Fire Insurance Company. — Absence of Beggars. — The Mili.< 
tary Oovemor-General of St. Petersburgh. — Census and Statistics of Rus- 
sia — The Julian vertue the Gregorian Calendar, or Old and New Style. — 
System of Servage in Russia. — Exposi and apparent advantages of that 
System. — Rectification of erroneous ideas on that subject. — Mode of recruit- 
ing the Army dependent thereon. — ^Fadlity of collecting the Pubhc Income 
founded on that System. — Particulars respecting General Levies. — CorpcN 
ral punishments in the Russian Army. — Succession to the Throne of Rus- 
sia in 1825. — Contest of Loyalty and Affection between two Imperial Bro- 
thers. — The Military Revolt of the 26th of December. — Death of Milora- 
dowitch. — Firmness and bravery of Nicholas. — Detected Conspiracy. — Ci^i- 
tal Punishment . ' . . Page 4S6— 486 


Imperial Country Residences and Environs of St. Petersburgh. — Tchesmd. 
— ^Portraits of contemporary Sovereigns with Catherine. — Sad coincidences 
and recollections. — The Caprice. — Theatrical Village. — Tropheal Cohmin 
to Orloff. — La Tour des Heritiers.— Alezandik>vsky. — Sophia. — The Palace 
of Tzarsco-^o. — ^Elizabeth and the French Ambassadors. — Catherine and 
the gold scrapers. — Architecture of the Palace. — Fate of the great Archi- 
tects, Raatrelli, Brenno, Dumot, Voronikhin, Cameron, and Guaren^. — 
Apartments at Tzarsoo-^elo. — The Amber and Lapis-lazuli Rooms. — Parks 
and PlflMure Grounds.----Omamental Buildings, Temples, and Colonnades. 
— Peter the Great and a grateful Empress, or origin of Tzarsco-^lo. — 
Paukytrsky. — Trip to Gatchina. — Baron de Meyendorff and General 
Stanger. — The Emperor Paul's Establishment. — Polypharmacy. — The 
School for Foundlings. — ^The Imperial Residence of Gatchina^— ^atherin* 
YksUL — Strehia. — Modem Russian Painting8.—Peterhoff. — The Empress 
Alexandra*s Cottage. — Her taste and that of the Emperor for Architee* 

VOL. II. b 


tnre, and real domestic comforts. — Superb View of the Country. — The 
Palace of Peterhoff. — Private Residence of the Emperor Nicholas — ^The 
Russian Versailles. — The Emperor Alexander's Private Cabinet. — Last 
Visit. — State Apartments. — The Great Portrait Room. — Monplasir. — Kit- 
chen and Bed-room. — L*Hermitage. — The Independent Dining Table. — 
Marly.-^The Water-works. — Peter's Sagacity. — His extensive Wardrobe. 
— Oranienbaum. — The Ha! — ^Cronstadt. — The Islands of Yelaguine and 
KameanoV. — Preparations for Departure. — Carriage on Sledges — Russian 
Coach-makers. — Winter Travelling Equipment. — Presentation to the Em- 
press Alexandra. — ^Adieu to St* Petersburgh . . Page 486—524 





• Winter Roads. — Frights and Accidents. — Delays.— Freezing of the 
J>wina. — State of the Towns in the Government of Wilna. — Poet Houses. 
—We cast off our Sledges. — The Jews. — Roads to the Russian Frontiers.— 
.Kovno. — Custom-house and curious regulation respecting money. ^Cross- 
ing the Niemen. — Bonaparte and the Sinister Omen. — Frontiers of the 
Kingdom of Poland. — Appearance of the Country. — State of its Agricul- 
ture. — A French soldier's opinion of Poland. — An Apology for Grumblers. 
— Line of Retreat of the French Army.— Napoleon at Lomza. — Ostrolenza 
and Puhask. •— Approach to Warsaw. — Alore Annoyances, Political, 
Fiscal, Financial, and MedicaL — Crossing the Vistula. — Hotel de V Europe. 
—General Appearance of Warsaw. — The Streets, Squares, Churches, and 
Palaces. — Situation of the Town. — Prague.— Parallel between Warsaw 
and St. Petersburgh. — The Poles. — ^The Lieutenant du Rot Military Pa- 
rade. — ^Introduction to the Grand- duke Constantine. — His personal appear- 
ance. — His minage and mode of living. — Conduct of the King of Poland 
and Constantine towards the Poles in matters of Civil Administration. — 
Popularity of the Grand-duke with the Army. — General Fanshawe. — The 
Polish Army ..... Page 526—4^50. 



The Zameck.— Numerous and valuable Paintings, by Canaletti. — The 
Ball-room.— The Presentation Hall.— Baociarelli. — ^The old Sovereigns of 
Poland — The Hall of Assembly for the Senate and the Diet. — Radicals in 
the Diet. — ^Polish Legislators. — Pcut^on ftnre une NoHon de la Pdqgne 9 


— Liberty of Speech in doon. — Present (Government of Poland. — ^The 
Charte ConstituiUmeUe. — Polish Conspiracies. — Subjects for Melodranuw. 
— ^The National Archires. — ^The Palais de Saze and its Public Gftrdens. — 
Palace of Government. — A Jumble. — The President of the Senate. — The 
itfarieville Bazaar. — Macadam at Warsaw, and Macadam in London. — 
The Catholic Churches. — ^The Lutheran Church. — National Monuments. — 
Prince Poniatowsky. — ^The Ujazdow. — Lazienki. — Mosaic — Polish No« 
bility^ — Ch&tean of Villanov. — The University of Warsaw. — CoUeq^oQs. — 
System of Education. — Modes of electing Professors contrasted. — TJi^ 
Great Rnsso-Polish Hospital.— Dr. Florio.-~Tight Dress and Diseasea of 
the Heart. — Digression on Prussic Add. — ^The Jews. — Ton of Society. — 
Condition of the People. — Dwarfs.-r-Ministerial Ezpos6 of the State of the 

Nation, — Count Mostowski Religious Worship in Poland. — Public In- 

stmctioiL — Administration of Justice. — Pain of Death. — How Inflicted. — 
The Man-woman. — Landed Interest. — Remedy against low Prices. — Po- 
pulation of Poland. — National Manufiactures. — Internal Communication 
and Navigation. — General PoHoe. — ^Mines. — Finance. Page 661«^79. 



Departure from Warsaw^— New and excellent Road to Kalisz, through 

Socfaacxew and Lovicz. — Approach to the Frontiers of Poland. ynljiwi 

Pnbliclnstitutions and remarkable Buildings. — The Battle of 1706.— .Polish 

Table tPHoU Marche-route to the Prussian Frontiers. — Silesian Roads 

the worst in Europe. — Projected Road to Breslau. — The City of Breslau.-. 
Number of Catholic Churches.— A.n accelerated Post-waggon from Berlin.— 
Another TtMe d*H6te, — Prussian Roads and Prussian Posting.— .Line of 
Commtmication through Buntzlau, Gbrlitz, Lobau, and Bautzen.— Change 
for the better in Saxony. — ^Excellent conditio^ of the Saxon Roads. Pic- 
turesque approach to, and impresaionr'on seeing the Capital of Saxony.— 
Dresden. — An Explanation. — Plan and general Aspect of that City.— . 
Statne of Augustus in Neustadt. — The Bridge.— Mr. Russell, Marshal 
Dsvdust, and the bronze Crucifix.— Papal Dispensation for a better Diet 
during Lent. — Drowning, a capital Punishment among the Saxons^^-Pji^ 
turesque Prospect from the Bridge. — The Catholic, or Court ChapeL — The 
Brtthl Terrace, or Public Promenade. — ^View of Dresden from Neustadt..— 
Mode of Living, Lodgings, and Hotels. — Saxon Society. — T^^i ]}"|°^^ ish at 
Dresden.— Influx of Russian and Polish Families. — Doctoi^ Kreisig. — His 
Notions of Physiology. — New System of Medicine. — Hahnemann and in- 
/hutemmal Doses. — Miraculous Cure. — ^Dr. Striive. — ^Artificial Mineral 
Waters. — ^Chemistry of Nature. — Professor Cams. — His Publications and 
Collection of Comparative Anatomy. — His I>i8coveries.--Streets, Houses, 
and Vehides. — The Frauen Kirche and the &neutz Kirche. — Exposition 
of the Dead. — The Dance of Death. — Monument to Adelung. — ^The Feast 
of the Bakers. .... Page5a&-614 



The Picture Gallery. — Preliminary Ceremony for visiting that or any 
other public Collection in Dresden. — The Building. — Internal Arrange- 
ment. — Internal and external Gallery. — ^Advantages of that Arrangement. 
— Bladonna di St. Sisto, and other chef'-d''wuvret, — Battoni*8 Magdalen. — 
Facility afforded to Copyists. — St. Francesco of Corr^;gio. — Cignani. — 
Andrea del Sarto. — ^Carlo Dolce. — Dosso Dossi. — Peculiar effect of Perspec- 
tive. — Titian's Venus. — Magic of Light. — '' La Notte,** the Gem of the 
Dresden Gallery. — St. George and St. Sebastian. — ^The Doctor's Portrait. — 
Colours of Parmegiano. — The Flemish, Dutch, German, French, and 
Spanish Schools. — Alethod of classing the Pictures. — ^Engraved Gallery. — 
Sum Total. — The Rust Kammer. — The first Pistol and the last Touma- 
ment.—- Museum of Natural History. — Curious effect of Lightning. — The 
Chemnitz Oak. — The Stag Horns. — Too much Fat. — The Giant Hound 
and the Chicken Hound. — The Charger of Augustus II. — The Residenz 
Schlofts. — Gr'dne Gewolbe. — The largest Enamel. — The Great Mogul, the 
Tea Service, and the Temple of Apis, by the brothers Dinglinger. — The 
Cameo of Augustus Octavianus. — The tri-coloured Onyx. — The Treasure. 
— The Green Diamond. — Millions ! — Royal Pawning. — Napoleon at the 
great Opera of Dresden. — Contrast. — The Heights of RackniEzT^ 
Monument. — The Grosser Garten. — PiUnitz. — Sachsische Schweiz. — ^The 
Bastey. — Konigitein. — Pima.*-^nnenstein. — ^Establishment for the Treat- 
ment of Lunatics ..... Page 615 — 652 



Farewell to Dresden. — Return to Leipsig. — Christmas Fair. — Excursion 
to Halle..— Professor Meckel. — His rank as an Anatomist and Physiologist. 
— Interview with him. — Nitzsch, the Zoologist. — His Opinion of Modem 
Entomologists. — Curious Tribe of Insects. — Sprengel, the Medical His- 
torian and Botanist. — Meckel*8 Museum. — Medkel and the Council of tfaie 
« University of London. — Jubilee of Dr. Niemeyer. — Return JpJ^.fiijEaAi:«7-j»i 
^adftlDA- Goethe. — The Military and Naval Library. — Schiller^s Colc^sal 
•^' Bust, by Danneker.^ — Its Inauguration.->^inner at Madame de H. — 

, The lucky President. — Madame S , the bos bleu^ and Novel Writer. — 

Interview with Goethe. — His Opinion of the English Translation of two 
of his Works. — Faustus, by Lord F. G — Tasso, by M. Devaux. — IfeW 

Method of Teaching Modern Languages. — Thoughts on M oraTPEilosophy. 
— The Jubilee Medal. — ^An interesting Document. — Arrival at Frankfort. 
— Visit to Professor Soemmeijing. — ^Summary Account of his Museum. — 
Soemmerring and the Council of the London University. — Journey to May- 
euce. — The Statue of Guttenberg. — Fortifications. — Saarbriick. — ^Forbach. 
— ^The French Douanes — .Road to Paris, through Metz, Verdun, and 
Chalons sur 3Iame. — ^The French Capital. — Hdtel Meurice. — Presentation 
to Charles X. — Return to England . Page 65S to the end. 








I APPROACH the following subject with great diffidence 
and hesitation. On the illustrious individual now at the 
head of the Russian nation — on his personal character, and 
political principles— the entire faith and reliance of the 
European Cabinets repose, at this moment, for a conti- 
nuatiofn of that system of universal peace amongst them, 
which has been purchased at the price of so many recent 
sacrifices. Towards him the eyes of all Europe are at 
present turned. A young and powerful sovereign — full of 
health and energy — ^beloved' by ^his isubjects, to whom he is 
attached in return— ^esteemed and looked up to, as their na- 
tural leader, by one of the finest and most numerous armies 
in the world — surrounded by a galaxy of generals, whose 



names have been entwined with the laurels of the last me- 
morable war, — Nicholas the First, quits the luxuries of the 
gorgeous palaces I have described, and stands even now on 
the threshold of that Empire, between which and Russia 
there are fearful accounts to settle. On his assurances, 
therefore, that there are no ambitious views connected with 
his present actions ; on his disclaiming all desire of con- 
quest and aggrandizement, must, for a short time, depend 
the chance of undisturbed peace, or of inevitable war, 
among those friendly nations that have agreed to remain 
tranquil spectators of the events which are about to take 
place beyond the Balkansky Chain, or Bulgarian Alps. 
Fortunately those assurances have been given, as it is 
generally understood ; and by a monarch, whose political 
life, brief as it has yet been, has never belied any of those 
strict principles which in private life have, by general ac- 
knowledgment, been known to guide his conduct. 

The education which the present Emperor of Russia 
received in his youth — the example of an elder brother, 
whom all Europe recognised as an upright prince — the 
experience of passing events, added to information sought 
and obtained in foreign countries, while yet removed from 
the throne, are so many guarantees of the safety of that 
confidence which other sovereigns have placed in him. 
Were it even only his character as an eminently dutiful 
and affectionate son to a surviving parent, herself the ac- 
knowledged pattern of every virtue, Nicholas would still 
have the strongest claim to an implicit belief. But 
that prince has other and equally strong titles to the 
utmost reliance of his own subjects, and that of foreign 
nations; for both which reasons he may safely rest his 
expectations of a full approbation of his conduct. 

Nicholas the First was thirty-two years of .age on the 
7th of July last. He was born in the same year in which 

. * 


Catherine the Second closed her long and glorious reign ; 
and did not therefore, like his more fortunate brothers, 
Alexander and Constaiitine, experience the influence of 
that great mind in the care of his early education. Na^ 
ture, however, had provided him with a mother, who stood 
in le^ need than any reigning princess, of the counsels and 
asastance of others, to lead her child in the path of virtue. 
At an early age he was placed under the guidance of 
General Count Lamsdorff, an oiRcer of distinguished merit, 
who had served his sovereign with great reputation, both 
in the field, and as Governor of Courland. The Count 
had previously enjoyed a high degree of well-merited 
confidence at Court, as Cavalier de Service^ with the Grand 
Duke Constantine, during a period of ten years ; and like- 
wise as director of the first corps of cadets. He enjoyed 
the patronage of the present Empress^mother, then reign- 
ing Empress ; and it was under her direction that he con- 
ducted the education of the Grand-duke Nicholas, and that 
of his brother the Grand-duke Michael, from the time of 
the former of those two Princes completing the fourth year 
of his age. No choice could have been more fortunate. 
The qualities of the Governor's heart were precisely such 
as affectionate parents would wish to see appreciated by 
th^r diildren ; and those of his mind were strictly of that 
cast which were required to direct the studies of his illus- 
trious pupUs, under the instructions of proper masters. 
The Count is no more : he terminated his long and ho- 
nourable career, at the age of eighty-three, on the 4th 
of April last ; and from his character, as portrayed In the 
Court Gazette, it is fair to conclude, that the principles 
which he doubtless endeavoured to instil into the bosom 
of his Imperial pupil, must have been consonant with those 
which marked his own conduct through life. 

** Une integrity k toute 6preuve," says the writer, " une 

B 2 

% . 


modestie et un desinteressement rate, une yolont^ essen* 
tiellement dirig^e vers le bien, et la plus religieuse exacti- 
tude dans raocoroplissement de ses.deyoirs, tels 6taient lea 
traits distinctifs de son caract^re. Dans son int^rieur la 
simplicity de ses moeurs et de ses gouts, Pexercice constant 
de toutes les vertus privies, une sensibility exquise, ses habi- 
tudes eminemment patriarcales, auxquelles il ne derogea 
jamais, et cette am^nite bienveiUante dont Texpression se 
lisait encore dans ses traits au moment de la mort, le ren- 
daient au plus haut point venerable. Calme et resign^ 
dans ses demi^rs momens, et conservant toutes ses facult^s, 
sa mort a 6t6 celle du juste.^ 

As Nicholas grew in years, preceptors for the higher 
branches of learning were selected from aimong the most 
eminent men of the country ; and it is but justice to make 
particular mention of one of them. Monsieur Balouhiansky, 
who had the honour of instructing the Grand-duke in the 
principles of the art df government, and of practical science ; 
and the continuation of whose services Nicholas has since 
secured to himself, as Emperor, by placing him in his 
private Chancellerie in the ntuation of state-secretary. 

Too young at the time of the invasion of his country to 
take a prominent part in that war of defence, which was 
soon followed by another, and the last campaign, Nicholas 
has not had opportunities of acquiring that d^ree of ex- 
perience in warlike operations, which would be required of 
him were he intended for a mere military conqueror. But 
the art and science of military operations, without which 
experience itself is frequently of no avail, he studied 
under very able masters and veteran officers. 

In the year 1816, travelling in foreign countries was 
deemed expedient by the Grand-duke, with a view to acquits 
more enlarged notions respecting those nations which were 
acting the most conspicuous parts in Europe. Among these 


Great Britain as selected was the country which offered a 
wider field of observation to a prince desirous of infor- 
mation. *Tbe' GrandU^uke, therefore, visited England in 
November of that year : he landed at Dover, where he 
was received by the Russian Ambassador, and Colonel 
Ford, who commanded the Engineers stationed in the 
town, and who accompanied the Prince round the fortifi- 
cations of the Castle, on the heights, and through the sub- 
terraneous passages of that fortress. His first step on 
British ground was marked by a proof of liberal disposi-* 
tion. The noise of the cannon which had been firing to 
celebrate his arrival^ according to form, had frightened a 
horse that was standing in a cart at a short distance from 
the shore. The animal ran the length of some streets, 
dragging its heavy load after it, when it fell down and 
expired. The Grand-duke was passing at the time, and 
learning, on enquiry, the nature of the accident which had 
deprived an industrious man of an useful animal, insisted 
on compensating him with a sum of money far above his 
loss, of which, observed the Prince, '^ I am myself the in- 
nocent cause.'' The Qrand-duke resided in St. Alban^s 
House, in Stratford-plaee, where the Austrian Archdukes 
had been staying a short time before. He was accompa- 
nied, by General Kutusoff, Baron Nicolay, now Russian 
Ambassador at Copenhagen, Doctor now Sir William Crich- 
ton, and others. Royal carriages and footmen were placed 
at his disposal: he held levees, received the subjects of 
his Imperial brother, listened to the complaints, history, 
and petitions of the supplicants amongst those Russians 
who happened to be in London in need of assistance, and 
in all cases relieved them, either with money, or by provide 
ing, in concert with the Ambassador, for their return to 
their native country. 

A frequent and mutual intercourse was kept up during 


his residence at St. Alban^s House, between the Roya) 
Family and himself. The Grand-duke received visitft 
from the Prince Regent and his royal brothers, to whom 
he gave a grand entertainment on board a Russian frigate, 
at Woolwich. 

He rode out a great deal — ^visited many of the public 
establishments frequently accompanied by the late Sir W. 
Congreve, than whom few people were better able to explain 
their nature and objects, — mixed freely in society — and 
acquired a high degree of popularity for his affability 
and polished manners. After a residence of some weeks, 
he extended his visits to several parts of England and 
Scotland, endeavouring to make himself master of those 
peculiarities which distinguish this above all other na- 

In the following year, he married the present Empress 
Alexandra F^odorowna, then Princess Charlotta of Prussia, 
daughter of Frederic William the Third, and of the late 
Queen, whose name is highly revered in her own country 
and wherever virtue and an elevated mind are justly valued. 
With the hallowed reputation of her lamented mother, 
which preceded her to the country of her husband^ the 
present Empress carried thither her own name, already 
associated by the public voice with every noble quality 
that can embellish the fair sex, and more particularly one 
in so exalted a station. Nature too had been so lavish 
of her favours on the person of the Empress, that it is 
impossible to imagine a more striking appearance, or one 
which, with the handsome countenance of the late Queen 
of Prussia, and somewhat of that melancholy expression 
which marks the upper part of the face of her Royal 
father, unites to a stately majestic carriage so much grace 
and dignity. Of the many portraits which Mr. Dawe has 
painted of the Empress, some of which, (particularly the 


last, in her galar^lress,) possess great merit as pictures, I 
think the palm is due to that which has been beautifully 
engraved by Mr. Wright, and which represents her Ma- 
jesty sitting, playfully entertaining her two eldest chil- 
dren, the hereditary Grand-duke, and the Grand-ducbess 
Maria. The artist seems to have seized, in this instance, 
not only the lineaments of the face, but those of the mind 
of his illustrious original. Of this most amiable princess, 
the Emperor is represented to be dotingly fond, and with 
her he leads an extremely domesticated life, although sur- 
rounded by all the cares of so vast an empire. He is fre- 
quently seen abroad with her, without any of that attendant 
pomp and splendour, which are perhaps necessary pageants' 
with less popular sovereigns ; and both are known to devote 
mach parental care to the education of the numerous chil- 
dren with which their union has been blessed. Of these, 
five survive ; namely, Alexander Nicholaevitch, the here- 
ditary Grand-duke, bom in 1818; Maria Nicholajevna 
Grand-duchess, born in 1819 ; Olga Nicholajevna Grand- 
duchess, born in 18S2 ; Alexandra Nicholajevna Grand- 
duchess, born in 18^; and lastly, Constantine Nicho- 
laevitch Grand-duke, who was bom in September 1827^ 
a few weeks before our arrival at St. Peter sburgh. 
The hereditary Grand-duke is placed under the super- 
intendance of General Ouschakofi^, one of the Aid-de- 
eamps-general of the Emperor, assisted by Colonel Morder, 
and receives instructions from Monsieur Joukovsky, one 
of the most distinguished literary characters in Russia. 
It is remarkable, that the three Grand-duchesses have 
Englisb nurses attached to their establishment. The 
hereditary Grand-duke is a very fine-looking child, 
strongly resembling his father, high spirited, and, it is said, 
of the most prominng disposition. With such a domes- 
tic minage as distinguishes the present Imperial family of 


Russia, it is impossible not to expect from the children every 
thing that is flattering to the prospects of that country, 
and, we may add, of Europe ; for the destinies of all nations 
must necessarily be more or less interested in the question — 
who is to wield the resources of that extensive empire. 
The hereditary Grand-duke, who had been appointed 
Colonel of a regiment of Hussars from his earliest age, 
was named by the Emperor, during our stay in the capital. 
Ataman of all the Cossack troops ; on which occasion the 
Court Gazette published the Imperial rescript, addressed to 
General Eouteinikoff, commanding those forces, in which the 
Emperor desires that ofiicer to communicate the nomination 
*^ aux braves troupes du Don, qui vous sont confiees, 
persuade qu'elles y verront un nouveau gage de la re- 
connaissance et de la bienveillance que je leur porte pour 
les services distingu^s, qu'*elles ont rend us d la patrie, et 
pour leur fid^Iit^ au trone surlequel j'ai lieu de compter 
d'autant plus, que des le commencement de mon r^gne, 
elles ont donnes dans la guerre actuelle contre les Persans, 
les preiives les plus brillantes de leur d^vouement et de 
leur bravoure." The Emperor also declared his pleasure 
that the Grand-duke should be considered as chief of 
the regiment of the Ataman, to be henceforth called 
the Regiment of Cossacks of his Highness the hereditary 
Grand-duke. In due time, the felicitations of the Cossack 
troops stationed in the Oural, and those of the Don, were 
forwarded to th^ newly elected Ataman, to which the 
Grand-duke replied by addressing an appropriate rescript 
to the respective Generals. The Prince is brought up, 
both in a domestic and military point of view, in the 
strictest discipline, and constantly under the eyes of his 
parents, and the vigilant and intelligent superintendance 
of the Empress-mother. He frequently walks or drives 
about town, attended by a companion of about his own 


age, who is educated with him, and is the son of a gene- 
ral oflScer. I have more than once seen him in the 
severest weather dressed in his simple uniform, accom- 
panied by his playmate, driving a two-horse sledge^ 
with none of the fur trappings which other people deem it 
necessary to wear as a protection against a cold of several 
degrees below the freezing point, blooming with health, and 
full of gaiety, i*eceiving with a pleasing smile the saluta- 
tions and marks of respect which, when recognised during 
the rapidity of his course, every class of persons seem 
delighted in paying to their future Emperor. 

At all times the example set by the superior classes in 
the exercise of parental and domestic duties, in the display 
of conjugal attachment, and the practice of private virtues, 
has had a beneficial influence on the other ranks of society. 
But when such an example is to be met with in the family 
of the Sovereign, the benefit of its influence over every 
class of his subjects must be tenfold ; and that such is 
the case in Russia at the present moment, and particularly 
among the higher circles in St. Petersburgh, I have had 
frequent opportunities of ascertaining. 

Nor is the individual conduct of the Emperor himself 
without its good efiect on the minds of his people. His 
application to business is most regular. The aflairs of the 
state alone seem to engross his attention, and it is said that 
he seldom gives an hour to pleasure, which might have been 
better devoted to the welfare of his subjects. He rises early, 
and spends some time in transacting military matters. Part 
of this consists in receiving, as I before stated. Count Di- 
ebitch, the chief of the £tat-Major, who daily waits on his 
Majesty from seven o'clock till nine, and reports the state of 
the army during the preceding day, and receives his Ma- 
jesty ^s commands. After breakfast he either attends the 
council, or receives his Ministers daily ; each of whom has 


his appointed days and hours for waiting on the Emperor. 
He has on some occasions attended the senate ; and it 
was reported, while we were at St. Petersburgh, that ha- 
ving heard that the Senators had been in the habit ^of 
assembling very late, a practice which caused considerable 
delay in public business, his Majesty called early one day 
at the House of the Senate, and finding none of its mem- 
bers assembled, simply desired it to be made known to 
them, that the Emperor had attended to transact business 
at such an hour. From that time th^ Senators took care 
to be at their post with greater punctuality. At one oVlock 
he generally attends the parade. In the winter this takes 
place under cover, unless the weather be both fine and 
mild, in which case, as well as in the summer months, 
it is held in the great square, in front of the Winter 
Palace, or in the Champ de Mars. When it is under 
shelter that the parade is to take place, the exercise- 
house, belonging to the Ch&teau St. Michel, already men- 
tioned, is the building selected. The troops are coUected 
within it, and the general officers of the garrison of St. 
Petersburgh, or holding situations in the capital, make 
a point of attending. The foot and horse guards dis- 
mounted, form the mass of the troops reviewed. It was 
on the occasion of one of these parades, that I first had 
an opportunity of seeing the Emperor. On the 15th of 
November, a Te Deum having been sung at the Winter 
Palace for the capture of Erivan, a more than usually bril-* 
liant parade was expected. The day was exceedingly fine, 
though excessively cold : notwithstanding which I placed 
myself> with three friends, wrapt up in our cloaks, outside 
of the exercise-house, to witness the arrival of all the offi- 
cers, who returned from the religious ceremony at the pa- 
lace in order to attend the parade, and with whom the Em- 
peror himself was expected. There were about two hun- 
dred people present, very quiet, well-behaved, and silent. 


The gate of the exercifie-house was guarded by four gen- 
darmes on foot. Three or four officers of .the police were 
present, and an aid de camp de service paraded outside to 
and fro. 

About half past one o^clock, when the firing of the guns 
had ceased, which announced the performance of the cere- 
mony at the palace, officers of all ranks, and of all regi- 
ments and corps, infantry as well as cavalry, began to ar- 
rive, and continued to do so till two o'clock, some in sledges 
drawn by magnificefft horses, others in handsome close 
carriages. On alighting they threw off their outside mi- 
litary cloak, and exhibited their ribbons, and stars, and 
decorations, over their green, white, and scarlet uniforms. 
Among them I recognised General Jomini, who abandoned 
the fortunes of France to serve Alexander,- and has a pub- 
lic situation at St. Petersburgh. His person looked so 
very different from the well-fed, and well-looking stout 
generals of the country, that one could plainly see, in the 
care-worn and hollow lines of his physiognomy, a French 
general of division, notwithstanding his Russian uniform 
and brilliant orders. During the arrival of these officers, 
the regiment of the Chevaliers Guardes^ mounted on bay 
horses, dressed in white uniforms, with black helmets and 
cuirasses, and carrying the Persian standards, defiled out- 
side of the ground, preceded by a whole band of trumpet- 
ers. As the moment of the approach of the Emperor was 
near at hand, the officers of the police reminded some among 
the crowd to puU off their hats on his arrival ; and the aid- 
de-camp before alluded to, after looking stedfastly at all 
those in the front row, addressed me in particular. One 
of my Russian friends having informed me that the object 
of his inquiry was whether I had any petition for the 
Emperor, I replied to the officer in French, that I was 
a stranger, and had no petition to present ; upon which he 
ap6logized in the same language, observing that as aid 



de camp de service it was his duty to receive all petitions 
intended for the. Emperor on such occasions, in order that 
he might present them immediately to His Majesty. 

Although I was not aware, at the time, that I looked so 
very much like a petitioner, as to cause me to be selected 
among the multitude; yet I was particularly delighted at 
this trifling incident happening to myself, because it afford- 
ed me, at once, the practical knowledge of the fact, that the 
Emperor is accessible on these occasions to the supplications 
of his subjects, and even strangers residing in his dominions, 
with a facility which is not to be met with in other coun- 
tries where the Sovereign is less powerful than the law. 
. A gentle buzz now ran through the people assembled, 
and presently a light, elegant sledge, drawn by a spirited 
black horse, which a richly costumed, fine^looking, young 
Isvostchick was urging to. its full speed, entered the court 
by the grand gate, sliding in silent rapidity over the well- 
smoothed snow, and conveying the two Imperial Brothers, 
Nicholas and the Grand-duke Michael, who passed before 
us, and suddenly stopped opposite the entrance of the 
exercise-house, within two feet of which I had been permit- 
ted to stand. The same aid de camp de service took their 
cloaks after they alighted ; and I had then an opportunity 
of observing the striking personal appearance of. these two 
princes, whose countenance, stature, and figure claimed for 
them a decided superiority over every handsome officer we 
had seen that morning, or that we observed on subsequent 
occasions among the several regiments of the guards. No 
demonstration of any kind took place on the part of the 
persons present outside, except dofiing their hats; but the 
Sovereign, on the folding gates being thrown open, which ex- 
hibited to our view, for an instant, the most brilliant display 
of military pageantry I had ever beheld, was received with 
three tremendous roulades of drums and trumpets, upon the 


ceasingof which, a bugle band struck up the inspiring anthem 
of Old England, God save the King, and changed to Ood 
save the Emperor, after the return of Alexander from Paris, 
by the Poet Joukovsky. The gates were then closed, and 
the parade proceeded ; but as civilians are never allowed 
to enter on such occasions, we quietly retired to our re- 
spective occupations. 

This daily, or almost daily intercourse which his Ma- 
jesty keeps up, with all the officers and men stationed in 
St. Petersburgh, (since regiments are of course paraded in 
turn), must have an excellent effect, and be productive of 
great advantage ; for the Emperor inspects every thing, 
inquires into the minutest details, examines the regimental 
uniforms of the privates, addresses words of encouragement 
to those who are favourably reported, converses with the 
officers of all ranks, praises, blames, or admonishes, as he sees 
occasion ; and thus adds to the scene of military evolu- 
tion and discipline the interest of a riunion de families 
where the chief, uniting in turn, the characters of sove- 
reign, commander, and father, exerts those self-influences 
to maintain order and subordination, to render the ties 
between the soldier and his officer, and between both 
and their sovereign, more indissoluble, because more che- 
rished and respected. MQitary parades, however, are not 
always held within closed doors ; and I am told by some 
young English residents, that during the summer season 
one of the finest and most striking military spectacles is 
the ** Grande Parade," which takes place on certain days 
on the Champ de Mars, Bn extensive square, to which I 
have before alluded, and at one end of which stands the 
bronze colossal statue of Souvoroff, the conqueror of Suchet 
and Macdonald in Italy, and surnamed Italiysky from 
that circumstance. Oh some of these occasions the Emperor 
has attended on horseback, accompanied by at least twenty 


generals, and eighty superior officers, at the head of 
fifty squadrons of cavalry, twenty-five battalions of infan- 
try, and ten companies of artillery, forming altogether 
an army of more than ^,000 men, which perform every 
possible variety of evolution, in the presence of several 
thousands of spectators. On such occasions as these the 
Emperor is sure to be received with boisterous accla- 

After the parade his Majesty generally returns home, 
and if there are to be any private presentations to him, 
it is before his dinner that they take place; otherwise 
he either walks or rides out alone or accompanied by the 
£mpress. He is very fond of riding on horseback, but 
he also frequently goes out with his consort in a French 
cabriolet, which he drives himself. I have likewise seen 
him walking up and down that magnificent quay on the 
Neva, called the English Line, either alone or accompa- 
nied by some minister or general officer; and I under- 
stand that in fair weather, and when the Empress is in 
good health, her Majesty often accompanies him on these 
excursions. On such occasions it is the etiquette on the 
part of persons who meet them, to stand still until they 
have passed, pulling their hats off, when the Emperor inva- 
riably returns the salutation d la militairey by putting the 
back of the hand up to his hat. With all persons who are 
known to him, he will occasionally stop and converse with 
great affability and without reserve. 

The dinner-hour is between three and four o'clock; 
after which his Majesty spends part of the day with his 
family and children. The evening brings its own labours 
and occupations. Ministers are received, or the Emperor 
attends to business "^in his private cabinet with his own 
secretary ; but on fixed days, at eight o'clock, he ordets 
a particular minister to bring his portC'-feuiUe, and will 


remain with him till ten^ going methodically through, and 
dispatching an infinite variety of business, so as to clear 
away every sort of arrear, and make himself master of 
the different subjects of each department. The strict 
observance of engagements which his Majesty is known 
to expect on every occasion, tends materially to facilitate 
every operation, and serves as a lesson to his subjects, 
that without punctuality in all the affairs and transactions 
of life, talent, rank, nay even a high character, are rendered 
useless to society. 

The Imperial family retires early to rest. I have known 
some distinguished persons who have had the honour <^ 
being invited to the presence of the Emperor and Empress 
in the evening, come away at ten o'clock, the hour at 
which it was understood that their Majesties retired for 
the night. How else, indeed, could any human frame 
support for any length of time the toils, cares, and anx- 
ieties which commence with these exalted persons at 
sunrise, and continue all day without int^mission? 

Not satisfied with the ordinary routine of affairs, Ni- 
cholas, who seems to be the most indefatigable and active 
Sovereign now reigning, and whose occupations are gene* 
rally of a serious natui'e, having the good and happiness of 
bis people in view, has traced out to himself other tasks and 
other duties. One of the additional burthens which he has 
voluntarily imposed on himself, is that of looking over the 
reports and returns of every arrest and imprisonment that 
take {dace in his empire, as well as of the state of the prisons, 
according to a formula which he has himself prescribed, and 
ordered to be filled up and regularly forwarded to him in 
a direct manner. In these returns, the name of each pri* 
soner or individual arrested, the nature of the crime, and the 
length of time during which he has been imprisoned, either 
before or after trial, must be accurately entered. Judg- 


ing from this information, his Majesty has frequently 
given orders for bringing persons to a speedy trial who had ' 
been long in prison, and others to be released who appeared 
to have suffered long, or to have been too severely punish- 
ed. In some cases, he has ordered the sentence either to be 
revoked, or its severity mitigated, in consequence of cer- 
tain extenuating circumstances which appeared on the face 
of the information contained in the statement. It is not ne- 
cessary to remark how much good, in a country like Rus- 
sia, as yet deprived of the great blessing of a unifojrm, in- 
violable, and intelligible code of criminal laws, so praise- 
worthy an undertaking on the part of an all-powerful mo- 
narch, must produce. In order fully to appreciate the 
great benefit conferred by the Sovereign on his subjects by 
such an arrangement, an Englishman has only to bear in 
mind the inefficient state of the Tribunals in Russia, which 
the meditated Reform has not yet reached— the indefinite 
nature of the written laws and multiplied ukases — and 
above all, the immense distances of some of the provinces 
from the source of justice and mercy. All these circum- 
stances are frequently calculated to embarrass, if not to 
thwart, the efforts of every prisoner, or his friends, made in 
hopes of proving his innocence ; unless means be at hand to 
carry the suit to the foot of the throne. Whether or not, 
inconveniencies have arisen from such a system, it is not 
for me to assert, who have had no opportunity of judging 
for myself on the subject ; but it is probable that the So- 
vereign had in view the future prevention of the possibi- 
lity of all such abuses in criminal matters, when he adopt- 
ed the practice of actually inquiring into them himself, 
until the new projected code of laws, founded upon prin- 
ciples consonant with the general feelings of the more ad- 
vanced nations in Europe, shall have been promulgated in 
the empire. Oppression under such an arrangement can* 


not well be exercised by ill-disposed persons in power, in 
distant governments. Every prisoner will feel that his 
case will be sure to become known to, and fall under the 
eye of the Sovereign ; and in proportion to his innocence 
will he derive courage to support his present sufferings, 
from the prospect of being at no distant period, declared 
guiltless. In such a system too, another great branch of 
public benefit is involved : the Emperor himself, through 
the task he has voluntarily undertaken, becomes acquaint- 
ed with the existing forms of criminal justice in his do- 
minions-^ will soon see how the existing systems work, and 
in what they are defective — can point out to bis ministers 
improvements which they might not have ventured to sug- 
gest — or command such inquiries to be set on foot, as will 
ultimately lead to improvements and satisfactory results. 

I have shown the present Emperor of Russia in his 
character of Sovereign, Chief of the Army, and Supreme 
Judge ; as a son, a husband, and a father ; and it would 
not be difficult to exhibit him in that of a benevolent 
Prince and patron of the liberal arts. But my object is 
not to frame a panegyric on Nicholas, that being a task 
which abler hands must perform, and contemporaries will 
approve ; yet have I known, even during my short inter- 
course with Russia and Russian subjects, enough to lead 
me to the conclusion, that in both the latter capacities the 
Emperor has equally strong claims to the gratitude of 
bi^ people. The munificence with which he rewards ser- 
vices to the State is so generally known, that it would be 
superfluous to enter here into any particular details in il- 
lustration of it. Not only by titles, rank, and promotion, 
does he reward those services, but by still more interesting 
marks of his satisfaction contained in the several rescripts 
which he publicly addresses to those who have deserved 
them. The recent examples of this, furnished on the 



occaaon of the Persian war and the battle of Navarino, not 
to mention others of a somewhat more distant date, suffici- 
ently prove his liberal disposition. Not only Count Paske- 
vitch, the Commander-in-chief of the Army, who ex- 
tended the limits of Russia to the banks of the Araxes, 
within view of the celebrated MounI Ararat, into the in- 
terior of the then territory of Persia^ and who was made a 
Count of the Empire, had other honours conferred upon 
him; but every officer who distinguished himself in that war 
experienced the munificence of his Sovereign. I was still 
at St. Petersburgh when the news of the battle of Nava- 
rino arrived, both from Odessa and by the way of Italy, 
and witnessed the unfeigned joy which was manifested by 
the superior classes of society, and military officers of the 
highest rank at that event. Unlike the French, whose 
contemporary journalists attributed the whole merit of the 
transaction to their own commander^ Admiral De Rigny, 
^' k qui,'' says a French paper, ^^ I'Europe est redevable 
d'^un si beau triomphe^XOt the Russians appeared to me to 
feel more like Englishmen on that occasion, and to talk of 
nothing else but the consummate skill, promptitude, coolness, 
and bravery, of Codrington and his fleet.^ ^^ Voil^ encore 
une fois les Anglais de Nelson,^ was the general observation 
to me; " quelle marine glorieuse !" and then inquiry after 
inquiry followed as to who the Admiral was, under whom 
he had fought, and on what other occasions he had dis- 
tinguished himself. The information I gave in answer 
seemed to delight them as much as if he had been one of 
their own officers, and they listened with great satisfaction 
to my account of the masterly manner in which that gallant 
officer had conducted himself when commanding a squar 
dron detached from the fleet of Sir E. Pellew, during an 
eventful period of the Peninsular war, on the Catalonian 
coast, and in which fleet I had the honour of serving. At 


the same time, they appeared not to be unmindful of the 
services of their own nayal commander at Navarino, and 
spoke with becoming pride of the share which the Russian 
fleet had taken in the triumph of that day. The Emperor 
partook of the general satisfaction, and evinced his admi- 
ration of the Englishr Admiral's conduct by conferring the 
Older of St. George of the second class upon him, the most 
distinguished order in Russia, and limited to Commander-- 
in-chief, on gaining a 'general action, against an enemy 
commanded likewise by a Commander-in-chief. This 
distinction was accompanied by a most flattering letter 
from the Emperor himself, in which the following remark- 
able words occurred : — " La marine Russe s^honore d'*avoir 
obtenu votre suffrage devant Navarin." To his own com- 
mander, the Imperial recompense was promotion from a 
Rear to a Vice-Admiral, and the knighthood of the third 
class of St. George, while to the French Admiral the rib« 
bon of the order of St Alexander Nevskoi was forwarded. 
As an encouragement to other officers. His Majesty is 
in tbe habit of publicly expressing, by a rescript, to the 
principal grand officers of the Court, his approbation of 
their conduct, whenever by the accounts, which he expects 
them to present every year, of the manner in which they 
have disposed of the money of the civil list confided to their 
care, they appear to have performed their duty with fidelity, 
or to have husbanded the resources of their department. 
Tlius we find him addressing a most gratifying rescript in 
April last, accompanied with a present in diamonds to his 
Marechal de la Cour, and the Master of the Horse, for having 
in tbe course of the previous year effected a saving in their 
respective offices, the first of one million of roubles, and the 
second of six hundred thousand roubles, on the sums yearly 
allotted fidr the service of their respective departments. The 
same mark of approbation is bestowed on the governors of 

c 2 


towns and provinces; and these expressions of Imperial 
satisfaction are frequently accompanied by an appropriate 

Within the last two months the Count Nesselrode, Count 
Eotchoubey, president of the Council, Prince Volkonsky, 
Minister of the Household, Monsieur Naryschkine, Mare- 
chal de la Cour, and Prince Dolgorouky, Grand Master 
of the Horse, as well as Count Pahlen, who exercised the 
functions of Governor-general of the provinces of New Rus- 
sia and Bessarabia, during the absence of Count Michel Wo- 
ronzow, have each received a gratifying testimony of appro- 
bation from their Imperial Master. When the individual, 
whose conduct the Emperor is solicitous of rewarding, is in 
a situation to be benefited by more substantial marks of ap- 
probation, Nicholas, with a peculiar delicacy of feelings, has 
bestowed on him a pecuniary remuneration. Thus in the 
V case of the Grand Master of his Court, Baron D'Albedyll, 
who directs the office of intendance of the Court, the 
Emperor addressed to him a most flattering rescript, ex- 
pressive of his satisfaction at the economical spirit evinced 
by that ofiicer in the course of his administration of 18S7, 
concluding with these words :— 

*^ Desirant vous donner un temoignage de ma recon- 
naissance et r^compenser la longue et honorable carri^re de 
vos services, Je vous ai assigne sur la tresorerie Imperiale 
une pension de dix mille roubles en sus de votre traitement 

After this, and the consideration of the many pecuniary 
gifts given by the reigning Sovereign to different classes of 
individuals, each for some peculiar merit, and many of 
which I have quoted in the course of the present work, it 
will not again be just to repeat: that public services are 
very cheaply rewarded by the Imperial Family of Russia, 
with rings and trinkets. 


Nor have the more humble classes of society been over- 
looked by his Majesty, when by their conduct they have 
deserved the same marks of his approbation ; for, in several 
instances, he has granted those decorations which in Russia 
are valued as proofs of merit as well as reward, to in- 
dustrious citizens and merchants, as was the case in 1826 
when he conferred the order of St. Anne, of the second 
class, on the Maire of St. Petersburgh, and the same order 
of the third class to three merchants of the first and second 
guild, for their zeal and devotion in affording assistance 
to the unfortunate who suffered during the inundation of 
November, 1824. 

Another strong proof of the earnest disposition of Ni- 
cholas to reward irreproachable conduct and faithful ser- 
vices both in dvil and military life, is to be found in 
his creation of a new Order of Merit, which he established 
on the 2Sd of August, 1827, the day of his Coronation, 
under the name of " Marqiie (Thonneur pour le service 
irreprochable," to which a pension is attached, that ex- 
tends (for a limited period of time) to the widow also of the 
person who obtains that- distinction. To this mark of 
honour, every person, no matter of what rank or condition, 
belonging to the military or civil service, can aspire. It 
consists in a silver gilt buckle, of a square form and cLjour^ 
having in the centre a crown of oak-leaves, surrounding 
the cyphers, denoting the number of years of irreproachable 
conduct during service. No one who has been tried either 
before the civil or military tribunals — who has incurred 
the displeasure of his superiors even once, in consequence 
of neglect, idleness, or any offence, contra bonos mores, or 
who has given proof of incapacity — or whose honesty has 
been suspected — or whose behaviour to his inferiors has 
been harsh, or to his superiors disrespectful — no one who 
has delayed presenting the accounts of his office, without 


any apparent valid excuse, or in whoee accounts evidence 
of irregularity shall have appeared — no one« in fine, who is 
accused of being a bad citizen, a n^ligent father, a dis- 
obedient SOD, can be admitted on the list of candidacies for, 
or aspire to, the enjoym^it of such an honourable distinc- 
tion. The buckle is to be worn suspended at the'button-hole 
to the ribbon of the Order of St. Greorge by the military,- 
and to that of the Order of St. Vladimir by the civilians. 

Persuaded diat the best mode of securing the civiliza* 
tion, and with it the happiness of his subjects, is to promote 
moral education among them, the present Emperor has not 
only followed the steps of his late Imperial Brother in sup- 
porting and even multiplying the metms of forwarding that 
object, but has, in a solemn manifesto, issued on the me- 
morable occasion of the revolt of 18£5 against his person 
and government, recorded his sentiments on that important 
subject, which are worthy of a Sovereign reigning in these 
enlightened times. 

^^ Ce nVst, certes, point aux progr^s de la civilization 
mais. k la vanity, qui ne produit que le descBuvrement et le 
vuide de Tesprit, mais au defaut d'instruction reelle qu^il 
faut attribuer cette license de la pens^e, cette fougue des 
passions, ces demi-connoissances si confuses et si funestes, 
ce penchant aux theories extremes et aux visions poli- 
tiques, qui commencent par demolir et finissent par 
perdre. En vain le gouvemement fera-t-il de genereux 
efforts — en vain s^epuisera-t-il en sacrifices ; si Teducation 
domestique ne seconde son action et ses vues, si eile ne 
verse dans les cceurs les germes de la morale.'^ 

Nicholas the First, is placed at the head of one of those 
governments which have been called despotic ; but let us 
hear the language of a monarch so situated on the subject 
of reform and improvement, and judge by it of what Rus- 
sia, and Europe^ have to look to during his reign. *^ Dans 


line telle organization de V6Uit,^ observes the Emperor in 
the same manifesto, ^* chacun pent se fier k la solidit^ de 
Tordre, k la garantie des biens et des personnes, et tran* 
qoille sur le present porter sur Pavenir un regard plein 
d'eq>erance, ^Ce n'est point par des enterprises t^m^raires 
et toujours destructives, c^est d'en haut, c'est par degr^s 
que 8*op^rent les vraies ameliorations, que se comblent ks 
lacunes, que sejreforment les abus. Dans cette marche 
de perfectionnement graduel, tout sage d^sir du mieux, 
toute pens6e tendante k Taffermissement des lois, k la 
propi^tion des v^ritables lumi^res, au d6veloppement 
de Pindustrie qui nous sera communique par les voies 
legates ouvertes k tous, ne pourra q'^^tre accueiilie par 
nous avec gratitude; car nous ne formons, nous ne pouvons 
former, d^antre voeu que oelui de voir notre patrie atteindre 
le plus baut point de prosperity et de gloire, qui lui scHt 
niarqu6 par la Divine Providence.^ 

The benevolent disposition of Nicholas to which I have 
made allurion, is admitted on all hands to be conspicuous* 
Scarcdy a month passes in which a proof of it does not 
come to the knowledge of the public, and many of his acts 
of generosity^ as I have been informed by a person in- 
timately connected with the household of his Majesty, 
never reach the public ear. In January last, he signalized 
the beginning of the year by ordering the house in which 
the late Empress Elizabeth died at BelefF, to be pur- 
chased at his own expense, and converted into an asylum 
for twenty-four poor widows, who are to be maintained 
henceforward at the charge of his privy-purse, filling up 
the vacancies as soon as they occur. 

The first anniversary of his coronation, 2Sd August, 
18S7; (O. S.,) was marked by a manifesto in which, 
taking into consideration the situation of a great num- 
ber of persons resident both in town and country, who 


were some years in arrear with Govemmeiit in respect to 
the payment of direct and indirect taxes and excise duties 
on spirits, which it had been represented, could not be 
exacted without creating great distress among the defaul- 
ters, the Emperor ordered that the entries of all such ar« 
rears, up to the date of the manifesto, should be erased 
from the registers, and no demand made for them from the 
defaulters, who it appeared had all been placed in that 
predicament by untoward circumstances over which they 
had no control. 

In visiting one of the civil hospitals at St. Petersburgh, 
it fell to my lot to see another object of Nicholas's bene- 
volent disposition. This was a very interesting young girl, 
the daughter of a day-labourer in indigent circumstances, 
and who, owing to a peculiarly severe disease, had at the 
age of seven years been subjected to one of the boldest and 
most painful operations of surgery, by which her life was 
saved. On Dr. Arendt, the operator, reporting the case to 
the Emperor, his Majesty proceeded to the ward in the 
hospital to see the child, assigned for her use the sum of 
one thousand roubles, and made provision for her being 
placed in a public school at the expense of the Crown. 
. The following trait of Nicholas, though of a different 
description, deserves to be recorded. I had it from the 
best authority. It is known that the Persians have, of 
late years, endeavoured to introduce the European tactics 
into their armies ; yet, with so little success, that the Rus- 
sian troops opposed to them have found little difference 
in their mode of fighting. Some months before the cap- 
ture of Erivan by the Russians, some hundreds of these 
Perso-European soldiers were made prisoners, when the 
Emperor desired that a certain number of them should be 
sent to St. Petersburgh, where he had them dressed in the 
uniform of one of his regiments of guards, and ordered that 


tbey might be trained and instructed like them. He even 
took care that their clothing should be of better materials, 
and their food of the best kind, and, from time to time, his 
Majesty himself would go to see them manoeuvre in order 
to judge of their progress. When he found them well 
trained, he sent them back to the Shah, with this message: 
" Tell your Sovereign, that if he really wishes to introduce 
the modern European system of tactics and military disci- 
pline into his armies, he may safely take you as models -^ 
and that he may form as many such as he pleases, by ap- 
plying to his immediate neighbours, instead of employing 
some renegade officers, or runaway adventurers from distant 
countries. '^ 

In regard to the patronage which he has extended to 
literature and the liberal arts, it would be an endless task 
to record all that he has already done in that respect. 
New and favourable regulations for protecting the pro- 
perty of authors, pensions to those among them who are 
disabled, either through illness or age, rewards both pecu- 
niary and honorary to those who are still in activity, assist- 
ance in money both to writers and artists who would other- 
vise have had no means of bringing forward their produc* 
tions, prizes granted out of his private treasury for useful 
discoveries, annual sums assigned to literary and scientific 
institutions, whether of a public or a private nature, with a 
view to encourage their respective pursuits : these are a 
few of the methods by which this Sovereign has already 
shown his disposition to foster knowledge and the fine arts 
in his dominions. 

Practical illustrations on these various points crowd 
upon my memory at the mere allusion to the facts; but 
I can only afford space for the special mention of Nicholases 
act of splendid liberality towards the celebrated historian 
Karamzine, who on account of his health was about to 


leave Russia for a milder climate, and to wh(Hn as a recom- 
pense for literary services to Russia, the Emperor granted 
a pension of 50,000 roubles, {£. 2,273 ster.) per annum ! 
revertible to his widow after his death, and after her to 
his children, until the sons have entered the service, or 
the daughters are married. In what other countries are 
authors of an equal merit to Karamzine and their families 
80 rewarded? Nor was the very flattering rescript by 
which this gift was accompanied, a less interesting mark 
of Imperial favour towards the historian. 

But the great traits which have stamped the diaracter 
of Nicholas on the very threshold of the empire, as an 
upright prince and a brave man, and which future histo- 
rians will know how to appreciate, are his conduct re- 
specting the succession to the throne and his behaviour 
on the 26th of December 1826. Full of becoming respect 
for the organic law of succession established in his country, 
Nicholas would neither allow the existence of a private 
document, which had hitherto been kept a secret, and 
might, for aught he knew, have been forced from his 
elder brother; nor the expression of the opinion of the 
senate, inclining to supersede the natural right of the law- 
ful inheritor of the crown — to disturb the regular succession 
to the Imperial power, but on the contrary was the first 
to set the example of swearing allegiance to Constantine, 
to whom he despatched messengers to crave his presence 
and to ascend the throne. At last, when by a formal act 
of that brother he found himself invested with the Imperial 
authority, firmness of character and public duty forbade 
him to listen to the propositions of those who, on the day 
of his being proclaimed Emperor, refused to make obei- 
sance and declare allegiance to him. On that occasion 
Nicholas, regardless of the weapons levelled at his person 
by a misguided soldiery, who had already assassinated a 


fidthful servant and favourite general by his side, insisted 
on addressing them, and endeavoured to bring them to 
reason by persuasion and humane counsels, ere he suffered 
martial law to make an example of them. That was a 
fearful moment, and many trembled for the safety of the 
Emperor, and none more so than the much attached and 
alarmed Alexandra Feodorowna, who has not, to this day, 
quite recovered from the effects produced on her delicate 
nerves, by the prolonged agony of dreadful suspense during 
several hours of perilous adventure to her sovereign. 

The short period of not quite three years since his 
Majesty b^an to reign has been marked by a number 
of events, which ahxie would be sufficient to mark the 
history of his time. A generous contest with a brother 
respecting the succession to the throne ; a conspiracy against 
his person, crushed as soon as exploded; a treaty with 
the two greatest powers in Europe to uphold the inde* 
pendence of Greece ; the invasion of Russia by the Per- 
sians in 18%; a victory near Elizabethpol in the same year ; 
the taking of the fortresses of Abbas Abad, Sardan Abad, 
Erivan, Tauris, and a great extent of territory in 18^7 ; 
the destruction of the Turco-Egyptian fleet at Navarino ; 
Peace with the Persians in 18S8 ; war with Turkey, and 
the first triumph over them a month after, have all taken 
place in this brief interval. What other destinies await 
him ! 

Such is Niohdas the First, the son of Maria Feo- 

Of this higfaly-endowed Princess, whose name will be 
looked upon by all future ages as one of the most honour- 
able in the pages of Russian history, it is impossible to give 
a just representation in the short epitome of the Impe- 
rial family which I have prescribed to myself. The full 
measure and weight of biography are required to do justice 


to the distinguished talents^ the virtues, and all the qua- 
lifications of an amiable woman, which belong to this 
exalted personage. On such a subject, every Russian 
and every traveller has but one opinion. In speaking of 
the Empress-mother, one is not afraid of being taxed with 
fulsome exaggeration ; for it has long ago been admitted 
that all that can be said of her must necessarily fall short 
of her deserts. She is an honour to the country which 
gave her birth, and a blessing to the country she has 

Maria Feodorowna was the daughter of Frederic Eu- 
gene, Duke of Wiirtemberg, and was bom in 1759. In 
1776, she was married to the Grand-diike Paul, son of 
Catherine the Second and Peter the Third, that young 
Prince having, shortly before, lost his first consort Natalia 
Alexievna, Princess of Hesse Darmstadt, who died without 
issue. At the time of his first marriage, Paul was little 
more than eighteen years old ; and but twenty-two years of 
age when he was united to the Princess Sophia Dorothea 
Augusta of Wiirtemberg, who was then only seventeen years 
of age, and changed her name to that which she bears at 
present, agreeably to the custom of that country. 

She is represented by contemporary observers of that 
time, as having made a great impression in the capital of 
Russia ; and the same remarks are found in subsequent 
writers, when giving an account of her travels through dif- 
ferent parts of Europe, in company with Paul, under the 
assumed name of the Comtesse du Nord. She is there pic- 
tured in the prime of womanhood, and in the full glow of 
beauty, combining with a truly noble figure a striking and 
commanding physiognomy. But the fair proportions of 
external form, which deservedly excited admiration among 
those who had the honour of approaching her, were not 
the only themes for the eulogiums. with which the mention 


of her name, even in those times, was associated ; for the 
Countess was accomplished in mind as well as body, and 
possessed grace, learning, and acute observation. 

Only one writer, who lately favoured the world with her 
recollections of the niaiseries at the court of Marie Antou 
nett€y has ventured to mix a little ill-judged satire with her 
laudatory account of the' personal appearance of, and im- 
pression made by the Camtesse du Nord^ when she was pre- 
sented at the French Court, in May 1782. Speaking of 
that event, Madame de Campan pretends that, notwith- 
standing her striking and handsome figure, and her learning, 
which, observes the writer, elle faisait connoitre peut-itre 
avec irop de confiancey the illustrious stranger had not, at 
first, obtained with the Queen that success which Paul had 
obtained with the King — nay more, that the Queen had 
positively been intimidated by her presence, and that after 
retiring to her closet she had expressed herself to her 
confidante in a manner not quite flattering to the visiter. 
The reigning Empress of Russia, it is said, having perused 
Madame de Campan's book, and learning that her illus- 
trious mother-in-law wished likewise to read it, deemed pro- 
per to tear out the leaf which contained the objectionable 
observations; but the Empress-mother had seen, in the 
meanwhile, another copy of the work, and had discovered, 
by the passage in question, the cau^e of the want of 
that particular page in the Empress's book. Struck by 
this intended mark of attention on her part, when next she 
met her daughter, she addressed her thus:— -Je vous suis 
gres, ma ch^re enfant, de ce que vous avez voulu m'eparg- 
ner de la peine en m'otant la possibility de lire le passage 
que contenait le feuiUet que vous venez de dechiret* Ma- 
dame de Campan, je trouve, a du avoir raison : eduqu6e 
sous les yeux de Catherine, vivant pi*esque dans un etat 
perpetuel de discipline et d'ordre devant elle, ayant ete. 


d'ailleurs, elev^e avec des dispositions pour le travail et la 
lecture, sa maitresse a du trouver la Comtesse du Nord 
ennuyeuse. Elle venait de changer le ton de la Cour — et 
la gaiet^ frivole reignait aux Tuileries. La conversation 
' d'*une jeune femme qui ne sympathisait aucunement avec 
les plaisirs de sa coterie n'a pas pu lui ^tre utile. Quant 
it cette pauvre Campan, je lui pardonne bien volontiers 
sa reflection sur mon compte/' 

In 1796, she ascended the throne with Paul ; and five 
years after, the tragic catastrophe at the castle of St. Mi* 
chael made her a widow. It is reported, that in private 
life Paul was a kind husband and a good father. The in- 
violate attachment which his consort bore to him for the 
space of twenty-five years, and the sentiments of afi^ection 
with which she cherished his recollection, may be considered 
as so many proofs of those qualities of the heart of that 
unfortunate monarch. Her Majesty, in mentioning his 
name, in the course of an interview with which I was ho- 
noured, after my presentation to her, appeared to me moved 
and sensibly afiected. This susceptibility of feelings the 
Empress-mother has manifested throughout her conduct to- 
wards her children and relations ; and the grateful return 
made by them, particularly by the Emperor, who is known 
to be unboundedly attached, and to pay the utmost defe- 
rence to his mother, must be a source of consolation to her, 
at the same time that it serves as a wholesome example to 
all classes of society, who generally look up to the family 
of their sovereign as models for imitation. 

The conspicuous features in the character of the Empress- 
mother, exemplified by her well-known daily distribution 
of time, are, a desire to promote and improve education 
among the higher as well as the lower classes of society — a 
wish to alleviate human sufferings — a disposition to support 
those who are without natural protectors, — and great zeal 


in encouraging national industry and in patronizing science 
and the arts. For the full and efPective accomplishment of 
the three former interesting objects, her Majesty has either 
herself founded appropriate establishnients and institutions, 
or has undertaken the direction of those which were already 
in existence. The number of those useful foundations in 
St. Petersburgh alone, which recognize the Empress-mo- 
ther as their supreme head and patroness, amounts to not 
fewer than twenty-three, to which she has added another 
within the last few months, by accepting the general di- 
rection of the Orphans^ Schools, at the request of her son 
the' Emperor. 

Those who are accustomed to look on the names of 
illustrious persons found in the capacity of patrons of 
schools, hospitals, and other charities, as being placed there 
merely to add lustre to the establishments, but not to call 
for personal exertion and interest from them, except on 
extraordinary occasions, will be surprised to learn that the 
Empress Maria Feodorowna of Russia does not consider her 
station, at the head of the numerous institutions alluded to, 
as a mere sinecure, but that she actually superintends the 
management of them all, from day to day, and from morn- 
ing till night ; visiting them all in turn, and being for 
ever occupied in devising improvements, extending their 
sphere of utility, or maintaining that which has already 
been confirmed by the test of experience. 

This most indefatigable and active Princess rises at a 
very early hour in the day, and receives the sealed reports 
direct, and without the interference of her secretaries or 
other officers, from each institution placed under her go- 
▼emment. She reads them all, makes remarks, and gives 
the necessary directions, either verbally or in writing, when- 
ever required. So attentive is she to the very minutiae 
and details of each establishment, the plan of most of 


which is of her own suggestion, that in the case of the 
HSpital des Pauvres, for example, which is particularly 
her own foundation, as I have been informed by her 
physician le conseiller Dr. Ruhl, she will make appro- 
priate remarks to him whenever the number of diseases 
or the number of deaths ap{>ears greater than in the re- 
ports of a corresponding period in the preceding year, 
and will express a wish that an inquiry may immediately 
be set on foot by this her principal physician into the 
cause of fihose differences. Nothing, in fact, escapes her 

As I proceed in the course of this work to describe a 
few of the institutions placed under the government of her 
Majesty, I shall probably have occasion to offer a few more 
observations on the character of their protectress. At pre-> 
sent, I may rest satisfied with adding, that, in regard to 
the system adopted by her at the institution of St. Cathe- 
rine, and the College of the Demoiselles Nobles, for the re- 
ligious and superior education of a great number of young 
ladies, a system which has worked admirably for upwards 
of thirty years, and has been productive of the happiest 
results, the Empress-mother may be considered, as having 
been, and still being, mainly instrumental in advancing the 
general civilization of the country ; for she has, in fact, 
civilized the mothers of future Russians, and of maoy of the 
present generation. ^^ Cette Princesse merite d'etre plus con- 
nue en Europe,'' were the general observations made to me 
not only by the upper, but also by the middle classes of so- 
ciety at St. Petersburgh. - Certainly, and without invidious- 
ness, it may be asserted, that public report does not at 
present furnish us with a parallel example of a crowned 
female of such extensive and effective benevolence ; such 
zeal and activity in advancing knowledge and good morals, 
such assiduity in the service of humanity and consideration 


for the unfortunate. A very extensive institution of a 
commercial nature, which J shall describe by'and by, known 
ander the name of '^ Lombard,'" being placed under her di- 
rection in order that the revenues might be made available 
for the support of certain public charities, the Empress- 
mother drew up a code of regulations by which its ope- 
rations as a loan bank, for people in need, were to be 
regulated. In giving this code to Monsieur Meidoff, the 
gentleman whom the Empress had placed at the head of 
that establishment, she addressed him in the following 
words: — *^ Voild les regies par lesquelles vous serez 
guide dans les affaires de cette banque, mais il-y-a une 
autre que je vous donnerais en mSme temps qui n'est pas 
^crite: c^est la r^gle de mon coeur. Ne rendez malheureux 
que le plus petit nombre possible d'individus ; et ne vous 
empressez pas k faire des malheureux par Fapplication des 
rqrlemens que je vous donne.*^ 

I have stated that this Princess has shown great zeal 
in promoting national industry and in patronising the arts. 
The iUexandrowsky manufactoiy, of which I shall say a 
few words in the course of this volume, may be cited ii^ 
illustration of the first position, and her own example in 
cultivating with so much success some of the branches 
df the fine arts affords sufficient proof of the second. The 
Empress-mother takes great interest in science, and is 
particularly fond of botany. Her designs for medals 
which have been afterwards executed either by herself or 
by other artists, are much esteemed by the medallists and 
the connoisseurs. The two gold medals which she presented 
to the Imperial Academy of sciences in November last, in 
return for a gold one which that scientific body had struck 
in commemoration of her Majesty^s visits at the Acade- 
my at the beginning and conclusion of the second half 
century of its existence, were taken from dies engraved 

VOL. II. ' D 


by herself. Tfaej represent the portraits of the late 
Emperors Paul and Alexand^; and as works of art, I 
can with truth say that they would. do credit to a professed 
engraver. Of cameos and intaglios on stone, of her own 
design and execution, some of which are dqxisited in 
the public collections of St. Petersburgfa, I have already 
spoken. They are remarkable for their finish. In the 
pleanng art of turning, she is said to exoel. I .have had 
occasion to see several well-executed pieces of this. kind, 
both in ivory and wood, from her lathe, and evem some 
very complicated and extensive works of the same descrip- 
tion, in some of the Imperial country palaces. One would 
imagine, that with so much occupaticm and so many and 
important duties, all of her own seeking, in which 
known to take the greatest delight, and which she most 
conscientiously discharges, this Princess could not find 
leisure for study or any other engagement. Such, hbw- 
ever, is not the case. She either finds time to read, or has 
books of merit read to her, while she is engaged in draw- 
ing, engraving, turning, or some of the ligliter occupations 
peculiar to her sex, in all of which her object is a little 
useful relaxation from severer duties. As several of her 
Institutions are situated at some distance from the capital, 
and some even as far as Moscow, the Empress id seldom 
long without undertaking journeys, in order to judge by 
her own personal observation of the state and progress of 
those establishmeats. This constant activity keeps ber M&* 
jesty in an uninterrupted state of health ; apd at the age of 
fiixty-<eight years she elhibits, in her personal appearance, 
as she does in, mind, all the vigour and integrity of one at 
a much earlier period of life. Pity that nature's laws 
will not admit of the Russians applying to this Princess 
the same aspiration which they will apply to her memory, 
" Estoperpetua!" 


Of the other niembers of the Imperial Family usually 
resident in St. Petersburgh, I have had no opportumty of 
personally judging during my stay. The Grand-duke 
Michael, who is extremely attached to his profession, and 
who is at the head of the artillery atid of the engineer 
corps, was absent a greait part of the time, and no pre- 
sentation took place to him. Captain Jones, however, who 
visited St. Petersburgh only four or live years before, has* 
represcmted him as a Prince of the mdst c6ndd8oendji^ 
aatd unaffected manners, and highly popular. In visiting 
with His Imperial Hi^ness the military hospitals. Captain 
Jones was a witness to the general burst of ^ you are 
welcome !^ which broke from the patients as the Duke 
entered the establishment; and in order to sitence, as it were, 
the incredulous, who, whenever any thing of this kind is 
vdated as having taken place abroad, immediately cry out, 
^ Oh, it was all settled beforehand!'' the Captain thinks 
it necessary to adduce proofs that upon the occasion al- 
luded to by him, the occurrence could not have been 
prepared, but must have been spontaneous. 

The Grand^uchess Helena Paulowna, formerly Fre- 
deriea Charlotte Maria, daughter of Prince Paul of Wiir-> 
temherg, who upon her marriage with the 6rand-d\ike 
Michael embrisoed the Greek religion, was extremely ill 
diRing the whole period of my stay ; and by the universal 
qrmpathy which her perilous situation excited among the 
supeiier claasei, as weU as from the reports of her character 
which were current on that occlusion, I. concluded that she 
■fust be ab amiable and popular Princess. I confess I was 
sonewhat surprised at finding t)iat the practice of announc- 
ii^ the sfiile of health of a person so intimately allied to the 
fiNoily of tbe1Sov»eSgn, which obtains in other great capitals 
ia Eusropey tinder simSar circumstances, was not followed in 
Che case of the Gfand^duchess Michael. One of the con- 

D « 


sequences of such an omission seemed to be, that the most 
akmning, and, at times, even absurd reports were at every 
moment put in circulation among the families of the great« 
The practice of issuing bulletins is an excellent one, and 
has been introduced, I have no doubt, among the families 
of Sovereigns, not from ostentation, but from reasonable 
motives; It keeps in check the medical attendants^ by 
making them feel daily the weight of their responsibility, 
and satisfies the mind and the natural anxiety of the public^ 

The constitution and arrangement of the Imperial house* 
hold and the court are, I believe, pretty much the same 
at St. Petersburgh as in other great capitals ; but as in 
Russia particular ideas are entertained of and importance 
attached to rank, it may not be unacceptable to those who 
are fond of thumbing Debrett's and the Imperial Calendar^ 
to know bow these things are managed at the Imperial 
Court of St. Petersburgh. The divisions of the di£Perent 
charges and office-bearers are as foUows. 

Household of his Imperial Majesty, with a ^^ Mi* 
nistre de la Maison de TEmpereur.*^ The minister at present 
is Prince Yolkonsky. This great office of the Court, which 
stands alone, was created by the present Emperor in Sep- 
tember 1826, in virtue of an ukase addressed to the di- 
recting Senate ; on which occasion, the nobleman already 
mentioned was appointed to it by his Majesty. From the 
regulations of that officer, issued at the same time, it ap- 
pears that his duties are to superintend all the different 
establishments of the Court; to have the control of the 
Imperial theatres, and to be director of the Empetot's 
private cabinet and privy purse. He is under the imme- 
diate orders of the Emperor, is alone responsible to his 
Majesty for his accounts, and can receive orders from no 
other authority. A Board of Scrutiny and Control, for 
examining and auditing this officer's accounts, was after^ 


wards established by his Majesty^ which seems to preclude, 
by the wise regulations framed to that effect, the possibility 
of the least peculation or irregularity in the management 
of the enormous sums of money that pass through his 
hands, even were not the high integrity of the present 
minister so proverbially established. 

Next come what are styled *< grandes CHARGES DE LA 
COUR^' or the grand officers of the Court, having rank of 
the second class of nobility, consisting of the Grand Cham- 
berlain, two Lord Stewards, the Principal Cupbearer, the 
Master of the Horse, and three Masters of the Hounds. 

The other charges are called ** Secondes Charges de 
LA CouR,^' and the officers fiUing them have the rank of the 
third class of nobility. There are five Maitres and two 
Marechaiujc de la Cour. The two latter posts are filled 
by M. Cyrille Naryschkine, a descendant of the mother of 
Peter the Great, and by Prince Nicholas Dolgorouky, one 
of the few noblemen who keep open house in St. Peters* 
burgh ; he is particularly affable to strangers. Four 
Eeuyersy and some who are said to be ** en function 
d'Ecuyers,^ by which, I suppose is meant honorary Ecu«- 
yers ; three Veneurs and three others '* en function de Ve- 
neurs.'' The Grand Master of Ceremonies, Comte Stanis- 
las Potocki, brother-in-law to the lady at whose house I 
was staying, fills this office. This nobleman is well and 
advantageously known by most of the people of rank in 
England. Attached to him there are five Masters of Cere^ 
monies, who do not, however, enjoy the rank of the third 
dass of nobility, but of the fourth or fifth only. There 
«re nine Chamberlains, who wear the golden key fastened 
to one of the buttons of their coat, near the pocket, and a 
very large number of nominal Chamberlains, to whom the 
title is granted with a view of giving them rank. Count 
Tatistcheff is the <« Gentilhomme de la Chambre ;" and 


after him, there are a great many honorary gentkineii of 
the bedchamber, several of the younger branches of the 
high nobility being, by special favour of the Emperor, 
included in this list for the reason above mentioned — that 
of affording them rank and precedency in society, by being 
thus attached to the Court. 

The household of the two Empresses is thus constituted : 
a Grande Midtresse^ Maltresse de la Cour^ Dames d'Hanr 
newr d portrait^ Demoiselles d'Hwmeur d portrait^ De- 
moiselles d'Honneur. . The list of the two latter charges is 
very numerous,, and contains, as may be supposed, what the 
fair sex in Russia can boast of most illustrious for birth. 
The denomination of **^ portrait/' arises from the circum- 
stance of their wearing on the breast or shoulder, the por- 
trait of the Empress, encircled with brilliants. A few of 
them are also members of the order of. St. Catherine, 
foupded especially for ladies, and kept exceedingly select. 

Another section of the Court establishment, enjoying great 
consideration, is that which is called the Chapter of the 
Imperial Orders of Knighthood of Russia. In this depart- 
ment there is a Chancellor, a post which was filled, up to the 
time of his death in 1826, by M« Narysclikine, of wljom I 
shall have to say a word or two here^ifter ; a Grand 'Master 
jt>f Ceremonies, who in the present instance is the same that 
fills a similar office about the person of. the Emperor; a 
Treasurer and a -Director of thfi Chancelleries. The re- 
maining subdivisioliiB of the Imperial establishment have a 
reference to objects of domestic busiaess, and do not enter 
into the dassificafion of merely honorary distinction. 

Of the m^ical and derical departments of the Court, the 
latter of which^ in point of precedency, is placed second of 
the two, contrary to the custom of other courts, I shall 
speak in another place. 

It appears evident ev^ from this short account^ that 


the Imperial Court of St. Peterabm^gh mast on gala-days, 
when the difiperent officers wear their appropxiale dresses, 
present a spectacle of great miEignificenoe ; and such il is in 
tact represented to be by all thosd who have had' an oppor- 
tunity of seeing it, and by whom it is considered as superior 
to any other in Europe for splendour as well as number. 

The Constitution of the Imperial Government of Rus- 
sia is not easily defined. The^ principles on which it is 
founded, are those of absolute monarchy. Peter the Great 
was the first tirho assumed the title of Emperor, and was 
recognised as such by the other [European Jiations. The 
head of the Grovemment being himself the only law-giver,' 
.it follows that the rest of its machinery must be executive, 
and no part of it deliberative. This executive machinery 
is very extensive^ and has, from time to time, undergone 
some changes and modifications, particularly with regard 
to the different ministers, who were, before die introduction 
of that title by Alexander, directors of colleges or de- 
partments for the tcansactkm of public busmess. Consti- 
tuted aa it is at. present, the form of the supreme Go- 
vernment is this: — 


A. The Imperial Council of State. 
Divided into four departments, each having a chairman, 

1. Law. 

a. War. 

8. Civil and Ecclesiastical Affidrs. 

4 Political (State) Eoonomy. 
These are placed under a President, who is, at this mo- 
ment. Count Kotchoubey, a nobleman who has travelled a 
great deal, was a distinguished favourite with the late, and 
is much esteemed by the present Emperor.— -He was 
appointed President in May 1827. 


The following officers form an ex-officio part of the Im- 
perial Council : 

1. The Ministers. 

2. Members of the Commission for framing the Code 

of Laws. 
S. Members of the Commission of Petitions. 

4. Members of the State Office. 
The latter office consists of 

ia. Secretaries of State (not corresponding with our 
Officers of the same denomination). 

b. State Secretaries (Secretary-Generals) of particular 

Departments of Public Business. 

c. Committee of Ministers. 

B. ' Principal Staff {Etat Major) of His Imperial Ma- 

This is composed of several great offices connected with 
the administration of the army, and unites what, in Eng- 
land, forms, at present, three, and, a few years back^ 
five distinct departments ; such as the Secretary of State 
for the War Department, Commander-in-chief of the 
Army, Board of Ordnance, Secretary at War, and Com- 

The component parts of the £tat Major are — 

1. The Principal of the Staff. 

I have elsewhere mentioned the particular duties of this 
most important office, to which, I have been told, there are 
attached powers of great magnitude. 

2. The Inspector-General of Engineers. 

5. General of the Ordnance. 

4. Minister at War. 

5. Quarter-Master-G^neral. 

6. Greneral on Duty. 

7. Inspector and Auditor of military Accounts. 


8. Aid-de«Camp*6etieral6. 

9. Aid-de*Camps to His Majesty. 

10. Master- Greneral of Provisions. 

11. Commissary-General at War (Clothing). 
IS.. Commandant of the Imperial Quarters. 
18. Waggon Train. 

14. Chief Medical Staff. 

15. High Priest, or Proto-Presbyter of the Army. 

C. Executive {Directing) Senate. 

It consists of eight departments ; three of which are for 
the sole purpose of constituting a Board of General Survey 
of Lands, census, admeasurements of estates, territorial 
confines, and seignorial property. With the Senate, are 
likewise connected, 

1. The Heralds' College ; and 
«. The State Archives. 
The nomination and number of senators depend entirely 
on the will of the Sovereign. There is no titular President 
or Vice-President of the Senate, and the members there- 
of sit according to seniority. The Senate is a supreme 
Court. Its principal duty is to promulgate the laws and 
edicts (ukases) of the Emperor, adopted by and with the 
advice of the Imperial Council, and to watch over their 
execution. It is the highest tribunal for appeals, and its 
decisions are final. The Emperor alone can reverse the 
•entence. In some respects the Senate is not unlike the 
English Court of Chancery ; for it takes cognizance of tes- 
tamentary dispositions, marriage settlements, and other 
solemn acts, which are frequently laid before the Senate, 
to be judged of and settled in equity. One of the most im- 
fwrtaat officers in the Senate is the Attorney-General, who 
may object to the resolutions passed by any of the depart- 
ments, prevent their being carried into effect, and summon 


a general meeting of the memben, for' the purpofie of 
taking their united opinion, and finally detennining on the 

In order to expedite bunness, and preTebt as much as 
possible the accumulation of mrears, the Emperor ordained 
in ISSTs that there shall be in the Senate two new general 
assemblies ; the one formed of the three first departments 
of the Senate ; the other of the fourth- lind fifth, «b well as 
of the surveying departments. The attributes of the former 
are, first, the consideration of matters referred to the 
Senate^ by order of the Emperor ; secondly, of questions 
requiring new' legidatrris enactments, or a proper interpre- 
tation of the existing laws ; thirdly, of aflhirs in which the 
Crown is interested. The attribute of the liU:ter is to de- 
cide on all questions in which there shall exist a diflerenoe 
of opinion in the respective departments of the Senate. 

D. The Governing Synod. 

This is the supreme Court or Tribunal for all eccle* 
dastical matters connected with the orthodox Greek Reli- 
gion, and is composed of a variety of departments. 


A. Minister for Foreign Affairs. 

1. The Minister's own OflElce. 

S. State College^ or Office for For^ Affairs. 

8. Asiatic Department 

4. Diplpmatic Corps. 

Count Nesaelrode has exercised the chief functions of this 
Miniatry for a great ndany years. To neeompensehis long 
and successful service^ the. Emperor hai^ by a decree, 
dated the Oth of May, ! ISOS, named hiioi Vice«GfaaiK:dlor 


flff the Empire^an honorio'y dUtini^ion, hariBg no tpeeific 
dudes attached to it, but which is the highest situation in 
tlie State for a subject to fill, there being, at present, no 
Grand Chancellor. 

Since the accession of the Emperor Nicholas to the 
thitme, there has been added to some of the chief ministerial 
offices, a spedes of Assistant Minister, or Under Secretary, 
under the name of *' Adjoint," whose duties and respon- 
nbility are equal to those of the Minister, in the absence 
of the latter. He also' takes part in the deliberations ctf 
the Members of the Council of the Minister, and may 
insist on being instructed in whatever affair of impcMrtance 
is mooted in the Ministry, e?uimines documents, and takes 
diai^, occasionally, of some special branch of the depart- 
ment. The person who fills this important office in the 
Ministry for Foreign Affairs, is Count Matuszewic, A 
Polish nobleman, of great talents, to whom have been 
ascribed some very able state^documents^ published from 
time to time, by the Russian Government^ within the last 
two or three yearsL* He is a r^ular AngUmumtj speaks 
and writes the English language with gfeat facDity, and I 
found him perfectly informed on subjects connected with 
this country. We saw a great deal of Count Matuszewic at 
die house of Count Woronzow, with whom he is intimately 
acquainted ; and I know few public persons who are more 
deservedly and generally esteemed. He has received high 
marks of his Sovereign's regard, near whose person he is at 
present, with Count Nesselrode, on the Turkish territory. 

B. Miniiter of the Marine. 

1. The Minister's personal Office. 

2. Admiralty College. 

Under this denomination are classed together what in 
England are called the Board of Admiralty, the Navy, Vic-^ 


tualliDg, Sick and Hurt, and Pay Offices, as well as die 
fluperintendance of Naval Architecture and Ship-building. 

S. Cadets' Corps (Naval Academy.) 

4. Department for the Naval Afiairs in the Black 


5. The Comptroller's Office. 

6. The Naval Artillery Department. 

Adnrfral Moller has recently been appointed Minister 
of the Marine. He is, I am told, the eldest brother of the 
officer who was Grovemor and Commknder-in-chief at 
Cronstadt when Captain Jones, of tlie Royal Navy, visit* 
ed that establishment in 182S, and to whose courteous 
manners, as well as abilities in keeping that great Naval 
Dep6t of Russia in excellent order, the Captain bears tes-^ 
timony in his account of Cronstadt. 

The above arrangement of the Marine has very lately 
undergone some alterations ; or, as it is called, a new or- 
ganization* There are now permanent members of the 
Council of Admiralty: a General Hydrographer; a Pre? 
sident of the Scientific Committee ; an Intendant General ; 
an Inspector of the Artillery and Director of that De- 
partment ; lastly, a Director of the Department of Naval 
construction. The Board of Intendance General consists 
of the Directors of each department, who, when occasion 
requires, hold general meetings. 

The Department of the Admiralty publishes, from time 
to time, a volume of Memoirs under the supenntendance 
of the Scientific Committee, in which, among other papers 
and documents, a report is given of the progressive Scien- 
tific operations of the Department. The tenth volume 
appeared at the close of 18S6. 


C. Minister for Internal Affairs. 

(home department.) 

1. The Minister'^s personal Office. 

2. State-Economy and Public Buildings. 
8. Executive Police. 

4. Superintendance of the Medical Profession. 

a. Imperial Medico Chirurgical Academy. 

b. Physician Greneral for the Civil Department. 

D. Minister of Public Insinuation. 

This important office, to which is attached the General 
Direction of the ** Cultes Etrangers^' in the Empire, is at 
present filled by Prince de Lieven, a brother of the Rus- 
nan Ambassador in London, who was Curator of the 
University of Dorpat, when I visited that City ; and who 
is said to be admirably qualified for the situation to which 
be has just been appointed. 

1. The Minister's Personal Office. 

I. Department of Public Instruction. 

£. Academies. 

a. Of Sciences. 

b. Of Arts. 

c. Russian Academy. 

8, Principal Direction of Schools. 
4. Universities. 

a. Of St. Petersburgh. 

b. Of Moscow. 

c. Of Dorpat. 

d. Of Kharkof. 
€. Of Kazan. 

/. Of Wilna. 


5. Imperial Public Library. 

6. Special Institutions. 

a. Society of Belles Lettres and Natural Philosophy 

at Riga. 

b. Economical Society of Arts and Sciences. 

c. Mineralogical Society of St. Petersbuigb. . 

d. Society for the advancement of Kussiafi litera- 


ir. General Direction of the " Cultes Etrangers. 
1. Roman Catholics, ^ 
S. Greco-Uniats, 
8. Armenians, 

With their CoU^^ 

. ^11. Courts, and Consistories; 

4. Armeno Cathohcs, \ , - ^ , ... .■ 

^ _ ... / and the Admimstration 

5. Evangehcal, 

6. Reformed Evangelical, 

7. Mahometans. 

of Secular Affairs. 


A gentleman has been appointed within the last few 
months to this post of great delicacy, who, in his capadty 
of principal Counsellor of the Russian Embassy in London, 
became well known, about nine years ago, to the principal 
literary characters of this country, where he was indefatiga- 
ble in studying the several public and private institutions 
connected with the particular objects of his researches. 
Mons. Bloudoff, to whom I allude, has been attached to 
the Minister of Instruction for some years, as " Adjoint/' 
and the additional charge conferred on him on the present 
occasion, proves how much his services, as well as his abi- 
lities, are valued. In the course of an acquaintance of 
some years with this gentleman and his family, I can 
safely say, that I have not found a person who did not 
admit that Monsieur Bloudoff was deeply versed in ancient 
and modem literature, and possessed of much historical in- 
formation, particularly respecting his own country, and the 
religious and civil institutions of Europe. 


£• Minister of Finance, 
This Department iocludes the different birandies of Ad- 
mfaiiftration, known in England under the name of Trea- 
fliiry, Chanoellor of Exchequer^ Board of Trade, Wooda and 
Forests, Custom-house and Excise^ and is thus^ formed : — 
1. The Miniatcs^'s personal Office. 
SL Crown Lands. 

3. Mining Department. 

4. The Mint 

d. Foreign Trade. 

6. Duties and Taxes. 

7. Internal Trade and Manufactories. 

8. National Banks* 

a. Bank of Assngnats (Bank Notes). 

b. Loan Bank. 

c. Commercial Bank. 

9. National Treasury. 

General Cancrine is, at present, the Minister of this de- 

P. Minister of Justice, 
1. College or Department of Justice. 
5L Magistracy. 

5. Archives of ancient State Documents. 

4. Court of Equity for the settlement, valuation, and 

surveying of Landed Property, Houses, and Estates, 

with subordinate departments in six different parts 

of Russia. 

The Minister of Justice is particularly connected with 

the IKrecting Senate. 

Of that branch of the public service, the General Post 
Offiee» which forms a distinct department of the Imperi$l 
Government, I have spoken at full length elsewhere There 
are several other minor, though important brantohes of ad«- 
oaiiiistratioD, which I need not ei\umerate here, hs my 


object, in supplying the above general expose, ot ^^ quadre,^' 
of the Imperial Government at St. Petersburgh, was 
merely to afford a correct and collective view of its cha- 
racteristic form and constitution, without entering into 
more detail than was necessary, and which could not be 
interesting to English readers. But it remains for me 
to add the information contained in this expose, an ob- 
servation which candour and justice demand, and which 
indeed will readily suggest itself to my readers ; namely, 
that that nation must have reached a considerable de- 
gree of civilization and power which can require, and is 
known to make visible progress under, such an extended 
and systematically arranged plan of government rule; 
to which I may farther remark, that the character of 
the individuals who have been lately selected by the Em- 
peror to fill some of the most responsible situations in 
that system, may be fairly assumed as a guarantee of the 
disposition in that Sovereign to improve it, and give it 
stability. My own limited personal observations, and the 
public opinion, entitle me to make this assertion. Nor is 
the attention of the Emperor directed only to the more im- 
portant departments of his administration ; for, from an 
ukase published in October last, it appears that his Majesty 
has even bestowed his thoughts on the well-being and 
instruction of the inferior clerks of all the public offices, 
and has ordered certain measures to be adopted in their be^ 
half, which, while they tend to promote the service of the 
State, are also calculated to benefit those deserving indivi- 
duals, and secure the means of appropriate education to 
those young men who may wish to enter the civil service. 

tThat the Russians in becoming an European power of the 
first magnitude should have, almost at once, adopted that sys* 
tern of multiplied bureaucracy which is prevalent among the 
ccmtinental nations, and which their Imperial Rulers' deemed 
essential to their own political existence, is a fault which 


has been ascribed to them by writers of authority on 
Russia. If it be a fault indeed, it is one which was almost 
to be expected in the case of so vast an empire, and of which 
France has been guilty to a much greater degree, though 
^th far less extended dominions. Comparing the two 
departments of the ministry of the interior alone, by way 
of illustration, in Paris and St. Petersburgh, it will be 
found that the number of persons employed in each are as 
eight to eleven, and that the subdivisions in the former 
are triple the number of those of the latter. The manner 
also of arranging the subdivisions of the department in 
question at St. Petersburgh, and the method which I am 
uAd exists among them, however unnecessarily complicated, 
are extremely simple compared to the divisions, sections, 
bureaux, and other fractional subdivisions to be found in 
tbe home department in the French capital. How either 
system works in practice, compared to the other, I cannot 
pretend to assert. What I have so far advanced on the 
subject is a matter of notoriety to be found in printed 
documents, and respecting which one cannot err ; but as 
to their execution, my experience in the case of St. Peters- 
burgh does not supply me with the same data, which I took 
great pains to procure in regard to the same department 
in Paris, where I once resided for nearly two years. There 
the system of bureaucracy is not only pushed to excess, 
but works ill. Before the most trifling business can attain 
the honour of falling under the consideration of the head 
of the department, it has to pass through what is not unaptly 
called ajiiiire^* and be subjected to the several processes 

* That opening through which a small piece of metal is forced 
in order to draw it out into a lengthened wire. The bureaucrstos 
eould not have adopted a more significant expression to designate 
tiie progreto of subjecting the most trifling matter to the above 
d — c ri bed interminable operations. 

vol.. II. B 


of reading, regtsteriog, revising, protooolling, preci8*writing» 
and index-makings in several distinct rooms of the depart- 
ment, out of which it comes stamped in many places to benefit 
the revenue,-H3cribbled all over with notes and corrections 
on the four turned-down corners of the paper — with signa* 
tures, initials, figures, written indications of having been 
referred backwards and forwards, additional scraps of paper 
pinned to it, and piices illustratives tacked to it with ribbons 
of all colours ; sp that the original document, and frequently 
the subject-matter of it, are lost in such an interminable 
farrago. I speak from experience; not in my own case, 
thank heaven ! but in that of some of my dearest friends, and 
submit that so preposterous a system amounts nearly to a 
mockery of justice and redress, occasioned by the waste of 
time and money to which it gives rise in cases of a public 
as well as of a private nature. As I before observed, I am 
not master of the manner in which a system somewhat 
similar, though professedly more simplified, succeeds in St. 
Petersburgh, nor am I aware of the effects it produces ; but 
this I know, that there, too, in the few opportunities which 
I had of seeing such things, original applications to any one 
of the heads or superior officers of the several ministerial 
departments from private individuals ; or the common re- 
presentation, report, or exposi of one branch o£ a depart- 
ment to another, had been made to go through so many 
successive steps before they reached their ultimate des- 
tination, that the most tenuous affair had bulged out into 
almost unnatural dimensions. I have heard some of the 
principal persons in office, remarkable for their good sense 
and ingenuity, admit all the force of this defect ; and his 
present Majesty is known to be striving to remedy it by 
that sort of gradual reform, which can alone be safely 
adopted in a case which, to use a professional expression, 
had become almost chronic. 


In speaking of various nations, a cosmopolite, as I pro- 
fess to be, is more likely to be impartial. If, therefore, I 
venture, while on this subject, to recommend for imitation 
to the two nations which have formed the subject of this 
digression, the admirable system of simplicity known to 
exist both in the Home and Foreign Offices in England, I 
shall not be taxed with any undue admiration for the 
institutions of a country in whose naval service I have had 
the honour of spending twenty years of my life. 

R S 




Buildings and InstituiionB connected with the Administration of Go- 
vernment. — The Senate House. — Code in the handwriting 
of Catherine II. — The Aumiralty. — Buildings, plan, and in- 
ternal arrangement. — Its Cabinets of Natural History and Na- 
tional Curiosities. — The Model Rooms. — General Bentham and 
the Carriage-ship. ^ Launch of the Alexander, 110 guns, and two 
other ships of the line. — Their conveyance to Cronstadt. — Rus- 
sian Navy. — The Etat-Major. -— Departments of Geography, 
Hydrography, and Land-Surveying. — The Lithographic Depart- 
ment. — Depot of Maps and sale of them. — Great Map of the 
Russian Empire. — Secret Geographical Cabinet. — Travelling 
Maps of Alexander. — Autograph Schemes of Alexander, for Re- 
views and Sham-Fights. — Topography of the difiPerent Governments. 

— Manufactories of Mathematical Instruments. — The Printing- 
press Department. — The Chanceiierie. — The Library. — Autograph 
Letters of Peter the Great. — The War-game. — The Incombus- 
tible Hall. — Military Archives from the time of Peter the Great. 

— Domestic Establishment of the People resident in the Palace of 
the £tat-Major. — General Observations. — The Chateau St. 
Michel. — The Corpe du Genie. — The Arsenals. — The Foun- 
DERY. — The Colleges. — The Post-Offick. — The present 
System. — Distribution of Letters. — Private Post-office for cor- 
responding with the Emperor. — Revenue of the Post-office. — 
The Citadel. — The Mint. — General Enumeration of other 
Public BuUdings connected with the Administration of the Civil 
and Military Government at St. Petersburgh. 

Thb public buildings and institutions connected with 
the administration of government in St. Petersburgh are 
numerous, and, like every thing else, on a scale larger than 


is to be met with in other capitals. The extent of the 
Empreand fifty-three millions of inhabitants seem to require 
them to be so. St. Petersburgh is the centre to which ne- 
cessarily converge every question and transaction of public 
interest, mooted or occurring in every part of the Empire* 
even in the most distant provinces, from Abo to the Pa^ 
cific Ocean^ and from Astracan to Eamtchatka. With the 
example of the most civilized nations in Europe before them, 
and the happy effects already existing, of the slowly and 
dearly bought experience of those nations, the founder of 
the modem capital of Russia and his successors were enabled 
to frame, at once, such a system of public administration 
as was likely to suit a people about to become European, 
and to erect the necessary edifices for each of its numerous 
branches, on a plan of useful precision and commensurate 
magnitude, likely to surpass the models from which they 
were borrowed. To accomplish this, Peter, Catherine, 
Alexander, and now Nicholas, have courted foreign as well 
as native talent ; and in the construction of that class of 
public buildings, which it is the object of the present chap- 
ter to describe, as well as in the internal arrangement and 
distribution of the affairs to be transacted within them, 
architects and men of such talents for business were en- 
gaged, as were likely at once to place the whole machinery 
for the public service on the most effective footing. That 
such has been in reality the case will be seen from what 

The Senate-house is the first of the public buildings con- 
nected with the government of the country, which presents 
itself to our notice. In its exterior it is not, perhaps, one 
of the most remarkable edifices of the capital, but for its 
extent, and the importance of its destination, it claims a 
specific mention. The front of the building faces the 
statue of Peter the Great, and from its situation forms 
the Dorth-west angle of the Place d'Isaac. One side ex- 


tends along the English Quay, of which it foima the begin- 
ning, and the o^er looks into a long and handsome street 
called the Galemaia, The three insulated fafades, repre- 
sented partly in the frontispiece-plate to the first Volume, 
and partly in that which gives a view of the English Quay, 
exhibit a plain basement story, which is surmounted by a 
principal one, and ornamented by tetrastyle Ionic por. 
ticos, as remarkable for their size and chaste severity, as is 
the entire building for its simplicity. It were better, per- 
haps, had the surface been washed with a composition of 
a delicate stone-colour, instead of the present staring deep 
yellow, singularly contrasted with the dazsling white of the 

The building, seen within the inner court has the form 
of a quadrangle, covering an area of fourteen thousand 
square feet, and is occupied by the different offices of the 
Senate. Its interior exhibits nothing beyond a continued 
suite of apartments, many of them of large dimensions, but 
furnished in the simplest manner imaginable, and decorated 
merely with the full-length portraits of Catherine and other 
sovereigns of Russia. In one of the halls, which serves as 
the conference-room, within a species of temple made of 
solid silver, and very handsome, the original manuscripts of 
the code of laws given by that Empress, are preserved ; all of 
which are said to be in her own handwriting. The great 
extent of public business transacted by the Senate, necessa- 
rily requires a vast number of employes^ who, with the several 
applicants and other persons interested in matters subject to 
this department, attend daily in this place, and give to the 
establishment, even at so early an hour ^s ten oVIock in the 
morning, an air of bustle which can only be compared to 
that witnessed in the long-room and other offices of the new 
Custom-house in London. On one occasion, wishing to 
speak with one of the principal senators, whom I found at 
bis post as early as the hour just mentioned, I had to wnde 


through a double line of carriages outside of the Senate- 
house, found the inner court full of sledges and other 
Tehicles, and with difficulty made good my way through a 
kmg range of rooms crowded with people, running in all 

Close to the Senate-house, and forming the opposite side 
of Isaac-square is the western wing of the Admiralty, an 
edifice which, in its present state, may with truth be said 
to be without parallel in Europe. Its principal front on 
the land side measures considerably more than one-third of 
an English mile in length, and its depth extends to six 
hundred and seventy*two feet down to the water'8-«dge« 
The exterior of this vast building has been greatly embel- 
Ushed and completely modernized within the last five years. 
The moat and ramparts by which it was surrounded like a 
castle, and on which cannons were mounted, have disap- 
peared, and a handsome promenade is substituted. The 
centre of the principal fa9ade is occupied by a handsome 
large gate, not unlike a triumphal arch, seventy-five feet 
high, surmounted by a rich Doric entablature, in the 
frieze of which is a massive and bold bas-relief. The prin* 
dpal entrance is through this gate, which is flanked 
with two colossal groups placed on granite pedestals, and 
bearing the celestial and terrestrial globes of huge dimen- 
fiODs. The rdief of the frieze represents Russia seated 
on a rock beneath laurel trees, with the emblems of 
strength and plenty by her side, and Peter receiving the 
trident from the hands of Neptune ; while the Goddess of 
Wisdom, who stands beside the Emperor, contemplates the 
majestic stream of the Neva. At 6ach angle of the enta- 
blature a s^tue, sixteen feet high, is placed, and from the 
centre rise the lofty tower and cupola, the former of which 
is quadrilateral, and surrounded by a canopied gallery, 
adorned with Ionic columns, each bearing aloft an allegori- 
cal statue. The cupolfi has H graceful elliptic curve in four 


compartments, in one of whicb^ facing the square, is a large 
clock. A lantern surmounts the cupola, with a nar* 
row gallery around it, defended by a light iron balustrade ; 
and from the lantern springs with tapering elegance the 
spire, to a height of eighty-four feet, including the colos- 
sal vane in the semblance of a ship under full sails. This 
spire is covered with the finest ducat gold, and from its 
great elevation, catching and reflecting the first as well as 
the last rays of the sun, exhibits a most brilliant appear- 
ance, and is seen from every quarter of the metropoUs, often 
serving as a beacon to guide the way-lost traveller towards 
this common and well-known centre of St. Petersburgh. 

On either side of the grand entrance the building pro- 
jects two hundred and fifty feet, with a rusticated base- 
ment, and a principal, or only story, pierced with eleven 
handsome windows, with rustic architraves, and horizontal 
cornices, surmounted by a running frieze, which contains 
naval trophies in bas-relief. Beyond this line of the build- 
ing, right and left, the general elevation again changes its 
character, and assumes a loftier style, forming of itself a 
whole worthy to serve as a facade to a princely mansion. 
Three distinct members are distinguishable in this division 
of the main structure. The first is a portion of the building 
one hundred and twenty feet long, somewhat in advance of 
the general line of the edifice, composed of a basement story, 
having three well-proportioned Doric doors, and supporting 
a handsome portico of twelve Doric columns, with a pedi« 
ment of the finest proportions attached to the principal story 
and attic. The windows are placed in each intercolumniA- 
tion, and those of the principal floor are embellished with 
Doric balustrades. The pediment contains in bas-relief the 
figures of several Genii presenting to Russia the fruits of 
science and industry. A statue is placed on each of the 
acroteria, as well as on the centre of the pediment ; and 
ix>lossd recumbent figures of the principal rivers in the 


empire, upon large oblong pedestals of granite, are disposed 
near to the doors. The second and third portions of the 
building arc found on each side of the portico just men** 
tioned, where the rustic basement and principal story and 
attic are continued about abcty-three feet further, and a 
fine colonnade of six pillars, of the Doric order, appears at 
each end, thus terminating the general front of the edifice. 

The sides or wings of the Admiralty present an eleva- 
tion similar to that just described, except that the central 
portico, and lateral hexastyle colonnades, are on a more ex- 
tended scale. 

The plan of this vast edifice, seen from the interior, within 
wbidi we were admitted by permission, presents a long and 
the two short ndes of a parallelogram of buildings, under 
which is a corridor or piazza supporting the apartment of the 
principal story. A second range of buildings runs exactly 
parallel with the three sides of the former, and compre- 
hends an assemblage of magazines, block, cordage, and 
tool-houses, carpenters and smiths' shops, stores, and boat- 
houses. These parallel ranges are separated from the 
main building by a canal over which a central and two 
lateral bridges are thrown. These canals terminate in 
a square basin at the extremity of the wings of the Admi* 
mlty, and in front of the colossal gateways, which afford an 
entrance within the wings from the river side. In the 
inner area, occupying about 8901 square saj6nes, or 6^807 
square feet, there are four uncovered slips for the construc- 
tion of the largest, and two for that of the smallest class of 
vessels of war. A three-deck ship, and one of seventy-four 
guns, had just been launched from them, and appeared to 
me to be very fine vessels. The outer, or more important 
ranges of buildings, besides the piazzas, have on the ground 
floor a succession of arched. rooms, some of which are used 
as <xffices, other as dwellings for the resident employiSf and 
the greater part as store-houses. Above these run the 


grftDd suites of rooms, consisting of long and beautifully- 
ornamented galleries, a library, council room, general 
assembly rooms, and certainly one of the finest parade 
staircases I have any where seen. The stairs are arranged 
in double opposite flights ; a grand open gallery extends 
round three sides, lighted by large windows, and double 
ranges of rich Corinthian columns of great size support the 
soffit arranged in square ornamented compartments. 

The disposition of the rooms and the nature and ar* 
rangement of the objects contained in them, I was enabled 
to examine and study at leisure, thanks to the good offices 
of Count Woronzow and his aid-de*camp. Prince H ■ , 
who, on this as on all other occasions, were all kindness 
and attention ; and also through the courteous and ready 
assistance proffered, unasked, by two superior naval officers 
holding a high rank, and performing duty at the time 
within the Admiralty. One of them had served on board 
an English man-of-war. 

There is a long narrow gallery running at the back 
and one side of the principal or central line of buildings, 
and over the piazzas^ in which are arranged in large 
glass cases along the wall, and between, as well as in 
each of the windows, a great number of objects of Natu* 
ral History, particularly zoological specimens presented 
by Russian navigators and travellers, or procured through 
consular and commercial agents. Some of these, as may 
•be expected, are rare and interesting ; but in general neither 
the arrangement, nor the mode and style of their prepara- 
tion, appeared to be of the best description. The trifling 
collection of minerals, too, would be scarcely worth noticing, 
were it not that some specimens are interesting on account of 
their localities. These curiosities, in fact, are misplaced in 
this establishment ; for, although the objects are obtained 
Ihrough the means of the public naval service, it does not 
follow that they should not be committed to the care of 


tboBe who are solely occupied with natural ^deuces, and 
deposited in a public building for that purpose.* St Per 
tersburgfa appeared to me to be deficient in this point : 
with the exception of the neat but not large collection of 
zoological and mineralogical specimens, which forms part of 
the cabinets of the Imperial Academy of Sciences, that 
capital does not boast of a Museum of Natural History 
worthy of its rank among the principal cities of Europe. 
This deficiency is the more remarkable, as there appears 
to have been at no tijne any thing niggardly either in 
planning en- adopting projects for great public buildings for 
such important purposes, or any difficulty in filling them» 
No nation that aims at the cultivation of science ought 
to be without a great museum, in which every production 
of animal, vegetable, and mineral nature should be dis* 
played to the best advantage, and in the most intelligible 
as well as impressive manner, freely accessible to the pub^ 
lie It is impossible to deny that the study of natural 
science, and even the simple but repeated contemplation of 
natural objects sdentifically classed, are powerful contri* 
butors to the advancement of civilization. 

Passing from this gallery into the suite of rooms which 
range in front of the building, beginning from the centre 
and proceeding towards its eastern termination, I found 
them neatly fitted up with a variety of objects of great 
interest connected with tactical, political, and physical 
navigation, forming a most appropriate and unique mu* 
seum for such an establishment. 

In the first room I found a variety of warlike accoutre-^ 
ments, of singular device and workmanship ; darts, weapons 
€t all sorts, masks and vizors of wood, painted in fantastic 

* This was written on the spot. Since then^ this Museum^ by an 
offder of the Emperer^ dated last month, has been transferred to 
the Aoadamy of Sciences. 


colourSf as well as lances, in excellent preservation ; har- 
poonSy and a peculiar sort of tackle for fishing. These 
were principally arranged round the room, or suspended 
from the walls ; many were in glass cases, and some lay 
on tables and pedestals. These various objects were 
brought from the Aleoutean Islands, by the successive na- 
vigators who visited them, since their subjection to the 
Russian dominion. This range of islands, situated to the 
east of Kamtchatka, and between the fiftieth and fifty- 
sevehth degree of north latitude in the Pacific Ocean, be- 
long more properly to North America, from which they 
seem as if they had been detached where the peninsula of 
Alaska looks as if ready to split into islands, than to the 
continent of Asia, from the coasts of which the southern- 
most of the islands, Atta, is four hundred and fifty miles 
distant. I remarked, among other curious instruments, 
one which serves for purposes of incantation, and which 
consists of a number of the giWa of fish, dried and strung 
together in several rows, around a wooden circle or hoop, 
kept together by two pieces of wood crossing in the centre. 
This curious musical instrument, being held by means of 
the latter pieces of wood, is agitated backward and forward 
in the manner of a tambourine. Of the idols of these 
islanders, which are numerous, one is in the shape of a large 
sea turtle, with its belly open, containing in**the centre the 
representation of a fair human face. One of the officers 
who conducted us through the gallery had twice visited 
these islands, and favoured me with an explanation of their 

I noticed in the next room, among a great variety of in- 
teresting objects, the head of a male and female New Zea* 
lander, in a most beautiful state of preparation, exquisitely 
tatooed. The hair of both, in particular, deserves attention. 
They are by far the best specimens oi the kind I have 
seen. In the centre of the room there is a large square 


glass case, contaimng a multiplicity of articles of female 
dress, peculiar to the inhabitants of the islands in the Pacific 
Ocean ; and at one end a canoe, twenty feet long, made of 
fish skin, stretched over a frame made of light whalebone, 
with three equally distant circular spaces, large enough to 
admit three persons ; namely, a boatman at each end, and 
a passenger in the centre. The oars are light, and of an 
extraordinary length. This species of canoe cannot either 
fill or upset. A great part of this room forms a species 
of armoury of savage nations ; for it contains a most com- 
plete collection of pikes, spears, lances^ amounting to 
150, each with a difierent termination at the point ; some 
as sharp as a lancet; others having from ten to fifteen 
rows of sharp and crooked hooks, and others again with six 
or eight quills, armed with points dipped in poison, and 
fastened all round the spear. Tomahocks of great weight, 
scalfHng knives, and quivers, of various savage nations, full 
of arrows, with points of steel, flint, or jade, are found 
here in great number. The massive cross-bow, of polished 
steely was also shown to us which was found on Count 
Stenhoech, when he was captured by the Danes about 
150 years ago. 

In the third room there is a very large plan, in relief, of 
St. Petersburgh, as that dty was fifty years ago, and a great 
variety of nautical instruments, in handsome glass cases. 
These are chiefly Enghsh ; and among them I observed an 
excellent quadrant, made by Rowley, upwards of a century 
and a half ago. The collection of nautical instruments is 
continued in the fifth room, thus showing, in one continued 
view, the progressive inventions and improvements made 
by diflerent nations in this department ; and in the inter- 
vening room, a succession of models of machines, from the 
cideat to the most modem of them, for rope and cable^mak- 
ing, is displayed in a similar manner. 

One of the most beautifully proportioned and extensive 


salles in this Museum, is that of the models of ships of 
war, of various sizes, and boats, most of which are kept 
in large glass cases, and are disposed in such a manner as 
to exhibit progressively not only the different processes 
and methods of constructing vessels of that description, 
but also of docking, refitting, careening, and rigging them^ 
followed by almost every maritime nation or people on the 
face of the globe. In the subdivision of these models, 
which contains all kinds of canoes, from the simjdest to the 
most complicated, I was desired to inspect one in parti- 
cular, made with a sort of bulrushes of great length, tied 
in bundles and fastened together so as to form the bottom, 
sides, head, and stern of the canoe. These are the canoes 
in general use in the '* Isle de Piques;" and the second 
naval officer who escorted us, and who had navigated in 
those seas, saw them used by the inhabitants. The aea 
necessarily penetrates through the rushes into the canoe, 
but as necessarily runs out again, and therefore it can 
never be swamped. In the Isle de P&ques there is no 
wood to be found, and the fish caught in those seas are 
not of sufficient size to afford them materials for construct- 
ing better canoes, as some other islanders have done, who 
use the bones and skin of the fish for that purpose. 

The original model of the Admiralty itself, as built by 
Zacharoff, with its bastions, four drawbridges, the Neva 
running in a deep moat around it, and the five slips and 
two large boat-houses, as it existed down to 1816, with an 
exterior altogether resembling that of a citadel, is preserved 
in the adjacent saloon ; and certainly the changes which 
have taken place in the building since that time, by order 
of Alexander, and which I have detailed, have removed a 
great eye-sore from the best part of the town, and added a 
most imposing feature of grandeur to the metropolis. 

I was much interested in the cdlection of land and sea. 


tdl^graphSy which are very numerous, and begin from the 
more complicated arrangement and combination of balls 
and flagS} and end with the simplest semaphore of the 
present day. In the succession of inventions of this des- 
cription adopted for use, it appears that we have passed 
over, probably from caprice, but more probably from mere 
&rgetfulness, a few that were equally simple and efFectucU 
as the one now generally employed. 

The seventh room presents one of the most complete series 
of models of large vessels of different constructions : and 
among others, that of a carriage- vessel invented by General 
Bentham, in which he went, while in the Russian service, 
and under the auspices of the great Fotemkin, from St. 
Fetersburgh to the river Amour, for the purpose of carry- 
ing into effect a favourite project which that ingenious 
officer bad devised for building ships at the mouth of that 
river, where it enters the sea of Okhotsk, so as to have 
a sea-port for ships of war as well as merchantmen in the 
Pacific, some degrees farther South than the already exist- 
ing stations. The death of the great favourite put an end 
to the scheme. 

General Bentham entered the Russian service early in life, 
in which he was a contemporary with the famed Paul Jones^ 
and with General Fanshawe, another Englishman, lately de- 
ceased, at Warsaw, a most meritorious and highly esteemed 
officer. General Bentham^s services as a naval engineer under 
the reign of Catherine are not the only claims he possesses 
to the esteem of the Russians. His active and ingenious 
mind was for ever on the alert to invent and improve ; 
and from what he has effected in the naval department of 
his own country, while connected with it, his countrymen will 
be able to judge of the good he must have done to Russia. 
He is the inventor, among other things, of those large 
schooners caJrrying sixteen or eighteen pound carronades, 


which had a moveable keel, and were calculated to navi- 
gate in shallow seas, like flat-bottomed vessels. In one of 
these, the Millbrook, I sailed for some time, and I can 
bear witness to her superiority over any other schooner 
in the service. The great weight of metal which she was 
able to carry, with a crew as small as a common ten-gun 
hngg^ and no more, enabled one of her commanders to de- 
feat a French frigate, which had attacked the Millbrook 
while at anchor off Oporto. The Millbrook was ship- 
wrecked and sunk off the Berlenghas^ rocks, opposite the 
Portuguese coast, in April 1808, at which time I was 
serving in her as medical officer. Greneral Sir Samuel 
Bentham is as much attached to naval tactics and con* 
struction now, though advanced in years, as he was when 
in the vigour of youth. I have, with great delight, con- 
versed with him on the subject of his carriage-ship, and 
his journey through deserts, over ridges of mountains, and 
across some of the largest rivers in Russia, with no other 
accommodation than was afforded bv that identical machine, 
a model of which is very properly preserved in the Ad- 
miralty Museum, and which served either as a boat or a 
carriage, as occasion required ; and I found him as much 
alive to every circumstance attending that dangerous trip, 
as if it had been performed the year before. 

The two next objects which the Russian officers showed 
us in this room with becoming pride, were the model of 
a boat which gave to the father of Peter the Great, Alexis 
Michaelowitch, a taste for having a Navy, and which, for 
that reason, is styled by the Russians the ** Grand Father 
of the Russian Navy ;" and the identical arm-chair in 
which Peter used to sit when he presided at the Council 
Board of the Admiralty. The boat itself is preserved in a 
boat-house on the left bank of the Neva. 

One looks with interest, awakened by historical recoUec- 


tions, on the model here exhibited of the ship of the line, 
the ** Magi,^^ mounted by Orloff at the sea fight of Tchesm^ 
ID 1T70. Fifty-seven years afterwards, the Mahomedan 
nation was destined to see the Russian Navy assisting to 
renew the terrific scenes of that combat in another of its 
ports, and under the directing influence of an English 
Commander. At the time of my visiting the Admy»lty, 
the news of the battle of Navarino had been received at St. 
Petersburgh, where it caused great joy for several days. 
Our two Russian naval officers, therefore, while looking 
at the model of the Flag-ship which triumphed at Tchesm^, 
could scarcely avoid comparing the one brilliant action with 
the other. 

After paying a visit to the map-room, which contains a 
valuable collection of charts, we passed into the great coun- 
cil-chamber, in which is a full-length portrait of the reign- 
ing Emperor ; and having admired the Bibliothique^ rich 
in naval works, recently formed and placed in its present 
grand and imposing situation, we took leave of our polite 
and very affable conductors, both of whom understood and 
qpoke English with facility, pleased with and instructed by 
what we had seen. I have of necessity mentioned but the 
smallest part of the collections contained in this establish- 
ment; nor would a thick volume be sufficient to enumerate 
one by one the thousand objects we observed ; but this I 
may freely and most fully assert, that for order, neatness, 
methodical arrangement, and, above all, for the most scru- 
pulous cleanliness observed in every part, the interior of this 
(and I may add here, once for all, of every other) public 
building which I have seen, appeared to me equal, and in 
many cases to be superior, to the best establishments for 
public service. in England, and still more so when compared 
with similar or analogous institutions in other countries. 

The day before our arrival, a ship of three decks, to 


66 SHIP LAU1>4CH. 

mount 110 guns, was -launched from the slips of the Ad* 
miralty, in the presence of the Emperov and an immense 
concourse of people. She was named the Emperor Alex^ 
ander, and was built by Colonel Isakoff, on Sepping^s prin- 
ciples. On these occasions, the Members of the Coundl of 
the Admiralty and the Diplomatic Corps invariably attend, 
and the ceremony is performed with great iclat. The ship 
was commissioned^immediately by Captain Selivatcheff, and 
laid up for the winter alongside the right bank of the Neva. 
About a fortnight before this, another vessel, called the 
Grand Duke Michaely of seventy-four guns, constructed 
by Colonel Stocke, had been laimched from the Admiral^ 
Stocks at Ochkta, not far from the Admiralty, and com* 
missioned by Captain Hamaley; and a third vessel of 
eighty*four guns was launched from the New Admiralty to 
the westward of the English Quay, on the 31st of October, 
also in the presence of the Emperor and the Hereditary 
Grand-duke. She was christened V Imperatrice Alexandra^ 
in honour of the feigning Empress. I witnessed this striking 
ceremony from a distance. The day proved exceedingly 
favourable, and the whole population of St. Petersburgh 
seemed to have emptied itself on the two opposite banks 
of the river, where platforms and steps had been erected to 
receive it, and where they rent the air with their shouts 
on witnessing the ceremony, and on hearing the revered 
name of their Empress proclaimed at the sound of artillery 
which marked the progress of the vessel into the bosom of 
the Neva. Thus, in the short space of three weeks, the 
Navy of Russia was augmented by three ships of the b'ne, 
one of them a first-rate, all built in the very heart of the 
capital, and on the most approved principles adopted by 
the first maritime nation of Europe. 

I have on more than one occasion assimilated this 
Northern sea-capital to the queen of the Adriatic; and 


the resemblaiice between tbem is also striking in regard to 
tbe conveyanee of. ships from this dock-yard to the port. 
The bar at the mouth of the Neva prevents the free na- 
vigation of ships from the yard of the Admiralty to the 
harbour of Cronstadt There is scarcely a depth of eight 
feet of water from opposite the manufactory of Mr. Baird 
to below the bar, and twenty feet beyond that as far as 
Cronstadt Vessels are, therefore, taken down by means of 
immense floating machines shaped so as to embrace the ship, 
and called, from their oifice of carrying, camels, a name used 
at Venice to designate sunilar contrivances. Each camel is 
260 feet long, and thirty broad. From a thousand to 
fifteen hundred men, and a great many capstans, are em« 
ployed in the operation. I have been informed that several 
of the builders and workmen employed in this and other 
yards have received their instruction in England, and that 
such is the case also with regard to some of the naval officers, 
whose early nautical education has been derived from Eng- 
lish men-of-war. 

In point of cleanliness and ord^ » as well as discipline, 
the navy of Russia has made within the last twenty years 
such. progress, as to keep pace with the improvements that 
have taken place in every other public department. To 
this fact I can hear witness, by comparing the state in 
which I recollect finding some of their ships of war at 
Corfu in 180S, and again in the Tagus in 1808, with that 
in which they are said by competent judges to be at pre- 
sent. The eondition of their men-of-war sent on a recent 
occasion to oo-operate with the English and Filench squa- 
drons in the Grecian Archipelago ; and the share they bore 
in that glorious achievement, which has added the name of 
Navarino to the maritime exploits of Great Britain, confirm 
the above conclusion. 

The Admiralty establishment which is very consider^ 

F 2 


able, was, at the time of bur visit, under the command of 
Vice- Admiral Saritchoff, then Commander-in-chief at Cron- 
stadt. It is the Minister of the Marine who summons the 
board, at which he himself attends three times a-week, 
besides transacting the business of the Marine Department 
in general at his official residence. The persons employed 
at the Admiralty are psud, mnce the new regulations of 
October last, by the Treasury or Minister of Finance, 
and the officers and crew at the out-port by Commis- 
sioners appointed for that purpose ; there being now' no 
Navy Pay-office, or Treasurer of the Navy. 

It may readily be imagined that the machinery required 
for the management of an army like that of Russia, com- 
posed at no time of less than half a million of men, and 
often much more numerous, must be both complicated and 
on a large scale. Fart of this machinery is confided to a 
branch of the. military service called the Etat Major y which 
is subdivided into so many lesser branches, that not only a 
considerable number of persons of all ranks, talents, and 
abilities, are required to transact the necessary business of 
them ; but a vast edifice also is indispensable for their 
accommodation. To the situation of the building occupied 
by the Etat Major of St. Petersburgh, I have already 
made allusion, and have described the architectural appear- 
ance of its exterior. On this occasion its internal arrange- 
ment demands a more particular notice ; and this I am ena- 
bled to furnish from copious notes taken on the spot, when, 
with the permission of the Chef de la Maison de VEtat 
Major, Colonel Doumofi^, in the absence of the GreheraU 
in-chief of the StafiT, and accompanied by a friend, himself 
a superior officer well versed in these matters, I examined 
at leisure and in every part this interesting establishment. 

Under one roof are transacted the affisiirs of many of the 
most useful departments connected with the administration 


of the army, excepting those of the department of Ac- 
counts, which have lately been made over to another Board 
or Commission, similar to the War Office in London. 
One of the principal divisions of this vast institution is com- 
posed of hydrographers, topographers, and geographers, 
constantly occupied in improving the general Map of the 
Empire, as well as the Maps of the respective Govern- 
ments, by surveys, mensuration, and local inspection, 
both for military and civil purposes. From the first 
tracing, or laying down of the trigonometrical lines on 
paper, to the colouring or illuminating the maps when 
completed, every successive step is here performed in well 
appointed apartments by superior officers, subalterns and 
privates, all wearing their respective uniforms, on a scale of 
subdivision of labour, which is determined by the degree 
of ability and talent in the individual employed. Through 
these apartments we proceeded, following the officer, who 
had been appointed by the colonel-commandant to conduct 
us. They are very numerous, large, lofty, and uncom- 
monly well lighted. To us they appeared so tastefully 
painted and fitted up, and so well, furnished, that a gentle- 
man of fortune could not have disdained to make them his 
town residence. With respect to cleanliness also, I ques- 
tion whether a greater degree of it is to be found in a 
Royal or Imperial residence. The inlaid parquets shone 
as bright and unsullied as in the saloons of the richest 
mansions. In some of these rooms I observed private sol- 
diers and sub-officers engaged, some in copying MS. maps, 
and plans of towns and fortifications ; others in engraving 
them on copper. In a second suite of rooms, several young 
gentlemen, in the uniform of the stafi^, were employed either 
in drawing plans or colouring maps. While, in a third suite 
of rooms, a great number of officers and soldiers, sitting 
round very large tables, covered with green cloth, were 


intent on calculations, drawing up tables, and keeping 

The lithographic department consists of three very large 
rooms, in which many of the maps and plans are drawn on 
stone. This operation was performed by privates ; while 
vome of the officers superintended and corrected the proofs, 
Of prepared copies for the engraver. The stones are pro- 
cured from Bavaria; as, yet none fit for the purpose hav- 
ing been found in Russia. The printing department both 
for the copper and stone engravings adjoins the former, 
and occupies several rooms. The workmen here also are 
all military, and under military discifriine, enforced by the 
presence of officers. The presses are of the best descrip- 
tion, and generally constructed after the models of those 
of Paris. 

The maps and plans when completed, are given in charge 
to the keeper of the depot of them, who is authorised 
to sell them to the public. I found this person very at- 
^ntive and civil, ready* to show me every map I requested 
to see, or wished to consult.' A printed catalogue of them 
is published every year, and the sale of the maps is not 
limited to any particular class, but to all persons in general. 
The price which the maps bear on an average is very rea- 
sonable. For a map of Russia in Europe, beautifully en- 
graved, and with the principal roads and distances in 
versts m&rked upon it, published in twelve sheets last 
year, I paid ten roubles only (8s. 4id,) ; and for another 
map of the whole Russian Empire, includitig the kingdom 
of Poland and the Duchy of Finland, printed in the Rus- 
sian and French language, with roads aad distances marked 
agreeably to the existii^ regulation, published in six sheets 
in 1827, I paid the same sum. The. execution of both 
these maps is highly creditable to the persons employed* 
The latter has a very useful coloured table annexed to it. 


c^ reciprocal distances between seventy-three principal towns 
In Russia; and as far as that part of the Empire in 
which posting is practicable, the distances marked in this 
map are considered as the statute distances. A great map 
of Russia, in eighty sheets, is just completed, any number 
of which may be purchased separately. It is the most 
accurate and perfect thap of the Empire in existence^ 
marking the very latest acquisitions, and the recent divi- 
sions of the Interior into Grovemments, the canals, and 
other useful and important features of the country. Each 
dieet may be obtained separately for twenty-pence, and 
an indicative map of the whole, in six sheets, for ten 
rouUes. The whole costs but 100 roubles. 

Next to the dep6t of maps, atlasses^ and plans, are two 
rooms to which access ts obtained only by particular 
favour. They contain the private collection of the staff, 
and may be considered as the secret cabinets of the es- 
tablishment. Whatever relates to surveys and plans of 
towns and fortifications, with many secret details concern- 
ing places belonging to foreign nations, forming a body of 
geographical and topographical information, which to mili- 
tary commanders is absolutely necessary, and obtained 
either during conquests or in time of peace, by means 
usually resorted to among civilized nations, has bten col- 
lected in this private department. We found the officer in 
eharge of this part of the establishment very civil, and we 
are indebted to him for seeing the maps >Rdth which the late 
Smperor Alexander invariably travelled, whenever he left 
his capital for any length of time. They are beatly put up 
fai cases covered with green morocco, bearing outside the 
stamp of the Imperial Eagle and the title of the map. A 
large road-*map of central Europe by^Gottorp was a fa- 
vourite one with the Emperor, and seems from its appear- 
ance to have been often consulted. We were also shown 


several autograph minutes or drafts of military manoeu- 
vres, for general reviews and sham-fights on an extended 
scale, drawn up by Alexander himself, which would ap- 
pear to bespeak him well versed in military tactics, and 
in the language usually employed to describe them. 

In the same apartments are found the MS. topognu 
phical maps of most of the Governments of Russia, 
marked with conventional tints, to distinguish the va- 
rious physical characters of the country according to a 
given and generally adopted plan. A few of these maps 
are engraved. Those of the Grovernment of Moscow and 
Wilna, and of two or three other Governments in the South 
of Russia, are already published and may be procured. 
The environs of St. Petersburgh are about to be completed 
in sixteen large sheets ; and, judging by two or three of the 
MS. sheets which I saw, and were then in progress in 
another suite of rooms, this large map bids fair to be one 
of the finest specimens of topo-chalcography produced in 
modem times. The scale of this map is one and a half inch 
to the verst. It is beautifully coloured, and is about to 
be engraved on stone. It will be the mq^t minutely 
delineated map of the kind in existence. 

We were afterwards introduced into the suite of rooms 
in which all the mathematical instruments, for the use of 
those branches of the military service which require such 
assistance, are manufactured. The various operations ne- 
cessary for that purpose are performed in this part of the 
establishment, from the first choice of the material up to 
the more difficult step of dividing and polishing even the 
most delicate instruments of this description. A very 
large assortment of these is kept in glass cases ready for 
use, and numerous workmen are constantly employed in 
making others. The workmen are all privates or subalterns 
in the army and natives of Russia, who have been taught 


the art, and seem to be very expert' artisans. I remarked 
in particular some handsome theodolites, sextants, azimuth- 
compasses, pantographs, and telescopes very well finished. 

The press department for printing tables, registers, 
mflitary orders, reports, and forms, &C; is one of the most 
complete of the kind, and, like the other branches, performs 
its various operations from the very first step onwards. 
Workmen, who have served some time with Didot in Paris, 
are engaged in cutting the dies and striking with them 
the matrix in soft copper. For this purpose highly finished 
stamping engines are employed, such as are used at the 
Mint. The casting of the types goes on, from time to 
time, in an adjoining section of the building, arranged 
as a laboratory. Here they are cleaned, pared, polish- 
ed and distributed into cases according to the respective 
letters. The form and appearance of the types are very 
creditable to the Russian artists. It is notorious that 
printing at St. Petersburgh is now carried on fully as well 
as in Paris. I have brought home some of the finest spe- 
cimens of typography from the St. Petersburgh press, the 
characters of which came originally from the establishment 
I am now describing. From ten to twenty presses are 
constantly at work in the neighbouring apartments; to 
these succeed a series of drying-rooms, and lastly the 
binders' room, all exhibiting the same cleanliness, me- 
thodical arrangement, and military subordination and dis- 
cipline, which we had remarked in the principal division of 
the establishment. 

In addition to the departments already noticed, the 
Etat Major has a very numerous Chancellerie for trans- 
acting purely military matters; and a second for matters of ' 
a mixed nature, and connected with the civil part of mili- 
tary administration. In the latter, the clerks are all civi- 
liansy who are dressed uniformly in plain black clothes, and 


many of them decorated with orders. The chief of the 
Etat Major^ Count Diebitch, as well as the second in 
command, or director, has each a priyate office, connected 
with which is a superb and large board-room,- decorated 
with columns, and in the form of a rotunda, with the por- 
traits of the late and the present Emperor, and splendidly 

An institution of such an extent would not be consideied 
as complete without a military library. Accordingly we 
found one arranged in a vast and well-proportioned octa- 
gonal hall, most elegantly fitted up, and decorated with 
handsome Scagliola columns, which support a gallery 
lighted all round, as well as the body of the room, by a 
cupola. Within this are painted in chiaroscuro, and in a 
masterly manner, appropriate military fasti, drawn from 
ancient and modern history. Handsome bookcases, made 
of one of the prettiest and most delicate woods to be found 
in the North, called the Carelia birch-wood, are placed 
within each intercolumniation, both in the body of the 
library and in the gaUery. From the centre of the cupola 
is suspended a magnificent lustre, with thirty gas-burners^ 
by means of which the rotunda is lighted at night, as well 
as by four colossal candelabra made of bronze, of an antique 
but tasteful form, surmounted by the Imperial bird gniqp- 
ing in its talons the triple-forked thunderbolt, picturesque- 
ly disposed on each side, and from the points of which 
jets of burning gas are made to issue. The floor is 
a highly polished and beautifully inlaid parquet. In the 
centre there is a round table of extraordinary dimensions^ 
made of the same wood as the bookcases ; and four other ob- 
long tables are disposed, with other corresponding furniture, 
in different parts of the room. This species of wood, which 
is much used for articles of furniture in St Petersburgh*, 
when highly polished and varnished, has a very elegant 


*,f resembling in colour and waving what is called 
satin-wood in this country ; and must I feel certain, be- 
come popular if imported into England. Behae a large, 
and the only window, at one end of the room, is a colossal 
bronze bust of the late Emperor, under whose auspices 
and at whose bidding this unique establishment started 
into existence. At the opposite end stands a white marble 
bust of very creditable execution, and of the natural size, 
of the regenerator of Russia, Peter the Great, the work of 
Carlo Albagini. It is placed on a tall pedestal of green 
marble, the produce pf Russia. In a silver-gilt case 
resting on a gcJden eagle afBxed to the froYit of the pe- 
destal> the original code of the Empire dictated by Peter, 
is kept under lock and key;, and through the kindness 
ci one of the officers performing the duties of librarian, I 
had the satisfaction of perusing or viewing a great num- 
ber of autograph letters and memoranda in French as well as 
Russian, written by that Sovereign ; and also several ukases 
and other documents bearing his signature. The latter 
consists simply in the name, *f Peter,^ with the t written 
out of the line, and the final r marked strongs by the addi- 
tion of the yerr, a Russian character employed to that e£BBct. 
This Military Library is daily open to every member of 
the Staff indiscriminately, and books are allowed to be 
taken home by them for a fixed time, on inserting their 
title and name in a register. AH the periodical pubUoa- 
lions that issue from the press in Russia, are to be met 
with in this place. The officer and aid-de-camp in atten- 
dance were complaisant enough to show us in another part 
of the library, and explain to us the use of the ^ war-game" 
taUe, on which the present Emperor, when. Grand-duke, 
used to play, and study tactics from it with Greneral Paske- 
witch — the same, I believe, who lately brought to a glb- 
rious close the Persian war, and who was created by bis 


Majesty Count of the Empire, for his conduct on that 
occasion. This very complicated game, invented about 
twenty years ago by J. C. Ludovic Hellwig, conasts in 
giving and defending military attacks ; in manoeuvring ; 
crossing of rivers ; disposition of armies, taking of forts, 
together with all other operations performed during a cam- 
paign. It is composed of a great variety of moveable 
pieces of wood, numbered as well as differently coloured, 
to represent the nature of the ground, a certain number of 
men, officers, artillery, and baggage, field equipage, or- 
donnance, &c. disposed and moving on the ground agree- 
ably to certain fixed rules, of which there is a printed 
book, with ample directions for learning the game. It is 
said to be much more instructive than chess, and to fami- 
liarize very readily the young officer with the practice and 
technology of his profession. 

My readers may think that I have said quite enough of 
a single establishment ; but I must crave their pardon for 
adding still farther information on the subject. The real 
nature of such an institution, standing as it does without 
parallel, and belonging to a nation essentially military, can- 
not be thoroughly understood but by a minute and com- 
plete description of all its parts. It is not for me to say 
whether the two most recent writers on St. Petersburgh, 
who visited the establishment, are not manifestly deficient 
in their brief and superficial account of it. 

The ^tat'Major is remarkable for another part and 
purport of its building, which is perfectly unique in Eu- 
rope, namely, a large and lofty hall of cast-iron, contain- 
ing the archives of the whole Russian army. Not a par- 
ticle of wood is employed in the structure of this room, 
which is about 350 feet long, and 100 wide. It is vaulted, 
the arches being supported by ten pillars. A semilunar 
window, placed dose to the ceiling, immediately under each 


arch, lights the room. The floor, the arches, and the pil- 
lars, which are from seventy to eighty feet high, are of 
cast-iron. Around the hall, which has the form of a pa- 
rallelogram, with the two ends slightly circular, runs a 
wide gallery in an elliptical ascending spiral line, but with 
so gentle an inclination, that on entering the room in the 
centre at one of its extremities, and nearly on a level with 
the middle height of the apartment, the eye catches not at 
first this singular disposition of the galleries. The floor and 
railing of the galleries are likewise of cast-iron. On these 
ascending galleries, five ranges of shelves are placed allround, 
one above the other, containing strong pasteboard boxes, 
having the appearance of very thick quarto volumes, in 
which the various papers and documents are kept. On the 
back of these upright boxes, or cartons^ such systematic in- 
dications of their contents are written as will enable a clerk, 
having the catalogue, to find any given document in an in- 
stant. Behind this first range of shelves, is a narrow, and 
necessarily rather a dark passage all round, enabling a per- 
son to have access to a second similarly disposed range of 
shelves. In this Incombustible Hall of the military ar^ 
chives, all documents relative to military subjects from 
the year 171 9» that is, from the infant years of the power 
of European Russia to its present adult stage, are care- 
fully preserved. The different years are marked in the 
corresponding divisions on a conspicuous tablet, and each 
box bears the numbers afiixed to the documents it contains, 
as well as the date of the year or years to which they 
refer. The whole presents a contrivance of great inge- 
nuity, and does great credit first to Signor Rossi, the 
architect, who devised the construction of the room, and 
next, to the individual who arranged in such admirable 
order a mass of written information embracing a period of 
more than a century. The convenience of attaining the 


highest part of the building in search of a document, by 
an ascent so insensible that one scarcely perceives it, naust 
be of the greatest importance to men of business. Besides 
this advantage, I understand that persons employed in 
the establishment, and who are thus compelled to lead a 
sedentary life, find health and relaxation in the permission 
of promenading up and down about a dozen times at a 
turn, this spiral road of iron. 

Before quitting this Institution, the examination of 
which had occupied me already some hours, I was re- 
quested to visit some of the dormitories and refectories of 
the non-commissioned officers and privates who live in the 
house. These are on the ground-floor, divided into apart- 
ments, with arched ceilings, and most solidly built, con- 
taining from ten to twenty beds each. The utmost clean* 
liness prevailed throughout, and the whole appeared well 
ventilated. Adjoining each division of the dormitories, 
is the kitchen and eating-room, in whiqh parties of twenty 
persons dine at one time, such parties relieving each other 
for that purpose in the duties to be performed up stairs. 
There is contiguous to every dormitory a room with a 
small collection of medicines for tlie use of the sick, who 
are not ill enough to require being removed to one of the 
military hospitals. The medicines are administered under 
the direction of the medical officers. 

About a thousand people live in tha. house, exclusively 
of one hundred and thirty women, and from forty to 
fifty children. But the total number of persons actually 
employed in the whole establishment, including all the 
officers of rank, amounts to twelve hundred, several of 
whom, particularly the latter, do not reside in the 

I understood that the present arrangement of this de^ 
partment is due to General Zackrevsky, now Governor- 


General of Finland ; and to Prince Volkonsky, when 
Major-Grenenil, and chief of the Etat Major. 

Although the expense of so vast an establishment must 
1^ necessity be very considerable ; yet its utility and pur- 
pose are considered su£Scient to justify the amount of 
money expended. The Government, however, has devised 
an expedient for liquidating part, at least, of the expense 
incurred; namely, by executing commissions of private 
individuals connected with the surveying of estates, drawl- 
ing up plans, measuring lauds, printing and engraving 
them, and above all, by the si^le of maps, many of which 
are purposely constructed for the use of the superior 
schools, and public places of education. These various 
sources of revenue had already produced up to the time of 
my visit, and in the diort period of the existence of the 
establishment, upwards of a million of roubles towards 
defraying the charges of the institution. 

The attributes of this great military institution are va- 
rious and important, and include the consideration of cri- 
minal military questions. One of its essential component 
parts is the General Staff proper, divided into a depart- 
ment of inspection, and another of criminal jurisdiction 
(oourt wM^yti^^ ?) placed under the direction of the Ge^ 
neral de Service. To the same iii9tkiit]oa> belongs the pro^ 
visioning of troops, which is confided to a General Officer 
al the bead of a commission ; and to it are subordinate the 
Quarter-Master-General'sDepartment, and the General Staff 
of the Artillery, as well as that of tl^e Engineers, both of 
which are under the command of the Grand-duke Michael. 

General Diebitch, the supreme head of the institution, 
waits in that character on the Emperor every day, from 
seven to nine ; and as a Minister, twice a week at another 
hour of the day, for the purpose of receiving bis com- 
mands. He is also commissioned to draw up the general 


order of the day issued by the Emperor, which appeared 
in the Russian language every day during my stay at St. 
Petersburgh, and even while his Majesty was at Riga, (his 
orders being transmitted from thence regularly,) and is a 
sort of Military Gazette, containing promotions, ^changes, 
deaths ; the passing, confirmation, and execution of sen- 
tences, &c. &c. 

The chateau, in which the unfortunate Paul terminated 
his days in so tragic a manner, has never been inhabited 
since by Imperial persons. Its stately rooms have been 
dismantled, the costly furniture is removed, and the scene 
of the foul deed barred for ever from the eye of man, by 
the walling up of the doors of the room. This castle, for 
it had indeed the aspect of one, to judge from a copy of 
the original drawing and plans of Brenno, given to me by 
his pupil Rossi, is not without its merits as an object of 
architecture. It has a most striking appearance, and if 
Kotzebue's description of its interior be not exaggerated, 
it must have been not unlike the gorgeous Palace of the 
King of Nineveh. The fortifications which surrounded 
it have disappeared; and a stately pile which has only 
been raised a quarter of a century, with a solidity that 
seemed intended to insure a perpetual residence to a 
succession of Emperors, is now converted into a public 
Military School for the education of Engineer officers. 
It may be supposed that few public colleges, either in 
Russia or elsewhere, present such magnificent accommoda- 
tions for their inmates as the Palace ot St. Michael, with 
a view of which I present my readers. 

This castle is now called ** Hotel du G^nie,'' and the 
establishment which it contains bears the name of ** Ecole 
superieure du Genie." This school is divided into five 
classes ; two upper and lower for the officer-students, 
and an upper, middle, and lower class for the canducteurs. 


This last class is again subdi videdinto two sections. Every 
branch of knowledge requisite for an engineer officer is 
taught in this establishment. Those among the officer- 
students, who are instructed at the expense of the crown, 
have moreover a salary, and an allowance for lodging, 
according to their rank. The cadets or conducteurs are 
wholly kept at the expense of the Crown. Young noble- 
men, or the children of free parents, are admitted between 
the ages of fourteen and eighteen years, and must be of 
known moral character, intelligent, and sufficiently well 
educated. The admission takes place early in October, 
when the candidates are examined, and those found qa* 
pable of being admitted are distributed among the three 
last classes. To be admitted even in the lowest class, it 
is indispensable that the candidate shall be well versed in 
the catechism — that he shall possess some general notions 
of universal history and geography — know arithmetic 
thoroughly, as well as the elements of algebra and 
geometry — and be acquainted with the Russian language, 
so as to be able not only to speak it, but to write it cor- 
rectly ; besides a sufficient knowledge both of French and 
Grerman, so as to be able to translate from either of those 
languages into Russian. An examination takes place at 
the termination of every scholastic year. Those of th^ 
students who have completed their education in the class 
of o£5cers, are transferred to the engineer corps, or to the 
battalions of sappers and pioneers, with the rank of 
ensign or siib-Heutenant, according to their degree of in- 
struction. The time spent in this establishment, sipaply 
in the acquisition of useful knowledge, is reckoned as 
active service to the officers, whether in respect to a pen- 
sion, or to admission, by seniority, into the orders of knight- 
hcx>d of St. George and St. Vladimir. Although the 
greater number of Hives belong to the class of nobility, yet 



children of officers, and people employed under Grovem- 
ment are admitted, and those of merchants of the two 
first guilds or classes also, provided they exhibit a certi- 
ficate of having been struck ofi^the list of merchants. 

The students are dressed in a. sort of uniform, and per- 
form all their movements, d la militaire. Much attention 
is paid to their morals and sti^te of health, as well as to 
personal comfort Before leaving the establishment, they 
are expected to fortify, according to the strictest and moat 
modern principles, a piece of ground selected for that 
purpose* In this the Hives are much assisted by the 
several fine models of every description of fortification 
contained in the model-room belonging to the institutidny 
which models take to pieces in order to show the mode 
of construction in its minutest details. 

This establishment is under the immediate orders of the 
Grand-duke Michael, who pays great attention to it, and 
occupies much of his time in superintending its various 

Not far from the Neva, and in that part of the quarter 
called the Litteinaya, which lies opposite to the district of 
Vibourg, half-way between the summer gardens and the 
Taurida palace, are the new and the old Arsenals, and 
the Foundery. The two former buildings stand opposite 
to each other, forming of themselves a very handsome 
street, which is terminated by the third building above- 
mentioned. The new Arsenal is of a recent date, com- 
pared to its pendant. It was erected in the reign of 
Alexander. The old one, on the contrary, was b^un 
under Elizabeth, and completed in the time of Catherine. 
As to the Foundery, its semi.Grothic, or tudesque style, 
combined with great solidity, sufficiently proclaims the 
date of its construction to have been in the reign of Peter 
the Great. I forget who the architect of the new Arsenal 


was ; but whoever he may have been, this building alone 
would be sufficient to establish his character. The finest 
proportions, with that grandeur and amenity of design which 
so well suit Grecian architecture, belong indisputably to 
this edifice. 

In length it measures five hundred and four feet, besides 
the two lateral outbuildings. In its general elevation we 
remark a centre composed of a rusticated portico resting on 
the basement story, surmounted by an octostyle Doric por- 
tico, terminated with antse, and supporting a rich entabla- 
ture, on the frieze of which is a beautiful running bas-relief, 
consisting of groups of trophies. The rest of the building, 
on each side of this centre, consists of two stories, both rus- 
ticated with horizontal lines only, and pierced with seven 
large windows^ of which, those of the principal stories are 
semicircular. A colossal gate opens at each end, between two 
fine Doric pillars and bold piers, covered by an entablature, 
of great solidity, bearing a rich bas-relief composed of milU 
tary weapons. A running frieze j similarly carved, extends 
along the building between these terminating gates and the 
centre, over the top of which is erected a gigantic eagle in 
bronze, rising, bet ween groups of military trophies also in 
bronze of beautiful workmanship. On each side of it is 
a pile of cannon-balls, and a little farther, bundles of 
warlike weapons. Between each window of the basement 
story, and on a running pedestal, is placed a ^eld-piece, 
and a large mortar at each end of the building. 

In its interior, the New Arsenal presents two continuous 
galleries, which are separated by a rotunda in the centre of 
the building, the roof of which is supported by a dou- 
ble range of columns, grouped two and two. Seventy 
thousand stands of arms are here deposited, and a variety 
of other military weapons and trophies, captured by Rus- 
aa during the different wars in which she has been en- 

6 2 


gaged since the foundation of St. Petersburgh. The various 
batteries of field-pieces, of brass, found in this collection, 
form a very striking sight. 

The Old Arsenal forms a quadrangle of three stories, is 
built with a profunon of ornaments and rich accessories, 
which characterise the public edifices of the time of Eliza- 
beth and Catherine, and has altogether a very imposing ap- 
pearance. It has a magnificent portico, and the roof bears 
its frophies and allegorical groups like the other edifice. 

Aitaong the multitude of curious objects to be found in 
these establishments, there is a gun which attracts atten* 
tipn for its extraordinary size, and the historical recollee* 
tions attached to it. It measures twenty-one feet in length, 
carries a sixty-eight pound ball, and is said to weigh I7,4S6 
pounds of metal. It was cast in the reign of Ivan-Vassilie- 
vitch. At the taking of Elbing it fell into the hands of 
the Swedes, and Charles XII. ordered it to be sent to 
Stockholm. Peter the Great could ill bear the thought of 
such an important national trophy remaining in the hands of 
his enemy ; when a stranger named Primm, honoured by 
many favours of that monarch, and de^rous to testify to him 
his gratitude, resolved to deprive Sweden of this formidable 
weapon^ After innumerable sacrifices and a great deal 
of trouble, he at last succeeded in gaining pops^ssjon of it ; 
but in order to conceal his generous theft, he was compelled 
to saw the gun into several pieces, and in that state con-- 
veyed it to St. Petersburgh. Peter erected an equestrian 
statue in bronze to the stranger, who refused to accept any 
other recompense.* 

Here are assembled the rich armours of the Teutonic 
Knights, removed from the arsenal of Riga, and transported 
to St. Petersburgh after the taking of that city. These 

* See '^ Six Mois en Russie^ par Mons. Aucelot.*' 


nrsenals also contain a marble statue of Catherine, and the 
travelling as well as the state-carriages of Peter. At the 
back of the former a piachine is attached, intended to mark 
the distances performed by the carriage on the road. 

The machinery for boring brass cannon is under the di- 
rection of an English artificer, who is said to have consi- 
derably improved it. Of the foundry I shall not attempt 
to say a word, as its object cannot interest the majority of 
my readers. 

In speaking, in the course of the preceding chapter, of 
s(»ue of the departments of the Imperial Governmient, I had 
occaaicm to mention what are called Les Colleges. Most 
of these branches of the public administration had, or have, 
their appropriate buildings, one or two of which are very 
fine specimens of architecture. The College of Foreign 
Affairs, for instance, situated on the English Quay, adjoin- 
ing a beautiful structure which serves as the residence of 
the Minister of Marine, and the House of the Department 
of the Minister of the Interior on the Moika, are as fair 
examples of chaste modem architecture as one can expect 
to see in any capital. The Colleges of War, Marine, Jus- 
tice, and Trade, have eacli their separate buildings. To 
some are attached handsome dwelling-houses for the heads 
of tbe department, others are simply public-buildings for 
transacting the affairs of that branch of the public service, 
the title of which they bear. Their interior exhibits no- 
thing particular beyond handsome rooms, a multitude of 
officers and clerks, and the same degree of order, discipline, 
and cleanliness which I remarked in every institution be* 
longing to the Imperial Government. 

The general business of the Post-office department is 
carried on in a very large and fine building, situated not 
far from the Isaac-square, and in the immediate neighbour- 
hood of the banks, the Lombard, and the residence of the 


principal merchants, to whom the privilege is accorded of 
sending their letters till a later hour, and of rec^ving those 
addressed to them earlier, than other j^eople. The Russian 
Empire is divided into six Post districts, each containing 
several Governments. Over these presides a Post-master- 
general, who is at present Prince Galitzine. To each Post* 
district is appointed a director, whose office answers to what 
iaEngland would be styled a deputy post-master. St. Peters- 
burgh is the chief town of a Post-district, containing six or 
seven Governments. The director, or deputy post-master of 
this district, resides in a part of the house to which I have 
alluded, and in it also are the different offices required for 
so vast an establishment, both with respect to the general 
and the district-director of the Post. The resident-direc- 
tor in St. Petersburgh occupies several handsome apart- 
ments, in which he receives company in the most hospita- 
ble and kind manner imaginable, every Thursday evening. 
Few persons have better deserved the honourable distinc- 
tion which the Sovereign has bestowed on him, than Mods. 
Boulgakoff, who has not only introduced several striking 
improvements in hh department, but is at this moment 
engaged in forming a plan for rendering that establishment 
more effective, beneficial to the public, and productive to 
the crown. For this purpose, a well-informed and pro* 
perly qualified person from his office, has been sent to Ber- 
lin and London, with instructions to examine and study 
wdl the respective post-«8tablishments of those capitals, and 
repbrt the result of his observations, from which it is ex* 
pected that several valuable and useful hints may be taken, 
applicable to the Post-offices of St. Petersburgh. The 
gentleman who was deputed to proceed to Berlin, had 
already made his report ; but very little it appears could be 
culled from it suitable to the nature of the case. The im- 
provements indeed must come from this country, where the 


system, as conducted by Sir F. Freeling, is justly consi- 
dered a master-piece of administration. The London Grene- 
nd Post-office is certainly one of the largest* as well as the 
most important establishment of the kind in Europe, and 
its arrangements have been procured, well examined, and 
appreciated, and, I have no doubt, will be properly re- 
ported by the person who has now been in London several 
months for that purpose, and who is about to leave it on 
his return to St. Petersburgh. 

It certainly redounds much to the credit of those who 
acceded to the request of the Russian Government, and, 
with a liberality worthy of imitation, granted every faci- 
lity to Mr. P — , that this gentleman has been enabled, 
from a daily attendance of some . hours at and within the 
different oflBces, and under, I am told. Sir Francis's own 
kind direction and instruction, to make himself completely 
master of the whole plan, part of which alone, even, would, 
if adopted, prove highly beneficial to the Russian Govern- 
ment and the nation in general. 

At present it is admitted on all hands in the Russian 
capital, that the mode of doing business at the Post-office 
io St* Petersburgh is not the best that could be adopted. 
To speak on one point only, viz. the distribution of letters 
over the town, one of the standing regulations is, that let- 
ters shall be delivered within twenty-four hours after their 
arrival ; but even with so great a latitude, the delivery is 
often much later, and in general irregular. One of the rea- 
sons for this delay is, that instead of regular letter-carriers, 
persons axe employed in distributing the letters about the 
town, who perform, also, the duties of travelling postilions or 
messengers to the General Post-office, and are therefore for 
ever diaoging— some of these, indeed, are at times appmnted 
to tlua <^oe who are not at all acquainted with the dty. 
Another reason for die delay is, the complicated and tire- 


some ordeal which a letter has to go through, of multiplied 
registering, stamping, taxing, weighing, &c., involving the 
necessity of employing by far too large a number of people ; 
an inconvenience of which the Resident Director appeared 
fully sensible. 

The postage of letters is regulated by weight as well as 
by distance. The minimum weight is a lot^ or half an 
ounce, no matter whether made up by one, two, or even 
three distinct letters, placed within each other. A letter 
of this weight is charged twelve kopeeks for the first 
hundred versts, and four kopeeks additional for every suc- 
ceeding 100 versts, as far as 1500. Beyond this distance, 
for every 100 versts, as far as S,100, the charge is two 
kopeeks above the charge paid for 1,500 versts; conse- 
quently, the charge for the S,100 versts will be one 
rouble (lO^d.) ; and, for the same sum, a letter, weighing 
half an ounce, may be sent to any part of the Empire, no 
matter what the distance may be beyond the S,100 versts. 
Every fraction of weight, however small, above half a lot, 
is considered as a double lot, or one ounce, and charged 

The conveyance of letters, in many of the directions of 
the Empire, is as regular and as rapid as in any other 
country in Europe^ The post from Odessa is of this 
class. I have repeatedly known letters to have been re- 
ceived at the appointed time, and in the course of six days 
only, from thence, the distance being upwards of two thou- 
sand versts. The same, I may observe, of the posts to 
and from Moscow, Wilna, Riga, and other places. This is 
not the case, however, in regard to many other places. 

Much has been said of the breach of confidence which, 
it is presumed, takes place at the Post-office of St. Peters* 
burgh, by the letters being opened on some occasions. 
This practice has unfortunately been too lightly resorted 



• _ 

to by more than one Government on the Continent ; nor is 
it likely that, as long as the principle of modern diplomacy 
continues to be followed, of endeavouring, by all meansy to 
leam what an enemy may be plotting, the practice in ques- 
tion will be entirely abandoned. With respect to the Postr 
office of St. Petersburgh, I certainly cannot affirm that the 
practice is or is not commonly adopted ; but this I may 
confidently assert, that while I was staying in that city, I 
sent and received through that office letters to and from my 
friends, on many occasions, which had never been violated, 
nor had any attempt been made to that effect : and, more- 
over, that several of my acquaintances, resident in St. 
Petersburgh, assured me that in no one instance had any of 
their letters been opened. A British naval officer, who has 
published soAe very interesting remarks on St. Petersburgh, 
has made the same candid statement in regard to his own 
letters, although he repJBats the general story of the fre- 
quent violation of private letters at the Post-office. The 
twct 18, that in all such general criminations of foreign Go- 
vernments, there are, at times, various degrees of exagge- 
ration, which certainly lose nothing by being frequently 
repteted, although uttered without any intention to injure 
the fair name of the nation accused. Much in the same 
way that a very recent traveller to St. Petersburgh has en- 
deavoured to convey to his readers an idea of the dreadful 
alarm which the police of that city is calculated to excite in 
the mind of every stranger, by relating how distressed and 
agitated his landlady had become for his safety, from an 
idea that the police might pay them a visit, and carry away 
her guest, in consequence of his writing a great deal in his 
room 1 Now, how stood the case with regard to myself.'^ 
It was known that I visited every establishment and saw 
a great variety of people ; also, that I took notes with- 
out end, with a view to publish an account of the place. 


(for I openly avowed such an intention from the first,) 
and that I scribbled in my room daily several hours to- 
gether, and particularly at the ** dreaded hour of night, 
mother of plots and mischief;'' and yet no trouble came 
upon me, nor was the slightest hint given me that it 
was unsafe to proceed. My apartments were oft^i left 
open; my papers I never took tHe trouble of locking 
up, and left them frequently on the table ; and yet not a 
single domiciliary visit or intrusion occurred. I 
had also, with a friend, engaged one of those Valets de 
place^ whom the traveller in question designates generally 
*^ as spies, uniformly in the pay of the police;" but the 
only remark I could make respecting the man was, that 
he did not deserve his bread, if in such a pay, since he gave 
himself as little trouble as possible about us or our move- 
ments. What conclusion, therefore, should we draw from 
two such contradictory statements ? Why, that it is unjust 
as well as unsafe to hazard general assertions of a crimi- 
natory nature against any Government or system of govern- 
ment, upon a slight ground, or perhaps upon no other than 
that of having heard a third person make the assertion. 
It may be said, that as a resident in the house of a Russian 
nobleman, I was quite safe on the score of such surveil* 
lance of the police, as that complained of by the traveller 
alluded to ; but on this point it may be observed, that as 
that circumstance had not saved me from having to go 
through every part of the formalities expected of every 
stranger by the police, it is to be presumed that it would 
not have protected me against any other measure of 
vigilance which the police might have deemed it necessary 
to take on my account, had such been the general, and, as 
the traveller alluded to insinuates, the invariable practice 
of that body. I do not wish to be understood to eu- 
logize those systems of political police which are so ge- 
neral abroad ; for, Heaven knows ! they are troublesome 


enough ; but I wish simply to assure travellers who may 
be desiious of visiting St. Petersburgh, that ^^ things are 
not always as bad as represented.'^ 

There is a curious circumstance connected with the 
Post-office, which I must not omit to mention. Any sub- 
ject of his Imperial Majesty may address his Sovereign 
through the Post-office. For this purpose, the letter for 
the Emperor must be put in at the Post-office of Tzarscoe- 
f do ; and it is said, that none dares either suppress or open 
such letters, but that they must be safely conveyed to the 
hands of the Emperor himself. I believe that this system 
was commenced in the time of the late Emperor Alexander. 

The revenue of the Post-office amounts, one year with 
another, to about twelve millions of roubles, five or six of 
which are expended in supporting the establishment. This 
revenue is derived not only from the postage of letters, but 
firom the conveyance of parcels, which latter have increased 
to such a number, that the business of the office is often re- 
tarded by attending to them, and an intention exists of 
suppressing this branch of the estabhshment. As stage- 
coaches or diligences have been established on many 
roads at present, it would be a source of encouragement 
to the proprietors if they were made to carry parcels upon 
fixed and moderate rates of transport. 

The largest source of the Post-office revenue, however, 
is the conveyance of money, which it undertakes both on 
account of Government and private individuals. The lat- 
ter, on declaring the amount, pay a duty of one per cent. 
upon it, if the place to which it is to be forwarded exceeds a 
distance of five hundred versts, and only one-half per cent, if 
within that distance. The Government is charged the same, 
but the transaction between it and the office is merely nominal 
on this point, as Government in fact' does not pay the 
actual amount of duty for the capital which it circulates 
through the Empire by means of that office, but is de- 


bited for that amount against the same sum entered on 
the credit side of the department, as part of the revenue 
which it would have produced, had the money actually 
been paid. I have been informed, on very good authority, 
that the amount of private monies which circulate through 
the Post-office, is generally from five to six hundred mil- 
lions of roubles annually; and that although the Office 
guarantees for its safe conveyance, that department has 
seldom, if ever, sustained any loss in consequence. 

As for the post-horses department, which is under the 
direction of the General Post-office, I believe that no net 
revenue is obtained from it. I have stated. that posting is 
very cheap in Russia. In some parts of the Empire it is 
even lower than I have asserted, being five, instead of 
eight kopeeks for each horse ; Government, therefore, un- 
dertakes to indemnify the post-masters ; and for this pur- 
pose a post-horse duty is levied throughout those parts of 
the Empire in Europe, in which posting is established, 
amounting to eleven millions of roubles annually. The 
Post-office does not make a regular annual return of its re* 
venue to the Treasury ; but supplies from time to time sums 
out of its funds on the demand of Grovemment, and is called 
upon to present a " Rendiconto*^ every three or four years. 

A foreigner on arriving in St. Petersburgh, and observing 
its imposing exterior, its occasional outward show of bustle, 
and the appareiltly great distances of its different parts, is 
surprised to learn that there is no petite poste^ (two-penny 
post) ; but three reasons were given me for this striking 
difierence between the Russian. capital and those of other 
nations, which I thought plausible. But with respect ta 
the environs of St. Petersburgh, which in the summer 
season are so thickly peopled with families from the 
capital, to whom -it must be a great object to be able 
to send and receive letters, at least twice daily, to and 


from their friends in town, the reasons in question are not 
applicable; and it is to be expected that such a daily 
conveyance of letters, with a moderate postage charged on 
them, will be found desirable and expedient hereafter. 

Sir James Wylie, whom I shall have pleasure in intro^ 
ducing more particularly to my readers hereafter, favoured 
me with a letter to the commandant of the citadel, situated, 
as I before observed, on a small island in the Neva, ex- 
actly opposite the Winter Palace. This edifice, which, 
even after having satisfied his curiosity with Imperial 
palaces, deserves to engage the attention of the stranger, 
was erected by Peter, and may with justice be considered 
as the first foundation of the city of St. Petersburgh. 

It is fortified by five regular bastions, which range 
around the island in question to the extent of not quite 
an English mile. On the land-side the bastions are mere 
ramparts covered with grass^ and communication exists 
on this part, by means of drawbridges, with the Island of 
St. Petersburgh, on which are some corresponding forti- 
fications opposite to the citadel. On the river-side it is 
surrounded by walls, cased with granite, in the centre of 
which is a large gate, or sallyport, used particularly when 
persons visit the citadel by water, or over the ice. What- 
ever may have been the importance attached to this for- 
tress in the time of Peter, it is manifest that at present 
it can neither serve for the defence of the city, nor defend 
itself in case of an attack, an event not likely to take place. 
Its utility, therefore, is confined to more subordinate 
points ; that of forming a striking and handsome object 
of embellishment to the river and neighbouring parts 
of the town ; and of containing the Imperial Mint, as well 
as the church in which are deposited the mortal remains 
of the sovereigns of the country. 

To the latter establishment I proceeded with Count 



StroganoflP, one of the Emperor^s aid-de-camps, who had 
obtained the necessary permission a day or two before, 
and had apprized the officers of the establishment of oor 
intended visit. Count StroganoiF is not the direct de- 
scendant of the nobleman of that name, whose love of the 
Fine Arts and well-known collection of valuable paintings 
are among the least distinguishing features of his life. 
The direct male branch of Ifhat nobleman is now quite ex- 
tinct ; but he is a son of Baron Stroganoff, who with all his 
family have been lately raised to the rank of Counts ; he 
not long since married a most amiable lady, daughter of 
ib» President of the Imperial Council, Count Kotchou- 
bey. The young Count StroganoiF unites to a very 
striking personal appearance the manners of a highly 
educated individual. He is much attached to science, which 
he has assiduously and successfully cultivated^ particu- 
larly mineralogy and geology. In visiting, therefore, the 
Mint with him, I had the good fortune of being vrith one, 
who brought to the task of inquiring into the operation 
of coining, feelings congenial with my own, on the subject 
of the application of chemistry to the useful arts. The 
Count was also of great assistance in interpreting to me 
the descriptions of the different processes followed in this 
establishment, given by one of its superior officers, who 
understood, but could not speak French, as well as his 
answers to my questions. 

We were first introduced into the Assay Room, on the 
ground floor, which, considering the value in gold it con- 
tains, I was surprised to see unguarded by any sentinel at 
the door. We had, however, passed through some guards 
in an ante-chamber. Some large vessels, made of thick 
wrought iron, containing the ingots of gold as they arrive 
from the mines in Siberia are kept in this room. The 
amount of this metal received thence annually at the 


Mint is S50 poods, or 144,000 ounces ; that of silver is 
1200 poods ; from which latter quantity twenty-five poods 
moie of gold are obtained. In the ingots of Siberian gold 
there is generally found in the SdO poods about twenty 
poods of silver. The gold ingots from Siberia are one foot 
long, and four inches and a half wide and deep. These 
ingots bear a particular stamp ; tjiey contain always a cer* 
tain quantity of silver, which it is the object of the opera- 
tion peifonned in this room to separate. 

The proportions of silver added to the gold ingot to be 
parted, in order to accomplish that process, are, three parts 
to one' of gold. These are melted together, broken into 
small rough pieces, and treated by aquafortis, which di^ 
solves the silver, and the solution is decanted. From this 
solution the silver is thrown down in a metallic state by clean 
kuninse of copper being immersed in the decanted liquid. 

The gold, thus freed of its union with the principal part 
of the silver, is washed with sulphuric acid, to clear it of 
even the most minute particle of that alloy — when it ap* 
pears under the form of a dull yellow earthy substance, 
Hke the native gold earth found near Perm. This siib- 
stance is pure gold, susceptible of the finest polish by fric- 
tion ; and being melted in large crucibles, forms the ingots 
of pure gold, fit for the purpose of coining, which we saw 
in considerable number in another part of the room. These 
ingots weigh three poods each, 1728 ounces. In passing 
through the operation of melting and casting into ingots, 
the metal suffers no loss whatever. 

The resulting solutions ci both the sulphate and nitrate 
of alver are treated in an adjoining room, by means of large 
bars of copper immersed in them, and the silver is thus col- 
lected« The silver, as received from Siberia, is cupelled in 
lai^ furmoes with lead, as usual. The smelting of both 
the oxyde of gaid and silver, obtained by the preliminary 


operations before-mentioned, is carried on in a suite of large 
rooms adjoining the former. Large crucibles of graphite, 
covered with clay, are employed for the latter piu-pose. 
These are broken after the smelting; during which opera- 
tions, it is found that the metal has gained twenty poods in 
1600. In order to lose none of the silver, the fragments of 
the crucibles, with what \^as been scraped off them, are re- 
duced to impalpable powder, and made into an amalgam 
with mercury by being rapidly turned round in cylindrical, 
horizontal, or vertical boxes. The slags are smelted, accord- 
ing to an old practice, in combination with lead, and the li- 
quid metal let out in streams, from time to time, through an 
opening at the lower part, and on one side of the furnace, 
whence it runs into moulds ; and lastly, the separation of 
the lead from the silver takes places by combustion, in 
large draught-smelting-fumaces. The mercury for the 
amalgam is brought into the market at fifty roubles the 
pood (thirteen-pence-halfpenny a pound), and is therefore 
a very expensive article. 

Nothing can be more injurious to health, or more suffo- 
cating, than the process of mercurializing the silver, and 
burning the slags, or the combustion of lead. The men em- 
ployed in these rooms are frequently changed ; but a prac- 
tice exists of sending for a few days refractory and disobe- 
dient servants, or those whose conduct requires correction, to 
serve gratuitously in these rooms, under the strict 8urveil» 
lance of the people regularly employed in the Mint ; and 
the impression made on the culprits by this punishment is 
such, that they seldom give cause afterwards for being 
sent thither a second time. 

The alloy for the silver coinage employed in Russia is 
12| Zolotnik of copper to one Russian pound of silver ; 
and that for the gold coinage is 8 Zolotnik of copper to a 
Russian pound of standard gold, or one to twelve. The 
copper u,sed for the purpose, which is derived from the 


Siberian mines, contains always a small proportion of silver. 
In England, the alloy for gold coinage consists of eleven 
parts of standard gold, of the specific gravity of 19, and 
ODe of copper ; fifteen pounds troy of which alloy are 
coined into 700 sovereigns. 

The place in which the alloyed silver is laminated, is a very 
extensive apartment on a higher floor, with a gallery aroimd 
it, where there are several tables at which a number of boys 
are employed in sorting, filing, and weighing the pieces 
before they are either polished or coined. In the body of 
the room, and in one adjoining, the operations of drawing 
out between two cylinders the laminae of silver of the pro- 
per breadth, and of cutting out from them the pieces, or 
disks, for the difierent coins, are performed by appropriate 
machinery, moved by a steam-engine of sixty horse power 
kept in the very highest order. In this stage of the opera- 
tion, the milling of the edges of the pieces i8 performed. 

The young boys engaged in all the minor operations, are 
the children of the men employed in every branch of the 
ICnt. Invalid soldiers were originally appointed to this 
department; but their o£Fispring having been brought up 
to succeed them, a generation of men, exclusively attached 
to this public establishment, has been formed from father 
to Boi^ who are called, *' Les hommes de la Monnoie.'' 

The process of scouring the pieces with sand, for which 
purpose they are arranged close to each other, in holes on 
a lai^ board ; and of washing them with weak sulphuric 
add, after which, they are placed in rollers of cloth, and 
dried in an oven, takes place in a separate room on the 
basement story. The pieces are afterwards re-weighed, in 
order to ascertain if they have a weight of 4^ zol. ; in doing 
which, the weight of four pieces is taken as a criterion, and 
not that of any individual piece, although it may be de- 
ficient in or exceed the standard weight. 

It is not true that the whole establishment is under the 



direction of a Scotchman, as stated by a recent traveller. 
Mr. Duncan simply superintends the machinery and its 
use, and has the charge of the three steam-engines. The 
principal chemical operations for preparing the precious 
metals, are carried on by Russians. 

The final operation, that of coining, or stamfnng the 
pieces, is performed by means of six beautiful madiines, 
set in motion by a steam-engine procured from England. 
The pieces are not put in by hand, or pushed in with the 
finger, as was the case till within the last few years in Londcm, 
but are thrown forward under the die by a very neat ccmtri- 
vance added to the machine. They have had this improve- 
ment for the last twenty years ; and I recollect, when visit- 
ing the Mint at the Tower in 1815, with Canova, that we 
remarked the danger attending the operation of pushing 
with the finger the piece under the die while it kept wee- 
ing rapidly up "and down, as was the case at that time. 

We understood that very little work was then going on. 
They were coining some thousands of silver pieces of the 
value of twenty-five kopeeks, a new ccin^ and the fourth of 
a silver rouble, equal to one paper rouUe, which is very 
neat. The silver rouble coined under the two late £o^ 
perors as well as his present Majesty, instead of the head 
of the Sovereign, has a large Russian eagle, finely executed, 
and the value of the coin marked on the dbvene. Paul, I 
believe, was the first who ordered that substitution. How- 
ever, the Mint is not at all times so idle. From the aooonnt 
given me, it appears that in the space of a 3rear aod ten 
months, ending May 18127, they had corned 268,277^889 
roubles (£10,068,608) in gold ; and 28,018,777 roubles, 
(1,000^59) in silver. 

The copper money, the first introduction of which in 
Russia took place under Peter the Great, in 1704^ i$ not 
coined at the St. Petersburgh Mint, but at Ekathe- 
rineburgi Ijorsk^ and Souzoun. The entire quantity of 


money, of every description, coined and put in circulation 
from 1718 to 1818, amounts, according to Weydemeyer, to 
900,000,000 of roubles. A recent ukase of the Emperor 
states, that in consequence of rich mines of platina having 
be^i discovered in the mountains of Oural, a new. coin made 
of that metal will be jput in circulation throughout the em- 
pire. A number of three-rouble pieces have been struck, 
and will be tried as an experiment. Their currency is not, 
at first, to be rigorously enforced, nor will their exportation 
be prohibited as in the case of gold or silver coin ; but fal- 
sification will be punished with the same penalties which are 
attached to the falsification of the other coins of the State. 

I shall conclude my account of the edifices and insti- 
tutions connected with the Imperial, political, and military 
adminiatnition of the Government, by stating the total 
nuiaber to be found in St. Petersburgh, in addition 
to those of which I have either given a description, or 
to which I have alluded, and which, in one way or other, 
are considered as Government buildings; almost all of 
them being more or less of modem and striking architec- 
ture, especially the barracks; and oonstrueted either of 
fftoae, or of bricks stuccoed ail over. The following list, as 
wiK be seen, does not include the ho^itals, colleges, sdiools^ 
or diaritable establishments of any description, or any of 
the edifices for the residence or education of the clergy. 

Buildings for purposes especially belonging to or 
ecMinected with the CroMrn, not enumerated be- 
fore . . .11 

Buildings of magnitude, and for particular depart- 
ments of public service not enumerated before . S4 

Military Barracks . . ^ 

Exercise or riding-houses> and other military 
buildings . .10 

Houses belonging to the Police . .15 

Government Magazines . .22 

Total 108 




Imperial Building! and Institutions connected with Science and the 
Fine Arts. — - The Imperial Academy of Sciences. — Its Constitu- 
tion. — Contributions to Science. —Great and Illustrious Members 
of that Academy.— Monsieur Ouvaroff^ the President. — The Ob- 
servatory. — The Gottorp Globe. — The Zoological Museum. — 
The Cabinet of Mineralogy. — The Manmioth. — Native Iron of 
PaUas. *- Anatomical Collections. — Cabinet of Peter the Great. 
— Cabinet of Curiosities. — The Insects and dry Plants. — The 
Museum of Medals and Asiatic Museum. »- The Egyptian Mu- 
seum. — Grand General Meeting to commemorate the Conclusion 
of the first Century since the Foundation of the Academy. — Visit 
of the Empress-mother to the Academy, at the beginning and end 
of the second half of that Century. — The Secular MedaL — Print- 
ing-press of the Academy. — The Author's Public Lecture at the 
Academy. — Presented with the Secular Medal, and made a Mem- 
ber of that Society. 

After all, it is neither by the number and splendour (}f 
Imperial palaces, nor by all the military pomp of the finest 
army in the world, that we can judge of the present mea- 
sure of civilization in Russia. Peter the Great, who had 
from experience gained in the course of his ^' voyages 
and travels of discovery^* acquired the conviction that 
science, literature, and the fine arts can alone advance a 
nation to that rank which marks the superiority <^ refined 
over uncultivated nature, while in the act of founding his 


new capital, and almost before there were houses built or 
men to inhabit them, made ample provisions for the intro- 
duction of science into his dominions. 

In the course of his second journey into Holland and 
France, in the years 1708 and 1717, Peter paid great 
attention to the state of science and the fine arts in those 
countries. He examined cabinets of natural history, as 
well as museums and galleries of paintings. Two of the 
former, in particular, which enjoyed great reputation in 
the scientific world at Amsterdam, and which had attracted 
general attention, seem to have made a deep impression 
on him. These were the Anatomical Cabinet of Ruysch, 
a celebrated anatomist, who had worked at it for the space 
of forty years, and the Zoological Collection of Seba, an 
Apothecary, containing almost every species of animals 
then known, and a full description of which, illustrated 
with engravings, afterwards appeared in four volumes, in 

These two collections he purchased, and had them care- 
fully conveyed to St. Petersburgh, where they formed the 
nucleus of what afterwards became the Museum of Natural 
Histoiy of the Academy of Sciences, an institution found- 
ed ako by Peter, shortly before his death. A large 
building of stone, on the bank of the Neva, was assigned 
for the reception of these new acquisitions, where Peter 
was in the constant habit of visiting and contemplating 
them. In that building, he gave the first audience to an 
Ambassador from the Court of Vienna. '^ Let him come 
hither/' observed the Monarch to his Chancellor, who was 
asking whether the Summer Palace would not be a more 
jqipropiiate place for receiving that minister : , ^' let him 
come hither ; it must be a matter of indifference to him 
in M^iicfa place I first see him. It is to me, and not to one 
of my hoases, that he is sent : whatever he has to comma- 


nicate, he may impart to me whereyer I am.^ And the 
audience actually took place in the Cafainet of Natural 

The collections themselves were no less objects of admi- 
ration to Peter'^s officers and counsellors. He was one day, 
(whilst engaged in examining those collections) expatiating 
to his Attorney-gmeral, Paul Ivanovitch Jagoiichinsky* and 
other senators and great lords of his court, on the plea* 
sure as well as the utility of science, when turning to the 
librarian Schoumacher, he bade him, from that time forward, 
freely admit all classes of persons to the Museum, taking 
care to have proper assistants to show and explain to the 
viators every object they wished to examine. The man of 
law having an eye to the expense which the state would 
incur by an establishment of this nature, su^^sted that 
the visitor ought to pay one or two roubles for his admia* 
sion. ^^ Paul Ivanovitch,^ was the answer of the Sovereign, 
'' who would take the trouble to come and admire my exo« 
tics» if I exhibited them for money ? No, no ; my intention 
is^ that they should not only be shown gratuitously to all, 
but also that whenever a party of people come on purpose 
to visit these cabinets, a cup of oofiee, or a glass of wine, or 
some other refreshment shall be offered to them at my ex- 
pense.*' The latter practice was continued until the death 
of the Empress Anne. 

Peter had a firm conviction that the mere contemplation 
of the various objects of science, and still more so the 
study of them, would tend to advance his great work of 
reform and amelioration among his subjects more than any 
other means he could devise ; he therefore never lost sight 
of his favourite object ; and when he fell ill of the com- 
plaint which ultimately put an end to his existence, among 
other charges, and with his dying breathy he recommended 
to the Empress Catherine Akxievna, who was to succeed 


bim, the completion of the work he had so happily 

Peter was right ; and the future Sovereigns of Russia 
will only consult their own, and their people's best interest, 
in dieiiahing the great lore for science which animated 
their illustrious ancestor. With nearly the same zeal 
did Peter endeavour to promote literature, and the trans- 
latioD of foreign works, on all subjects of importance, into 
the Buasian language. With the exception of a few 
ascetic publications, and books of devotion, there was 
scarcely a printed Russian book in existence, when Peter 
ascended the throne ; certainly none whatever on subjects 
of sciences and the arts. Peter felt all the inconvenience 
and prejudicial effects of this deficiency, and the obstacle 
it fnresented to the execution oi his gigantic projects, and 
forthwith ordered several important elementary and other 
foieign worksi, to be translated into the language of the 
country. Among other publications which he was desirous 
<^ seeing in a Russian dress, Puffendorff^s Introduction 
to his History of the European States was one ; and 
the translation of it the Monarch confided to a learned 
mook. The expression of remarkable sentiments, to which 
that translation gave rise on the part of Peter, is almost 
too well known to be received with indulgence if repeated 
here ; nevertheless it places that Sovereign's mind in so 
stiiking a light with regard to his notions of the Russian 
peofde, and his great desire to do them service, that it 
cannot be too often quoted. The monk having completed 
his task, presented the MS. to the Tzar, who, in his pre^ 
seBce, began to turn over the leaves, reading a few pas- 
sages to himself. Having stopped at a chapter towards the 
end of the book, the attending cheers observed that his 
£iee changed colour, and exhibited strong marks of dis- 
pleasure. ** Fool I" said the Tzar, turning to the monk. 



what did I bid you do with the book ?^ '^ To translate 
ity Sire !" ** Is this then a translation ?^ replied the Sove- 
reifpi, pointing at the same time to a paragraph in the ori- 
ginaly where the author had spoken harshly of Rusaiay 
and of the character of its inhabitants, but which the good- 
natured monk had in part omitted, and in part softened 
down in the most flattering manner to the nation. ** Hence V* 
added the incensed monarch, ^^ and be careful how thou 
translatest the work faithfully. It is not to flatter my sub- 
jects that I bade thee put the book into Russian and print 
it ; but rather to correct them, by placing under th^ eye 
the opinion which foreigners entertain of them, in order 
that they may at length know what they once were, and 
what they now are through my exertions." 

Nor was the love of Peter for the fine arts less con- 
spicuous. During his second voyage to Amsterdam he 
visited all the celebrated artists of that city, frequently 
stopping whole hours to see them paint. Out of his 
favourite school, the ** Flemish,^' he made a considerable 
collection of paintings on that occasion, which served to 
form the picture-gallery at the Imperial country residence 
of Peterhof, where, as well as in the wooden Summer 
Palace described in the preceding chapter, he also depo- 
sited several sea pieces by Silo, who was then celebrated as 
a marine painter, particularly in representing naval engage- 
ments, having himself been a naval Captain. While in 
Paris, also, Peter frequented the ateliers of the most 
distinguished artists, and had several portraits of himself 
taken in order to possess some specimens of their art. 
Nigaud and Natoire are the two who succeeded best. The 
latter painted the Monarch clad in armour, and a portrait 
also of the Empress Catherine ; both works of great 
merit, which afterwards became the property of the 
Great Chancellor Woronzow, the grandfather of the 
General at whdse bouse I was stajring in St Petersburgh. 


But his partiality for the best artists of foreign nations 
served oolj to increase his desire of seeing the art of paint- 
ing cultivated in Russia. Having discovered some talent 
in the young son of his Secretary Natikine« he sent him to 
Amsterdam, whence he returned a good historical painter : 
some of his works are justly esteemed, and are to be seen 
at St. Petersburgh, as well as in different churches in Rus- 
sia. Matweef, Sacharof, Merkurief and Vodili Vasilewsky, 
were by Peter sent to Rome to learn the art of painting, 
while Seruzoff and Geropkin studied architecture there. 
All of them on their return assisted in decorating or building 
several churches and other edifices in various parts of Russia. 

With such precedents and such foundations it was to 
be expected that science, literature and the arts would be 
patrcmized by Peter^s successors, and that what that great 
man had b^un, succeeding Sovereigns would complete ; 
nay, that, in order to promote them, specific establishments 
and institutions would be erected, properly endowed, and, 
if necessary, multiplied. 

Such has in fact been the case, and it must be admitted 
that the Russians, as well as those foreign residents who 
have in a manner become Russians, possess scientific in- 
stitutions and men capable of instructing them in almost 
every branch of modem science, equal to those of any 
other country. In reference to mathematics and astronomy, 
for example, the services rendered to science by many of 
the former and one of the present professors of Russian Uni- 
versities have been acknowledged in every part of civilized 
Europe. Some of the professional persons, whom I have 
known, seemed well versed in the collateral branches of 
sdenoe connected with medicine ; and even among people 
of rank and independent fortune, I found a few who had 
cultivated science for its own sake and the enjoyments it 
procures. Speaking in a general way, however, I think 
that I shall not be far wrong, if I state that the present 


condition of scientific knowledge in St. Petertburgh, is not 
on a level with that of other enlightened countries. In- 
deed, in the first number of a journal entitled *^ Oukaza. 
tel,'' published in that capital two or three years ago, by 
Professor Stch^lo£P, of the University of St. Petersburgfa, 
I find it asserted, ^^ that in spite of the means which the 
Government employs to encourage scientific acquirements, 
and to make them part of the education of every establish- 
ment of public instruction ; and notwithstanding the gene- 
ral feeling which begins to prevail among the better classes 
<tf society on the importance of science, its propagation 
among the Russians is still slow and unsatisfactory.*^ A 
recent English writer on Russian literature, seems to en- 
tertain a similar opinion on this subject. He admits that 
science has of late advanced more than usual in Russia ; 
but he adds, ** It cannot be denied that Russian men of 
science have been satisfied with watching its progress in 
other countries, with publishing translations of foreign ele- 
mentary works, and that none of their names are attached 
to any discoveries." At the same time, it is but justice to 
add, that in geography and hydraulics this sweeping aa« 
sertion does not with propriety apply ; inasmuch as Russian 
discoveries, by sea and land, and their great proficiency in 
surveying and map-making, and, above all, their system of 
internal navigation, place their name, in those respects, 
on a par with the scientific men of every other civilized 

Of the institutions connected with science to be fouild 
in St. Petersburgh, the Imperial Academy of Sciences 
undoubtedly claims a precedence in our brief notice of 
them. The buildings belonging to that institution are si« 
tuated on the right bank of the Neva, not many yards from, 
and on the right of, the Isaac bridge, and exactly opposite to 
the Admiralty. The first building contains la Salle de 


Conference, and other spacdous apartments. The vestibule 
aod the great staircase have considerable merit. Of the ex. 
terior, the reader will form a tolerable idea from the en- 
graving here introduced. The octostyle portico in front 
of it, forms a very striking object on the bank of the river. 
A little way beyond it, another large structure, of much 
less architectural pretensions, presents itself, and contains 
the different cabinets and collections, as well as the library 
and the printing-offices of the Academy. From the centre 
of the latter building rises the hexagonal tower of the 
Obeervatory. The pillar on the right is one of the rostnd 
columns erected in front of the exchange. 

What Peter could not accomplish, Catherine the First 
afterwards completed. The Emperor founded the Aca- 
demy in 17£4, and the illustrious widow inaugurated it in 
December of the year following. The celebrated Euler, 
the two Bemouilli, Delille et Boyer, were called to take 
an active part in it ; but not till the new plan of ope- 
rations drawn up in 1747 had been made public, did the 
Imperial Academy extend its researches to the diffei«nt 
departments of natural history. In the reign of Elizabeth, 
the Academy boasted of one of those extraordinary minds 
which are not unfrequently seen to rise from obscurity and 
the humblest stations. This was LfOm<niossoff, who after- 
wards became equally celebrated as a poet, and as a man of 
sdeooe. The Hussians are naturally very proud of his 
name, and the Academy erected a monument to his me- 
mory. Catherine the Second, more than any of her pre- 
decessors, encouraged science, and fostered the interest of 
the Academy. There was in her time a college, or high 
school attached to the institution, and many of the pupils 
were sent to different parts of Europe, by order ^ the 
Empress, to make themselves masters of various branches 
ci sdenoe. Euler, who had retired to Berh'n, was recalled 


to St. Petersburgh by that Sovereign, who held him m 
great esteem ever after. Pallas also, and several of his 
contemporaries were admitted as active members, and be- 
came deservedly great favourites with the Empress. The 
building containing the Salle des Conferences^ was erected 
in her reign ; and the MSS. of Kepler, which had been 
purchased at Trankfort, together with HerschePs tele- 
scope, bought in London, were presented by Catherine to 
the Academy. Among the many benefactions received 
from that Sovereign, this Institution attaches the highest 
value to her autograph instructions given to the committee 
whom die had appointed to frame a code of laws for the 
empire, and . which are now in the library of the Acade- 
my. The Emperor Paul and his Empress also bestowed 
their favour to the Academy in an especial manner ; and 
much of the increasing character and popularity of that 
institution is due to the protection of Alexander, who, in 
l80S, granted to it a new code of regulations, by which its 
revenue was doubled, its privileges increased, and the 
sphere of its operations extended. 

By that code of regulations, very recently modified by 
the Emperor Nicholas, who has extended its means and 
increased its power, the Academy is now governed. It 
fixes the classes, as well as the number of members, and 
provides for the security and improvement of the collec- 
tions. The members are divided into honorary and c(v- 
responding members, to which is added a class of ^^ acade- 
micians" and their ^^ adjoints,^ who are in fact the curators 
of the different collections. These, including the profes- 
sor of astronomy, have a salary, and are provided with a 
house or apartments not far from the Academy. The 
honorary and corresponding members are subdivided into 

dipldma to all members is granted in the name of the 


Emperor, and is signed by the President and the perpe- 
tual secretary. The academicians wear a species of uni* 
form, which consists of a plain blue coat, with a red 
collar and a particular button. There are, as in all other 
societies, general and ordinary meetings, at all of which the 
" academicians^ and their " adjaints" are expected to be 
present. The two latter designations of members are usu-* 
ally styled professors, who being versed in some particular 
branch of science, have the duty assigned them of taking 
care of the different objects connected with it which the 
Academy possesses, and of presenting from time to time 
observations and memoirs upon them. The President of 
the Academy at present is Monsieur Ouvaroff, an ac- 
complished scholar, well versed in several branches of 
knowledge, an excellent linguist, and with the reputation 
at having devoted more time and attention to the study 
of the ancient Greek authors than is in general the case 
in Russia. The last volume of the Memoirs of the Aca- 
demy bears evidence of this fact. In a paper on the 
ancient Greek tragedians, written in the French language. 
Monsieur Ouvaroff has presented his readers with a short 
but welLdigested view of the relative merits of the three 
celebrated contemporaries, Eschylus, Sophocles, and Euri- 
pides, and of the character and progress of tragic compo- 
sition among the Greeks. He cultivates with great zeal 
and assiduity the language of his country, for the improve- 
ment of which his efforts have been strenuous and unre- 
mitting. His fortune is said to be very considerable; 
a circumstance by no means of little importance in quali- 
fying a person to fill that office; for there can be no 
doubt that the head of the general assembly of scientific 
men in a large capital, better represents the dignity and 
the interests of science, when he unites wealth and elevated 
rank to the many other qualifications which President 


Ouvarc^ is known to possess. The perpetual Secretary 
to the Academy is Mr. P. H. Fuss, a distinguished ma- 
thematiciany who succeeded his father in that office and 
inherited his reputation. 

The Academy is divided into four sections ; the first 
embraces the mathematical^ the second the physical, the 
third the political sciences, and the fourth is especially des- 
tined to the advancement of history and philology. 

The services rendered to science by the Imperial Aca- 
demy of St. Petersburgh are too well known to call for 
any particular enumeration of them. What mathemati- 
cian is ignorant of the prodigious and valuable labours of 
Euler, who on his death-bed declared that he left a legacy 
to the Academy of a number of mathematical papers suffi- 
cient to supply every succeeding volume of the Transac- 
tions, with two or three memoirs from his pen, for the 
succeeding half century P And bow strictly has his word 
been kept ! Upwards of thirty years have elapsed since 
the death of that distinguished individual, and the latest 
volume of the Memoirs of the Academy, like all its 
predecessors, contains not fewer than three papers by 
him on transcendental mathematics. The latter science 
indeed seems to have been cultivated with the greatest 
ardour and success, to judge by the publications that have 
issued from the press of the Academy during the last 
forty years of its existence. The names of Nicolas and 
Daniel Bernouilli, Hermann, Goldbach, Krafit senior, had 
set a mo9t encouraging example to the academicians who 
followed at a later period, such as Euler himself, Nicolas 
Fuss, Boumofsky, GouriefF, Viscovatoff, and Collins. It 
is from the works of two of these eminent persons, Daniel 
Bernouilli and Leonard Euler, that hydrodynamics ac- 
quired a becoming rank among the mathematical sciences, 
and assumed a new and more important aspect. Bv«n 


the celebrated Laplace acknowledged that astronomy had 
derived great and lasting benefit from the labours of the 
St Petersburgh academicians, and in particular from 
Schabert^s Theoretical Treatise on that science. But it 
is almost unjust to the rest of the members belodging 
to the Academy to attempt to single out a few, where 
all have exerted themselves to raise the character of science, 
and with it that of the society to which they belonged. 
Upwards of 1900 memoirs, or papers of more or less im* 
portance, written by them and inserted in the seventy-two 
volumes of Transactions of the Academy, testify their seal 
and industry, and show that no subject connected with 
mathematical science can be named that has not been 
illustrated by them. 

Geography, as I brfcnre observed, and several branches 
of natural fdiUosophy, are also greatly indebted to the 
exertions of the members of this Academy. Several 
of the academicians undertook long and perilous voy- 
ages and travels, in order to extend the former of those 
sciences, to acquire more accurate notions of the situation 
of places, and to correct the many errors which had gradu- 
ally cxept into a science that requires so much precision. 
Of the twelve astronomers who were sent to observe 
the transit of Venus in different parts of the globe, se- 
veral were members of the Academy ; and, like another 
academician, Inokhodsoff, who subsequently visited Siberia 
to determine the geographical positions of several cities, 
had been engaged for their respective tasks, at the expense 
of the Academy ; but that which more, perhaps, than any 
other enterprise of the kind in Russia, has served to ad- 
vance ge ogr a phy, and brought the art of constructing maps 
to its present degree of perfection, is the astronomical 
voyage of Wishniewsky, also undertaken at the expense of 
the Imperial Academy, which lasted eight years, and fur- 


nisbed us with precise knowledge of not fewer than three 
hundred geographical positions, the calculations of which 
were deposited at the Imperial office of military topography. 

The first observations on the congelation of mercury are 
due to Braun, another academician. This curious phe- 
nomenon can only be seen by scientific men, placed in 
such favourable latitudes for that purpose, as Siberia. 
It was so observed in January last at Perm, where the 
winter is said to have been extremely severe this year ; 
for, from the 2d of December, 1826, to the 30th of Ja- 
nuary, 1827, the Reaumur thermometer constantly ranged 
between twenty and thirty degrees below zero. In the 
night of the 17th of January the mercury froze; the 
spirit thermometer marked from thirty-five to forty degrees 
of cold ; and the experiment of freezing mercury was per- 
formed by several persons, on a scale sufficiently large to 
reduce it into thin sheets by hammering. Such an oppor- 
tunity of performing so interesting an experiment had not 
occurred in that country since the winter of 1811. An 
account of the present experiments was received at the 
Imperial Academy, and found its way into the public jour- 
nals. One of Braun'^s colleagues, Richmann^ fell a victim 
to the first experiments ever made on the electricity of 
thunder-clouds, by means of kites ; and the discoveries in 
magnetism and electridty, as well as the invention of a 
microscopical telescope by iEpinus, have justly placed the 
latter academician among the most celebrated natural 

These are a few of the services rendered to physical 
science by the St. Petersburgh academicians. With respect 
to chemistry, it would be almost an act of supererogation 
in a country so eminently versed in chemical literature as 
England, were I to enter into the many interesting details 
which the consideration of the labours of those acade- 
micians abundantly supply. They have not, it is true. 


distinguished themselves by any of those very brilliant dis- 
coveries which mark the chemical eras of England, France, 
Italy, and Germany ; neither have they published any 
very important elementary treatise on that science ; but in 
several of its departments, they have exhibited much saga* 
dty, as well as practical knowledge of its useful applica- 
tions. Lowitz, who ascertained the antiseptic powers of 
charcoal ; and KirchhoiF, by whom a process was invented 
for converting potato flour into sugar, are names perfectly 
familiar to English chemists ; not to mention many others 
who have equally deserved the consideration of Continental 

In natural history, the St. Petersburgh academicians 
of former days, scarcely yield the palm to the scientific 
men of any other country. Who has not heard of Gmelin, 
Pallas, Lepekine, Falk, and Georgi, and the eminent ser- 
vices rendered by those naturalists to the various branches 
of zodogy, botany, and mineralogy ? The academical 
expeditions of those able men have made Russia and 
its numerous productions better known than deeds of 
arms could have done and have suggested improvements 
from which the Empire has not been long in deriving in- 
finite advantage. In human as well as comparative ana* 
tomy, the academicians Duvemois, Wild, WolfF, Zagorsky, 
and lately Pander — in botany, Boxbaum, the author of 
the CenturuBf Gmelin, who wrote the Flora of Siberia, 
Giildenstadt, to whose exertions we are indebted for the 
Caucasian Flora, with Rudolph, Smelovsky, and Triuius — 
in mineralogy, Laxmann, Ferber, F. B. Hermann, and 
Severguine, have, by their writings, more than sufficiently 
made good the claim of the academicians of St. Peters- 
burgh to an honourable rank among those who have, 
within the last fifty years, rendered themselves conspicuous 
m the cultivation of natural science. 



Nor were the labours which gained them such well- 
merited reputation, unattended by many perils; on the odd- 
trary, several of the most zealous and industrious among 
them have either forfeited their lives or their liberties, or 
otherwise encountered appalling dangers in pursuit of their 
favourite objects. Thus Lowitz the father was destroyed 
by the Cossacks of Pougatcheff ; Gmelin, junior, died in 
captivity ; and Giildenst'adt, already a prisoner of the same 
chieftain, Ousmey Khan of the Lesghiens, owed his liberty 
to a Russian corps sent to deliver him by General Med^n. 
Tchernoi also died a captive of the Kirhuisians, and his 
watch-maker, Arnold, ransomed himself after several years 
imprisonment. Nor were of Falk and Redofsky more for- 
tunate: these two academicians died from extenuation 
after the fatigues of long and disastrous journeys. 

But the Academy of St. Petersburgh is justly proud <^ 
another branch of scientific investigation, to the advance- 
ment of which it has been mainly instrumental, namely, 
that connected with navigation. I allude to the great voy* 
ages of discovery and instruction, which have been under- 
taken from time to time at its suggestion, and always with 
its concurrence; in almost every succeeding reign since the 
glorious days of Peter. The results have been made known 
to the scientific world, and have almost become a part of 
the common property of Europe. They form one of the 
most brilliant records of the scientific history of Russia, -Che 
inhabitants of which will not fail to read with interest the 
general collection of the several voyages alluded to, latdy 
preparing for publication in the Russian language^'at the 
suggestion of Monsieur OuvarofiT, President of tlie Academy. 
The more recent of those voyages by Oseretskophy, Zouieff, 
Redofsky, Adams the discoverer of the mammoth, and the 
researches of the two naturalists who accompanied Admiral 
Krusenstem, Tilesius and Langsdorff, have secured to the 


Russians the character of able, persevering, and successful 
navigators. The first voyage round the world performed 
by the Russians did not take place until 1803, under the 
reign of Alexander. 

Nor have the efforts of the Academicians been less 
praiseworthy in regard to their own National History and 
Philology, Numismatics and Russian antiquities, Political 
Economy and Statistics. The distinguished names of 
Kohler, Grafe, Frabn, Miiller, and Fischer, bear suffi- 
cient testimony of the extent and merit of the different 
memoirs on those interesting subjects, inserted in the vo- 
lumes of the Academy, or printed separately. With re* 
gaid to the two last-mentioned departments of Moral 
Sciences, they are as yet too much in their infancy in all 
parts of civilized Europe, and still more so in Russia, (where 
they have only been cultivated within the last twenty years, 
and that even in an imperfect manner), to. have given rise 
to any production or result of great importance ; neverthe- 
lesBy there have been, and still are among the members of 
the Academy, those who have cultivated either the one or the 
other with assiduity, and have laid the foundation, both by 
their example and personal exertions, for more ample and 
important researches. Storch, known for several works of 
merit, is the academician who most enjoys the reputation of 
an able writer on Political Economy. His last production 
on that subject has been well received in Germany, England, 
France, and the Netherlands ; and as far as a science with- 
out a basis can admit of demonstration, that work seems to 
hlsve been considered as having approached very nearly to 
that desirable consummation. Another of the living Aca- 
demicians, Hermann, claims the merit of having established 
a new theory of statistics consistent with the actual state of 
PoKtical Sciences and founded on a large number of facts 
suffidently established. 

1 2 


In the last two volumes of the Memoirs or Transactions 
of the Imperial Academy, being the 9th and 10th of a 
new series, both those writers have inserted some papers 
of great interest, each on his respective and favourite 
branch of knowledge. Storch, indeed, has in his Memoirs 
entered into the discussion of some of the most intricate 
questions of political economy, such as, 1. In what manner 
nations become rich by employing their superfluous reve- 
nue. 2, What descriptions of private incomes serve to form 
the national revenue. 

The Observatory of the Academy has, notwithstanding 
the many inconveniences of its situation, produced a num- 
ber of observations and results generally esteemed ; and, 
from the character of the astronomers who have from time 
to time been attached to it, these records are considered of 
much value. The most remarkable event, however, in the 
history of this branch of the Institution, was the opportu- 
nity afforded to the astronomers of the Academy of obs^rv- 
ing the transit of Venus over the solar disc, when not fewer 
than twelve of them were dispatched to difi^erent parts of 
the globe to watch that celestial phenomenon^ a repetition 
of which will only occur again in 1874. It was on that 
memorable occasion that astronomers were able to deter- 
mine with more precision than they had hitherto done, the 
distance of the earth from the sun, together with several 
other important calculations connected with our planetary 
system. A faithful record of meteorological phenome- 
na 16 kept at the Observatory, and in the lost volume of 
the Memoirs, two reports of this nature will be found, 
by Monsieur Petrofi^, giving an account of the meteorolo- 
gical state of the atmosphere in the years 1819 and SO, of 
which I have availed myself in another place. There is 
nothing very remarkable in the Observatory, beyond what 


is to be met with in every other establishment of the same 
class. All the most modem and improved instruments are 
to be seen in it, many of which are of English construc- 
tion ; and there is a small library of astronomical books 
belonging to it. This building of stone, which had origi- 
nally formed part of the Palace of the Tzarina Prascovie Fe- 
odorovna, suffered considerably from a fire which happened 
in 1747, but was some time afterwards restored to its 
present state. Before quitting the subject of astronomy, I 
must b^ permission to say a word or two on the subject 
of the Gottorp Globe, of which so much has been said by 
other travellers. I proceeded to view this much-talked-of 
gigantic instrument, in which I succeeded, but not without 
experiencing some difficulties, owing to the extensive commer- 
cial buildings that are in progress in its vicinity, and also in 
consequence of our guide not knowing precisely the right 
entrance into the establishment in which the globe is kept. 
I had to wade through a couple of feet of undisturbed snow, 
by which the solitary building was surrounded, and having 
miSunted several steps, found a crazy glass-door shut, which 
gave way to the slightest effort. Within this wooden 
diamber is the globe, displaced from its right position on 
the stand, much neglected, and in several parts damaged : 
the endless screw beneath the table, by which the globe 
could formerly be turned, so as to represent the movements 
of the celestial bodies, was no longer in a state to perform 
its function. The surface of this hollow globe, the di- 
ameter of which is fourteen feet, represents the earth, with 
a square opening sufficiently large to allow of one person 
at a time to enter it. The inner surface delineates the 
planets and constellations, and there is a table fixed in the 
centre, with circular seats, in order that the spectators may 
oGDtemplate, by the movement of the circumference around 


them, the mutations of the heavenly bodies. The material of 
which the globe is made is wood, and the manner in which 
the terrestrial as well as the celestial objects are represented 
on its exterior and interior surfaces, is not creditable to 
the artist. On the whole, the affair may be considered as a 
mere concetto^ or bizzaria : nor do I wonder at the state of 
neglect into which it has fallen. The sooner it is removed 
altogether, the better : it can never be looked upon either 
as an object of curiosity, or one of instruction. In point of 
execution and utility, the two globes, celestial and terres- 
trial, belonging to the Royal Library at Paris, constructed 
by Coronelli, are infinitely superior. They are, indeed, 
smaller in diameter by two feet ; but the representatibn 
of the different objects on them is much more accurate, and 
more ably finished. The original Gottorp globe was made 
of copper, and was kept in the tower of the Observatory, but 
having been nearly consumed during the great fire of 1747, 
the present one was substituted, and removed to its present 

I devoted an entire morning, and part of two others, to 
visit and examine the various collections belonging to the 
Academy. It had been agreed that I should have the honour 
to accompany the President for that purpose, hut his state 
of health not permitting him to encounter the severity of 
the weather, I resolved to go alone. On one occasion, how- 
ever, I had the good fortune to be escorted by Professor 
Grafe, whose name I have already introduced to the notice 
of my readers, as Curator of the Numismatic Collection, to 
which I may now add, and of the Egyptian Museum. 

The number of rooms through which I had to pass, the 
greatest part of which were not heated, made it a task of 
some hazard to pace them with due deliberation, for the 
purpose of examining with proper attention the many ob- 
jects which presented themselves to my notice* The apart- 


nieDts are principally on the ground and first stories^ and 
under one roof are found the following collections : — 

A. The Zoological Museum^ under the care of Messrs. 

Ozeretskofsky (since dead), Sevastianoff, and 

B. The Cabinet of Mineralogy. 

C. The Collection of dried Plants. 

D. The Asiatic Museum. 

C The Collection of Ancient Medals and Coins. 

F. The three Cabinets of Asiatic, Russian, and Mo- 
dem Medals. 

6. The Cabinet of Curiosities, together- with a co- 
pious and well-appointed Library. 

It is much to be regretted, that with such inexhaustible 
mines of riches, in every department of scientific knowledge, 
many of which are perfectly unique, and only to be found 
in this place, means are not adopted, congenial with the 
original intentions of the Great Founder of Science in St. 
Petersburgh, for keeping, during the winter season, the 
whole range of apartments in such a state of ventilation 
and degree of warmth, that they may be thrown open gene- 
rally to the public twice a-week, for several hours, and on 
all other days, Sunday excepted, to the students, or to those 
who have any particular object of research to pursue in them. 
Catalogues also made, first, according to the locality which 
the objects occupy in the Museums, and in reference to par- 
ticular numbers; secondly, with the objects arranged alpha- 
betically ; and thirdly, with the objects classed according 
to the department of science to which they belong, should 
be published for the use of the visitors, without which, the 
coUections are pretty nearly useless, or become a mere empty 
show. I am not aware that since the publication of the 


Museum Pelropolitanumy the second part of which ap- 
peared in 1745^ but the whole of which is nearly useless 
nowy any fi'esh catalogue has been made. If such an 
one exists, none was offered to me, nor did I find any 
trace of it. At present, I understand that there are no days 
in the week fixed for the admission of the public; but every 
facility is afforded to those who choose to visit the Mu- 
seums privately. In the summer, to promenade through 
so many handsome, well-built, and substantial rooms, dis- 
playing on all sides, arranged in very excellent order, the 
thousands of objects which nature and the industry of 
man have produced, must be a delightful recreation. But 
winter is the season for study ; and provisions for enabling 
a person to bear its severity in those apartments should 
be made, as an encouragement to those who must other- 
wise debar themselves for several months in the year 
from contemplating collections inferior in nothing, which 
they have in common, to those of the Jardin des Plantes 
at Paris ; though not equal to them in general, and even 
deficient in some parts, when two or three of the principal 
departments of science in these collections are compared to 
those of that celebrated Museum. 

Be that as it may, protected by a stout English cloak, 
and with the permission of wearing goloshes to my feet, 
as I had to stand for hours on the cold stone-pavement of 
the rooms, I proceeded to examine first the Museum of 
Natural History. My readers need not be alarmed at this 
formal announcement, lest it should imply a disposition 
on my part to enter into a regular and minute enumenu 
tion of the stuffed quadrupeds and birds ; dried fishes, 
and still drier specimens of mineralogy ; of the anatomi- 
cal preparations, and brilliant collections of insects and 
mollusca: for that indeed would be supplying the defi- 
ciency of catalogues of which I have complained. It will 


be quite sufficient to the object of the present work to 
state, in a general manner, the impression I received on 
▼iewing this establishment. 

The Zoological and Mineralogical Museums seem to be 
in a flourishing state ; but yet they are not on that grand 
scale which ought to characterize a great national depository. 
Several changes have taken place in them, owing to con* 
siderable augmentations, made since the latest published 
accounts of foreign travellers. Several apartments which 
formed part of the library having been appropriated to 
that purpose, the specimens have been arranged in a more 
favourable manner, consistent with the actual state of 
knowledge in Natural History. Several departments of 
these Museums have been enriched by the collections for- 
warded from South America by the Academician Langs- 
dorff, or presented by M. Pander, one of the curators. They 
consist, first, in a collection of fishes, amphibious animals 
and moUusca, brought to Russia by Doctor Siewald from his 
voyage round the world ; secondly, in a collection of insects, 
and petrifactions, together with a complete geognostical col- 
lection from the Crimea and the environs of Odessa, obtained 
in the course of that gentleman^s travels undertaken at his 
own expense ; and, thirdly, in a second collection of petri- 
factions, formed by the same Naturalist in the neighbour- 
hood of St. Pefersburgh, and particularly at Pawlosky and 
T8ar8ko^-9e]o. The last affords a complete view of the geo- 
logy of those districts, forming an appropriate continuation 
of the collections already in the possession of the Academy, 
iUustrative of the geological formation of the Governments 
of Estonia, Finland, Novgorod, Olonetz and Perm, two 
highly interesting districts of Siberia, Ecatherineburg 
Tomsk, Irkoutsk and Kamtchatka. That part of the Mu- 
seum of Natural History which is, properly speaking, mi- 
neralogical as well as geological, is arranged according to the 


new systems of Haiiy and Werner, and is highly creditable 
to Monsieur Severguine, whose reoMit loss the Academy has 
had occasion to deplore. Besides a respectable assemblage of 
exotic minerals, this Museum contains some rich geognosdc 
collections from Sweden and Hungary, together with some 
rare specimens from North America, the Island of Ferro, 
Greenland, Norway, and the Hartz. Towering above every 
surrounding object in interest as well as magnitude, each of 
these two great branches of the Museum of Natural History 
includes a truly unique specimen, the reputation of which 
is as familiar to every civilized country in Europe, as it 
is justly the boast of Russian science. I allude on tlie 
one hand to the celebrated skeleton of that stupendous in- 
habitant of a former world which has been denominated 
the mammoth ; and on the other to the .gigantic mass 
known under the name of native iron of Pallas, a crystal- 
lized aerolithe weighing 1656 pounds. The contemplation 
of both these objects, is, to the Naturalist, a sufficient in- 
ducement to undertake a journey to the Russian capital. 

The history of their discovery is too well known to 
need repetition in this place. I stood. before the gigantic 
animal, by the side of which even the skeletons of an 
African and Asiatic elephant looked insignificant, amazed 
and perfectly awed at its stupendous structure; I had 
never experienced similar feelings since the time when 
I had an opportunity of contemplating the perfect re- 
mains of the great Megatherium, which occupy the 
centre of a large room in the Royal Museum of Ma- 
drid. But in the present case the condition of the huge 
beast, and the recollection of the manner and locality in 
which it was discovered, were additional causes for sur* 
prise ; for instead of being fossilized, it has retuned the 
skin, the very flesh and the powerful tendons of the legs, 
in a recent state, as if its own gigantic elements, aided by 


the preserviDg influence of perpetual snows, had been suffi* 
cient to resist those eiCtraordinary changes which geolo- 
gical commotions seem to have efiected in other organized 
beings of an antediluvian world. Or is this, after all, one 
of a very limited race of animals not yet extinct, and per- 
haps wandering, even now, within a short distance of the 
intro-polar sea ? 

It is around this large room that a very respectable, 
though not extensive collection of birds, in handsome glass 
cases, is arranged under a gallery, in which are disposed 
the books of the Academy, on a large scale, forming a 
very valuable and comprehensive library. • 

I could not but look with respect on the collection of 
anatomical specimens, from the hand of the celebrated 
Ruysch, purchased by Peter for 30,000 florins, which 
occupies several glazed presses, and arranged by that 
great naturalist himself: and I felt great interest in ex- 
amining the series of human ova, from the earliest period 
at which their rudiments were supposed by Ruysch to be 
discernible; although it has since been ascertained that 
such rudiments are -to be observed at a much earlier pe- 
riod, by the help of powerful lenses : the series of embryos 
amount to one hundred and ten. There is also in this 
part of the museum a very extensive collection of human 
monsters, which was considerably augmented in virtue of 
an order issued by Peter the Great, that all such examples 
of deviations from the ordinary course of nature in the 
procreation of man, occurring at any time throughout the 
Empire, should be forwarded to the Imperial Academy. 
Wolff undertook to give the public a description of this 
highly curious part of the Anatomical Museum. The 
whole is kept in excellent order, and evinces much skill as 
well as taste in the curator, through whose exertions the 
collections have been recently placed in a condition that 


leaves but little room for improvement. I confess that I 
consider the anatomical preparations as being misplaced in 
the museum of the Academy of Sciences. When they were 
purchased by Peter, there existed no university, much less 
a public school of medicine, as at present in St. Peters- 
burgh : they could not, therefore, be disposed more advan- 
tageously than under the care of the members of the Aca- 
demy of Sciences ; but now that such a school exists^ and 
that a museum worthy of its reputation in Russia ought to 
be connected with it^ the preparations of Ruysch, with all its 
subsequent additions, would not only be more appropriately 
placed in such a museum, but be productive of more good, 
by the information they could not fail to afford to the nume- 
rous students who would have daily access to them. The 
frequent contemplation of such specimens, I know from ex- 
perience, to be of the greatest assistance to medical students. 
The Cabinet of Peter the Great consists of a suite of 
apartments so called, in which a variety of objects are placed 
that had belonged to that sovereign. In one of these apart- 
ments are preserved several brass cylinders, turned and en- 
graved by the monarch himself; the lathe is also in existence, 
Imd appears to have been of the most complicated descrip- 
tion. The designs are curious. On the cylinders are bas- 
reliefs of battles, and on their coverings intaglios to repre- 
sent portraits and buildings. Several mathematical and 
geographical instruments are disposed all round the room ; 
in the centre of which hangs an ivory chandelier, of curious 
and highly wrought workmanship, also the production of 
Peter. In the inner room, a figure of the great founder of 
the Academy, in wax, dressed in the splendid costume 
which he wore, when, with his own hands, he placed the 
Imperial crown on the head of Catherine the First, and, 
seated in an arm-chair, attracts attention from its almost 
gigantic size. Around him are suspended the portraits of 


seTeral sovereigns, many of them from pencils of consider- 
able merit. The conqueror of Poltawa is placed not far 
from the Arabian horse which carried him through that 
bloody field, and the two favourite dogs which accom- 
panied him on all occasions* These are preserved, very 
cleverly stuffed, in an adjoining room; where also the 
eye of the visitor surveys with great rapidity the nume- 
rous collections of working tools of the Emperor, an iron 
bar forged with his own hands, and the bas-reliefs he exe- 
cuted in copper, representing the severe contests in Livo- 
nia ; in one of which, the monarch emphatically exclaimed 
to the besieged inhabitants of a town to which he was 
about to afford succour, ^^ N'ayez pas peur Riga.'^ To 
complete this interesting assemblage of objects connected 
with the glorious recollections of their founders, the mem- 
bers of the Academy have preserved the distended skin of 
bis valet, a Frenchman, not a Mameluke, as stated by a 
recent writer, whose gigantic height of seven feet contrasts 
angularly with that of a Polish dwariy whose dry and 
distended skin is placed by its side. 

The Cabinet of Curiosities forms part of a circular room, 
baving a handsome cupola in the centre, under which is 
placed a magnificent copper terrestrial globe, seven feet 
in diameter, constructed by the heirs of the celebrated geo- 
grapher Bleau, which had been presented by the States-Ge- 
neral to the Tzar Alexey Mikhailovitch. A portico ranges 
all round this part, and under it is displayed a very fine 
and complete collection of madreporites and shells, kept in 
glass cases. Above this portico is a gallery lighted by- 
numerous windows. A great number of well-modelled 
figures, are arranged in the various recesses between the 
pillars, dressed in the perfect eostumes of the Chinese, 
Persians, Aleutans, Carelians, and many of the Eastern, 
Pacific, and Northern Islanders, visited or discovered by 


Rusrian travellers and navigators, as well as of the difiFinrent 
nations inhabiting Siberia. The dress worn by the Pagan 
and prophetic priests, called Chamans, with the instru- 
ments of their system of deception, consisting of a cap, a 
horn of iron, a thong strung with rings, and a deep-toned 
drum, were pointed out to me among a great variety of 
national costumes. 

The collection of insects is one of great value ; and the 
same may be said of the dried plants, the collection of 
which is formed not only of the herbariums brought back 
from their travels by Gmelin, Falk, and Pallas; but of 
those of the indigenous plants of Grorenki, the rich collec- 
tion of the late eminent Professor Hoffmann at Moscow, 
and the collections formed by Sieber in Palestine, Egypt, 
New Holland, the Isle of France, and West Indies, pur« 
chased by the Academy at the suggestion of Trinius the 
curator. A valuable collection of American plants, a pre- 
sent from M. Ouvaroff, the president, and another of the 
plants which grow near Odessa, presented by Pander, have 
been added to the former. This part of the general 
museum had been suffered to fall into utter neglect, until 
the appointment of Trinius, through whose zeal it is 
now brought to a state that promises the best results to 

The Museum of Medals, including the ancient as well 
as the modem coins of different nations, had its beginning 
under Peter; but with the exception of the Russian 
medals in bronze, which were struck by order of the Em- 
press Catherine for the benefit of Russian history, from 
Rurich down to Catherine the Second, and were added 
to it, no steps were taken from 1782 to 18SS to increase 
its value, or add to the number of its coins. It boasted, 
indeed, of some ancient Roman medals of great merit ; 
and Imong those of modem times, several belonging to the 


Roman Empire, to France, England, Saxony, Italy, and 
Holland, were considered as rare and instructive ; but as 
a collection it was acknowledged to be very deficient. 
The president, fully sensible of the importance of numis- 
matic illustration to the reading and understanding of the 
history of different nations, obtained permission from the 
late Emperor to purchase the fine numismatic cabinet of 
Greek and Roman coins belonging to General Count Such- 
telen, for a sum of 50,000 roubles, which were taken out 
of the savings of the Academy. The number of medals 
contained in this collection amounts to 12,000, of which 
188 are of gold, and 3758 of silver. These, together with 
the medals previously existing, occupy two very handsome 
rooms on the principal story of the second building of the 
Academy, and are under the care of Professor Grafe, who 
is engaged in compiling a general catalogue of them, and 
who was kind enough to point out to me the several objects 
of value and interest most deserving of notice. The medals 
of the Russian Sovereigns by Gass are really very credi- 
table performances. In the same part of the building 
have been arranged the different objects in gold, found in 
the tumuli of Siberia ; and directions, I understand, have 
been given to the governors of that part of Russia to 
forward to the Academy idl similar monuments and re- 
mains that might hereafter be brought to light. These 
relics of a nation scarcely known, consist in diadems, 
military trophies, coats of mail, jewels, idols, and figures 
of various animals. The material of which they are 
made, and the beauty of their design and workmanship, 
bespeak great wealth, and an advancement in the polite 
and useful arts in the dominions of the race of Tschin- 
ghis-Elian, scarcely to be credited, were not these testi- 
monies indubitable. 

I have been informed by competent judges that the 


Asiatic Museum of the Academy is one of the richest of 
the kind in Europe, containing, among many other precious 
objects, a choice library of Chinese, Mandshoos, Japan- 
ese, Mongolese, and Tibetans, printed books, and manu- 
scripts. Among these are several treatises of great import- 
ance on almost all the branches of literature. In the same 
Museum are contained large collections of Mohammedan, 
Chinese, and Japanese coins, to which may be added an 
interesting and complete assemblage of Mongolese idols, cast 
in bronze gilt, forming a real school for the study of the reli- 
gion of Boudda. To the indefatigable exertions of Pro- 
fessor Frahn the Museum is indebted for several additions 
to its riches. He has arranged ijso the seven hundred 
Arabian, Persian, and Turkish manuscripts brought from 
Bagdad, and has completed a catalogue of the numismatic 
part of the collection. I was much struck with the splen- 
dour of the different costumes in private, as well as pub- 
lic life, of the different Oriental nations, particularly the 
Chinese and Japanese, displayed in these rooms; their 
instruments and utensils, articles of luxury, arms, produc- 
tions of art and manufactures, are better calculated than 
any description, to give a correct notion of the manners 
and customs of those nations. 

There is another, and the last collection in the same 
building, lately added to the rest, and placed under the espe- 
cial care of Grafe, which is illustrative of the religion and 
some of the customs of the ancient Egyptians. Although, 
after the collections at Berlin, Paris, and Turin, it is 
scarcely possible to expect any very extraordinary display 
of ancient Egyptian remains — yet the Egyptian Museum 
of St. Petersburgh is far from being despicable. It was 
originally formed by a Milanese traveller named Castigli- 
one, who had long resided at Alexandria and Cairo ; and 
was purchased from him by the Academy for the sum of 
40,000 roubles, taken out of the savings of the Academy. 


These repeated acquisitions of valuable, and, I should say, 
necessary collections by a scientific body, which does not 
allow itself to depend on the will of a minister of finance, 
or the uncertain vote of a legislative assembly for the 
requisite supply of money to complete the purchase, are as 
many testimonials of the excellent and economical manner 
in which the funds of the society are managed by its wor- 
thy president and council of administration. The Egyp- 
tian collection I had an opportunity of examining with 
great attention. It consists of about 1000 articles, among 
which are three statues, thirty bas-reliefs, (some of great 
merit,) four mummies, two of which are contained in thin 
cases, richly painted and varnished, and the two others are 
mummies of children, twelve large alabaster vases, and 
several hundred small idols, utensils, and ornaments in 
terra-cotta, and glazed hearths, inferior however to those 
in the Museum of Berlin. There are also a few papyri. 
The two rooms occupied by these different objects have 
been decorated and painted in such a manner as to repre- 
sent the interior of some of the Egyptian hypogsei. 

The Imperial Academy of Sciences held a general meet- 
ing on the 29th of December 1826, old style, in commemo- 
ration of the first secular anniversary of its foundation. 
On that occasion, the Emperor and the two Empresses, 
with the rest of the Imperial Family, attended at the 6a> 
licitation of Monsieur Ouvaroff and several of the members 
forming a deputation, and who were introduced for that 
purpose by the great Chamberlain, Count Litta, into the Im- 
perial presence. All the ministers, the diplomatic corps, the 
principal military and civil authorities, and a great number 
of persons of the first distinction attached to the Court, be- 
sides the several members of the dignified clergy were also 
present. The president, Ouvaroff, delivered an oration in 
the Russian language, in which he gave a rapid sketch of the 



foundation and progresB of the Academy, as well as of the 
fayours conferred on it by succeeding Sovereigns during the 
first hundred years of its existence. This speech was followed 
by the reading of a memoir in the French language, by the 
perpetual secretary, containing an account of the labours of 
the Academy, and of the numerous and important services 
which it had rendered to every branch of science in the 
course of the first century of its existence. A gold medal, 
struck purposely to commemorate the secular festival, was 
presented to their Majesties and the members of the Imperial 
fitmily ; and it was remarked that the Empress-mother, who 
is so keenly alive to whatever interests the intellectual wel« 
fare of her people, seemed strongly to feel the solemnity of 
the occasion, probably from the recollection that just fifty 
years before, she had assisted at an analc^us ceremony 
which had taken place to celebrate the semi-secular or 
fiftieth anniversary of the Academy. A few days after this 
general meeting, the Academy sent a deputation to that 
august Princess, bearing another golden medal, which was 
presented to her, and which, was intended to perpetuate in 
a more special manner, at one and the same time, the recol- 
lection of the centennium, and the beneficent disposition of 
the Empress-mother. This medal, which was executed by 
Count Theodore Tolstoy, a modeller and amateur medallist 
of great merit, represented on the one side her portrait, 
and on the obverse two crowns, one of roses, the other of 
oak leaves, with the years js in the centre of them. The 
Russian inscription on the medal signifies Pour le bonheur 
de torn. 

The secretary next read the programmes of the diSereut 
prizes proposed by the Academy for the ensuing year, in^ 
eluding two for historical subjects, founded by the Pre- 
sident, and an anonymous person ; and next the list of 
honorary and corresponding members reoentiy elected, at 


the head of the former of which was the name of Nicholas 
the First. 

After the meeting broke up, the Imperial guests, and 
the company in general, partook of the refreshments laid 
out with great taste and profusion in one of the saloons 
of the Academy, and in the evening the several buildings 
of that society were illuminated. This homage to science, 
more splendid than has ever been paid to it in any other 
country, among a people whose scientific knowledge dates 
only a hundred years back, is creditable to the Academy 
of St. Petersburgh, and highly honourable to the Sovereign 
of the country. 

The secular gold medal was also engraved by Count Theo- 
d<ire Tolstoy, after the design of Professor Kolher, a numis- 
matic writer of great celebrity, whom I have had occaaon to 
mention before. It does great credit to the arts of the coun- 
try, and may, without partiality, be said to be one of the finest 
medals of modem times. Since my return I had repeated 
opportunities of submitting one of them in bronze to two or 
Aree eminent artists in this country, who agreed with me 
io the above opinion. On one side it bears a very striking 
effigy d the Emperor, with the legend Nicolas I., Em- 
peror and Autocrate of all the Russias ; and on the ob- 
verse, the figure of Minerva, surrounded by her various 
attributes, is represented sitting, and with her right hand 
extended, holding a laurel crown over a double bust of the 
Emperors Peter and Alexander, with the legend : '^ To 
the Founder and Preservers,'* with an inscription of '^ Im- 
perial Academy of Sciences of St. Petersburgh, S9th De- 
cember, 18^." Both legends, as well as the inscription, 
are in the Rusnan language. On this same occasion, the 
Academy received from Prince Sergius Soltikofl^, a docu* 
mentof conriderable importance in reference to the modem 
History of Russia, being the instructions drawn up at the 

K 9, 

132 THE author's public lbgturb 

desire of the Empress Catherine for the education of the 
late Emperor Alexander and the Grand Duke Constantine. 
The document is signed by that Princess, and is now 
preserved in the Archives of the Academy. 

From the press of this Institution, several interesting 
works have from time to time made their appearance, prin- 
cipally in the Russian language. Besides attending to the 
publication of its own Memoirs, which have now reached a 
seventy-second volume, (the tenth of a new series,) the 
Academy is appointed by Government to superintend the 
editing and publishing of a Russian Gazette, which is looked 
upon as an official paper. 

The interest which the formation of an Egyptian Museum 
in St. Petersburgh appeared to me to have excited among 
many persons of distinction and scientitc men in that capital, 
induced me to offer to the President of the Imperial Acade- 
my, to deliver a public lecture on the art of embalming 
among the ancient Egyptians, and to exhibit that unique 
specimen of an Egyptian Mummy which has been a few 
years in my possession, and which I had thought proper to 
send (for that purpose) by sea to St. Petersburgh, where it 
had safely arrived before me. In this manner I thought I 
might best convey to that scientific body the expression of 
my feelings at having been named one of its members on 
the proposition of the President. The offer was accepted 
most readily, and the Salle des conferences in the principal 
building of the Academy having been selected for the 
purpose, the day was fixed, and a regular announcement 
was inserted in the Court Gazette, inviting all those 
who were attached to science, or who felt interested in 
Egyptian antiquities, to attend the meeting. The removal 
of the bridge, owing to the unsettled state of the river, 
for some days prevented the execution of our project ; 
at length, on the 4th of December, 1827,- having made 


every necessary preparation, with the assistance of Mon- 
sieur Savenko, a very promising young Russian surgeon, 
whom I had had the pleasure of knowing a few years 
before, in London — I had the honour of delivering a lec- 
ture, in the French language, on the subject already men- 
tioned, to a very large assembly of highly distinguished 
individuals and Academicians, now my colleagues, and 
from whom I felt convinced I should experience every 
degree of indulgence. A foreigner, but lately arrived in 
the country, who was about to address in a language 
not his own, a meeting of nearly 800 persons, distin- 
guished for rank and reputation, among whom were the 
President of the Academy himself. Count Stanislaus Po- 
tocky. Count Stroganoff, Count Laval, Monsieur Speransky, 
Monsieur Boulgacoff, Baron Scholing, the English and 
several foreign ministers and noblemen, the President of the 
Medico-Chirurgical Academy, and a number of Professors, 
was not likely to proceed to his task with a very light 
heart. However, the mummy was produced, the process 
of embalming was explained and illustrated, and several 
other collateral and curious points were touched upon. 
The many objects referable to the subject under considera- 
tion, which I had collected together on the tables, and 
among which were some from the Museum of the Academy 
itself, recdved, each in its turn, a proper degree of atten- 
tion ; and tant bien que maly I persevered in going through 
my allotted duty, striving all the time to make the audi- 
ence feel some part of that degree of enthusiasm which a 
man, who has pursued a favourite subject for some years, is 
ever found to experience. The President was pleased, a 
day or two afterwards, to present me with one of the se- 
cular medals of the Academy, as a memento of this grati- 
fying circumstance of my life. 




Continuation of the Imperial and otber Buildings and Institutions 
connected with Science and the Fine Arts. — Preyailing taste for 
the Arts. — A self-taught Painter. — Titian and Mr. Sieger.^ 
Private Collections of Pictures. — Count Stroganoff^s GaUerj. — 
The President d'Olenine. — Academy op Arts. — The building.— 
The Museum. — Public Exhibition by Native Artists. — Russian 
Sculptors and Painters. — Professor Vorobieff and his Picture of 
St. Petersburgh^ and of Sunset on the Dead Sea. — Orlowalcy. -^i- 
Liberality of Government respecting the Education of Young Ar- 
tists. — The Triumfhal Arch of 1812. — Society for encouraging 
Russian Lithography. — Roumiantzow's Museum of Curiosities. 
— The HoTELDES Mines. — The building — The Establishment 
compared with others of a similar kind in Europe. — Minerals. — 
Mines of Siberia. — Large Specimens of Native Gold. — Instruc- 
tion in practical Mining. — Domestic Arrangement for the Stu- 
dents. — Produce of the Gold and Platina Mines in the Oural 
Mountains. — Origin of the wealth of the Demidoff Family,— 
The Miner's Hammer. — Style of living of the present Privy 
Counsellor Demidoff.— His death.— Societe Economique libre of 
St. Petersburgh. — School for Agriculture^ Rural Economy, and the 
Useful Arts, founded by Countess Sophia Stroganoff. — Cabinet of 
Arts and Antiquities of Mons. 8vinnin.*-*THE Botanic Garpin. 

There is scarcely a house of any consequence in St 
Petersburgh in which one does not find some valuable 
pictures as part of its decorative furniture. It is a fashion 
among the great of every capital to embellish their rest* 
dences with paintings ; but in St. Petersburgh that practice 



iqvpeared to me to extend even farther. It is curious to re- 
maik that many of the paintings so applied have been pur- 
chased in the English market, where foreign traders have 
often brought valuable pictures from the Continent, without 
finding a compensating price for them from the inhabitants. 
In the mansion of Count Michel Woronzow, some really va- 
luable pictures^ selected with great taste in this country and 
abroady enliven and give importance to the fine suite of 
apartments on the principal story. Count Michel, with a 
decided taste for the Fine Arts, and an anxiety to see them 
cultivated in his native country, has contributed to the en- 
couraganent ct Russian artists. I saw at his house the per- 
formances of a self-taught painter, originally a peasant on 
one of the Count^s estates, consisting of portraits, which but 
for a striking singularity in the manner of distributing the 
light over the figure, would be considered as very creditable 
performances for an artist who had enjoyed the advantage 
of a regular education. The singularity to which I allude, 
consists in throwing the light fully and directly in front of 
the picture, and not from either side or from behind, with 
the addition of a very dark ground, so as to give to the 
head the appearance of a marble bust in relief, placed 
within a gold frame. I have never had occasion to see 
such an effect produced in a portrait before ;* nor can I 
say that it is to be admired. However, this is not the 
<mly instance of original talent in the department of paint- 
ing in Russia, nor the best, and it is creditable to the 
Government, as well as to the superior classes, that they 
mBord encouragement to all such gifted individuals. Among 
the valuable paintings in th^ house of Count Woronzow, 
I noticed a Caracci from the gallery of Mr. Watson Taylor, 
and an undoubted Titian, remarkable for the circumstances 
eonneoted with its purchase and present condition. The 
Count happening, one day, to be on his way to a sale of pic- 


tures in London, accompanied by M. Sieger, noticed outside 
of another auction room, the advertisement of other paintings 
for sale, stated to have been the property of a Mr. Harri- 
son. ^* O! " says Mr. Sieger, '^ if these be Harrison^s pictures 
there must be a Titian amongst them of great merit, which 
your Excellency had better look after \** and up-stairs they 
walked, when the intelligent artist marched straight up to 
the picture in question — recognized it immediately, al- 
though dirty and in a very indifferent condition, — and urged 
the Count to purchase it at the sale. This was effected 
in about an hour for little more than SOO guineas, there 
being at the time very few other purchasers in . the room, 
besides picture-dealers. The painting has proved to be 
a great prize ; and has since been transferred from the 
panel to canvass, with great success, by a Russian artist, 
who is allowed by the Emperor to have an attelier in the 
Hermitage for similar operations, which he has been carry- 
ing on for some time in the happiest and most skilful man- 
ner. But these are not the only remarkable circumstances 
belonging to the painting in question, for in the course of the 
process of transferring it from the panel to the canvass, a 
discovery was made of another painting of the same sub- 
ject^ though treated in a different manner, which had been 
cancelled or painted over, and of which Count Woronzow 
took care to have a drawing made, now in his possession. 
This is, I believe, one of the few examples of B.pefUimento 
on so large a scale having been detected in a picture of a 
celebrated master. 

I might descant also on some of the fine paintings which 
I had occasion to observe in the houses of Count Laval, 


Count Poushkine, M. Balk Poileff, and many others, who 
do not pretend to have galleries or specific collections, but 
who yet afford as many examples of the prevailing taste 
among persons of distinction to adorn their residences with 


the finer productions of the ancient masters; but such 
a course is foreign to my purpose, although it would go 
far to prove that with so marked a taste for the art of 
painting amongdt the better classes of society, it is fair to 
presume that much will be effected in giving a proper 
direction, and developing the natural talents of the Rus- 
sians for that art. I must not, however, dismiss the Palace 
of Count and Countess Laval without more particularly 
mentioning, that, independently of its great merits as an 
architectural monument for taste as well as size, it claims 
special attention on account of the rich assemblage of an« 
tiques, various objects of virtH and rare prints, besides the 
paintings of great value which decorate three of its largest 
saloons. The affable and hospitable manner in which the 
noble host and hostess receive strangers and their, own 
friends, on stated nights, adds greatly to the feelings of 
gratification experienced in visiting their mansion. 

If we look to the professed Collections of private indivi- 
duals, of both paintings and objects of sculpture, as a farther 
eridence of the spirit with which the Russians encourage 
and seem attached to those arts, we shall find in St. Peters- 
burgh the Grosvenors, the Staffords, and the Hopes, exhi- 
biting in splendid mansions, assemblages equally surprising 
of every thing that can illustrate painting as well as sculp- 
ture. The collection of the late venerable Count Stroganoff, 
tbougli less remarkable for the number than for the ex- 
treme choice of its pictures and antiques, contains valuable 
productions of the Italian masters, which even the galleries 
of the Hermitage cannot boast. The Count had passed 
almost the whole of his life in the study and contemplation 
of objects of the fine arts, and being extremely wealthy, the 
acquisition of the most valuable specimens which attract- 
ed his attention in the course of his numerous travels,, 
became a matter of pleasure as well as of necessity to him. 


His collection thus became gradually more eztensive ; and 
to add to its value, a descriptive catalogue, as well as a 
finely engraved representation of its contents, were pub- 
lished at his expense. All lovers of the fine arts are ad- 
mitted to this collection, Russians, as well as strangers, 
with a liberality highly creditable to the heirs of that ex- 
cellent nobleman, who, in his life-time, I was told, took 
great pleasure in himself conducting through the gal- 
lery all those strangers who were admitted, or had been 
invited to view it, pointing out to them tlie several 
beauties, and the interesting history of several of the pre- 
cious objects contained in it. This collection is in the 
Palace of the StroganoiFs, a very striking pile of build- 
ing situated in the Nevskoi Prospekt, near the Mdika 

But it is time to turn to the consideration of what the 
Grovernroent itself seems to have done for the encourage-' 
ment of the fine arts in this modem capital of the Empire. 
A fortunate circumstance had procured me the acquaint- 
ance of the President of the Imperial Academy of Fine 
Arts, Monrieur d^Olenine, a name well known to anti- 
quaries, and a gentleman heartily devoted to science and 
literature, between which, and the public service, in a civil 
capacity of high trust, (being Member of the Imperial 
Council,) he divides his time and attention. Furnished 
with his letter to the resident Director, I lost not a mo- 
ment in visiting that establishment. The Russians are 
indebted for the foundation of this Academy to their Em- 
press Elizabeth, to whom it was suggested by Count 
Shouvalofil At first its endowment was only 9^,000 roubles 
a-year, but Catherine, with the present house, also aug^ 
mented the annual income for its support to three times that 
sum, and it has since received from the munificence of 
succeeding sovereigns a farther addition. Of the building 


itself I have already spoken : it stands conspicuous on the 
rigfat bank of the Neva, opposite the English Quay, and is 
by far the most classical and chaste of its size in St. Pe- 
tersburgh) and does honour to the taste and ability of its 
architect, Kakorinov, a native of Siberia. It is a square 
ftructure, detached from every other buildings with an 
elevation consisting of a basement and two stories. In the 
centre and at each end there is a handsome portico of four 
Doric columns, rising from the upper part of the basement 
story, and reaching to the entablature which crowns the 
whole edifice. The centre portico of the principal facade 
is surmounted by a pediment, the tympanum of which is 
fiOed with appropriate bas-reliefs. Behind it rises a very 
low cupola. The sides of the building are without porticos 
in the centre, but in other respects their elevation differs 
little from the front. The principal entrance is in the 
middle of that projecting part of the basement which sup- 
ports the central portico; but for an institution of such 
magnitude such an entrance is misquine and not in keeping 
with the rest This is the only defect of its exterior. Inter- 
nally eveiy part is a perfect model of architecture, and as 
the plan, as well as the elevation of this really beautiful 
Palace is deserving of admiration, I prevailed on my pub* 
lisber, to whom more authors than one are indebted for 
a very fair proportion of their fame, to add a sketch of 
both, notwithstanding the already extensive number of 
graphic and xylographic illustrations, which I have sue* 
oessfuUy claimed at his hands, in hopes of adding a pn>« 
per degree of interest to the work* 

A magnificent staircase, with double flights of steps of 
granite, leads to a grand pentagonal landing-place, with 
broad galleries around it, supporting by means of Ionic 
columns the cupola, which crowns the whole. From this 
we entered the rotunda, a fine apartment, of exquisite pro- 


portions, decorated by statues and busts. On the right, a 
large door opens into the conference room, which is of con- 
siderable length and width, having in the centre, and at 
its upper end, a large table, placed on a platform, at the 
head of which stands the full-length portrait of Nicholas, 
under a rich canopy. The walls, opposite the windows of 
this room, are hung with large paintings, the productions 
of Russian artists. I particularly noticed the view of 
Kazan, by Agrumoff, one of the painters of whom the Rus- 
sians are justly proud; and another picture of great 
merit by the same master, representing the Coronation of 
Michail Federovitch. There is also a spirited portrait of 
Peter riding his charger at Poltawa, by ShebonoflT. On 
the left of the rotunda, another large door leads to a long 
gallery of models from the antiques, ranged right and left, 
and very complete. Beyond this are the spacious rooms 
occupied by the several classes of students residing in the 
establishment. The inner court of the building is circular, 
and around this extends the museum of the Academy. 
The centre of the court is occupied by a fine copy of 
the celebrated monument to Minin and Pojarski, by Mar^ 
tos, a living Russian sculptor, worthy to rank with the 
most eminent of modern times. 

The museum of the Academy is not rich in valuable 
paintings ; neither does it possess many very extraordinary 
specimens of classical sculpture ; but among the latter it 
is impossible not to admire one of those bold conceptions 
and finished productions of Michael Angelo, which are so 
rarely to be met with in foreign collections, representing 
the stooping figure of a young man, five feet high, cut out 
of a solid block of the whitest marble. It is a most exqui- 
site piece of sculpture. Not far from this, in a division of 
the museum apart, stands a copy of the colossal statue of 
Napoleon, by Chaudet, presented by Count Wittgenstein. 


Tbe assemblage of casts and other models, of most of 
the ancient and modem buildings of celebrity, possessed by 
the Academy, is very valuable ; nor is the numerous col- 
lection of original designs less interesting. 

In the first fortnight of September a triennial exhibi- 
tion takes place in this building, of the productions of 
native artists. That which had closed just before our 
arrival was considered to have been very successful. Some 
of the paintings, particularly those which were deemed to 
have carried away the palm of merit, as well as some of 
tbe specimens of modem Russian sculpture and models of 
architecture, were still remmning, and allowed me an oppor- 
tunity of judging of the present state of Russian art. 
Pimenow and Demutt are sculptors of considerable merit. 
The historical pictures of Lossenko are, considering the 
present degraded state of that branch of art in every coun- 
try in Europe, worthy of commendation. When it is re- 
membered that he whom the Russians regard as Le Pire 
de rEcole Russe in historical painting^-Agrumoff, flou- 
rished only twenty years ago— it must be a matter of sur- 
prise that painters of such a degree of merit as those I shall 
hereafter mention, should have so immediately followed the 
appearance of that talented individual. There is also among 
the modem artists at St. Petersburgh a landscape-painter, 
who is moreover a professor at the Academy, and whose 
efforts in perspective delineations are perfectly miraculous. 
That paiiiters of that style of architectural perspective, 
which presents such an illusion at our Diorama, should suc- 
ceed in producing that wonderful effect, when they have 
large masses, space, and other attendant circumstances, as 
well as all the tricks of catoptric to assist them, is not sur- 
prisiiig; but that such a result should be produced on 
Bierely a small square piece of canvass, unaided by station, 
light, or any other means of deception, is an example rarely 


to be met with. Professor Vorobiew, however, has succeed- 
ed to that extent, in all his perspective paintings, and parti- 
cularly in a performance which I had the pleasure of seeing 
nearly completed in his Studio, representing a striking pa^ 
noramic view of that part of the city of St Petersbui^ 
which lies on both banks of the Neva, including its most 
splendid edifices, taken from a spot near the Corps de$ Mines^ 
the only point, in my opinion, from which a really striking 
representation of that magnificent capital can be obtained. 
The present is the first attempt of the kind, and it is a most 
successful one. His painting of Simset on the ^* D^ad Sea,^ 
which had just been exhibited and greatly admired, taken 
from one of his numerous original drawings executed in the 
course of his travels in Palestine, imparts to the observer a 
feeling of suffocation at the sight of the burning and sul- 
phurous atmosphere overhanging the lurid lake, through 
which the red sun with difficulty darts his horizontal rays. 
But that this picture represents reality, I should have 
said that the conception is worthy of the poetical mind of 
Martin, the metaphysical painter. Monsieur Vorobiew very 
obligingly showed me his numerous collection of sketches 
and architectural plans made during his travels to Con- 
stantinople and Jerusalem, which, together with his two pic- 
tures just mentioned, deserve the honour of the burin. But 
there are no engravers, I believe, of very great eminence 
at this moment at St. Petersburgh, excepting one or two, 
whose charges are so immoderately high, that the prints 
would find no purchasers among the amateurs of engravings. 
There is another academician, whose fame has extended 
all over Russia. I mean Orlowsky. The nature of the 
subjects on which his pencil delights to lavish the force, as 
well as the invention, of a highly gifted genius, is almost 
too ignoble to engross so much merit. I confess myself 


devoid of taste on such subjects ; but as the name of 
Orlowsky has long since reached the most civilized capitals 
in Europe, my readers will perhaps feel curious to know 
what a French author, (a nation ot lively rather than 
impartial writers,) has said of that artist. 

" Get artiste,'' says Monsieur Ancelot, " a conquis une 
reputation Europ^enne que justifient la grace et Tesprit de 
ses piquantes compositions. Les tableaux populaires, les 
dievaux, les soldats, ses caricatures, sont tr^s recherch^s 
des amateurs, et pay^s au poids de Tor. Dou6 d'une pro- 
digieuse facility mus capricieux, comme tous les grand 
talens, et paresseux avec delices, il ne se decide que tr^ 
difficilement k travailler. Ses ouvrages se distinguent par 
one hardiesse de pinceau, qui ne coute rien k la puret^ ; 
par une v^rite naive qui n^exclut pas la malice.^ This 
extraordinary character possesses a very curious collection of 
arms of all countries and of all ages and pictures, which is 
ri$tted by almost every stranger arriving at St. Petersburgh. 

The establishment I have been describing is not a purely 
academical institution for the fine arts, but combines the 
advantage of a college, in which upwards of 200 students 
are educated at the expense of Government, besides several 
others who are admitted for the trifling annual payment of 
from 800 to 1000 roubles. The boys are maintained, as 
wdil as instructed, and lodged in the house, where they ge- 
nerally remain from ten to twelve, and even fourteen years. 
They are divided into classes, and instructed till the age of 
fourteen, in all the preliminary branches of education and 
preparatory studies suitable to an artist. At the latter age 
they are expected to determine what branch they intend 
more particularly to cultivate, such as painting, engraving, 
sculpture, music, architecture, or mechanics. Examina- 
tions take place in the presence of a concourse of people. 


Those students who have for four successive times deserved 
a prize, are sent for the space of six years at the expense of 
the Academy to travel in different parts of Europe. 

I ascended the handsome cast-iron staircase which con- 
ducts from the principal to the second story, and leads to 
the dormitories of the Yx>llegian8. These range round the 
great inner court, immediately above the circular galleries 
of the Museum ; and though plain and free from every 
species of embellishment or costly furniture, appeared to 
be kept in a state of perfect cleanliness. At that period 
there were only 160 beds in use, the number of students 
not being so large as it had previously been. I noticed 
on the side- walls of the iron staircase under the cupola 
which lights it, four spirited bas-reliefs, executed by two 
sculptors already named, Pimenow and Demoutt. 

At the conclusion of the last chapter of th^ First Part, 
I mentioned a triumphal arch, stretching across the road 
which leads to the great entrance gate of St. Petersburgh. 
This is perhaps the most appropriate place for introducing 
a description of that building, not as it now is, for the 
present can only be considered as one which was hastily 
thrown up of wood, to receive the late Emperor Alexander 
on his return from Paris ; but as it is intended to be, and 
as it will be shortly. The design, which is by the late 
eminent architect, Guarenghi, is too handsome to' be 
changed for another in the new intended structure (see 
plate, page 414;) but the materials and the execution 
will be far more valuable. It will be built by Starof. an 
architect of great merit, who erected the New Pantheon 
or Church of St. Alexander Nevsko'i. The materials to 
be employed in its construction will be porphyry, granite, 
and marble, from the Oural Mountains. Dining one day at 
the President d^Olenine's, who has naturally been consulted 
on the subject, and from whom I received my information. 



I met M. Kokovine, director-general of the vast establish- 
meot of Ecatherinhof in Siberia, for cutting and polishing 
marbles, porphyry, and precious stones, who had brought a 
variety of specimens of the different materials required, and 
was on his way back with those which had been selected and 
approved of for the construction. Of the remainder, form- 
ing a very interesting collection of forty-eight square pieces 
of highly polished porphyry, jasper, agate, and granites, from 
the Oural Mountains, the President was kind enough to make 
me a present as a souvenir of our acquaintance. The dif- 
ferent pieces for the Triumphal Arch will be prepared at 
Ecatherinhoff, according to the plans of the architect, 
ready to be put up, and forwarded thence to St. Peters- 
burgh, by the rivers Tchusova'ia, Kama, and Volga. The 
body of the arch will be of a yellow veined marble, spotted 
with black, JEind differing from the Siena marble from that 
circumstance ; the columns, of another species of Siberian 
marble, — the shaft yellowish, the bases of a white grey, and 
the capitals of a dazzling white marble. The frieze is to 
consist of a brilliant brown marble, in order to receive with 
eflect the inscription, in gold letters. The pedestals for the 
statues are to be of a species of porphyritic marble, and 
opinions are divided as to the proper material for the sta- 
tues themselves. The President very properly thinks that 
they ought to be of bronze. To place a statue of common 
marble on a dark reddish pedestal, would be to create a 
contrast most shocking in sculptural architecture. 

The first stone of this gigantic structure, which will vie 
in grandeur and proportion not only with the remains of the 
great Roman Afchesi^ but with some of the colossal Egyptian 
temples also, had been laid with great military pomp exactly 
two months before our arrival at St. Petersburgh. The Em- 
peror rode to the spot, and all the oiBcers, sub-officers, and 
soldiers of the guard, who wear the medal for the capture 



of Paris, to the number of about ten thousand, were pre- 
sent on the occasion. This monument is erected in 
petual commemoration of the return of the 
Guards from Paris, after the glorious campaign of 1812 ; 
and although the Imperial Government defrays the ex- 
penses, the general of cavalry who commanded those corps 
on that memorable occasion, Theodore Ouvaroff, contri- 
buted a sum of 400,000 roubles, or about «&18,000 8t«^ 
ling, towards its erection ; while the corporation of mer- 
chants of St. Petersburgh presented a sum of SOOO guineas 
for the same purpose. 

Of the style and design of the Arch, I need not oflRer 
a single observation, as the sketch introduced at the con- 
clusion of the First Part sufficiently speaks for itself. 

Driving one day along the Nevskoi Prospekt in my 
sledge, my attention was attracted by an inscription on the 
outside of a small but neat building, indicating that a so> 
ciety for the encouragement of lithographic engraving by 
native artists was established there. On entering it, I no- 
ticed a large collection of views of St. Petersburgh and 
its environs, of the size of a large folio sheet, hung round 
the room, drawn and lithographed, and some of them 
coloured and varnished, said to be the production of Hii». 
sian artists. They appear to be very creditable essays ; 
but other nations are far before them in this pleasing art. 
The establishment is praiseworthy, and deserves support. 
The same society have published a collection of linear ar- 
chitectural elevations and plans of the most remarkable 
buildings of St. Petersburgh, with their sections and dx*- 
mensions, delightfully etched on copper. It is astonishing 
how cheaply such a collection may be purchased. Thne 
are four numbers, which complete the whole. Each cod* 
tains about twenty such copper engravings; some of 


wfajch are very large, and these are sold for twenty-five 
roubles, (£1. 3s.) 

The late Chancellor Roumiantzoff, one of the most liberal 
patrons of science and literature in Russia, bequeathed to 
the nation, at his death, a large cabinet of antiquities, 
together with two houses which he possessed on the Eng- 
lish Quay, and which he had purchased from Mr. Thomas 
Ware, an Engli^ merchant. To these he added funds for 
the support and eiflargement of both, with directions to form 
a Museum of Antiquities, Curiosities, and Natural His- 
tory, together with a library, which should be open to the 
puUic. His worthy successor. Count Serge Roumiantzoff^ 
the surviving brother, has already executed the task in 
party by erecting on their site one of the most splendid 
buildings on the Granite Quay, already so rich in archi- 
tectural beauty. The front consists of a single handsome 
colonnade, resting on a rusticated basement, and ranging 
along the principal and second story : the proportions of the 
cdumns are really colossal, and the general effect is very 
imposing. I have not had an opportunity of viewing the 
interior, nor the different objects of which the Museum is 
to consist, as the Count was absent ; but persons of good 
authority, who had seen the late Chancellor's cabinet, which 
is to form the nucleus of the new Museum, speak with 
much confidence of its value and importance. 

The richest cabinet of Oriental Coins in Europe is to be 
found in this collection ; and Professor Fraehn has just 
completed a catalogue of it. It contains, besides many 
other remarkable ones, a complete collection of all the 
coma of the hordes of the Golden Chersonesus, of the 
Abbassides, of the Caliphs of the house of Ommeja, of the 
Edris of Morocco, of the Sabarides of Khorasan, and 
those of Bucharia, the Princes of Tulun in Egypt, tlie 



Baiden, the Khans of Tartary, the successors of Timour, 
the Sophis of Persia, the Princes Djajatai, the Moguls, 
the Sultans of Turkey, the Kings of Georgia, and many 
others. The late Count Roumiantzoff, Chancellor of the 
Empire, died in January 18S6, much regretted by all 
those who appreciated the importance and utility of the 
several institutions of which he was a most liberal patrcw. 
He had long enjoyed the confidence of the late Emperor 
Alexander in the highest degree, and had greatly distin- 
guished himself in the preceding mgns. Since the com- 
pletion of the new building, it has been publicly declared by 
an ukase of the Emperor, to belong to the department of 
public instruction ; or in other words, it has been exempted 
from taxes, on condition that no part of it, or any revenue 
arising from the estate, on which other buildings have been 
erected, shall be otherwise devoted than to the support 
and increase of the establishment, to be hereafter styled, 
'* Le Mus^e Roumiantzoff." 

Ever since my first arrival in this capital I had been 
strongly urged to visit the Imperial institution called the 
H6tel des Mines, destined principally for the education 
of mining engineers for the service of Government and 
the army. Monsieur Demitrius Naryschkine, the Governor 
of the Crimea, whom I was in the daily habit of seeing 
during his residence in St. Petersburgh, and to whom I 
am indebted for more than one mark of polite attention, 
feeling an equal desire of viewing that establishment, un- 
dertook to procure the necessary permission, and under his 
escort I proceeded to visit it in company with Dr. Morton, 
an English gentleman, who had once been a pupil of mine, 
and whom I had recommended to Count Woronzow as his 
domestic physician. 

As is the case with all the other public edifices, the build-> 
ing of the Ecole des Mines attracts attention from its 


grandeur as well as magnitude. The portico in parti- 
cular is a very striking feature in the elevation; nor is 
the vestibule, with a wide staircase in front, branching 
oflT to the right and left, and leading to the principal story, 
less imposing. The architect has likewise shown great 
judgment in the distribution, as well as taste in the arrange- 
ment of the different rooms and galleries, which surpass any 
thing of the kind I have seen in Europe. The ** Cabinet 
des Mines" at Paris, in which I spent many weeks during 
my residence in that capital several years ago, is a Go- 
vernment institution, which may, perhaps/ have served as 
a model for the one in St. Fetersburgh. It is rich in 
minerals and in specimens, illustrative of the geological for- 
mation of all the Departments of France. Their arrange- 
ment displays great taste, and tbe building in which they 
are placed^ is extensive, and has the imposing exterior of a 
palace. But even that fabric and its contents must yield 
the palm of superiority to the H6tel des Mines of the 
modem Russian capital, the wealth of which, and the 
beauty of whose internal architectural embellishments, ex- 
cite the admiration of every stranger. 

Although the Institution, which is comprehended under 
the denomination of H6tel des Mines, took its rise so far 
back as the reign of Feter the Great, the date of the 
<^ning of the building in its present complete state is as 
recent as 1819. The Great Conference-hall, measuring 350 
feet in length, and lighted by twelve windows, is decorated 
with the portraits of the different ministers and directors 
under whose particular management the establishment has 
flourished. The full-length portraits of the late and pre- 
sent Emperor are placed^ one at each end of the room^ 
where the roof is supported by columns of white Scagliola. 

Passing through a rotunda in which we saw arranged, in 
glaas cases, a complete collection of all the Russian as well 

150 HdTBL X)£8 MINES. 

as foreign coins in gold, silver, and copper ; and also of 
silver medals, illustrative of the history of Russia unoe 
Peter the Great, we entered a magnificent hall, occupy- 
ing the whole of one side of the building facing the mouth 
of the Neva, in which^are displayed, in the most favour^^- 
ble manner, the models of localities of mines, and the diffie- 
rent machinery employed in them for the various purposes 
of extracting the ore, ajud separating the metals on the spot. 
It is here that a correct notion may be formed not only of the 
mineral wealth of this empire, but of what the ingenuity of 
a Russian is capable, in the formation of ev^ species of 
contrivance calculated to extort from reluctant nature its 
bidden riches. The topographical modeLs too, and those 
intended to represent the geognpstic structure of soils in 
different Governments or Provinces of Russia, are executed 
with a neatness, and kept in such order, that on viewing 
them one becomes really enamoured of the science to whidi 
they serve as illustrations. A model of the Lake Olonet^ 
from which iron ore ia obtained ; another, of the Mountain 
Blagodate, in the range of the Oural Chain, the richest mine 
of gold in the Government of Perm ; a second, of a mine 
of silver near Tobolsk, from which 800 poods, or 28^800 
pounds of silver are produced annually, and in which the 
excavation has now proceeded to the d^>th of ISO toises, 
are among the first to be noticed in this gallery. The 
latter model is dissected so as to exhibit in a very distinct 
manner the various strata through which the miners have 
penetrated. In the Oural Mountains, not far from Ecatfae- 
rineburg, gold-sand is found in abundanccj^ and very rich in 
ore. The sand is collected on the sur£ace, and the various 
models of madiines, umple to a great degree, employed 
by the miners to separate the precious metak, are here 
displayed in regular gradation. One of these, invented by 
Osipoff, separates in a most ingenious manner, by meana of 


two lateral streams, the grains of gold from a fine mica- 
ceous sand with which it is mixed. The sand is of a yel- 
low ochre colour : from 100 poods of it, one pound of gold 
is obtained by that process. The expenses of the process 
and establishment for conducting it» are to the value of 
gold obtained as 1 J to 14. This separation of the gold 
from the silicious sand, has given rise to a variety of mo- 
dels. That which serves for separating the gold from 
day, found in a superficial stratum belonging to a pri- 
vate individual, and which is supposed to be the richest 
in the country, is likewise the invention of a Siberian. As 
the gold-sand is frequently found in those districts scattered 
over the fields, it becomes important for the individuals pos- 
sessing them to test their grounds frcnn time to time, and 
over their whole extent, in search of the precious ore. In 
this, they are frequently successful ; but the processes hav- 
ing hitherto been very troublesome, a Mr. Shultze has 
invented a carriage laboratory, which is despatched to diffe- 
rent parts of the estetes in search of the mineral, detecting 
its presence by a succession of operations all performed in 
die carriage laboratory in question, to whidi the sand is sub- 
jected at almost every step for that purpose. A model of 
diis carriage we saw in this gallery, where there is also 
another and a plan of the laige esteblishment, and all its 
machinery, the celebrated Foundery at Ecatherineburg in 
the Government of Perm, where, among other operations5 
diat of copper-coining is carried on to an extent unknown 
in any other country. This first gallery is ornamented with 
green Scagliola.oolumns, and the pavement, which is beau* 
tifully inlaid, is here and there protected by carpets. The 
next u a magnificent hall incnisted with yellow ScagUoIa, 
and divided by two open ranges of Doric columns of the 
same material into a middle and two lateral portions, the 
columns supporting an elegant and wide gallery, in which 

152 UdTBL DBS MINfiS. 

is deposited the valuable library of the establishment 
The ceiling is beautifully painted with allegorical figures 
in chiaroscuro by Scotti. Along the room are arranged en 
each side twelve very handsome glass cases containing spe- 
cimens of general mineralogy, and as many in the recesses 
between the windows by which it is lighted. 

Nothing can equal the beauty of these specimens, all of 
which seem to have been selected with great care, most of 
them being from ten to fourteen inches square in the 
aggregate outline. In front of the two ranges of columns 
down the middle of the hall, are disposed the physical, 
geodesical, and mathematical instruments, forming a very 
fine and complete collection, among which we could not 
fail to recognise the superiority of those manufactured in 
England. At one of the extremities of this hall there 
is a single crystal of smoky quartz, found near £ca- 
therineburg, the circumference of which is six feet ten 
inches, and its weight S5 poods, or 1260 pounds. Each face 
is sixteen inches wide. An equally extraordinary specimen 
of mineral nature I observed in one of the m^ny adjoining 
rooms, consisting of a* portion of fossilized wood from 
Siberia, measuring six feet in circumference, with an inter- 
nal incrustation of crystallized amethysts within the fissures. 

But the richest part of the collection is contained in a 
small room fitted up all round, as well as in the centre, 
with iron-bound cases beautifully ornamented. The cases 
or cabinets in the middle of the room contain a variety 
of specimens of native gold, found either in the mines be- 
longing to Government, or in those of private individuals* 
One of them which was discovered three feet and a half 
deep in the sand, weighs more than twenty-four pounds of 
the purest gold, and is amorphous. In a second cabinet there 
is another large collection of specimens of native gold^ all 
of them amorphous, and from the sands of Perm and Oren- 


boiug, but containing not one crystal amongst them of that 
metaL It may be supposed that these two precious cabinets 
are kept under lock and key, and watched with becoming 
care. Near these pieces of gold there is the largest specimen, 
I believe, of solid platinum in existence, from the mines of 
M. DemidofiT^ weighing ten pounds. Several other specimens 
of native gold, some amorphous, others delightfully crystal- 
lized, many exhibiting the dendritic form, are here collected, 
amounting in weight altogether to nine poods, or 824 pounds, 
all of which were found in the gold sands of Siberia. The 
largest piece of gold was obtained in Mai'ch 18^, from one 
of the richest mines of the district of Zlatooust, named 
after the Emperor Alexander, who condescended to work at 
it with his own hands while on a visit to it, immediately 
after its discovery in June 1824. The glass cases along 
the side of the room exhibit the most complete collection of 
Russian minerals that has been as yet formed ; though it 
will require many years before specimens of the whole mi- 
neral wealth of the empire can be brought together. Among 
those that attracted our notice, I was struck with a colossal 
specimen of malachite, perfectly unique of its kind, weigh- 
ing ninety-ax poods, or 3,456 pounds. The common ave- 
rage price of this beautiful combination of copper and car- 
bcmic add in the St. Petersburgh market, is twenty-five 
roubles the pound; so that this specimen, although frac- 
tured in some parts, is worth 86,250 rouble^ (3,750/. ster- 
ling). A specimen of dioptase, or hydrosiliciated copper, 
such as I have not seen anywhere else, with some beautiful 
crystals of native gold and platinum lying by the side of 
it, also exdted my attention, as well as a crystal of Ziroone, 
larger than a hen's egg. The minerals are divided accord- 
ing to Govemmentsy and excellent maps are suspended 
within reach of them to point out the localities. It is im- 
possible to offer to students greater facilities, or with more 


profusion to lay before them temptations for attachment 
to one of the most alluring of the natural sciences. To 
complete the whole, several beautiful mahogany cases are 
fitted up at the termination of one of the principal rooms, 
containing specimens of every variety of marble, porphyry, 
granite, as well as precious stones, found in different parts of 
Russia, forming with the topographic illustrations of their lo- 
calities, drawn on tables near it, a most instructive collection. 

The second division of this establishment contains a series 
of handsome and spacious apartments, in which are display- 
ed the results of the successive steps made by the natives in 
the application of the riches with which nature has so abun- 
dantly supplied them, to the useful arts ; and of the progress 
they have made in every species of manufacture connected 
with mineralogy. This collection is highly creditable to 
the talents of the country. It is inferior, in several respects, 
to a similar exhibition which England might produce, and 
even to what France and Grermany in general, could show 
in many of the departments, though not in all ; but the ele- 
ments of perfection are every where visible, and this inferi* 
ority may not last long. The Russians require in these 
matters an undivided and really zealous support on the 
part of Grovemment, and a degree of constancy and steady 
perseverance on their own part, to rise at no distant period 
to a level with the most successful nations in the manufius- 
ture of metals. 

Highly gratified with every thing we had beheld, we 
considered that our pleasing task was at an end, but our 
intelligent and officious conductor explained to us, that 
having once seen the produce of mining, and examined 
the models representing its Various machines, it was im- 
portant that we should form a correct notion of the prac- 
tical manner in which the art of mining, and a knowledge 
of the structure of mines, as well as of the surrounding 


Strata, was imparted to the resident students of the £»- 
tablisbment. For this purpose, having supplied each of 
us with a lighted taper, we followed him into the bowels 
of the earth, under the building, by a tortuous road, and 
penetrated into the interior of a series of mining chambers, 
the walls of which represented, by the aggregation of real 
specimens, the various stratifications which illustrate ge- 
ology, and the metalliferous veins, skilfully arranged. Here, 
also we observed the mode of sinking shafts, of making 
trenches and galleries, of cutting for the ore and carrying 
it out of the mine, the pumps employed to drain the 
mine, and every other utensil, machine, or process usually 
employed in such operations. The extent of this sub- 
terraneous practical school is very considerable. I found 
also that it was rather colder than was comfortable, and 
we were very glad to see daylight once more peep upon 
us at the termination of our long peregrination. Those 
parts of geology and the metalliferous veins which appeared 
to me to be most successfully represented, were the coal 
formatioDy and the veins of copper;, and in another place, of 
gdd in decomposing granite. 

It has been already stated that there are resident stu* 
dents in the establishment. The number of these amount 
to 880, two hundred of whom pay a pension of 800 roubles 
fr-year; the rest are firee Gov^nment places. They are 
educated in classical and every necessary preliminary 
branch of knowledge, until the proper age for studying 
the art of mining. They are subjected to a species of mi- 
litary discipline ; and whether at school or out of it, in the 
refectory or the dormitories, their movements are regulated 
by military precision and subordination, in masses, files, 
or detachments. We observed many of them drawn up 
in their plain, uniform, dark dress, as they were about to 
proceed from the recreation-room to the different classes. 


The teachers, the superintendents, and assistants, are all 
military officers belonging to the Mining-Engineer corps, 
who are distinguished for their profound knowledge of the 
principal as well as the collateral sciences connected with 
their department. 

If there be any fault to find in this Institution, it is in 
the superfluous degree of finery about every part of the 
domestic establishment of the young people, particularly 
in the article of bedding, both in the Dormitories and the 
Infirmary, in both which places each boy is provided 
with two down pillows, the bright white cases of which 
are enlivened by an inner covering, couleur de rose, and 
fastened by gay ribbons. What end can such superfluities 
answer ? The young Mining officer, on joining the army, 
is pretty certain of not sleeping on roses, and why have 
them now ? It is scarcely necessary, after this, to state that 
every part of the internal arrangement, the appearance of 
great cleanliness, and the air of comfort visible throughout 
the establishment, are such as must satisfy the most scru- 
pulous father of a favourite child. There are two Infir- 
maries attached to the Institution, the one for the young 
gentlemen, the other for the servants. The former consists 
of several rooms with two or at most three beds in each, 
and kept with a degree of magnificence scarcely required 
in such a place. However, better so, than in the opposite 

The Corps des Mines publishes a journal, which is 
written in French, and includes much interesting informa- 
tion. Among the many important official reports which 
it contains, that of the yearly produce of the Gold and 
Platina Mines is not the least curious : — 


The produce for the first half-year of 1827, stood thus : — 

Ekatherineburg . 15 pouds ... lb. SI zolot ... 

Pieces of native gold . ... i — 9S 75 p. 

Zlatoouflk ... 32 22 — 52 ... 

In crystals and native gold ... 6 — 77 ... 

Goroblahodate 6 — 26 ... 

Bohosloff 5 — 44 — ... 

Total 48 pds. 3 lb. 34 zolo. 75 p. 
Or^ 27>665 oz. valae 104^892/. sterling. 


Of Ferkh-lsieUk belonging to Mon- 
sieur Yakovleff^ Comet in the 
Guards . . • 21 pouds 6 lb. 76 zolot 

Of Neviansk, belonging to the heirs 

of Monsieur Yakovleff's father 14 — 15 — 87 

f Nijne Tahilski^ belonging to Mon- 
sieur Demidoff . . .24 22 — 1 — 

Of Kychtyme and Kasline^ belonging 
to the heirs of the merchant Ras- 
torgouyeff 19 — 25 — 83 — ^— 

FVom seven other mines belonging to 
other individuals^ among whom are 
the Countess Strogonoff and the 
Countess Schouvaloff . . 12 34 — 18 — — 

Total 92 pds. 24 lb. 73 za. 
Or^ 53^360 oz. value 202>323/. sterling. 
General total of the produce for the first half-year, 1827, 81,024 oz. 
vafaie 307,215/. sterling. 

Since my return to England, I have been favoured with 
the Report of the produce of the Gold Mines belonging 
to the Crown and private individuals, for the second half- 
year of 1827, which amounts, in the aggregate, to 
81,860 oz. value, 809,168/. sterling; making a general 
total of value, in money, for the whole year, (the oz. of 


gold, at SI. I65.) of 616,883/. sterling. On comparing the 
produce in gold of 18S7, with that of the year preceding, 
the former appears to be greater by 28,976 oz. It is 
to be hoped that we shall see something like a return of 
this kind from our Anglo-Mexican, Anglo-Brazilian, and 
Anglo-Peruvian schemes, which have survived the general 
wreck of all the Anglo-mining fortunes. 

The amount of Platina, from the same mines in the 
Oural Mountains, during the same period, including the 
Crown and private produce, has been 9% oz. the largest 
proportion of which was from the mine belonging to Mon- 
sieur Demidoff, one of the wealthiest private individuals in 

The history of the origin and wealth of this most re- 
spectable family, by the bye, and of their possession of sudi 
productive mines, is not destitute of interest, and I believe 
to be correctly as follows. The Demidoffs are descend- 
ants of a very industrious working miner, who had a small 
iron mine on the confines of Siberia. This was the grand- 
father of the present generation. Peter the Great, on 
visiting the spot, upwards of a hundred years ago, was 
much pleased with the activity and reputation for honesty 
of Demidoff; and being anxious to encourage the working 
of mines, and also to set an example of emulation for 
others, made him and his heirs, for ever, a present of an ex- 
tensive district immediately surrounding his small, patri- 
monial mine, with full liberty to work it. The enormous 
extent of ground thus obtained, proved a source of inex- 
haustible wealth to the good miner ; for it was found to 
cover some of the richest veins of iron, of the finest quality, 
in Russia. Its produce soon enriched the industrious pro- 
prietor, and his son having continued to work the mine, 
and to explore more ground, was enabled to employ the 
enormous capital thus justly acquired, in purchasing ad- 
ditional estates, and among others, that of Nijnetahilski, 


io which a gold mine was discovered soon after, that has 
yielded on an average, forty-nine poods yearly, or 100,679/. 
sterling, in pure gold. At the death of the son, a prodigi- 
ous patrimony was left to be equally divided amon^^ three 
children, and the share which fell to the lot of the justly 
popular person of that name, who spent the best part of his 
life at Borne, Paris, and Florence, amounted to 150,000/. 
sterling a-year. He collected every where whatever he 
found useful for the improvement of his estate. . 

When Peter learned how valuable a subject he had re- 
warded in old Demidoff, he wished to see him placed in 
the class of nobles. After some hesitation, the old man 
consented to receive his Sovereign's farther bounty,^ and 
being asked what his arms should be, he answered, ^^ a 
miner's hammer, that my posterity may never forget the 
source of their wealth and prosperity.'' It is said, that 
<xie of the three brothers left, at his death, the whole of 
bis property to the Foundling Hospital, at Moscow. 

Nothing can equal the splendour in which Monsieur 
Demidoff lived; nor has there existed, for many years 
past in Europe, a more magnificent patron of the fine arts. 
Of the numerous suite which accompanies him every 
where, and in which there are painters, sculptors, musi- 
cians, and poets, the most remarkable feature is, a r^u- 
lar company of French comedians, with all their trappings 
and apparatus for establishing a theatre wherever their 
liberal master may choose to reside.* 

The establidiment of which I have given an account, 
as well as the whole Mining Department, is in the province 
of the Minister of Finance, and the students are known 
under the general appellation of Cadets of the Mining 
Carps* The importance of educating a number of young 

* IL Demidoff died last winter at Florence^ where the hospitality 
nd benevolenee which he exercised will long be remembered^ as well 
by the inhabitants as by the foreigners who have visited that capital. 


gentlemen in the art of exploring and working the mineral 
wealth of a country like Russia, is too self-evident to de- 
mand any particular observation. The system works well 
in practice, and is productive of much good, as may be 
seen from an abstract account of aU the Mines and foun- 
deries, that exist in Russia and Siberia at present in a 
working state, and of the quantity of metal they yield an- 
nually. It is as follows. 

Gold Mines. — The Crown has establishments for sepa- 
rating gold sand in four mining districts. In 18S4 they 
yielded about ninety-four pouds, 16 lb. 8S^ zolotnicks of 
gold. Eleven private families possess each similar esta- 
blishments, which produce an average of 15^ pouds, 201b. 
94-^ zolotnicks, on which the Crovemment receives a duty 
of twenty pouds, 351b. 85 —- zolotnicks in gold, and one 
poud, 801b. SS-^ zolotnicks in silver. 

Silver Mines. — These are twelve in number in the dis- 
tricts of Eolyvanovoskressensk and Stertchinsk, and all of 
them belong to the Crown. They yield annually more 
than 1,S00 pouds of silver, besides 38,000 pouds of lead. 

Copper Mines.^'The Crown has six of these in the 
Oural Chain, and one in the Altai', from which conjointly 
52,000 pouds of copper are produced. In the several Go- 
vernments there are twenty-seven copper mines worked by 
and belonging to private individuals, which give from 
127 to 159)000 pouds of that metal, on which the Crown 
receives a duty of from 16,311 to 20,801 pouds of it. 

Iron Mines. — There are throughout the whole extent 
of Russia, as well as in the Oural Chain, nineteen founde- 
ries, forges, and mines, belonging to the Crown, yielding 
annually 1,301,000 pouds of mineral, which, independently 
of a vast number of pieces of artillery manufactured out of 
it, produce 500,000 pouds of pure iron, 12,000 pouds in 
anchors, 9)000 pouds in steel and crucibles for smelting 


nlver oT^y and 32,000 small arms. Th& establishments 
belonging to private families are 148 in number, yielding 
annually from 79453,999 to 8,622,396 pouds of mineral, 
out of which are made from 5,142,921 to 6,120,997 pouds 
of iron, from 28,379 to 70,244 pouds of steel, and 234,873 
' scythes. The duty which the Crown receives upon this 
produce amounts to from 802,220 R. 96^ E. to 1,268,365 R. 

96^ ^' ^^ ^^ mineral. 

The revenue of the Crown arising from all the mines in 
the aggregate, is estimated at about fifty millions of roubles 
annually. The first Gold Mine in Russia was discovered 
in 17d9» in the reign of the Empress Anne. The number 
of people employed in the public and private mines in Rus- 
sia amounts to 154,000. It may not be improper to state 
in this place, in respect to mines of a very different descrip- 
tion, that the yearly produce of that most necessary article 
of life, salt, from salt wells and lakes, amounts in Russia 
to thirty millions of pouds, and its consumption to twenty 
millions of pouds ; yet, notwithstanding this excess, many 
of the Governments, particularly those near the Baltic, 
are compelled to procure their salt from abroad, for want 
of water-communication. 

By an order of the present Emperor, the direction of 
the Mines in the Oural, has been confided since January 
1827, to a Superintendent-general, to be named by his 
Majesty, and to reside either at Perm or at Ekathe- 
rineburg; and to correspond with the Minister of Fi- 
nance. To this department is attached a scientific com- 
mittee^ consisting of forty-eight members, seven assistants, 
and twenty-nine corresponding members, who, besides hav- 
ii^ the direction of the ^^ Journal des Mines,^ suggest and 
undertake researches and experiments likely to be of service 
to practical as well as scientific mineralogy. This society 
lately received a donation of 30,000 roubles from his pre- 



sent Majesty in aid of its funds. They, not long ago, sent 
several pounds of platina to foreign societies and chymists, 
and in particular to our Royal Society and Dr. Wollaston, 
to enable them to make an accurate examination of that 
metal as it is found in Russia ; having remarked that such a 
chemical investigation had not been effected abroad, in con- 
sequence of the small quantities of that species of platina 
which had been placed at the disposal of foreign scientific 
men. The produce of the sale of the Journal des Mines 
published by them, amounted in 1826 to 20,640 R. 

There is a society at St. Petersburgh called La Societi 
libre Economique^ which has existed since the year 1765, 
and was founded by Count Roman Woronzow, Prince 
Gregory Orloff, Count J. Tchemicheff, and other noble- 
men and gentlemen, with the special sanction of the Em- 
press Catherine, was confirmed and enlarged a few years 
ago by Alexander, and has been mainly instrumental in 
promoting scientific and useful knowledge. The Em- 
press, at whose suggestion the society was originally 
formed, commenced by allotting a sum for the purchase 
of a house, and the late Sovereign granted an annual 
income to the society of 5000 R., with part of the Is- 
land of Petrowsky, for the purpose of instituting expe- 
riments. Since then, and with the assistance of nume- 
rous private subscriptions, the society have erected a very 
handsome edifice on the Great Admiralty-square, at the 
angle of the Nevskoi* Prospekt, in which they have formed 
a very valuable library, a collection of models of every 
description, specimens of useful minerals, and of rare v^e- 
tables ; with a complete and important collection of seeds. 
Since the foundation of this institution, it has published a 
journal and a volume of transactions at regular periods. It 
has also caused a great number of useful didactic works to 
be composed, or translated from foreign languages, on sub- 


jects connected with agriculture and manufacturing indus* 
try, and distributed gold and other medals, together with 
large sums of money, as an encouragement or reward. The 
society is organized much in the same way, nay, indeed, may 
be said to be a copy of that highly useful and ancient in- 
stitution at home, the Society for the Encouragement of 
Arts and Sciences in the Adelphi. The Gallery, however, 
is greatly superior both for the number of models, and the 
beauty of the apartments, to that of the London Society. 

The example set by the Government, and by the already 
existing societies, in the promotion of useful knowledge, 
has led more than one distinguished individual to devote 
part of bis income in forming institutions for similar, 
or at least analogous objects. Among these, it is impos- 
sible to pass over in silence the school founded in St. 
Petersburgh by Countess Sophia Strogonoff, for instructing 
the humbler classes in rural economy, agriculture, and the 
useful arts, which promises the best results, and is likely 
to be of service to the State. 

Amidst all the galleries, collections, and cabinets, to be 
found in this modern capital of Russia, the stranger may 
look in vain for a Museum, by which he might form a prac- 
tical notion of the antiquities and riches of every kind, with 
whidi the Empire is said to abound, as well as of the 
progress made by the Russians in the fine arts, an account 
of which we occasionally find in the Russian journals. This 
desideratum has since been supplied by Mons. Paul de 
Svinnine, Counsellor of State, who, for the last ten years, 
travelled in different regions of Russia, collecting different 
objects of art, antiquities, manuscripts, &c., with which he 
has formed a museum, that may be considered as unique 
cf its kind, inasmuch as many of the objects it contains 
are not to be met with in any other gallery or collection. 
The Svinnine Museum may be divided into nine sections. 

M 2 


The first contains pictures wholly by Russian artists. The 
second, marbles, bronzes, jasper, malachites, and other 
sculptured objects. The third, Russian drawings. The 
fourth, miniatures by native artists. The Hbrary forms 
the fifth section, and then follow the next four sections of 
antique plate, medals, specimens of Russian mineralc^y, 
national arms, and ancient armour. 

In the first section there are upwards of one hundred 
paintings, many of which are creditable to the infant Rus- 
sian School of Painting, and one cannot but augur fa- 
vourably from these specimens what Russian artists will 
effect hereafter. Doubtlessly, the proverb '* none is a pro^ 
phet at home,^ holds good as much in Rusaa as in other 
countries. The ancients have so absorbed our admiration 
and cash, that we have little of the one, and scarcely any 
of the other left to bestow on modern productions of the 
pencil. This is very much the case in Russia; although 
individuals are not wanting in that country, who would 
prefer to exert their influence and patronage in foster- 
ing and encouraging native talent, rather than in merely 
collecting the performances of ancient masters, often inferior 
in value, not unfrequently copies, and now and then quite 
useless as to any advantage which art can derive from sudi 
a collection of paintings. Among the pictures which Mr. 
Svinnine has brought together, there are three by Losaenko^ 
whom some people choose to consider as the father, al- 
though he is only the oldest painter of the Russian school. 
This artist's works are very rare. They show the first step 
taken by the Russians in this delightful art. Those which 
follow in the scale of seniority, as well as merit, besides many 
others, are from Agrumoff, Warnick, Levitsky, Volkc^, and 
Kiprensky, considered as the first painter in Russia, whose 
picture of Jupiter at the house of Philemon and Baucis is 
much esteemed. Venetsianoff, and his pupils Kryloff, Ti- 


ron<^, and Alexeieff, from whose pencil there is a very spi- 
rited representation of his master's studio, which was much 
admired at the last exhibition, are also found in the coU 
lection. In landscape-painters, the Museum is rich. There 
are several pictures by Matveieff, who was educated at 
RcHue, where his compositions attracted great notice; and 
some by Martinoff, Orlovsky, Courlandsoff, Schoukine, 
with four or five others. 

In the section of statuary, M. Svinnine is said to possess 
the best work of Kozlovsky. It is the statue of a genius 
drawing an arrow from his quiver with one hand, while 
with the other he makes the sign for imposing silence. 
Kozlovsky is the same artist who gained the prize pro- 
posed to the sculptors of Europe in general, for a monu- 
ment to be erected to the memory of the late Mr. Pitt ; 
and it is probable that he would have set off for London 
to execute his design, had not death put an end to the most 
brilliant promises of genuine talent. There is also, among 
other statues, one by Sokoloff, — a child shedding tears 
at the escape of his bird from the cage» which is perfectly 
beautiful Among the bronzes, a Venus, by Khvostchen- 
koff, copied after an antique statue discovered in. the Cri- 
mea, is deserving of commendation. 

It is needless to enumerate the many articles of mala- 
chite, jasper vases by some of the best sculptors, por« 
celain, and other objects of curiosity, among which, I 
must not omit to mention a specimen of mosaic,, by that 
extraordinary genius Lomonossoff, who was alike a good 
artist and an excellent poet. It was he who first intro- 
duced into Russia the art of mosaic composition. 

There are among the albums, 300 views taken in the 
course of M. Svinnine's travels, with plans of the principal 
towns in Russia, and some of its most picturesque land- 
; with the addition of several coloured drawings of 


the numerous costumes peculiar to the many-tongued 
nations of which the Empire is composed. 

The library is small, and consists of whatever the Russian 
press has produced that is excellent, both in regard to the 
works themselves, and the manner in which they are printed. 
There is a series of ** Voyages Pittoresques^ in Russia, 
among which the most esteemed is a copy of Count Rech- 
berg^s ^* Les Peuples de la Russie,^ each drawing of whick 
is coloured by Carne'iefF. 

To a Russian, the department of MSS. is perhaps the 
most interesting, as they all relate to the history of his coun- 
try. The most ancient among them refer to the four- 
teenth and fifteenth centuries, and among the modem ones, 
those are most remarkable which contain narratives of tra- 
vellers who have visited the countries of the Asiatic nations 
on the confines of Russia. There are also in the general 
collection, several autographs of Peter, Catherine, Souvo- 
roif, LomonossofF, and Ehrapovitsky. 

The ancient plate consists of several curious specimens 
of the Russian art in orfevrerie. They are interesting as 
being associated with recollections of more or less impor- 
tance, rather than as examples of taste in that art. Great 
richness and bizarrerie are its most striking features. 

Among the medals there is an unique collection of all 
those of Russia which serve to commemorate particular 
events, accompanied by a series of all the honorary medals 
and crosses that have been bestowed by the Sovereigns of 
Russia on military and civil individuals, as well as persons 
who have distinguished themselves or deserved well of 
their country. 

The mineralogical cabinet, which is arranged according 
to the Wernerian system, and which includes among other 
rarities a most valuable specimen of radiated red shorl 
of great beauty, together with the section containing the 


armoury, are not the least remarkable features of the col* 

A very recent French writer, who has supplied me with 
materials for the preceding description, in alluding to this 
collection, observes that, ^^ on ne peut s^emp^cher de remar- 
quer le gout et Tordre qui regnent dans la distribution de 
toutes ces richesses, et on ne doit gu&re om^ttre de faire 
^nention de Taffabilite avec laquelle les Strangers sont ac- 
cueillis par leur proprietaire, qui rappelle cette antique et 
franche hospitality, Thonneur de la nation Russe.^* 

Dining one day at Doctor Rehman^s, the Superintendent- 
general of the Civil Medical Department in Russia, a 
gentleman whose protracted ill health both science and his 
patients have reason to lament, I had the pleasure of form- 
ing the acquaintance of Professor Fischer the botanist, who 
had been so well received, and found so many friends when 
in England two years before. The season was by no means 
tempting for a botanical excursion ; but at that gentleman's 
invitation, I promised to visit the new and extensive botan- 
ical garden which has lately been formed under his imme- 
diate direction, in the vicinity of St. Petersburgh, and is 
now completing after his own plans and designs. 

Having prevailed on a young English physician to ac- 
company me, we committed ourselves to the good faith and 
quick perception of a sledge-driver, with whom, of course, 
we oould not exchange a single word, beyond the first 
phrase of command at starting, which I had learned much 
in the fashion of the green bird ; ^^ poch61 v' botanitches- 
koy Sad ;^ which place we knew, from the carte dupays^ lay 
a great way north of the city, on one of the extremities of the 
Apothecaries Island, and on the border of the great Nevka. 
Had we then read the sad and terrific account given by a 

* See Journal de St. Petersbourgh, 1828, No. 26. 


very recent English traveller, to ivhom I have once before 
alluded, as one who had visited the Holy Land, of the 
" atrocious villany of the Droshky, or sledge-drivers, who," 
)ie says, '^ have been known to murder those who engage 
them, if they remain till a late hour on the ice,*** we 
should not have ventured on our intricate and perilous ex- 
pedition. Intricate it indeed proved, for the fellow had never 
been to the place before, or even to that part of the city/ 
I verily believe ; but, Russian-like, he did not wish to give 
up the chance of finding it, and we could neither help him, 
nor ourselves, being tongue-tied. Away we glided, at the 
rate of the wind, with plenty of it full in our face, plough- 
ing at times through three feet of snow, crossing the frozen 
bosoms of rivers and canals, and scarcely venturing to ex- 
press our regret to each other, lest our very words should 
be frozen too, the temperature of the atmosphere being, at 
the time, ll"" below the of Reaumur. We arrived, at last, 
thanks to the good-nature of a soldier, whom I took my 
chance of addressing in French, and to whom I told the sad 

* It is surprising how a highly respectable individual^ of a religi- 
ous turn, as the traveller alluded to unquestionably is, can so lightly 
advance such general and sweeping assertions as those contained in 
the passage here quoted. He states, as a proof, that one of " those 
wretches" was discovered, who confessed the murder he had com- 
mitted, and was convicted. Supposing the fact to be as stated, (al- 
though considerable doubts may be entertained of its authenticity, 
from the loose manner in which it is related, without dates or par- 
ticulars,) does it follow that the drivers of sledges, or droshkys, in St. 
Petersburgh, in general, should be stigmatized as hardened murder- 
ers ? Were not the assertion altogether too ridiculous, one might well 
exclaim, " proh pudor !'' What, if a Russian who had read an account 
of a hackney-coachman being convicted, as was actually the case two 
years ago, of having committed and consummated a violent assault 
on a female whom he was conveying in his coach to a short distance 
from London, were to assert that all the hackney-coach drivers in 
London are in the habit of committing the same atrocious o£Fence ? 


tale of our distress, and whither we meant to proceed. With 
great nimbleness, he placed his two feet on the projecting 
board behind our vehicle, gave peremptory directions to 
the isvostchick, and after many more ^* round and about^" 
(for we had, it appears, gone two miles beyond our goal,) we 
reached the noble front of the buildings belonging to the 

We were received with much cordiality by Professor 
Fischer, who proceeded in the first place to show and 
explain to us the plan of the whole establishment, and 
afterwards conducted us to the different serres^ the rest 
of the garden being covered with snow at the time of our 

The Imperial Botanic Garden of St. Petersburgh is an 
institution of very recent date. In its present state it has 
existed only since 18^, the first stone of the building 
having been laid with great pomp in the month of June 
of that year. The area occupied by the garden is of a 
somewhat triangular form, and sixty-five acres in extent. 
Besides the dwelling-houses of the Professor and head- 
gardeners, it contains the following arrangements and di- 
visions, some of which^ however, are as yet only sketched 
out, and not completed. 

A parallelogram, formed by three parallel lines of hot 
and green- houses, united at each end by covered corridors, 
constitutes the principal feature of the garden. Of these 
lines, that which is to the South contains green-house 
plants in its centre, and hot-house plants at each end. The 
middle line is for hot-house plants alone, and the North 
line has no other than green-house plants. The North 
and South line contain, respectively, five different comparts 
ments of one hundred toises each. The middle line has 
seven compartments. The connecting corridors, at each 
endy are thirty-five sajenes in length, (£46 feet.) The two 


plots of open ground between the lines, are used, the one 
for plants requiring hot-beds, the other for exposing the 
plants in the summer. The whole range of hot and green- 
houses, taken in a continued line, measures 518 sajenes, or 
d,624 feet, being little short of three-fourths of an English 
mile in length. This, Professor Fischer informed me, is 
the largest extent of green and hot-house buildings covered 
with glass to be found in any botanical garden in Europe. 
The latter are warmed by means of heated air passing 
through flues. 

To the North of this plot of ground, is a nursery of every 
tree and shrub growing in the open air. To the South, 
there is a systematical arrangement of all the plants that 
live in the open air, especially intended for the study of 
botany : the classification adopted is the natural one ; and 
to this part of the garden a collection of plants will be 
added, to form a Flora Rossica. 

The Arboretum for trees and shrubs that can endure 
the climate of St. Petersburgh, or that bear fruit, exists in 
another part of the garden. 

The study of medical botany is facilitated by the culti- 
vation, in a particular division of the ground, of every 
vegetable article of the Materia Medica adopted in Rusma; 
and so is that of culinary and other economical plants. 

No fewer than three subdivisions of the ground have 
been devoted to the growth of medicinal plants, or 
simples, on a scale sufficient to supply the hospitals. 
Professor Fischer assured us that, with regard to one 
article alone, the extract of Aconitum Napellum, this 
part of the garden had been the means of saving much 
expense to the crown ; for he was called upon and enabled 
to famish the Medical Department of Hospitals in the 
course of last year to the amount of 160 pouds, or 4560 
pounds of the fresh leaves of that plant. 


£xperimental gardening also has not been forgotten 
in the general arrangement ; for which specific purpose 
a plot of ground has been set apart ; and in a farther divi- 
sion of the garden a plantation has been formed , accessible 
to the student of botany, for examining every plant oculis 
et tnanibut. 

The inundation which took place in November 1824, 
extended to This estabUshment, then in its most incipient 
state, and caused considerable damage. The water rose, 
as marked by the ominous red line in one of the outer 
rooms leading to the hot^houses, to a height of four feet 
four inches ; and M. Fischer had to regret, among other 
losses on that occasion, that of about 150 species of heath. 

One of the great advantages belonging to so great an 
extent of glass buildings for plants as the Botanic Garden 
c^ St. Petersburgh possesses, is that of admitting a double 
classification of plants, namely a geographical one, and 
another according to families; the Professor has fully 
availed himself of this facility. 

As the Imperial Botanic Garden of the capital is in- 
tended to become the centre of propagation of vegetables 
to be distributed to the Imperial gardens all over the 
Empire, as well as to private individuals gratuitously, there 
is a large compartment formed in the north-line of the 
great hot-houses in which the; young plants are kept and 
cultivated together, with a seed department, for that twofold 

The distributing of seeds, cuttings, and plants of all 
sorts, is one of the surest modes of preserving and even 
improving their propagation in the country : an opposite 
policy, such as is followed in some of the public gardens 
in this country, defeats its own purpose. In this respect, 
private individuals in England are far more spirited, and 
liberal than those at the head of public establishments for 


the culture of plants. On inquiring of Professor Fischer by 
what means lie had suoceededj in so short a space of time 
as four years, in forming so splendid and rich a collection, 
as I saw displayed before me in the long line of shelters 
and shades, of every known vegetable production of the 
globe ; his answer was, ** A portion of them was purchased 
by Government at my suggestion ; but for the most im* 
portant part by far, I stand indebted to several English 
botanists and friends, whose liberality has been such, 
that I brought away in presents of plants and seeds 
from England, I dare say, to the amount of four thousand 

Right well has the Professor used the gifts in ques- 
tion, cherished and nursed them, to judge by the mag- 
nificent foliage and brilliant blooms that graced, in the 
very heart of winter, these receptacles of every rare exo- 
tic, where vegetation seemed to have outstripped in its 
progress even the most sanguine expectations. Passing 
through the Australasian groups of families, an Acacia 
speciosa, which had grown eighteen feet in the space of 
two years, and an Eucalyptus^ twenty-five feet in the same 
period, were pointed out to us by Mr. Fischer. Nothing 
could equal, the soft, beautiful, sea-green tint of the former, 
so peculiar to New Holland plants. But what appeared 
still more surprising, was the vegetation of a fine specimen 
of the Loboui candens maxima^ in the green-house of 
creepers, the vertical height of which alone was thirtytwo 
feet, but which covered besides, with its main stem and 
feelers, a space of several hundred feet ! This climber had 
been struck from a cutting under a hand-glass only two 
years before. Next to it, a beautiful specimen of the 
Smilax excelsa claimed my particular attention, as the plant 
is used by the Persian physicians for the same indication 
for which sarsaparella is prescribed in Europe. Twenty- 


m families of Australasian plants in a green-house, thirty- 
two feet high, and thirty*six families of those from New 
Holland in the same compartment, give one a tolerably 
good idea of the magnificent vegetation of that fifth part 
of our globe. The Cape plants to the number of forty-five 
fandlies, the American plants of temperate climate, an ex- 
tensive collection of Rhododendra^ and another of resinous 
plants fill the fifth division of the North line. The corridor 
of communication between this and the South line contains, 
among other very handsome plants, a separate collection of 
lilies, of which class those belonging to the Cape are kept 
distinct from the rest, and appeared quite exquisite. 

In the south line of the Serres^ the plants of the South of 
Europe, the succulent plants, and a Chinese, Japanese, and 
Nepaulese-house, display in one of its divisions their splen- 
did flowers. No fewer than forty-eight numerous families 
of these are contained in this division ; of which number I 
noticed some most exquisite Chrysanthemums in full bloom. 
Next follow the Flora Canariensa, consisting of thirty-four 
families, after which comes a continuation of the succulent 
plants. In the division next to these, those delightful and 
lovely plants composing the family of the Orchidea^ ex- 
hibited several rare specimens, one of which, an Epiden- 
drum nutans f was then in flower. 

From the South to the middle line, a green-house com- 
munication to the East is devoted to the cultivation of 
hardy perennials and reserves. 

The middle line presents one of the most interesting 
didtered promenades to be met with in any botanic garden. 
The palms and the Fems^ and an arrangement of Cacti on 
rocks, are included in this division. Here also are the 
AgaveSf among which is one of the two agaves originally 
planted by Miller at the Chelsea garden, and presented to 
Mr. Fischer ; the arborescent lilies ; the columnar and gi- 


gantic Cacti ; together with some of the finest specimens of 
the most celebrated monocotyledon woody plants, among 
which a musa plantan, thirty feet high, and a Coladium 
Sagittiforme appeared most conspicuous. The cinnamon- 
tree also is in great vigour here, and has more than once 
flowered, as did also a magnificent specimen of the' Ja- 
panese sago-tree, Cycas Circenalis. Beyond them, an Arum 
appendiculatum was particularly noticed, which has flow- 
ered since 18S4, and whose greenish corollas have, as the 
Professor informed us, the same propensity which its leaves 
possess, of multiplying themselves under favourable circum- 
stances. A shoot of bamboo, rising to nearly the fullest 
height of this hot-house, attracted our attention from its 
beauty. During the great heat of 18S6, this plant had 
grown twenty-six feet in the space of eighteen days. Un» 
wieldy, grotesque, and uninviting as the general forms 
and outlines of the family of Cacti are, the bloom of many 
of them are nevertheless worthy of being ranked among 
some of the most brilliant specimens of the tropical Flora. 
This is the case in particular with the Epiphyllum trun- 
catumy a most exquisite specimen of which species we 
noticed here in flower, bearing a strong resemblance to the 
corolla of the Diadelphia, tinted with a fine delicate white 
and rose colour. 

Professor Fischer speaks the English language with great 
fluency : he is one of the most enthusiastic as well as able 
botanists in Europe, and was at one time director of tbe 
Botanic Garden of Count Rozoumovski at Gorenki near 
Moscow, one of the most extensive private botanic gardens 
in the world, as I have been informed by competent judges. 
We took our leave of him with unfeigned regard, and 
thankful for the patient and earnest manner with which 
he explained, and, as we proceeded, commented upon, the 
difierent parts of this vast and important establishment. 


which promises to become, in a very few years, ope of the 
most interesting in the Empire. 

Haying with reluctance bid adieu to the tropical cli- 
mates and their leafy inhabitants, amounting to 11,000 
species, and 80,000 single plants, among which we had 
spent some hours with unfeigned delight, we once more' 
committed ourselves to our sledge*driver, and retraced our 
steps to the mansion of Count Woronzow, through a 
freezing atmosphere and thick beds of snow. 





Churches And Religious Institutions. — Toleration. — Seren Temples 
of different Communions in one Street. — Divisions of the Clergy.— 
Contemplated Improvements. — Preaching encouraged as a means 
of Civilization. — The Holy Synod. — Number of Churches and 
Ecclesiastics. — The Metropplitan Church of our Lady of Cazav. 
— Military Trophies. — Tomb of Kutusoff, and the baton of Mar- 
shal Davoust. — Alexander. — The Imperial Jewels. — Platoff and 
the Cossacks' gift. — Monastery of St. Alexander Nevskoi. — The 
Cathedral of the Holy Trinity. — Shrine of the Saint in solid Silver. 
— The Jewels. — The Cloisters. — The Church of the Annundation. 
-—Monuments of Souvoroff and Miloradovitch. — Tomb of the 
Naryschkine family, and of the Sheremetieffs. — Russian Pan- 
theon. — The Cemetery. — Prevailing good taste of the Monu- 
ments. — The Countess Potemkin. — Monumental Column to 
Lomonossoff. — Proposed new Monument to that poet — - Grand 
new Church of St, Isaac. — Its Plan and Elevation. — The Co- 
lossal granite Columns.— Church of St. Peter and St. Paul. — 
Tombs of the Sovereigns. — The Catholic Church. — Moreau's 
Tomb. — The Lutheran Churches. — The English Church.— 
Greco-Russian Church Service. — Religious Ceremonies of the Rus- 
sians. — Imperial Christenings and TV Deums. — Rituals for the cele- 
bration of Matrimony. — Invitation to a Wedding. — Church Ce- 
remony. — Beautiful Prayers. — Domestic Scenes. — Russian 

What can they mean by " Liberie des Cultes ?" ob- 
served the expatriated Mr. C in one of his letters from 

France, written at the time of the promulgation of the first 



constitution, in the early days of the Revolution. ^' Why, 
to my knowledge, the fellows have had no culte at all, for 
the last quarter of a century," was the next observation. 
This liberie des cultes is not the kind of toleration which 
prevails in Rus^a in matters of religion. There a domi- 
nant religion exists, which is called, par excellence, the Or- 
thodox Greco-Russian religion ; but it domineers not to the 
exclusion of every other mode of worship, by constituting 
those who profess different communions incapable of hold- 
ing places of trust, or of enjoying the same rights and pri- 
vil^es, in every respect, that belong to a Greco-Russian. 
How could it be otherwise in an empire, the population of 
which, amounting, according to the census taken ten years 
ago, to fifty-three millions of inhabitants, is divided, in 
point of religious creeds, in the following manner : 

1 Orthodox Greco-Russians 
£ Roman Catholics 
S Uniati, or United 

4 Armenians 

5 Protestants 

6 Mahometans 

r Evangelicals'^ 
< Lutherans > 
V:Calvinists J 






I Brahmins 

7 Pagans or Idolaters -^ *™ 



^ of the Sun , 

besides nearly a million and a half of wandering tribes 

, whose religion is unknown. (See Weydemeyer^s Statistical 

Tables, 1828.; 



Every stranger who has seen any thing of tlie Russian 
people, even though his stay among them may have been a 
short one, and that, only in the capital, must acknowledge 
that with all the outward show of' an earnest attachment 
to the spirit as well as ceremonies of their creed, those who 
profess the dominant religion are, without exception, per- 
fectly free from every persecuting feeling against other 
religious persuasions. This spirit of real toleration extends 
to all classes, and has been the uniform guide of the Gro- 
vernment ever since the foundation of the empire. A 
proof of this is found in the unparalleled example presented 
to our attention by the Capital, or Imperial residence, the 
finest and principal street of which contains not fewer than 
seven temples, dedicated to as many different forms of 
religious worship. In the Nevskoi Frospekt, we observed 
the Russian cathedral nearly opposite to the Great Catholic 
church ; the latter not far from the Armenian ; the Lu- 
theran distant but a few paces from either ; with two other 
churches for dissenters from them all, and lastly a mosque 
for the Mahometans f So that, while on great festivals and 
public thanksgivings, the Imperial Court is seen to proceed 
in state to the magnificent temple of our Lady of E[azan, with 
myriads of Greco-Russians ; others of their subjects are ob- 
served directing their steps to their different places of wor- 
ship, at the same time and upon the same brief spot of ground, 
equally bent on addressing the Deity according to their 
peculiar rites and religious ceremonies, and in their respec- 
tive languages, without restriction or the fear of persecution. 

In the general distribution of the hierarchy of its Church, 
the Greco-Russian religion differs but little from the Roman 
Catholic with the exception of their supreme head. The 
one, like the other, has a monastic and a secular clergy ; 
but the attributes and privileges of these divisions, 
differ in many respects in the one from those existing in 


the other. On the principles or tenets of the dominant 
religion, it is not for me to make a single remark. That 
task has already been accomplished so fully and* so ably, as 
well as correctly, according to the observations of competent 
judges, by the late Dr. King, who had been many years chap- 
lain to the British factory at St. Petersburgh, that it would 
be presumptuous in any one to attempt to do better. What 
I have to offer on this subject, has reference only to the 
manner in which the Church establishment is formed under 
the sanction of the Government, of which it may be said to 
form a part. For, ever since Peter suppressed the patri- 
archal authority, and declared himself and his successors 
heads of the Church ; and still more so, since Catherine 
united the Church property to that of the Crown, sub- 
stituting other means of support for the clergy ; the latter 
may be said to have become a department of the Imperial 

Among the monastic clergy in Russia we find the fol- 
lowing gradations or dignities, beginning from the lowest, 
namely that of Monk or Friar, Hiero-monachs, (deacons 
and priors,) Hegoumenos, (Abbot,) Archimandrite, Bishop, 
Ardibishop, Metropolitan. Of the various high dignities 
forming the Church establishment there are three classes 
exclusive of the Patriarch. In the first, the Metropoli- 
tans, to the number of four, are included ; in the second, 
the Archbishops, of which there are thirteen ; and in the 
third, the Bishops, amounting to twenty in number. The 
Empire being divided into thirty-seven dioceses, each of 
the members of the three classes has one of the dioceses 
necessarily under his care. 

The secular clergy consists of such persons as, having 
been ordained by the Bishops as Deacons, after having 
been clerical students for a certain time, afterwards 
become priests, and, as such, have a distinct parish 

N 2 


assigned to them, in the church of which they are to 
officiate either as simple priests, with seyeral others, if 
the church be large, or as proto-presbyters, the highest 
dignity in the establishment to which a secular priest can 
aspire. In order to officiate, the secular priests must be 
married, and they cannot be ordained by the Bishop 
if they are single. On the other hand, they are forbid- 
den to marry a second wife, when once ordained, if they 
become widowers ; and should thdr wives die immediately 
before they are ordained, that <;eremony cannot take place, 
and an individual so circumstanced must resign all inten- 
tion of forming part of the secular clergy. He may either 
enter the monastic order, or will be obliged to follow 
another career. But although a secular priest cannot be 
ordained unless married, he may, when once ordained, 
still officiate as priest, although he should happen to lose 
his wife. The monastic clergy cannot marry ; neither can 
they absolve themselves from their vows under any cir* 
cumstance or pretence whatever. Plurality of livings 
never occurs in the Greek church ; neither is the systeip 
of paying the clergy by tithes known among them. The 
practice, too, of having curates is very limited. Bishops 
only can have curates, and among the secular clergy one 
priest may act for another in case of absence or illness, 
or any other valid excuse, but not otherwise. The mo- 
nastic clergy, in general, officiate in churches belonging 
to monasteries; although on many occasions, and parti- 
cularly on grand festivals, they also take part in the 
service at other churches; but the latter are more com- 
monly attended by the secular clergy, or priests. 

In regard to the monastic clergy, it appears that from 
the moment of entering the order, and consequently a 
monastery, to the time of arriving at a certain digrnity 
in that order, the Greco-Russian and the Catholic religion 


do not differ in discipline : the same trials, probationary 
exercises, noviciate, and servitude, are observed ; and the 
same line of preferment is open to all in both communions, 
from the lay-friar to the archimandrite in the Russian, 
or to the General of the Order in the Roman Catholic 

The ordinary costume of the monastic differs from 
that of the secular clergy ; but both must wear beards, 
unless residing out of the Empire, and then they are 
allowed a dispensation. The monks wear a Klobouk on 
their head, or a high cylindrical cap with a flowing veil. 
The priests have more commonly a broad-brimmed hat. 
The secular clergy may wear cloth or silk of any colour, 
but the garment must be loose. The monastic clergy are 
forbidden to adopt any other colour than black, whether 
it be silk or cloth that they prefer for their ordinary 
dress. The hair of both is long, and floating upon their 

Id point of education, there can be no doubt that the 
monastic is far above the secular clergy. To those who 
prepare for the Church, instruction is given in parish and 
district schools, seminaries, and academies, which are placed 
under the immediate superintendence of the superior dig- 
nitaries of the Church,« formed into a special commission 
which resides at St. Petersburgh. Among the monas- 
tic clergy there have been at all times, and there are at 
this moment, persons of very great learning and exemplary 
piety. I have had the pleasure of being introduced to 
one or two dignitaries of the Greco-Russian church at St. 
Petersburgh, whose education and deep erudition, free from 
^Igar prejudice or grosd superstition, would entitle them 
to rank among the clergy of the most civilized nations in 
Europe. Although it is true that, in general, the secular 
clergy are not equally instructed, and until very lately 


were deemed very deficient in education, there are strik- . 
ing exceptions amongst them, which, without going far- 
ther, may be illustrated by an allusion to a gentleman very 
well known in this country, the Chaplain to the Russian 
Embassy. There appears, at present, a strong inclination, 
on the part of the Imperial Government, to bring about 
a salutary reform on this point ; by making the secular 
clergy better qualified to fulfil their sacred functions with 
the help of a more regular education, to extend their use- 
fulness in checking the progress of sectarianism which has 
of late years increased to one-tenth of the whole, and in im- 
proving the moral as well as the religious principles of the 
people, who will then be under the care of pastors in every 
way worthy of their respect. The Emperor, by an ukase, 
dated the 11th January last, has commanded the Holy 
Synod to prepare and submit for his approbation a plan 
for securing a better education to the children of the 
clergy, and for providing certain means of subsistence, for 
those persons who devote themselves to the ecclesiastical 
career, particularly if they are resident in poor districts. 

It is in consequence of a similar expression of the Imperial 
pleasure that the Synod has, of late, either issued orders 
or pressing recommendations for reading a sermon every 
Sunday after service, a practice which had insensibly grown 
into disuse. The^, it is trusted, will produce, and indeed 
have in a great measure already produced, much good. It 
has been remarked of late years that the common people pay 
more serious attention in church since preaching has become 
more general, and it is evident that it would be possible to 
take advantage of this favourable disposition on the part of 
the inferior classes, to promote their civilization by fre- 
quently mingling with the exposition of the truths of reli- 
gion a homely explanation of the principles of morality, 
the duties of citizens, and the great advantages of know- 


ledge. The Russian church will then have less cause to 
lament the number of dissenters, or sectarians, who start 
into existence every year, differing, perhaps, only in the 
interpretation of a particular word, the necessity of a 
particular ceremony, or the importance to be attached to 
a particular image ; errors which have of late been fully 
exposed in some very able publications that have appeared 
at St. Petersburgh and Moscow. 

I have bad occasion to mention the Holy Synod more 
than once. This is the public institution founded by Peter 
the Great, for the regulation of ecclesiastical affairs subject 
to die approbation of Government. It is the executive 
establishment, which has authority to deliberate on all cle- 
rical matters, but whose deliberations are watched and whose 
resolutions are controlled by a Procurator-general, forming 
part of the Synod, who is a layman, and appointed by the 
Emperor. A part of this institution is established at Mos- 
cow. One of the duties of the Synod is, to keep the regis- 
ters of births and deaths, from which annual bills of mor- 
tality are published by them, referable however to those 
who profess the dominant religion only. 

The number of churches in St. Petersburgh is con- 
siderable, but by no means so much so as at Moscow, nor 
80 great as in many large towns where the Roman Catholic 
religion is professed. Indeed, I am inclined to think that 
those that are devoted to the ecclesiastical state in Russia, 
are not so numerous as in Roman Catholic countries. Ac« 
cording to some statistical tables published in 18^, it ap- 
pears that out of fifty-three millions of inhabitants, there 
were not more than 216,000 ecclesiastics in the Russian 
Empire, of whom about two-thirds are of the orthodox 
Greek religion. It follows, therefore, that there is one 
ecclesiastic only for every two hundred and twenty*eight 
individuals prcxfessing the same creed. 


Many of the churches in St. Petersburgh, like the Govern* 
ment palaces, and some of the large mansions of noblemen, 
are very striking buildings. Their ByzaBtine architecture 
with a large central dome and four smaller ones, around 
it, in many cases of that elliptic form which may be said 
to be bulbous, and the plain but massive Greek Cross richly 
gilt, surmounting a gilt Crescent^ or in many instances rising 
immediately from the cupola, tend to give to the majority 
of churches at St. Petersburgh a peculiar appearance, 
which is by no means devoid of effect, and never fails to 
engage the attention of the traveller. Attempts, however, 
have been made at all times to mix with this Oriental style 
the severer and more pleasing beauties of Grecian or 
Roman architecture. This is particularly the case in re- 
spect to our Lady of Kazan ; a large and (take it all in 
all) splendid monument of architecture, situated at about 
the middle of the Nevskoi Prospekt, still more remarkable 
as being the work of a native architect, a protege of the 
late Count Strogonoff, named Voronikhin. Cameron, the 
Scotch architect, who has left so many creditable monuments 
behind him at St. Petersburgh, was one of the competitors 
for this great undertaking, and presented designs which I 
was assured by an architect now living in that capital, were 
superior to those of the Russian artist. Be that as it 
may, the recommendation of Count Strogonoff, on whose 
estates it is said the latter was bom a serf, prevailed with 
the Emperor Paul, and the construction of this great temple 
was entrusted to Voronikhin. 

Bather than enter into tedious details of its architecture, 
I have here introduced a plan and elevation of this edifice, 
by the inspection of which my readers will form an accu- 
rate notion of its beauties and defects. It abounds indeed 
in both. The conception is grand ; many points in its 
execution are excellent, as well as the material and work- 


manship of the decorative parts. There is something 
striking in this edifice, viewed as a whole ; but« although 
the architect was daring enough to attempt an imitation of 
the noblest temple in the Christian world in the body of 
the church, in its portico, and circular colonnades — his heart 
failed him at the execution of the dome ; and being neither 
a Bramante nor a Michael Angelo, he permitted the sur- 
mounting cupola, shorn of its fair proportions, height, and 
magnitude, to rest on a dome of miserable dimensions. 
To give strength, beauty, and magnificence to this edifice, 
the fine cupola of St. Paul's ought to stand in lieu of that 
of Voronikhin. The dome is covered with block tin, and 
crowned with a cross of exquisite workmanship, supported 
on a large gilded ball. 

It may be asked, what is the meaning of the semicircular 
polystile on each side of the portico, formed of one hundred 
and thirty-two Corinthian columns, raised on a stylobate 
of three steps, and each advancing from the body of the 
church to within a short distance of the street, where it is 
terminated by portals of corresponding magnitude ? Ber- 
nini^s idea, from which the present is evidently borrowed, 
was happy. The magnificent circular colonnades, which 
form the Piazza di St. Pietro, were also intended as shel- 
tered avenues, between well-distributed rows of pillars, to 
the principal front of and grand entrance into the church. 
Here they are attached and lead to one of the sides of the 
building f True, Voronikhin had no alternative. The 
church must have its altar turned to the east, according to 
the Greek rite ; and in the locality which it was destined to 
occupy, a side only of the building so disposed, and not its 
front, could be presented to the street. He therefore 
adopted the idea, unique of its kind, I believe, of strictly 
embellishing that side like a fafade ; constructing, at the 
same time, the regular fafade in the west, as will be seen 


from the plan. When architects are bound to certain loca- 
lities, their designs should be conceived for them in particu- 
lar : they should not carry upon any ground, for execution, 
a particular plan, devised and put together for effect upon 
paper, in the cabinet, without any reference to the place it 
is to occupy. Again, the manner in which the two circular 
platforms and stylobates in this cathedral have been thick 
set with columns, four in depth, and many of these clus- 
tered together, at the union with the body of the build- 
ing, has produced that species of confused mass, through 
which it is impossible for the eye to penetrate, or perceive 
daylight. Whichever way from the centre, or side of the 
area, or from the street, we turn our looks to these colon- 
nades, the eye, instead of surveying a simple Grecian 
arrangement of pillars, is arrested by a dead wall formed 
of them. The columns are thirty-five feet in height, 
and of stone, different from those that decorate its inte- 
rior, and which support an arched roof richly ornamented 
with flowers in bas-relief. These latter columns are fifty in 
number, and each of one piece of solid granite, forty feet 
high, and four feet in diameter, surmounted by a rich capi- 
tal of bronze, and supported on massive bases of the same 
metal. When first set in their places, it is said that they 
had a polish equal to the finest crystal. These columns 
are by Soukhanoff. The granite of which they are made 
comes from Finland, and has a general reddish-brown 
tint, sparkling with mica and feldspar, and resembling 
Egyptian Sienite ; but the lapse of fifteen years has made 
some havoc on its surface, which appeared to me abraded 
in various places, ancl decomposing; so that in some parts 
there were considerable hollows and indentures. The de- 
corations in the body of the church are not very strik- 
ing; those of the altar are rich and splendid. The jewels 
belonging to the altar, and the silver doors that lead to the 



sanctum sanctorum^ with the railing in front, of the same 
material, are alone a rich treasure. With the exception of 
the seat exclusively appropriated for the sovereigns, and a 
place whence the sermon is preached, there are neither 
chairs, benches, nor other accommodations in the body of 
the church, the congregation standing during the service, 
or kneeling or prostrating themselves on the ground, as in 
Roman Catholic churches, where however both chairs and 
benches are admitted. I was not very favourably impress- 
ed with the various paintings which decorate the walls, 
particularly in the angles and lunettes of the dome ; but 
then the church receives the daylight so imperfectly 
through the windows of that dome, that the place beneath 
it lies generally in solemn obscurity. This part of the 
building is as manifest a failure internally, as it is in its 

Military trophies, banners, and the keys of fortresses, 
wrested from the enemies of Russia, are displayed in va- 
rious parts of the church. Among these there is a Mar- 
shal's baton, said to have been that of Davoust. A much 
more interesting object of attention is the tomb of Kutu- 
soff, in the west angle of the nave, remarkable for its sim- 
plicity, and the warlike trophy over it, formed of French 
flags and the el^les of Napoleon. The great part which this 
celebrated officer took in rescuing his country from hostile 
invasion, has placed his name above the pomp of monu- 
ments. But there is one monument in the Imperial Crown 
of Russia, which, as long as it perpetuates the memory of 
the general, will also indicate to posterity how the Sove- 
reign, whose Empire he had defended, had acknowledged 
his services. In that crown, a small plate of gold, with the 
name of Kutusoff inscribed upon it, was placed, by order 
of Alexander, in the room of the most valuable jewel taken 
from it, and sent to the warrior by his Majesty, with a 


letter, in which he announced to him his elevation to the 
rank of Prince of Smolensko. 

Besides the colossal bronze statues placed under the 
portico, from the chisel of Martos, the Russian Canova, 
two other gigantic statues, by Pimenow and Demutt, were 
to have been placed near the colonnade ; but one only is 
erected, the other, it is said, having been lost at sea. 

The far-famed leader of the Cossacks, to whose valour 
Russia owes, in a great measure, its delivery from an in- 
vading enemy, having, at the head of his troops, intercepted 
a great part of the booty which the French army was 
carrying away from Moscow, sent the. silver plate to the 
Metropolitan of St. Petersburgh, as an offering to the 
Holy Lady of Kazan, which church had been completed 
in the space of ten years, and opened two years before the 
invasion, on the Emperor Alexander's birthday. The 
document with which the gift was accompanied, deserves 
to be recorded in the present account of that cathedral, 
as characteristic of the sentiments which animated that 
intrepid general. 

** Bestow your benediction on this present, offered by 
our warriors to the Giver of Victory. The brave Don 
Cossacks restore to God the treasures plundered from 
the temples. They have intrusted me with the duty of 
transmitting to your Eminence this silver, which vas once 
the ornament of tlie images of the saints, afterwards the 
prey of barbarous robbers, and at length wrested from 
their gripe by the brave Don Cossacks. The leader of 
this corps of Cossacks, Count Matwei Ivanowitsh Platoff, 
and all his brave warriors, wish that this plate, which 
in weight amounts to four pouds, may be made into 
images of the four Evangelists, and adorn the Church 
of the Mother of God of Kazan, in St. Petersburgh. All 


the necessary expenses of casting these holy images, we 
take on our account. Your Eminence will have the good- 
ness to order that able artificers may be employed to fulfil 
the pious desire of our warriors, by casting these images of 
the Holy Evangelists, which they offer in their zeal for the 
temple of God. As soon as you shall inform me what the 
expense will be, I will remit to you the money. It ap- 
pears to me, that they would be appropriately placed 
close to the door of the Sanctuary, and before the great 
communion-table, that they may strike the eye of the 
devout when they enter the temple. On the pedestal of 
each image, must be engraven the following inscription : 
' The zealous offering of the Corps of the Don Cossacks.' 

*' Hasten to erect in the temple of God this monument of 
battle and victory ; and while you erect it, say, with thank- 
fulness to Providence, the enemies of Russia are no more ; 
the vengeance of God has overtaken them on the soil of 
Russia; and the road they have gone has been strewed 
with thdir bones, to the utter confusion of their frantic and 
proud ambition. 

(Signed) Platopp.'' 

There is, at the termination of the same street, a cluster 
of buildings surrounded by a wet ditch, consisting of an 
old and a modem church, a small chapel, and an extensive 
range of cloisters, fantastically painted of a red colour. The 
wbxAe pile is striking ; and on a Sunday, the crowds of 
pedestrians and equipages that gather in and about these 
i^Mcious edifices and courts, form a most interesting sight. 
*<Come," said to me, one Sunday morning at an early 
hour, Monsieur Savenko, the young and clever surgeon 
whom I have already introduced to my readers, ** Come, 
let us start for the Monastery of St. Alexander Nevskoi*. 
No one leaves the capital without visiting the spot on which 


the great Prince Alexander Yaroslavich obtained in 1341 
a victory over the allied forces of Sweden, Denmarky and 
Livonia, and gained the surname of Nevskoi, and became 
afterwards a monk. For his subsequent piety and holy 
life, he has deserved to be ranked among the saints of the 
Russian Church, and it is in honour of his name that Peter 
the Great erected the monastery in question. On, then, 
with your shoob and fur boots ; my sledge is waiting at 
your door ; the air is clear and bracing ; let us be g(»e. 
There are but ten degrees of cold, watch your nose, and 
a few minutes will see us at the end of the four versts 
between this and the Monastery.^ We arrived as stated, 
entered a grand portal, ran up a long avenue, crossed the 
bridge over the Tchernaya, and penetrated between lines 
of carriages and a crowd of people in their holiday clothes 
within the spacious square, formed by the lone cloister 
before-mentioned, and the palace in which the Archbishop 
of Kazan resides on the right, and by the Church of 
the Annunciation, and those of the Holy Trinity and of 
St. John Crysostomus on the left ; besides a seminary for 
the education of young ecclesiastics^ which is a modern 
building of considerable merit placed at the farthest 
angle. In the second of these churches there is a most 
beautiful specimen of modern architecture of the Corin- 
thian order, which forms a singular contrast with all the 
surrounding objects. The style is pure Grecian, and the 
dimensions such as befit a temple of the first class, con- 
sidered by the inhabitants of St. Petersburgh as their 
second cathedral. It was erected about thirty-six years 
ago on the plans of Starofi^, a pupil of the celebrated 
KakorinoiF, the architect of the Imperial Academy of 
Arts. The great entrance is striking ; and the coup^cal 
of the nave, flanked on each side by a row of handsome 
columns, terminating in a rotunda rising into a lofty dome, 



is full of effect. This is not a little heightened by the 
brilliant Aesco-paintings on the ceilings, and the arabesque 
decorations on the panels of the church, the altar-piece of 
white Carrara marble standing under the dome» and some 
valuable paintings by Rubens, Vandyke, and Raphael 
Mengs, placed at a short distance from the altar. The 
holy door in the Ikonastas^ raised on a flight of steps, 
is of a richly gilt bronze, and surmounted by the repre^ 
sentation of a dazzling aureola^ composed of different 
coloured metals, artfully combined to give its darting 
rays the resplendence of reality. In the centre of this the 
initials of that awful name are traced, which none were 
permitted to pronounce in Israel, save the initiated. The 
interior or proM^sts, with the holy table, and its circular co- 
lonnade supporting the canopy over the consecrated element, 
is lighted by a profusion of richly chased silver lustres. 

The principal object of attraction however in this church 
is the chapel in which the relics of the Saint are deposited. 
A sarcophagus of massive silver, bearing on each side, carved 
with moderate skill, thebas-relief representations of the dif- 
ferent engagements of the warrior Saint with the Swedes, 
leceiTed those relics in 1714, from the . Rojedestvenskoy 
Convent, in the city of Vladimir. Peter, who wished to 
signalize his victories abroad by some conspicuous event at 
home, made the translation of the remains of the holy 
Prince, who had in time past defeated that inveterate ene- 
my of Russia, the means of celebrating the peace of New- 
stadt, which he had himself concluded with the Swedes. 
Those relics were transported by land as far as Novgorod, 
where they were shipped on board a highly decorated 
yacht. The Emperor went in his own galley to meet them 
as far as Ijora, accompanied by a numerous suite, received 
them in it, placed himself at the helm, made his superior 
officers row the gaDey, and arrived at the Convent of the 


Annunciation on the left bank of the Neva, near the present 
one, where he deposited them amidst the firing of cannon, 
and the acclamations of several thousands of people. From 
that church they were afterwards transferred to their pre- 
sent situation. The altar of the chapel, of solid silver, 
rises thirty feet in height Groups of military trophies, of 
the same precious metal, are disposed by the side of the 
shrine ; and a golden lamp, presented by Catherine in 1791* 
suspended over it, with a magnificent candelabrum of 
silver, the ^ft of Alexander, together with a silver dish 
ef curious workmanship, holding the bones of several holy 
men, form the wealth and ornament of this splendid monu- 
ment. I have not seen any thing of the same kind superior 
to it in magnificence and costliness of material and decora- 
tion, except the subterraneous temple of marble and precious 
stones erected under the transept of the Duomo at Milan, 
where the body of that great philanthropist Charles Bor- 
roroeus is deposited, within a magnificent crystal case, which 
has kept the remains in a considerable state of preservation. 
Upwards of four thousand pounds weight of silver have 
been used in the construction of the chapel and shnne 
of St. Alexander Nevskoi. The first portion of silver 
so employed was the first produce of the mines of Kolyvan 
sent to the Empress Elizabeth, and by her presented to 
this church. 

Besides the sacred vases and utensils made of precious 
metal, the sacerdotal vestments and symbols of ecclesiastic 
dignity, enriched with precious stones, the sacristy of the 
church offers a great number of other objects of curio- 
sity and interest to the stranger, and of veneration to 
the Russians ; such as the crown of Alexander Nevskoi, 
the baton of command of Peter the First, the small bed 
on which he expired, and several other memorials of 
that Sovereign. None of these I have had an opportunity 


of seeing, as the monks had congregated to their mid-day 
repast by the time we had inspected the church, and I 
give the above account on the faith of another traveller. 

The monks who reside in the monastery are seldom more 
than sixty in number, and often only forty. Each has his 
ceU, but they meet in the refectory and at church. They 
follow the rule of discipline established by Theophanes 
Prokopovitch, and confirmed by Peter the Great two years 
before his death. The Metropolitan of St Petersburgh 
bears the title of Archimandrite of this Monastery. 

In the small and Byzantine church of the Annunciation, 
adjoining to the one just described, is a simple monument 
to Souvoroff, in one of the side chapels ; and another made 
of bronze, richly gilt, to the memory of Miloradovitch. 

When the decorated hearse of Souvoroff arrived before 
the entrance of this church, it was found that the door was 
too small to admit its passage. This perplexed those at 
the head of the solemn procession not a little ; when one of 
the veterans who carried the coffin exclaimed : ** Forward, • 
my comrades, Souvoroff passed every where," and forth- 
with, overcoming every obstacle in their way, the men of 
arms, by redoubled strength, penetrated with their burden 
into the body of the church. 

The short inscription on a stone on the ground before 
the monument of Miloradovitch, tells the recent catastrophe 
which terminated his days. *^ Mort d^une plaie re^ue sur 
la Place d^Isaac par un boulet, et une bayonette, 14th D^- 
oembre, 1825. A. S.^ Few officers had displayed more 
bravery than Miloradovitch in the course of a long and 
glorious career. He had been exposed in more than forty 
general engagements to imminent danger, without ever re- 
ceiving the slightest contusion ; but on that memorable oc- 
casion, a wound inflicted by one of the soldiers whom he 
had before led to victory, cut short his military career. 

VOL. II. o 


I noticed in the immediate vicinity of this monument, a 
curious piece of workmandiip in mother of pearl, consist* 
ing of a large plate of that substance, divided into twelve 
compartments, in which are engraved with minute accu- 
racy, in a space of about three inches square, the figure 
and name of each Saint for every day in the year of the 
Runian church calendar. The centre represents the abode 
of the £temal, with the Saviour and all the Saints con- 
gregated around the triumphant cross. 

On the opposite wall a drapery of solid silver-gilt is sus- 
pended, containing an image^ supported by two angels, of the 
same costly material, resting on the tomb which contaios 
the mortal remains of the late Monsieur Naryschkine, and 
on which is recorded the only title to distincti<»i which 
this family seems proud to claim, that " Piirr I*' est sorti 
de leur sang^ 

It would be useless to repeat the worldly titles of 
many other departed persons here interred, or to say 
more than a few words of the five bronze monuments be- 
longing to the SheremetieiF family, which I observed in 
another still smaller church connected with the cemetery. 
One of the latter records this existence of the nobleman xjS 
that name, who enjoyed the confidence of the founder of 
St. Petersburgh ; and here will be deposited for successive 
generations the members of this extravagantly opulent fa- 
mily ; the present representative of which is a young officer 
of the Guards, possessing, it is said, a revenue of more than 
two millions of roubles. 

The churches within the precincts of St. Alexander 
Nevskoi and its cemetery, constitute the Pantheon of St 
Petersburgh ; but although we meet with in each of those 
places and at every step the remains of the great, we do 
not recogmze the illustrious of the empire in all of them. 


Ostentation, as much as merit, prevails in these fashionable 
habitations of the dead. 

Nowhere can a more striking display of architectural taste, 
pure, inventive, and refined, be seen, than is presented by 
the extensive consecrated ground or cemetery adjoining the 
churches just described, with its hundreds of monuments 
and tokens in memory of the dead. Some of these are 
real master-pieces of art ; and I was struck with the affect- 
ing brevity of the inscriptions they bear; so superior either 
to the amplifications of those which are to be found at the 
Pire la Chaise in Paris, or to icosUsyllabic verses that offend 
the eye in an English churchyard. Every design, every 
device, figure, emblem and decoration, every species of 
material from the most dazzling marble of Carrara, to gold, 
has been resorted to, in order to perpetuate the memory of 
Mends and relatives, or of talent and wealth. Of the latter 
description is a monument of the most gigantic proportions, 
erected to snatch from oblivion the name of Kousoff, a mer- 
chant. It consists of a sc^d cubic block of the most superb 
granite, on which is imposed a solid pedestal of black mar- 
ble, ten feet square, bearing a sarcophagus fourteen feet 
high, of most elegant proportions, surmounted by a gold 
cross, twenty feet in height. At each of the four comers 
there is a colossal candelabrum of cast iron, with entwining 
serpents, of bronze, gilt. The purchase of the ground 
akyne for fixing this monument cost a thousand pounds, and 
the monument sixty thousand roubles. With a more ap- 
propriate intention have the survivors of Turtchaninov, a 
rich proprietor of copper mines, employed Martos in rais- 
ing a monument of solid copper to that individual, in which, 
one is struck with two allegorical figures of the size of 
life, and of the same material, chiselled, not cast, by that 
celebrated artist, besides the marble bust of the deceased. 



Nearer to the centre of this abode of death, a tetra-style 
Ionic temple, in marble of the purest white, crowned by a 
pediment, arrested my attention. It records the many vir- 
tues of an interesting female, the late Countess Potemkin, 
and is the production of Erilloff, an artist of great merit. 
Alto-relievos of the most exquisite execution tell, on 
three sides of the temple, the melancholy story of a 
mother snatched from three lovely babes, which she would 
fain press to her bosom. The Countess, prophetically 
conscious of her approaching fate, looks up calm and 
majestic to the figure of Religion, and rests with con- 
fidence her left hand on the symbol of Christianity. In 
front are the inscription and the arms of the family, in 
.solid gold. 

But why linger in this Necropolis of the great, the 
wealthy, and the present celebrated men in the modem 
history of Russia, when other highly important objects 
claim our attention.^ Let us hence; yet before we quit 
the ground, let us cast a parting look to the spot on which 
rises a white marble column, to mark the tomb of Lomo- 
nossoff, the father of modem Russian poetry. Like Schil- 
ler, this extraordinary man, whose varied talents were of 
the highest order, would have been lying *^ dust to dust,^ 
without a monument, had not the late Great Chancellor 
Michael Woronzow, rescued his country from such a stigma, 
by erecting the present memento at his own expense. The 
Russians, however, can now better appreciate the merits of 
their illustrious countryman ; and a monument, of the 
estimated value of 50,000 roubles, is intended to be erected 
to his memory, by voluntary subscriptions. 

The ancient church of St. Isaac the Dalmatian was 
founded in 1710, by Peter the Great, in commemoration 
of his birthday. Catherine, ever desirous to perpetuate 
the name of her great predecessor, ordered in 1768 that 


the church should be reconstructed in marble, on a more 
extensive scale, worthy of the memory of its founder. 
The building had reached its entablature, when the death 
of that Princess put a stop to all farther proceedings. 
This church, as I have before observed, stands at one 
end of the Admiralty Square, and faces the Neva ; from 
which, however, it is a considerable distance. During the 
reign of Paul it underwent various changes; and after 
many years spent in altering and modifying it, and in en- 
deavouring to correct several important defects in the ori- 
ginal plan of the Empress Catherine ; defects which were 
not a little increased by the want of harmony that existed 
between the church as it stood and the surrounding 
edifice, the late Emperor Alexander approved in 1818 
a plan for its restoration, which had been presented to 
him by Mons. Montferrand, a French architect of ac- 
knowledged merit and great enterprise, and one of the 
most accomplished draughtsmen I know, resident in St. 
Petersburgh. This plan is now in progress of execution, 
and has been so for some years. According to it, the 
form of the church is that of a Greek cross, 3S4 feet long, 
and S88^ feet wide, including the lateral porticos. In 
the centre rises a dome, the exterior diameter of which, 
surrounded by an open peristyle of Ionic columns, mea- 
sures 105 feet. The total elevation of the edifice, from 
the level of the square in which it stands to the ball, which 
is to bear the cross, is equal to S09 English feet. 

The interior of the temple will be ornamented with one 
hundred and eighty-eight columns and pilasters of the 
Corinthian order, of marble drawn from the quarries of 
Finland. The capitals and the bases will be of bronze, 
richly gilt. The arched roof, decorated with various com- 
partments, embellished with every thing that painting, 
sctilpture, and gilding, can afford, will present an ensemble 


worthy of the finest churches of Italy. A great part of 
the old church now existing, in which the prothtM and 
holy tables are placed, has been retained, not only because 
this part offers a noble style of architecture, and is beau- 
tifully finished, but also from motives of religion and vene- 
ration, which the late Emperor entertained for the church 
of his ancestors. 

But the most astonishing, and certainly unparalleled 
feature, of this magnificent edifice, will be the four por- 
ticos which are to decorate its exterior; each of which 
will consist of eight columns in front, and three in the flank, 
with capitals and bases of gilt bronze. These forty-eight 
columns of the Corinthian order, unique in Europe, bare 
been cut out of the rock in Finland, each of one solid 
piece of granite, five feet ten inches in diameter at their 
base, five feet two inches near the astragal, and fifty-six 
feet high; consequently much loftier than those of the 
Roman Pantheon, which measure only forty-six feet nine 
inches and eleven lines. Thirty-seven are already on 
the spot, and twenty of them polished and ready to 
be erected. For this purpose a scaffolding, of a most in- 
genious construction, in imitation of that which was em- 
ployed by the architect Fontana to erect the Obelisk in 
front of St. Peter's at Rome, and several capstans, remark- 
able for the simplicity and power of their principles, the 
invention of the late General of Engineers, Betancourt, 
have been long prepared ; and thirty-two of the columns 
will be on their bases in the course of this summer. Fif- 
teen hundred workmen are constantly employed on the 
premises, under the direction of Monsieur Montferrand and 
his assistants. Messieurs Pasqual, and And romini, the latter 
of whom is an Italian and a most ingenious mechanic* 

* By the arrival of a friend from 8t. Petersburgh^ sinoe the above 
infocmtttion was wriiteiii 1 learn that the fint column was raised ia 


In the building itself, great pixqpress has been made. The 
foundations, and the crypt, in which service is to be pa> 
formed, are completed ; the granite piers, on which the 
pedestals and gold bronze bases of the columns for the 
porticos are to stand are finished, and several of the 
latter are already in their places. Nothing can be richert 
The capitals, which are to be of the same materials, have 
been long preparing. Accompanied by Monsieur Mont- 
ferrand, the architect. Baron Nicolai and myself had the 
satisfaction of going over every part of this vast building, 
of examining the model of the curious scaffolding, and 
machinery for erecting the columns (which latter was with 
great condescension put in motion in our presence by 
several men under the direction of Signor Andromini), 
and of forming an accurate idea of the great simplicity 
of the mode in which the gigantic pillars will be raised 
into their allotted places. This operation will doubtless 
attract a great multitude of spectators ; and were I an ar- 
diitect likely to be engaged in works of importance, I 
should deem a voyage to St, Petersburgh well repaid by 
the advantage of being present on the occasion. It is 
known that a great number of architects of all countries 
have signified their intention of being present at the cere- 
mony, and such an opportunity cannot often occur, which 
neither times past have offered, nor will future ages in 
all probability again afford, of seeing forty-eight columns, 
each of one solid block of highly polished bronze and spark- 
ling granite, seventeen and a half feet in circumference at 

the presence of the Emperor^ the great officers of the Court and the 
Government^ and a great concourse of people^ in May last. The 
operation of elevating the stupendous pillar^ of lifting it up to its ver- 
tical poaitiony and above the level of its pedestal^ and of lowering it 
into the latter, occupied precisely fifty-eight minutes. One of them 
has nnce been so raised every week. 


their basesy and loftier than any that the hand of an architect 
has ever ventured to design. Each cohimn weighs 8,000 
pouds, or S88,000 pounds, and costs 82,000 roubles to the 
state. Nine years have been employed in preparing them on 
the spot, and every possible means has been placed at the 
disposal of the arcliitect to complete a structure which will 
be ranked with the finest monuments of the kind in Europe. 

We were afterwards introduced into the room in which is 
kept the mcxlel of the church as it will appear when completed. 
The effect will be grand in the extreme ; but there may be a 
doubt entertained by many, whether the four smaller domes 
which, in observance of the received principles of Byzantine 
church architecture, are placed at the angles of this colossal 
edifice, will not destroy in a great degree its imposing aspect. 
I may add that, both inside and out, the Temple will be 
cased with costly marble in all its parts, and that the frames, 
joints and supports will every where be of cast-iron, timber 
being excluded from its construction as much as possible. 

Of the Russian churches only one more shall receive 
particular notice in this place, namely, that which with its 
lofty and slender spire, covered with gold glittering in the 
sun, marks to the distant observer the locality of the for- 
tress in the centre of which it is situated. This structure, 
dedicated by Peter the Great to the Apostles St. Peter 
and St. Paul, stands in an open place within the citadel, 
and, contrary to the general custom, has only a single cupola, 
and a tower two hundred and six feet in height, furoisbed 
with a chiming-clock, for which the Tzar paid 45,000 
roubles. The gilt spire rises from this tower one hundred 
and fifty-four feet higher, including the ball and ci^ss sup 
ported by the arm of an aingel ; a proud rival to that which 
decorates the great tower of the Admiralty. 

To this church, the interior structure of which is re- 


markable for its simplicitj, I repaired with Count Sergius 
Strogonoff. On each side of the. altar repose the ashes of 
the Sovereigns of Russia, since the assumption of the Im- 
perial dignity. The tombs, of a square form and of un- 
sculptured stone, are ranged beside each other, bearing the 
Russian arms and the solitary initials of the illustrious 
deceased, devoid of every pompous title. A rich velvet 
pall is thrown over them, on which the initials again 
appear embroidered in gold. By the side of the tomb 
which received the remains of the unfortunate Paul, are 
deposited those of Alexander and his consort. Hundreds 
of military trophies, such as standards, staffs, batons, and 
keys of cities and fortresses taken by the Russians, very 
appropriately surround this abode of mortality, which with 
equal propriety is suffered to produce its intended effect on 
the mind of the observer, without heraldic or architectural 
monuments, and by means of the names alone of those who 
have left numberless mementos in their Imperial resi- 
dence to perpetuate their fame. 

Amongst the ecclesiastical monuments of the capital, the 
Catholic church holds a conspicuous rank. Its order is 
Corinthian, beautifully harmonizing in all its parts ; the 
octostyle portico in particular, and the fine dome sur- 
rounded by twenty-four pillars of the same order, are very 
striking. Its interior, 115 feet in length, capacious, gor- 
geously ornamented with gold and silver, rich soffits, lofty 
columns, and a profusion of paintings, would lead, for a mo- 
ment, to the belief that this is the principal church of the 
capital, and that the ceremonies therein performed, at all 
hours of the day, and in the presence of a vast concourse of 
pe<^le of all ranks, must be those of the religion of the State. 
Those who have watched with anxiety those momentous 
events which have marked the political strife of the last 


twenty years, will look with interest on the tomb of 
Moreau,* who died in consequence of the wounds he re- 
ceived at the battle of Dresden. A plain white tablet, edged 
with dark marble, placed in this church, tells the stranger 
that the conqueror of Hohenlinden was bom at Morlaix 
on the 11th of August 1768, and died at Laun the ftd ci 
September 1818. 

The Lutheran churches of St. Catherine and St. Anne, 
particularly the latter, are justly considered as excellent 
specimens of architecture; but the disposition of their in- 
terior required by the reformed religion, does not admit of 
those embellishments, which, both in the Greek and Catho- 
lic churches, heighten the impression produced on the 

On the Sunday immediately after our arrival, I attended 
service in the English church, a very handsome and substan- 
tial edifice, situated about the centre of the English Quay, 
where it presents a noble front to the river, being decorated 
by a colonnade, placed on a massive and well-distributed 
basement story, in which are the apartments of the Rev. E. 
Law, nephew of the late Lord Ellenborough, and Chaplain 
to the Factory. This church was first built in 1754, and 
reconstructed in its present form in 1815. The entrance, 
properly speaking, is from a street at the back of the 
Quay, through a handsome gateway. The interior is neat 
and simple, and has the great advantage of being well 
warmed and comfortably fitted up. There is a state 
pew for the British Ambassador on the right of the altar, 
and opposite to the pulpit : it is surmounted by the Boyal 
Arms of England. The altar-piece is a Deposition from 
the Cross, a very creditable paintitig, on the sides of which 
are. two handsome Corinthian pillars of marble. The fe- 

* Captain Jones has^ in his'account of St. Petersburgh, erroneously 
placed the tomb of this General in the Church of our Lady of Kasan. 


male part of the congregation, as in the Lutheran churches, 
sat apart from the rest, and occupied the left side of the 
church. Mr. Law is an impressive reader, and a clear ex- 
pounder of the holy writings, and of the principles of mo- 
rality &s well as religion ; and the congregation appeared 
evidently interested in the matter as well as the manner of 
his pulpit eloquence. In the Royal or Ambassador's pew 
sat Mr. Disbrowe, the Minister from the British Court, 
with whom I had an opportunity of conversing after the 
service, and from whom I received every possible civility 
during my stay at St. Petersburgh. The church has no 
gallery, and, although capacious, is insufficient to accom- 
modate more than a part of the English residents. The 
resident English at St. Petersburgh are, I am told, about 
S500 in number. It is the custom of this church, in the 
prayer for the Eing^ to introduce the name of the Emperor: 
in the Litany, also, after the Royal Family has been prayed 
for, the clergyman says, with emphatic voice, ** that it may 
please thee to bless and pre^rve his Imperial Majesty, and 
all the Imperial family.'' The same custom of praying 
for the health of his Majesty the King of England, I am 
'informed, is also observed in the Russian Ambassador'^s 
Chapel in London. After the conclusion of the service I 
paid my respects, at their handsome apartments on the base- 
ment story, to the clergyman and his lady, to whom I had 
brought letters of introduction from his brother. The house 
of the Chaplain to the Factory, as well as the church, is 
exempt from the perquisitions, or domiciliary visits of the 

I had, in the course of my travels through Greece, in 
1803-4, enjoyed frequent opportunities of witnessing the ser- 
vice of the Greek Church ; and by way of comparing it with 
tbtit performed according to the Russian rites, while in St. 
Petersburgh, I attended more than one of the principal 
churches. The first thing that struck me, was the un- 


distinguishing equality with which all ranks of persons, 
from the Prince to the boor, assembled promiscuously in the 
body of the church and near to the sanctuary, standing or 
kneeling, but never sitting, there being no sort of accommo- 
dation for that purpose. The service is long and compli- 
cated, and, like that of the Roman Catholic creed, varies in 
many points every day ; but that part which is permanent 
and of daily occurrence, is striking and impressive. The 
monk, priest, or dignitary of the church, reads prayers, 
collects, and psalms, from a variety of volumes, all of 
which are written in the Slavonic language ; and, like the 
Latin used in the services of the Roman Catholic churches, 
is not readily, if at all, understood by every class of people. 
The greater part of the Russo-Greek church service con- 
sists in psalms and hymns, which are either sung or read in 
a sort of recitative. No musical instruments are admitted 
in the Greek church, and oh this point the Russians are 
very strict observers ; but they are permitted to have ex- 
perienced and well-taught choral singers, to assist them in 
increaising the solemnity of the worship of their church, 
already considerable from the magnificence of its decorations 
and the splendour of the ecclesiastical vestments. Three 
distinct services are performed each day in the week; at all 
churches; the vespers, and on festive days the midnight 
service (mesonyction), the matins, or morning prayers, and 
the liturgy. The Greek church observes its festivals 
from sunset to sunset. The benediction of the people by 
the priest, and the frequent exclamation of " Let us pray P 
which he or his deacon pronounces, with the responses, by 
the clerks or singers, of ** Lord, have mercy !^ form an 
essential part of them all. 

The ordinary religious ceremonies, which the Russo-Greek 
church requires to be observed on many occasions in the 
course of the year— the celebration of anniversaries of the 
Imperial Family, of important events and victories, by sing- 


ing the Te Deunij either in the Imperial Chapel, or in the 
church of our Lady of Kazan — the practice of observing 
certain solemnities or festivals at Christmas and Easter, such 
as the Benediction of the Waters in January, the lavipedium 
and the Offering of the Paschal Lamb or Egg at Easter — 
the Imperial christenings, and the lying in state in the 
cathedral of the bodies of deceased sovereigns, and of the 
great in all other churches, afford so many opportunities 
for the Russo-Greek clergy to display grandeur and mag- 
nificence in the celebration of their rites, and of which they 
fully avail themselves, to the edification of the congregated 
Christians. During my stay in the capital, such opportu- 
nities occurred at the chapel of the Imperial Winter Pa- 
lace, and in the cathedral of our ^ady of Kazan, when a 
Te Deum was sung for the taking of Erivan, a funeral 
service was performed for the repose of the soul of the late 
Emperor, and a solemn thanksgiving took place to cele- 
brate the anniversary of the accession to the throne of his 
present Majesty. Such as have witnessed the gorgeous 
ceremonies that distinguish the Roman Catholic church 
from every other, will easily form an idea of those which 
were observed on the several occasions just enumerated, 
when the presence of the Court, with an endless suite of 
great and illustrious characters, glittering in all the splen- 
dour of earthly honour, prostrated themselves in deep 
humility before the sanctuary, at which the Metropolitan, 
assisted by a multitude of dignitaries of the church, priests, 
and deacons, officiated, and whose voices were drowned in 
the loud and frequent aspirations of devotion from the 
assembled people. 

The Russian service differs not less in the rituals for the 
celebration of matrimony and the prayers for the dead, 
than in any other of its parts, from every other species of 
creed in the Christian religion. I had an opportunity of see- 
ing both of these, as well as that portion of the ceremonies 


belonging to them, which ^is unconnected with the church 
service. Early one day in November, a kind young friend, 
the son of Mr. Anderson, the oldest English merchant in St 
Petersburgh, whose attentions to me were unremitting, put 
a finely embossed card into my hands, on which was print- 
ed, in Russian characters, the following invitation, literally 

^* Ivan Ivanovitch and Prascovia Constantinovna Ivanoff 
humbly request the favour of your attendance to the mar- 
riage ceremony of their daughter Anna Ivanowna with 
Nicholai Demetrivich Borissow, and to the dinner table, 
this November the 13th day, in the year 1827, at two 
o'clock in the afternoon." 

On the embossed border of the card, delicately edged 
with rose colour, the emblematic figure of Hymen was re- 
presented on the one side standing under a palm tree, be- 
tween the sleeping dogs of fidelity, and inviting from the 
other side the figures of the bride and bridegroom. I 
learned that the parties were wealthy Russian hemp-com- 
mission-agents, and most excellent people ; and as such an 
invitation promised to afford me an opportunity of witness* 
ing the church marriage ceremony, of which I had read so 
many dissimilar accounts, I gladly accepted it. 

At two the friends of the parties assembled from all 
quarters in the winter church of the Annunciation^ in the 
Vassileiostrow, where a great concourse of people bad 
already collected round the choristers or chanters, who, in 
the most delightful manner imaginable, and in the fuga 
style, were singing hymns, mixing with skilful combination 
the sopranos and bass voices. We beguiled half an hour 
in listening to their strains, waiting for the arrival of the 
bride. In the mean time I surveyed the picturesque groups 
of people that kept gradually forming in various parts of 
the church, where the kaftaned Russian^ with his well- 
caressed beard, mixed with the throng of young and good- 


looking females. Some of the Jatter dresfled in the fashion 
of the country, their heads profusely ornamented with gold, 
and embroidered veils ; and others, according to the more 
attractive garb of the French, presented a striking contrast 
to many of the assembled men, whom I understood to 
belong to the class of Russian merchants, but who wore 
neither the kaftan nor the beard. Their smooth and 
shaven faces, with the general style of dress common to 
most of the European nations, scarcely permitted their being • 
distinguished from several English merchants present, who 
had been invited on the occasion. The officiating priest, 
decked in his rich church vestments, accompanied by the 
deacon, advanced from the sanctuary towards the door of 
entrance into the church, and there received the pair about 
to be made happy, to whom he delivered a lighted' taper, 
making, at the same time, the sign of the cross thrice on 
their foreheads, and conducted them to the upper part of 
the nave. Incense was scattered before them, while maids, 
splendidly attired, walked between the paranymphy, or 
bridegroom and bride. The Greek church requires not 
the presence of either of the parents of the bride on such 
an occaaon. Is it to spare them the pain of voluntarily 
surrendeiing every authority over their child to one who 
is a stranger to her blood ? I stood by the side of the 
table on which were deposited the rings, and before which 
the priest halted at the conclusion of a litany, wherein the 
choristers assisted, and from which he pronounced, in a loud 
and impressive voice, the following prayer, his face being 
turned towards the sanctuary, and the bride and bride- 
groom placed immediately behind him, holding their lighted 

^^ O Eternal God, — thou who didst collect together the 
scattered atoms by wondrous union,' and didst join them 
by an indissoluble tie, who didst bless Isaac and Re- 
becca, and made them heirs of thy promise; give thy 


blessing unto these thy servants, and guide them in every 
good work : For thou art the merciful God, the lover of 
mankind y and to thee we offer up our praise now and for 
ever^ even unto ages of ages." 

The import of this beautiful invocation was, at the time, 
interpreted to me by a friend well acquainted with the 
whole service and office of espousals, the language of which 
he assured me was all equally impressive ; of the truth of 
which assertion I have since had ample opportunity of 
being convinced by a perusal of Dr. King^s excellent work 
before-mentioned, from which I have borrowed the trans- 
lation of the above prayer. 

The priest, next turning round to the couple, blessed 
them, and taking the rings from the table, gave one to each, 
beginning with the man, and proclaiming aloud that they 
stood betrothed, ^^ now and for ever, even unto ages of 
ages/' which declaration he repeated thrice to them, while 
they mutually exchanged the rings an equal number of times. 
The rings were now again surrendered to the priest, who 
crossed the forehead of the couple with them, and put them 
on the fore-finger of the right hand of each ; and turning to 
the sanctuary, read another impressive part of the service, 
in which an allusion is made to all the circumstances in 
the Holy Testament, where a ring is mentioned as the 
pledge of union, honour, and power ; and prayed the 
Lord to ^* bless the espousals of thy servants, Anna Iva- 
nowna and Nicholai Demetrivich, and confirm them in 
thy holy union; for thou in the beginning didst create 
them male and female, and appoint the woman for an help 
to the man, and for the succession of mankind. Do thou, 
O Lord Dur God, who hast sent forth thy truth upon 
thine inheritance, and thy promise upon thy servants 
our fathers, whom thou hast chosen from generation to 
generation, look upon this servant, and this thine hand- 


maid, and establish the espousals made between them in 
fidelity and unity, in truth and love, and let thine angel 
go before them to guide them all the days of their life.'' 

The priest now taking hold of the hands of both parties, 
led them forward and caused them to stand on a silken carpet, 
which lay spread before them. The congregation usually 
watch this moment with intense curiosity, for it is augured 
that the party which steps first on the rich brocade will have 
the mastery over the other through life. In the present case, 
our fair bride secured possession of this prospective privi- 
lege with modest forwardness. Two silver Imperial crowns 
were next produced by a layman, which the priest took, 
and first blessing the bridegroom, placed one of them on his 
bead, while the other destined for the bride, was merely 
held over her head by a friend, lest its admirable super- 
structure, raised by Charles^ the most fashionable per- 
ruquier of the capital employed on this occasion, should be 
disturbed. That famed artist had successfully blended the 
spotless flower, emblematic of innocence, with the rich 
tresses of the bride, which were farther embellished by a 
splendid tiara of large diamonds. Her white satin robe, 
from the hands of Mademoiselle Louise, gracefully pen- 
cilling the contours of her bust, was gathered around her 
waist by a zone, studded with precious stones, which fas- 
tened to her side a bouquet of white flowers. 

The common cup being now brought to the priest, he 
blessed it, and gave it to the bridegroom, who took a sip 
from its contents thrice, and transferred it to her who was 
to be his mate, for a repetition of the same ceremony. 
After a short pause, and some prayers from the responser, 
in which the choristers joined with musical notes, the priest 
took the bride and bridegroom by the hand, the friends 
holding their crowns, and walked with them round the 



desk tlirice, having both their right hands fast in his, from 

West to East, saying — 
** Exult, O Isaiah ! for a Virgin has conceived and 

brought forth a Son, Emanuel, God and man ; the East 

is his name. Him do we magnify, and call the Virpn 

blessed 1'' 

Then taking off the bridegroom^s crown, he said— 
\^Be thou magnified, O bridegroom, as Abraham! Be 

thou blessed as Isaac, and multiplied as Jacob, walking in 

peace, and performing the commandments of Grod in ri^t- 


In removing the bride^s crown, he exclaimed — 

** And be thou magnified, O bride, as Sarah 1 Be thou 
joyful as Rebecca, and multiplied asRachael ; delightingin 
thine own husband and observing the bounds of the bv, 
according to the good pleasure of God/^ 

The ceremony now drew to its conclusion, the tapen 
were extinguished, and taken from the bride and bride- 
groom, who walking towards the holy screen were dis- 
missed by the priest, received the congratulati ons of the 
company, and saluted each other. 

We all now burned to our carriages^ the youngest to 
their sledges, and took the direction of the house of the 
bride^s father, where we were received by that perstm in 
his Russian costume, and with a flowing beard, who con- 
ducted the company, at the sound of a full band of muac, 
into the banqueting-room, already prepared for about fifty 
guests, with tables decked with golden p/a^^atu: and vases 
bearing artificial flowers, mixed with piles of fruit and ion- 
bojis. Here a large assemblage of friends had already met, 
through which we made our way to an inner room, where 
the bride, seated by the side of her mother, and surrounded 
by matrons and damsels, received, with becoming modesty, 
our congratulations. I was surprised at finding in the 


Gynaeceum of a class of society of this description, such 
agreeable and easy manners, untainted by the least gaucherie 
or awkward pretensions. My engagements prevented my 
remaining to dinner ; but I returned time enough in the 
evening to be present at the conclusion of the day^s cere- 
mony. The dinner had passed off without any remarkatde 
occurrence, and considering the enormous quantity of Cham- 
pagne consumed (a very favourite beverage on all gala- 
days with the middle classes of society at St. Petersburgh,) 
I found the party almost philosophical. Toasts to the 
bride and bridegroom had been repeatedly drank, and the 
night was far advanced when the Passajonaiatetz took the 
bride by the hand, and conducted her into the bed-cham- 
ber, where he consigned her to the care of all the married 
ladies present, himself retiring immediately after. Those 
matrons assisted in disrobing her of the bridal vestments, 
and in assuming the garb appropriate to the chamber in 
which they were. The Passajonaiatetz next performed 
the like office of conducting the bridegroom to the cham- 
ber, who put on his schlafrack^ or night-gown, the married 
ladies having previously retired. These operations being 
concluded the doors of the bed-chamber were thrown open, 
and we all walked in in procession, quaffing a goblet of 
Champagne to the health of the parties, kissing the bride's 
hands, who returned the salutations on our cheeks, and 
embracing it la Franfaise the cheeks of the bridegroom, who 
luckily, in the present instance, had neither the Russian 
beard, nor the modem English whiskers. With one voice, 
we then wished the happy pair a hearty blessing and with- 
drew, when the doors were closed. The company gra- 
dually dispersed. Dinners and dancing went on for three 
successive days. On the first of these I attended for a 
few minutes, being determined to satisfy my curiosity to 
the last. I had, however, to pay for this indulgence, having 

p 2 


been compelled, by immemorial usage, on entering the 
room, to drink a bumper of the sparkling juice to the 
dregs^ in honour of the bride, to undergo the same cere- 
mony of bride and bridegroom^s salutation, and to whirl 
half a round of a waltz wijth the former. But I had made 
up my mind to bear even worse inconveniences than these, 
should it have been necessary, rather than forego the ad- 
vantage of judging for mysel/ of the truth or falsehood 
of the many exaggerated and fanciful descriptions givea 
by travellers of a Russian wedding. To complete this 
account of what I witnessed^ I should add, that on the 
eighth day, the happy pair attended once more at the 
churcl), for the ceremony of *^ dissolving the crowns," 
which is performed by the priest, with appropriate prayers, 
in allusion to the rites of matrimony. 

From this scene of joy we turn to one of grief aod 
sorrow, to examine the usages prevalent in St. Petersbuigh 
in regard to the dispoang of the dead. A Russian funeral, 
from what I have seen in that capital, differs but little from 
that of the Catholics. There are, however, a few circum- 
stances attending it which are commonly observed in the 
interior of the country, and sometimes even at St. Peters- 
burgh. When a patient is in imminent danger, and death 
seems to await him, he assembles his family round his bed, 
and blesses them with an image, and with some bread and 
salt, distributing gifts, and declaring his testamentary de- 
termination. After his dissolution, the eyes and mouth 
are closed by the nearest relation, when two copper onns ^ 
are laid on the former ; a practice not uncommon among 
the lower classes in England, but stiU more frequeotin 
Ireland. After some time the body is washed and dressed ; 
if it be that of a girl, a garland of flowers is placed on her 
head ; but on a married woman, a rich coiffe. Children are 
habited entirely in robes of a pink colour, a bouquet of 



flowers is placed in one hand, and the coffin is also strewed 
and afterwards 611ed with flowers. In all cases, the hands 
are crossed on the breast. A priest is now sent for, who 
perfumes the body with incense, singing a psalmody over 
it On the third day it is placed in the coffin, which 
is kept open and exposed on a table, and a succession of 
priests and clerks attend in the chamber of death reading 
the gospel or the psalter, both by day and by night, until 
the burial has taken place. The coffin is surrounded by 
a profusion of torches according to the rank and fortune 
of the deceased. In the case of girls, it is not the priest 
who watches the body day and night, but young girls of 
the same age, who sing psalms all the time, and relieve 
each other. On the third day the body is taken to the 
church, where the coffin is still left open, while the offici- 
ating priest recites the prayer for the dead. At the 
funerals of the great, the procession is accompanied by a 
large number of priests, all carrying lighted torches, and 
ringing all the while the trisagiah. In some parts of 
Russia, women are hired to lament and mourn over the 
dead ; a practice borrowed from the ancients. The coffin 
is either carried on men's shoulders, or transported to the 
church in a sort of car, where, after the short service for 
the dead has been read, the priest and then all the relations 
of the departed, take their last farewell, some kissing the 
body, others only the coffin. The latter is made of dif« 
ferent sorts of wood, and covered with cloth of a pink 
colour for young people and children ; crimson for women ; 
brown for widows ; but in no case black. After the in- 
terment, the friends, who have been invited by cards to the 
ceremony, just as if it were to a dinner or to a rout, 
return to the house of the deceased, where a table spread 
with refreshments offers an opportunity to the tired spec- 
tators to recruit their strength. The principal dish is the 


Koutiydf which is a composition of honey, wheat, and raisins.* 
The priest first blesses and incenses this dish, of which every 
one immediately after partakes. During the succeeding 
six weeks, psalms are sung and prayers read every day in 
the chamber in which the departed terminated his exist- 
ence. On the third, the sixth, eleventh, and fortieth day 
after the interment, the priests and many of the relatives 
again repair to the church and celebrate a solemn service^ 
among the ceremonies of which the Xoi/ftya forms, oncemore, 
not the least conspicuous feature. It is laid out on a small 
table in the centre of the church, the priest blessing it, and 
incensing it, that the attendants may not only partake of itt 
but take it home. All these funeral ceremonies invariably 
terminate by singing requiem etemunif eternal rest to the 
departed. The music though tristful is, at times, beauti- 
ful, and quite appropriate to such solemn occasions. 

* Kautiyd is generally prepared in a small dish or deep plate, filM 
with boiled wheats round which honey is poured^ and over it rabiitf 
are placed in the form of a cross. Wheat b used aaan emUem of 
resurrection, in allusion to St. Paul's 1 Corinth, xv. 36 — 44. && 
Honey, &c. conformable to the sincere wishes of Bequiem etemum to 
the departed friends. 



Preliminarf Notice. — The University of St. Petersburgh. — Scien- 
tific Edacation. -^General and Elementary System of Education. 
— Sdiools for the People. — Encouragement for the Cultivation 
of the Russian Language. — The Imperial Russian Academy of 
Literature. — New Plan of elementary Education. — Professor 
Greitsch's Lectures on the Russian Language. — Pedagogic Schools. 
— Sentiments of the reigning Emperor respecting Education. — 
His means of promoting it. — Enumeration of Puhlic Places of 
Edacati<m existing in St. Petersburgh. — Oriental Institute.— 
The Land Cadet Corps, and the Marine Cadet Corps. — Naval 
Academy^ and other Establishments. «— Domestic or Private Edu- 
cation. — General Benkendorff. — Imperial Message. — Doctor 
RohL -— Recognition. — The Communaute des DemoiseUet Nobles. 
— The Institute of St. Catherine. — System of Female Education 
for the higher Classes of Society. — Imperial Public Library. — 
Kriloffy the Fabulist. — Manuscript Letters of Sovereigns. — Spe* 
eimen of Louis XIV.'s early Notions of Royal Authority. — The 
Press. — Encouragement to Authors. — Modern Russian Litera- 
ture. — Death of Karamsin, the Historian. — Russian Poetry. — 
Alexander Poushkine, the Russian Byron. — Fabulists, Soumaro- 
keffy Khemnitzer, Dmitrieff, Ismailoff, and B. Pouschkine. — The 
Romantic School. — Baratinsky. — Joukovsky. — Mademoiselle 
Zenaide Volkoasky. — Dramatic Literature. — Prince Chak- 
boTiky. — Number of Books published in Russia, since the Intro- 
duction of the Art of Printing. — Periodical Litbrature. — List 
of Periodical Publications at St. Petersburgh and Moscow. 

In proportion as I proceed in my present undertaking, 
^ my apprehensions increase lest I should tire out the pa- 



tience of my readers by the accumulating descriptions of 
public establishments and buildings connected with my 
account of the city of St. Petersburgh. I look back to 
the subdivisions of this part of my work, which already 
amount to a considerable number, and which chiefly rdate 
to those two points of investigation, with some feelings of 
doubt, whether the public will be found to agree with me, in 
attaching that interest to considerations of such a nature, 
which I cannot but think they deserve. These doubts are 
not a little increased by the prospect lying before me, 
of what must yet follow to complete a faithful picture of 
St. Petersburgh. Dry matters of fact, I am aware, are not 
always amusing, however necessary; and still less, per- 
haps, is the methodical arrangement which I have adopted 
on this occasion. Unenlivened, I admit, by either playful- 
ness or solidity of style, such a lengthened account of the 
actual state of the Russian metropolis, may be considered 
tedious. But how is the Enghsh reader to judge for him- 
self of the real state of the Russian capital, in all its various 
departments, and to form a correct idea of the present spirit, 
if not of the people at large, at least of those who lead, and 
will ultimately mould that nation, to which the eyes of 
Europe are at present directed ? That this can only be 
effected by patiently examining the public institutions 
of the capital, by inquiring into the nature of the efforts 
made to improve them, by studying the character of the 
men who are at their head ; in fine, by comparing wfcat was 
with what is. and is likely to be the rank of the Russians 
in the scale of European nations, is a truism too manifest 
to require demonstration. To accomplish such objects, 
therefore, both minuteness of detail and methodical distribu- 
tion of subjects are absolutely requisite; and to this merit 
alone I lay claim in my present performance, and in this spi- 
rit I shall crave permission to proceed. Conclusions I shall 


not attempt to draw ; but the materials for enabling my 
readers themselves to form them correctly, shall not be want- 
ing, — ^accurate and full — as far as industry could procure 
them, in the short space of time during which I was absent 
from England — and not disfigured by prejudice either way. 

I shall now turn to the consideration of those Institu- 
tions which may be assumed to form a fair index of tlie 
state of education in the capital, and of that branch of 
knowledge which naturally flows from it, — literature. On 
the latter subject I can only offer the abstract opinions of 
others collected in the cpurse of conversation, or derived 
from published statements, some of which have lately 
appeared, both here and abroad, being myself totally un- 
acquainted with the language of the country. 

The University of St. Petersburgh. first claims our at- 
tention. It is one of the many Institutions for the ad- 
vancement of public education for which Russia stands 
indebted to her late excellent Sovereign, and which I am 
assured are especially fostered and patronised by his pre- 
sent Majesty. The University of St. Petersburgh, however, 
is not as complete in all those branches which generally con- 
stitute such establishments, as the other Russian Universi- 
ties. Literature and jurisprudence may indeed be said to 
be at present the only divisions in full activity. Religious 
instruction is committed, as I before observed, to the Holy 
Synod, and medical education is obtained in an Institution 
specifically founded for that purpose, which I shall soon 
have occasion to notice. The spacious buildings, to which I 
have alluded in another part of this volume, called colleges, 
situated between the Palace of the Academy of Sciences and 
that of the Fine Arts, are now occupied by the students 
who attend the University. Monsieur de Gouroff, a French 
gentleman, whose literary merits have been appreciated 
both by the English while he resided in this country as an 


emigrant, and by the eulightened classes of St. Petersburgh, 
and who Russianized his name by the termination it now 
bears, in order that he might escape being sent out of the 
country as a Frenchman during the political troubles in the 
Nqrthyisat present Rector of the University ; but the general 
direction of the studies is confided to another oflSoer, who ib 
himself dependent on the Minister of public instruction. 
Public report speaks highly of some of the professors of 
the University as men of considerable merit and profound 
learning ; among the names which I have heard mentioned 
in a creditable manner are those of professors Boutyrski 
and Tolmatcheff. Science is also intended to form a branch 
of education at this University. The more liberal feeling 
which is becoming manifest every day, on the latter subject, 
requires only some able, zealous, and active savatUf to 
increase it and convert it to a wholesome purpose. 

As the means of affording general education, however, to 
families resident in or near the capital, the University will 
continue to prove serviceable so long as there are men of 
eminence attached to it. On the subject of education, both 
public and private, much has been done since the time of 
Catherine in Russia, and of course in the capital. The 
general system appears to be very extensive, and modelled 
much after the manner of that of France and the Nether. 
lands, and indeed of those countries in which public 
education is in the hands of Government, and not left, as in 
the case of England, to the exertion of private individuals 
or Corporations. Besides the six Universities, already men- 
tioned as existing in Russia, with the Academies, Seminaries, 
and other establishments for the education of those who are 
destined for the church, to be met with in great numbers, 
and to which I have already alluded ; there is a Gymnasium, 
and sometimes more than one, in the chief town of each 
Government ; a principal, or high school, in each of the dis- 


tiicts into which the governments are divided ; and a pa- 
rochial school in every parish of a district In many of 
these, and in those belonging to the government of St. 
Petersburgh and to the capital in particular, the Lancas- 
teiian system has been long adopted with success. •All 
these schools are gratuitous. 

Hitherto, as I have been informed, the Russian lan- 
guage had been neglected ; but a great change is certainly 
taking place in this respect. The foundation of the Im- 
perial Russian Academy, although not of a recent date, must 
be admitted to have influenced in some degree this refor.^ 
mation. That institution, which resembles the La Crusca^ 
or the Academic Franfaise^ consists of members, some of 
whom have salaries, and whose particular province is to 
promote the study of the native language, to purify it of 
all foreign idioms and words, to superintend the compila- 
tion of accurate grammars and dictionaries, and by their 
own example in the publication of appropriate essays and 
memoirs, to improve and polish the style of Russian com- 
potdtion. By researches into the history of the Russian 
language, its origin, and provincial peculiarities, they also 
endeavour to enlarge its sphere, and by that means its 
power and influence. An instance of the earnest desire 
exifldng in the highest quarter, as well as on the part of 
the upper dasses, to improve, and also to render more fami- 
liar the use at their native language, may be found in the 
enoouragement given to Professor Greitsch, the author of 
a new Russian Grammar, the first part of which has lately 
appeared under the immediate patronage of the Emperor, 
and of which report speaks highly. A second equally 
strong proof of the wish of that Monarch to see the Rus- 
sian language more universally adopted, is afibrded by the 
recent regulations respecting the public lectures to be held 
at the University, and which in future are to be delivered 


in the language of the country, and not in Grerman, as had 
hitherto been the case, most of the Professors being Ge> 
mans, or from the Germano-Russian Provinces. The 
President, Monsieur Ouvaroff, of whom I have abeady 
made honourable mention, knd who filled at one time the 
office of Curator of public Instruction, has set the example 
to other writers and heads of Departments of both writing 
and speaking on all public occasions in the purest Rusdao, 
instead of the French language, which was before com- 
monly employed. But to their celebrated historian, Ea- 
ramsin, the Russians are indebted for the first model of 
classic prose written in their native language, and to be 
found in his much- esteemed history of Russia. 

A new plan of elementary instruction for the whole 
Empire, and for the schools of the two capitals in parti- 
cular, is now preparing for those establishments which 
are immediately under the Crown. This subject appears 
in a particular manner to have arrested the attention 
of the reigning Emperor, who has visited personally, and 
without any attendant, most of the Imperial Insti- 
tutions, in order to make himself acquainted with their 
existing condition. New elementary works are ordered to 
be composed by select Professors for the various branches 
of public instruction. Much, of course, in such a plan, 
will depend on the choice made of those who are to be 
engaged in it. St. Petersburgh is by no means deficient 
in able men, although their reputation may not have 
reached other European latitudes; and the selections al- 
ready made from them, in addition to the personal cha- 
racter of the Sovereign, are a guarantee of the liberal 
spirit which will doubtlessly preside over the new sys- 
tem of public education. Professor Greitsch, the author of 
the Grammaire raisonniey has been appointed to prepare 


a course of lectures on the Russian language, for the use 
of the primary and parqchial schools. 

In addition to these improvements, it should be stated 
that the Russians have adopted the Frenoh and German 
plan of connecting, with the University, schools, whose 
sole object is to provide teachers capable of disseminat-^ 
ing in a successful manner the benefits of instruction. 
This is as it should be. The tkoles Normales of France, 
and Pedagogic Schools of Grermany, have produced ex- 
cellent results. So will those attached to the University 
of St. Petersburgh. 

I have already stated in its proper place what are the 
sentiments of the present Sovereign on the subject of 
education. The patronage which his Majesty proposes 
to extend to all the public institutions which have some 
branch of education for their object, proves the earnest- 
ness and liberality of those intentions. It has been stated, 
and truly stated, that an absolute Sovereign, who pro- 
motes the diffusion of knowledge among his subjects, and 
devises the best means of raising them higher and higher 
in the ranks of intellectual nations, confers on them a 
boon which is even more precious than the adaptation of 
political institutions called liberal. This proposition needs 
scarcely any demonstration; for that Monarch who accords 
such a benefit, cannot again take it away from his people ; 
whereas he may do so witli facility in regard to the latter 

The mere enumeration of the public Establishments 
existing in St. Petersburgh, intended for the diffusion 
of knowledge in all its branches, of which I took notice 
during my stay in that capital, will alone be sufficient 
to convey an idea of the attention paid to education in 
that city. 


For the civil part of the population, we find as before 
stated — an University— ^n Axrademy of Literature— an 
Oriental Institute for the study and cultivation of Oriental 
Asiatic languages * — a School for the Deaf and Dumb, on 
the plan of Mons. Sicard, placed under the immediate pro- 
tection of the Empress Mother— 4in Academy of Medicine 
— a Mining School ; an tlcole de Commerce ; an InstihU 
Forestier ; and others. For the benefit of the Army-— a 
School for the Subalterns of the Guard ; another for the 
Children of Soldiers ; and another for the Orphans of the 
Military ; two Cadet Corps ; one of Pages ; an Artillery 
School ; another for the Engineers ; an Institute of Roads 
and Communications ; and, for the use of the Navy, besides 
the Schools of Elementary Education, a Naval Academy, 
and an Institute of Naval Architecture. All that relates 
to the establishments for the education of the cl^gy, has 
been already mentioned, so that we have here sufBoieDt 
evidence that public education is not neglected in St. Pe- 

* Though this institution has only existed five years, yet it has 
already produced some good results. A young student, educated at 
that estahlishment, Mons. Botianoff, has published a Russian transla- 
tion of those curious Arabic poems, which were composed before the 
appearance of Mahomet, and are preserved suspended in the temple 
of Mecca, from which circumstance they have received the general 
name of ModUaca. I had the good fortune of forming the acquaint- 
ance of Baron Scholing, who is a perfect OrientalO'tnane, and a most 
amiable as well as erudite person. This gentleman studies Chinese 
all day with a Russian monk, who passed ten years in China, and 
spends the best part of his fortune in the purchase of Chinese books, 
of which he has already a very valuable collection, amounting to S»000. 
He is thoroughly acquainted with most of the European modem lan- 
guages; a gentleman full of mirth and pleasing anecdote, and veiy 
much r^ndu in the best society. After my lecture, which be did 
me the honour of attending, I had a long conversation with him on 
the subject of the Asiatic establishment above-mentioned, from 
which he seemed to anticipate excellent results. 


tersburgh. Now some perscHis have said — ^^ This is all 
very well on paper, and we know that the Russians are 
fond of having it supposed that they have more institutions 
for the instruction of the people than other nations ; but 
these are names, and names only, without any substance.'^ 
The answer which I would give to such assertions, is this : 
I have had ocular demonstration of the existence of all these 
establishments in some way or another, and they appeared 
to me not only to be at work at present in good earnest, each 
according to its own object, but to have been so for many 
years past I may be mistaken ; but Europe will not be long 
before it sees the happy results of such a system to Russia. 

On the subject of domestic or private education^ as I 
cannot speak from my own experience, I shall therefore 
say nothing. I understand, however, that the number 
of private teachers and tutors in St. Petersburgh is very 
considerable, and that a great many foreigners profess to 
tench Latin and the modem foreign languages, without 
being quali6ed for the task. Private teachers are known 
under the name of OutckiteL Their terms are exceed- 
ingly moderate, and they are in general Swiss or Germans. 
By way of utilising my time, as the French say, I engaged 
one of the latter to give me a lesson of two hours in his 
native language, at six o'clock every morning, during my 
stay in St. Petersburgh ; and for this service he asked me 
the moderate sum of thirty roubles a week. 

Though so much attention has been paid to the edu« 
cation of the male part of the population, that of the 
female portion has certainly not been neglected. In re- 
gard to the superior classes of society, to which my ob- 
servations must for the present be confined, the desire of 
having them properly educated, led, about thirty or forty 
years ago, to the foundation of two great institutions 
in St. Petersburgh, for the education of young ladies. 


These, inasmuch as they partake of both a public and a 
private nature, and are either unique in Europe, or have 
served as models for those which may exist elsewhere, of a 
similar description, deserve particular notice. The two in- 
stitutions in question are specially governed by, and may 
be said to be entirely the work of the Empress-mother, 
who has been indefatigable in bringing them to their pre- 
sent state of perfection. If it be admitted that a conven- 
tual education, free from pedantry and monastic nonsense, 
during which a young female, associating for some years 
with a great number of companions of the same age, is 
taught solid as well as ornamental accomplishments, ac- 
cording to the best and most modern plans of instruction, 
is likely to produce more favourable results than solitary or 
home education, then the Communaute des Demoiselles 
Nobles^ and the Imtitut de St. Catherine^ as they now exist 
in St. Petersburgh, must be acknowledged to be the best 
establishments of that description, of which the reader will 
soon be able to judge. 

Among the several persons of distinction to whom I was 
introduced by Count Woronzow in St. Petersburgh, and 
whose acquaintance was highly useful in procuring me 
many facilities of which an inquiring stranger stands in need, 
I must not omit to mention General Benkendorff, chefdu 
corps gendarmes^ and commandant du quartier general 
of his Imperial Majesty. This gallant officer, who espe- 
cially enjoys the confidence of the Emperor, is brother to 
the Princess Lieven, the lady of the Russian ambassador 
in London, and was in the habit of frequenting the house 
of Count Woronzow. Immediately after my arrival, I inti- 
mated to him the great desire I felt of visiting the public 
establishments of the Empress-mother ; and on the follow- 
ing day, with a promptitude which calls for my warmest 
thanks, he was kind enough to communicate to noe a 


gracious message from her Majesty, expressive of her 
approbation of my intension, and stating that she had 
directed her principal physician. Doctor Ruhl, to escort 
me to the different institutions placed under her own 
immediate protection. 

I lost not a moment in paying my respects to that gen- 
tleman, whom I found at his apartments in the Imperial 
Winter Palace. We immediately recognised each other, as 
baring met often in Paris in the year ISIS, and having visited 
together the institutions of that capital, and the same pro- 
fessional friends. This circumstance served as a stronger 
incitement to the worthy Doctor, (who, though advanced in 
years, is yet full of mental vigour,) for arranging matters, 
so that I might satisfy my curiosity effectually, as well as 
speedily ; while to myself it was a reason for experiencing 
additional gratification. 

The Communautc des Demoiselles Nobles, or College, 
as I propose to call it for the sake of brevity, to which Dr. 
Rubl first introduced me, is situated at the extreme end 
of the city, not far from the Taurida Palace, and in a 
very airy and cheerful situation near the river. There 
are two distinct edifices belonging to this institution : an 
old one, which was formerly a convent of nuns called 
Smolrun Monastery in which the Empress Elizabeth, 
daughter of Peter the Great, proposed to lead a perfectly 
secluded life ; and a new one, which has a striking appear- 
ance, with a frontage of considerable dimensions towards 
a large open square, and is acknowledged to be a fine spe- 
eimen of modem architecture. It is sufiicient to state that 
the building was erected after the plan and elevation of 
Guarenghi, the most successful imitator of Palladio among 
the modem architects. The two buildings are connected 
by a covered corridor. 

The institution consists of two parts: one, in which 



about 400 young ladies of noUe families are educated, 
from which circumstance the institution takes its name; and 
another, which serves for the instruction of an equal num- 
ber of the daughters of bourgeois. The two are kept 
entirely distinct, but are placed under one general superin* 
tendenoe. The young ladies are admitted by ballot, ex- 
cept when the Empress-mother signifies her pleasure to 
have any particular person received for some importsnt 
reason, which is generally founded on considerations of 
philanthropy. Those belonging to the nobility reside nine, 
and the bourgeotMei six years in the establishment, where 
a system of education is pursued, which, after having been 
improved, from time to time, in proportion as knowledge 
expanded in Russia, has at last been brought to its pre- 
sent admirable state by the unceasing exertions of its Im- 
perial patroness. The pupils are taught the Russiso, 
Grerman, and French languages ; to which an idea is eater- 
tained of shortly adding the English also. Russian his- 
tory and literature, writing, arithmetic, and geometiji 
music, drawing, and embroidery, and lastly, those naturti 
and philosophical branches of science which are moct 
appropriate to the female sex, form the subjects of instruc- 
tion. The professors, who are not resident in the house, but 
attend on fixed days, are selected from among the most aUe 
teachers to be found in St. Fetersburgfa, and are rewarded 
with honours, at the Empress-mother's recommendatioo, 
in proportion to their zeal, besides having a competent 
pecuniary remuneration. Frofessor Herman is the pre* 
sent inspector-general of the studies, and is deservedly s 
favourite with the Empress. He is the inventor of a set of 
tables, which he calls SynchronUtiquesy for teaching geoenl 
history, and which have been adopted with success in this 
establishment, as well as in that of St. Catherine. He was 
obliging enough to accompany me on the present occa- 


sioD, as did also Madame D'Adleberg, the principal su- 
perintendent of this institution, an amiable and well in- 
formed lady, possessing the most polished manners, and 
Madame Cassel, the Inspectrice. From these persons I re- 
ceived all possible information, and. was conducted through 
every part of the house. The age at which the pupils are 
admitted is not fixed. I observed several who were little 
more than eight or nine years of age, and a few who were 
even younger. The nobles are divided into three classes, 
which are kept quite separate, both with regard to studies 
and recreation. The bourgeoises are in two divisions only. 
At the time of my visit, there were only 320 of the former, 
and 900 of the latter. These pay 600, and the former 
1100 roubles a-year. They are not allowed to quit the 
hoaae during the whole period of nine years, except when 
any of their relations happen to be seriously ill, and re^ 
quire their presence. They have large gardens for the 
summer on the banks of the river, and extensive covered 
corridors warmed for exercise in winter. Besides these, 
there is in each class a Salle de Ricreation, where, among 
other diversions, gymnastics have lately been introduced, 
and musical instruments are kept to add to their means 
of amusement The classes are distinguished by the 
colour of their robes, which are of the simplest, and 
yet most elegant form. The colours are white, blue, and 
brown. Each class has three divisions, through which 
the pupil is expected to pass in the course of three 
years. Examinations take place at stated periods, to 
ascertain the proficiency of the pupils; and a general 
public one is held every three years, before a numerous 
assembly of the officers of the State, the Diplomatic 
Carp$j honoured by the presence of the Empress-mother, 
and frequently by that of the rest of the Imperial family, 
and the high dignitaries of the Church. On this occa- 

Q 2 

ftSS C0MMUNAUT£ DES demoiselles N0BLE8. 

sion, such of the pupils as have completed their educa- 
tion, exhibit proofs of their various accomplishments, 
and receive their reward on leaving the institution. 
Madame D'Adleberg informed me that the young ladies 
seldom quit their companions, and the place where their 
faculties have expanded, and where they have spent yean 
of happiness, without keen regret and shedding tears. 
The examination takes place in a very magnificent hall, 
built by Guarenghi, of gigantic height and dimensions, 
and in most excellent taste. This apartment serves also 
for giving balls to the relations and friends of the pupils, 
and others of the nobility, two or three times in the 
year, when the young ladies, under the superintendence 
of Madame D'Adieberg and their assistants, are expected 
to do the honours of the house. In this same ruom, 
too, the parents of the young ladies are admitted to see 
them on a Sunday, under certain very judicious regula- 
tions, and the strictest surveillance. By these means, not 
only the intercourse between the pupils and the world is 
kept up, as well as with their relations, but their manners 
are formed, and the social habits befitting their sex and 
station, are imparted to them. Corporeal punishment does 
not enter into the system of discipline adopted in the college; 
but improper conduct is visited by a change of dress, and 
other humiliating circumstances. The reward given on 
leaving school to those who have, by their conduct and pro- 
ficiency in study, made themselves most conspicuous, and to 
which a higher degree of importance is attached, consists 
in the decoration of the cypher of the Empress-mother, in 
gold, which is worn ever after through life, as an acknow- 
ledged mark of distinction in society. 

I visited the class-rooms, and was present at the de- 
livery of the master^s lectures, which are given in one 
of the three languages already mentioned ; and I not only 



heard the pupils questioned on the various subjects of in- 
struction which I have enumerated ; but, at the request of 
Professor Herman, I interrogated them myself to some ex- 
tent, selecting a few young ladies without partiality. On 
these occasions, I found them not only ready in their an- 
swersy which they gave with equal facility in French, Ger- 
man, or Russian, but thoroughly grounded in the subject- 
matter of the examination, reasoning with simplicity and 
good sense upon it, and replying in explanation of their 
former answers, when objections had been purposely made 
to them, in order to try whether or not their information 
depended on mere memory, or was the result of actual 
knowledge. The classes are held in very large and lofty 
rooms, excellently ventilated, and well warmed. The 
pupils sit on raised benches, with a long narrow form be- 
fore them, and the professor, with his books and black 
board, for the demonstration of his lectures, is placed on a 
raised platform at the opposite end of the apartment. The 
d^rree of cleanliness observed in these rooms^ as well as in 
the wide and well-aired dormitories, and in' fact, in every 
part of the house, cannot be surpassed in the best regulated 
mansion of, a nobleman. During the hours of lecture, an 
inspectrice is invariably present, and assistant teachers, or 
governesses, attend the young ladies on every occasion, 
either of study or recreation, or when in the dormitories. 
At church, they are under their immediate inspection. It 
is needless to observe, that religious instruction forms a 
very prominent part of the system of education ; and it de- 
serves to be recorded, that the toleration in matters of re- 
ligion which distinguishes the Russian Government, is 
extended by the Imperial patroness of this College, and 
that of St. Catherine, to the pupils of different com- 
munions admitted in them, whether Roman Catholics or 
Protestants, without the least attempt being made to in- 


duce them to swerve from the persuasion of their parents 
throughout the period of their education. 

Nor are those important qualifications neglected in this 
institution, which relate to the knowledge of domestic af- 
fairs and the management of a household. On the oontrwy) 
at stated periods, and every day^ needle-work is taught 
and practised by all the young ladies, the eldest of whom 
attend to their own toilette unasasted ; and it is one of the 
duties of the inspectrice to see that a few of the more ad- 
vanced pupils become daily acquainted with the business 
of housekeeping, management of servants, and arraage- 
ment of the household for the whole establishment. The 
diet is nourishing and abundant. I examined each part 
of this branch of the dcMoaestic concerns, and was very 
much gratified with every thing I saw. The number <^ 
female servants that attend the young ladies is very coasi- 
derable. Some oS them sleep in the rooms immediately 
adjoining the dormitories, in order to be ready at the first 
call of the Lady-inspectress. Provisions, on a large and 
most admirable scale» are made for the treatment of such 
as fall ill. Fart of the general building is occupied by a 
sort of infirmary, consisting of several rooms in which 
the patients are kept, attended by the professional men 
belonging to the establishment. I visited both that of the 
demoiselks nobles and of the bourgeoisesy in each of which 
I found a few cases of slight indisposition well taken care 
of. They certainly could not have been more kindly 
nursed or treated at their own houses. It is a pity that 
the ill-sounding name of iMzaret should be given to this 
part of the institution, instead of the i&ore appeopriate and 
less alarming appellation of Maison de SantL 

Having passed, in the most gratifying manner iroaginsp 
ble, several hours in the examination of the entire estaUisb- 
ment; and the dinner of the pupils, which had been retarded 



in consequence, having at length been announced, I was in- 
Yited to pay them a vitdt in their dining-hall. This large 
and superb saloon, with a double colonnade of fluted Ionic 
columns, was filled with the young ladies, ranged on each 
side of several long rows of taUes, served as in the private 
houses of the wealthy. They wore the distinguishing 
coloured robes of their respective classes, and their hair was 
dressed in the most soignit manner imaginable. The sight 
they presented was altogether of the most interesting de- 
scription. On a 8%nal being given, the short hymn of grace 
was sung by a particular diyision of one of the classes, 
and responded in the same rich and varied tones by 
the whole society in chorus. The sounds that burst on my 
cars from these fair ranks of youth, beauty, health, and in- 
Dooence, appeared more than human, and filled my imagi- 
nation with a delight which a father alone can perhaps ex- 
perience. After having partaken of refreshments at a sepa- 
rate table witli her, I took a most affectionate leave of 
Madame D'Adleberg, with my sinoerest wish for the conti- 
Duation of her valuable and important life. Madame 
D^Adkberg is advanced in years, and of infirm health ; 
but she is supported in her trials and fatigues by the reflec- 
tion, that most of the young ladies of the first noble fami- 
lies of Ruaua bear her the sincerest affection for her kind 
exertions in forwarding the benevolent views of the Em- 
press in their behalf. 

I have more than once aUuded to anotbw establishment 
for the education of young ladies at St. Petersburgh, call- 
ed after the name of its founder. Institute of St. Catherine. 
This building is rituated on the Fontanka, not far from the 
Nevakoi Prospekt. It is of considerable extent, and pre- 
sents a grand facade of a modem and very pleasing struc- 
tore. The internal and general distribution is much the 
same as that adopted in all large edifices consecrated in this 


city, either to charitable purposes or to education. It 
consists of a ground-floor on a high basement, with a first 
and second story. The ascent is by a double and grand 
staircase, and a private one for the Empress-mother, who 
being the special protectress of this Institution, pays very 
frequent visits to it. The front part of this edifice is sepa- 
rated from the back by a corridor, which extends along 
the whole building, and is from forty to fifty feet wide. 
There is one on each floor^ and they are all kept ex- 
tremely clean and warm, so as to serve during the severe 
weather as promenades, or stand in lieu of play-grounds. 
On each side of these corridors, are the classes or school- 
rooms on the ground and first floors, and the donmtories 
on the second floor. The dining-room, the conference 
hall, the chapel, and the infirmary, or Maison de Santij 
together with the different offices, occupy the rest of the 
building. The class-rooms, as in the establishment just 
described, are very large, warmed thoroughly, it la RuiUf 
and perfectly ventilated : their internal distribution and sc- 
commodation for the pupils are exactly similar to those of the 
Institution before noticed. Of these class-rooms there are 
several. The dormitories are of great length and widdi. 
Each class has its dormitory, containing from thirty to 
forty beds. At one end there is a room for la Danu de 
Classe, at the other is the bed-room of one of the female 
servants. The beds are wide, and the bedsteads are of 
iron. A palliasse^ a hair-mattress, with sheets and a 
light covering, constitute the bedding. There is no occa- 
sion for warmer clothing on the bed at night, during 
the winter in Russia, than there is with us in summer; 
the heat of the stove lasting all night at a temperature 
seldom below sixty-four degrees of Fahrenheit. The great 
refector}^ is an immense hall with tables arranged round it> 


and two rows in the centre. Adjoining is the waiting- 
maidVroom, in which the victuals are raised from the 
kitchens below by a machine. There is, moreover, a very 
handsome and spacious hall, of a pleasing architecture, 
lighted by a cupola, round, and from the centre of which 
several ormolu chandeliers are suspended. The hall is 
tastefully decorated. This is the place in which the pa- 
rents of the pupils are admitted every Sunday to vi^t their 

There were in the school, at the time of our visit, three 
hundred and ten young ladies, and all must be of noble blood 
to be admitted ; that is to say, they must belong to one of 
the classes of nobility mentioned in an early chapter of the 
present division of my work. Out of the above number, 
sixty or thereabouts are free scholars, the Government 
paying for their education. It is the Empress-mother that 
nominates ta these places, and it is she also who, with the as- 
siduity of a parent, wiatches over the establishment. The 
remainder of the pupils pay 900 roubles a-year in advance, 
for which sum (41/. 5$.) they receive every possible 
instruction calculated to constitute a solid and proper edu- 
cation for a young lady ; are boarded^ lodged, clothed, and 
washed; besides being taught the more ornamental ac- 
complishments of drawing, dancing, and singing. Instru- 
mental music is not included, for the masters of which 
a separate charge is made. 

Their diet is nourishing and abundant. White bread 
and milk in the morning : soup, or stchy, a dish of some 
kind of animal food, a pudding, quass and bread, ad libitum, 
for dinner : at five, a little plain bread : and at supper, ano- 
ther dish with some vegetables. 

Their dress, like that of the young ladies of the esta- 
blishment before-mentioned, is made of English stuff, which 


18 permitted to be imported duty free, at the interoesiioD of 
the Empress-mother, who selected it on account of its du- 
rability, and becoming appearance, as well as the penna- 
nence of the colours. This consists in a gown, without 
any separate corset, the bones being placed in the gown 
itself, and very thin, a sort of apron of fine linen, with a 
stomacher meeting behind, kH^ washed-leather gloves, fas- 
tened to the short sleeves on public occasions, or white 
manchettes on ordinary days. I have been thus particulsr, 
both in regard to their diet and dress, because I had heard 
it stated by some, that the former was scanty and of in- 
ferior quality, and the latter stiff and hurtful to the coo- 
stitution, in consequence of its being made too tight, in 
order to give to the figure that peculiarly handflome 
ioumnre which I observed in all of them. A physician and 
a father had a sort of claim to do so, even if the condescen- 
sion of the Imperial Patroness of the Institution bad not 
afforded him the right to make such inquiries ; I therefore 
examined both the latter objects with particular attention, 
and acquired ocular conviction that, whatever may have 
been the defects which formerly existed on these two pointy 
they certainly do not prevail at present, nor have prevaikdi 
as I ^as informed by impartial and competent judges, ftr 
some years past. To a medical man, every inquiry into sub- 
jects connected with the physical education of children, is full 
of interest, and to myself in particular, who, from pecuhsr 
circumstances, have for many years attended to that branch 
of the Aiedical profession. The department of provisions, 
&c., is under the sole direction of an JBconoiTte, who constantly 
resides in the house. He is allowed by the treasurer only 
forty kopeeks a-day for each pupil, to supply them with every 
necessary of life, and yet this is done, and what is pro- 
vided is of the best quality, it being subject to the previous 
supervision of the directress and the physician. Indeed, 


the excellent looks of the young ladies bespeak the good- 
ness as well as sufficiency of their diet. 

The girls are admitted from the age of six years and 
upwards, and are kept till they are eighteen. Emulation 
is the principle on which their education has been grounded, 
without many punishments, and none of them of a ccM^real 
nature. This same system is followed in the Cammunaute 
des Demmselles NobleSy and the reward of the Empress's cy« 
pher, or of gold and silver medals, given in that, is also 
conferred in this academical Institution. I have been 
assured by several mothers of girls who had been educated 
at these establishments, (for one meets them now in almost 
every house of importance in St. Petersburgh, and I un- 
derstand throughout Russia,) that the results of such a 
system are highly satisfactory. 

The pupils are divided into two classes : the one com- 
prising the juni<»', the other the senior part. Each class 
has three subdivisions, regulated by capability and talent, 
and not by seniority. They are instructed in their own, 
die Grerman, and the French languages, grammatically, 
and by the best masters. They are also taught composi- 
tion, national and general history, geography, and the 
lighter branches of mathematics, with elementary prin- 
ciples of natural philosophy, and chemistry, illustrated by 
experiments ; for which purpose, cabinets, as in the case of 
the College of the Demoiselles Nobles, are kept in the 
Institution, with proper instruments and collections, which 
are generally presents from the Empress-mother. They 
are all, moreover, equally instructed in embroidery, in 
which they certainly excel, in making carpet-work and 
artificial flowers, so as completely to occupy thdir time : 
and all the senior pupils, in their turn, have days allotted 
for entering^ into the details of housekeeping. 

The two classes are distinguished by the colour of their 


dress; that of the janior being green, and puce that 
of the senior. The latter wear their hair full-dressed, 
and this they are obliged themselves to attend to every 

They rise at six o'clock, both winter and summer, and 
an hour and a half is allowed for the toilette. Prayers 
are then read, followed by the breakfast. Between eight and 
nine they practise music, or write exercises and themes for 
the school. From nine till twelve the different masters lec- 
ture in the class-room. A Datne de Cltzsse is always pre- 
sent, and there are, moreover, inspecting ladies, who go 
from one class-room to another at all hours. The greatest 
order and silence prevail. The Superieurey Madame 
Krempien, a German lady by birth, is much esteemed in 
the establishment, and the young ladies are said to quit 
it with regret, principally on her account. The second 
directress is Mademoiselle Levitsky, a highly bred and 
well accomplished lady, of the most amiable and engaging 
manners, speaking both French and English with accuracy 
and fluency. She is very well known to several families 
of distinction in this country, where she resided some time. 
It was to her kindness that I stood principally indebted 
for the information I obtained in every part of this esta- 
blishment, as I went round with her and one or two of 
the officers of the institution. 

At twelve o^clock the pupils walk in procession to the 
refectory, where the same ceremony takes place which has 
been described in regard to the Demoiselles Nobles. From 
dinner-time until two o^clock, is devoted to recreation: 
if the season and weather permit it, they walk in a large 
and well wooded pleasure-ground ; or in the different 
corridors and salles de recreation^ if the weather and sea- 
son are unfavourable. From two till five o^clock, other mas* 
ters ; from five till seven, recreation or repetition of lessons; 
and three days in the week, dancing, vocal and instrumental 


music. The more domestic accomplishments also are ac- 
quired during these hours. At eight o'clock, supper. From 
eight till nine, prayers and toilette ; and by ten they retire 
to rest. The attendance on the three hundred and ten 
young ladies is performed by fifty-five waiting-maids. 

There is a very large and well-regulated infirmary, or 
Motion de SantCy called Lazaret, for the indisposed, twenty- 
six of whom were in that building when I visited it. The 
result of my professional inquiries into the diseases in this 
and in the former establishment, and into the phenomena 
which attend the development of the constitution at the 
age during which the young ladies reside in the establish- 
ments, I am not called upon, by the natui-e of my present 
publication, to communicate to my readers, who, I dare 
say, would wish to have as little physic as possible. But 
I am free to confess, that I did not obtain all the informa- 
ti(Hi on such important subjects which I was anxious to 
procure, owing to the want of particular registers, which 
alone can supply, after a series of years, useful, medical, and 
statistical information. A report, however, from the physi- 
cian in ordinary and inspector, is daily made to the Empress- 
mother, who never fails to examine it, and frequently makes 
very apt observations on the prevalence of particular dis- 
orders, the names of which are always inserted in Russian 
in the report. 

The funds for the necessary expenses of this establish- 
ment are supplied out of those of the Order of Knighthood 
of St. Catherine, established by the Empress Catherine, 
and held in high estimation in Russia. The funds of 
the establishment, or the College of the Demoiselles 
NoUes and Bourgeoises, are laid out in debentures at 
the Lombard, and the expenses for its support amount to 
the annual sum of 160,000 roubles, (7,250/. sterling). 

St. Petersburgh possesses only one really public library, 
which is situated in the Nevskoi' Prospekt, not far from the 


Russian Baeaar, or Gostinoi Dvor, in a tolerably fine 
building, but left incomplete. This structure was begun by ^ 
Catherine, after she had obtained possession, at the parti- 
tion of Poland, of a collection of books, which she re- 
moved from Warsaw, .to which capital it belonged. That 
library had been originally formed by the family of the 
Counts Zaulotsky, by whom it was bequeathed to the State. 
After their death, it received no addition from the Polidi 
Government, so that most of tlie important works pub- 
lished since 1770 are altogether wanting. As the Counts 
Zaulotsky were in the Church, the largest part of their li- 
brary was that which refers to theological and ascetic 
works. It occupies, in the present edifice, the whole of the 
upper galleries, which sre very extensive. The Imperial 
Library, in its present state, was only made public in 
1814, by the late Emperor ; who could not fail to remark, 
while abroad, the many advantages arising to the people 
from such establishments. 

The Library is open to the public, without any distinc- 
tion, on Tuesdays, from eleven till three o'clock ; and every 
Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, from ten in the morn- 
ing till nine in the evening in the summer, and till sunset in 
the winter. Every visitor must first get a billet d^entree from 
one of the librarians, in the ante-room on the ground floor, 
who inscribes the name of such visitor in a register. Any 
number of books may be obtained, particularly works of re- 
ference, which are taken into the reading-room, on the same 
floor. This apartment is large, and its arched roof is ^p- 
ported by pilasters. Beyond it are two smaller rooms^ con- 
taining all the Russian works published from the earliest pe- 
riod of Russian typography, on subjects of every description, 
to the number of 15,000. The librarian who has in charge 
the National Department of the Public Library, is Mr* 
Eriloff, to whom I was introduced on the present occasion. 


He 18 a stout person, of pleasant manners, inth mach sim- 
plicity, and little vanity. His Fables, of which a very recent 
edition bad just been published, — one of the most splendid 
apedmens of typography I have ever witnessed—are as fa- 
miliaiiy known abroad as they are in Russia. He is 
justly surnamed the Russian La Fontaine. From him I 
obtained some curious information respecting Russian 

On the left of the vestibule, opposite the reading-room, 
is another large apartment, with several cases around it, as 
well as in the middle of it, containing only MSS. Some of 
them are very valuable, particularly an extensive collection 
in the Chinese language, in excellent preservation, and a 
second collection of autograph letters, state-papers, reports, 
and memoranda of different Sovereigns, ministers. Kings* 
taiistresses^ and generals of all nations, formed by the late 
M. Doubrowsky. The autographs are neatly bound in silk 
tissue, and each volume is placed in a red morocco case, 
bearing on the outside a list of the contents. I selected 
a few for more particular examination, which appeared to 
me in€>st interesting ; such as the private and public letters 
written by Henry VII. of England, and many of Henry 
VIII. ; together with several of Queen Elizabeth, all 
written in her own handwriting, in French, and in large 
and very legible characters, by the form of which, as well 
as by the idioms employed, I should conjecture that her 
master of that language was an Italian, and probably a 
Piedmontese. Now and then, one meets with evidence of 
her pedantry in employing the Greek $ for all those words 
which are of Greek origin ; such as metamor^sis, which is 
found more than once in her letters. One of the letters of 
the Virgin Queen is addressed to Catherine de Medicis, 
respecting Mary Stuart, of whom there is also a large col- 
lection of private letters. 



In one of the volumes of MSS. just described, there is a 
curious fragment of calo-pedi-graphy, by Louis XIV. the 
genuineness of which is rendered unquestionable, not only 
by internal evidence, but by the attestation in writing of 
the Archiviste. This fragment proves that the Grand 
Monarque had been early taught those sentiments of ab- 
solutism on which he acted ever after. The moral con-- 
tained in the copy set before the infant King, to teach him 
to write by, consisting of the following lines, with their bad 
spelling, may have influenced, for aught we know, the 
character of that Sovereign : 

L'hommage est deut auz R07B, 
lis font ce qu'il leur plaist.*' 

This copy is repeated several times in a large band, writ- 
ten by Louis, whose name is affixed to it eight successive 

The very interesting and in some respects valuable 00- 
lection of letters and documents to which I allude, was 
formed by M. Doubrowsky, who was attached to the 
Russian Embassy at Paris, at the commencement of the 
Revolution. Profiting by the spirit of destruction which 
instigated the ringleaders of those turbulent times to an- 
nihilate every record and archive of the aristocracy of the 
country, he succeeded in securing a great number of pa- 
pers that had been sold in retail by the Government to 
shopkeepers, from whom M. Doubrowsky purchased them 
for a trifle. The library of St. Germain alone contained up^ 
wards of 80,000 MSS., which the barbarians committed 
to the flames. Monsieur Doubrowsky succeeded in saving 
some of the most curious amongst them, of which number 
was the Epistle of St. Paul, in Greek and Latin, well 
known to bibliomanes, and for which it is said that an 
English amateur offered two thousand guineas without 


success. The late Emperor, who was ever on the alert to 
increase the value of his institutions, bought the collection 
from Monsieur Doubrowsky, and also added the library of 
the late Count Viasmitino£P, Minister of Police. Among 
the general MSS., there are some of the Russian poets. 
A date is shown on which Deijavine traced some verses 
immediately before his death ; and the copy of the tragedy 
of Polyxena, written entirely in the handwriting of Oze- 
ro^T, the first dramatic poet of Russia. 

From the ground-floor, a narrow staircase leads to a 
rotunda ou the principal story, with a large and two smaller 
rooms on each side of it Around the rotunda runs a 
double gallery, intended to facilitate the access to the 
books: this part contains the works on exact sciences. 
In the centre are placed, on a handsome table^ the original 
regulations of this establishment, kept in a tasteful casket, 
surmounted by the Russian Eagle wrought in gold. The 
larger rooms, to the right and to the left of the rotunda, 
have a double row of Corinthian columns, placed in pairs, 
extending the whole length of the room, at about fifteen feet 
from the windows, intended to support a broad gallery. Con- 
taining all the works on theology, which the original propri- 
etors, the Counts Zaulotsky, who were in the church, had 
been at considerable pains to collect. Under the gallery I 
found works on history, antiquity, and geography, in the 
left room ; and in the right, those on the liberal arts, mecha- 
nics, and poetry.^ The two smaller cabinets adjoining the 
former room, contain books on philosophy, jurisprudence, 
classics, and French publications ; while in the two similar 
calnnets adjoining the latter room, are contained philological 
and miscellaneous works, and the editions of the fifteenth 

The entire collection of books in this library amounts to 
about 850,000 volumes. At present there are no funds 



allotted for increasing it ; but it was the intention of the 
late Emperor to create one for that purpose. All Uie" 
old revolutionary, and most oi the modem political works, 
are excluded. In regard to religious works the thing is 
quite different, and the greatest latitude is allowed for the 
admisaon of books upon every creed. Before the Em- 
peror Alexander made this library public, there was actu* 
ally no National Establishment of the kind in St. Peters- 
burgh ; for although the Academy of Sciences has a very 
extensive and valuable library^ and, as we have seen, a 
larger and more choice collection of books is to be found at 
the Hermitage ; yet these could no more be considered in the 
light of public libraries than those belonging to the convent 
of. St. Alexander Nevskoi, to the Land Cadet Corps, to 
the Mine Corps, or to private individuals, however liberally 
the latter may have acted in permitting the studious to 
have access to their collections. 

As yet, the attendance of the public to the library is not 
very numerous, seldom exceeding a hundred, or a hundred 
and twenty in a week, notwithstanding the many faci- 
lities afforded them ; but the Institution is too much in 
its infant state to expect more, and will admit of consi- 
derable improvements. The mode in which the books are 
classed is advantageous; but neither their arrangement 
nor the binding is worthy of an Imperial Library, or of 
such a magnificent City as St. Fetersburgh. I have rea- 
son, however, to know that it is the intention of the 
veigning Emperor to enlarge and embellish this Establish- 
ment, as part of a vast project of improvements in this 
part of the town, which has been confided to the eminent 
architect, Monsieur Rossi. 

The attendants on the librarians and the readers, )^bo 
fetch and return the books, are veteran soldiers, dressed in 
their military capotes and caps, and wearing swords. In 


St Petersburgh, the sight of soldiers in the service of the 
IVfuseSyis not uncommon, though it would create some sur- 
prise in other capitals. But the intention is a praiseworthy 
cme. In all the public establishments connected with Gro- 
vemment which I have seen, veteran soldiers are employed, 
instead of messengers or livery-servants. By these means a 
saving is effected to the State, — a number of those men-* 
torious people are rewarded, — and the institutions them- 
selvefl derive the advantage of services, performed in general 
with more fidelity and subordination. A partial arrange- 
ment of the same kind obtains in Prussia and France. 

The books have been classed, and a catalogue made of 
them, in a systematic order, after a plan of the ehlightened 
directcH" of the library, Mons. d^Olenine, of whom I have 
had occasion to speak in another part of this work. 

The press in Russia, as' in most parts of the Continent, is 
subject to a Board of CensCire. This, however, does not seem 
to have impeded the publication of a considerable number 
of works in modem times, both original and translated, one 
copy of each of which must be deposited at the Academy 
of Sciences, to be added to the library. That men of let- 
ters have received great encouragement from the present 
Emperor, I have adduced strong proofs, particularly in 
rdating bis munificent gift to the celebrated historian, Ka- 
ramsiii, and his widow. Many other instances in support 
ci the assertion have been reported to me, and many more 
such I have seen recorded in the public papers : but I 
shall only add the names of two other literary characters 
who have partaken of their Sovereign's bounty and encou- 
ngement^ in the way most substantially useful to them, in 
corroboration of what I have advanced. These are Gnie- 
ditch, who has lately completed a translation of the Iliad 
into Russian hexameters, of which report speaks very 
favourably ; and the blind poet Eosloff, who, besides several 



original poems, has translated into the Russian language 
some of Lord Byron^s most esteemed compositions. To 
the former his Majesty has granted a pension of 8000 
roubles (132/. lOs.) a-year, and to the latter one of 2000 
roubles (88/.). 

Russian literature, since the appearance of its refonner 
and most brilliant star, Lomonossoff, has been rapidly im- 
proving in all its branches. In the severer style of prose, 
the death of Kararasin, which took place on the 8d of 
June, at the Taurida Palace, has left a chasm which will 
not readily be filled up. Earamsin is unquestionably the 
greatest historian that the Russians possess, and his name 
will rank deservedly high among historical writers of modern 
times. He died at the early age of forty-nine, of a com- 
plaint in the chest. A contemporary of Karamsin, Mura- 
viev, who was tutor to Alexander, excelled in historical 
and epistolary literature: he followed the footsteps of 
Lomonossoff, and formed his style by the study of the 
Slavonic language. The writers on the belles-lettres, since 
the beginning of the present century, have made advances 
in correctness of style and purity of diction, which have 
rendered the study of the Russian language an almost fash- 
ionable attainment. 

It is in poetry, however, that the modem Russians have 
made more rapid progress, especially in the lyric depart- 
ment. The name of Alexander Pouschkine, the Byron 
of Russia, is probably famiUar to most English readers. He 
made his debut when only fourteen years of age, being 
then a student at the Imperial Lyceum ; and at the age 
of nineteen he composed the celebrated poem of Boualan 
and Ludmilla, superior for beauty to any thing that had 
been before published in Russia. He has since produced 
several other works, although not yet in the twenty-ninth 
year of his age. My literary readers are doubtlessly ac' 


quainted with the temporary displeasure which this youth- 
ful and ardent lyrical poet excited in the highest quarter, 
prerious to the accession of Nicholas, by his " Ode to 
Liberty." The Russians are indebted to him for a transla- 
tion of Shakspeare^s King Lear. 

The fabulists of merit have been numerous in Russia. 
SoumarokofiP, who also wrote some indifferent tragedies, was 
the first to introduce that species of poetry. His fables, 
however, are rather imitations, or translations of foreign 
works. He was succeeded by Khemnitzer, who died in 
1784, and whose life has been written in a strain, I am told, 
of creditable eloquence by the President d'Olenine, who 
aflbrded me, in conversation, the greater part of the infor- 
mation upon my present subject. The great features of 
Kbemnitzer's character was an amiable disposition and ab- 
straction, that of his work nat't^e^e, which some have affected 
to regard as commonplace. In this career of practical 
writing, four competitors have appeared about the same 
time, who seem to dispute with him the palm of pre- 
eminence. Dmitrieff and Kriloff, the first rank, Izma'iloff 
and B. Pouschkine, in the second. The productions of the 
former are considered as masterpieces of elegance and sim- 
plicity ; but he is not original, having borrowed most of 
his ideas from foreign writers. Kriloff has more merit in 
this respect. He is equally powerful and original. His 
Fables are considered as the most complete work of the 
Russian Parnassus. They form a distinct epoch in Rus- 
siaii poetry, to which they have secured the claim of origi- 
nality in this department. The public in Russia has 
taken more interest in such compositions since their ap- 
pearance, than had been excited by any other similar pub« 

The romantic school, which has endeavoured to spread its 
dominions in all the most civilized parts of Europe within the 


last twenty years, boasts of a few distinguished writen 
even in Russia. Eugene Baratinsky is one of the most 
eminent among them. He is not totally free from the ac- 
cusation of too closely imitating Alexander Pouschkine; 
but his forte is elegy ; his style being more pathetic than 
that of the youthful poet. Eda, a Finlandish Tale, in 
verse, by Baratinsky, is a work of great merit. This de^ 
ecriptive poem was published the year before my visit to 
St. Petersburgh. At the head of this school must be 
placed M. Joukovsky, whom I have had occasion to men- 
tion on two former occasions, and whom I found in the 
enjoyment of very high reputation as a lyric and dramatic 
poet, and a writer of polite literature of the greatest merit 
He began to publish his works in 1805, from which time 
sprang that taste for the romantic, which is daily making 
rapid progress. His ^' Svetlana" is said to be a very beau* 
tiful ballad. In his delineations of the passions he is ac- 
cused of weakness, although great merit is allowed him for 
his descriptions ; his endeavours to add strength to his 
style have often rendered him obscure and unintelligible. 

Among the more modem living poets, the fair sex boasts 
of Mademoiselle Zenai'de Volkonsky, who published an Ode 
to the Memory of the late Emperor, said to be of great 

In dramatic literature, very little originality, and many 
indifferent imitations or translations exist at present ; yet 
there are some authors of merit even in this department. 
Prince Chakhovsky, whose mook-*heroic poem, entitled the 
^* Theft of the Pelisses," probably suggested by Tas$oni'8 
Secchia Rapita, has been considered lively and well written, 
claims the united titles of a prolific Vaudeville and comedy 
writer, and of a fertile and elevated tragedian. His pro- 
ductions in both these departments are said to be very nu- 
merous. Zagoskine is another modern dramatic author of 


great power and originality of humour. Of translators 
from the French Repertoire, the number is considerable ; 
but the most able amongst them are Labanov, Gnieditch, 
Gendre, Katenine, and Prince Chakhovsky himself. 

It may be stated, in conclusion, that in literature, the 
Russians have made more rapid progress within the last 
fifty years, than in the other branches of knowledge which 
they, however, cultivate with 'no small degree of ardour. 
According to M. Sopikoff, who published an Essay on 
Russian Bibliography, in five volumes, it appears, that aU 
though the art of printing was introduced in Russia one 
hundred and fifteen years after, its invention, and eighty 
years after its introduction by Caxton in England, not 
fewer thJm 80,000 volumes, in the Slavonic Russian lan- 
guages, have been published between 1551 and 1813; and 
firom the information I obtained at the difierent booksellers 
at St. Petersburgh, as well as from an examination of cata- 
logues of works printed since, the last mentioned period, that 
number may be looked upon as having been nearly dou- 
bled since. In point of typography, St. Petersburgh has 
no reason to envy other nations. The printers in that city 
produce works executed in a much superior style to the 
Germans, equally as good as the French, and only inferior, 
as are all other nations, except the Italians, to the English. 

Periodical literature, including newspapers, cannot be 
said to have flourished at any period in St Petersburgh. 
Some exceptions ought perhaps to be made in favour of the 
present time, when a few really excellent publications of 
tbat kind are conducted with great spirit, and are, I un- 
derstood, greatly encouraged by the superior and middle 
classes of society. Although it is not my intention to enu- 
merate the writers who have distinguished themselves in 
this branch of literature, I cannot omit stating, that M. 
Greitsch, one of the Imperial liibrarians, of whose Russian 


Grammar I have already made honourable mention, is the 
editor of one of the most reputed journals published in 
Russia, and well known in other parts of Europe. H> 
Boulgarine, his ex-editor, whom I had the pleasure of know- 
ing at St. Petersburgh, is tlie author of a series of papers 
in the manner of the Spectator^ which have met with the 
greatest success, and have been since collected in two vo- 
lumes, handsomely printed, and embellished with some 
highly finished engravings by Russian artists. This gifted 
and pleasing writer is now engaged in a work, entitled The 
Russian Gil Blasy intended to punt the manners and cus- 
toms of the different classes of society in the capital and 
the provinces. For the following list of the periodicals now 
published in St. Petersburgh and at Moscow, I am in- 
debted to Count Laval, who is himself the responsible 
director of one of the official papers published at the De- 
partment for Foreign Affairs, and it may, therefore, be re- 
lied upon as correct. It does not^ indeed, present such a 
display of political and literary information as a list pub- 
lished in the British capital would exhibit ; but neither is 
it so totally devoid of interest, or so insignificant, as some 
recent travellers have pretended. 

1. Journal de St. Petersbourghy Politique et Litteraire,in 
French ; official. Published every Tuesday, Thursday, and 
Saturday. This paper, written in the purest French, fre- 
quently contains articles of great interest on literature, the 
fine arts, and some judicious remarks on theatricals. 

2. The Invalid. — ^A military journal, in which are insert- 
ed all military promotions, as well as the civil preferments 
of importance. It is published daily in Russian ; and the 
profits arising out of it are given in aid of the funds of the 
Institution for Invalid Soldiers. 

3. Gazette of St. Petersburgh, in Russian, published 
under the auspices of the Imperial Academy of Sciences, re- 


sembles the Moniteur. It is also published in the German 
language, and appears twice a week. 

4. Gazette of the Senate.^^In Russian, once a week; it 
publislies the Ukases of the Senate. 

5. Journal of Commerce, — In Russian and German, 
three times a week. 

6. The Northern Bee. — A Uterary and political journal, 
published three times a week. This is the journal edited 
by Messrs. Greitsch and Boulgarine, as already stated, 
and is a very interesting and well conducted paper. 

7. The Patriot. — In Russian, political and literary, twice 
a month. 

8. Archives of the North.^-^In Russian, political, histo- 
rical, and statistical, twice a month. 

9> The Slavonian. "^"Erery fortnight, in Russian, lite^ 
raiy «>d military. 

10. National Miscellany, or Remarkable Affairs of Rus- 
sia. An historical, literary, and statistical journal, in 
Russian, monthly. 

11. Register of Discoveries in Natural History, Phy- 
sics, and Chemistry. 

IS. Journal of Manufactures and Commerce^ published 
monthly, under the auspices of Mons. Cancrin, the Minis- 
ter of Finance ; containing an account of all discoyeries and 
observations, laws and regulations, relative to the different 
branches of national industry. 

IS. Gazette of Commercey which appears twice a week, 
in Russian and German, and contains many important 
returns and official documents, relative to the internal and 
external commerce of Russia, of which I have materially 
availed myself in that part of my work which treats of 
those subjects. 

14. Journal of the Mining Corps. 15. Journal of the 
Minister of Public Instruction. 16. Journal des Voies et 


Communications, These tliree journals often contain very 
interesting memoirs and official documents on the various 
branches of publie administration in the country. The 
two first are published in Rus»an, the Litter in Russian 
and French. They ate published monthly. 
The periodical publications at Moscow are — 
1. The Moscow Gazette f in Russian. S. The Moscow 
Courier^ of which the celebrated poet Pouschkine is one of 
the editors. 3. The Moscow Telegraph. 4. The Courier 
of Europe, 6. The Journal of Agriculture. This is a 
valuable publication, and said to be of the greatest utility 
to the agricultural classes of society. It appears quarterly. 
6. Journal of Physics, monihly, 7. Journal of Fashions, 
8. The Racing Calendar. All the Moscow periodicals are 
written in the Russian language.* 

* Since my return to England, I have been informed^ that no 
sooner had I turned my bock upon St. Petersburgh, Uian au attack 
upon me appeared in one of the above puUicatlons, from the pen of a 
medical writer. This is much in the old way ; we of the genus tm- 
tabile medicarum cannot live with each other in peace— each in our own 
sphere of usefulness ; and I am not surprised that the same spirit of 
rancour obtains near the North Pole^ which is so prevalent ftftber 
South. I regret that I cotdd not ascertain the ground of the attack ; 
although I learned enough to be able to point my finger to the author 
of it. . If the individual in question has abused me in my capacity of 
physician, I can heartily foigive him, for all his strictures must be 
harmless : if as a public lecturer on the subject of mummies and em- 
balming, I give him joy for being single-handed in his censure, amid 
the concurrent testimonies of flattering approbation of my researdies 
which the press of every country, even of Ruasia,f has conveyed to 
me. I know, and many others know also, that the individual in ques- 
tion is neither the best nor the warmest admirer of sdence ; and that 
in affording him an opportunity of seeing, at my public lecture, the 
most perfect specimens of Egyptian embalming yet known, and of 
learning, for the first time in his life, the process by which that opera- 
tion must have been performed in ancient times, was casting* in fiwt, 
*' pearls before swine." 

t See Journal dc St. Petersbourg, No. 141, for 1827. 




PRACTICE OF Medicine. — Medicines and Medical Supplies.— •Prin* 
ctpel'PhyBidaiis and Suigeons in St. Petenburgh.— All^;ed defi- 
ciency of very distinguished men. — Domestic Physicians. — Police 
of the Medical Profession. —Easy remedy to extirpate quacks. — 
R^ulations resj^ectlng pharmaciens, — Esprit de Corps of the Me- 
dical Profession in St. Petersburgh. »- Mode of remunerating Phy- 
sicians. — PapUHanage of the higher classes of Society. — Serious 
eomiilaajits against them. — New plan for remunerating the Me- 
dical Profession. — Imperial distinctions and rewards. — The Imt 
psrialMedico-Chikurgical Academy. — DiJBtribution of Studies. 
— Medical and other Classes. — The Library. — The Pedestrie^ or 
General Military Hospital. — Clinical Establishments for Medical, 
Sui^cal, and Ophthalmological practice. — Deficiencies. — Natal 
Hospitals. —Regimental Hospitals. — Hospitals of the 
Guards. — The Great Artillery Hospital. — Russian Surgery. 
— Dr. Arendt. — Unusual success in Surgical Operations. — The 
Civil Hospitals. — Arouchofp. — Physic by the dozen. — Lunatic 
Asylum. — Insane people scarce in St. Petersburgh. — Ivanoff. — 
Kalinkin. — BooADELNA, and the Centenarians. — Imperial Hos- 
pital FOR the Poor. — The Building. — Internal arrangement and 
distribution of patients. — Results. — Philanthropy of the Empress- 
mother.— '^'Enfans Trouvbs." — Maison d' Accouchement. -* 
Masked Ladies. -^ Imperial Lying-in Institution. — Vaccination. — 
Dispensary for diseases of the Eyes. — Manufactory of Surgical 

At the sight of the title of the present chapter some of 
my readers will be inclined to say^ ^* Oh the Doctor is now 


more at home, and he will give us a full dose of talk and 
technical dissertation.^ To all such I would lecommend 
passing over the next twenty pages. For although it is 
not my present object to enter into a complete profesaonal 
statement of the highly important subjects of which I dall 
treat ; still, unless the contemplation of those asylums, which 
the hand of philanthropy, or the wisdom of Gk>vemmeDt 
has reared in behalf of the ^^ sick and lame," and the con. 
sideration of what human art and talent endeavour to 
effect in a large and populous city towards alleviating the 
keenfest of all worldly afflictions, the loss of health, can 
afford pleasure or satisfaction ; the perusal of that number 
of pages will, I fear, prove even more irksome than that 
of both volumes of my work. 

In treating of the existing, state of the practice of medi- 
cine in St. Petersburgh, I must be considered as taking up 
the question en masse, without reference to private indi- 
viduals, or to any particular establishment. During my 
stay in that city, short as the time was, my attention was 
necessarily directed to a subject which forms so essential 
a part of my avocations ; and no day passed in which I 
did not make some inquiry, or obtain some degree of infor- 
mation respecting it. The acquiuntance which I had the 
good fortune of forming with the principal physicians and 
surgeons engaged in public as well as private practice, the 
minute examination of every civil and military hospital, 
facilitated by the most obliging condescension, the oppor- 
tunities of seeing a number of cases of disease in all its 
forms, and among every class of society, treated either at 
home, or at public institutions, and finally, a certain num- 
ber of consultations to which I was called, have afforded 
me sufficient means of acquiring that competent degree of 
knowledge which entitles me to make the observations con- 
tained in the present chapter. Nor was the vox p<^fulij or 


public report, altogether disregarded, in forming an esti- 
mate of the practice of medicine ; (although ^* all its re- 
ports go not with honest truth," as we know full well even 
in this largest of cities ;) but was, on the contrary, attended 
to in some degree, and made subservient to the drawing of 
what I hope are right conclusions. 

Conndered then en masses the practice of medicine, or 
the manner of treating disease in St. Petersburgh, appeared 
to me to differ from that of Germany, France, Italy, and 
still more from that of this country. It is not so experi* 
mental as that of the Grerman physicians'; it is more expec- 
tant than that of the French ; less bold and philosophical 
than that of the northern Italians; and not quite so effectual 
and successful as that of the English. It is founded on 
certain peculiar views and principles, which have in a great 
measure become obsolete every where else. It presupposes 
a previous positive knowledge of certain functions of the 
animal system, which in reality escape our attention. It 
draws, therefore, conclusions which are often dependent 
on erroneous premises. Thus, for instance, in a case of 
brain fever, which attacked a lady of rank, and which, 
as may be supposed, threatened her existence, the physi- 
cian who was sent for, and who enjoys a high reputation, 
insisted upon waiting for the turn of the attack, (crisis,) 
before he would prescribe any thing beyond the most 
trifling medicine, because he was persuaded that the com- 
plaint was only a salutary effort of nature, with which it 
would be wrong to interfere. In a second case where a 
rheumatic affection stiffened and made painful every limb 
of a lady, several weeks after her confinement, it was 
asserted that the disorder arose from lait repandu; al- 
though the patient had never nursed, aiid had never had 
any lait at all. As in the former instance, the conclusion 
of the phydcan respecting the supposed character of the 


disease, had led him to remain a quiet spectator of nature ; 
8o in the latter case the opinion formed by the medicd 
attendant of the nature of the complaint induced him to 
be very active ; but active in the wrong direction, namely 
in endeavouring to draw the supposed lait repandu to one 
centre, or, in other words, in attempting to create a milky 
secretion where there was none, in which of course he was 
unsuccessful. These cases fell under my own notice. 
I might adduce several others. 

The medical practitioners in St. -Petersburgh also differ 
from their brethren in other countries in regard to thar 
nomenclature of diseases, (ftosology.) In some respects 
they have adopted that of Pinel. They admit a variety of 
fevers as diseases of a peculiar kind, which in other coun- 
tries are considered only as symptoms. The result of which 
is, that symptoms and not the real disease are treated 
They acknowledge too the existence of a ,fiSvre ataxique^ 
(putrid fever) for example, not from foul stomach, con- 
gested liver, or unrelieved bowels ; but from vitiated hu- 
mours circulating through the body. Hence the treatment 
is entirely directed to the purification of such humours, and 
the other three indications are either overlooked, or con- 
sidered as of secondary importance. From what I ob- 
served in hospitals, as well as in private practice, there is 
no great disposition to admit the immediate existence of 
active iuflammation, and bleeding is, therefore, seldom re- 
sorted to at the onset of a disefue. In visiting one of the 
Hospitals with Dr. Ruhl one day, we observed a young, 
woman whose face was flushed and swollen, whose lips were 
blue and whose respiration was short and difficult. I felt her 
pulse ; she was feverisli ; I made her draw in her breath ; 
she could not do so without pain. She was labouring under 
inflammation of the chest. She had been three days in bed ; 
no blood had been taken from her. Dr. Ruhl readily agreed 
with me that the physician ought to bleed the patient, and 


being the superior officer, recommended it to be done while 
we visited the other parts of the establishment. We return- 
ed in an hour or so ; the operation had been performed, the 
countenance of the young woman showed with what success ; 
her attempt [at taking a deep inspiration, with scarcely any 
pain, confirmed our conjecture respecting the improvement 
which had taken place since our former visit. The pro- 
priety of bleeding her had not, indeed, escaped the at- 
tention of the medical attendant ; but he had written an 
order to that efiect on the tablet for ^' cras^* it being then 
noon .' 

The practice of medicine is again different, in respect 
to the choice and number of medical agents employed to 
comKat disease. Powerful purgatives are seldom resorted 
to ; mercurial alteratives are scarcely ever employed ; 
feeble aperients on the one hand, and tonics on the other, 
and what are called nervous medicines, are mostly used. 
The medical practitioners in St. Fetersburgh admit by far 
too large a catalogue of drugs, and consider many simple as 
well as compound chemical preparations to possess virtues 
which an English physician would not think consistent with 
experience. They will frequently recommend medicines 
which are inert, or rely upon the smallest doses of those which 
possess known properties. Sir James Wylie published an 
excellent and extensive pharmacopoeia for the use of the 
army medical officers. That gentleman has travelled too 
much, and read still more, not to know how much 
simpler than formerly is the manner of treating diseases in 
the rest of Europe, and particularly among his own country* 
men, with whose medical works he is well acquainted. He 
is perfectly aware that the really useful part of a pharma- 
copoeia is but short and by no means complicated; yet 
fearful of the result of any attempt to bring about too 
sudden a reform in his department, he has allowed many 
articles to stand in his book which he will propably ex- 


punge «s useless hereafter. The inspection of the medical 
supplies to be found in the ** Aptekas,^'— -of the list of me- 
dicines ordered for the hospitals, — and of the drugs procured 
from this country (for most of them are sent for from 
England through a highly respectable mercantile agent) 
have convinced me of two facts. First, that many articles 
are used which no other medical men ever prescribe now; 
and secondly, that frequent changes take place in the selec- 
tion of the principal articles ordered for importation, show- 
ing a correspondent change in the opinion of the virtues 
of certain drugs. Why, it might be asked, does not the dij 
of St. Petersburgh, with professors of chemistry, and almost 
every mineral production as well as vegetable substance that 
can be required, easily procured from the interior of the Em- 
pire, supply itself with many of those chemical preparations 
which are now sent for from England ? The general import- 
ation of medicines in Russia by private individuals, is subject 
to restrictive regulations and heavy duties ; but admission 
of several of the articles, particularly artificial preparations 
and chemical substances, is encouraged. There can be no 
doubt, but that the same articles might be manufactured in 
Russia, if competent persons were employed for that purpose. 
All these facts are readily explained. In the first place, 
the medical profession in St. Petersburgh includes every 
description of foreigners. There are, indeed, some Russian 
practitioners, but these are too few in comparison with the 
whole number. The rest are Germans, French, Italian, 
and English. Most of the Russian physicians, or 8U^ 
geons, who are educated at the Medico-Chirurgical Aca- 
demy, first go into the army, and seldom remain or settle 
in the metropolis. Each of the foreign physicians brings 
his own system of medicine along with him, on which be 
acts, with frequent deviations from the original, so Aat the 
collective result is a miscellaneous kind of practice. In 


England, in France, in Italy, physicians doubtlesB differ 
in many points of doctrine and practice among themselves 
in each country; still the aggregate results constitute one 
uniform plan, which may, with' propriety, be called na- 
tioiial: at St. Petersburgh such is not' the case. Each 
medical man acts on individual and exclusive opinions) 
brought from different schools, and no uniform results are 
in consequence deduced. In the second place, the know- 
ledge of the progress and improvements made in the art of 
recogninag diseases, as well as of treating them, is tardy 
in reaching St. Petersburgh, and then only by indirect 
channels ; and yet it is only by a ready and free communi- 
cation of discoveries and useful observation* made in both 
those departments of m^cal practice, in different parts of 
the civilized world, that we can hope to maintain ourselves 
on the level of medical superiority. 

It will be seen, that in explaining the reasons of the dif- 
ference which has appeared to me to exist between the 
practice of medicine in St. Petersburgh, and that of other 
countries, I have attributed nothing either to the want of 
able and respectable practitioners, or to insu^cient- medi* 
cal education. I should have swerved from truth, had I 
ioflinuated either of those surmises. Among the physicians 
and surgeons who take the lead in St. Petersburgh, there 
are several of acknowledged merit, and others, who to 
that qualification unite the advantage of long personal ex- 
perience. Unfortunately, most of those who belong to the 
latter class, are past the prime of life, or have worked 
their days *^ so hard and fidl,'^ that the public may, per- 
haps, be deprived of their services at no distant period', 
and see them retire from active duties, while those to 
whom the former character is applicable, are so connected 
with important establishments, or with the several mem- 
bers ci the Imperial Court, that they can scarcely be said 

VOL. II. s 


to form part of the general mass of praetitioDen. Sir 
James Wylie, for instance, whose experience both as s 
physician and sui^geoo, has been yery extensive, and of the 
first order, cannot be said to be one of the medical prac- 
titioners of St Petersburgh. His devotion to the late 
Emperor, from whom he was inseparable, and Us uDrettut^ 
ting attention to that public department which he bai 
himsdf created and brought into a prosperous state^ have 
cut him off from private practice. He is, in the first place^ 
Principal Inspector of the Army Medical Service, and in 
the second, Director of the Medical Department, in the 
Ministry at War, as well as Presklent of the MediccCU* 
rurgical Academy. These are no sinecure offices, and 
Sir James discharges his several duties consctentioady 
and indefatigably. He has, therefore, no time left te 
any other professional occupation. My other friend, 
Dr. Ruhl, first physician to her Majesty the En^raeft- 
mother, has too much to attend to in carrying into efot 
the benevolent intentions of that princess, and inipectiDg 
daily the several institutions which are under her Majestj'i 
immediate protection, to be able to devote any portion of 
his time to private patients. Dr. Rehmatin, a gentfeman, 
equally distinguished for his talents and for his many amiaUe 
qualities, is too much engaged with his official duties under 
the Minister of the Interior, as physidaB-in-chief for the 
rq^ulation of the dvil department of medicine all over the 
empire, ever to be able to take an active shue is private 
practice, were he even in the enjoyment of much better 
health than he unfortunately possesses at present Doettf 
Stoffregen, who attended the kte Empress, and whiMS 
name stands high in the profession, is, I believe, quite in- 
different as to private practice. A fourth German phy* 
sician, Dr. Harder, who has had considerable experience in 
St. Petersburgh, and who is not yornig, has been recently 
appointed to an office at court, and has given up most of 


his private patients. Sir Alexander Crichton, who has left a 
great reputation behind him at St. Petersburgb, established 
his nephew there. Sir W. Crichton, who acts in the capacity 
ct physician to the Emperor and Empress. But this gentle- 
man, of whom I was sorry I could not see more while I 
remmned in that capital, being obliged to attend their Majes- 
ties wherever they go, cannot be said to form a member of 
the professional corps of St. Petersburgh. I might make 
the same observation with regard to another English phy- 
siciiui. Dr. Leighton, who, in consequence of his ntuation of 
pltysician-in-chief of the navy, and phyrician to the Empress, 
is necessarily obliged to abandon great part of his practice. 
Tkis gentleman, however, uniting the branch of midwifery 
to bis other occupations, has formed a more extensive prac« 
doe than any other, and much of it remains by him, notwith- 
standing his occasional and long absence from the capital. 
Though advanced in years, he is still very active, arid 
goes through his fatiguing duties with as much ease as his 
son, a young physocian, educated at Edinburgh, and just 
settled at St. Petersburgh, does in his more limited circle of 
practice. Dr. Leighton practises a great deal among the 
English, and shares with Dr. Walker, a highly respectable 
English physician, the confidence and good opinion of the 
merchants and members of the English Factory. Of the 
aliQities of the latter gentleman, I can speak from perscmal 
experience, having met him more than once in consuhatioo : 
of the former, report speaks favourably. My intercourse 
with him, which was entirely tjie result of his kindness and 
hospitality, tends to conlSrm his public estimation. There is 
MDottier accoucheur, in gteat vogue, whom I also met in con* 
•ahtttioD, and who was kind enough to show me his obstetri'* 
eal sstabhsbment^I mean Dr. Southoff, a German practi- 
tkmer, who is at die head of the obstetrical department of 
the Fouodiing, and professor of midwifery for the female 

s S 


Students. I have also had the pleasure of forming the ac- 
quaintance of Dr. Reinhold, another of the Emperor's phy- 
sicians, a German by birth, who has a respectable practice. 
All these individuals, with one or two exceptions, cer- 
tainly form the principal part of the medical prbfession 
in St. Petersburgh ; but, as I observed before, they are 
too much otherwise engaged to attend to private practice^ 
and cannot, therefore, be comprehended in that body of 
practitioners from whom my observations were derived, and 
to whom my reflections applied. If I turn to the surgeons^ 
I find that Dr. Arendt; Mr. Hrubi, and M. Savenko, both 
eminent oculists ; Messrs. Galloway, Salmon, Gibbs, and 
Beverley; with one or two others, whom I have known but 
little, are deserving of equal comniendation with the brfore* 
mentioned physicians, particularly the first. Dr. Arendt» 
who may, with great justice, be ranked with Cooper, Brodi^ 
Dupuytren, and other very able operators of the present 
day. Now, with respect to private practice, the case with 
tbese gentlemen is difierent. They are all, indeed, connect- 
ed with some branch or other of the public service; but tbar 
private practice is not thereby injured or impeded. They 
naay, therefore, be said to form an integral part of the body 
of medical practitioners in St. Petersburgh ; and as auch 
they are. certainly calculated to raise its character. But 
the rest of that body is much more numerous, and composed 
multifariously, ' as I before remarked ; and it is from a 
knowledge of their medical proceedings, and surreal operar 
tions, in the aggregate, that I deduced those concioiioB> 
which I advanced at the beginning of this chapter. There is 
a class of physicians in St. Petersburgh, which^ for AA 
number and peculiarity of situation, must be ooonderBd 
apart; and it is probably owing to the existenoe of sudi a 
class, that the mass of medical practitioners in that dity does 
iiot stand quite on that uidform, homogeneous, and exidCed 


footing, at all times so desirable, which it holds in other great 
capitals. I allude to the resident domestic physicians in 
the families of the great, whose whole time and attention 
are devoted to their employers, thereby excluding the more 
regular physician from many sources of practice and emolu^ 
ment, and being themselves practically excluded from the 
benefit of a more general practice. There are several fami- 
lies who give from 400/. to 600/. sterling per annum to 
their resident domestic physicians. I am myself acquainted 
with more than one instance of this description. 

It was observed to me, while I was at St. Petersburgh, 
that however respectably constituted the medical corps of 
that capital may be, there are not among. them any very 
*' tnarquant and trenchant characters;**' no. such men as a 
Baillie and a Halford of London ; a Portal and a Recamier, 
of Paris ; a Heimes and Hufeland, of Berlin ; a Rasori and 
Brera» of the North of Italy ; to whom one might look up 
in case of need for a last appeal, when all common aid has 
failed ; and whose European reputation not being confined 
to the spot in whiph they practise, would consequently afford 
a surer guarantee to the patient that, their advice once tak^n, 
every thing that art and skill can effect on this side of the 
grave has been procured. It has been urged, moreover, 
tliat jiot one of the present leading medical characters in St. 
Petersburgh has had his name attached to any important 
work, or to any of thpse many discoveries and improve* 
menta which mark the present medical age in every other 
great country; and that so far St. Petersburgh is very 
dUSekiently supplied with medical talent' from London, 
Ptois^ Berlin, Vienna, and one or two of the principal 
cities in Italy. I am not competent either to admit or to 
deny the tHith of such allegations. It is true, that with, 
the exception of the work already mentioned, from the pen 
of Sir J. Wylie, which I have read, and one or two in- 


teresting memoirs of Dr. Rubl, Dr. Arendt, and oBe or two 
others of which I have some knowledge) I am not acquainted 
with any addition made either to medical literature or 
medical practice, by any of the professional individuals I 
have enumerated ; and that so far none of them may be 
said to have a tranchantj or European character. But is 
admitting thus much, I mean not to accede to the infe- 
rence, that because they have not composed works, or made 
discoveries,* they may not be considered as able practi- 

The police of the medical profession appeared to me to 
be plaoed upon a very judicious footing in St. Petersburgfa. 
No medical man, let his rank be what it may, can settle 
and practise in that city without having undergone a 
proper examination. Regularity of education is thus, at 
all events, ensured in all those who appear there in tbe 
character of medical practitioners. A list of all persons 
authorized to practise is printed yearly, and to judge from 
its extent, it would appear that our brethren of all degrees 
are very numerous in St. Petersburgh. ^ The surveiUana 
of the medical profession, and of its rights and privil^es, is 
confided in a particular manner to the Minister of the 
Home Department, who is assisted by a council of me- 
dieal men, generally selected from the most eminent prac- 
titioners in the city. One of the attributes of this council 
is, to inquire into the rights to practise claimed bjin^ 
dividuals, and to report to the Minister any infraction of 
the established law respecting the r^ulation of the practice 
of medicine, as well as the existence of any empirical im- 
postor. Professed quacks are not tolerated, and the laws 
against them are generally put in force with great strictness. 
A recent example in illustration of this has occurred, in 
which a person was, by an ukase of the Emperor, banished 
from the territory of Russia, for having peraevared in sell- 


ing nostrums aftor he bad been warned by the proper au* 
tb<»ities from so doixig. This happened a few weeks mfter 
my leaving the capital. A man of the name of Ditrich^ 
who had been authorised to practise as a Teterinary 8ur« 
geoD^ took upon himself the more difficult task of professing 
BMdicine in general, notwithstanding the repeated warnings 
he had received from the Medical Direction of St. Peters* 
burgh, against his illegal proceedings. He was therefore 
declared to be an impostor, on legal proof having been pro* 
duoed of that fact, and banished as such from the country, 
the Government publishing its sentence, and the motives 
which led to it <^Afin quVUe serve d'avertissement i 
d^autres charlatans et imposteurs^ car il est de la volenti de 
8. M. L^Empereur que tout delit semblable soit puni de la 
m^rne maniire."*" Had the College of Physioians in London 
such a power, they might soon get rid of the stigma which 
adheres to them, but ought to attach to Government, of suf. 
foring hundreds of pretended doctor§ and declared quacks 
to play off their tricks on the health and purse of His Ma- 
jesty^s liege subjects. There is no marked difference of rank, 
nor any very definite divinon of pnmnoe, between medieine 
and surgery in St. Pctersburgh. I have known both practised 
by the same persons whether surgeons or physicians; and 
ip the military as well as civil hoqoitals^ the distinction, 
with. one or two exceptions, is completely abolished. In 
general, most of those who settle in St. Petersburgh, try 
to attain the honour of Doctor of Medicine ; for, by an 
ukase of the late Emptor, who wished to encourage the 
higher bnmches of education in medidae, persons who 
have obtaiaed the degree ci M. D. are at once admitted 
HSla one of the thirteen classes of nobility. 

A phmrmacktt^ or <-^ Apt^kare,'' dares not make up a 
preseription of any practitioner whose name does not 
• * Jeunial de 8t. Petersburgh, No. S, 18S6. 


appear in the printed ^list, and still less can he venture 
to tell a drug, in howeyer small a quantity, or however 
insignificaot its nature, without a prescription r^ularly 
signed. On both these points the medical admimstFi- 
tion is more strict eye^i than in any other part of Europe. 
Not only must every prescription be signed with the naioe 
of the.physician.whose advice has been taken, but it must 
also mention the patient for whom it is written, with the 
day of the month and year. To the medidoe a. label is 
affixed, mentioning besides, the date and hour of its de- 
livery, its price, and the name of the ** Aptekare" and 
his shop ; but the best regulation is, that each, even the 
most simple medicine, must be sealed. Did such regula- 
tions exist in full, as they exist in part,^in England, and as 
obligatory regulations, instead of being left to the discre- 
tion of chymists, we should not hear of so many drea^ 
accidents and mistakes as occur every year in this country. 
That peculiarly English branch of the medical profession, 
'^an apothecary,^ is as unknown in St. Petersburgfa, as 
it is in every other capital or city on the Continent. 

It will, however, create some surprise, when I state, 
that although a dispenser of medicines, or diymist, as we 
are in the habit of terming him, cannot exercise his calling 
without a previous examination, and must not make up 
prescriptions, except under the. above-mentioned restdc- 
tions, yet any person may, on payment of certain fees^ 
deal in drugs, wholesale and retail, in St. Petersburgh. 
Some such defect in medical legislation exists in thb oouo* 
try, in respect both to chymists and dru^sts, comipared to 
the '' apothecaries;" the latter being restricted from, and the 
two former allowed to supply medicines and drugs, with- 
out previous, examination, and legal authorization. .Mat- 
ters are better managed in France on this highly impor- 
tant subject. The sale of medicines in St. Petersburgh is 


Qot, as ia Berjim, fixed by 'a tariff of prices, and consequently, 
the charges I found to be enormous. Hence it follows, that 
both the ^^ Apt6kare'' and the dealer in drugs frequently 
fotiass.consiclerable fortunes. The supply of medicines, in 
some few of the shops, seemed very^respecti^hle. 
. There appeared to me very little esprit de corps among 
the medical practitioners of St. Peteiisburgh. A few of 
the higher characters meet at each other's hou.3es ; and I 
recollect with satisfaction the pleasant hours I passed at 
the houses of Dr. Rehmann, Dr. Arendt, and Dr. Leigh^ 
toDj the two former of whom^ see a great .deal of company. 
Dr. Arendt, in particular, receives regularly, once a 
week, his medical, and other friends in the eveiiing. This 
ijstem of amicable intercourse among professional men, 
whkh has only lately been introduced into our own metcot 
polls, must be productive of the very best results, if judi- 
ciously employed and properly persevered in. .But, in order 
that private individuals may be able to do this in favour of 
their brethren, their professional incpme (supposing that 
they have no patrimonial fortune) ought to be consider- 
able. In St. Petersburgh, physicians and surgeons, in gveat 
repute, may realize from 60 to 70,000 roubIe;i5 a-year ; and 
lam assured that their establishment, which on a similar 
scale would cost in this country fifteen or sixteen hundred 
pgimds, is maintained there, at an expense of only from 
twonty to twenty-three thousand roubles, or a thousand gui« 
Deas. I know that both Dr. Arendt and Dr. Leighton are in 
the receipt of the former sum from professional .emoluments, 
said all those who have been at their houses know that they 
keep thor establishndents on a very respectable footing.. 

Medical men are rewarded in general by annual pay- 
ments, and these in many instances are considerable. From 
nx hundred, to qpe . thousand, and even.. 'fifteen hundred 
roubles a-year, are given to a physician to attend a whole 


familyi and I know more than one or two distinguiflhed 
families who pay their phyadan two thousand raubkt 
a*year. I am told that presents to medical men, whki 
used to be so common, are not so much the fashion now. 
In a great minority of cases where a phynciui hss bsen 
called in to attend a patient, without having been pre- 
viously engaged for the family, a sum is presented to 
him at the termination of the complaint. Surgeons who 
have to perform capital operations, will afterwards attend, 
pay the requisite numb^ of visits, and receive their re- 
muneration all at once. This practice obtains likewise in 
England. In the case of an obstetrical practitioner, who 
also happens to be the physician of the family at a yearly 
stipend, a fee of three hundred roubles in addition is given 
for every occauckwHeMi, There is no instance, I believe, or 
such instances are very rare if they exist at all, where a me* 
dical man is feed at each visit, unless he be a stranger, snd 
called in consultation for a few times only. Mediesl men 
of the first character have oomplained to me of the ilii- 
berality of part of the public towards the profession, sUd 
above all, of the caprice at the higher classes. They hsve 
informed me that even some of the first families who had 
been mostly benefited by their advice, and to whom thor 
attention had been unremitting, have, notwithstanding, 
changed their medical attendant : all this is very possiUe. 
It is precisely what takes place occasionally in London, snd 
I presume it is only occasionally that it occurs in St. 
Petersburgh. ** L'ingratitude est de tous les pays." 

With respect to another ground of complaint, namely, 
that there are families who have retained a physician as 
a regular medical attendant at an annual stipend, and have 
afterwards changed him for another, without previously 
discharging their obligations, even when sueh obligations 
have in some cases been pf two and three years standing; 


we flhall find its parallel among the apothecaries of this 
iXHintrj, who sell drugs to get paid for their skill by bills 
af charges geoerally presented annually, and discharged 
annually. I have heard more than one of this class of me- 
dical attendants, particularly among the most noted and 
moat employed, complain of precisdy the same thing ; and 
al this moment, I am personally acquainted with instances 
of this kind, where an apothecary has been changed for 
aoodier, and yet his lawful pecuniary claim remains to be 
settled. True it is, that this class of medical practitioners 
have their redress in a court of law ; but what highly re- 
spectable member among them would resort to such an 
expedient? Parallel cases, therefore, may with truth be 
said to exist in both countries, of this mixture of capilce 
and moral turpitude on the part of patients ; but in both 
cmintiies, such examples must be assumed as mere excep- 
tioiu, and of comparatively rare occurrence— in no wise 
altering the more general character of punctuality, which 
marlLs the intercourse between patients and physicians. 

Indeed, it must ever be to the interest of the former to 
enjoy such a character among those who are to take charge 
of their health, a task far more important than that of un- 
dertaking the defence oi mere property, if they wish to en* 
joy the benefit of an art which,' considering the boon it 
confers, is entitled* perhaps, to more remuneration than aay 
other service rendered by a particular class of individuals 
to the public. The correspondence between the latter and 
their physicians, is made up of so much manner as well M 
matter, feeling as well as principle, that it could never be 
found of the best description, except in those members of 
the prafessoon whose minds have been disciplined not only 
by study, but by a favourable correspondence with society ; 
not by the perusal of a few medical volumes alone, but by ge- 
neral reading ; not by weU-digested theories merely, but by 


long and extensive experience. Now the acquiation of afi 
these qualifications can only be procured by a very congider- 
able sacrifice of time and pecuniary resources. To be abk 
to do both, implies respectability of character andstatioo 
in life ; and respectability both of character and- station in 
life demands a just and corresponding consideration. Hence 
the physician has a claim on the public, which it must be 
the interest of that public to admit, and take care that it be 
properly satisfied ; for without remuneration, there can be 
no service rendered ; without a punctual and superior remu- 
neration, one cannot expect superiority of service. 

This is no idle digression, as some may be inclined to 
think. One of the most eloquent writers on the duties of 
our profession, the late Dr. Gregory^ proved that till with- 
in even a few years, medical ethics were yet in their infimt 
state in England. They are still so in the <;apitalof wUch 
I have attempted to give a description. Their discussion, 
therefore, in this plaice, in reference both to that city and my 
readers, cannot be said to be either ill-timed or out of 

The great difficulty in the question of remuneration to 
medical men has been rather in r^ard to the mode of ii, 
than to the quantity. A tradesman who gives us, at our 
demand, real property, has a self-evident clum upon us for a 
tantum pro tanto ; and he receives it, and there is nothing 
in the transaction that shocks either the giver or the re- 
ceiver. But to a person in every way our equal, (making 
abstraction of aristocratic distinctions,) who, at our request, 
deals out for the space of a few minutes certain words of 
advice, and confers a benefit on us^ by drawing from the 
stores of his well-tutored mind a few cabalistical comfaina- 
(ions, which he writes on paper,— it is not easy to roffier, ip 
the manner of the first-mentioned transaction, an ec[uiva-. 
lent for such a service. There must be, in the beginning 


of an intercourse of this description, violence done to the 
natural feeling^ of a gentleman, of one or both parties, where 
pecuniary remuneration is offered and accepted ; and that 
such is actually the case I appeal to my brethren, and those 
of my readers who have had occasion for their services, to 
confirm. I am aware that practice, at last, will harden both 
partiesy and that the transaction will become purely me- 
chanical ; and truly, if one is to yield faith to the satirists 
on our profession, there are cases in whicH one of the par- 
ties, at least, has soon acquired that habit pf indifferenccf. 
But still the affair is rather a humiliating one, both 
for the gi^er and the receiver. It is probably this consi- 
deration that led to the adoption of that' variety of ways of 
remunerating physicians, which exist among different -na- 
tions of Europe ; but which are all, more or less, objec- 
tionable or inconvement for one of the parties. Why might 
not a middle course be adopted, particularly in St. Peters- 
.burgb, which being but a young capital, might well take 
the lead in the adoption of the new system, consisting in 
remunerating a physician, as a physician-accoUcheur is now 
remunerated in England ? This inethod avoids; all objec- 
tion, and establishes a distinction of the degrees of compensa- 
tion which certainly ought to exist in the practice of physic. 
The obstetrical attendant in London knows that when his 
services are engaged, his presence will be required for a given 
time, and that at the end of his attendance he will receive 
the amount of his honoraries in a letter, with the usual ex* 
presrions, of civility, thus disarming the act of its mercenary 
character. That amount he also knows is determined by 
his own standing and reputationr; and whether he has oc- 
cafekm to see the patient ten, fifteen,. or twenty times during 
the fixed period, the remuneration will still be the same, 
being' settled, in fact, by usage and tadt agreement. Pre- 
daely so should the/nire'i^ysidian be treated in regard to all 


cases, which require frequent attendaDce, uodl their favour- 
able or unfavourable termination ; and for such aa attend- 
ance, an equally tacit understanding should exist, that a 
certain sum, conveyed in the same ddicate manner at the 
conclusion of the case, will be considered an adequate com- 
pensation for the services rendered. The sum in question 
should neither be regulated by the number of visits, (fir 
that circumstance might give rise to sel&rii desires on the 
one part, or to Injurious suspicion oo the other,) nor bj 
the time employed in the treatment of the patient ; but bj 
die standing and name of the practitioner, and by tbe 
dass of disease which he is called upon to treat Such is 
this outline of a plan, whidi I will take anothtf opportu- 
nity of developing, and which it would be desirable to see 
adopted in every civilized country. 

In St. Fetersburgh, encouragement of another deBaip- 
tion is not wanting to stimulate the medical profesdoo, and 
add to their respectability. The Imperial distinctions, be* 
stowed by the Emperor on all those who by the length or 
importance of their professional services, either in a military 
or dvil capacity, ha,re claimed the attention of the Sove* 
reign, are looked upon as valuable rewards in a country 
where the possession of superior orders of chivalry eaoitn 
rank, and rank importance. The two orders generally be- 
stowed on medical men of emin^icci are those of St Vladiour, 
and of St. Anne ; both of which are accompanied by stars 
worn on the breast if it be the first or second dass of 
the former, or the first class of the latter that has been 
granted. Thus« Sir James Wylie has both those destine* 
tions ; and Dr. Ruhl and Dr. Leighton have likewise sin<:e 
obtained both those orders. By ipranting also to those 
medical officers tlie lionorary titles of Privy Counsdlorif 
and Actual Counsellors of State, tbe Emperor often adds 
to tbe importance of the relative rank^ which plisoes them 


with the Lieatenant-generals and Major-generals, entitling 
them to that distioguithiDg form of address, which in Eng- 
land is only employed when speaking or writing to Ambas- 
ndors. Medical men are also rewarded with less important 
orders of knighthood, the insignia of which are worn by them 
oa all oocaskms. Another mode of advancing or rewarding 
medical men, is by an appointment to some of the lucrative 
medical charges belonging to most of the great public 
Departments and Institutions of Government in the capi- 
tal, which are very numerous; for wherever a coosi* 
derable number of empioyis are brought together in any 
of those establishments, whether belonging to the Court 
or to the Government, as in the case of the Post^ffice for 
ioatanoe, or the Imperial Mews, &c. a physician, and some- 
times a surgeon, is appointed with a salary, and not uitfre- 
quently also, even with a residencew 

I have stated that medical education has been provided 
far at St. Petersburgh, in an establishment distinct from the 
University. That Institution bears the name of tlie Impe^ 
rial Medko-Cldrurgieal Academy ^ and is a species of ool* 
lege in which a certain number of students are instructed in 
every branch of the medical profession at the expense of 
G«iveninent. But as all those who partake of the benefits 
of such an establishment are bound afterwards to serve 
dwrin^ a fixed number of years in the army, the Medico- 
Chirurgkal Academy of St. Petersburgb cannot be asumi- 
kifeed to the more general description of medical schools, and 
mvst be looked upon as a military institution only. This 
foundation owes its origin to the Emperor Paul, who directed 
Count Vassiliefi^, his Minister of Finance, to erect the pre* 
aeni building, after the fdans of an Italian Architect, Porto, 
itt the Vibourg Dbtrict, and in a very favourable situation, 
to which allusion has already been made. The academy has 
existed about twenty«nine years, and has gn^lually und^- 


gone several wholesome changes at the sug^tion, and 
under the management of its actual president. Sir James 

The edifice has a striking appearance. It occupies a 
spacious area, and forms three sides of a square. The 
centre is ornamented with a Corinthian portico, and Co- 
rinthian columns also embellish the wings. On the friese 
over the portico is inscribed the name of the Academy, in 
gold lettera. The elevation consists of a basement and a 
principal story : internally it contiuns a magnificent hall of 
reception, in which the degrees are granted, lighted by a 
handsome cupola, at the base of which runs a gallery, 
fitted up with book-cases, and communicating with two 
yery spacious rooms, of great length, one on each side, 
containing the library of the institution. Class rooms are 
distributed in diflerent parts of the building ; and on one 
side of the covered corridors, which extend from the centre 
to the extremity of each wing, on both floors, there are 
several small rooms, or cells^ containing two and four bedft 
and a neat ^writing-desk, with a few chairs, which sene 
as sitting and sleeping-rooms for the students. These 
I found in good order and cleanly. They are invariably 
inspected by a superintending professor two or three times 
B. day. M. Eneholm was the inspector-general, by whom 
I had the honour of being accompanied, as well as by 
several of the professors, who, in the most kind and ready 
manner imaginable, afibrded me every information I de- 
sired. The inspector-general, who is responsible for the 
discipline and good conduct of the students, has four 

There were, at the time, in all, 840 students, who are di- 
vided into three distinct sections. The firft consists of two 
hundred, whoapply themselves to medicine and surgery; ^^^ 
secondj of twenty scholars, who study pharmacy ; the third, 


of 120, who attend to the veterinary art, subdivided into a 
class of veterinary surgeons, of whom there are twenty, and 
of asMstant-veterinary surgeons, the number of whom 
amounts to one hundred. The latier live in a separate 
establishment altogether. 

In regard to the arrangement of the studies, the scholars 
jate ranked according to the time of their admission, there 
being four classes tat that purpose ; namely, of the first, 
second, third, and fourth year's residence. 

In the first class — The principles of Medicine and Vete- 
rinary Surgery are taught, with Natural History, Mine- 
ralogy, Zoology, Anatomy, Mathematics, and Natural 

In the second class — Physiology, Pathology, Anatomy 
Demonstrations and Dissection, Botany, and Chemistry. 

In the third class — Pharmacy, the Art of writing For- 
mulae, General Therapeutics, Clinical Medicine respecting 
Acute Disease, and Surgery. 

In the fourth class— Continuation of Theoretical and 
Practical Surgery, Therapeutics, Midwifery, Materia Me- 
dica, the Medical Police^ and Opthalniic Surgery. 

The studc^nts ri«&at'six o'clock in summer^^nd at seven 
in winter, and breakfast in their own rooms. Besides the 
regular attendance at church ^on Sundays, they are ex*» 
pected to go thither at seven o^clock in the morning, every 
Wednesday and Friday. 

They attend the different lectures from eight till twelve 
o'clock, and again from two till seven in the afternoon. Iii 
the absence of the professors, their assistants are called 
upon to deliver the necessary lectures. This arrangement 
is the more requisite, inasmuch as several of the professors 
fiving on the opposite side of the river are hot unfre- 
quently prevented from being at their post during the 
removal of the bridges already noticed. This was the case 



on two occasions during my short stay at St. Petersbuigb, 
vhen one or two of the professors of my acquaintance 
eould not) for the cause just mentioned, repair to the Aca- 
demy for three or four days together. 

The whole number of students, except the Assistant Vete« 
rinary Surgeons^ dine together at half paat twelve^ in a spa- 
cious refectory, to which I accompanied them on one ocea- 
non, and noticed their diet and the accommodations prepared 
for them. The former is simple and nourishing, and so is 
their supper : but their breakfast is simpler still ; for on 
asking of what it consisted, the answer I received was, 
** Du pain et de Teau de la Neva !'' On the whole, I must 
confess, that contrasting the manner in which these stu- 
dents of a learned profession are treated, with that adopted 
towards the pupils at the Ecole des Mifies, the Academy 
of Arts, and more particularly the Corps of Cadets, it ap- 
peared to me that the balance was much against the poor 
doctors. Howeyer, they are suffered to want for no- 
thing, receive gratuitous education, and are treated kindly. 
The discipline kept up here is very strict. Repeated 
misdemeanors are visited with the severe punishment of 
placing the offenders in the ranks of the army as pri- 
vates; By nine o'clock at nighty every light must be put 

The scholastic year begins in September. One moath 
only is allowed for vacation, when those of the students 
who wish to do so, are allowed to go home to thek friends. 
Some of the Professors lecture in Busstan, others in Latin. 
I attended one of tl>e lectures delivered in the former lan- 
guage, by the Professor of Chemistry, in whieb I coukl not, 
of course, judge of the style, but saw enough of the manner 
of conducting the experiments to lead me to believe it to 
be good. The final examinations take place in both lan- 
guages ; and the student must likewise give pxtefr df p*^ 


ficienej in the German and French languages, and under^ 
fltanding Bhethbrick, Lalin composition, and the elements 
ot mathematics, before he can be admitted at all into the 
Academy. Degrees both in medicine and surg^y are 
granted, as I before observed ; and likewise in an inferior 
rank of the profession, which corresponds with the Officier 
de Santiy of the French army. The Academy is open to 
cmlians, on paying a certain annual sum for their edu- 
ctttioD ; bat few of these ever avail themselves of thi« 
privilege. The regular students of the Imperial Medico* 
CUrurgical Academy, educated at the expense of Govern- 
ment, must, on quitting that Institution^ serve in a medical 
capacity in the army for the space <tf six years, in distant parts 
of the Empire, and for an annual pay of 600 or 600 roubks. 
Im the course of their examination, which, judging from 
the variety of important topics connected with it, I imagine 
to be very strict, the examiners have an opportunity of 
determining the degree of talent of the candidate, who is 
accordingly pbiced in one of the three existing classes of 
junior medical officers of the army. The advanti^ of 
this arrangement, which is, moreover, influenced by the 
general conduct of the candidate, is the creation of a cer- 
tain degree of emulation amongst them, and they labour 
hard with a view to being placed at once in the first class, 
an leaving the Academy. For, according as they are ar- 
ranged by the examiners in the first, second, or third class, 
they will be three, four, or six years in acquiring that distinc* 
tion, which, in Russia, is the beginning of civil existence. 
The nude they first obtain at the expiration of any of those 
periods, is that of Major, or of the 8th class. As for the 
Aannr of any partiality on the part of the examiners ren- 
dering the ol]gedt of this peculiar classification either nu- 
gatory or injurioas, it appeared to me, that as matters 
condncted according to Sir James Wylie'^s plan^ tlie 

T 2 


thing was difficult, if not impossible ; and let me hope that 
the character of the examiners also makes it improbable. A 
great deal of nonsense has been said in an otherwise highly 
respectable medical journal, in London, on the subject of 
the condition of junior medical officers in the Russian annj, 
evidently from a pure want of knowing better, and not 
from malice. The Editor has subjected them tostarvatioD 
and the knout ; and, among other.remarks, he holds up to 
scorn the pay offered to those who may choose to enter the 
Russiai^ land or naval service, from this or any other country. 
Now it appears that the pay in question is precisely simi- 
lar to that of the corresponding rank among the military 
surgeons, or aide-chirurgient in the French army, being 
1000 roubles in the one, which are virtually equal to 1100 
franks in the other. As to starving, the thing is some- 
what ridiculous in a country where you may be paid in 
comestibles to any amount, for the most trifling professional 
•ervice rendered to individuals residing in the interior. 

The library of the institution principally consists of two 
rooms, each SOO feet in length, fitted up with glass book- 
cases, arranged very ingeniously, according to the subject^ 
or the divisional and collateral branches of medical and sur- 
gical science. The students are admitted to it every 
Tuesday and Thursday, from five till seven oVlock in the 
afternoon. About 40,000 of the books contained in this 
library were selected, by order of Paul, from the Warsaw 
Library, already alluded to, and presented to the Academy. 
It is, however, deficient in several works, particularly col- 
lections of Memoirs and periodical publications, and above 
all, in modem books. 

In addition to the Library there are connected with this 
institution, but apart from the main building, coUectioDS 
of pathological, and natural anatomy, among which I no* 
ticed some valuable specimens ; and an Observatory. Vete- 


liuaiy surgery seemg to be much cultivated. There is a 
separate building for that purpose, in which I visited the 
Clinical Stables, kept in excellent order; a Cabinet of 
Comparative Anatomy, which, although in an incipient 
state, is really very promising; and lastly, a Reading 
Room for the pupils. 

When the students are ill, they are received in their own 
maisdn de santi (Lazaret), or are sent to one of the wards 
of a large hospital immediately adjoining the academy, called 
Pedestrie, or General Hospital for the troops of the line, in 
which are also some clinical wards for the medical as well 
as surgical instruction of the students. Dr. Solmon, who 
was for some time in this country, is adjoint^professor of 
5Ui^cal clinic, and not only a well-informed, quiet and 
modest person, but an able operator. I had the benefit of 
his company in going over the different wards and divisions 
of this great hospital ; and I had great pleasure at the same 
time in examining the large collection of surgical instru- 
ments belonging to the establishment, as well as about fifty 
urinary calculi of various sizes, that had been extracted by 
the surgeons of the hospital in the course of a few years. 
Dr. Sdmbn and Monsieur Savenko, another professor, are 
striving to form a cabinet of pathological anatomy. The 
latter gentleman gives clinical lectures on the diseases of 
the eye, which are treated in separate wards of the same 
hospital, unfortunately like the rest of the wards, too 
crowded, and not properly ventilated. This hospital in* 
deed has many disadvantages. It is in the first place too 
extensive, and is built principally of wood ; the wards are 
low, and encumbered with too many columns ; the bedsteads 
are old-fashioned, and of wood ; and owing to the great 
number of patients, they are placed too near to each other. 
So large indeed is the number of those admitted at times, 
that some of them have been placed on mattresses on 

378 6£N£RAL MlLiTARY H08P1TAL. 

the floor, for want of bedsteads. This great influx arises 
from circumstances over which there seems to be little con- 
trol; namely, the crowded state of the other hosfHtals; 
and the occasional interruption of communication between 
the hospitals on the two sides of the river. Patients are 
received without distinction, from every regiment, in this 
hospital, which contained twelve hundred at the time of 
my visit. By the addition, however, of some other build- 
ings recently erected of stone, and on an improved plan, as 
well as scale, there is accommodation for S050 patients. 
The dally admissions frequently amount to from fifty to 
sixty ; and probably an equal number are discharged cured 
on two stated days in the week. The patients on their 
arrival are received into a large room, strippedand washed, 
and attired from top to toe in the clean apparel of the 
hospital. Their ordinary dress is collected together, 
washed and deposited in a lingerie till they are discharged. 

The medical service of this large establishment is per* 
formed by ten physicians, who are surgeons at the same 
time. These are under the immediate direction of a Pby- 
sician-in-Chief, Dr. Hygler, to whom I had the pleasure 
^ of being introduced on this occasion, and from whom I le- 
ceived many valuable details. This gentleman assured me 
that the mortality in this vast receptacle of disease amounted 
to no more than one in forty-eight. . I should have liked to 
have seen the register and data on which so unusually fa^ 
vourable a calculation has been founded. 

The principal divisions of this extensive establishment* 
resembling in many respects a small town, are these ; 1st. 
a medical clipic, with thirty beds for soldiers, and ten for 
officers, kept apart. This arrangement is judicious, for the 
student may compare together the diseases affecting the 
two dassesof patients, and learn to treat them accordipgly. 
2d. A sufgipal 4inic, consisting of one ward with twenty- 


£a^ur beds, for important surgical .cases ; and three small 
wanls* containing forty beds, for clinical opfatbalinic surgery* 
Tbe cases of which I took notice in the former, were a deep 
seated wound of the synovial cavity of the malleolar articu- 
lation— -a deep caries and destruction of the os sternum*-a 
fracture of the neck of the femur cured, the limb turned 
inwardly. Dr. Solmon admitted that he could not ascer- 
tain whether the fracture was within or without the cap- 
sular covering. 3d. A division consisting of several wards, 
with accommodation for 120 patients labouring under dis- 
eases of the eyes, not intended to form part of the clinic. 
This part of the establishment is under the direction of M. 
Savenko. 4th. The Erotic department with SOO patients, 
kept separate from the rest, and most of them treated accord- 
ing to Dzondi's method, which I have been assured has been 
most successful. This I can easily conceive ; but I cannot 
agree that it is necessary to its success to keep the temp^ 
rature of the wards to 74 degrees of Fahrenheit. 5th. The 
lunatic department : this demands immediate improvement. 
There is only one voice and one general admission on the 
subject. Wholesome alterations will soon take place in this 
department. Not only the long-sleeved camisole is used to 
confine those that are violent ; but straps of leather are 
emjdoyed to fasten them to their beds, or to the ground, in 
a manner by no means cruel. They have also a method of 
confining an unruly patient, or one who has deserved cor- 
rection, by means of a leather strap drawn across a room 
from nde to side, with an ppright pole and leather rings 
for the hands and feet, so as to maintain the patient in an 
upright posture, and quite insulated. This measure is sel- 
dom resorted to* To what end I know not, but there is also 
a room, rather dark, thickly wadded all round as well as 
en the floor, in which a violent patient is turned loose. 6th. 
The officers' sick quarters, which can accommodate sixty of 


them 9 and are yery well kept. Those amoDg the offioen 
who labour under mental disease have separate quarters, 
and amounted at the time of my visit to forty-seven. 7th. 
The sick quarters for boys, the orphans of soldiers, with sb 
equal number of beds, and equally well treated. 8th, snd 
finally; the division in which sick prisoners and detema 
belonging, to the army are treated. 

• From this account it will appear that the students of the 
Medico-Chirurgical Academy have ample opportunities of 
seeing some practice for the space of two years, in all the 
branches of military medicine and surgery, and of as&stiDg 
at operations. Two branches of practical instruction, how* 
ever, are wanting to complete their medical education, 
namely, clinical medicine and surgery for the diseases of wo« 
men and children, both of which, either as military surgeons, 
or as civilians, after the expiration of their public senrioe, 
they will be called upon to practise; and the means of ac- 
quiring practical knowledge in the management of labours. 
The professors of the Imperial Academy are fully aware 
of these deficiencies, and would wish them remedied. No* 
thing can be more urgent or more desirable ; for from all 
I have heard, and the little I have seen, I must not con- 
ceal that I received but an unsatisfactory impression with 
regard to the present state of knowledge in St. Peters- 
burgh on the three subjects I have just alluded to. This 
department is in fact yet to be created ; and when one 
reflects on the great mortality which is said to take place 
among, lying-in women, even in the best classes of society, 
it is to be hoped that the acknowledged defects wiU be 
speedily remedied. 

Opposite to the more modem part of the Pedestri^ Hos- 
pital, is the Navy Hospital, the exterior of which struck 
me as being very handsome and symmetrical. But I had 
spent six hours uninterruptedly in examining the former, 


and I felt my courage fail me when a proposition was made 
to me to visit the latter by M. Savenko, who had formerly 
belonged to it. This circumstance I now regret; for 
other engagements haying supervened, I finally quitted the 
capital without having seen that Estabhshment. 

As I am on the subject of military hospitals^ which are 
very numerous at St. Petersburgh, and all of which I 
examined with great attention — thanks to Sir James Wylie, 
who afforded me every facility for the purpose, and to Dr. 
Reynhold, one of the Emperor's physicians, as well as of 
the r^ment of Chevalier-Guards, who accompanied me 
on all those occasions — I may as well state my general im- 
pression respecting those establishments. But in order to 
comprehend the importance of such a subject, and form a 
just notion of what must be the accommodation which the 
garrison of St. Petersburgh requires, I shall previously 
enumerate the regiments of guards, forming, about the 
time of my stay in that capital, one*half of the said garri-. 
son, and amounting to nearly thirty thousand men. 

These were— 

Foot Guards. Horse Guards. 

Preobrajensky. Chevalier-Guardes. 

Moscowsky. Guardes k Cheval. 

Semenoffsky. Cuirassiers of the Guards. 

Grenadiers of the Guards. Cuirassiers of the Empress. 

Izmailoffsky. Dragoons. 

Pavloffsky. Hulans. 

Sappers of the Guard. Hussars. 

Guards of Finland. Cossacks of the Guard. 

Horse Chasseurs of the Guard. 
Horse Pioneers. 
Horse Artillery. 

Hospitals for all, or the best part of these regiments, as 
well as for the infantry of the line, exist in St. Petersburgh, 


^ich, for style of building, order, cleanliiiess, and internal 
arrangement, are superior, with but one exception, (and that 
exception is, the H6pital des Pauvres^ in the same dty,) to 
any thing I have seen in other parts of Europe, even to 
those magnificent establishments, the Naval Hospitals of 
Haslar and Plymouth ; and of course greatly superior to 
their own general Military Hospital, just described. I fed 
confident that did but one such 'institution exist in Lon- 
don, it would become the subject of general conversation 
among the profession, and would be visited as a matter of 
curiosity. If there must be a drawback to this general 
picture, it is, that the end in view in forming these hos- 
pitals, did not seem to require such a combination of every 
thing that money can purchase, or such magnificent ar- 
rangements. I cannot trust myself on the discussion of 
this subject in this place, and much less enter into a d^ 
scription of these difierent hospitals. I shall defer that to 
a future opportunity ; but I cannot forbear saying, that, 
if the manner of treating diseases in these establishments, 
is on a par with every thing that the Imperial Government 
has done for the luxurious accommodation of its guards, 
there is no nobleman or wealthy individual in England, 
or elsewhere, who could desire, or, desiring, obtain a hand- 
somer habitation in case of sickness, a more wholesome 
and- better prepared diet, a greater number of personal 
comforts, a superior degree of cleanliness in the house, 
servants, bedding, or personal linen ; and finally, a more 
assiduous and constant attendance than are enjoyed in 
These palaces for the sick, by private soldiers and subal- 
tern officers. Fortunate it is, that the Russian soldier 
hates an hospital, and will often wish to be considered well, 
when, in reality, he is far from it, in order to be soon re- 
leased from these chambers of sickness; or it would be 
difficult to get him to quit this institution when once ad- 


sihted into it. His Majesty, and the Grand^uke Michael, 
win fi«quently pay a visit to these establishments, either 
unattended, or with the smallest retinue imaginable, at un- 
certain periods, and without the least previous notice. It 
may be supposed that under such circumstances, the mili* 
tary hospitals must need be in the best order imaginable. 
The able hand of Sir James Wylie, the inspector-general 
of the military hospitals, fs again visible in the very excel- 
lent condition in which those of St. Petersburgh are to be 
found at this moment. But, above all, it is the immediate 
and personal inspection of them by the Sovereign, who in- 
quires into every branch of their service and manner of 
conducting them, promenades the wards, interrogates the 
patients, and encourages the attendants, which produce» 
the striking effect here mentioned. The hospitals of the 
Preobrajensky and Semenoffsky regiments; of the Chevalier 
Guardes, and Guardes k Cheval (without alluding to the 
medical practice), are fit models for every civilized nation 
in Europe to imitate. The building of the Semenoffsky 
Hospital, which was erected by the late Emperor Alex- 
ander, when yet Grand-duke, is of the finest description. 
One particular circumstance struck me in the management 
of these hospitals; namely, the total absence of female 
nurses in all of them. 

Independently of the Regimental Hospitals here alluded 
to, there is a general miliUu'y hospital, situated in the 
fifth section of the liteinoi district, and called the Artillery 
Hospital, which, though placed on a respectable footing, 
and somewhat better, in many respects, than that of Pe* 
deUrUy cannot be included in the general eulogium I have 
bought myself called upon by impartiality to pass on the 
fiormer. The Artillery Hoepital, which is as large as a 
viUage, consists of a great number of bouses, built of wood, 
arranged in rows and squares, which contain the wards 


and receive patients from every regiment, or military de^ 
p6t, that has no hospital of its own in the capital. It 
also admits such patients as cannot be transferred to their 
own . regimental hospitals, or otherwise disposed of in 
the Pedestniy in consequence of interrupted communica- 
tion, by the removal of the bridges on the Neva. I ex-* 
amined this establishment in all its details, and was present, 
by special invitation, at the removal of the arm of a 
guardsman at the shoulder joint, in consequence of the 
bone, which had been left after a former amputation, 
having protruded through the soft part to some extent, 
thus placing the patient'^s life in jeopardy, from the great 
discharge and irritation perpetually kept up. The opera* 
tion was performed by a young military surgeon in a very 
creditable manner. It is principally for the use of this 
class of medical ofScers, that Sir James Wylie has estab- 
lished, a Medico-Chirurgical Journal, published in Bus- 
nan, at irregular periods, under bis superintendence; the 
only work of the kind, I believe, to. be met with in that 

. It is not my intention to say a word on the general 
subject of Russian medical and surgical skiH, for reasons 
often repeated by me in the course of this work ; but I 
must not omit, in this part of my book, to pay a well- 
merited eulogium to Dr. Arendt, who is an honour to 
Russian surgery. He is, perhaps, the most skilful piscti- 
tioner in cases of aneurism in existence, having performed 
the operation fourteen times, (in four of which he tied the 
external iliac artery,) and has been completely successful 
in twelve of them. His success too in his operations on the 
subclavian artery and external carotid, has been too long 
known to the medical world to need any particular notice. 
The resection of the mentonian part of the lower jaw, in a 
young girl, which included four of the front teeth, mentioned 



m another place, and performed by him last year, for the 
purpose of effectually removing a carcinomatous tumour, and 
the neat manner in which he has restored the form, both in- 
ternally and externally, of the jaw, so that very little defor- 
mity is perceptible, reflect the highest credit on his judgment 
and adroitness. In operating for the stone he has been 
equally fortimate. Ten times has he performed lithotomy in 
the last eight years, with the loss of one patient only. This 
gentleman^s experience in military surgery has been very 
extensive. He made most of the campaigns with the 
Russian armies, and distinguished himself greatly by his 
bold operations, performed in the presence of the leading 
French surgeons of Paris, in the hospitals of which city 
the wounded Russian soldiers had been lodged. Dr. 
Arendt has since left the public service, and is engaged' 
in cdbsiderable private practice. Having had many op- 
portunities of conversing with him on professional sub-' 
jects, and of meeting him in consultation, I may say that' 
I found him to entertain what, in my humble opinion, 
appeared to me to be sounder views in pathology and the 
treatment of diseases, than I had generally noticed among 
aone of his'colleagues in the civil hospitals, of which he' 
18, at this moment. Inspector-general. His modesty equals, 
in every respect, his professional superiority. 

It was in his company that I proceeded, on some other 
occasion, to visit the Civil Hospitals. There are four 
such establishments of importance in St. Petersburgh. 

That of Obouchoff is the largest civil ho^ital, and 
contains 6S5 beds in all, inchiding about 120 for lunatic 
patients treated at the charge of the city. It is situated on 
tlie quay of the Fontanka. It has an open ground railed 
in brfore it, and a very extensive front, with a large garden 
bdiind. The system of internal arrangement differs in' 
every respect from that of the Military hospitals, and is by 


no means so good. Wards, a quarter of a mile in length 
on the ground and first stories, are not calculated to insure 
that quiet, comfort, and silence, which are so essential in the 
treatment of disease. This hospital was, at the time of my 
visit, under repair ; and the patients were crowded in seme 
temporary wooden buildings, at the extremity of the gar- 
den. It is the modernized edifice intended for them that I 
object to, on account of the excessive length of the wards, 
which are 560 feet long, and 40 feet wide. It is but justice ta 
add, that such wards are extremely well ventilated, that the 
beds are placed at a considerable distance from each other, 
and that both the bedding and bedsteads are of the best de- 
scription for such an establishment. There is accommoda- 
tion for S56 male, and 150 female patients. Their admis* 
sion takes place on stated days, and is regulated by the 
opinion of the head-physician, and the number of the va- 
cant beds in the hospital. Cases of danger are admitted at 
all times and in preference. There is a resident physician 
in the house, and two visiting physicians, one of whom must 
remain in the hospital four-and-twenty hours, taking it by 
turns to attend. The resident and visiting physicians go 
round the wards at eight in the morning in summer, and 
seven in the winter. The visiting physician, whose tarn 
it is not to be in the house, visits the hospital morning 
and evening. Dr. Arendt, the Inspector-general, goes 
Tound twice a week. Dr. Meyer, a Grerman by birth, is^ 
one of the visiting physicians, and, I understand, has a 
respectable private practice ; we, however, diflfered greatly 
in our notions of diagnosis and the treatment of dis- 
eases. Still it is but justice to say, that his very minute 
mode of investigating every, even the smallest symptoia 
of the complaint, which was regularly noted in a teff^ 
ter of the case, written in Latin, and for eaeh of which 
he had a remedy, rendered him not amenable to the ap* 
plication of an anecdote related to me by an elderly French 


general who had been witness to the facts, r^spedting a to- 
tally different mode of hospital practice. That gallant 
officer assured me that he had inspected the Military hos« 
pitals on one occasion, when upwards of five thousand sick 
were collected in them, and that the physician in chief, in 
order to get through his business before iiight, used to in- 
sist on aH those who could stand, arranging themselves in 
rank and file for examination. He would then^ beginning 
from the head of the columns, walk fast through the lines, 
aooompanied by his assistants, carrying a book with pen and 
ink, and count '^ un^ deux^ troisj quatre, cinq, saign^e, — six, 
$epty huitj neufy dix, onze, douze, purge, — treize, quaiorze^ 
quimze, ieize, ^metique,'^ and so on, until he had exhausted 
the materia medica, sharing equally among his patients his 
knowledge of that branch of medicine. 

Having seen the ordinary patients, I visited, with Dr. Kai* 
8tf , the attendant physician, two corridors, in which there 
are rooms on one side, for the treatment of lunatics. Mad- 
nes8 haa ike same aspect and the same language in every 
country. Walking among the patients at St. Fetersburgh 
reminded me of my visits to the wards of Bethlem. The 
sme suUenness^ ferocious glance, or silly grin ; the same 
gait and depcnrtment ; the look of suspicion, the frown, the 
menaeing attitude equally remarkable in both instances ; 
the boisterous mirth, the Babel noise of tongues, the clap- 
ping of hands in both cases, alike marking the disease. 
These rob the individuals of their nationality, and level 
then to the class of unintellectual behigs, equally alike 
in every oountry* Doctor Kaiser seems both an intelligent 
and a very humane physician, and possesses great control 
oiver his paticnta. I received with great pleasure his pro- 
wiae of sendii^ me the abstract of his register for the last 
iburteen years^ 

it is a curious fact, that this is the only Lunatic Asylum 
for Civilians to be found in the government or province of 


St. Petersburgh ; and that although there is room for 
125 patients, there are seldom more than 105, as was the 
ease at the time of my visit to it. This, compared to other 
countries, is a very small number indeed. No lunatic can 
be received as such, without an order of the Civil Governor 
of St. Petersburgh. Each patient costs the General Admi- 
nistration of Hospitals ten roubles a month, or 5/. lOs. ^ 

The next hospital, called IvanoiT, I did not visit It 
is situated on the Island of St. Petersburgh, and re* 
ceives patients from that Island and the Vassileiostroff. 
At present it contains accommodation for only ISO, and 
I was informed is not on a good footing. It is, however, 
soon to be transferred to the last-mentioned Island, where 
a new and commodious building is erecting for that pur. 
pose which will contain 250 beds. 

To the third hospital, called Kalinkin, for the treatment 
of erotic complaints, I paid a particular visit. It contains 
S£0 beds, and ten for lying-in women labouring under thoee 
liffections. The beds are arranged in double parallel wards, 
194 of them for the male, and 114 for the female patients. 
In the first four wards I noticed some very young gids. 
The police has fifty-five beds reserved for those who are sent 
hither by its order. It is only since the time of Catherine 
that an hospital of this description has been established in 
St Petersburgh. She directed that the women might be 
receive with and su£Pered to retain a mask ; but this prac- 
tice was found liable to a great many abuses, and has since 
been abolished. This hospital is old, and of wood, and 
inquires reform in all its branches. At the same tinie 1 
must admit, that I have seen many worse establiahmenta 
of the kind nearer home ; but there appears a disindina^ 
tion almost every where, both on the part of Government 
and private individuals, to promote and support public 


hospitals for the reception of theee marked vicdms of 

Near the Smolnoi Convent there is a gigantic Establish- 
ment much on the scale and plan of the Bicdtre, and Sal- 
petriere, of I^aris^ for incurable diseases, octogenarians, 
and widows, in which upwards of 1400 people of both 
sexes are collected in wards, kept exceedingly clean, well 
ventilated, and in the best order imaginable. It is a very 
creditable institution, and managed with great judgment 
and humanity. Dr. Arendt and myself went over tbe 
whole establishment with the resident Phvsician and Ec&^ 
MMie, the latter of whom is an Italian ; and I derived 
considerable satisfacticm from every thing I saw. Several 
women, upwards of one hundred years old, were pointed 
out to me, prolonging a comfortable existence. There 
is connected with this institution a species of house of 
correction, in which the prisoners are made to do service 
at the former. This establishment is called the fiogodelnia, 

I fear that from all that I have said on the subject of 
civil hospitals in St. Petersburgh, my readers will be apt 
to entertain an opinion that those establishments are not 
on as good a footing as the Military hospitals. This would 
be true as a general assertion, were it not for the existence 
of one Civil Hospital which remains yet to be described, and 
which alone is capable of redeeming the character of supe- 
riority of the Civil over the Military Establishments. The 
hospital to which I allude is called ^' H6pital Imperial des 
pauvres Malades, (Bolnitza dlia Bednikh)"* founded in 1803, 
by the late Emperor Alexander, at the suggestion and 
after the plan of her Majesty the Empress-mother, who 
having remarked the insufficiency of the existing hospitals 
of St. Petersburgh, in relieving all those who stood in need 
of medical aid among the poorer classes, with that spirit 
of philanthropy by which we have seen her to be distih- 



guidsed, proposed to employ the excess of capital ariAug 
from the revenue of another charitable institution, under 
her patronage and direction^ to the creation of an hoBptal 
for the poor. 

The situation of this hospital is in the Rue de la 
Fonderie, not far from the Nevskoi Frospekt. The front, 
which is sixty feet long, is separated from the street by m 
open court enclosed by an iron palisade, and has a very 
handsome octostyle portico of ccdossal dimensions. The 
elevation is composed of a sub-basement ^tory, partly sunk, 
with a high basement and a principal story. OD.esck 
side, but at sooie distance from the main building, tkeie 
is a large house (or the residence of 4he oflBoers €i the 
Establishment, beyond which .there are several offices. 
Behind the main building, a garden, measuring twenty- 
two acres, laid out in walks and shrubberies, forms a 
convenient place for exarcise and recreation to the eon- 
valescent. The portico leads to a vestibule whidi sepa- 
rates the female from the male side of the hospital. 

In the sub'baaement story the apartments are vaulted, and 
serve for the different purposes of housekeeping, cooking, 
store-rooms, bakehouse, and the wardrobe, where the dreaies 
belonging to the patients are deposited. At each extremitj 
there are warm and cold baths. It struck me that the 
passages in this part of the building were damp and some 
of the offices dark. Most of the servants of the establish* 
ment are lodged there. The basement story, which is seven* 
teen feet and a half high to the ceiling, consists of the suigi* 
cal and convalescent wards ; those in which patients are kept 
who have undergone important surgical operati(Nis; and 
the receiving-room and the dispensing-room. All these are 
distributed on each side of a long corridor. In the piinei- 
pal story the wards for internal or medical diseases are ar- 
ranged likewise on each side of a Icmg and wide corridor, 
lighted by a large window placed at each extremity. Tbe 


deration of the medical wards ia twenty-one feet* There 
are in the two stories twenty-eight wards and two hundred 
and forty beds ; but as the patients admitted seldom ex- 
ceed two hundred and twenty, it follows that there are 
alirays a eertain number of beds vacant for cases of erner* 
geQcy. The communications between the two stories and 
the Buh-basement are placed at the two external ends of the 
institution. By means of this interior arrangement, and ow- 
ii^to the existence of the corridor already mentioned, which 
extends horn one extremity of the building to the other, 
a most perfect state of ventilation is kept up in every part 
of the edifice, — a ventilation of which the wards themselves 
partake, by means of the doors that lead into them, as well 
as throu^ the movable fanlights placed above the doors. 
These fanlights also serve to add to the lighting of the cor* 
ridor. In no other hospital has the system of ventilation 
been carried to greater perfection than in this ; for indepen- 
dently of the measure just noticed, there is in each ward 
a coDtrivaDoe in the upper part of one c^ the windows 
for letting Mr in and out Tubes communicating with the 
external air are placed within the walls; and besides a 
stove, according to the Russian method of heating rooms, 
there is a French chimney, which is heated in the more 
usual way, alternately with the other, for the purpose 
of establishing a wholesome current in case of necessity 
The result of all this i^ that on enteriug the hospital, or 
any of its wards, one is not in the smallest degree sen« 
sible of any offensive smell or close atmosphere: add to 
tUfl^ that the degree of cleanliness pervading every part is 
4itite extraordinary, and that the walls are frequently 
whitewaahed, and the floors scoured and kept very dean. 

The objectum which I advanced against those length- 
aoed avenuea or perspectives, under the name of wards, 
whidi exist in the hospital Obuchoff, and in the French 

u 2 


and some other Continental hospitals, does not apply to this 
institution. Better sense presided at its erection; and in 
their stead capacious rooms have been p]X)Yided, containing 
only from twelve to fifteen beds, placed at a considerable dis- 
tance from each other. This distribution of rooms admits 
of a similar distribution of cases of disease ; so that in 
no instance are infectious disorders mixed with those that 
are not so, or cases of aggravated malady associated with 
those of a milder description. 

The system of admission adopted at this hospital is per- 
fectly in character with its original purpose of benevolence, 
and exclusive assistance to the poorer classes. Sailors, 
soldiers, insane persons, Iying*in women, persons afflicted 
with acknowledged chronic disorders, or other complaints 
the result of debauchery, and gentlemen's servants, are not 
received on any account. Each of these has been provided 
with proper means of medical assistance in other institu- 
tions, and have no claim to occupy a place destined to far 
more necessitous objects. The poor of every other descrip- 
tion are admitted without any ceremony, on the ground only 
of their poverty, and on simply exhibiting their passport 
with which people of the lower classes should always be 

It is the physician in chief who determines the admis- 
sibility of patients ; and before they are sent to the wards 
they are put into a bath, washed and attired in the hos- 
pital dress, which is of wool in winter, and of a light linen 
cloth in summer, both of which are frequently changed. 

I visited, one by one, all the medical and surgical wards, 
as well as every^ other part of the hospital, particularly the 
Pharmacies which was newly finished, and is in the best or- 
der imaginable. Dr. Ruhl, who was kind enough to escort 
me, explained to me the manner in which the patients are 
treated, and the mode of keeping an account of the progress 
of the complaint in a paper written in Latin, left at the head 


of the bed of each patient, in which are also inscribed, as 
veil as on a shite suspended above the bed, the number of 
the bed, the name of the patient and date of admission, and 
the nature of the complaint. The bedsteads are of iron 
with a palliasse, a horse-hair mattress, two pillows, sheets 
of fine linen, and a coverlet. 

The patients are visited twice a day, early in the morn- 
ing and in the evening. They are nursed by females, 
wearing a particular dress and a cross, called Veuves de la 
CharUiy taken from another institution founded by the 
Empress-mother, in behalf of the widows of officers, who 
have been left in indigent circumstances, and whom that 
most excellent-hearted Princess has assembled, lodged and 
fed, in a part of the Smolnoi' Convent. Those only amongst 
them are employed for this service of charity, who volun« 
tarfly offer to do it ; and for that service they not only re- 
ceive both pecuniary and honorary recompense, but are 
more distinguished than the rest These nurses are par- 
ticularly useful, and answer the purpose of the Scturs de la 
Charitij to be seen in the French hospitals. The happy 
idea of establishing a class of women who profess to soothe 
and take care of the afflicted sick poor, and of patients in 
general, is due to the Empress-mother, as no professed 
sick nurse till then existed in St Fetersburgh. 

Independently of the in-patients, this hospital admits, 
in the manner of our Dispensaries, out-patients ; the total 
number of which last year is said to have amounted to 

An English surgeon, Mr. Beverly, is attached to this 
hospital, in the capacity of consulting and operative sur- 
geon.- He enjoys a well-merited reputation. 

The funds of this hospital amount to two millions of 
roubles, lent to the Lombard at an interest of six per cent, 
besides which it has some other resources. The annual ex- 
penses of the establishment vary from one hundred to one 


kuadred and thirty thoataad roabks. An excellent prac 
tice» worthy of beii^ imiutcd, obtains in this hospttaL In* 
dividualfl who are charitably disposed, may found one or 
more beds for patients, to be recommended by them on 
paying a fixed annual sum to that effect. Prince Akx* 
ander Kourakine, and a merchant named Pickkr,. have 
each founded a bed in this manner with the penmsaion of 
the Empress. Another was estabHshed by an anonymous 
indiTidualy who presented the hospital with a capital of 
50,000 roubles for that purpose. 

I haye elsewhere stated, that the Empress superintendB 
in person all her charitable establishments, and receives ins 
direct manner, either from the Physician-io-Chief, or, as in 
the present case, from a nobleman who is named by her- 
self, and acts gratuitously under the title of Honorary 
Guardian, the reports of the daily proceedings, as well 
as the monthly reports, making appropriate remarks there- 
on, and suggesting corrections or improvements* as may be 
required. In addition to this assiduous attention to the 
welfare of bei* hospital, her Majesty pays fi:equent visits 
to the establishment,— sometimes twice, at others, three 
times a week. These are not. visits of ostentation. Her 
Majesty makes her appearance without being prevtooslj 
announced ; inspects the wards, inquires into the cases of 
several of the poor patients, and converses with some ct 
them ; endeavouring by her exalted example of devotion to 
their cause, to inspire them with confidence and comfort* 
while she stimulates every person employed in their service, 
to act with vigilance and philanthropy. 

This is not the place to enter into any medical discusttoa 
as to the treatment of diseases which I observed in this 
hospital ; nor to discourse on the results obtained in so 
well-conducted and magnificent an establishment of m^ 
dical charity. In general, I must say, that the medi^ 
practice appeared to diSer very little Arom that observed 


in the other hospitals of the capital^ and that the rate of 
mortality appeared to me to have been, on an average <^ 
tm years, much higher than in other European hospitals, 
and nearly double that of our English hospitals. It is but 
justice to say, at the same time, that the rate in question 
is taken from the tables of the first four years of the insti- 
tution, and that probably improved methods of treatment 
have since diminished it. On the latter point, however, 
I have had no means of obtaining the necessary in* 
formation for drawing a correct conclusion. Nor is this 
high* rate of mortality confined alone to the hospital just 
described ; but is common to the other civil hospitals, and 
precisely such as I should expect from the nature of the 
treatment. As I. once before observed, I am in want of 
sufficient data to form an accurate idea of that rate in the 
other civil hospitals of St. Petersburgh. But that it is 
greater than in the hospitals of this country, I have a right 
to assume, from the official statements of the result of prac- 
tice in 1811 and 181S, published by Mons. Hermann in 
the ninth volume of the Memcnrs of the Academy of 
Sciences of St. Petersburgh, where it appears that the ave- 
rage mortality in the two principal civil hospitals for those 
two years, waa eighteen and a half per cent.« or triple what it 
is in Lmidoii. An idea also may be formed of what is conri- 
dered a successful result of practice in that capital, from the 
opinion c^ the same writer expressed in the following man- 
ner:— *' Nous admettons que le dixi^me meurt en r^gle 
dans un fiopital bien administr6, oi^ il n^y a point de ma- 
]ad]e oonlagieuse.'' Now I must say, that an hospital in 
winch sueh a mortality takes place en regk (as a matter 
of course) cannpt be ** bien administr6 ;^ but something 
wrong must necessarily exist somewhere, in regard to the 
tieatment of diseases. From another table on which I 
can lely, and which is for the year 1818, I $n4 that 
out of 9590 deaths, which occurred in that year in St. 


Petersburghy 1SZ60, or one in little less tban four, Acre 
children, and sixty-two (!) from diild^-bed.* 

The Maison des En/an trouvia at St Petersbnrgh is* 
next to that of Moscow, probably the most extensiire, and 
certainly the best managed, of the kind in Europe. This 
building, or buildings rather, for there are several clns- 
tered together, in which the foundlings are received, with- 
out being very striking in their appearance, as the pre- 
ceding institution is, may, nevertheless^ boast of great extent 
and simplicity. Good order, great cleanliness, and the strict- 
est discipline among the nurses, prevail in it. Afflicting, as 
the idea must be of beholding hundreds of young babes 
deserted by their parents, collected together and taken 

* The mortality of children in St. Fetersbutgh is very considerdUe : 
indeed far greater than in any other capital in Europe ; and this I 
must ascribe to the want of a proper school, wherein their diseases, 
so peculiar in their nature, and requiring so distinct a treatment, should 
be taught by physicians themselves, well verged in sacfa matters. 
Even London ^was, till within the last ten years, far behind other dtiss 
on the Continent in this respect The treatment of infantile com- 
plaints was acknowledged to be deficient, but the establishment of tfas 
present infirmaries for sick children has done a great deal, and tnay 
do still more, in improving that treatment ; rendering it more rs- 
tional, and consequently more successful. St. Petersbiugh requires 
simUar institutions even more than London; for, on the subject of 
children's complaints, professional skill, I must say, seemed consider- 
ably at fault. I have heard of one or two distinguished fiunilies 
losing one child after another of the same complaint, without the least 
attempt being made by the physician to improve a system of treat- 
ment which had proved so unavailable. Compared to the tahks of 
mortality of sick children at the Royal Metropolitan Lufirmaiy in 
London, that of St. Petersburgh (if report speaks truly) is really 
frightful. " Les enfans qui nous restent, (repeated to me a veneraUs 
Russian nobleman more than once), doivent £tre, au moins, de for et 
invulnerables puisqu'ils ont echapp^ les effete d'un afireuz dimat, el 
les mauvais m^dedns." Should the Emj>re8B>mother establish an 
hosf^tal for rick children, she will confer a real blesaing on the 


oare of by strangen, itis consoling to see how much may be 
d<me to alleviate a destiny marked by hardship, cruelty, 
and injuatife, from the first hour of their birth. The want 
of natural parents to a child could not be better supplied 
than by the regulations of this curious and interesting 
institution, which has been under the immediate super-* 
intendence of the Empress-mother for the last thirty years. 
No Sovereign, it may be boldly advanced, has done more 
for hutnanity in this particular department of charity than 
this princess. If any thing can excuse the necessity of such- 
an establishment, it is, doubtlessly, the manner in which that' 
of St. Petersburgh is kept by direction of her Majesty. 

Aii idea may be formed of the number of children ad- 
mitted annually, by this fact, that while I was standing 
within the lodge of the j»or/fer, or person deputed to receive 
them» on the 12th of November, two newly born babes 
were brought to him, which made the total number admit- 
ted on the register in that year, and up to that day, 8554 ; 
and alao, that at the time of my visit there were not 
fewer than 466 children at the breast in the house. Some 
of these are brought from the lying-in department of the 
institution adjoining the establishment, in which every 
female who presents herself in the last stage of pregnancy 
is admitted without the least question being asked, and may 
even wear a mask if she desires it To this part of the 
estaUidiment no stranger is very properly admitted. Dr. 
Southoff, physician in ordinary and accoucheur, in the 
service of the Imperial Family, superintends the Ly- 
in^in Establishment, and resides in an adjoining house: 
This gentleman instructs in midwifery sixty young fe^ 
males, who are taken from the class of foundlings, remain 
in constant attendance on the patients, and, oii being 
properly qualified, are sent, by order of the Empress, to 
different parts of Russia. This excellent arrangement is 
another valuable boon for which the nation, and particular- 


ly the country people, are indebted to that princess. Theie 
were no regularly instructed midwifea before to be found in 
Ruasitt, as is pretty nearly the case to this day in England, 
much to the surprise of every weU-wisher to this countrj. 

I thought the treatment adopted in cases of illnessi 
and the general management of the children, far supoior 
to what I have had frequeat opportunity of seeing in the 
Hospital of Enfans Trouv6s, at Paris. Notwithstanding 
which, I was sorry to learn from Doctor Eiihlweir, the 
superintending physician, that the mortality among the 
children, within the first six weeks, is from thirty to forty 
per cent The children are all brought up at the breast, and 
the wet-nurses appeared to me to be very healthy* They 
are allowed good pay, and a liberal diet. Sometimes the 
mothers, who have lain in at the Lying-in EstabUshment, 
will carry their own children into the foundling, and remain 
in it to nurse them, in which case they are piud as other wet- 
nurses, and no questions, not even names, are ever asked. 

When a child is brought for admission, a declaration ia 
writing generally accompanies it, setting forth the day of 
the birth, the name given, and whether it has been bap- 
tised. These particulars are entered in a register, to- 
gether with a description of the dress, and any mark which 
there' may happen to be on the child's body. A counterpart 
of this register, with the corresponding number written on 
stamped paper, and signed by the Secretary, is delivered to 
the bearer of the child, around the neck of which the por- 
ter proceeds immediately to place a jnece of ivory, sus- 
pended by a ribbon, which is fastened by a leaden seal, and 
is worn by the girls until twenty, and by the boys until 
twenty-two years of age, to show that they are under the 
protection of this establishmait. 

There are connected with this institution two other 
principal establishments, not of a medical nature, which 
I shall have ocpasion to describe shortly ; and even in tht 


central department d the institution there are sub-divi- 
sions of the greatest importance, for a more particular 
account of which I have no room, neither is this a fil 
opportunity to enter upon them. 

The funds of this yast establishment which I have thus 
sBghtly touched upon, are derived from a variety of 
sources; but the principal one is the Voluntary Loan 


Bank, or Lombard, which produces an immense income, 
as will be seen hereafter. 

There is a second Lying-in Institution in St Peters- 
burgh, supported entirely by the Empress-mother, con« 
laimi^ about thirty beds, which, both with regard to the 
building, furniture, deaidiness, internal arrangement, the 
handscnne curtained beds, the attendance of a nurse to 
each patient, the exoeUenoe of the diet, and the care taken of 
the child, may be better compared to the lying-in chamber 
of a great lady, than to an hospital. This institution is 
strictly intended for married women, who must certify that 
they are so, and in indifferent circumstances. Dr. Southoff 
was obliging enough to introduce and show me this noble 
establishment, in all its parts. I observed about twenty 
young females, who reside in the house and act as nurso, 
w^fiiie they receive instruction in midwifery. It is a 
curious fact, highly creditable to the married women of 
the inferior classes at St Petersburgh, that' with all the 
luxuries of such an institution freely open to them, Qot 
more than from 600 to 600 patients apply for admission in 
the course of the twelve months. I speak without in the 
least wishing to exaggerate, when I assert, that it would be 
impossible to find a parallel establishment with this any. 
where. I am almost inclined to think that too much has 
been done for it. What a sad contrast it must be to the 
really poor married woman, who has been lying-in in such 
a palace, with such an attendance, and in such linen, to 
retom to bar abject fireside ! 


But I feel that I am trespassing too far on the patience 
of my general readers, and forget the declaration with 
which I set out at the beginning of the present chapter. I 
meant to have said a word or two on the present state of 
vaccination in St. Petersburgh — on the recent and flou* 
rishing establishment for the treatment of diseases of the 
eyes, a class of complaints exceedingly prevalent in St. Pe- 
tersburgh — on the manufacturing of surgical instruments 
for the army and navy by an Englishman, of the name of 
Brown, whose manufactory, on a large scale, I visited, 1ind 
examined with great attention, although not with an un- 
mixed degree of satisfaction. But I must abandon the idea 
altogether, and proceed to other matters, unless I mean 
to add a third volume, ^^ quod Jupiter advertat.'^ At the 
same time I am bound to declare, that the Infirmary for 
the Diseases of the Eyes deserves more than a mere super- 
ficial mention of its name. This institution owes its origin, 
I have reason to believe, to the suggestion of some young 
Russian surgeons, whom I have already named, and who 
studied for some time in this country, at the expense of the 
late Emperor. It has been opened about three years, and 
was supported from its very outset by the whole of the 
Imperial Family. The Empress-mother, again foremost jn 
every act of charity, ordered an annual sum from her 
privy purse of 5000 roubles^to be paid in aid of its funds, 
and another amiable princess, the Grand-duchess Helena, 
with corresponding liberality, assigned 500 roubles a year 
to it. In a very few months the donations amounted to 
S0,000 roubles, and the income to 5000. The progresnve 
increase of its operations and income, during the short 
space of time that has elapsed since its origin, is quite ex- 
traordinary in the annals of medical charities, and speaks 
volumes in favour of the philanthropic spirit of its sup- 
porters. In the second year of its existence, from May 
1825 to the same month in 18S6, the received inooBie 


amounted to 48,784 roubles^ and the expenditure to 8282 
roubles. The number of patients treated was 11,783, of 
whom 8853 were new, and 278 were admitted as in* 
patients. The number of important operations, perfonned 
during that period, was 464. The Emperor, after this, grant- 
ed a sum of 40,000 roubles from the surplus of the subscrip- 
tions, in behalf of those who had suffered during the inunda* 
tion ; and the total income, from May 1826 to the same 
month of the year following, was increased to 169,422 rou- 
bles, which enabled the directors to purchase the present 
house, on a much larger scale, and furnish it for the sum of 
184,277 roubles. In that same year they treated 15,079 
patients, 4794 of whom were new, 840 were lodged and 
boarded in the house, and 445 important operations were 

As for the subject of vaccination in the Russian capitietl, 
it is one into which I could not but feel anxious to inquire 
during my stay in that city, from the circumstance of 
being myself connected with an important institution in 
London, in which that practice forms a prominent feature. 
I was therefore delighted to find that vaccination, under 
the auspices of the Imperial Economical Society, is making 
rapid progress in that city, and, through the exertions 
of the same society, in other parts of the empire. From 
the time that the society first undertook the superintend* 
ence of that practice down to October 1827, 1,009,276 
children had been vaccinated through their means. The 
Emperor, as an encouragement and mark of approbation of 
their proceedings, was pleased to grant them the sum of 
26,000 roubles, in aid of the funds formed by subscription 
for that particular object, and ordered that gold and silver 
medals should be struck and distributed, as well as pecu- 
niary rewards, to those persons who may appear to have 
exerted themselves most in propagating the application of 
that valuable discovery in his dominions. 





CoBunercuJ and other ErtahliahmenitB of Indnttry aad their Builds 

ingB. — The Imperial Ezchanok. — The Roetral Colamiis. — The 

first Foreign Ship at St. Petershurgh. — Peter the Great and tiie 

Dntdi Skipper. — Inauguration of the Neir Exchange. — AAbffltjr 

and Condesoenaien of Alexander the Fif«l towarda the EngUdi 

Merchants* — New imperial Warehouses. — Custom Hoose.— 

Navigation of Merchant Vessels up the Neva. — Numher of Veswls 

entered at St. Petersburgh in 1897. — Amount of Tennage lor 

that Year. — Ijists of Imports and Exports for the last ten years. 

— - Balance of Export Trade in favour of Russia. — Cieneral value 

of Com exported in 1836 and 1897. — Custom-house Revenue^ 

during the last six yean. — Steady increase of it every year. — 

Number of Vessehi entered and cleared, classed aooording to Nations. 

—Decrease in those belonging to England. — Mercantile Spirit and 

Industry of the Rnssians. — Interior Navigation. — Canal between 

St. Petersburgh and Moscow. — A Curious Discovery. — Peter the 

Great and the noted financier. Law. ^- Proposed Asiatic Trade 

Company. •* Imperial Mamifaetories. «-- Platb Glass Zavob. — 

Colossal Mirror for the Duke of Wellington.~C:ryBtal Bed for the 

Shah of Persia. — FaxfobovoI Zavod, or China and Porcelain 

Manufactory. — Alexandrowsky. — General Wilson. — Engiirii 

and American Machinery imitated in Roesia*-^otton ManufMtery. 

-^ Profit from the Manufactory of Playing-cards Discipline and 

treatment of the Foundlings employed at Alexandrowsky. — The 
KoLpiNSKol Zavod. — Coins. — Paper Currency. — Mons. Can- 
CRiN*8 opinions on that subject. — Amount of Bank Notefe) in 
Rmna. —The AbsionatsiommoI Bamtk. — Revenue of Ruada.— 
National Debt. — Amount of Annual Redemption. — The Loav 
Eakk. -~The Commercial Bank. — The Lombard. 

That Russia is a great commercial notion, Teqtnres no 
demonstration. That St. Peterdburgh has become wfaaC 


its Bi^aeioas founder intended it to be, the emporium of 
Russian commerce with Europe, in the short space of 
litde more than a century, is equally manifest. A visit to 
that city, however short, will convince every stranger of 
both these fiK^ts. He will there also acquire a knowledge 
of the immense extent of traffic carried on in the interior 
of the country, of the means adopted for encouraging it, 
and of the ntonner in. which the Government seems disposed 
to favour it on purely national principles. Russia is per- 
haps the only country of sudb an extent which, without 
exportable manufactures, can carry on^ year after year, 
an increasing import and export trade, the active balance 
of which is invariably in her favour. 

But with the more general question of Russian trade 
I can have nodiing to do ; my task is much more simple, 
and must be confined to the observations I made during 
my short stay in St Petersburgh on the buildings and a 
few of the institutions in that dtyj that have a reference to 
commerce. In regard to the former the Imperial Ex- 
change first claims our attention. To its situation on 
the eastern point of the Vassileiostroff I have already 
alluded. The building was finished in 1811 after the plans 
of Monsieur Tonon, a French architect of great merits 
but was not opened until the year 1816. Commerce was 
not likely to flourish during the eventful period that 
eli^psed between the former and the latter of these dates. 
The building is in the form of a parallelogram, fifty-five 
toises long, forty-one wide, and fifteen high. A noUe pe- 
ristyle, of forty*four columns of the Doric order, surrounds 
it, forming an open gallery or piazza, raised on a stylobat^ 
of considerable height, to which a very wide and bold flight 
of stqw in front and at the back of the building a£Pords an 
easy ascent. The interior consists of a single hall, 1^ 
feet long, and sixty-six wide, ornamented with emblema- 


tical sculptures, of colossal dimensions, lighted from above, 
and warmed by four stoves placed in symmetrical order, 
so as to form corresponding embellishments to the room. 
There are four entrances into the hall, and on each side 
of these, two smaller chambers serve for a variety of pur- 
poses connected with the establishment. Altogether the 
interior of this beautiful building is very striking, and only 
inferior to the new Bourse at Paris. In this place the 
Russian and foreign merchants meet daily at three o'clock^ 
and as a French traveller has well observed, ** Li le moiD- 
dre mouvement est calcule, le moindre geste a son prix, 
le moindre sourire, doit rapporter quelque chose.'* 

The Exchange is insulated on all sides; a very hand- 
some semicircular open space lies in front of it, terminated 
by a granite quay, with two circular descents to the water's 
edge ; and at each extremity rise the two colossal rostral 
columns already alluded to, composed of granite, onuu 
mented with allegorical statues in bronze at their bases; the 
shaft interspersed with representations of the prows of 
vessels of the same metal projecting considerably ; deco- 
rated with the emblems of trade, and surmounted by a 
group of three figures of Atlas, bearing hollow seroi-globes, 
which are intended to receive fires on every occasion of 
public illumination. 

It is well known how the Imperial Reformer of Russia 
received the first foreign vessel which arrived here in 1T03. 
Dressed in a sailor's garb, and accompanied by the lords of 
his suite similarly clothed, the Emperor went to meet her 
in a boat, and piloted her from Cronstadt to St. Peters- 
burgh, near to the very spot on which stands the New Ex- 
change. The Governor of the town, Prince Menschikoff, 
received with great pomp the skipper and the ; pilot and 
the surprise of the former must have been considerable, 
when, at the repast which followed his arrival, he recog- 


in his skilful conductor, Peter himself, the Sovere%n 
of the country, who wished thus to hail commerce to the 
abores of his new empire. 

An equal degree of consideration for those who are en- 
gaged in commerce, was manifested by the late Soiree 
reign in a like condescending manner. On the laying 
of the foundation stone of the New Exchange, Aleximder 
took the opportunity of conferring a most honourable and 
flattering distinction on the British merchants resident in, 
and trading to St. Petersburgh. He. attended' the cere- 
mony, and every English merchant in the place was in- 
vited. * The first stone of the projected structure was laid 
with due scdemnity ; and when the ceremony was concluded, 
his Majesty requested the attendance of the English mer- 
chants at a splendid entertainment, given upon an event 
floaus[ricious to the country. The Emperor pr^ided in 
person, and condescended to perform the honours of the 
feast. He deported himself with such easy and familiar 
conviviality, that his English guests might have imagined 
Chomselves seated at the hospitable board of their most 
intimate friend.* After numerous toasts had gone round, 
and success had been drunk to the new undertaking, his 
Majesty unfolded a packet containing a quantity of gold 
medals, each equal to about six guineas in weight, on one 
aide of which was the bust of the Emperor, a striking and 
aociirate likeness ; and on the reverse, the elevation of the 
Imperial Exchange, precisely as it now stands. His Majesty 
presented one with his own hands to every British merchant, 
in the possession of some of whom I had the pleasure of see- 
ing the medal, and desired them at the same time to pre- 
serve it as a memorial of his respect for the first commer- 
dal nation in the world, and as an indication of that strict 

* See ** Anecdotes iUuBtrative of the Character of Alexander^ Em* 
psiw of Rusria.'* New Month. Mag. 1813. 


which it wai hii wish to manifest towards Eng- 


New and very extensive magaaines, buUt in exodkat 
taste, and with a solidity that will defy the elemeats for 
a^s to come, have been erected at some distance on esdi 
side of the Exchange. These are intended to receive the 
troasit goods from foreign countries, as well as those tor 
the consumption of the capital, on whidi a duty is levied. 
The merchants stood greatly in need of this additional 
aooommodation, as the Imperial warehouses of the Custon- 
faouse, situated not far from the Exchange, and of which I 
have given a short account elsewhere, were insufficient to 
the rapidly increasing trade of this metropolis. Theax are 
two sets of such magazines on each side. They have a base^ 
ment and a principal story. The elevation of the former b 
fifteen feet, arched over, and protected from the small- 
est degree of humidity. That of the latter is twenty- 
eight feet, and will contain from S50 to 800 poods of 
sugar, (10,8001bs.) One of these buildings is 210 feet 
Icmg, and thirty feet wide ; the other is only fifty fieet in 
length, and twenty-five feet wide, being like the fermer 
divided into two stories, the upper of which is internally 
surrounded by a gallery, for the purpose of faoilitating the 
exposition of merchandise of Russian manu&ctuie. These 
buildings are constructed in such a manner, that even their 
basement and sub-basement stories will not be exposed to 
the effects of inundi^on. 

All vessels on their arrival undergo a strict examinaliaii, 
bot^ at Cronstadt and St. Petersbuigfa, and are oUiged to 
unload at the Custom-house. To diat part of the river there* 
fore must the vessels be piloted, through a rather intrioate 
navigation, owing to the different depths, and the shallows 
of the Neva. It is a curious fact, that the masters of ves- 
sels, or any persons on boards are not allowed to lake sound- 


iBffl eitber od their way up or down the river. Ships 
whieb have an inward bound cargo, are allowed to pass 
tbroagb aar opening xnatde in the centre of the Isaac bridge, 
hf_ r^tmng two of the pontons. This operation takes 
place oidy at night, and the charge for each ship is ten 
roubles. The species of harbour m which these ships are 
seoeived, opposite the fine quay of the Custom-house and 
ftxebaoge, is commiodious, and properly sheltered. Vessels 
drawing not More than seventeen feet of water, from all 
parts of tbe gtebe, are to be seen safely moored at the en- 
trance of the lesser Neva, between (he VassileiostroiF and 
the Island of St. Petersburgh. 

An ideac may be formed of the extent and importance 
of the trade of St. Petersburgh, from the number of vessels 
which had arrived in that port during the year in which 
I virfted it (1827). These amounted to 1^7, making 
a total of tonnage equal to 11S,464|. Of this numbei^ 
forty-one wintered at St. Petersburgh; 118 made two 
voyages in the course of the year ; nineteen three, and one 
ship four voyages. The first vessel entered on the 25th of 
April, rather an early date, and the last left on the 17th 
of November. The principal articles imported were cot- 
tad and oolbniai produce, as will be seen by inspecting the 
official return of last year, which I have inserted in the 
Appendix at f^illl lengthy t(^ther with those of the years 
preceding, beginning with 1816, in order that a compari. 
son nay be made belrween them of the progressive increase 
of the trade of St. Petersburgh. I have done the same 
iking with regard to the exports ; but on this point I have 
only been able to obtain documents for the last four years. 
By comparing the sum total of exports with that of the im- 
parled goods during any one year, it will be seen that acon- 
flideraMfe balance exists in favour of that Capital. Indeed 
this is the case at present with respect to the general export 

X 2 


aAd import trade of Russia. According to the Statistical 
Tables lately published by Weydemeyeri the export tnik 
of Russia in Europe amounted in 18S5 to 221,688,802 B. 
and the import trade in the same year 16S»822,497 B. 

Leaving a balance in favour of . 58,215,805 B. 
This general balance in favour of Russia is farther 
confirmed by a table published by the Ministry of Finaooe, 
which presents a comparative statement of the value of the 
Import and Export trade of the whole Empire, in the 
course of the first six months of 1826 and 1827, as fol- 
lows : 

Import vakte. Esepart value. 

1826. 1827. 

Ist half. your. Ist half-year. 

la Merchandise 77,878^559 83,957,390 

In Money & Ingots 8,253,184 5,894,788 

Total...r..80,131,743 89,858,108 

1826. 18S7. 

Ut half-year, lithalf-yev. 

In Rasrian prodnee 

69,495,395 107,4S7,$40 

3,868,808 8j855,SS4 

73,363,603 109,682,974 

From which table it appears that the value 
of foreign Merchandise, &c. imported in 
the first half-year of 1826 and 1827, 
amounted to ^ . . . . 169,988,861 B. 

and that of Russian Produce and Mer- 
chandise exported, to . . . 188,046,577 B. 

Leaving a net balance in favour of Russia 18,062,726 B. 

From another equally official Report, respecting Com 
alone, the value of the quantity exported from St Peters- 
burgh and the other ports of Russia, as well as through 
the Land Frontiers, during the first six months of 18X7) 
appears to have been more than three times as much as 
in the same period of 1826. 


In the year 1887 ) . , f 21,214,688 E. 

In the preceding year J 1 6,095,4f55 IL 

Here are some elements of calculation for those who 
naturally and from professional habits must take an inte- 
rest in the great question of international trade. One great 
cxmdusion from all these statements is evident, namely, 
that Russia is very properly taking care of herself, and 
that she is steadily pursuing the same path of improvement 
in regard to her commercial resources, which she has been 
treading for some years, and is now following, more than 
ever, in respect td political and military questions, as well as 
in general civilization. 

The yearly increase of the Custom-house revenue at St. 
Petersburgh, shows likewise the increased activity of its 
commerce. The inspection of the following numerical 
oalumns will prove it. 

Yean, EovNes, Kopeela, 

1822—21,688,984 14| 

1823—22,866,841 48| 

1824—26,984,551 67f 

1826—30,026,982 98i 

1826—81,607,474 17 
and in 1827-84,433,490 80 
In the course of the last six years, therefore, this branch 
of the National Revenue, at St. Petersburgh alone, has 
increased 12,794,556 roubles and 15 kopeeks, or conside- 
rably more than one-half above what it was in 1822. 

Notwithstanding the evident increase of Custom-house 
revenue in the year 1826 beyond that of the preceding 
year, it is curious that the number of vessels which ar- 
rived at St. Petersburgh in those two years stand in an 
inverse ratio to that increase ; that number having been 
1968 in 1825, and only 957 in 1826. As the question of 
British shipping connected with the Baltic trade has just 



been canvassed amojig persons most interested in it and 
those who support the present system of free com- 
moroe) my readers will pardon me for iosertiBg in tlus 
place an official list, published under the auspices of the 
Minister of Finance, of the number of vesseb of esdi 
nation which arrived at St. Petersburgh in the course of 
those two years, from which it will be seen, that from mine 
cause or other, the number of those belonging to this coun- 
try diminished in the second year from that to which they 
amounted in the former of those years, by more than two- 
thirds. I wish I had been able to procure a similar list 
for 1827 ; but I left the country before it could be made 
up. The following, however, is in itself an important 

Number of vesBels according entered, 
to nation. ^^_ ^ _^ 

1825. 10M. 

English 801 































cleared out 

1825. 1826. 























1954 94^ 

The reader, howerer, will not fail to remark, that aldioi^ 


the number of English ships decreased in 1826, that of 
other nations does not appear to ha^e increased in propor- 
tiooy naj some, as the American ships for instance, have 
also diminished. 

The inland navigation of Russia is another means by 
which the trade cf St. Petersburgh is gready promoted^ 
and on which it in a great measure depends. The fad*- 
lities of water communication which exist in Russia are 
not only extensive, but, it is said, perfect models of th^ 
kind. From a statement published by the Board of 
*' Roads and Communications,'' it appears that the inland 
navigation to and from St. Petersburgh alone, stood in the 
following ratios, during the years thereto annexed : — 

Thoe arrived at St. Pe- 

tenbargli in 




From the interior. 

Vessels, barges, galfiots. 

&C. loaded 




in ballast.. 


Floalfl, or rafts, of fire 

and other wood 
Total Talue of the car- 
goes imported 




1S3,1 80,698 r. 

108,830,028 r. 

73,361,107 r. 

Ldk St Petersbaxg, for 

the interior. 


with cargoes . . 




Total Talue of the car- • 
goes exported 




21,833,448 r. 

12,376,157 r. 

14,760,002 r. 

mie calculated value contained in the above table, changed 
into English money, gives a result for the total import in- 
land trade at St. Petersburgh, for the three years ante- 
cedent to 1827» a 14,146,998/. sterling. Now most of this 
inland trade, and the greater part of the foreign trade, is 


chiefly carried on by commissioii, and is principally in the 
bands of foreign mercantile houses, of the first respectabi- 
lity, settled at St. Petersburgh, among which the Eng- 
lish are the most numerous, amounting, I believe, to 
twenty-nine. The Russian merchants, from the interior, 
▼isit St. Petersburgh at stated periods, and enter* into 
certain contracts for the sale of their produce with the 
factors, engaging to deliver the goods according to the 
specification of the agreement, and sometimes reoeiviDg 
half or the whole of the purchaseumoney, although the 
goods are probably not to be delivered till the following 
spring, or summer, by the inland navigation. On their ar- 
rival, the quality is iqspected by sworn sorters, and eom- 
pared with the description mentioned in the agreement. On 
the other hand, the Russian merchants, to whose order 
the import goods from foreign countries come, receive 
them (HI condition of paying for them by instalments, 
of six or twelve months, and even Tor a longer period ; 
they are, therefore, paid for their exports beforehand, and 
buy such as are imported on credit. They run no risks 
by sea, are not annoyed by usurers and underwriters, still 
less with dealings at the Custom-house, and pocket their 
profits in the least troublesome manner imaginable. Tet 
it would be difficult, as the several gentlemen who afforded 
me the above and other mercantile information assured 
me, to name another nation more imbued with the spirit 
of trade, and remarkable for mercantile industry, than the 
Russians. Traffic is their darling pursuit: a common 
Russian, if he can but save a trifling sum of money, tries to 
become a merchant. He will sometimes begin even in the 
humbler capacity of hawker (Raznostchik),with the profits of 
which trade he hires and fits up a shop, (Lavka) where by 
lending small sums at large interest, profiting by the cour^ 
of exchange, and employing the other arts of traffic, be 


shortly becomes a man of more importance. He then 
buys and builds houses and shops to let out to other peo- 
ple, or to be fumi^ed by himself, putting in persons to 
manage them for small wages : and next launches into an 
extennve commerce, undertakes contracts with the Crown, 
or with the foreign merchants for deUveries of goods ; or 
goes about the country purchasing estates of persons of 
consequence, who from some cause or other are driven 
to the alternative of parting with the patrimony of their 
fathers. There have been numerous instances of the rapid 
success of such people ; and some of them were pointed 
out to me in St. Petersburgh, who although possessed of 
millions thus acquired from the very smallest and most 
.humble beginning, continued their traffic, wore the national 
costume and their long flowing beards, were seen driving 
along the streets in elegant equipages, and had some of 
the finest houses in the first and second quarters of the 
Admiralty. With all this talent and industry, however, 
on the part of a Russian merchant, it is seldom that any 
(xf them succeed in establishing themselves in the foreign 
commission trade. 

Having occasion to frequent the counting-house of a very 
respectable merchant, I was surprised to see some appa- 
rently common men ranging freely and uncontrolled about 
the house, opening drawers, taking out bills of exchange, 
carrying away money, and sometimes bringing it, without 
any apparent communication with, or notice on the part of, 
the principals. On inquiry, I found that these people 
belong to a class of crown peasants, or boors, from the 
vicinity of Archangel, and that they are intrusted in 
the capacity of porters* and factotums^ (artelschicks) by 
the English and other merchants, with all the property, 
money, and goods of their trade. They are the most 
faithful, and, as my informant said, integerrimi people on 


. the face of the earth, there having never been an ex- 
ample of any of them behaving dishoneHtly, although they 
are sent round to collect and pay money without a derk^ 
fearlessly and daily, often to the amount of twenty and 
thirty thousand pounds sterling in cash. These people 
come from thdr native district in parties, (arthels,) to the 
capital, and ofier thdr services to the English merchanU 
through the chief of their body, after whom the party or 
company is named. 

The great advantages which commerce has derived 
from the' navigation of the Volga, since that river has been 
made to communicate with the Neva, suggested the idea 
of establishing a canal between St. Petersburgfa and Mos- 
cow, which is to join the two rivers Sestra and Istra, the 
former of which communicates with the Volga by means 
of the river Doubna, and the latter discharges itself into 
the Moskwa. The original idea of this junction of the 
Moskwa with the Volga, belongs to Peter the Ghreat, and 
was not revived until the time of Alexander, who aj^roved 
of the plan presented to him a few years before his death. 
The works were begun in October 1826, and are now pitv 
ceeding rapidly towards their conclusion. The devaticm 
of the soil, which is to serve as the bed of this Junction 
Canal, is 888 feet above the level of the Moakwa, 2tf 
feet above the bank of the Volga, and forms part of the 
vast Plateau on which are found collected, almost near the 
same spot, the sources of the Western Dwina, the Dnieper, 
and the Volga, the waters of which descend into the Baltic, 
the Black, and the Caspian Seas. The intended Water 
Junction between the Moskwa and the Volga, which is to 
place the former, and consequently the city of Moscow, in 
direct communication with the Neva and St Petersbui^, 
through the latter river, will extend about 14S English 
miles, and it is calculated will cost 5,840,000 roubles. 
As I am on the subject of inland trade, it may be proper 


to introduce in this place the account cl a curious discovery 
made towards the middle of November, while I was yet at 
St. Petersburg^, by a learned professor, who was one of the 
members of the commission appointed to form a code of laws. 
Looking among a great number of old papers he discovered 
the correspondence of Peter the First with the notorious 
schemer and financier, Law, then in the service of France. 
From the Emperor^s letters it appears, that he had formed a 
plan of a mercantile establishment on the coast of the Cas- 
pian Sea, under the name of the Asiatic Company, to be, in 
every respect, similar to the English East India Company. 
He proposed to Law to come over to arrange the adminis- 
tratum of this Company, which was to have its corresponding 
Board of Directors in St. Petersburgh, to enjoy the privi- 
lege of having troops, with the power of making war and cos^ 
(duding treaties of peace and commerce, to confer rewards 
and extend the territory which the Crown would in the first 
inrtanre grant to it, and which was to be paid by instalments. 
The said Company was to enjoy the complete monopoly of 
Asiatic commerce. The Emperor offered to make Law a 
Prince, to grant him the highest honour, with an ofiice of 
the first order in the capital, and to bestow on him a large 
pension, with SOOO Jires (now known under the name of 
peasants). The crafty financier excused himself in hia 
latter, by saying that he was under engagements to France, 
by which he must abide. The idea therefore, of extending 
the power and influence of Russia towards the East and 
South, which is generally attributed to and said to have 
been a great favourite with the Empress Catherine, seems 
in fact a much older notion of the Russian Sovereigns. 

There are within the short distance of thirty versts of 
St. Petersburgh, not fewer than six or eight large and im«- 
poitaat manufactories (Zavods) situated on the left and 
upper bank of the Neva, one or two of which I took an 
opportimity of examining. The nearest are the china and 


looking-glass manufactories, which deserve notice. In tbe 
latter, at the head of which is a director with the rank of 
general, M. Kamaroff, mirrors are cast of larger dimen- 
sions than any that have issued from the glass manufac- 
tories of Murano, St. Idelfonso, Paris, or London. The 
great mirror which forms one of the most remarkable orna- 
ments of the Taurida Palace, but which is almost lost in 
the midst of so many surrounding objects of attraction, 
was cast in this Imperial establishment, the foundation of 
which is due to Prince Potemkin, for whom that almost 
enchanted palace was erected. That mirror measures 
seven archines by three and a-half, or one hundred and 
ninety-four inches by one hundred. The same proportions 
precisely were given to the splendid mirror cast in this same 
establishment, and intended as a present from his Majesty 
to the Duke of Wellington. It was afterwards committed 
to the care of people, who for a stated sum insured its safe 
delivery in England; but they were unlucky in«their spe- 
culation, for the glass, probably from being improperly 
packed, was found on its arrival reduced almost to imper- 
ceptible atoms. I say, from being improperly packed, and 
not in consequence of its extraordinary dimensions; be- 
cause I have learned that another, exactly similar in every 
respect, has been cast, which has arrived safe at the man- 
sion of the Duke. The value of that of tbe Taurida Palace 
was, at the time, estimated at 17,000 roubles. Considering, 
therefore, the alteration in the rate of money between that 
and the present time, and the increased value of the com- 
modity, the Wellington mirror, the largest certainly in the 
King^s dominions, cannot be worth much less than 3000 
guineas, or 76,000 roubles ; which is, I believe, the estima- 
ted value. Another mirror, of xmusually large dimensions, 
was taken out by Commodore Golovine, intended as a pre- 
sent to the Emperor of China ; but whether it ever reached 
its destination, as the gallant navigator was not suffered to 


proceed to Pekin, I know not. In November 1825, the 
people of St. Petersburgh had an opportunity of viewing, 
at this Imperial manufactory, perhaps the most singular 
piece of workmanship, in crystal, that has ever been ex- 
hibited to public curiosity. This consisted of a large bed- 
stead in cut crystal, wrought at the Imperial manufac- 
tory, made entirely by Russian artists, from a design <^ 
Monsieur Ivanoff, by order of the late Emperor, and in- 
tended as a present to the Shah of Persia. It is reported 
to have been magnificent in the extreme. It has not proved 
a bed of roses to that Sovereign, and the chances of war 
have made him pay pretty dearly for the splendid present. 

The mode of casting and polishing the mirrors employ- 
ed in this manufactory is much the same as that adopted 
in England. Every other kind of glass works is made 
here, as well as large plate-glass for windows, which, by 
the bye, is used in St Petersburgh of larger dimensions 
and mord commonly than I have ever seen elsewhere. In 
the large exposition rooms of the establishment a vari- 
ety of beautiful specimens are always displayed, some of 
which are really chef-^JPceuvres. The ornaments, such as 
tripods, vases, and slabs for tables, noticed in the Imperial 
palaces, already described, and to be found in several of the 
Imperial country residences, have been manufactured here, 
and are some of the finest of the kind I have met with. 
I doubt, however, whether such an establishment can be pro- 
fitable, every thing being on such a magnificent scale, and 
the people employed made so expensively comfortable^ Ht 
the charge of the Crown. In this and the porcelain ma« 
nufactory, not far distant, there are no fewer than a thou- 
sand people constantly occupied, and every thing in both 
establishments is carried on with a regularity and precision, 
which look more like military tactics than a mechanical 

The manufactory just mentioned, (Fatforovoi* Zavod,) 


WAS tranflferred to its present site from Catherinhof, in can* 
sequence of the last inundation which had greatly damif;ed 
the establishment when it was situaied in that Tillage. 
Here, as wdl as in many other of the Imperial &bffie8, 
children, as well as grown up parsons belonging to Ae 
Foundling Hospital, are employed, all of whom have had 
(thanks to their great patroness !) the advantage of a much 
more suitable education in general, than artificers of the 
lower classes usually obtain. The painting on the china is 
principally executed by them, under the inspection of eaii-> 
nent artists. I hare already mentioned the three magnifi- 
cent vases, fifteen feet high, manufactured in this estdliJish- 
ment, and placed as appropriate decorations in the Raphael 
gallery of the Hermitage. For diape, design, paintidg, 
and gilding, they may be considered as very fine spedmeas 
of Russian industry in this branch. The gilding, indeed^ 
is superior to that of S4vre and Dresden ; but the paste« I 
believe, is not considered equally good. Such is the case 
too with the metal of the mirrors at the plate^lass manu- 
factory. Beautiful as they are, there is a blueish cast 
upon the surface when viewed oUiquely, whidi gives it the 
appearance of highly polished steel, rather than of glass. 

As to objects of luxury and ornaments, in whi^ the fint 
talent is concentrated, the Russian artists employed in the 
Imperial china and porcelain manufactory have doubtlessly 
shown that they are capable of ranking with the most 
famed nations ; but it is in the making of the more com^ 
mon and the more useful sort of earthen- ware of all kinds, 
in which England excels every other country, that die 
Russian manufactories which I have seen in St. Peters^ 
burgh seemed to me to stand in need of very considertdile 

On my way to Alexandrowsky, accompanied by Doctor 
Ruhl, I passed before the great iron-foundry, anodier Im- 


pnial manufactory, on the Sdilusselburg road, in which, 
among other objects, some y^ excellent steam-engines 
have been made, under the direction of an Englishman, 
Mr. Clark, the governor of the establishment, one of 
which, of great power, I noticed at work in the Imperial 
Mint ; but I had no leisure to visit it* Our object was to 
devote the whole day to the examination of the first men- 
tioBed establidiment, which, on many accounts^ is deserving 
of the particular notice of strangers. The day could not 
have been more propitious than it proved to be for an ex« 
cunion of ten or twelve versts into the country. My 
excellent friend and conductor, Dr. Ruhl, called at Count 
Wonmsow's, in a large kibitka, on a sledge, drawn by three 
horMS abreast, driven by an Isvostehick, who steod all the 
time, and never attempted t» put any thing round his long 
and ample neck, which he kept exposed to the air, though 
the temperature was at seven degrees below zero of Reau- 
mur, and in a short time each hair of his beard presented 
the sparkling crystallization of moisture upon it. We 
w«re received on out arrival by General Wilson and his 
younger brother, to both of whom I take this opportunity 
of repeating my acknowledgments, for their kind conde* 
aoension in showing and explaining to me every thing con- 
nected with an establishment of such magnitude — one 
which is so admiraUy calculated to show what Russia may 
do in point of manufacture, when, as in the present instance, 
the energy of eminent individuals is combined with exten- 
nve machinery, and the whole is planned and directed by a 
snperior mmd. 
Again, it is to the Empress-mother that I am called 

• The masfaiBery for the Imperial Mint was made at Sobo, nssr 
Bimilaifl^Mun, by Messrs. Boulfeon and Watts, wbo sent out proper 
paopk to set it np by permission of the English Goyemment. 


upon to ascribe the merit, useful application, and admiraUe 
order of the Alexandrowsky Zavod. Combining charity 
with a natural desire to promote one of the most useful as 
well as beautiful branches of human industry, which. was 
before either totally wanting, or carelessly conducted in 
Russia, that Sovereign has extended her immediate patron- 
age to a cotton and linen manufactory, in which she has, 
with great judgment, employed nearly a thousand boys and 
girls, selected from the Foundling Hospital, thereby giving 
to those, I may say, parendess children, a respectable state 
in society. Besides these, eight hundred free labourers, 
who are paid by the piece, are employed in the estaUisb* 
ment, principally for the hemp and flax manufactures, 
which would prove too arduous for such young people as 
the foundlings. Lest I should be suspected of optimism 
in my views of these kind of institutions in St Peters- 
burgh, it gives me particular satisfaction to add to my own 
the testimony of a respectable British nnval officer. Captain 
Jones, of whom I have already made honourable mention, 
and who, upon the subject of the Alexandrowsky establish- 
ment, which he seems to have examined with attention, 
makes the following concluding remarks : — *' We left the 
manufactory highly delighted, and we are bound in justice 
to say, that in no country have we seen any thing to ap- 
proach it in point of comfort and cleanliness which pre- 
vail among the children. The far-famed (famed . no 
longer, by the bye) establishment of Mr. Owen, at New 
Lanark, in these respects ranks much below it/' 

The Alexandrowsky Institution stands on. an area, nie^ 
suring 500 sajenes one way, and SOO the other, and ocwsists 
of, 1st, a Maison de Reposy or Convalescents' house, for the 
children of the Foundling, who require country air; -Sdly^ 
a fabric of every species of machinery, banning from the 
raw material to the most intricate omibination of wheel 


works and springs necessary for the operations of carding, 
qiinning, and weaving cotton or flax ; Sdly, the manufac- 
tory of cotton, sail-cloth, and playing cards ; 4thly, the 
dwelling-house of the 1000 children employed in the fac- 
tory ; Sthly, and lastly, the Lasaret, or MaUtm de Santiy 
for the sick children of the establishment. 

There is nothing particular to notice in regard to the 
Maiton de Repas^ except that I thought it less soigtUe 
than the rest of the institution, although still clean and 
apparently comfortable. The convalescent were chiefly 
those who had been labouring under scrofulous disorders, 
or who being weak from the eJBTects of some other com- 
plaint, were unable to work at the factory. The Lazaret, 
to which Dr. Ruhl next conducted ine, is in reality a very 
handsome hospital, in which I found distributed in several 
large airy, and exceedingly clean rooms, about one hundred 
patients, boys and girls of all ages, from ten years upwards. 
The same order and arrangement prevailed which distin- 
guished the H&pital des Pauvres already described ; and 
the accommodations for the patients seemed excellent. 
Great care is taken of these young sufferers by their nurses, 
and nothing seems wanting but a little more activity, and 
a happier dK>ice of remedies in the treatment of their 
diseases. But this opinion is not intended to reflect in 
the least on the niedical officers attached to that institution, 
sinoe they act, no doubt, according to the established me- 
thod, and under a strong conviction of its being a right one, 
not less powerful than that which I now experience in ex« 
pressing my own opinion on the subject. What I mean to 
say is merely this, that if a young woman, of about seven- 
teen, were brought into the wards of an hospital in this coun- 
try, with hig^ fever, full pulse, flushed £m^, pallid lips, 
a diort interrupted respiration, furred tongue, and a fixed 
acute pain at her chest, greatly augmented by eveiy at^ 

▼OL. II. v 


tempt to take a deep ingpiration, she would not be suffered to 
remain three whok days withoat Ueeding, or any odier mea- 
sure, beyond a mere compoand yegetdUe mixture, scarcely 
endowed with purgative qualities. Or if a case of Gorroding 
ulcer and caries of the metatarsal bones occurred in an 
English hospital, the surgeon would not be satisfied wiA 
simply loading the parts with charpie^ which, by the bye, 
I may say here en passant^ is very indifferent in alt the St. 
Fetersburgh hospitals. As we are on the subject of Unt, 
while walking through a manufactory of cotton, I may 
observe that I felt surprised that the idea of making that 
valuable commodity d VAnglaue had not suggested itself 
in that establishment. Statmg my astonishment to some 
medical officer on another occasion (I believe it was at the 
HApiial des Pauvres), on witnessing the heavy and coarse 
assemblage of threads from unraveUed old linen, which 
were employed even in the most irritable sores, as charpii, 
he assured me that they had a machine for making EngUsk 
lint, but that it had not been found to answer. A 
medical officer of the British Navy, of twenty years stand- 
ing, was not likely to yield credence very readily to this 
assertion, and I requested to see the machine in question; 
when I discovered that it was, in fact, a mere contrivance, 
I know not by whom, for patting down cotton into a soft 
of cloth> without any consistency, or difference ot suifaoes. 
Now on this point, Russian surgery, and that of every other 
Continental nation, except I believe the French of late yean, 
are much on a par, and require iminroveiiient : nor is the 
subject of such trifling importance, as some of my readers 
may be inclined to think, who are by this time getting tired 
of this digression on lint I ascertained, on inquiiyy that 
the diseases which I had found prevailing to a great de- 
gree at Manchester in 1811, while chi a visit to the cotton 
iactaries of that dty, and which were manifestly dependent 


on the laode of life led by the young children at those 
places^ do not exist in the same degree at Alexandroi^sky^ 
with the exception of scrofula; and even this class of 
complaint appeared to be less the e£Pect of confinement 
mad sedentary life, than the produce of lactation by Finnisli 
wet-nurses, some of whom are necessarily employed at the 
Foondfing. The purulent or scrofulous ophthalmia of 
children, is much less prevalent here than in England. My 
experience of several years as senior physician to the Royal 
Metropolitan Infirmary for sick children, where about 
40,000 patients of the poorer classes have been treated, 
enables me to speak in a positive manner on this point. 

On entering the very extensive workshops where the 
machinery is made, accompanied by General Wilson, with 
whom we conversed in English, I could have fancied my* 
wM transported into a Birmingham or Sheffield manufac* 
tory, were it not that now and then I caught the Russian 
aoimds of the workmen^s conversation. The number and 
high polish of the tools, and complicated machinery made 
here, or serving to make others ; their methodical arrange* 
ments ; the hundreds of operations set in motion by one 
m^hty power; the sight of a beautiful steam-engine of 
sixty horse power, by Murray of Leeds, was a spectacle 
wiiidi I thou^t existed only in England, on so large a 
scale^ and in such perfection. Yet all I saw was the work 
cxf Russians : some were free peasants who had been brought 
Mtfaer from the country and perfectly ignorant; others 
were foundlings: — the directing hand alone was from this 
eountry. It ia fortunate for England, that among the 
aatiaos which chiefly strive to rival her in manufactures, 
nqairiiqp midtiplkity of machines, vanity leads them to 
attempt those imitaticms under the direction of their own 
cttixena. Were they to follow the more judicious plan 
adopted by the Russian Sovereign, of placing at the head 

Y 2 


of their establishments a gentleman of such attainmeDts 
as General Wilson, who brings with him from this csouih 
try, which is the mother of almost all the really useful 
and ingenious inventions in mechanics, all the experience 
and science of an Englidi superintendent, the seyerest 
prohibitions on the exportation of English machinery 
would not save this country from successful competitioo. 
The mode of working and carrying on the factory at Alex- 
androwsky, differs not in the slightest degree from that 
employed in the manufactories of this country ; the ma- 
chinery is as good and as perfect; the men as willing 
and as able, instructed as they are ; and lastly, the mate- 
rial is the same, namely, American cotton. Why should 
not the result therefore be similar ? nay better, since die 
wages are lower and provisions cheaper ? And such is in 
reality the case. . In the room for card-making we could not 
help admiring that most beautiful machine, invented by an 
American, and improved by Dyer, for running the sted 
teeth into leather. There are thirty of these machines, lai]ge 
and small. By this wonderful production of human inge- 
nuity, a certain number of slender steel wires, and a long and 
flat slip of leather, are enabled (without the slightest assist- 
ance of man, who need indeed not be present,) to form them- 
selves into several yards of those uniform and regular wiie- 
cards, which are so important in the cotton-wool manu&c- 
tory. These cards are used in a room up-stairs, S50 feet longi 
called the carding-room, in which 80 poods of cotton a day 
(jtSSO lbs.) are carded. In a corresponding apartment k- 
low this, there are 250 spindles conducted both by the mule 
and water processes of Arkwright. The whole of this de- 
partment is worked by female foundlings, from the age of 
twelve to thirty*five, neatly dressed in an uniform costumei 
and all looking healthy. They seem rather stinted in tbeir 
growth; but none of them had a cachectic look, or that of 


ailment. The place was well aired, not too close, 
nor damp, and well lighted. At night, the whole establish* 
ment is lighted with gas. 

The average yearly produce of this manufactory is SO.OQO 
poods of cotton-yam, or 720,000 lbs. English, and 8000 
poods of flax. The quantity of sail-cloth, of very excellent 
quality, manufactured in the TisseroTideriej is also consider- 
able : it is principally for the American market. The 
Alexandrowsky Zavod, as a cotton^factory, has very few 
rival national establishments of the same kind; but is 
fcwoed to regulate its price by that of the import wool 
from England, which country sends thither about ^^t the 
cotton-wool yearly manufactured in the empire, although 
the duties on cotton-yam and cloth amount to thirty per 
cent. At Alexandrowsky no cotton cloth is manufactured. 
I felt a curiosity to ascertain the price of labour paid to the 
free labourers, who work by the piece at the looms for 
making sail-cloth and flemsfor sheeting. I found that they 
earn from forty to fifty roubles a month, if they are very 
assiduous, and consider themselves amply remunerated. 
The highest of these sums is equal only to half-a-guinea 
a week! 

As in so numerous a confraternity of the two sexes, 
marriage is likely to prove as useful as it is desirable, the 
Empress-mother has provided those who enter that holy 
state with a neat log-house in the immediate neighbour- 
IkxkI of the factory, which is built purposely for each 
couple, as soon as a marriage takes place. There are 
at this time about. 100, who are married out of the 1000 
foundlings here employed; and thus a rising colony of 
legitimateg is gradually forming. 

The manufactory of playing-cards, the only one allowed 
in Russia, attached to the Alexandrowsky Zavod, is a source 
of immense profit, which the Empress-mother has by her 


powerful intercession with the Sovereign secured exclu- 
sively in aid of the funds of the ^^ Enfans trouves." That 
profit amounts yearly to ftB^OOOl. sterling. Before this 
arrangement took place, the right of manufacturing and 
selling playing-cards in Busaa was farmed out, and the 
foundlings were supported by a duty paid on than; but 
the institution was not equally benefited. The nude found- 
lings are employed in all the various operations connected 
with this manufactory. 

In the machinery department General Wilson has under- 
taken other important works, besides the mere manufaetme 
of tools for the latter establishment. He was at the time 
engaged in constructing a steam-engine of 100 horse power. 

The question of nourishment and labour in reference to 
children employed in large manufactories, has, at all times, 
engaged the attention of political economists and physi- 
cians, particularly in England. As one of the latter class 
I naturally inquired into the usage which those industrious 
boys and girls experienced ; and on reading the following 
account, one cannot deny that in no part of Europe csa 
they be more judiciously or humanely treated. 

They rise in the first place uniformly at nx o'clock, 
winter and summer; and after prayers begin their daily 
labour. Half a pound of bread is sent round to them at 
eight o'clock, and at twelve they dine. For this meal and 
^recreation an hour and a half in winter, and two hours ia 
summer, are allowed. The dinner consists of plain or 
cabbage soup, (stchy) beef and kascha, and rye bread, five 
days in the week ; and of fish, (sniatky,) in their cabbage 
soup, the other two days in the week. Kvass is their 
beverage ad libitum^ according to the season of the year. 
They again work frcHn half past one or two, till half past 
seven ; and at four o^dock receive a second half-pound of 
rye bread. Supper is prepared at eight, consisting of aoup^ 


and kaaeha of buck*wheftt» kroupa (grits), in winter> or milk 
ki Bommer ; recreatioD till nine. Between the latter hour 
and ten o'clock^ ur between eight and ten during holidays, 
the youngest go to school, where they learn to read and write, 
arithmetic, and to make drawings of machinery. They sleep 
in large, lofty, well-ured, and separate dormitories, and 
iji excellent beds : they dine in the same refectory, where 
the girls are separated from the boys by a screen. All 
general movements of leaving off or going to work ; entering 
or quitting the Church of the Establishment, where the 
two sexes are also separate; walking to and from the 
refectory and dormitories, are performed in ranks and 
columns of fifty, headed by the principal boy and girl, and 
the superintendent master artificers ; no scrambling, noise, 
or confusion being allowed. Previously to ritting down to 
dinner, they una voce dng a hymn, according to the ge- 
neral practice of all the institutions under the protection 
of the Empress Maria Feodorovna. 

In establishing this manufactory, the only public one 
of the kind in Russia, and the largest, compared to the few 
private factories of that description in the country, the 
£mpre8s-mother had a twofold object in view. First, to 
find an additional fidd of industry in which to employ a 
large number ol the foundlings, whom she rears with so 
much maternal care and regard almost from their birth, 
till they become men and women ; and secondly, to obtain 
fresh means of increasing the enormous capital which is 
necessary to defray the annual expenditure of an institu- 
tioa of such magnitude as that of the Foundling. Frodl 
what I have seen, it appeared to me that the two objects 
bad been most completely accomplished. 

I intreat the indulgence of my readers for entering thus 
minutely into the details of this establishment, a superficial 
account of which has been given in othei^ works; but my 


object has been to render the present poblication useful 
without being unentertaining ; and the perusal of the above 
particulars may to some not prove useless. 

Thirty-four versts from St. Petersburgh there is ano- 
ther important manufactory, called from the name of the 
village Kolpinskoi Zavod, which serves to supply every 
kind of store for the fleet, whether in the Baltic, White, 
or Black Seas. I did not visit it, and have great pleasure 
in referring my readers to the account given of it by s 
very competent judge. Captain Jones of the Royal Navy, 
who observes, *' They must watch us indeed closely, and 
have the best intelligence, for almost every nautical instru- 
ment, which is patent, or considered a great improvement 
in our service, is made, and to be seen at Eolpina.'' 

One of the most curious political phenomena in Russia is 
the circulation of coin, and the state of its paper currency. 
There -is but little gold in circulation. The larger sort of 
silver coinage is somewhat general ; the smaller pieces are 
so in a very considerable degree ; but copper money may in 
fact be assumed as the standard currency of the country, and 
is very abundant There is only one spedes of gold coin, 
and one of its aliquot divisions, in circulation, and these are 
the Imperial and half Imperial, which are worth t&k and 
five silver roubles; I never saw but one of the former 
during my stay in St. Petersburgh. The silver rouble, 
which was formerly not only the current, but, we may say, 
the real standard c6in of Russia, is not quite so large as a 
dollar, and is divided into halves, quarters, tenths, and 
twentieths."*^ A few of the entire silver roubles are coined 
from time to time ; but its aliquot parts are those mostin cir- 
culation, and although their relative value has diminished, 
their nominal value has increased* Thus the quarter of a 

* Under different Sovereigns its intrinsic value varied from 58 to 
S6 English pence. * 


silver rouble, which ought to represent twenty»five kopeeks, 
is now considered as a nominal rouble, and will purchase 
100 kopeeks in copper ; or what amounts to the same thing, 
five of them are change for a five rouble note ; and so of 
the rest of the aliquot parts of a silver rouble in propor- 
tion. Hence it appears, that the value of the old silver 
rouble compared with the paper rouble, is as four to one* 
A stranger, therefore, must bear in mind, that when he is 
asked a certain sum in roubles, he is called upon only for 
such roubles as are represented by the small silver coin in- 
scribed with twenty-five upon it ; and that consequently, 
in paying with that or any other of the aliquot parts of a 
silver rouble^ he is to multiply the marked value of those 
parts by four, in making up the sum. In copper, there are 
the piatak of five kopeeks, the groche of two kopeeks, and 
the single kopeek, which latter coin and its two subdivisions, 
however, are seldom met with. The kopeek is equal to 
one-tenth of an English penny ; but its relative vfilue, in re* 
ference to English money, depends on the exchange, which 
determines the value of the paper rouble from ninepence, 
upwards. It is now 10^. One hundred kopeeks of 
the present copper coinage form one paper rouble, and 
weigh 10,150 grains of metal ; whereas tenpence ^, the 
average corresponding quantity of English copper coin- 
age, weigh but 4,784 grains ; consequently, copper is worth 
in England considerably more than double its value in 
Russia. In this consists part of the phenomenon; the 
rest of which is exhibited in the paper currency. When 
the paper rouble was first issued, it was meant to represent 
the value of the silver rouble ; at present, it requires four 
ct the former to equal one of the latter. It fell to that 
df^ree of depreciation in the most rapid manner, and there 
it has remained ever since, without the least attempt or 
likelihood to rise again. There have been advantages and 


disadvantages coDneded with . this depredalioii ; but upon 
these it is not my province to dwell. 

There are bank roubles or notes of every amount, from 
five to a thousand roubles, most of which are readily dis- 
tinguished by their colour and shape, besides their inscrip- 
tion. Thus : 

The five rouble note is blue ; that of ten is pink, and 
the rest are white ; but the sliape of each of the lattor is 
difierenty as well as the manner of printing them. 

The note of £00 is white in front and dark at the back, 
without any printed border. The No. 900 is repeated in 
white df^ers on the back. 

The note of 100 is much larger in size, and white also ; 
but it has an oval border, and a spread eagle at each angle. 
The whole inscription is in the centre ; the No. 100 is re- 
peated in white ciphers at the back, on a dark oval. These 
notes are commonly called stos. meaning hundreds, for the 
sake of brevity. 

That of fifty has an ornamented square border on a 
dark ground ; and at the back, the year in large white 
letters on a dark slip. It is likewise white. 

The twenty-five rouble, or guinea note, is also white, and 
printed, in its vertical direction, in black letters, on a darkidi 
^uare ground, having an ornamented border, and the Na 
S5 repeated in large ciphers on the back, on a black sUp. 

The ten rouble has the number printed in front, at the 
top, under the Imperial Eagle, as in all the notes, and has 
a black square border, ornamented at each comer, and the 
word Desiat (ten), in white letters, on a black slip. 

The five rouble note, in regard to printing, resembles the 
preceding, and the word Fiat (five), in white letters, at the 

Every note has a legend all round, worked in th^ 
substance of the paper, the year, and the value, being 


marked in dark letters. The paper oS- which they are 
made is very coarse, easily tora^ and wears indifferently. 

The issue of paper has, by the recent regulatioiis of Mons. 
Cancrine, the Minister of Finance, been limited to the 
amount already in circulation, without augmentation or 
dkninution, by which its credit is said to have been placed 
on a more solid foundation. The idea of considering the 
circulating bank notes as part of the pubUc debt, to be re- 
deemed by the sinking fund {caitse d'amortissement)^ and 
to bear interest, has been abandoned as injurious ; and yet 
such a determination has not in the least affected the stable 
rate of value of the notes. The sentiments expressed by 
the Finance Minister on this subject are worthy of the 
consideration of our political economists. ^^ Le vrai 
credit," observes that Minister, ^^ repose sur un syst^me 
pars6v6rant d'*^onomie financi^re ; sur lemaintien de T^qui- 
libre entre le revenu et la d^pense ; sur le soin d'eviter les 
emprunts en temps de paix; enfin, sur I'exactitude scru- 
puleuse du Gouvernement k remplir ses obligations envers 
les cr^anciers de T^tat.'*^ The oscillations which these notes 
are known to experience in their value relative to that of 
specie, are so slight that they have never affected either 
the domestic well-being of the subject, the national indus- 
try, commercial speculation, or the rate of exchange ; at 
the same time, that the existing capitals and property of 
every description have always represented the same value. 
This undoubtedly could not have been the case, had the 
notes in circulation been subjected to the inevitable varia- 
tion which their value must undergo, where the system is 
adopted of increasing or diminishing their number, by 
which their intrinsic value is either diminished, or unna- 
turally increased. 

The whole capital in circulation in bank notes in the 
Empire, up to January, 18S7, amounted, as in the pre- 


ceding years (no ehange whateyer haying taken place since), 
to 595,7769810 roubles. Ten millions of notes, of five and 
ten roubles each, were printed, which form a fund, simply, 
as a means of exchanging them for notes of a higher yalue, 
or for those that are worn out. 

The transactions of the paper currency of the country 
are carried on at St. Petersburgh by a bank, called the 
^^ Aasignatsionnoi' Bank,** one of the numerous fine buikU 
ings of that capital, and really remarkable for the grandeur 
and severity of its architecture, situated in a street called 
the Bolchaya Sadovaya, not far from the Russian shops, 
hereafter to be described. 

According to the tables published by Weydemeyer, the 
total revenue of Russia amounts to 450,000,000 rouUes 
paper money value. From documents, still more authen- 
tic, the pubUc debt in January 1827, the year in which I 
visited St. Petersburgh, including the sum remaining due to 
Holland, the ** dettes inf6rieures k terme,*^ and the ^' dettes 
& rentes jperpetuelles,'^ in gold, silver, and paper cur> 
rency, at six and five per cents, appears to have been, as 

follows :— 

Debt to Holland, 46,100.000 florins. 

National Debt. 

In Gold, 1 4,820 roubles. 

In Silver, 88,143,781 

In Bank Notes, 264,496,804 
The management of the public debt is confided to a 
commission d^amortissementy who, every year, by their pur- 
chases redeem a certain quantity of the public debt. The 
amount of that redemption in the course of 1826 in the 
five and six per cents, was as follows : — . 

In Gold, 8,700 roubles. 

In SUver, 12,218,4^0 

In Bank Notes, 54,980,240 



By thefe ieveral payments the public debt was reduced 
to the amount before quoted. The punctuality of the 
Russian Government toward its public creditors is uni- 
Tersally acknowledged ; and its conduct in regard to the an« 
dent debt contracted with Holland, to which all arrears of 
interest that accrued during the occupation of that country 
by the enemy of Russia were liquidated, has materially 
tended to strengthen that confidence in its funds which keepB 
their value at their present steady rate. I have heard in 
the course of the last winter, a diplomatic character of 
the first respectability, unconnected with Russia, say that 
he considered the Russian funds equal in security to those 
of England, and superior to them in the advantage of 
a larger interest. 

There are in St. Petersburgh other public banks con- 
nected with the Department of Finance, the operations of 
which necessarily and materially influence the state of the 
currency and the public revenue of the country. Intrin« 
sically, however, those institutions are intended more for 
the advantage and convenience of private individuals than 
for any direct public purpose. These are the Loan Bank 
and the Commercial Bank. Their purport is sufficiently 
indicated by their titles. Their operations are extensive. 
The cafntal of the Commercial Bank is 80,000,000 roubles, 
but as it receives deposits, bearing interest, in aid of 
its funds, with which it carries on the several commercial 
operations of lending money, discounting bills, and mort- 
gaging or anticipating payments on goods, be, the dis- 
posable capital is always much more considerable : up to 
January 1887, that capital amounted to S66,498,865 
roubles, or about 11,000,000 sterling. The net profit of 
this bank in 1826 amounted to S,S16,588 roubles, 61 
kopeeks. That of the Loan Bank for the same year was 
2,060,728 roubles, 29 kopeeks. 

There is only another banking establishment which I 


noticed in St. PeterBbnrgb, that requires to he HOitioiied 
before I conclude my observations on the oommercial insli- 
tutions of that capital. This is the Lombard) or Mont it 
Pieti, an establishment similar to that which was attempted 
to be formed in London a few years ago, and in which 
valuable goods^ merchandise, trinkets, jewels, Stc, may be 
deposited by all classes of persons for corresponding loans of 
money, to any amount above ten roubles, bearing an interest 
of six per cent. The resources of this powerfol engine 
have been placed in the hands of the Empress-mother ; and 
it is with ihem that she is enabled to support the Greit 
Foundling Hospitals of St. Petersburgh and Moscow, as 
well as the numerous useful institutions connected with those 
hospitals. The Lombard also receives deposits of money 
for an indefinite time, for which it pays a yearly interest of 
five per cent. The floating or disposable capital of tfiit 
branch is about 50,000,000 roubles. The building is per- 
haps one of the least showy in St. Petersburgh, and the 
access, and entrance to it, are by no means in accordance 
with the more prevalent practice of that capital, of plaoing 
all public institutions in large edifices having a strikii^ 




Intkoduction to Coukt. — Ceremonial attending it. —^ Interview 
with His present Majesty and with the Empress-mother. — Ton of 
Society. — The fair Sex. — Opinion of a modem French traveller. 
— Soir^. — Balls. — Internal arrangement of the Palaces and 
other Houses of the Nobility. — Extravagant number of Servants 
and attendants. — Principal Palaces of Noblemen at St. Peters- 
bmgh. — > F^tes pri^ and *' at homes." — Visiting. — Birth-days. 
— Onomastic days. — Court F^tes. — Bal Maaqah at the Taurida 
Palace. — Imperial Christenings. — Dinners. — Form and style of 
a Russian Dinner in the houses of the great. — English Sauce and 
Russian Cookery. — Delicious Fish. — Introduction of the English 
tehion of Dining. — Mansion of Count Stanislaus Potocki. -^ 
IMning among the English at St. Petersburgh. — '' Conversazioni.** 
— Cards. — La Monche. *— Splendour and pomp of the Rosauur No> 
biHty in former times. — Grande Society at the Palace of the late 
Great Chamberlain, Naryschkine;. — His fortune, death, embalm- 
ing, and burial. — Lion Narjrschkine. — Midnight Suppers.— State 
of Society among the Russian Merchants. — Magnificent Houses 
and F^tes of some of them. — The Clubs. — The English Club. — 
The Commercial Club. — The English Library. — The Tien 
EM f — Public Walks. -^ The Lounge in the Nevskoi Prospekt, 
tlie Regent-Street of St. Petersburgh. — Equipages and Pedes- 
trians. — The English and the Russian Quays. — The Summer 
Gardens, and its magnificent railing. 

** But trive to aU this learning," said a lively young 
Russian Officer to me one day, whom I had been en- 


tertaining with a long and prosing account (as I fear my 
readers, too, will find it) of what I had seen in his favourite 
city. " Trive to all this learning, et allons voir ks lionsy 
as one of your adopted countrymen, who came over to see 
the coronation, said to a lady in his best French i PAn- 
glaise" : and so say I too ; for I fear I am tiring out even 
the most patient and the gravest of my readers, with my 
endless list^'of buildings and institutions. 

It is not one of the least advantages of an introductum 
to Court at home, that it facilitates a similar ceremony 
abroad. Some imagine that it is ostentation alone vhich 
leads a traveller entitled either by his rank, his station, 
his character in society, or by courtesy, to such a distinc- 
tioUf to wish for a presentation at Court. This may be 
true in some respects in this country, where, with the ex- 
ception of exalted persons, the majority of foreigners who 
have the honour of paying their homage to the Sovereign, 
in common with his Majesty's subjects, go through the 
ceremony of appearing in the Royal presence in less than 
the quarter of a minute, and have no opportunity of ex- 
pressing more than a mute acknowledgment of their re- 
spect But it is a very different thing abroad. The 
Sovereign condescends to address every stranger who is 
presented, frequently discourses with him on interesting 
topics, — a circumstance the more flattering to the indivi- 
dual thus honoured, as the conversation is generally di- 
rected to subjects with which he is most familiar. Such is 
the practice followed by the Emperor and the two Em- 
presses at the Court of St. Petersburgh ; and the well-known 
affability and gracious courtesy with which they receive 
strangers, render it natural for a traveller to wish for the 
enjoyment of that distinction. The ceremonials of an in- 
troduction at Court in St. Petersburgh are very diflerent 


from those which are observed on a first presentation at 
the King^s levee in England. 

The first necessary step on such an occasion is an 
application to the Ambassador, or Minister^ of the coun- 
try to which the stranger belongs, who requests the 
Minister for Foreign Affairs to inform him of the day 
and hour when the Emperor will receive th^ stranger. 
Ambassadors, particularly the English, have instructions 
not to present, or cause to be presented, any other p^sons 
than such as have already had that honour conferred on 
them at home. Occasionally it happens that the answer of 
the Minister for Foreign Affairs is not forwarded until a 
long time after the application, and then the notice is pro- 
bably very short, which notice is communicated by the 
A^mbassador to the applicant in an official form. The 
hour appointed is generally two o'clock, after the pa- 
rade, at which time, the person to be presented, dressed . 
either in a military or naval uniform, or in the court-dress 
of bis own country, repairs to the Winter Palace, where 
he is received by an officer belonging to the Grand Master 
of the Ceremonies, who conducts him into a waiting-room, 
in the Emperor's private suite of apartments. The last- 
mentioned Grand Officer himself next makes his appear- 
ance, and conducts the stranger into the apartment ad- 
joining the sitting-room of his Majesty, opposite the doors 
of which he is desired to place himself. Some of the 
officers of the household, and one or two more Masters of 
the Ceremonies, are present in this room ; and when more 
than one stranger is to be presented, they are placed in an 
oblique line, at a short distance from each other, and 
fadng the entrance into the Emperor's room. In a few mi- 
nutes, two pages throw open the folding doors of the apart- 
ment ; and his Majesty, dressed in his simple uniform, 

VOL. II. z 


booted and spurred, with a single star on his breast, ad- 
vances, smiling and bowing most courteously, in the same 
manner that a highly bred gentleman receives his guests; 
and having heard the name of the individual first to be 
presented, pronounced aloud by the Grand Master of the 
Ceremonies, proceeds to address him, and to ask questions, 
concluding generally with some well-turned and flattering 
compliment When his Majesty has thus addressed all 
those who have been presented, he retires in the same man- 
ner, bidding them conjointly farewell, while they temain 
still in their places until the folding doors are once more 
closed, when they are conducted to the apartments of the 
reigning Empress, and afterwards to those of the Empreo- 
mother, both which Princesses are accompanied, on sueh 
occasions, by one or two ladies of honour, and as numy 
Grand Officers of the Court, without any Qther pomp, and 
with both of whom precisely the same ceremony, in every 
respect, takes place. There is no kneeling to either the 
Emperor or the Empresses, and the kissing of hands takes 
place only with the two Empresses. The only manifest- 
ation of respect required on the appearance of the Sove- 
reign, as well as at his departure, is a profound inclination 
of the head* It is curious that a more humble obeisance 
should be practised in the presence of a constitutional King) 
than before an absolute Monarch. On all these occasions, 
it is not the etiquette for the Ambassador or Minister to 
be present, unless required by his Majesty, or except when 
the Ambassador himself has requested a personal audience 
at the same time. When, however, the Emperor signifies 
his pleasure to receive the first presentation of a stranger 
at the Circle du Corps Diplomatiqtie^ the individual is 
presented by the Ambassador in person, and the ceremony 
takes place in the state apartments, with more pomp than 
I have described, but with much less of that gratification 


which cannot but be felt by all who have had the honour 
of a private introduction t6 the present leading members of 
the Imperial family of Russia. The names of those who 
have enjoyed that honour are inserted on the following day 
in the Court Gazette and the Journal de St Petersburgh^ 
Iran authority. 

When his Majesty admitted me to the honour of being 
presented to him, I had an opportunity of witnessing the 
happy manner in which he studied to put those who were 
introduced to him at their ease, by entering at once, and 
with great fluency, upon the subject most likely to be in- 
teresting to them. To an English gentleman, who had 
been presented at the same time, and who was known to 
have recently travelled a great deal in Denmark, Swe- 
den, and Norway, his Majesty put such questions respect* 
iDg that journey, and the many natural beauties which it 
must have offered to his attention, as were likely to give 
him an opportunity of entering freely upon the subject. 
The apt remarks made by the Emperor upon several parts 
of the traveller'^s rapid narrative of his journey, evinced a 
facility of discoursing on the various topics connected with 
that narrative, and a degree of condescension, which could 
not fiiil to make a striking impression on our minds. In 
addressing me next, his Majesty with equal ease changed 
the tojMc of conversation, made inquiries respecting the 
state of science, and the progress c€ modem discoveries 
in England ; was pleased to allude to the investigation on 
the art of embalming among the Eg3rptians, in terms which 
showed that he was acquainted with my experiments on 
that subject ; asked my opinion of the civil, naval, and mi- 
litary hospitals in St. Petersburgh ; apd spoke very highly 
ci the Naval Hospital at Plymouth, which he had exa^ 
rained minutely, and to which he hoped I should find 
thoae in his capital not very dissimilar. He expressed hi« 

z S 


great satisfaction at the services rendered to Busaa hj 
several English physicians, among whom his Majesty par- 
ticularly mentioned Sir James Wylie, Dr. LeightoD, and 
Sir Alexander Crichton ; inquiring at the same time, in a 
very particular and aflTectionate manner, about the latter, 
as to whether he was settled in London, and in practice, 
or living in the country. He said that nothing was more 
pleasing to him than to see foreign physicians visiting the 
public establishments of St. Petersburgh, as he hoped that 
the country might derive benefit from their observations, 
and that he himself recollected visiting St. Bartholomew's 
Hospital, with the nature of which institution he had been 
much pleased, but that there were improvements which at 
that time struck him as being called for in some of the 
wards.* Having permitted me to make a reply to this as 
well as to several other observations which fell from him 
in the coursQ of the interview, his Majesty withdrew with 
" J'esp^re que nous aurons le plaisir de vous voir souvent 
pendant votre sejour h St. Petersbourg," addressed to Mr. 
M. T — , the other gentleman presented; and "Jevous 
souhaite un bon voyage,^^ to myself, whom he knew to be 
about to leave the capital. Having answered in the affir- 
mative to a question of his Majesty, whether I intended 
going to Moscow ; the Emperor observed, ** Vous verrez 
une ville qui merite a tout ^gard Tattention d^un voya- 
geur. Vous nous voyez ici dans des habits tout neufsy 
que nous tachons de porter le mieux possible ; mais k 
Moscow on voit le Russe tel qu'il est ; on decouvie ce 

* His Majesty's observation was perfectly just, I am aorty to sifi 
as 1 have been informed on inquiry since my return. The system wM 
a bad one then ; and a well-known surgeon^ now retired^ was too much 
engaged in private practice, to pay more than an hour's attention 
each week to the condition of his wards. But new men and new mea- 
sures have redeemed the well-merited reputation of that exoeUent 


qu^il a ete ; et on peut juger par 1^ ce qu^il pourra de^ 
venir ud jour. Certes, Tancienne capitate de la Russie doit 
offrir des reflections int^ressantes k une personne instruite 
et sans pr^juges/' 

On quitting the presence-chamber. Count Stanislaus 
Potocki, the Grand Master of the Ceremonies, preceded by 
the Fourriers de la Cour, accompanied us to the apart- 
ments of her Majesty, the Empress-mother. It had been 
announced to us by Mr. Disbrowe, that we should be pre- 
sented to both the Empresses but, on leaving the Em- 
peror's apartments, we learned with regret that the reign- 
ing Empress had that morning become indisposed. The 
Empress Maria Feodorovna entered her audience-cham- 
ber, accompanied by Prince Dolgorouky, and one or two 
^* Dames d'^honneur k Portrait," and, in . the most affable 
manner imaginable, addressed first Mr. T — ^ and then my- 
self, each upon our favourite topics of personal information. 
In her observations, acuteness of remark, and that concise 
and aphoristical style of speaking which is so striking in 
persons who are masters of the French language, her. Ma^ 
jesty reminded me of^ Madame de Stael, with whom I had 
been well acquainted during her lifetime, and frequently 
visited at Paris. She seemed, indeed, to possess all the 
erudition of that celebrated lady, with directing principles 
far different from hers, and a knowledge fully as extensive 
as had been noticed by Madame de Campan in the ^^Com- 
tesse du Nord,^ thirty-five years before. Her Majesty had 
been informed, that I had visited with great assiduity all 
the public establishments in St. Petersburgh, and particu- 
larly her own, and said she trusted that I saw reason to be 
satisfied with them. She had been made acquainted with the 
several remarks I had made ; and, with a smile, alluded to> 
the curiosity which, in my character of physician, I had 
evinced at the College of the ^^ Demoiselles Nobles," to see 


one of their dresses, in consequence of having been stfuck 
with what I certainly considered, at the time, to be the eflect 
of excessive lacing, a uniformly very small waist in all the 
pupils, which contrasted in a striking manner with the exi 
pansion of their bust; and which, had it been produced by 
busks and laces, I should certainly have taken the liberty 
of condemning, as highly injurious to the present and fo^ 
ture health of the young ladies. ** Je suis bien aise qu^OD 
vous ait montr6 une des leur robes, oil vous devez avoir 
remarqu^ qu^l n'y avait que des trfes petites baleines— et 
on ne permet aucun corset dessous/' It was thus, indeed, 
that I found matters on inquiry, and I could not help 
on that occasion, feeling some d^ee of surprise at the 
general appearance and figure of the pupils, which was 
what the French call svelte et bien cambrie. But I had 
afterwards sufficient opportunities of observing that such is 
the almost natural conformation of all the fair sex among 
the upper classes of society. Her Majesty, like the Emperor, 
alluded, but in a more particular manner, to my ^ trayail 
sur les Momies d'Egypte,^' and even on this abstruse sob* 
ject she evinced great information by her remarks on what 
I had publicly advanced respecting the conformation, age, 
disease, an^ mode of preparing the mummy I had ex* 
amined, as well as on the inferences to be derived frcwi 
those facts. " Pour moi," said her Majesty, *' je trouve 
dans ce sujet quelque chose de touchant^ par la oonsideia- 
tion du quel on se croit, pour ainsi dire, transporte i F^po- 
que de ce peuple singulier et c616bre, de mani^re, non settle- 
ment it pouvoir consulter les grands monumens qui ont 
transmis jusqu^i nous leur gloire et leur connoissanoes; 
mais i, 6tudier et toucher avec r6v6rence les mains m£mes 
qui les ont 6rig6s." She then withdrew with the usual 
marks of courtesy, which were acknowledged on our part 
by a profound bow when we quitted the room. In a few 


minutes after, however, the Prince Dolgorouky having 
fiignified to the Grand Master of the Ceremonies that it was 
her Majesty's pleasure to confer with me in private, I fol- 
lowed her physician. Dr. Ruhl, into her boudoiry where 
she was standing by a table, on which lay a book and the 
implements for embroidery. Her Majesty having apolo- 
gized for detaining me, as she was pleased to observe, and 
for requesting to see me in her own apartments, proceeded 
to ask more particularly what impression I had received on 
visiting her establishments — what was my opinion of their 
respective utility-— and if I thought that any thing more 
could be devised for the relief of suffering humanity. 
This address was delivered in that tone of kindness and 
affability which, while it gives encouragement, tends also 
to excite increased respect for the exalted personage who 
can use such condescending language. I need not repeat 
to my readers what I stated on the subject of her Ma* 
jesty's numerous charitable and other institutions. My 
sentiments on that point have been sufficiently expressed in 
many of the preceding chapters. I observed to her Ma- 
jesty, among other things, that I thought an hospital for 
the specific treatment and alleviation of the diseases of 
children, was a montunent well worthy of the consideration 
of a Princess, who had almost exhausted every other chan* 
nel of philanthropy in favour of the capital and the na« 
tion. Such an establishment appeared as necessary in St 
Petersburgh as it was found to be in Paris, Vienna, and 
London ; since there existed no provision, or very scanty if 
any, for that important object in St. Petersburgh, except 
in behalf of the foundlings. Her Majesty seemed struck 
with the truth of the observation, and immediately adopt- 
ing the idea, turned to her physician, and said, *^ II faut 
faire cela,^ and begged me to develope a little farther the 
idea, with the details and prospective benefit of which, her 


Majesty appeared highly delighted. She requested that, on 
my return to London, I would send her a plan for such an 
institution ; and that whenever any new discovery in fa- 
vour of humanity, or important fact bearing on the several 
objects of her attention, came to light in England, I would 
not fail to acquaint her with it. ^* Car,** added she, 
^^ notre sejour sur le terre est si court qu'on doit regretter 
le tems perdu sans faire du bien/' Her Majesty next dis- 
coursed on the system of female education pursued at the 
two colleges of St. Catherine and the Demoiselles Nobles. 
It was inipossible, without being guilty of injustice, not to 
admit that the system, as one of public education, was one 
of which the most polished nation might well be proud; 
but having, throughout my professional career, had in view 
the importance of physical as well as moral education, I ven- 
tured to remark, that a constant residence of nine years, with- 
out a total change of air and scene, or in the relations of life 
and mode of living, were it only for once during that period ; 
or without passing a certain time at home in the bosom of 
their families, was calculated to weaken the constitution of 
the pupils, impede the full development of their persons, 
and not improve their general appearance. Her Majesty 
was pleased to admit, in answer, that the observation was 
both plausible and natural ; but that experience had taught 
them differently, since it was but seldom that any of the 
inconveniences I had enumerated, had been observed in 
either of those institutions. The pupils were allowed 
a great deal of exercise in the large gardens of the esta- 
blishment, as well as within doors, and were sent out to 
the country in carriages, once or twice during the summer 
months. On the other hand, it would be next to impossible 
in Russia to follow the plan of sending the young ladies 
to their homes at stated periods of the year, considering 
the immente distances which many of them would have 


to travel in so vast an Empire, and the means of convey- 
ance in the most distant Governments as yet so imperfect. 
Besides, the very limited education of some of the parents, 
and the difficulty of keeping an eye Qver the moral con- 
duct of many of the pupils, while spending their holidays 
at the distance of two and three thousand versts, presented 
insurmountable obstacles to the plan of vacations followed 
in great seminaries. How could we answer for the cha- 
racter of a young lady, observed the Empress, placed be- 
yond our notice for a month or six weeks in every year, 
even though she were living with relations during that 
time ? — ^relations probably either too indulgent or indif- 
ferent, and among whom our pupil might come in contact 
with strangers, boorish servants, or inconsiderate fe- 
male acquaintance, and bring back notions which might 
contaminate the whole flock, or which might give rise to 
unpleasant observations. *^ Non, Monsieur le Docteur, 
BOS jeunes demoiselles doivent 6tre comme le femme de 
Cesar. On ne doit ni les soup9onner — ni parler d^elles.^^ 
This apt classical allusion showed the sources of read- 
ing of her Majesty. The next topic was the Enfans 
Trouv^s, and the merit of that system. Her Majesty 
agreed that it was, at most, a system of questionable utility, 
that it failed to produce many of the moral results ex- 
pected from it, and that it was probably an encourage* 
ment to vice. ^* Mais,^ added she, *' c'est un 6tablisse- 
ment que m^a legue feu mon mari, (visibly affected) ; il Fa 
commis k mes soins, et je me charge de faire scnipuleuse- 
ment le plus de bien possible pour ces roalheureux qui 
sont dejk assez mis^rables de n'appartenir a aucune caste 
dans la soci^t^." She hoped, however, that whatever de- 
grees of vice it might have encouraged, it would be found 
fully compensated by the number of lives which the system 
was calculated to save and protect. In reply I admitted 


that if any consideration was calculated to serve as a de- 
fence to a system which moral writers concurred in regard- 
ing as pernicious, it was doubtless the manner in which 
that system was made to work under her Majesty's direc- 
tions ; and in making this reply, I spoke the genuine sen- 
timents of my conviction on that subject. The Empress 
asked whether the *^ Foundling" in London was like the 
'^Enfans Trouv^s"" at St. Petersburgh; and upon my 
replying in the negative, she expressed a wish to know if 
no endeavours had ever been made to introduce the Con- 
tinental system of foundling hospitals into England. /'An 
attempt/' I answered, ** was indeed made in the year 1757, 
to obtain a grant of 40,000/. towards establishing and sup- 
porting a foundling hospital, on the plan of that adopted in 
several parts of the Continent, and also in the capital of 
Ireland, by introducing a bill to that effect into Parliap 
ment, of which bill the celebrated Mr. Wilkes was the 
reporter. But, independently of the glaring deformity of 
a system which professed to take care of the fruits of illicit 
passion, no matter how numerous ; the mode in which the 
framers of that liill proposed to support such an establish- 
ment was too unjust, and appeared too much* in the shape 
of an encouragement to vice, not to be instantly rejected. 
The provisions of the bill were such, that not only the 
whole nation was to have been taxed for the support of | 
one particular foundling hospital in London, but also 
every married man was to contribute towards defraying the 
expenses of maintaining illegitimate and deserted children, 
by a tax to be paid first on his marriage, next on the 
birth of every child, and lastly at the death of each of his 
children ; thus affording a double excuse for vice, namely 
the conviction that its illicit fruits would be taken care of 
by the nation, and the equal certainty that in following | 

the legitimate career of matrimony they would have to 
pay to the state onerous taxes. By the establishment, and, 


I understand, most admirable management of a separate 
capital, now amounting to several millions of roubles, your 
Majesty has obviated many of the fatal objections to such 
a system.^ ^*Et que pensez-vous,'^ next inquired the 
Empress, ^* de notre systeme d'6ducation aux deux maisons 
d'accouchement pour former des sages femmes qui sout 
tir^s elles-mdmes de rEtablissement des Enfans Trouv6s?** 
*' I am aware,'' she added, ^^ that some persons have objected 
that the early initiation of those young females into matters 
of this kind, tends much to deprave their minds ; but this 
objection I have endeavoured to obviate, by taking care 
that they shall not leave the house, until by a religious 
and moral instruction, as well as an appropriate mental 
education and strict examinations, they are supposed to be 
fortified against temptation/' On this subject I begged 
to assure her Majesty, that my experience of many years 
spent at the head of two lying-in institutions, where from 
thirty to forty sagefemmes attended, led me to believe 
that the constant witnessing of the sufferings attendant on 
childbed, was sufficient to prevent any ill effects that 
might be apprehended from familiarizing their minds with 
the contemplation of such scenes. 

Her Majesty, having learned that I proposed to visit 
Moscow, was so condescending as to say that she would 
give orders to have letters written in my behalf to Prince 
Gallitzine, the Governor-general, and other high characters, 
resident in that city, in order that I might enjoy every pos- 
facility* ; and, ** en attendant je vous conseille, Mon« 

* Eventually I was compelled to relinquish my intention^ and to 
return, with great regret, the four letters of recommendation with 
which her Majesty honoured me^ in consequence of having received 
intelligence from England that the Lord High Admiral had declined 
to grant me an extension of my leave of ahsence, which was about to 
expire. I saw myself, therefore, under the necessity of tracing my 
steps homeward, without any farther digression. 



ftieur le Docteur, d^achever les visites que vous avez faites a 
nos etablissemens par une course a Gatchina, oil se donne 
la premiere Education aux enfans trouves." To which I 
assented. ^' Notre bon Ruhl viendra vous chercher dans un 
equipage de la cour, and comme la distance est trop grande 
pour retourner en ville le m^e jour a Theure du diner, je 
donnerais les ordres necessaires pour qu'on ait soin de vous.'" 
Her Majesty then accepted the copy of my memoirs on 
the Art of Embalming, which I had previously obtained 
permission to present to her, and allowed me to take my 
respectful leave, saying that she herself must proceed to 
her dinner, which she had delayed an hour and a half be- 
yond her usual time, that having been the length of our 

The Empress-mother is not only a most extraordinary 
princess for the qualities of her heart and mind, but in 
person also. Her figure, as Madame de Campan has ob- 
served, is graceful and majestic, without affectation. Her 
maniirey gait, and deportment, are of the most refined de- 
scription. There is so much suavity of expression in her 
countenance, that no one need feel embarrassed in her pre- 
sence. Her taille is precisely what Madame de Campan 
described it to have been forty-five years ago, stately and 
elancee. Her form and complexion are those of a person 
several years younger, and she seems to enjoy the most 
perfect state of health. She was attired in a lilac satin 
robe, arranged in the most modest style, with a head-dress 
ornamented with Marabou feathers, disposed with the great* 
est simplicity. 

Although neither my occupations nor my inclinations 
were likely to permit me to enter much into mixed society 
in St. Petersburgh ; yet the circumstances under which I 
was placed, and the desire to know what was the ton of 
good society in St. Petersburgh, led me to accept a few 


invitatioDS to dinners and evening-parties ; and to conform 
myself to the ceremonious usages of the country, so as to 
acquire some smattering of knowledge on such weighty 
matters. Indeed I had no occasion to go from home in 
search of what is considered high life ; for, from the well- 
known popularity and affable manners of our noble host 
and hostess, their house, both by day and by night, until the 
hour of ten or eleven, but not later, was the rendezvous of 
most of the leading characters of the haut-ton, distinguish- 
ed either for birth, talents, pleasing conversation, or high 
reputation. With the exception of a few times, when the 
Count and Countess were from home, their hospitable and 
splendid board was on every other occasion frequented by 
nxteeu or twenty persons of that class ; besides some who 
were either remarkable for science, or by individuals of great 
literary reputation. It was here that I saw Count Nessel- 
rode, the Minister for Foreign Affairs ; Count Kotchoubey, 
the President of the Imperial Council ; Aid-de-camp, Ge- 
neral Benckendorff, commanding the Gendarmerie ; Prince 
Volkonsky, Comptroller-General of the Imperial Household ; 
Generals BaUbin and Prince Menstchicoff, who signalized 
themselves in the late war ; Count Pouschkine, cup-bearer 
to the Emperor, and several other distinguished persons. 
Count Woronzow, however, is one of those noblemen, who, 
knowing how to appreciate real merit, whether accompanied 
by titular distinction or not, is glad of every opportunity of 
evincing his regard for it. He therefore frequently invited 
to his table members of other ranks of society, for whom 
he entertained esteem, particularly many individuals among 
the English merchants and manufacturers. This convivial 
and pleasing intercourse — these fetes of the mind as well 
as of the body, were, however, damped by the sad intelli- 
gence of the demise of the Earl of Pembroke, a brother-in- 
law of the Count, and to whom he and the Countess were 


affectionately attached. That incomparably moral bxA 
excellent-hearted nobleman bad sunk under a lingering 
disorder, when hop^s were dawning of his recovery ; and 
although, at the time of our leaving England, his foreign 
relatives entertained very little expectation of again seeing 
him on their return, the shock caused by the announce* 
ment of his death threw our whole family into a state of 

I would appeal to the young noblemen and others who 
accompanied the two or three last Embassies-extraordinary 
to St Petersburghy whether they were not highly pleased 
as well as surprised, at the state of society they found in 
that city ; whether they did not, in fact, think that in 
many respects, the intercourse of the noble, the gay, and 
the rich in St. Petersburgh, is distinguished by B.Je ne sfoit 
quoif which is, perhaps, wanting in capitals that boast of a 
higher degree of civilization. With respect to the fair 
sex, I would rather quote the opinion of a French 
writer, to whose work I have already alluded, and who, 
although very far from being always correct or just in 
his remarks and descriptions, must, in his character of 
Frenchmen, be a better authority on the subject than my- 
self, and certainly one less liable to be partial. I can only 
preface his account of the Russian ladies of fashionable 
society, by the tender of my own testimony in confirmatxoD 
of its truth. 

^ Certains voyageurs,^ says Monsieur Ancelot, ^* et no- 
tamment Tauteur des Memoires SecretttSj ont denonc^ i 
FEurope Tignoranoe des femmes Russes ; je ne sais s'ils 
^taient ^quitables k IVpoque o^ ils portaient ce jugement, 
mais je ne puis le ratifier. Profitant des privileges at- 
taches k ma quality d^^tranger, j'ai plus d^une fois franchie 
la ligne de demarcation ^tablie entre les deux sexes; j^ai 


CAUsi avec ses femmes qu'on accuse d^gnorance, et chez la 
plus parte d^entre elles, j'ai trouvee une instruction variee 
jointe h une extreme finesse d'esprit, une connoissance 
souyent approfondie des diff^rentes litteratures de TEurope, 
et une grkce d'elocution que pourraient envier beaucoup 
de Frangaises. C^est surtout chez les jeunespersonnes que 
ces qualit6s se font plus particuli^rement remarquer : cela 
prouverait que depuis le dernier si^cle, Teducation des 
femmes en Russie a pris une direction nouvelle, et que ee 
qui a pu 6tre vrai il-y-a trente ans, a cess^ de F^tre au- 
jourd^hui. II est assez commun de rencontrer a Peters- 
bourg des demoiselles parlant avec une 6gale facility le 
Frangais, TAllemand, PAnglais, et le Russe. J^en pour- 
rais citer qui ^crivent dans ces quatres langues, et dont le 
Btyle est remarquable par une rare correction jointe k une 
grande elegance." 

Foreigners . are not agreed on the subject of female 
beauty at St. Fetersburgh. In general, it may be said, 
that the ladies are not so strikingly handsome as in Eng- 
land ; but to*this assertion there are a great many excep- 
tions. Speaking at random on a subject of such delicacy, 

I may safely quote the Countess W herself, as most 

of the distinguished people of this country bave had a full 
cypportunity of knowing her, during her stay in England ; 
the Countess Z , without question, one of the handsom- 
est women in Europe ; the Princess Sophie G , young 

and beautiful ; with several others, whose names have escaped 
my memory, as among .the exceptions. In alluding to 
the personal appearance of the ladies at St. Fetersburgh, 
I do not mean to enter on the question, whether Rus- 
sian women are in general handsome or the reverse ; my 
observations relate simply to the females that I met 
with in the best society of that capital, whether really 


Russian, or more likely, Polish, Livonian, EsthoniaD, or 
German, but still forming part of the population of that 

A very good opportunity of seeing the several charac- 
ters of female beauty occurs whenever they are assembled 
together at a soiree, or reunion^ at the houses of people of 
rank. These soirees take place frequently in St. Peters- 
burgh, without any written invitation or cards, but simply 
by reciprocal verbal communications among the friends 
and acknowledged visitors of the party at whose house they 
are to be held. These reunions differ from both the cofi- 
versazione^ and the fetes priies. I shall give a sketch 
of one of the former only, which may be assumed as pretty 
nearly the model of all of them. Madame de S ■, mo- 
ther-in-law to an old acquaintance of mine, Count de 

B , who had resided as Russian Commissioner at 

St. Helena, during Bonaparte^s confinement in that Islaod, 
introduced me to General and Madame B — . P — ; the 
former of whom had once been Minister from Russia at 
Rio Janeiro, and had been twice in England, of the man- 
ner and language of which country he was so passionately 
fond, as to have acquired the surnajne of Anglomane. The 
people began to assemble at ten oVlock, and in about an 
hour's time the principal rooms were crowded, but not to suf- 
focation. On the arrival of our carriage, the private street- 
door was opened by two Swiss in their gala^liveries» and 
several more gigantic footmen in blue liveries, with broad 
silver lace scattered all over them, lined the hall and stairs 
up to the landing of the principal floor, where six valets- 
de^pied, in the plain dress of smart English grooms of the 
chamber, and powdered, introduced the party as they ar- 
rived, announcing them not with the stentorian voice which 
resounds through the halls of Grosvenor-square, and causes 
the proud hearts of some of the visitors to dilate, while 


it makes the minor importance of others shrink into insig- 
nificance; but privately to the hospitable hosts of the 
mansion. The suite of apartments into which we were 
ushered, though not large were striking from the rich- 
ness of their decorations. Paintings hung in every room^ 
some of them of great value. The tables were groaning 
under their rich ornaments, and that common appendage 
to all the tine houses in St Petersburgh, mirrors of exces- 
sive dimensions, reflected a hundred times, by their rela* 
tive position, the company and the decorations, over 
which was thrown a blaze of light from innumerable wax 
tapers in every part. The last room of the suite was^ as 
usual, the state bed-chamber. A rich screen wa$ placed 
before the bed. The floors vf ere parquet es^ and without 
carpet. We were severally presented to the daughter of 

our host, the Princess Sophia G , justly considered a 

very handsome lady. I conversed a great deal with the 
General, who speaks English fluently, and who ci fur el d 
mesure as the company came in, was kind enough to ac- 
quaint me in my quality of a total stranger, with their name, 
rank and connection. Most of the fashionable world, as I 
afterwards understood from competent judges, and all the 
corps diplomatique^ amongst whom I recognised M. Dis- 
browe, who with his amiable lady enjoyed a well deserved 
popularity at St. Petersburgh, were present on this occasion. 
It would be impossible to single out those among the fair 
sex who seemejd to attract most attention ; but it is also 
just to remark, that this brilliant assembly oflered more 
than one specimen of Russian female beauty. No one who 
has seen the two daughters of Prince D ; or the Prin- 
cess Pauline G , whose expression of face is very re- 
markable ; or Mademoiselle R , Demoiselle d'honneur 

to the Empress, who retains, though bom in Russia, a 
good deal of the marked, arch, and impressive physiognomy 
VOL. II. 2 a 


of the Italian family from which the is defended, can 
agree with the author of the Tableau de St. Petersbourg^ 
in thinking thie ladies of that capital destitute of penoml 
attractions. It was, however, agreed on all hands, that 
next to the daughter of our host, the last mentioned young 
lady was the prettiest woman present ; yet some who are 
more accustomed than I have any pretensions to be, to 
survey the splendid assemblies of fashion, were of opinion 
that the Countess 8h , a tall and well-made person, with 
a very pleasing countenance and beautiful complexion; 

and also one of the Mademoiselles Pear , might have 

disputed the palm of pre-eminence with the young lady of 

We had some Italian vocal music in the first instance, 
when the sairie changed into a regular ball, by which 
time it was pretty nearly impossible to move through any 
of the rooms, even those in which the most grave of the 
company were assembled aroimd card tables. Now 
I presume that a ball in St. Petersburgh must be 
something like A ball any where else, except that wme 
other national dance, beudes those eternal avant ituXj ^ 
dos a dos, is likely to be performed by the young people; 
and so it was in reality at the ball of General P— — '9 
which I found, on inquiry, to resemble iVt toto the bath 
given by any other family of rank in the capital, and may 
therefore be taken as a specim^ of the whole. My ex- 
f perience on this head is very limited. I think I attended 

another on a much larger scale, and in a mansion three 
times the size ; but the performances were the same ; the 
spirit, the dances, the good understanding between pazt- 
ners, one and the same thing. The first dance which I saw, 
I believe they told me, was called la Promenade, and a very 
convenient mode of opening a ball it is. It seems that any 
gentleman may propose to a lady to take a tour widi him; 
and I found that the Chaperons themselves, however gra^ 


•ad matroBlgr^ waere indoded in this prelude. The pro 
mcnade tidces pluct first through aU the suite of ropms in 
a sort of saunteriag proeession, and next round the ball- 
room ; after which, the ladies take thdr seat> and there is an 
end of it. Waltzes began soon after, a»d here the affair was 
fiuT' otherwise ammated. Ladies are invited without. any 
prerioiiB introduction, and go round generally but oaee with 
the same cavalier, and have no sooner taken their seats, than 
anodier saitor presents himsdf for th^ same honour. This 
whirling of persons and btains round a large room must make 
the young ladies tolerably giddy, and lasts rather too long. 
PrcDdi contra-dances were next introduced in divided sets, 
and much in the same way, I presume, as they are ar- 
ranged and danced in King-street; and here the ladies 
had an opportunity of displaying their savoir-faire in the 
most nonchalanU manner imaginable. But from my heart, 
I pitied the gentlemen : in my life, I never saw any thing so 
]ack-a-daisicaL True, it is the fashion for the cavalier not 
to lift himself a hair's^breadth from the ground as he 
strata through the mazes of the ehaine Anglaisty and the 
€ku9$ex9 croisez ; but surely nothing can appear more pitia- 
ble than a well-bred gentleman striving to get through 
an *^en avant &eul^ amid a square of tittering young 
damaeb, and t%ht«l4»ed exquisites. Such things, I pre- 
sttme, take plaoe in St. Petersburgh because they are 
known to exist in every other capital in Europe ; and I 
believe that fisdiionable people never require a stronger 
wMon for their ** sayings and doings." 

I shall not attempt to describe the Maxzurka^ a dance 
which followed next, and which acknowledges a Polish 
ovigin. It is both pretty and tiresome : marchings, waltz- 
Wig, and striking^ of the feet against the pavement^ are its 
thr^ leafing features, aad the wildness of the musical ac 
ipaniment is velry singular. 


Refreshments were most plentifully supplied. Indeed 
they may be said to have showered in at every minute. 
Ices of all sorts and shapes, bonJnmSy confitures^ and 
exotic fruits, were constantly to be met with in every 
one of the rooms, brought in by the six or eight grooms 
of the chamber, before mentioned, who tried to penetiAte 
through the multitude of decorated visitors with as litde 
fracas as possible. 

How the thing ended I know not ; for I took advantage 

of Count De B and his bride's offer to take me 

home at half-past one o'^clock in the morning, when the 
bustle was at its maximum, and was glad to find myself 
once more installed in my quiet chamber. I had not, for 
fifteen years before, made my appearance in a crowded 

I believe that in describing the house of the nobleman 
with whom I was staying at St. Petersburgh, and the in- 
terior of that in which the ball took place, I have given an 
idea of what the mansions of the great are at St. Feten- 
burgh. They differ little from the great hotels of the 
nobility, entre cour et jardin^- to be met with in the 
Faubourg St. Germain, at Paris, except that many of the 
former are much larger, and contain innumerable suites of 
apartments of every description. The entrance to all the 
mansions is by a private door placed alongside of the 
great or carriage-gate, which latter is always kept wide 
open till late at night, and leads to a spacious yard, in 
which enormous quantities of fire-wood are piled on one 
side, and around which are the four sides of the building. 
Under the great carriage gateway there is generally ano- 
ther doubly-glazed folding-door for receiving people on 
grand occasions, leading directly to the foot of the grand 
staircase ; but the smaller or private door in the street ii 
thiat which is always used. This is also glazed, so that 


the porter, whose insignia of office are an ample square 
lively coat, with a laced cocked hat, and a wide belt, like- 
iriae laoed, thrown over one of the shoulders, can see 
the visitors approaching, and suffers them neither to l>e 
detained outside, nor to have the trouble of knocking. 

The master of the house occupies chiefly the ground 
floor, with his study, receiving room, waiting room, and 
private cabinet. It is placed as near as possible to the 
street«door, and is raised on a basement, under which there 
tte generally mezzanines, or small shops. The stairs are 
mostly of the same coarsely grained granite, which I ob- 
served in the street, and which is not polished. They are not 
so frequently scoured as the English stairs; and the addition 
of a narrow carpet in the centre is peculiar only to a few 
houses. There are seldom those elegant and light iron or 
bronzed balustrades, or highly polished mahogany banister 
tops, which sei-ve, among many other accessories, to set off 
an English staircase ; nor are the stairs so brilliantly illu- 
minated at night. The staircase is square, with high walls, 
lighted by three or four windows, and decorate<t with 
statues, busts, and often with pictures. 

At the top of the great staircase is an ante-room, 
in which there are always a great many servants ; for 
these invariably follow their master or mistress up stairs 
to receive cloaks, wrappings, furs, shoes, galoshes, flannel 
boots, and douilliettes, which are cast off in this ante-room, 
and never before. While I am on the subject of servants 
in the great Russian families, I may just observe, that al- 
though the practice is said to have been in a measure modi- 
fied since 1812, still the number of them is really astonish- 
ing ; the more so^ as there is in fact no occupation for 
the tenth part of them, particularly in families that are 
evidently in straitened circumstances. ^* I have seen 
repeatedly,^ said a Russian officer to me, occupying a 


distinguished sitoation at fit Petersburgb, ^* in the houie 
of noblemen or persons high in office, Ax, eight, aad tai 
servants, in different costumes, waiting in an ante^ooiDi 
doing positively nothing^and tliese formed but a smdlpart 
of the establishment. For in a great house, not only there 
are, as I dare say there are in the houses of the great in 
England, an intendant, a tnaitre iTkotelyeeveanl grooms of j 
the chamber, the lady's footmen and footboys, and the 
gentleman's valet and footmm, but also the MommdUer^ 
the chasseur, the Sehweiss, the courreurs, the Jrotsunf aad 
porteurs of wood and water, those who Ught the stoves, 
the dvemiei, and again the cook, the marmitom, with a 
long list of etceteras,' besides a whole string of ladies' 
waiting-women, and a host of peasants about the yard, 
stable, coach-house, and outer offices, coachmen and wider 
coachmen, postilions and outriders. But what is worse 
than this is, that all and each of these people, when once 
established in a house, multiply in an astonishing ratio; 
first, because wives are brought in ; next, because children 
are bom; thirdly,- because relations are admitted; andlastiy^ 
because friends will be treated, and made to partake of the 
general cocagna.^ **When I married,^' continued my fiiend, 
'^ I was determined that none but really necessary people 
should remain in my household, and I cut down my list to 
forty of them ; but to my great surprise, three or four 
years afterwards, I -discovered that they had nearly doubled. 
In every other country but in Russia, a nobleman woukl be 
satisfied with tfaiee, four, or five servants to wait at taUe; 
here, on the contrary, one is stationed behind each chair. 
Until very lately (and indeed in many of the principal pro- 
vinces, and at the country-houses of the great, the practice 
still prevails), there was a servant in every room to receive 
orders, and one or two little boys,-stationed at each doer of 
the numerous rooms en^uite : and these perfivmed ^^ 


office that bells noir perform ; but aipcesthe introduction of 
the latter convenienoe, the att^dance of these young mes^ 
tengers has been dispensed with. The Countess Orloff 
has so many servants and other persons in her suite at 
Moscow, that she is obliged to have an hospital purposely 
for them when they are ill. I believe they are seldom 
less than 800 in number. But with all these regiments of 
domestics, there is not a housemaid anywhere, either to 
make your bed or to dust your room, both operations 
being performed by men, than which nothing can be more 
odious in my sight^' To the truth of the latter observation 
and conclusion, I can bear witness. It is the general prac- 
tice, and therefore useless to complain; but during the 
time of my remaining in St. Petersburgh, I never once 
cast my eye on that useful servant mentioned last by my 
Russian acquaintance. 

I believe we were left in the ante-room with the domes- 
tics, when I began this long digression. From the ante- 
room one enters the several principal drawing-rooms en 
smite, which are fitted up in a style of magnificence seldom 
met with in London, but, like those of Paris, mostly desti- 
tute of furniture in the centre, though well lined with it all 
round. The floor is, as in Paris, sl parquet of two or more 
<Ufierently coloured woods, which is highly polished^ from 
time to time, in the same manner as in the Parisian houses. 
After the drawing-rooms, come what are called the ladies' 
apartments, also en suite, and of various sizes. I have seen 
aome, where there were as many as ten and fifteen rooms, 
including three and sometimes four very large withdraw- 
ing or state rooms. The more commcm number is about 
five or six. Acajou and Carelia poplars are the woods most 
employed in furniture, with French polish; but other 
▼aloable woods are also used occauonally. The curtains 
are always of rich ulk, and with suigle draperies; the 


walls are painted a fresco j or hung with silks, or covered 
with valuable pictures. The plafonds, which are always 
very high, have a rich cornice, either of white stucco, or 
with bold carvings, or the latter are richly gilt ; and the 
whole area of the ceiling is painted in medallions, arabesques, 
mythological groups, &c. in distemper colours, presenting 
a most agreeable sight. Few rooms have any very magni- 
ficent chandeliers ; but some tolerably handsome, and gilt, 
by Russian artists, who are very skilful in this operation, 
are common in every great house and every room. Mirrors 
are to be found in profusion, and of large dimensions. The 
beads and bevellings of door panels, window-shutters, &c. 
are in the majority of cases thickly overlaid with gold; 
and, in addition to a variety of ottomans, chaWs, fauteuih, 
marble tables, large malachite vases, and bronze candela- 
bra, all of which are on as large a scale as the man- 
sions themselves, I observed, in almost every room, large 
portable screens, of very elegant design and form, the 
frame being generally made of some rate wood, and one- 
half of the panels filled with magnificent and large plate 

I will not undertake to enumerate all the most striking 
palaces inhabited by the great in St. Petersburgh ; but I 
may mention just as they present themselves to my me- 
mory, a few besides those which I have already alluded 
to in a former part of this *' Picture." Thus the new 
colossal structure, known under the name of Palais La- 
banofiT, in the Admiralty square, is a building which, for 
size, seems more calculated for a prince than a private in- 
dividual. The very striking mansion of Monsieur Miatleff, 
which formerly belonged to the great Naryschkine; the 
palace Strogonoff, that of Count Sheremetieff, and finally 
Prince Dolgorouky's mansion, formerly the property of 
Count Moussin Pouschkine, with a hanging garden, cut 


into terraces, are imposiDg ' architectural objects even in 
such a capital as St. Petersburgh, where architectural de- 
coration is carried to its utmost limits. 

In many of the palaces thus internally arranged and de- 
corated, nightly assemblies take place, or conversazioni^ to 
one or two of which I went, as the best mode of becoming 
quickly acquainted with the manners arid state of what is 
considered the best society in St. Petersburgh. Here I ob- 
served much less reserve than in the case of fites priiesy or 
formal parties; and it was gratifying to see in this capital, 
that convivial spirit, marked by extreme politeness and dis- 
tinguished manners, which is said formerly to have charac- 
terized the highest ranks of society all over civilized £u-. 
rope; but which political epidemics seem nearly to have 
obliterated elsewhere. The Ministers of the Emperor's 
Household; the Grand Echanson, Count Pouschkine ; the 
Maitre de la Cour, Count Laval ; Prince Dolgorouky, one 
of the Ecuyers; the Grand Master of the Ceremonies, 
Count Stanislaus Potochi ; Count Basil Zavadovsky ; the 
President of the Council Kotchoubey ; the Minister for 
Foreign Affairs ; the English and French Ambassadors ; 
the Princesses Eourakine and Vladimir Galitzine, the 
Countess Gourieff, and some others, are among those at 
whose houses select parties of friends assemble, who attend 
without invitation when at home. Thev are seldom without 
a reunion. There is not an evening during the winter, in 
which a foreigner, properly introduced, may not make the 
tour of three, four, and five great houses, besides complying 
with the more formal invitations which he may receive. 

The Russians of St. Petersburgh, indeed, seem very 
fond of society and mix happily together. I saw none of 
the nonsense talked of in some recent travels, of men 
and women keeping separate on such occasions, as if 
they were in a Lutheran church ; but the intercourse 


seemed perfectly genend. They are also fond of visit- 
ing, and that upon the same principle; and^ a person 
who wishes to stand well with them, will do right to 
keep a correct list of- all his acquaintances and friends, 
their birthdays and Saints-days, or onoraastic-days, and be 
sure to wait upon them with his congratulations on all those 
occasions. I have known a valuable connexion lost for want 
of punctuality in doing this ; and on the other hand, I 
have heard of people who being idle, and liking the thing 
well, have gone every day a round of visits to celebrate the 
festivals of their acquaintances. I one day met a gentle- 
man who assured me that he was fairly knocked up and 
breathless, from having paid his respects and said many 
pretty things to all the Katenkas of rank in St. Peters- 
burgh, whom he had visited on the occaaon of St. Cathe- 
rine's day. But the worst of it is, that on such occasions 
the visitor has no chance of fmding, at some of the houses, 
a friendly ^^ not at home'' to afford him a pause — ^for all the 
Saints are at home on their days. 

The Court Ffites are also numerous. I was at none, 
and therefore cannot say what they are ; but Captain Jones 
has described them very recently, and I refer my readers, 
who are curious to know what takes place on all such 
great occasions and ceremonies, to him, as well as to those 
Englishmen who attended the coronation of the present Em- 
peror, for an account of the magnificence said to be dis- 
played, either at the Winter Palace, when both the haU of 
St. George and the Salle Blanche are thronged with ten 
thousand individuals ; or at the Taurida Palace, where 
half that number are invited to a masked balL I am as- 
sured by persons upon whose judgment I can rely, that the 
splendour of the Imperial C<nirt of St. Petersbucgh on 
gala days and f^tes is superior to any thing in any other 
Court in Europe, and is oftener displayed. The great 


£6tes and ceremonies which took phee, shortly before our 
arrival at .St. Petenbuif^, on the ocoaaion of the chiis- 
temng of the Giand-duchess Cathferine, daughter of the 
Gnmd-duke Michael, .and of the Grand-duke Constan- 
tine die second son of the £n>peror> are said to have been 
of this description. 

We dined generally, . and so did every body else I be- 
lieve, at five o\)lock. In one of the principal drawing- 
rooms there isasmall table set out with a number of small 
dishes, containing carved cold tongue, dried herrings, ca- 
viar, preserves, anchovies, thin slices of bread and cheese, 
with small bottles of liqueurs, or brandy: most of thef 
guests partake of some of these before dinner. 

On entering the dining-room, the table-decked out with 
a gilt or alver plateau of great valuQ, in the centre, sur- 
rounded by vases. of flowers, groups of fruit, and baskets 
of dry cot^uresj excites the attention of the stranger. 
Around this the guests take their seats with that intui- 
tive attention to distinction of rank, which good breeding 
naturally imparts to. people in every country. It is not true, 
however, (at least not true in about twenty of the first 
Russian houses in St. Petersburgh, with which I was ac- 
quainted,) as both English and French writers have, even 
so late as last year, asserted, that the ladies sit all on one 
fiide^ that die guests of an inferior rank are all compelled 
to take the bottom of the table, and that only the worst 
fare and a particular set of trash wines are allowed to the 
latter. I never remarked any thing of the kind ; and in- 
deed th^e is no bottom of the table, since both the master 
and mistress take their places in the centre, and are conse- 
quently equally distant from their guests at each end of it, 
where I often remarked persons of the first rank and 

The Marchese Cgraccioli, who was a great g0ttrmand. 


and spent several years in England as Ambassador from 
Naples, used to observe, in reference to English c(X>kery, 
*^ Il-y-a en Angleterre so^xante sectes religieuses diffierentes, 
et une seule sauce, le melted butter ! quel pays !'' Had 
the Marquess been Ambassador at St. Petersburgh instead, 
he would have been spared the trouble of such an anti- 
thesis. I doubt whether any other national cookery can 
boast of a greater variety of dishes or sauces than the Rus- 
sian, and I feel convinced that Maitre Anonymey the editor 
of the Almanack des Gourmands, will be considered as not 
having done one half of his diity if he expires before he has 
opened to the public the budget of Russian dishes. These 
are presented to the guests by the maitre d^httel and his 
assistants, already carved at the side tables, and one after 
the other, with the pleasing attention of whispering into 
your ears the nomenclature of each dish. One comes and 
another goes, and a servant follows with a decanter in each 
hand. The first commends to your attention a little va- 
reniky ; the second finding that you have already before 
you a dish of stchy, brings round the rastingay^ or oblong 
pastry, to eat with it. He of the bottles then thinks it high 
time to remind you of such cordial beverages as Cham- 
pagne, Burgundy, Lafitte, Pacharete, Vin du Commandeur, 
du Johannisberg,de laCom^te, and soon, until you know not 
which choice to make. Mine was the easiest task on such 
occasions, for I took none, and I am the better for it : but 
the quantity of champagne that I saw drank in St. Peters- 
burgh actually astounded me. I feel confident that there 
must be another Champagne country somewhat nearer to 
Russia than the French champagne, to supply what is ac- 
tually consumed of that wine. In general the Russians are 
excellent connoisseurs in wine. I have often been present 
at learned discussions among them on this subject, and par- 
ticularly on the wines of the Crimea, which a chartered 


company, Bupported and encouraged by the Emperor and 
several high characters, is endeavouring to multiply, im- 
prove, and introduce at the St. Petersburgh tables. They 
may succeed. But, k propos of vareniky ! It is a dish of 
which many are very fond, made of a thin paste of buck- 
wheat flour, not baked, having fresh cream-cheese inside, 
melted butter thrown over it, and eaten with sour cream. 
Yet this heterogeneous kind of fare is nothing compared to 
another called Batviniay which is, indeed, the king of the 
Ollas, as may be judged from the enumeration of its ingre- 
dients, which are as follow : Evass, (the vehicle,) kislistchi, 
salt-fish, craw-fish, spinage, salt-cucumbers, and onions. 
These form a mixture(a mixture with a vengeance !) which is 
used and served up with a piece of ice in the middle. When 
the late Emperor Alexander, who is said to have been very 
fond of this national dish, was at the congress of Vienna, he 
ordered it to be presented at a dinner at which the corps 
diplomatique had been invited, and turning to a noble and 
military lord, more remarkable for blunt straightforward- 
ness than machiavellian diplomacy, asked him how he 
found the Batvinia. ^^ Je le trouve detestable. Sire,'' was 
the answer. 

But the fish 1 Oh the fish is delectable at St. Peters- 
burgh ! They have no cod and no turbot, but commend 
me to the sterlet^ the sovereign of the fish for the table, 
and to the soudaky and to the sieg, and to the yerschiy and 
the kilky, and so on to the end of a long list ; but of these 
more anon, when I shall introduce to the notice of my 
readers the fish* markets of St. Petersburgh. 

Count Pouschkine, the Grand Echanson to the Emperor, 
who to many other excellent qualities, unites that of being 
a member of the Amphitryon Club, insisted on my tasting 
a real Russian dinner, and actually took the trouble of 
ordering one on purpose at his house, to which a great 


nuniber of persons of disttnotioii were iimled. TMs proved 
a complete lesson to me on Russiaa cookery. By w»y of 
gaining personal experience I tasted of eTery things and 
took down the name o£ Ul that I tasted ; die result of 
whkh was, that I got lb Kst of dishes, and an indigestion 
from eating them. Figure to youradf, gentle reader, the 
state in wUch Dr.Paas's *^ cauldron'' must have been with 
itchy and borsch soups, the one with cabbage, the other 
with fermented beeUroot ; Baatingaai and Crougloi Pirrog 
(a patty with fowl and eggs) ; stewed sterlet ; quails slowly 
roasted in a stew*pan, and covered with thick sour cream ; 
stewed pork with mushrooms and truffles ; jtUnottes and 
white asparagus ; Kascha and Kascha puddii]^ ; frwnagty 
caviar, compotesy Astracan grapes, and Crimea apples; 
co9^tur€Sf sweet wines, and draughts of Kwass, or Kis- 
listchi, the former being a species of brewed fermented 
liquor, prepared from rye-flour and rye and barley mak, 
ci which the latter is a strong^ effervescent variety : fsncy^ 
I say, ai this safisly lodged within the parUtes of a 
single stomach, and think, oh think, of the night that 
must have followed ! 

However, the Rusman noblemen do not all dine in this 
way, and some are tr]ring to introduce .the fashionable Eng- 
Urii manner of deckidg the table and dinirig, — uniting with 
it excellent French cookery, which, after alibis the best, and 
is that which is more commonly to be found at the tables of 
the grand Seigneurs in Russia. The nobleman who is 
taking the lead in iutroduoing the English style of dining 
with the richly chasedeonM'-dbhes, aold the top and bottom 
dishes concealed by splendid covers of silver, is Count 
Stanislaus Potocfai, the Grand Master of the Ceremonies, 
brother-in-law to Countess Woronzow, yrtH known in this, 
as :well as in his native country, for his bot^tcn and great 
wealth. I once had the honour of dining at his taUe, 


when Count Nesaelrode, Prince Volkoosky^ Counts Wo- 
nmzow, StrogonofiP, Qrloff, Matusseyitcb, Baron Nicolai, 
MonA. Poletica, and some of their ladies, with others, 
were of the party. I shall not attempt to describe the 
splendour of the entertainment which was given in his 
library, forming a gaUery magnificendy fitted up, one 
hundred feet in length, and forty feet wide. After diur- 
ner Count Potochi showed us the extensive and costly 
improvements then in progress in his. mansion, which 
when furnished will, for richness of decoration^ sise 
and number of the apartments, and taste displayed through- 
out its internal arrangement, eclipse many of the palaces 
<tf the Great, that now bear away the palm of supe- 
riority in St Petersburgh. We were particularly struck 
with a grand Gothic ball-room, of unusually large propor- 
tions, whose vaulted ceiling springs aloft about sixty feet, 
and rests on pillared walls, pierced with a double range of 
lofty Grothic windows, bearing emblazoned upon their 
stained glass the arms of the noble host, and throwing a 
softened light on a tessellated pavement of black ebony 
and white Carelia poplar. 

The English in St. Petersburgh preserve at their din- 
ners theur national manners in every respect intact, except- 
ing that they have adopted, and seem pleased with some 
of the Russian didies and beverages, particularly the beer 
made there. In the centre of their table also is introduced, 
from the first, the dessert, as a permanent decoration ; and, 
with ooe or two exceptions, the custom of the ladies with- 
drawing before the gentlemen is abolished. 

In both the Russian and English houses, the greater part 
of the company retire after dinner, disposing of themselves 
in a variety of ways to spend the evening. In many in- 
stances, however, the master and mistress of the house 
remain and receive other company, or some of the dinner 


guests return ; and a species of agreeable and pleasing 
reunion takes place, in which music, conversatioD, and 
cards are introduced The latter amusement, indeed, I 
seldom failed to remark as being very general, except in 
the house of the nobleman with whom I resided, and one 
or two others, in which cards were never resorted to. These 
sans fafons quiet parties, to which a stranger receives 
a general invitation, and at which one is in reality 
welcome, are rendered still more agreeable from the large 
number of apartments through which you are at liberty to 
roam, and the variety of amusements they afford. One of the 
rooms frequently contains a billiard table, which is always 
occupied by players and spectators. Next to it is a smok- 
ing apartment on the one side, and one or two rooms with 
whist tables on the other ; and, by the bye, I may say that 
in no country are fashionable people more fond of whist, 
or, as I am informed, better players at it, than in Russia. 
In the succeeding apartments the ladies^ card-tables are 
arranged ; and lastly come the purely conversational rooms, 
with books, and prints, and drawings, and objects of curiosi- 
ty and virtHy to engage the attention of the visitors withal. 

The ladies are particularly partial to a game at cards 
called La Mouche^ the mysteries of which I did not at- 
tempt to decipher for the benefit of my fair readers, but 
which seemed to me to partake somewhat of the single- 
handed loo, and the more fashionable game of ^' icartity' 
which has so unfortunately of late icarte much of the 
bienseance of society, and supplanted more rational occu- 

One of the pleasantest houses of the latter description in 
St. Petersburgh, and which I frequented with real pleasure, 
because I was sure of meeting there persons distinguished 
for something besides rank, and of being received with 
sincere and unaffected cordiality, is that of Monsieur 


Boulgakoff, to whose official rank and situation in one of 
the departments of Groverninent I have already alluded, and 
who with his lady, the most amiable person imaginable^ is 
for ever striving to please and oblige his numerous and 
attached visitors. 

» In the course of my conversation with some of the oldest 
noblemen of the Court, I learned that Russian society 
among the great was considered to have improved materi- 
ally since it had lost the pompous and almost kingly style 
of living which characterised it during the reign of Cathe- 
rine. On one of these occasions, I was informed by a 
grand officer of the Court, who had been a frequent eye- 
witness to the facts he described, that the late Chancel- 
lor of all the Orders of Knighthood in Russia, and Grand 
Chamberlain, Monsieur Naryschkine, lived, when resident 
in that capital, in the greatest magnificence. He was the 
last of those Russian noblemen who almost vied with their 
Sovereign in the splendour of their mansion, their equipage, 
and their entertainments. His house, which was on a 
large scale, was thrown open every evening from dusk 
till a late hour, and filled to excess, although upwards of 
twenty spacious rooms were used on the occasion. Here 
every thing that could seduce the imagination, please the 
eye, and satisfy the appetite of a very Apicius, was to be 
found in profusion. To the individual fond of staking his 
thousands on the turn of a card or the throw of a die, the 
accommodation was unlimited. In affording this facility to 
his guests, the Grand Chamberlain was not singular, as high 
play is of all times and of all nations. Music, both vocal and 
instrumental, entertained the many who either liked it, or 
affected to do so. Dancing, lounging, talking aloud, bois- 
terous laughing, soft whisperings, agreeable rencontres, and 
even intellectual conversation, with the incessant to and 
Iro bustling of laced attendants, obeying the least sign or 


token of command, presented a spectacle not to be met with 
at present in any of the residences of the great in St. Peten- 
burgh, although by no means rare at that time. Naiyseh- 
ktne's great delight was to fill his mansion. The morning was 
often spent in seeking for people to whom he could addresa 
an invitation, and when once introduced, every guest was 
heartily welcomed whenever he chose to attend. It was in 
this assemblage of all that is rich, gay, great, and illustri- 
ous, that the finest of their sex in St. Petersburgh might 
often be found. At a late hour, a magnificent supper was 
served on the grandest scale imaginable. My infonsaot, 
who had been in the confidence of the noble master of the 
house, and in the habit of frequenting it almost every 
nighti assures me that the expense of such entertaiii- 
ments could not have been less than twenty thousand rou- 
bles daily, and that every other part of his establishmeDt 
was costly in proportion. The fortune ci this extraor- 
dinary nobleman was immense. He spent a great part of 
it in France ; whence he made a short tour to England, 
where I had occasion to attend him in a professional capa- 
city. Shortly after his return to Paris in 1826 he fell 
seriously ill, and sent for an Italian physician settled at 
Strasburg, whom he had never seen bef(»«, but who ar- 
rived only a short time before his death, and for the mdan- 
cboly satisfaction only of embalming the remains, (an ope- 
ration which, I understand, proved ineffectual, from its 
having been indifierently performed.) These were escorted 
to St. Petersburgh by another medical attendant, where^ 
after having been exposed in a chapelle ardente for some 
days, they were buried with great pomp in the small 
church of St. Alexander Nevskoi. He left sous, one of 
whom, as a general ofiicer in the Imperial service, greatly 
distinguished himself, being brave as a lion, and as qnrit^ 
as he is brave. 


Althougli the practice of keeping open house on a scale 
of such magnitude is completely abolished in St. Pet^a- 
burgh at present, there are still, as I have elsewhere ob- 
served, some great families who collect together numerous 
parties every night, and to whom the facility of introduce 
tioD is nearly as great as in the case of the late Grand 
Chamberlain. But St. Petersburgh is- undergoing, m re- 
gard to the manners and tone of its society, precisely the 
change which every other capital in Europe has ex- 
, from show, number, and noise, to a tasteful 
arrangement of chaste ornaments and useful furniture, a ser 
leetion of a few persons, and quiet conversation. The mid^ . 
ni^ht revelry and the fancy dishes are only permitted on a 
few occafflons, when, after a fatiguing succession of dances, 
or the too protracted harmony of a modern private concert, 
nature seems really to call for support. The practice of 
early suppers, however, still prevails to some extent, even 
where a very small circle has assembled. The hour at which 
dinner is served is so much too early in general, that an- 
other, repast seems almost indispensable. 

The Bourgeoisie at St. Petersburgh have their par* 
ties and their amusements, and I understand that they 
are equally hospitable on those occasions. Some of the 
Rusaian merchants, who have accumulated great wealth, 
are sumptuously lodged, and will from time to time give 
gmnd entertainments in their magnificent houses to a vast 
eoneoorse of people, when, perhaps, they may be living o^ 
die humblest fare in the bosoms of their own families. A 
hcNiae of this description was pointed out to me in the 
Troit, which belongs to a general dealer, named Pono- 
BMieff, and others, looking like palaces in several parts of 
thedty, and said to be furnished in the most splendid 
style, occupied by Borissoff and Haritchkoff, hemp and 
taflow merchants. It is seldom that the society of these 

2 B 2 


persons is of that general nature to admit the introduction 
of foreigners. The English and Russian merchants, though 
on the best footing imaginable, carry on no other inter- 
course beyond commercial transactions. However, the real 
Russian merchant, or man of business, is not unmindful 
of the pleasure of associating with his equals; and even 
the most toilsome labour, or penurious disposition, leaves 
him some feeling for the pleasures of society. The 
Burgher's club is a proof of this propensity. The Ame- 
ricans have a club of their own : the English have also a 
club, or rather there is a club under that name ; but in 
which Germans, as well as Russians, are admitted, and 
form a principal part of tlie members. I was introduced 
to it by Dr. Leighton, and dined there with him. The 
club consists of S50 members who are balloted for. Stran- 
gers to be introduced must have their names entered every 
day by one of the members ; a regulation found so incon* 
vehient, that but few avail themselves of this privil^ 
The house is commodious, but the rooms are nother so 
well furnished nor lighted up as in the clubs of London, 
or at Frankfort. Play is the principal source of amuse- 
ment, but not to the total exclusion of more serious and 
rational ways of passing the time. All the Russian, and 
many of the foreign newspapers, among which I observed 
the English Courier, are taken in, together with some 
monthly publications ; but the collection of books is tri- 
fling indeed. There is a regular house-dinner, a la RussCy 
every day, which is much frequented. Another club, 
known by the name of the Commercial Club, is daily 
open for the admission of merchants and strangers, on 
the English Quay, in which the attendance and the din- 
ners are said to be much superior. Some of the £og~ 
Ush metchants, who frequent this club, have formed a very 
deleict and valuable library principally of English books, 


both of reference and general reading, which is placed 
under the care of Mr. Moberley, a very well-informed 
mercantile gentleman, partner to Mr. Anderson, the 
*' doyen" by seniority, and the most respected of the 
English merchants in St. Petersburgh. The late Emperor 
Alexander never passed this genuine specimen of an old 
sterling English merchant without stopping to speak to 

There are a number of families among the population 
of St. Petersburgh forming, as it were, a class of society 
apart, which consists of free people, who belong neither 
to the Church, the nobility, the public functionaries, 
nor to patented merchants. It comprehends les gens de 
lettreSf those who are engaged in the exercise of the liberal 
professions, and the artisans ; and might be said to bear 
some analogy to what in France was called the tiers-Stat. 
This class is not numerous, nor does it possess much influ- 
ence in society at St. Petersburgh. Still, among themselves, 
there is a cordial and gratifying intercourse kept up^ which 
frequently afibrds, as it did me more than once, an oppor- 
tunity of spending an hour or two in the evening among 
clever, agreeable, and well-informed persons. This class 
is designated in Russian by a particular name, which I 
have forgotten. 

Public walks in a capital may be considered as so many 
places of rhinion. In this respect St. Petersburgh need 
not envy other cities. Certainly one of the most striking 
promenades is the so often named Nevskoi* Prospekt, .a 
street running nearly in a direct line from opposite the 
Admiralty to the Monastery of St. Alexander Nevskoi^. 
for about four English miles in length. Its width, as I 
took caie to ascertain by admeasurement in both cases, is 
io many places thirty feet greater than that of Oxford- 
street; it is lined on both sides by noble mansions, 


and other buildings, of such dimensions, that the new 
houses in Regent-Street would serve as little more than the 
basement story to them. A great number of handsome 
churches, placed in the two lines of houses, serve to heighten 
the imposing character of the street. The Emperor Paul 
had ordered a broad foot promenade along the centre, 
planted with trees, with a low railing on each side, whtdi 
existed till some years after his death, and must have 
taken away a great deal from its character of grandeur. 
This arrangement was altered some years ago, and the rows 
of trees being now planted dose to the two wide granite 
trottoirsj the noble street left in the centre leaves a wide space 
to the thousands of equipages and vehicles of every descrip- 
tion that throng it at all times of the day, but particularly 
between twelve and three o'clock. As the principal Magr 
sins des Modes^ and silk-mercers, are in this street, the 
helles of St. Petersburgh are to be seen crowding in thor 
carriages to their Howell and James, just as English beUa 
do in London. Occasionally one sees in the winter a few 
distinguished pedestrians, of both sexes, walking wrapped 
in their costly furs on the sunny side of the Nevskoi; and 
once or twice I have noticed every eye directed towards 
a solitary English lady riding in the fashion of her countiyi 
followed at a great distance by a groom : but, in gene- 
ral, it is as a carriage*drive that the Nevskoi is cde- 
brated. Walking goes on more briskly, and is even con- 
sidered ** the great gOy^ during the winter at about two 
o'clock, and not till after sunset in the summer, on both 
the English and the Russian quay, or the Dvortsovaya and 
Anglinskaya Nab^reje-naya. These are, indeed, the ren- 
dezvous where most of the gens a Unsivy distinguished for 
rank, wealth, or notoriety, either alone or with their hdies, 
take care to show themselves, whenever the day is fine* 
They are the exchange-walks^ as it were, of the fashion- 


ables, and more news is invented, more scandal promul- 
gatedy and more parties concocted in these two of the 
finest walks in Europe, than in any other part of St. Pe- 

It was any thing but summer when I left St. Peters^ 
buigh, and therefore I can know nothing from my own 
experience, of promenades during that season; but I 
Tidted what are called the Summer Gardens, in front 
of the Neya, which, I was told, are much frequented in 
the evenings during the summer months by very select com- 
pany ; the Imperial family being seen not unfrequently to 
walk in them. The train of equipages waiting outside 
for their respective owners, is, I understand, very con- 
aderable. The walks are extensive, and said to be well 
shaded and beautiful. What, however, excited my at- 
tention most, at a season when all nature^s attractions 
were laid under three feet of snow, was the railing in front 
of the gardens, acknowledged to be the most magnificent 
in Europe. It is formed by thirty-six massive Doric, pil- 
lars, of solid granite, surmounted alternately by an urn, 
and a vase, measuring altogether from the ground, upwards 
of twenty feet These are connected by an airy and taste- 
ful railing, formed of spears of wrought iron, tipped with 
the richest gilding. Three entrances interrupt the line 
with gates, which are closed at night, likewise made of 
wrought iron, beautifully decorated and worked with foliage 
and scrolls, covered with gold. The extent of this rail- 
ing, which is raised on a dwarf stylobate of granite, is 
about 700 feet. 





The Theatres. — The Great Theatre. ^ Russian Opera. — Madams 
Sbmenoff. — SAMoi'LOFF the Tenor. — Caraticdimb, the tragic 
Actor. — Russian Farces. — Grand Russian Ballet at the Open. 
—Mademoiselle Istomina. — LaBertrakd. — School forSiogiiV 
and Acting. — The Little Theatre. — The French Play. — Ma- 
dame Le Bras. — The German Comedy and German Opens. 
-^ Madame Funk. — Mademoiselle Pohlmank — Monsieor 
Schwartz — The Italian Opera at St. Petersburgh. — Signon 
Bartolucci — Mademoiselle Zamboni. — Signor Tosi. — The 
recruited Signore, at Warsaw. — - English Theatre. — Summer 
Theatres at Kamennoi and Yelaguine. — Islands. — Astley's of St. Pe- 
tersburgh^ or Cirque <f Equitation. — English Newspapers snd Rus- 
sian BiUs of the Play. — Drap9 de Lit and Mouekoirs de PmM.— 
General Imperial Direction of the Theatres^ at St. Petersburgh.^ 
New Company of Italian Singers. -^ Mademoiselle Melas.— Re- 
gulations for^ and Privileges of successful Dramatic Authors.— 
Musical Cluha.-^Soci^t^ Phiihamumique. — Colonel LvoFFand the 
Marchesa Pallavicini. — The CharUreg dela Oenir. — Italo-Ritf' 
sian Church Music. — Bortitiansky, the great Russian CompoMr* 

— The Hunting Music. — Russian Dances. — The Golubetx.— Tbe 
Cossack Dance. — Popular Sports and Direraions. — The Ice-Hills* 

— The Montagnes Russes, without Snow. — The Swaika. — The 
Jumping-Board. — Boxing, or Kulatschnol Boy. — Excess of lux- 
ury in the Head-dress of the Women. — Costume of the Rossian 
Merchants. — Reform of Manners. — Goose-fighting. — Field 
Sports. ^ Hunting the Wolf. — Hunting the Bear. — Bea>HiiBt- 
ing Party. — Description of a Bear-hunt. ^ Bear-paws, a de- 
licious dish. — Game Laws, — Horse Races. — Pleasure Boats. 

*! Allons done au grand spectacle, au Bohhoy Theairef 
said to me, a few days after our arriyal, the young rebitioD 


of Count Woronzow, whom I introduced to my readers on 
the road from Dorpat to St. Petersburgh. *^ The. cele- 
brated Russian cantatricey Madame Semenoff, sings to-night 
in the Vestalka {La Vestale)^ and a ballet is to follow, in 
which all the Russian or national dances are to be intro- 
duced.^ My readers will be pleased to recollect, that I 
mentioned, in an early chapter, the situation of the Grand 
or Imperial Theatre, so called, in contradistinction to an- 
other and a smaller one. It stands in the middle of a large 
square, on a sort of peninsula, at the western extremity of 
the second Admiralty quarter, formed by the Moika, the 
Canal of St. Catherine, and the Kroukof Canal. It is the 
production of two architects. The front and portico, in 
imitation of those of the Pantheon, are the work of Dumot, a 
French architect ; and the body of it, is that of a countryman 
of his, Mauduit, who built it, after the conflagration which 
destroyed that part of the theatre. With the exception of 
the fafade, this edifice has more the appearance of a large 
warehouse than of what it is intended for. Its interior is a 
sorry copy of one of the Parisian playhouses. It is consi; 
derably smaller than Covent Garden, and as nearly as pos- 
sible in the form of a circle, including the stage. Two 
ranges of boxes, the latter separated from one another by 
slender wooden columns which ascend from the first to the 
top of the second range, support a wide gallery, over which 
runs another, somewhat narrower ; and above this, are seye- 
ral pigeon-holes, under the very roof of the house. Beneath 
the first tier there are small private pit-boxes, and in the 
centre of the principal range is the Imperial box, distin- 
guished by four caryatides, and surmounted by the Impe- 
rial arms. Above the stage soars the Imperial eagle. 

The jnt is filled with arm-chairs, of very solid construc- 
tion, with green cushions well stufled. These are num. 
bered, beginning from near^ the orchestra, and ending as 


near to the back part of the pit as possible. The entranoe 
into the pit is .by two narrow side-doors, which are always 
opened by door-keepers, who, as well as the box and pit 
seat-keepers, are dressed in red livery frocks, with lace. 
The pit>seat8 are considered the best places, and in the 
front rows the price of them is five roubles, which is doubled 
on a benefit night. The boxes are calculated to hold bom 
ten to twelve people, and are always engaged by parties. 
They may be retained for the year; but an accidental 
visitor has no chance, as in the national theatres of Londmi 
and Paris, of getting into any of the boxes by a ticket, ex- 
cept as one of a party, or unless he chooses to take the 
whole box to himself; a system in every respect similar to 
that of the London Opera. The prices for the boxes are 
twenty-five roubles for the first, and twenty roubles for the 
second tier ; that is« one guinea the one, and eighteen shil- 
lings the other. 

The house was illuminated, in honour of the Grand-duke 
Michael, whose name day it was ; but not more than 200 
people were present. The massive girandoles^ affixed to 
the pillars, were lighted on this occasion, and the efiect 
was very striking. On ordinary representations, the au« 
dience part of the house is plunged in darkness visible, a 
practice common to most of the great opera-houses on the 
Continent. The entire building is furnished with a great 
number of doors and passages, reservoirs of water, and an 
engine in case of fire ; and during the winter it is warmed 
by concealed flues and stoves, which gave it, when I was 
present, a very genial temperature. 

The orchestra occupies a great space, and is really 
very good. The Russian opera reminds one strongly of 
the style of music and execution at the Acadinde Royak 
de MusiquBy or Opera-house at Paris. This is by no 
means an eulogium; for, unquestionably^ the grand ope- 


i«tic Style of miisic is not the forte of the French. Neither 
is their manner of declamation, I would say, vociferation, 
in singing, deserving of praise, f. shall never forget, as I 
have not since been able to put them out of my ears, the 
sharp, strained, timpano-breaking notes of Madame Bran- 
diue, and of the no less stately songstress, Madame Albert, 
whom the English public had an opportunity of hearing at 
the King's Theatre one season, when she was bold enough to 
sing in an Italian opera. Nothing but the anxiety of se- 
curing a place to witness the ballet that is to follow (and 
what sacrifice would not some people make to see the ballet 
in Paris ?) could induce a person with well organized ears 
to remain a quiet listener to one or two of the serious 


operas in which those celebrated ladies take the lead. At 
the Imperial Theatre of St. I'etersburgh the same objec- 
tion cannot, perhaps, be urged to a like extent ; for the 
talents, and above all the personal appearance of their 
prima donna^ Madame Semenoff, place this actress far 
above the two French Mesdames; but yet the effect of 
the ensemble seemed to me to be much the same in boUi 
establishments, and consequently neither of the best, nor 
of the most pleasing kind. Old SamoYloff, who at the 
age of sixty, can yet enact the part of a lover, strove to 
keep up with the exertions of Madame Semenoff; he is, 
however, positively /icrs^, and made but a sorry exhibition. 
Upon a second visit to this theatre I heard the first 
tragic actor, Caratiguine, who has probably the finest figiure 
of any performer on the stage, either in Russia or any 
where else. His wife, ci-devant, and I believe even now 
called Mademoiselle Colosoff, acts equally well on the 
Russian and French stage. The farce which followed, 
and of which, no more than of the tragedy which pre- 
ceded it, I understood not one syllable, was performed with 
much spirit and naivete. The plot appeared to me from 


the pantomimic expression of the several, actors; to be 
much the same sort of intreccio that one sees eyery whete 
else on the stage. A young girl in love with an officer ; a 
father opposed to her union with him ; a blustering good-na- 
tured uncle who helps his niece and his friend the captain ; 
a confidante and a noveUsick lady, who talks of nothing but 
ghosts and castles, with shepherds, servants, and robbers, 
were the dramatis persona : and, as usual, marriage ap- 
peared to terminate the story, but without any very in- 
teresting accident or liair^breadth escapes. The distinct 
and prosy manner of delivery of the ladies in particular, 
gave to the thing the appearance of a girPs school, more 
than of a natural meeting in society for the discussion of 
interesting matters. There is not, I understand, any very 
distinguished comic actor on the St. Petersburgh stage. 
Russian comedy is not in vogue. 

After the play one of those livery servants, whose pro- 
vince on the stage is, in general, purely locomotive and 
consists in bringing or removing tables and chairs, came 
before the drop-scene, and delivered in a bungling man- 
ner, stopping to recollect himself once or twice, a shqrt 
speech, which I interpreted to be the announcement of the 
piece for the following evening, as I heard the name of 
Tancredi and Rossini, and I observed them advertised 
in the bill. This, at all events, is unique, I believe, in 
histrionic annals. 

What interested me most was the pantomime Ballet, 
which followed, and which was truly and thoroughly 
Russian. Upwards of 400 people of all ages, men and 
women, were employed in this great spectacle, which was 
rendered doubly interesting, by the introduction of real 
Cossack horses, mounted by that singular militia ; by the 
costumes of all the different nations placed under the 
sway of Russia; and by those of the warriors belonging 
to each nation. The profusion of gold and glittering 


onuunents, particularly in the head-dress of the Russian 
and Tartar women ; the variety and singularity of the 
costumes, many of which were exceedingly pretty ; tHe 
succession of so many national dances, of most of which 
I bad never formed the least idea, and in one or two of 
which shone conspicuous the pretty and active mimic 
dancer, an ilive of Didelot, Mademoiselle Istomina, on 
whose account, duels, quarrels, and all sorts of disasters, 
have taken place, presented, even to my stoical and passive 
imagination an ensemble of amusements worthy of the 
capital I have described. No other ballet is acted but 
at the Russian Opera, and most of. the performers are 
natives. Occasionally, however, a French dance is im- 
ported. A star from the firmament of Paris, La Bertrand, 
was then monopolising the acclamations of the amateurs. 

There is, I believe, a school for singers, and another 
for dancers of both sexes in St. Petersburgh, supported 
by Government ; but it is an error into which natives 
as well as foreigneifs have fallen, to suppose, that the 
finest looking girls from the Institution of the Efifans 
Trouvis are selected for either of those purposes. I have 
the best asstu-anoes that her Majesty, the Empress-mother, 
would never sanction such a proceeding. 

The little Theatre, situated not far from the Public Li- 
brary, is more generally used for French and German 
representations. The house is neat, clean, well lighted/ 
and in general better frequented than the larger one. This, 
however, is destined to be demolished to make room for 
a more modem structure, to be erected by Rossi ai the 
end of a large square, projected in the same part of the 

The French comedy is very attractive ; there is a Mar 
dame le Bras, from the Paris theatre, who is deservedly a 
great favourite. In general, the representations are con- 
fined to light humorous farces, or vaudevilles^ in which 


species of dramatic composition the French stand unri- 
valled. Madame Paule, a pleasing actress, shines at St 
Petersburgh, in this department. As to German perform- 
ances! it was not likely that I should attend many of 
them, where I had such a variety of other resources. One 
was quite sufficient; and I selected the merriest, that 
I might laugh if I did not approve. Luckily, a farce of 
two acts, with not much of bad music, by Von Ignatz Schus* 
ter, and entitled, '^ The false or pretended Catalani," was 
performed some day in November, by all the Grerman corps 
dramatique^ consisting of eighteen performers, all enacting 
principal ' characters, besides three stars from provincial 
theatres, particularly a Madame Funk. No year, however, 
of my being pleased with her imitations of that once 
celebrated lady, whose name was taken in vain on this 
occasion, or with the thing altogether.' 

The German Opera is as firmly established and orga- 
nised at St. Petersburgh, as it is in Berlin, or at Vienna. 
The prima donna of the troop is Mademoiaelle Pohlmann» 
whose soprano voice has, perhaps, a greater extent of scale 
than most soprano-singers of the present day. She reaches 
with a firm, clear, silvery tone, as high as E flat three times 
crossed above the line, in the treble cliff. Her pendant is 
a Mons. Schwartz, one of the most bustling, voluble, and 
chattering performers I ever saw. His voice, for a Ger- 
man, is really not so bad ; but who would go to hear 
German Operas when there is any thing else to be seen ? 

There was no Italian Opera during my stay at St. Peters- 
burgh. Some of the scattered and broken forces Irom the 
field of Moscow, where an Italian Opera had been for some 
time in existence, and was at last totally dismantled, arrived 
in the capital shortly before my departure, and were pre- 
paring to give representations at the beautiful Theatre of 
the Hermitage. I was present at one of the rehearsals, 


where I heard la Signora Bartolucci, or Bartolomei, I 
foi^ which, whom I ought only to have seen, for she 
is good looking, but sings wretchedly ; and Mademoiselle 
Zamboni just tolerable; and Signor Tosi, with a fine 
baas voice, rendered highly pleasing by considerable flex» 
ibility and softness, which enable him to introduce, though 
sparingly, and w\th much taste, a few ornaments into his 
performance. A regular Italian company, however, had 
been formed by superior orders in Italy, and was expected 
every day. They were said to be travelling under the 
escort of their recruiting seijeant. Count Wielhorsky, a dis^* 
tinguished^ftVe/^an^e, who had gone from St Petersburghfor 
that purpose, and to be near the capital ; but on my arrival, 
scmie weeks after at Warsaw, I found that tuttt le Signore 
of the company were lying prostrate under the pressure of 
indisposition, and, for the most part, with that organ af« 
fleeted by means of which they were to obtain their subsists 
ence. I felt happy in the opportunity of giving them a few 
wofds of advice, as we were in the same hotel, and their 
siittation appeared deserving of pity. I have since learned 
that they, at last, reached the Imperial residence, and began 
their operations with great iclaty — ^the Italian Opera having 
been in great force throughout the winter. 

In the time of the Empress Catherine, there was a 
company of English actors, under the management of a Mr. 
Fisher, or some such name, who supported themselves by 
the help of Imperial protection and Imperial roubles pretty 
well tor three or four years ; but at last, having quarrelled 
aiiKHig themselves, they were turned to the right about. 

There is a Spectacle Russe every Sunday and Thurs- 
dby. The French actors perform on a Wednesday and 
Saturday evening ; and the other three days are dedicated 
to German plays and operas. During the summer, dra-* 
matic representations take place at two new and exceedingly 


neat theatres, on the Islands of Eamennoi, and Yelaguiiie, 
the latter of which was built in the course of a few months 
in 18^ — 27, and where Russian light comedy and vau^ 
devilles are enacted. The performances at these thei&trcs 
take place, sometiines, at one or two o'clock in the after- 
noon. This was particularly the case on the birth-day of 
the reigning Empress in July of last year. 

St. Petersburgh can boast this year of having, in addi- 
tion to all the above-mentioned places of amusement, an 
Astley^s or Cirque d^Equitationy the building of which 
was just finished when I was about to leave that city, and 
did great credit to the taste of General Bazaine, a distin- 
guished engineer officer, who had beeii directed by the 
Emperor to superintend its construction. 

The French often ridicule the extraordinary size of the 
London newspapers, which they not unaptly style des drap$ 
de lit. What would they say of the size of a Russian 
bill of the play compared to their own? The Russian 
play-bills are as large as one side of the Times or Morn- 
ing Herald, and are printed on such coarse brown paper, 
that they look more like a rag. Perhaps they would call 
them mouchoirs de poche. These bills are in themselves 
curious emblems of the polyglotic character of the inha- 
bitants of St. Petersburgh ; for they ofier, in three wide 
columns, seldom less than six or eight fuU-length adver- 
tisements of plays, or other dramatic entertainments, in 
three and frequently four difierent languages, Russian, 
French, German, and Italian. As all the Imperial the- 
atres are under the same Government administration, one 
bill alone is made to serve for them all. 

This system of a general direction of the theatres, which 
was probably borrowed from the French, but which ex- 
ists more or less in every country in Europe, is the only 
means by which they can be kept going ; for without the 


interference of Government, and the pecuniary support it 
affords to them, not one of the theatres could stand as a 
private speculation. The inhabitants of St. Petersburgh 
sie not a play-going people ; and the actors would soon 
starve, if left to chance and their own resources. What 
would our economists say to an item in the budget, of 
200,000 roubles, and sometimes more, for the dramatic 
entertainment of the Christmas and Easter holiday folks ? 
And yet a sum as large as that has been assigned by the 
Emperor for that purpose, and a wise purpose it is too. The 
office for the general management of the Imperial theatres 
is regularly organized as a part of the Imperial Household, 
and performs its duties in earnest, as much as if it were 
employed in more weighty matters. It is called the Co- 
mite de la Direction Superieure des Theatres Imperiaux^ 
which consists of a principal member and three others^ be- 
sides secretaries, clerks, and medical gentlemen to attend 
the employes as well as the performers, in case of need. 
Prince Basili Dolgorouki was the principal member at the 
Jtime of my visit to St. Petersburgh, and Count Koutaisoff, 
Prince Andr6 Gagarine, and Count Wielhorsky, were the 
three others. The latter nobleman, who is said to be one 
of the finest virtuosi on the violoncello, and whom I met 
on one or two occasions in the evening, is passionately fond 
€^ music, which he understands thoroughly, and is the 
persoB already alluded to, who was despatched to Italy for 
the purpose of forming a company of singers, in which I have 
aince been told, he has been tolerably successful. ^^ Si nous 
n'avons pas le mieux absolu, nous avops du moins le mieux 
possible," observes a Russian critic, in the . St. Peters- 
btti]gh Journal of March last ; by which is probably meant 
that the trotfpe Italienne is not the worst in Europe, 
and that is all. In that respect, it may be some consor 
to the amateurs of St. Petersburgh, to know that 

VOL. II. 2 c 


London is not an iota more fortunate, with the exoepdoQ of 
those ** aventureuxy" as the sud critic calls the great guns 
of the Italian Opera all over Europe, *^ qui se hasardent dans 
le pays des guin^es ;^ but who are far from constituting a 
complete Opera establishment. A Mademoiselle Melas is 
spoken of as a very respectable prima donna, and Signer 
Nicolini as primo tenore. The former has not a siD^e 
contralto note in her voice, and yet sings Rosina in the 
Barbiire of Rossini ; in doing which she is obliged to have 
recourse to transposition, as Mademoiselle Sontag does; and 
a sad medley the result must be. Indeed the critic him- 
self^ though he praises the Signorina, is compelled to ad- 
mit that were it not for the orchestra, which adhered stricdy 
to their spartito^ it would have been impossible to have 
recognised that delightful cavatina, ** una voce poco fa'' 
from the lips of that lady. Signor Tosi as basso cantante, 
is decidedly a favourite with the public. I was convinced 
he would be, when I first heard him at a private concert, 
and told him so. He is worth two Zuchellis. 

There is a law regulating the copyright and privil^es 
of the authors and translators of plays, for which those 
ill-favoured votaries of the Muses stand indebted to the 
general direction of the theatres. They proposed the re- 
gulations to the Emperor, who was pleased to approve of 
them, and ordered them to be adopted. English managers 
and authors may periiaps feel curious to know in what the 
said regulations consist. The authors and translators ct 
dramatic works of every description, who furnish the Im- 
perial theatre with their productions, are divided into five 
classes. In the first are included the authors of regular 
tragedies or comedies in verse, of more than three acts, 
and the music of great operas. In the second, those of 
original tragedies and comedies in verse, and in three acts; 
comedies and dramas in prose, in four or five acts; tnm^ 


lations ID y^rse of tragedies and comedies, pf more than 
three acts; and the music of operas, of the second rank. 
In the third, those of original plays in verse, In two acts ; 
melodramas, translations of tragedies, comedies in two 
acts, and musical pieces. In the fourth, those of original 
plays, dramas in two acts, in prose, or translatioirs of 
them; and vaudevilles, of two acts. In the fifth, the 
translation of all the minor pieces. All those authors and 
translators, whose productions shall have been received at 
the Imperial Repertoire, are to enjoy, during their lifetime, 
a part of the receipts at the Imperial theatres of both 
capitals on evet'y night on which any of their plays shall be 
performed, iii the following proportions for the first foor 
classes — one-tetith for the fifst class ; one-fifteenth for the 
second class ; one-twentieth for the third class ; one-thir* 
tieth for the fourth class, — which quota to the authors is to 
be calculated on two-thirds only of the general receipt of 
the house, the other third b^ng deducted for expenses. If 
the perfortnance consists of more than one piece, the 
authcnr's quota is only to be calculated on the half of the 
total receipts. Such authors as possess this privilege, wilt 
also enjoy that of a perpetual free admission to all the Rus- 
sian theatres. The superior directors of the theatres are 
bound, in the case of authors of the first three classes, to 
give the representation of their productions at least six 
times in the course of the first year, and twice every suc- 
ceeding year, one half of which number of performances is 
to take place, during what is called the ** good season ;" and 
of coarse as much oftener as necessary, if the pieces happen 
to enjoy great popularity. Authors of the first class may dis- 
poee of their dramatic compositions to the directors general 
of theatres, if approved of, for any sum not higher than 4,000 
imibles. I am not acquainted with the manner in which a 
dramatic author of a successful piece is remunerated in this 

2 c S 



country. According to the above system of the Rusdan 
theatres, it is manifest that an encouragement is offered of 
that description which is the most grateful to a successful 
poet or a dramatic writer, and such as is the best calculated 
to produce, not des piices d'occasion^ in which the drama 
is nothing, and the favourite actor every thing; but such 
tragedies and comedies as are likely to stand the test of 
time ; since genuine taste and sterling merit will ever stand 
in the same relation to each other. Thus, supposing this 
mode of remuneration to have been applied to the late witty 
author of the School for Scandal, when he first produced 
that admirable comedy at Drury-lane, it is evident, that be- 
fore his death he would have received a much larger sum for 
it than he is known to have obtained, by at once selling the 
copy-right. It would, in fact, have been an annuity ci at 
least 300/. from two yearly representations of his comedy at 
that theatre alone ; but the successful autfaor^s claims ex- 
tend to all the other Imperial theatres, and therefore the 
annual profit or income to the author would be more consi- 
derable. If) as Mr. Bowring tells us, the Russians have 
really a spark of Estro poetico^ with such encouragement 
we ought soon to hear of some Shakspeares, or Voltaires, 
and Alfieris, or Sheridans, amongst them. 

St. Petersburgh has its musical clubs, and a SocUtt Phil- 
harmonique. I think the finest dilettante violin player in 
Europe is to be found in the last-mentioned society. I 
have not heard a more delightful amateur performer since 
the time when la Marchesa Pallavidni used to lead some 
of the largest orchestras of dilettanti in Italy on that most 
unsightly and anti-feminine musical instrument. The ef- 
fect produced' on those occasions was admirable ; and so it 
is in the case of Colonel Lvof, whose execution is of the 
most brilliant description, but whose appearance, in his 
decorated uniform, holding fiddle and bow, is scai^Iy lefi$ 


singular than that of la Marchesa used to be. I heard 
this officer, at one of the meetings of the members of the 
Philharmonic Society, perform some variations of his own 
composition on a national air, written in a minor key, in 
which it was not easy to determine whether his taste, coup 
JCarchety or exquisite facility was most conspicuous. The 
expression with which he drew the most melodious notes from 
his instrument was inconceivably fine. During my stay in 
St.Petersburgh, I was present at one or two private concerts 
only, which are by no means of rare occurrence. One of 
these afforded tne the highest treat that a foreigner in that 
capital can wish for, in respect to musical enjoyment. I 
allude to the opportunity of hearing that celebrated corps 
of vocal performers, to be found I believe no where but 
in that dty, called les Chantres de la Cour. The concert 
was given at the house of General BenkendorflP, to whom 
I have already alluded in more than one place in this 
narrative. The invitations were strictly limited to a very 
few persons, and it was by a special favour, I under* 
stood, never before granted, or at least seldom, to a 
private individual, that those vocal performers of the 
Imperial Chapel were permitted to attend on that oc- 
casion. These extraordinary singersj far otherwise in- 
teresting than can be expressed in writing, are only 
to be heard either fortuitously, at their own school; or 
lastly, at the Imperial Chapel, where, however, foreign- 
ers are not easily admitted. I therefore felt doubly the 
kindness of the General and his Lady, in affording me, 
through the good offices of the Countess Woronzow, on 
this and another occasion, the only two opportunities I 
could have of judging of the merits of those singular cho- 
risters. It was after our dinner at Count Potocki's. that 
the Countess Michel Woronzow, with some other persons 
of the party and myself, adjourned to hear les Chantres de 


la Coup, at the General^s house. I feel it impoaaiMe ac- 
curately to convey an idea of the various impressions and 
emcytions which this most skilful arrangement of select 
voices of all ages, and consequently of all tones, singing 
sacred music of rich, full, and expressive beauty, is capable 
of exciting in the bosom of the spectator. One feels, for a 
moment, transported with ecstasy at the sublime ^ect of 
such heavenly strains : the very heart-strings seem touched 
by them, and sensibility is awakened to a degree which 
operatic music cannot produce. The whole is a most 
masterly performance ; and the result may be quoted as 
the triumph of the human voice over every other instru* 
ment. From the most delightful soprano^ down to the 
gravest baritone^ every key note is here sung by a cho- 
rus of thirty, and at the Imperial Chapel, of one hundred 
and twenty performers, educated from the age of five yeais 
for this sole and sacred choral service. A fugue usually 
sung in the Russian churches at the Resurrection, accom- 
panied by full choruses, was performed among other pieces, 
and displayed such skill in the composition, as well as exe- 
cution, that I felt riveted to the spot. One of the finest 
tenor voices I ever heard, bore a conspicuous part in it ; 
and the loud swell of the bass, contrasting with the flex* 
ible and silvery voices of the children, all singing with a 
degree of precision that coiild scarcely be equalled by a 
mechanical instrument, formed such a ^* concord of sweet 
sounds,^' that no persons present could help being afiected. 
Towards the conclusion the whole chorus burst out into 
a ** Gloria in excehis^* another of Bortniansky^s splendid 
compositions, and the effect of it was beyond conception 
fine. Certainly, until I heard this unique performance, I 
was not aware of all the harmony of which the human voice 
is capable. In this opinion I was still more confirmed by 
a second opportunity afforded me through the kindness of 


Madame Benkendorff, of hearing one hundred and ten of these 
same performers on the following day at their own conserva* 
taire, or school ; where, as on the evening before, they sang 
without any instrument. The most renowned chorus-singers 
of church music in Europe, (and I brieve I have heard 
the best of them,) really sink into insignificance, compared 
to these minstrels. A pater noster was sung by them on 
this occasion, which struck me as by far the most affecting 
compositicm I had ever heard : there was a crescendo to- 
wards the end which was quite irresistible, and the effect 
of it on the audience was plainly visible on all that were in 
the room. I certainly had not the slightest notion of the 
existence of such a superior class of music as that which the 
Orthodox Greco-Russian seems to be, particularly that of 
the composer whom I just mentioned, and who has since 
paid the great debt of nature. When Madame Catalani 
beard the Chanires de la Cour, she was affected to tears, and 
confessed to those near her, ^^ Que jusqu'alors elle n^avait 
aucune id^e de Teffet que pent produire un choeur de voixj 
quoiqu'elle eut entendu les Chantres de la cel^bre ChapeUe 
du Pape." In cathedral music that celebrated songstress 
preferred the writings of Bortniansky to any other with which 
she was acquainted. On this occasion, I learned a few inte* 
resting particulars of the history of the Russian School of 
PiatPKhantfWhichy taking its origin from & few chorus-sing- 
ers sent by the Patriarch of Constantinople to the Grand- 
duke Vladimir, ended in adopting the studied and compli- 
cated melody and rhythm of Italian music, improved consi- 
derably after its introduction*, and to the degree which I 
hare ^escribed, by B^r^zovsky, but mor6 especially by 
Bortniansky himself. This eminent composer was one of 
the chantres de la cour in 1768, when the Empress Cathe- 
rine, having remarked his extraordinary talents, sent him 
to Italy to perfect himself in the science of music and 


the art of singing. It was under Galuppi, a celebrated 
maestro belonging to the Church of St. Mark, at Venice, 
where he was then living, that Bortniansky was placed to 
pursue his studies. His progress was really astonidung ; 
and on his return in 1779, he was appointed director of the 
music of the Imperial Chapel, which oiBce he continued 
to fill until the time of his death, which took place 
two years ago at the age of seventy-four years. His 
works are numerous, particularly in cathedral music, and 
most of them worthy of being placed in the same rank 
with those of Marcello, Pergolesi, and Handel. The music 
of Bortniansky is not, like the Greek music used to be 
in the earliest times of that church, a mere canto fermOi 
or plain chant ; but a happy combination of both it and 
modem music. Harmony, the beau ideal of music, is the 
principal point to which that composer seems to have 
directed the whole energy of his imagination ; and for a 
composer of sacred music, the study of harmony is the 
most important. The style of the Russian Church music 
does not always consist in fugues and florid compositions, 
so appropriately introduced when jubilation and the heart- 
joy of the blessed are to be expressed in their psalms ; but 
in simple counterpoint, also, of note against pote, producing 
in that solemn service, and with such voices, an effect of 
simplicity and syllabic coincidence which is quite admi- 
rable. I have heard the concealed voices chanting the Mi- 
serere in St. Peter''s during Passion-week, the harmony of 
which is productive of the most striking effect ; the heavenly 
strains of the sisters in the Church of the Mendicantiat 
Venice ; and the really angelic voices, which were formerly 
heard behind the handsome grilles of the nuns of Santa 
Clara at Naples, said to have produced, in some instances, 
real ecstasy among the devout auditory : but the happy 
combination of powerful, rich, mellowi and metallic voices 


of the Chantres de la Cour^ places this extraordinary corps 
of sacred performers above all the rest. They are parti- 
cularly affecting when executing some of Borttiiansky's 
scores in minor keys ; that rich field of harmony which 
affords so great a variety of modulations, admirably calcu- 
lated to express every shade of religious sentiment^and 
each successive state of our mind, when absorbed in deep 
and sacred meditation. 

But the Russians, or rather the Imperial Family, have 
another extraordinary and striking species of music which 
deserves to be mentioned in this place. They call it the 
hunting, or horn music ; but it might with more propriety 
be styled an organ on a new construction. A band of from 
twenty to. forty performers, equally skilled in blowing a 
short straight horn, are brought to execute what the keys 
of an organ are made to perform under the hands of an 
able master, namely the simplest as well as the most com- 
plicated pieces of music, in all keys, and by every measure 
of time required : each performer never sounding more 
than one and the same note as set down for him ; just as 
each key of an organ always produces the same note. As 
in that instrument, the most eloquent music is generally 
the result of such a disposition in its keys ; and thus also 
the horn music of St. Petersburgh, produces a most en- 
chanting effect. This band occasionally performs in pub- 
lic, particularly during the summer, at the parties de chasse 
of the court, and at the time of the public promenades 
which take place on the smaller islands at that season. 
This species of music, which is peculiar to Russia, was 
invented by a Bohemian named Maresch, a performer at 
the Court of the Empress Elizabeth ; and a treatise was 
published about thirty years ago by Henrichs of St. Peters- 
burgh, with specimens of the manner in which the notes 
are set down for each performer. 


To judge by tbe number of dances, of some kind or 
other, whicli the Russians, even those of St. Petersburgfa, 
possess, one would suppose them to be as fond of that diver* 
don as the French ; and such I may say is really the case. 
It would puzzle either Hart or Weippert to understand one 
half only of the real Russian dances that we saw or heard of 
{n that country. The Golubetz, the E^aravod, the Cossack 
dance, and the Semisk, are among those of which I have 
acquired some knowledge. The former is a sort of pan- 
tomimic allemande^ intended to represent a lover suing his 
mistress, and experiencing the reverses to which courtship 
is liable, but ending by being accepted, and crowning the 
scena by a splendid p€is de deux. It is singular that 
in such a climate as Rus«a, where rapid motion would 
be expected in the performers, in order to keep the body 
warm, the dances are generally solemn, at least in a great 
measure so, and the music equally grave, being written in 
ordinary time, and in flats ; while on the contrary, in the 
warmer latitude of Spain, the Bolero and the Fandango 
are marked by brisk and giddy movements. The Cossack 
dance difiers but little from a sailor^s hornpipe. It is in 
fact a caricature of that fatiguing dance, in which all sorts 
of contortions and gesticulations are gone through by two 
persons of different sexes, striking frpm time to time their 
heels on the ground, while a third person plays the move- 
ment on a pipe. 

Mr. Rose, in his Letters from the North of Italy, says 
that the kitchen aflTords a sufficient criterion by which to 
judge of nations, and mark th«r individual character : I 
think popular amusements are a still better means for that 
purpose. Not only has every nation its peculiar popular 
sports and amusements, but in many of them the dispo- 
sition of the people may readily be traced. Need we look 
farther than at home for illustrations of this fact ? So 


have the Riisaans their particular amusementa, which are 
different in different claases of society, but all quite cha- 
racteristic of the nation. What can be more strictly na- 
tional than the diversion of the ice-hills, the introduction 
of which has been attended with so little success in other 
parts of Europe ? The Neva, which till two weeks after 
our arrival at St. Petersburgh, bore men-of-war and mer- 
chant vessels on its rapid waters, was, at the time of my 
quitting the Capital, preparing for that really national 
sport, and many such, I was told, would be soon pursued 
on its frozen surface. An ice-hill is composed of a square 
tower made of stout timber, fifty feet high, resembling 
in every respect a portion of a scaffolding. Two inclined 
planes, made of planks, descend from its summit in op- 
posite directions. On one of these there are regular steps 
for ascending to the top of the tower, where a species of 
railed platform exists to hold the people engaged in the 
diversion. On the other, large square blocks of ice are 
so skilfully arranged as to form a sort of pavement, which 
is consolidated and made smooth by repeatedly pouring 
water over its surface from the top to the bottom. On the 
platform there are small low sledges, in which men and 
women dash headlong down the steep slippery surface, 
and are impelled, by the velocity acquired in the descent, 
to a great distance over a large field of ice, which is care- 
fully kept clear of snow for that purpose. This takes them 
to the foot of another hill which they ascend with their 
sledges on their backs, and there repeat their descent. 
** The mere enjoyment of the sight of such a multitude of 
frolicksome people,*^ observes Storch, ^' the interest excited 
by the whole spectacle, the dexterity of the young people, 
who in great numbers venture to descend the dangerous 
preeipice upright on scates, never fail to attract a vast 
concourse of spectators.^ On these days the Neva is co- 


vered-with caniageB, sledges, and pedestrians ; houses and 
booths are erected upon it, and the whole scene preKots 
the gaiety and hustle of a perpetual fair. The atnusenieiit 
of the inontagnets, or an epitome of it, is lo be found 
even in very large mansions, and within doors, particularly 
in the country. Thus at the Imperial Palace of Gatchina, 
I observed in one part of a very spacious withdrawing- 
rooin, in which they informed us that the £mpresft-moth« 
asseinbles after dinner with her ladies of honour, a Afo»< 
tagne Ruise of polished wood, down which the ladies slide 
either sitting or standing upon a piece of carpet. I wonder 
that this addition to the calisthenic system for the ladies of 
this country, has not yet been thought of. 

In looking at Uie group represented in the annexed 
wood-cut, my readers will form an idea of what presented 

itself to me as I was walking one day in one part of the 
outskirts of the town. The amplicity of this popular oc 


cupation, which seemed to require great strength^ led me 
to stop and inquire into its nature. I learned that the 
divertrion is called the Swaika, and that it consists in pitch- 
ing an iron bolt, the head of which weighs sometimes a 
great many pounds, within the circle of an iron ring, pre- 
viously fixed flat on the ground. This species of gymnast 
tics requires great address as well as strength, and a 
quick and correct eye. Like the Montagnes Ru^ses, it is 
deserving of importation into our gymnastic academies. 
The bolt is whirled round in the air, being held by the 
point for that purpose ; and when its strikes the earth, such 
is the force with which it penetrates the ring, that it re- 
quires the united power of two men to uproot it once 
more. When the player misses the centre of the ring, he 
passes the bolt to the next player, and pays a forfeit. 

Just by this scene, I noticed a dangerous modification of 
what, in England, is called the swinging-board, and which 
consists in balancing a long board across a round and 
stout cylinder of wood or a tree, when two persons, gene- 
rally yoiing women, (those I saw were children,) place 
themselves one at each end, and by certain movements 
raise each other alternately, but so quickly, and so effec- 
tually, that either party is by turns thrown upwards some 
feet from the board, and comes down upon part of it with 
so much increased impetus and weight, that the elevation 
of each person is thereby considerably augmented with a 
corresponding increase of risk of mutually breaking their 

Russians will box, or rather spar, for they do it with 
roukavitzies on, or long gloves, and never draw blood ; 
boExing, or Kulatschnoi Boy is often performed by several 
persons together, who take opposite sides, when it really 
becomes a very curious exhibition. The slight sketch of 
this national diversion of the lower classes, which I have 


here introduced, will convey a tolerable idea of what - I 
mean by " Russian boxing." The Russian seldom, if ever, 

Kulatcbnoi Boy, (Fist-fight.) 

draws blood, when he comes to blows ; and there is no na> 
tion in Europe so little inclined to proceed to that ex- 
tremity, as they are. 

It happens frequently that the three popular amuse- 
ments last described, are to be seen at one and the same 
time on some holyday, in an open space crowded like the 
scene already described on the Neva, with spectators, who 
are generally of the very middling classes, although to look 
at the dress of some of the women, one would suppose (hem 
to be far superior in rank. In no other country, except 
perhaps in Turkey, have I noticed such a display of 
rich brocades, embnxderies, lace, and pearls, as I have now 
and then remarked on the persons of H»ne of the wives of 
wealthy people, free peasants, and monied men, all Rus. 
dans. Their head-dress is frequently of immense value, 


and picturesque in the extreme, when not covered by the 
plalded veil) not unlike a Spanish mantilla. The latter 
they wear when they go out, and this as well as the great care 
which they take to conceal the hair under their caps, is consi- 
dered as a token of the married state. The husband, on the 
contrary, is all nmplicity. His kaftan of fine blue or green 
cloth, gathered in numerous plaids around the waist, is the 
principal part of his dress, which descends as low down as 
the calf of his leg, covering the half of his boots. A plain 
hat with a low crown, the upper part of which is con- 
siderably larger than where it joins the broad brim, which 
is slightly turned up to the right and left, forms the 
more usual covering for the head. Such a hat has idways 
a broad band of black velvet with a steel buckle. Some 
prefer a furred cap in the winter, in which case the 
most expensive furs are employed. Very few of this class 
of people wear the sash or koushak round the waist, and a 
great many have at last given up that national appendage^ 
the only one which Peter dared not touch— the beard. 
It may be advanced as a general fact, that the native Rus> 
dan merchants, resident in St. Petersburgh, are fast aban- 
doning the peculiar national costume by which they have 
hitherto been distinguished, changing it for the tight coat 
and inexpressibles of other European nations, in which 
they neither study their convenience nor display their good 
taste ; for what can be uglier than the modern European 

The Russians of St. Petersburgh have nocock-pit among 
their sports, but they have a goo8e-pit» a fact which, I 
believe, has been overlooked by former travellers. Fight- 
ing birds of that noisy yet apparently harmless tribe are 
trained for sport, and the practice prevails to a great ex- 
tent among the hemp merchants. They are taught to 
peck at each other^s shoulders, so as to draw blood. The 

400 ri^LD SPORTS. 

ganders have been known to have sold as high as five hun- 
dred roubles, and betting upon them runs very high. This 
sort of sport takes place in March. 

But all the field sports are not equally tame and harm- 
less ; nor does the young Russian nobleman, the man of 
fashion or of fortune, content himself with showing his skill 
in riding, and the soundness of his wind, or that of his hack, 
in coursing a miserably frightened hare or a sly fox ; but 
faces the danger of bear and wolf hunting. With regard to 
the latter, I was informed by Baron Mayendorff, who bad 
often gone out with parties on that errand at night, that one 
of the modes employed consists in two persons driving in 
a sledge through those woods, which are known to be infest- 
ed with ferocious animals of that class, well armed with short 
weapons, as well as ready loaded guns. The wolf is a very 
gourmand in pork flesh ; the younger the better. The hunts- 
men, therefore, take care to have in the sledge with them a 
sucking pig, the ears of which they pull from time to time, 
when the squeaks of the tortured animal not unusually call 
forth the wished-for wild beast, which, blinded by that 
strongest of all instincts, hunger, falls ravenously on what 
it considers to be the noisy prey, but which is nothing 
more than a large bundle of straw dragging along the 
ground from behind the sledge, somewhat fashioned like a 
pig. While in this act the musketry of the sledgers is dis- 
charged at him, and there is generally an end of the wolf. 
But it sometimes happens that when a she-wolf has been 
thus disturbed and cheated, and that the hunters have 
missed their aim, the ferocious animal has made a dart at 
the inmates of the sledge, or followed for some time the 
rapid course of the carriage, howling most dismally, thus 
reversing the order of the chase until a more lucky shot 
has put an end to the pursuit. Now I have no relish for 
such sports ; neither should I be inclined to join a party of 


bear-himtsmeti. Indeed I was fairly put to the test on this 
head, when- 1 bravely declined joining a number of gentle- 
men, among whom were Count Matusseviteh, Mr. Dis- 
browe, and his brother-in-law, who, immediately after din- 
ner one day at Baron NicolaTs, proposed to me to start 
with them that night in search of bruin in one of the 
neigfabouring forests. Mine was not the courage of the 
Thane of Cawdor : 

*^ Approach thou like the rugged Russian bear:'' 

but a much more peaceable feeling of the heart, which led 
me to say ^^ No, I thank you \^ 

Bears, it appears, never lie down before the first snow 
haa fallen. They then prepare a soft bed for themselves 
of moss, straw, and brush-wood, generally under a large 
tree, on which they repose, and never move again until the 
spring. They eat nothing during the whole of that time, 
which they spend in a quiescent and almost dormant state : 
they have, however, been observed to lick the upper part 
<^ their pawd, which is always found destitute of hair, if 
they are shot or taken immediately after the winter. These 
animals are no little annoyance in many parts of Russia, 
daring their active state of existence, and have, from 
time to time,, infested the neighbourhood of large towns. 
Even the vicinity of St. Petersburgh is not always free 
from them : which circumstance has made bear-hunting a 
fadiionable divernon among the higher classes during the 
early part of the winter. A party, consisting of several 
gentlemen, agree to go bear-shooting, and find a maH 
who can give them the necessary information respecting 
the track of one of these animals, which is generally per- 
ceived on the first fallen snow. The whole ground on 
which Bueh a track appears is surrounded, so that the bear 
may not escape when roused and wounded. The party 

VOL II. 2 D 


Start from St. Petersburgh at about eight iv nme o'clock 
in the evening, the thermometer being, probably, at the 
time as low as five or six, and perhaps more dq;rees below 
the freeaing point, and travel about fifteen, twenty, or 
thirty versts, so as to arrive early in the field the follow- 
ing morning. The track guides them to the spot, and the 
animal is generally found lying quiet and passive. Both 
men, and dogs are then employed to rouse it; the hunteis 
at the same time watching its motions. The bear at last 
starts up at this intrusive and irritating treatment, and 
looking round with eyes of fire, selects one from among fail 
enemies, and darts towards him as fast as its ponderous 
body will permit. At this juncture, the intrepid sports- 
man waiting for its near approach, fires at it, and quickly 
re-loads his gun. If it still advances, or the gun has either 
missed fire, or done but little execution, a second sad 
a third sportsman are ready with their weapons to protect 
their friend, and with a surer aim bring the animal to the 
ground. It is seldom indeed that the bear breaks away 
altogether from the hunters ; on the contrary, it will ad- 
vance boldly towards them, and receive the fire with a deep 
groan. It is then sent as a present for tlie sake of the 
skin, and the paws ; the latter havmg the reputation of 
being delicious morsels for the table ; equal, as I heard 
a noble epicurean observe, to the best palaU de btarf- 
The sportsmen are dressed for the occasion in a hunting- 
jacket, lined with fur, and wear water-proof boots, with 
another inside pair of flannel boots, which, while they 
allow of a full free motion of the feet, also keep them dry 
and warm. 

Bear-hunting takes place about half-a-dozen times in the 
season; and although general prohibitory game laws were 
introduced in Russia last year, this sport has been left un- 
fettered ; Ihe bear being justly considered a very pemici- 


OU8 animal, and one which CHight to be exterminated. These 
animals are 8o numerous in some parts of Russia, and the 
fiictlity with which they are destroyed by some of the 
country people is so great, that a patient of mine. Count 
de B — , learning that I originally intended to go to Mo8<* 
cow, in doing which I should have had to pass through 
the immediate neighbourhood of one of his estates, was 
anxious to procure me the luxury of having a bear-skin 
for the feet in my carriage, and gave me to that effect 
a letter for his steward, thus laconically worded : ^^ The 
bearer will wait at the post- station for an hour: kill 
a bear, and take to him the skin and the paws/' Apra- 
pos of game-laws ; while a great deal has been said on 
diat subject in this country, and a great deal done to get 
rid of them, — in Rusaa fresh measures have been taken, 
within the last eighteen months, to control the chase 
by the proclamation of an ukase of the Emperor, which 
puts in force two old decrees of 1740 and 1763, and which 
places this question precisely on the same footing as it 
is in England, except as to the penalty attached to per-, 
mos guilty of contravention to the game-laws. Instead oif 
fees, or imprisonment, or transportation, the Imperial law 
against poachers, with a humane spirit consistent with the 
principles of the existing form of government, condemns 
such persons to furnish a military recruit to the State; 
and if in indigent circumstances, to serve themselves as 
privates in the army. None can shoot or hunt within a 
cirde of thirty versts around St. Petersburgh and the 
Imperial country residences, without a r^ular license from 
the Grand Veneur^ which is charged with a fee of forty 
roubles for a single gun and a dog. 

I ought to have said something about the horse-races 
which have regularly taken place for some years past near St. 
Petersburgh, and which are very much patronised, on the 

£ D 2 


sound principle of encouraging the good breed of horses; 
but I am not in possession of sufficient facts on the sub- 
ject. Some of my readers may yet, probably, recollect an 
account given of a race which took place near that capital, 
' between some English and Cossack horses, to the advan* 
tage of the former. That single event has given a spur 
to similar exhibitions in other parts of Russia, as well 
as in or near the two capitals. Count Matiissevitch, io 
St. Petersburgh, and Count Woronzow, in his extenfflve 
government, are known warmly to promote^ by the foun- 
dation of stakes and cups, a system of horse-racing si- 
milar to that which prevails in England. These mea- 
sures will do a great deal of good in a country where the 
inhabitants are very much attached to horses, of which 
they have some excellent breeds, and who may be said 
to be tolerably well versed in the art of managing them. 
Nothing, I thought, could equal the beauty of some 
of the black and bay horses of one or two of the regi- 
ments of the Guards, over whose stables I went one day, 
lifter visiting their barracks. Comfortable as the latter 
appeared to be, the state of the stables was even more 
saigfU and pleasing to contemplate. Some of the Colonels 
of Regiments of Horse Guards have organized their stables 
in such a manner, that, in winter particularly, they form an 
agreeable lounge. 

Though I saw but litde of the pleasures-boats on the Neva, 
before the freezing of that noble stream, yet I have re- 
ceived such full accounts of them from some of the English 
as well as Russian residents in St Petersburgh, that I regret 
I did not see more of them. The resemblance of St. Peters^ 
burgh to Venice, is to be found not only in several points 
which have been already mentioned, but also in the appear- 
ance and number of the pleasure-boats, which glide gaily 
along the blue bosom of the majestic waters of the Neva, 


during the summer season. Like their brethren of the Adri- 
atic queen^ the Russian gondoliers deck their boats and their 
persons in rich and fantastic colours; invite, by their cheer- 
ful countenances and expressions of carino^ the passengers 
to get into their skiffs, and lull them into soft reflections, 
and perhaps to sleep, by their national songs. It is one 
of their indispensable qualifications, besides those of being 
stout, good-looking, and expert rowers, that they shall be 
masters of all the popular songs and tunes of the day. 
Occasionally there is an accompaniment to the voice with 
the rojok, or reed-pipe, a tambourine, and two wooden 
spoons, with bells at each end, which are struck together. 
The effect of this concert is said to be exceedingly pleasing 
when heard from the shore, or from a distant boat, during 
the twilight of a summer evenings as the sound is wafted 
over the sparkling waters by the refreshing breeze from the 
islands. These boats have from two to six pair of oars, 
besides the steersman ; and the charge, I was informed, 
is moderate. They are much resorted to by all classes of 
people ; but the great have, as at Venice, their own gon- 
dolas, which are distinguished by the rich liveries of the 




The Markets. — The Siennaia^ or Hay-market. — Frozen Fish and 
Frocen Flesh. — Hay Sledges. — The Round Market, or Krougloi 
Rynok. — Fish peculiar to Russia. —Black and Red Caviar.— 
The Floating Fish-markets. — Sununer and Winter Fishing, near 
St. Petersburgh. — Ice-Breakers. — Phenomenon on bresluQg 
the Ice. — Market for Frozen Provisions. — Price of Proviaiow 
during the Winter Season. ^ Milk and Milkmaids. — The Mus* 
Kol Rynok.— Ukraine Oxen. — Slaughtering. — TheToLKOUTCROi 
Rynok^ or General Market. — Voltaire in a Russian Market. — 
The Fruit and Bird Market. — Live Birds. — Profusion and 
cheapness of Poultry. — Sbitene and Sbitenistchick. — Kvass and 
other National Beverages. — Pivo. — Spirituoos Liquors.— Ka- 
backs and Gin Shops. — Drunkenness in St. Petersburgh and 
Drunkenness in London. — Wines. — Water of the Neva. — The 
Chelsea Dolphin. — Russian Tea-Drinking. — Shops of St. Peten- 

burgh. —The Gostivno! Dvor The Drug Shops. — Rnanan 

Materia Medica. —The English Magazine.— Clothing. — Finandal 
Regulation. — Le TaUkur par e»ceUence, and Iw meUleuret M(h 
distes. -^ The Fur Shops.— The Linen Trade. — Expenses of 
Living at St. Petersburgh. — Rasnostchick. -* Winter and Sum- 
mer Carriers. — Appendix. 

I HOLD it to be a duty which ought not to be overlooked 
by those who undertake to describe the capital of a lai^ 
Empire and its inhabitants, that whilst telling us of their 
institutions, churches, palaces, trades, and places of educa- 
tion, they should not forget also to inform us how the popu- 
lation is provided with the means of sjubsistence. A romance 


writer never thinks of giving a dinner, or any other repast 
to his hero; and most of the poets, notwithstanding the 
better example which Homer has set them, too frequently 
regard the homely occupation of eating and drinking, as 
beneath their notice : but we travellers must proceed upon 
other principles. Our heroes must be fed ; and we must 
say whence the necessaries of life are to be obtained. In 
St. Petersburgh there is no difficulty in procuring them, 
and what is more, they are very cheap. The markets in 
the '^ Imperial residence'' are very numerous. Not only 
is there a neat and commodious market (Tchastnoi Ry- 
nok) to each principal section (kvartald) of every district ; 
but there are, moreover, other well-noted markets for the 
sale of specific articles, which cannot fail to present a very 
interesting sight to a stranger. In matters connected with 
the comforts, accommodations, and provisions for the mid- 
dle and lower classes of the people, I am, and ever have been, 
a very Paul Pry ; and on the occasion of my vidt to St 
Petersburgh, I evinced my inquisitive disposition to its 
utmost extent, as the younger son of good Mr. Anderson, 
the merchant, can fully testify, having been sadly tormented 
by my questions and inquiries, as well as by my desire to 
be conducted to all the markets in that city. However, 
he did it all most good-naturedly, and I hope without 
very serious inconvenience. To him I am indebted for 
having been able to rummage every shop, and every 
stall, putting questions to every one who had any 
thing to do with them, and writing down the informa- 
tion I obtained through my young friend^s interpreta- 
tion. It is curious that some of the most noted markets 
to which I allude are more, or at all events as much, 
frequented on a Sunday, as on any other day. This is the 
case, in particular with the Siennaia or Hay-market, to 
which I repaired on one of those days, and where the same 
bustle was found to prevail, which exists at Covent-Garden 


Oil a Saturday morning. But the similarity between the 
two markets goes no farther. The St Petersburgh Sien- 
na'ia is an oblong square of great dimensions, or about 
three times the size of Leicester-square, and has not a shel- 
ter or a single shade in the centre. The buildings aromid 
it are handsome private houses, with one or two public 
edifices, and perhaps as many churches. I know not whe- 
ther I ought to invoke a Teniers, a Wilkie, or a Schneider, 
to assist me in describing the curious sight which this place 
presented; but certainly there were subjects for each of the 
artists upon which to exercise his talents. Both live boors 
and dead game of every sort, are to be found here, the first 
for Teniers and Wilkie*s pencil, and the second for Schnei- 
der's. The sum, however, of all I have to say on the sub- 
ject is this : snow was on the ground, and pretty deep too ; 
and so it was, I imagine, all over Russia at the time, a cir- 
cumstance which had materially tended to enliven the scene 
before me ; for sledges had come to the n^arket brimful, 
and in some instances piled up mountains high, with frozen 
flesh and frozen fish from every lake and every river in 
Russia, and even from Archangel. These were arrang- 
ed in several rows the whole length of the market, leav- 
ing wide alleys between them, through which we walked at 
our leisure, inquiring, not only as to the price, but as to the 
locality and quality of the fish, having some smattering 
of the natural history of a (ew of them. My readers will 
be apt to think that I carried my science to a wrong mar- 
ket ; but I can assure them, that not only did I get a great 
deal of information on the subject from apparently uncouth 
boors, but also that the manner in which I obtained it was 
in every respect gratifying. For, instead of sulky answers 
and uncivil proceedings, I met with good-natured readi- 
ness, and, in many instances, with an earnestness of dis- 
position to afibrd me every information respecting the 
precise locality of the fish, names and quantity, mode 


and season of fishing, manner of preserving, expense of con- 
veyance, and general profit derived from the sale, together 
with «very other particular I required, which was the more 
remarkable, as they must have perceived that I was but a 
very sorry customer to them. I never saw better disposed 
peo|de in that class of life any where. They did, indeed » 
once or twice indulge a sly titter at my shrivelled figure 
and blue stifi^ fingers trying to hold the pencil and note-book 
(temperature eighteen degreed below freezing!) in com- 
mitting to paper the answers they gave me ; but that was 
a fair subject of merriment for them, and they availed them- 
selves of it with civility. I do not pretend to say what re- 
ception a foreigner would meet with at Billinsgate or Covent- 
Garden, if he were to go thither with an interpreter poking 
bis fingers into every basket, holding up each article for con- 
templation, asking its price, its origin and peculiarities, and 
having made a low bow, with a *^ thank ye," proceed to 
the next stall to repeat the farce : if John Bull suffered him 
to leave the market sound of limb, or without some pelting, 
it would be somewhat *^ against the course of nature." 
Svery species of fish I saw here was at the very lowest 
price: pike, trout, and soudag in abundance, of the 
largest size, at Sd. the Russian pound (14f oz. of the Eng- 
lish weight) ; and when of smaller size 1 jd. ; a salmon from 
Archangel, weighing five pounds, for 8d. There was at 
that season of the year, in this great market, a sea-fish 
brought also from Archangel, much esteemed by the gotir- 
mandsy and at the bare mention of whose name I heard 
them smack their lips. This is the Navaga : I have tasted 
it, but cannot share in the enthusiasm of the Russian connois- 
seurs ; but on the subject of sea-fish they are certainly not 
good authorities, except when they have travelled. Only 
fancy that they never taste cod, sole, haddock, and whiting 
unless they go abroad for them ! Some think that the 
flavour of two of those sea-fishes, the cod and the haddock. 


18 perceptible in the 80udag, a most excellent river-fish, 
about the size of a salmon-trout which is found in the 
Neva, the Ladoga and other waters. It is served up boiled, 
and eaten with a sauce, in which mustard and pepper form 
the principal ingredients. I should consider it indigestible 
without them. These and other fish are seen doaeiy 
packed in snow and hardened by frost, covered with a great 
deal of matting. The sledges are about three feet high, 
and five feet long. The Finnish sledges are differently con- 
structed, consisting of a well-made square trough placed on 
a sledge bottom, whereas the more common market-sledges 
are made up of twelve or sixteen strong pieces of timber, 
in the shape of a coop without a top, filled up within the 
insterstices with smaller pieces of wood, and lined inside 
with matting. In the same market large quantities of 
onions, potatoes, carrots, and young cabbages^ throughout 
the winter may be obtained. By way of completing the 
picture, we have here also sledges full of every species of 
meat, which is sold at a very low rate. On the left of the 
Sienndia^ are arranged the hay sledges, which may perhaps 
carry one-fourth of an English load. At any other time 
of the year, hay is brought down the Neva to St. Peters- 
burgh on rafts, and piled up in cubes of the most gigantic 
size, containing perhaps a quantity equal to as many as 
fifteen and twenty common English hay-stacks. These 
are moored not far from the third or highest bridge, and 
then sold in retail. Hay is then rather dear ; probably as 
much as one-third of what it costs in London ; but when 
winter allows of rapid conveyance by sledging, and enables 
every peasant to bring his load to market, the prices fall 
considerably. The keeping of horses, therefore, is cheaper 
in winter than in summer. 

Not far from this large market, is the round market, 
(Eougloi Rynok) consisting of a circular building, the 
outside of which is surrounded by piazzas, with a great 


number of shops under them for the sale of game and fish, 
the former fresh or frozen, and the latter fresh, salted, or 
frozen. Here we have a somewhat superior dass of people 
to deal with ; but still civil. These fish-mongers pay a 
tax of S50 roubles to the Doumd, or civic authorities, for 
their patent or license, to open a shop, which license they 
are obliged to keep framed and glazed, suspended in a 
very conspicuous place. The variety of dry fish I be- 
held here, almost exceeds belief. Under the same r(|of, 
I saw the fish peculiar to Archangel and Lake Ilmen, 
with those from the neighbourhood of Novgorod » the 
Rivers Volchow, the Volga, and from Astracan. The 
prices are so low, that the poorer classes may, and do, 
frequently indulge in this delicious food. It does not 
appear that frost impairs in any very considerable de- 
gree the flavour of either fish or game. One of the 
English residents at Cronstadt, who has a deep and 
excellent ice-house, is in the habit of daily frequentipg the 
frozen markets at the beginning of winter, and orders 
as much fish, game, and poultry as his ice-house will hold, 
which, when filled with those useful articles, is closely shut 
up ; and the frozen provisions are used from the beginning 
of spring, until the following winter; by which means, 
he has those luxuries at all times, and most economically. I 
saw in this market a very small fish, something like the 
white bait, though not silvery and nearly transparent, 
called Snedky. It is mixed up with soups, the broth 
being really excellent and nutritious, as I afterwards ascer. 
tained. This is sold at three half-pence a pound. One of 
the dainties at this season iri" the fish line, is the belly 
part of the sturgeon, which some have compared to the 
palate of beef in taste. It is of an orange colour, 
and is cut into long and broad slices, not unlike tripe in 
appearance (Ossetrina). I observed an .entire sturgeon, 
nearly five feet in length, and two in circumference: it 


came from Astracan, and was sold at three' halfpence a 
pound. The Ukleia (Cyprinus Alburaus), another species 
of fish, found in abundance, and not unfrequently served up 
at the tables of people of consequence, miich resembles in 
size and taste, and perhaps is the whiting. But the fish, par 
excellence^ the triumph of the St. Petersburgh amph jtrions, 
and which is de rigueur at all great dinners, as a turbot is 
at a dinner prie in London, when that delicious aquatic is 
nqt yet common, is the Sterliad^ (Accipenser Ruthenus,) im- 
properly called Sterlet J which is brought all the way from 
the Volga. It must be conveyed and kept alive till within a 
short time before dinner, or it is not worth a copper kopeck 
afterwards ; for it becomes tough and leathery, and acquires 
a mawkish taste. The Sterliad is found high up the river, 
and is, so far, difierent from salmon-trout, which is best 
when caught nearest to the mouth of rivers. I will not trust 
myself in repeating the several exorbitant prices which I 
have heard quoted as having been given for some of the 
larger sorts of this fish ; it is, however, a fact, that for no 
other fish, in any part of the globe, have such sums been 
given as for the stierlet. Some are several feet in length. 

Shakspeare was not far wrong when he Bs^id of some- 
thing too good for the vulgar, that it was '* caviare to the 
general." There are few things more delicious than caviare, 
both the black, which is prepared from the sturgeon ster- 
liad, &c., and the red, or rather yellow sort, from another 
fish called Riapoushka^ (Salmo Maraenula,) each of which 
we saw in great quantities at the Krouglo'i Rynok ; and yet 
how little is it valued by people who ought to know better ! 
On my asking one of the fishmongers whether they did not 
sometimes sell the salted caviare, repeatedly washed, for 
fresh, he admitted that some dishonest tradesmen might do 
it, but that it was an easy matter to detect the trick by 
placing some of it on a white sheet of paper, when, if the 
caviare was old, a stain of oil would remain upon it. 


Among the curiosities of St. Fetersburgh, in regard to 
fish, are the floating fish-markets seen during the summer. 
Until the freezing of the Neva, fish is, I believe, sold in no 
other places. We arrived time enough in St. Fetersburgh 
to see this peculiar feature of the capital in full operation. 
A number of decked galliots, divided into two large tanks, 
one of which is filled with salt water for the sea-fish, and 
the other with fresh water for the fish caught in rivers and 
lakes, bring daily into the interior of the city a very large 
supply of live fish of every sort» and are moored alongside 
a Uu^ covered hulk, tastefully arranged and painted in gay 
colours, on board of which the buyer steps from the quay, 
to select his own favourite fish as it swims in the capacious 
tanks. Net bags, fastened at the end of a long pole, are 
dipped into any particular part of the tank, at the desire of 
the buyer, who has thus an opportunity of having brought 
out of the dear water, for examination, any sort of fish which 
may have struck his attention. The operation is repeated 
as often as necessary, until the choice is made, when the live 
fish is paid for and carried home. One of these floating 
fish-markets is to be found at the foot of the Isaac bridge, 
and on several of the canals in the interior of the city. 

There are other modes of procuring fresh fish from the 
Neva in St. Fetersburgh, both in summer and winter, to 
which many of the gourmands prefer having recourse. 
Extensive fisheries are to be met with along the two banks 
of the river, at short distances, conducted by the seignorial 
or leasehold proprietors of the banks. Hither the amateurs 
frequently flock for amusement, and take their chance of 
the haul of the nets, settling beforehand to pay for the 
contents a certaia price, which varies according to the 
season of diffierent kinds of fish. In winter, fishing with 
the hoop>>net is tolerably productive. These nets are sunk 
through large holes cut in the ice, and hauled up three or 
four times a-day. There are proper ice-breakers who per- 


form that operation, not only for the fiaheimen, but for 
the washerwomen also, who require in winter a round aper- 
ture in the ice. A curious phenomenon may be noticed on 
removing the piece of ice thus cut round; a column of 
thidk vapour rises immediately from the aperture, and con- 
tinues to do so for some time. When a great number of 
fishing parties are scattered over the froasen surface of the 
river, busy in their favourite occupation, or in planting 
branches of fir-trees in the ice near the ofpenings, to in- 
dicate their position bofli to pedestrians and the drivers of 
carriages, throwing at the same time snow and ice round 
its margin to prevent accidents, the scene presented to the 
stranger is really picturesque and animated. The markets 
are supplied with live fish by the Fins (i propos of fidi,) 
who often bring great quantities from the lakes and rivars 
in Finland. The tall casks in which the fish ace brought 
by these people, have a large square aperture, which ayows 
of the upper stratum of ice being broken and thrown out 
in proportion as it forms, supplying, at the same time, 
the fish with fresh water, in order to preserve them alive. 
They are sold at a cheap rate. ' 

The two markets I have just described, are not the 
only places where frozen provisions are sold in winter. 
There is besides a very large open space on the left of 
the Nevskoi Prospekt, not far from the Monastery of St. 
Alexander, in which such provisions of all sorts are sold 
during the winter in astomshing quantities, so that the 
lower classes may be said to have a perpetual cocagna of it 
at that season of the year, although they have a long and 
very strict Lent to fast in. 

The price of provisions during the winter season is so low, 
that I wonder • how people can think it worth their while 
to come any great distance with them to market. Veal 
from Archangel, which is the best, is also the dearest 


artide, being sold at 7d. or 8d. a pound. But beef, mutton, 
and pork^ which latter is much eaten, are respectively sold 
tteA for Ifi, 25, and S8 kopeeks the pound, or l^cf. 2|{2. 
ftt4, English money. Mutton is very cheap, but it is 
very inferior at St. Petersburgh. It has no flavour, 
and it is always tough and coarse. I saw the best white 
wheaten bread purchased for 28 kopeeks a pound. I 
Myiflf bought, one day, from a female Rasnostchick, or 
hawker of provisions, a very numerous class in St. Peters- 
burgh, a loaf of the best fancy-bread, of a most choice 
flavour and whiteness, in size about that of a threepenny 
loaf, for eight kopeeks, four-fifths of a penny. Rye bread, 
however, is more universally eaten, even in families of rank : 
it is sud to be well tasted, and to yield more nourishment. 
I can agree to the latter, but have never been able to be- 
lieve the former part of the assertion. At all the tables I 
fiequented, I saw laid before the guests, besides the beau- 
tiful wheaten bread, a slice of rye bread, delightfully black, 
pasty, and sour, which was eaten with as much relish as I 
felt in disposing of my white one. The poorer classes use 
a blacker sort of bread, prepared of rye-meal unbolted. The 
very whitest wheaten flours cost, at the dose of November, 
thirty* two roubles, or between twenty-six and twenty- seven 
shillings a sack, containing 200 Russian, or 180 Eng- 
lish pounds : in other words, flour is sold at Hd. a pound. 
Every thing else is reasonable in proportion. A pair of 
very large fowls costs three paper roubles, or 25. 6d. and 
when frozen &. only. I bargained for a goose weigh- 
ing eight pounds, and a turkey somewhat larger; the 
first for one rouble or 10|(2. and the latter three roubles and 
a half. Game in proportion is even cheaper. I one Sunday 
visited the poultry and game-market, on purpose to ascertain 
the fact; and was surprised, in the first place, at the quan- 
tity of both to be found there; and in the second place, at the 


trifling charge made for the game in particular. A brace 
of partridges was purchased for eight-pence ; and it should 
be recollected that there is a species of those birds in Bus- 
na which is considerably Urger than in other parts of Eu- 
rope. They are distinct from the common species, whidi 
ig rather smaller in Rusua than in England ; neither an 
they the red-le^ed partridges, but a totally distinct bird, 
and very excellent. Moor game is of considerable sue in 
St. Petcrsburgh ; generally as large as a moderate ased 
turkey. A pair of black cocks the size of a turkey, was 
sold for fifteen pence. 

Milk is perhaps one of the dearest articles of life in St 
Petersburgh. The milk-women carry that commodity to 
town in earthen jars, covered with mats made of the birch 
bark. They are distinguished by the peculiarity of their 
costume, which consists of a short tunic of some gaudy 
colour, without any covering over the shirt- sleeves, which 
are always full, and of a dazzling white, elegantly fastened 
at the wrist with clasps. 


They look very well in this dress, and the maniter in which 
they carry their light burthens, suspended from the ends of 
a bow resting upon one shoulder, gives them a very graceful 
appearance. The majority of these milk-women come from 
the village of Okhta, situated in the upper part of the great 
reach of the Neva on the Vibourg bank. There are, also 
engaged in the same traffic, the descendants of a colony of 
Swiss or Dutch people, I forget which, who were originally 
invited over for the purpose of supplying the inhabitants of 
St. Petersburgh with milk and fresh butter; but these live 
farther from the city. Both the milk and cream which I 
tasted appeared to be of excellent quality, and le^s liable 
than those of our own capital to Mr. Accum's celebrated 
reflections on ^' Death in the Pot."*^ A quart bottle of 
the former sells for 30 kopeeks, (8d.) and one pint and 
a half of the latter for lOJd. With regard to fresh 
butter there is nothing to complain of, generally speaking ; 
but most of the respectable families prefer getting the 
necessary quantity of cream, and have what butter they 
require for their lighter repasts made at home by means 
of a vyry speedy process, facilitated, of course, by the 
ordinary temperature of the atmosphere and the free use 
of ice. That which is sold costs about one rouble, or a 
little more than tenpence the Russian pound ; salt butter 
is half that price at all times. 

I had the curiosity to visit the Miasnoi Rynok, on the 
canal Eriukof, where the butchers^ meat is displayed, both 
before the frost had set in, and after, when the meat was 
frozen ; and I have no hesitation to ^ay, that I have sel- 
dom seen it either better or more cleanly kept any where 
dae, London, perhaps, excepted. The sight of a butcher's 
shop is by far more inviting in St. Petersburgh than in 
Paris. 'Indeed, I should say that there is a degree of 
coquetry about them which one would scarcely expect in 

VOL. II. 2 E 


such places. The oxen slaughtered for the St. Petersburgb 
market come principally from the Crimea, or Little Russia. 
In the former case, these animals are driven some thousand 
Tersts, and do not reach the capital for some months. 
This circumstance has led to a practice which originally 
arose out of an Imperial order, and by which a certain slip 
of land is allotted on each side of the high roads for the 
pasturage of those travelling beasts. The landholders are 
bound to cultivate it with grass and grain for that purpose. 
At given distances on the road there are places erected and 
kept in proper condition, for pasturing the cattle at night 
during the winter. Upon their arrival in the neighbour- 
hood of St. Petersburgh, they are driven to the great dis- 
tilleries, where a trifling sum is paid for feeding them 
upon the refuse grain of distillation, on which they fatten 
considerably. On the road from St. Petersburgb to 
Alexandrowsky, I noticed a very large square and not in- 
elegant building, in which the oxen to be killed are 
kept till a proper time. The operation of slaughtering is 
performed on a, small island at the mouth of the Neva, so 
that the filth and blood are washed down by the stream, 
and thus the city is not exposed, during the summer 
months, to any unpleasant effluvia. 

Curiosity, the most excusable of a traveller's faults, led 
me to pay a visit with my English friend to the Tolkoutchoi 
Uynok, a kind of rag-fair, as I had heard so much of that 
place, and wished to see the humours of low life. Again, it 
was on a Sunday that I proceeded to this market, and was 
surprised to find it so crowded. This singular place is 
situated nearly opposite the Bank of Assignats, in the third 
Admiralty quarter, and consists of an open space of about 
the size of Lincoln^s Inn Fields, covered, in part, with small 
wooden shops and stands, arranged in rows, intersecting 
each other at right angles, and separated by narrow pas- 


sages, paved with wood. Here every kind of article of 
inferior value, for the use of the very lowest classes of 
people is sold ; and in many of these sliops, any person, 
male or female, of that class may get equipped c&p-a-pie 
in less than ten minutes. Around that part of the market 
which is open, the shops have much the appearance of 
booths at fairs, and in them articles of a still inferior de- 
scription are sold ; while the open s(>ace, or square, is filled 
with hawkers, old clothesmen, sellers of kvass, sbitine, gin- 
gerbread, horse-flesh, and a particular sort of black cab- 
bage soup, thick and nasty, of which the poorer people are 
fond. We were solicited, without impertinence, but in 
pressing language, to buy what the people thought we 
stood most in need of; thus to myself, who had only a 
loose English cloak on, they addressed a pressing invitation 
to enter their shops, for they were sure I wanted a thick 
wadded kaftan to keep me warm ; while my friend, who 
walked by my side, like one who feels that his toes are 
pinched with cold, and had only thin boots on to guard 
him against the ice on which we trod, was strenuously 
urged to take shelter under one of the shades, and get him- 
self a pair of the '^ best and cheapest galoshes in the uni- 
veree.'* The crowd was excessive, and we were actually 
shoved from one place to another as we made our way 
through it ; hence the nickname of Tolkoutchoi', or the shov- 
iDg-market. There is another sobriquet given to it, which 
I may be excused repeating ; as it refers to a branch of in- 
sectology by no means agreeable to study. There were a 
very few females among the buyers, and none among the 
seHers. The motley multitude seemed made up of Arme- 
nians, Greeks, Tartars, Calmucks, and many Russians; 
the latter of whom, particularly the young men, as I had 
remarked also in other parts of the capital, have fine and 
pleasing countenances. Here, as well as every where else 

S B ^ 


in St. Petersburgh, with one or two exceptions, you must 
bargain hard. We entered one of the small shops, about 
.eight feet square and seven feet high, in which there were 
a great many books displayed, in order to purchase some 
memento of my visit to this singular market. The shop 
was kept by a quick and sprightly boy, who asked me three 
roubles (25. 6d.) for a small treatise on caligraphy, (spo- 
cobb Derjania pera,) containing eighteen pages of engraved 
copy, which he let me have, at last, for sixty kopeeks {6tL) 
This practice is very general abroad, and to be deprecated, 
inasmuch as it occasions a considerable loss of time ; but to 
assume it at once, as some English travellers have done, as 
an infallible mark of a disposition to cheat is preposterous. 
Usage has sanctioned the practice, and as every body is 
aware of it, the purchaser contents himself with making as low 
an offer for the article as the seller's demand for it is high ; 
and both are therefore quits. I certainly did not expect to 
find in this miserable abode, among the old and welL 
thumbed volumes that lined the shop, some of the works of 
Voltaire, in Russian ; fancy the locality for such a philoso- 
pher ; nor was I less surprised when I was told that a poor 
looking devil, half in rags and unshaven, who had come in 
after us, and had held a short converse with our young 
shopkeeper, had inquired for '* Les Amours du puissant 
Chevalier Amadis de Gaul,^ in the Russian language I 

From this extraordinary place we made our way to the 
Ovoschno'i Rynok, or fruit-market, which, even at that sea- 
son of the year contained some tempting and choice articles, 
such as large water-melons, pine-apples from the interior of 
the empire, Astracan grapes, &c. Oranges are also found 
here in abundance, which are purchased in the English mar 
ket and shipped for Russia. So many skippers are eager to 
arrive first at St. Petersburgh with their cargoes of that de- 
lightful fruit and of lemons, in the spring, that they scarcely 


find payment for their freight. It is stated that a chest 
of four hundred lemons has upon such occasions been pur- 
chased for eight or nine shillings. The bird-market is 
next to the fruit-market. It is divided into two large 
and long avenues of shops . in the one, living birds of 
almost every description are exposed for sale ; in the 
other, poultry and dead game are sold. The Russians 
are very fond of live birds, even when they are not of 
the singing species. It is curious to see several thousand 
large and small red cages hanging in triple rows on the 
outside of about eighty shops, on each side of the avenue, 
containing a vast variety of the feathered tribe ; nor is it 
uninteresting to reflect how they can live exposed to such 
a degree of cold, the temperature being at the time about 
twenty-five degrees of Fahrenheit. In a part of each cage 
a small quantity of snow was placed, which is said to be 
necessary to keep them alive. 

In returning home, my attention was arrested by a man 
carrying partly under his arm, and partly fastened round 
his waist, a brass jar, carefully enveloped with flannel ban- 
dages, and having a spout with a brass- cock at its upper 
end. He appeared to be distributing to the passengers 
some hot liquor in tumblers, which he kept in a spe-* 
des of trough afBxed in front of his dress, and covered 
by a short apron. *' That is a Sbitenstchick,'' said my 
friendly conductor, ^^ and what he sells is the Sbitene, a 
national drink, to which the lower classes are very partial.^ 
I approached the fellow, and had a glass of his nectar ; he 
was about to plunge a large red pimento into the glass, 
previously to pouring out the sbitene, such being the prac- 
tice in general ; but I felt satisfied without that addition. 
The charge for such a draught was a two kopeek piece, 
for which he also gave me the information that it was made 
of eighteen pounds of honey, with fifty croushkis, (quarts) 


A Sbiteostchick . 

of hot water. This mixture, to which pepper is added b; 
some, is drunk hot, with the further addibou of boiliag 
milk, which the sbilenstchick carries about with him, in 
another good-aized vessel. The taste of the sbitene is 
agreeable, and with milk, not unlike that of very sweet tea. 
I understand that in summer the same liquor is sold iced, 
and in great quantity. The man presented so onginal * 
picture, that I thought it might not be amiss to introduce 
a sketch.of him in this place. Kvass, mead, or hydrotnel) 
of a different speaes from sbitene, honey and cranbeny 
juice, both of them fermented, are some of the other na- 
tional beverages which I frequently noticed dealt out by 
traffickers in the street, to the lower classes. I bave 
already mentioned another kind of drink, peculiarly na* 



tioaal, called the kislistchi: this^ however, is not so much 
sought after as kvass, which latter is drunk commonly by 
all classes of persons, and in the best families and is 
made in the following manner: — plain rye-meal, twenty 
pounds ; rye-malt, ten pounds ; barley-malt, three pounds ; 
Mix the two species of malt together, with a sufficient 
quantity of tepid water, in a glazed earthen vessel, to the 
consistency of a liquid paste ; cover it, and let it stand for 
an hour. Four afterwards some warm water over the 
mixture, and add gradually the rye-meal, taking care to 
stir it at the same time, so as to form a homogeneous paste, 
which should be softer than that usually prepared for 
making bread. The vessel is then covered, and the edges 
cemented with bread paste all round. It is then put into 
an oven at the temperature generally observed when bread 
is half baked, where it remains till the following day ; the 
oven is then fresh heated, and the vessel once more re- 
placed in it. On the third day, the vessel is removed, and 
the paste diluted with eight pails of cold water from the 
river, stirring it constantly at the same time with a large 
wooden spoon ; the whole quantity of liquor is poured into 
a barrel, already containing a su£Bcient quantity of leaven, 
stirred well for some minutes, and set aside in a place 
of moderate temperature. As soon as the first froth ap- 
pears on its surface, the barrel is carefully closed, and 
carried to the ice-house, or cold cellar, for two or three 
days, at the end of which it is in a fit state for use. Some 
people add to the above ingredients half a pound of mint 
and two pounds of wheaten and buck- wheat flour, which 
are said to improve the taste, and to increase its effer- 

The Russians have a tolerably good sort of beer, 
(pivo,) which is commonly drunk, and resembles the 
German beer. But, at the tables of the gr^t, English 



bottled p(»ter is oonsidered a luxury. Spirituous liquors, 
however, seem to be the rage among the lower classes; 
and, unfortunately, there is no lack of means for procuring 
them. There is an open kabak at the corner of every 
street, ready to receive the situbund and the idle, who, for 
a few kbpeeks can bum their throats and their digestive 
tubes to their hearf s content. I expected more outward 
and visible tokens of popular drunkenness, from what I 
had read of St. Petersburgh, than I actually observed; 
and yet I walked in the evening very frequently, in prefer- 
ence to riding, and certainly met much less interruption 
from drunkards than I have in London, when trudging to 
some humble dwelling at night, to carry professional suc- 
cour to the patients of charitable institutions. The cheap- 
ness of gin has certainly worked a wonderful change in this 
respect in London, particularly among the lowest classes of 
women, so many of whom are constantly to be seen going 
into, or emerging from, gin-shops, in a state of inebriety in 
which I never once saw a Russian female during my stay 
in St. Petersburgh. No one can better ascertain such a 
fact than the physician of a large Dispensary. I cannot be 
much in error when I aver, that the prevalence of drunkeiv- 
ness among the lower classes in the metropolis in 1817, and 
that inl827, are in the proportion of one to three ; not only 
because we see three times as many pot-valiants about 
the streets and in houses, but because, in the execution 
of our professional duty, three times as many cases of dis- 
ease resulting from hard drinking, now come under our 
notice.* The internal arrangement of a kabak is not very 
unlike one of the London soi-disant wine-vaults, or gin- 

* These observations on drunkenness were yet wet from the hands 
of the printer, when the Report of the Police Committee on the state 
of the metropolis was presented to the House of Commons^ wherein 1 
find the truth of my remark strongly attested, and illustrated by fiicts 
which are attributed to the same cause— gin-drinking. 


shops. There appeared to me, from the slight experience 
I have had, a very marked difference between the drunken 
Russian and the drunken English rabble. In all the in- 
stances which I witnessed of the former, the parties were 
invariably merry and good-natured ; not savage and brutal, 
particularly towards women. 

I have hinted in another place at the prodigious quantity 
of Champagne consumed in St. Petersburgh. Other wines 
are also much esteemed and drunk by all above the hum- 
bler classes ; a glance at the List of Imports annexed to the 
present Volume will give an idea of the general quantity 
consumed. In the South of Russia they are striving to im- 
prove indigenous wine; but as yet it is not so good even as 
that of Ackerman, which enjoys a certain degree of reputa- 
tion. After all, the best, the purest, the most grateful, the 
most healthy, the most delightful, and really national beve- 
rage of the inhabitants of St. Petersburgh, is the water 
of the Neva. Oh, commend me to the water q{ that river 
for quenching thirst, pleasing the palate, and assisting di- 
gestion ! Malvern water must yield the palm to it, and so, 
I take it, must every other water in the world. According 
to the best analysis made of this real nectar, (the thing I 
regret most at St. Petersburgh,) it would appear that in 
fifty pints of it, taken up in the centre of the town, only 
four grains of calcareous earth, and five grains of vegetable 
attract, were found to be present. Ofelices nimium^ those 
who can enjoy such a luxury con amore, and are two 
thousand miles from the Dolphin, and the Chelsea Hospi- 
tal water-courses ! This limpid and ambrosial liquid should 
be taken up in the middle stream of the Neva, in order to 
have it in perfection. When obtained near the shores where 
there are no granite banks, it is somewhat turbid, and its 
taste by no means genuine. 

The inhabitants of St. Petersburgh, high and low, are 
as fond of tea as I am of their Neva water : but I should 


be sorry to be condemned to drink the former again ; not 
because it is bad ; but on the contrary, because it is too 
good. The perfume and sapid qualities of their best sort 
of tea are such as I have never tasted before ; and the effect 
of both upon the nerves is very distressing. The Russians 
are quite finical about tea-making and tea-drinking, and 
understand both arts fully as well, if not better, than 
the English. Their tea-urn, or Samowat, is quite a piece 
of machinery, and admirably calculated for its purpose. 
The tea used in St. Petersburgh reaches that market direct 
from China over-land, and the best is sold at ten roubles 
the Russian pound. It is presumed, that, from the circum- 
stance of its not travelling by sea, the Russian tea retains all 
its bloom and strength, which the English tea loses during 
a long sea- voyage. J know not how far this may be correct. 
Take it all in all, St Petersburgh makes but an indiffer- 
ent display of shops. They ave not, some few of them ex- 
cepted, situated so as to strike a stranger, being generally 
either on the high basement, or on the first story. Even 
those that are more favourably exposed to view, as in the 
Nevskoi Prospekt, for instance, particularly about the 
beginning and middle of that street, are either hidden 
under piazzas, or concealed by projecting columns, so as 
not to present that continued line of shops, one more splen- 
didly decorated and richly stored than the other, which 
flanks our Regent Street, and makes it, without ques- 
tion, the finest in Europe. The Russian shops known 
by the generic name of Gostino'i Dvor, claim the first no- 
tice. This is an extensive pile of buildings of an almost 
triangular form, consisting of ^n inner and an outer range 
of shops, two stories high, placed all round with a court 
in the middle. An arcade runs in front of those that are 
outside the building on the ground, as well as on the prin- 
cipal story. The Gostino'i Dvor is flanked on all sides 


by wide streets, the Nevskoi Prospekt skirting it to the 
North, where it presents a handsome colonnade. The 
building is one thousand and fifty feet long, and the shops, 
disposed in two rows, are three hundred and forty in num- 
ber. All those shops at which the same kinds of commo- 
dities are sold are placed together. Whatever imagination 
can devise with respect to the necessaries, conveniences, 
and even luxuries of life, is to be found in this place, 
which about the middle of the day, being crowded with 
passengers and carriages, assumes the appearance of a 
small town. Hard bargaining is the order of the day. A 
young fellow is generally stationed outside of each shop, 
to allure passengers by a rapid enumeration of the chef-- 
d^cmvres contained within. Some of these shops are really 
handsome, and fitted up with taste; and their different 
commodities are sold at very reasonable prices. 

A short distance from the Gostinoi Dvor, under a long 
arcade that reminded me of Bologna, are the Moscotilno'i 
Riad, or shops for the sale of drugs and colonial produce. 
The Russian castor and Russian rhubarb, I found here in 
abundance. The drugs are kept in very neat order, ar- 
ranged either in large glasses, or in drawers. The shop- 
keeper is generally ignorant of the properties of what he 
sells : but I found one or two who spoke a little Latin, and 
whom I questioned about the laws that regulate the sale of 
drugs both retail and wholesale ; and was surprised to find 
that the medical police does not extend to them, as it does 
to the compounders of medicines, and physicians' prescrip- 
tions. One of these good people who is the most extensive 
seller of drugs in St. Petersburgh, mentioned to me the 
kind of articles of the materia medica which are in greatest 
request in that capital. One could form a tolerable idea 
of the state of practical medicine in the Russian metro- 
pdis from his answers. The quantity of dry plants, roots. 


barks and twigs, which he is in the daily habit of selling, 
besides some of the more potent drugs, almost surpasses 

A city like St. Petersburgh, which requires a supply of 
every species of foreign manufacture, and in which foreign 
merchants and tradesmen have always met with encourage- 
ment, afforded a field for speculation, to the English in par- 
ticular, too tempting to be neglected, for establishing sl depot 
of the merchandise of their native country. Accordingly, 
we find that a person of the name of Owen, formed many 
years ago an establishment under the name of English Ma- 
gazine, which has flourished ever since, and is much acha- 
landi. The house is situated in the Malaya Millionnaya 
{petite millionne) a short, but wide street, leading from the 
Tropheal Arch of the Etat Major to the Nevsko'i Prospekt, 
to which the house forms an angle. There are on the first 
floor twenty-five rooms en suite^ filled with every descrip- 
tion of merchandise ; and each room constitutes, as it were, 
a separate shop, which is attended by an Englishman, solely 
attached to it. The establishment may be considered as a 
sort of promenade or lounge, which is much frequented, 
and may be said to be the resort of all the fashion in St 
Petersburgh at a particular time of the day. Ij; is now 
conducted by another person, and I believe with equal 
success. I thought it, however, inferior to our Soho-square 
Bazaar, in every species of article which is to be met with 
equally in either — inferior in method and arrangement, and 
in the value and beauty of the various objects. But 
the English Magazine of St. Petersburgh combines the 
woollen and linen-drapery, with other branches of traffic 
In most of the articles of manufacture which are made in St 
Petersburgh by Russian artists, under the direction of the 
English proprietor of this Magazine, such for instance as 
or-molu, and malachite ornaments, Russian leather pocket- 


books and cases stamped with ornamented dies, and some 
other objects, the workmanship appeared to me infinitely 
superior to any thing I had seen before. 

External clothing is a sore subject at St. Petersburgh. 
The Russians are strenuously endeavouring to improve 
their manufacture of woollen cloths ; and as an encourage- 
ment to one or two branches of it in particular, that 
of black and green cloths, the latter of which is very 
commonly used for the army, as well as by many of the 
civilians, prohibitory laws have lately been promulgated by 
M. Cancrin, the Minister of Finance, which will pro- 
bably injure those of the English merchants, who had 
already shipped some hundreds of bales for the St. Peters- 
burgh market. The Russians have, in a special manner, 
directed their attention to the Merino breed, in which they 
are said to be succeeding rapidly ; yet I cannot say that 
I have seen any very fine blue or black cloth of their own 
manufacture. English cloth is what is most appreciated ; 
but this is sold dear. A suit of clothes costs a great deal 
more than in England. The make of them is on a par 
with that of the Parisian exquisites, in regard to civilians ; 
but, as to the military, no other country can boast of such 
an artisie as Okoulofi^, tailleur de Sa Majesti. That 
officer must be truly indifferent to his personal appearance 
who does not strive to get his uniform cut by that cele- 
brated person. He is as much the rage among the gentle- 
men, as Mesdames Ugon and Xavier, (the latter of whom 
was originally an actress,) are among the ladies, as modiste 
the one, and marchande de chapeaux the other. 

Furs are a part, and a most necessary part of clothing 
for the winter. The shops where these are sold are objects 
of curiosity to a stranger. A visit to M. Chaplin's vast 
•* magoHn de fourrures ,et pelleteries^^ in the Nevskoi 
Prospekt, will amply repay him for the trouble. Russian 

430 FURS. 

and American bear-skins, already cut out into lining for 
pelisses or shoobsy from SOO to 1,600 roubles each ; and 
the yenoi€i which is more commonly used for lining great 
coats, for 500 or 600 roubles, will be found in perfection. 
Ermines and sable fetch a very extravagant price ; but still 
are much cheaper than in England. The former are sold 
in the shape of a large bag, double the width at the bot- 
tom. One of these, which will cut out into two large 
pelerine tippets, with two broad and long tails in front, a 
garniture of great width at the bottom for two dresses, and 
cuffs to both also, may be had of the purest white, for S50 
roubles, or about fifteen guineas. Beaver-skin collars are 
much worn ; dark coloured fox-skins are very expensive, and 
dearer the darker they are. Wolf-skins, of all colours, but 
all considered common, tiger and leopard skins, squirrel 
skins, particularly the blue, white hare skins, and Siberian 
cat skins, are also to be met witlji in M. Chaplin*s shop in 
great abundance. 

Linen during my stay in St. Petersburgh was said to 
be cheaper than it had formerly been, and the quantity 
exported to have diminished considerably, and latterly 
to be decreasing still more. The coarse sort, known un- 
der the name of huccaback in England, and the flems^ 
of various degrees of 6neness, are alone sent to the Eng- 
lish market. Some diaper^ too, is called for, and towel- 
ling would be well received, were it as strong and stout 
as it used formerly to be, and the towels not so narrow. 
I took great pains to inquire into this branch of Russian 
trade and manufacture, with the kind assistance of the 
lady of Mr. Anderson, the merchant. The finest linen 
is decidedly not preferable either to the Dutch or to the 
Irish, though much cheaper, and little of it is exported. 
There is another sort of stou( linen, called ravendockf 
which is sent to America. It is a most useful article, and 
is very reasonable. The finer and bleached linen is gene- 


rally in pieces of from twenty to twenty-four archines, 
rolled Tip ; but as the number of archines contained in 
each piece is not uniformly fixed, such linen is bought by 
the measure. I saw some very fine linen, firmly set and 
strong, sold at one rouble and thirty kopeeks (paper) the 
archine, or seven-ninths of an English yard. At the then 
exchange of lOj^ the rouble, the price of the archine of 
that doth was about Is. to 1|J. or Is. 6d. the English yard, 
which could not, I am sure, be bought for less than three 
shillings in England. There were two other sorts, of a 
much finer quality, which had fetched the year before from 
two and a half to three, and even four roubles the ar- 
chine ; but which, at the end of 1827, were sold for half 
that price. These three kinds of linen are to be met with 
in the nnurket from trade-looms ; but in general they are 
purchased of a better quality, and at still more reduced 
prices, from peasants, or serfs, who spin their own flax, and 
weave the cloth on the estate of their masters; from which 
circumstance it is distinguished by the name of Domoshney 
These peasants frequently come into St. Petersburgh, and 
are in the habit of calling at private houses, particularly 
those of the English, to dispose of their stocks. 

The flems are sold in pieces of fifty archines properly 
measured, and are an archine and a half wide. Some of 
them are very coarse ; but the kind most in use is fit 
for servants' sheets when bleached: they were sold at 
that time wholesale at from thirty to thirty-five roubles 
the 100 archines. The ravendock, which is a yard 
wide, and is fit for covering stair carpets, making aprons, 
coarse towels, &c., may be had for eighty kopeeks, or 
eightpence the English yard. A piece of diaper towelling, 
containing twelve towels, one yard and three-quarters 
long, costs fifteen roubles, or twelve shillings and sixpence. 
Table-cloths and other figured linens seemed very inferior 


to any I had seen in England, though stronger. The 
linen purchased from the peasants has the additicmal ad* 
vantage of being in its genuine state, and is not starched 
or pressed. 

The expenses of living at St. Petersburgh may be 
judged of by what I have already stated, and by the pe- 
rusal of a short list, annexed to this chapter, of all the 
necessaries of life and their prices, which I obtained from 
a lady who has been at the head of a large family for 
many years in that city, and who is her own housekeeper, 
as all married ladies should be *^ who love their lords.^ 
Supposing a person to move in the sphere in which the 
family of the lady in question moves — every luxury as 
well as convenience and necessary of life, including a close 
carriage and pair, which such a person might require, and 
which would cost a sum of fifteen hundred a*year in Lon* 
don, — may, I have been assured, be obtained and enjoyed 
in quiet, for twenty or twenty-two thousand roubles in 
St. Petersburgh. 

A thrifty housekeeper, however, need not, in very severe 
weather, expose herself to the inconvenience of going to 
market, for there is a set of people called Rasnostchicks, who 
regularly attend private houses, bringing daily along with 
them whatever article of the necessaries of life they judge 
likely to be required, and generally good as to quality, as 
well as correct in regard to quantity. These people settle 
their accounts either monthly or half-yearly with families 
whom they once know ; but sfiort reckonings are the best 
It is curious to see how quickly these people, as well as 
other Russian tradesmen, will cast up their reckoning with- 
out either trusting to their memory, or using any pencil, or 
ink, but by means of the Stchety, which may be considered 
as *^ tangible arithmetic,'' and consists of a square board 
having a number of vertical brass wires passing through a 


certain number of black and white ivory beads. It is 
by the peculiar arrangement of these beads, that the first 
operations of arithmetic are performed cleverly as well as 
quickly by the St. Petersburgh shopkeepers. 

A great part of the provisions and other commodities 
for the St. Petersburgh market, are taken thither by win- 
ter and summer carriers, called Izvoschiks, who may be said 
to form a class of people entirely apart from the rest of the 
population in many striking respects. The winter carriers 
generally go in caravans amounting often to one hundred in 
number^ which are called Oboz ; I met some of these on my 
return. Their carts are upon small and very low sledges ; 
and the fares are considerably less than by the more ordi- 
nary conveyances, although they carry more weighty and 
perform their journey more quickly. They generally 
trfivel from sixty to eighty versts a-day. The summer car- 
riers' carts, or Teliegas, are upon four wheels, which are 
of a light construction. The nave of the wheel projeets 
more than a foot, in order to prevent the upsetting of the 
carriage in the dreadful and deep ruts over which they 
have sometimes to pass. They carry from twenty to 
thirty poods of goods^ are drawn by a single horse, and 
go at the rate of from thirty to forty versts a-day. They 
also travel in caravans consisting of a hundred carts each, 
one man taking charge of four of them at a time. 


During the Autumn and Winter Season. 
Bread and Fhur. 
Rye Bread, I rouble 30 kopeeks a pood. 
Bread per pound or otherwise. 

Three and a half loaves make 1 lb. sold for 38 kopeeks^ as 
good as French bread in London. 
Floor, (wheaten) the very whitest^ S3 roubles for SOO Russian 
VOL. IL 2 F 



Beef, 15 kopeeks 1 lb. Riiss. 

Mutton^ %S kopeeks. 

Lamb^ 5 roubles for a wbole one. 

Veal (Aicbangel b the best and cheapest)^ 70 to 80 kopeeks a lb. 

Pork^ 25 to 30 kopeeks^ fresh : a sacking pig, 3 roubles, the frosen 
much less : a good deal eaten in winter. 

Game and PwiUry, 

Partridges, 80 kopeeks the pair. 
Black Cock, Si roubles a pair. 

Smaller Game — Silktails and Bullfinches, 12 kopeeks a pair. 
Fowls, from 3 to 4 roubles a pair, very large ; frozen, %i roubles a 
Geese, l rouble each. 
Turkeys, 3 to 5 roubles ; very large indeed. 

Vegetables, &c. 

Roots, 1^ rouble for 100 carrots. 
Celery Roots, 1^ rouble for 100. 
Grapes, 1| per lb. 



Best Kvass, per quart, 15 kopeeks. 

Kislistchy, 15 kopeeks a quart. 

Best Beer, 40 kopeeks a bottle. 

Cream — One bottle, containing one pint and a half, 1 rouble. 

Milk — One bottle, 30 kopeeks. 

Oil (Olive), 3 roubles the Provence bottle. 

Tea, over-land, from 8 to 10 and 20 roubles 1 lb. Russian. 

Coffee, 45 roubles a pood— or 36 lbs. English. 

Gallipoli Oil, 30 roubles a pood. 

Spermaceti Oil, rare, not used. 

Other neeessariei. 

Butter, 1 rouble a lb. ; Salt Butter, 50 kopeeks per lb. Russian. 

Eggs, sold by tens, at 40 kopeeks (common.) 

Fresh Eggs, 2 roubles for ten. 

Salt — Foreign Salt, 2 roubles 80 kopeeks a pood. 


Wax Candles^ best^ 60 roubles a pood^ or Is. 4d. a lb. English. 

Tallow Candles^ 13 roubles a pood, or 3|d. a lb. English. 

Soap, Tallow-Soap, 10 roubles a pood, very good ; and white, 
doable that sum. 

Wood, from 7 to 10 roubles a fathom, 1 arohine wide, ) of archine 

Waahidg (generally), 600 roubles a year, for a family of 12. 

Wages, Carriages, &c. 

Fooiman's Wages — ^from 35 to 40 roubles per month, fed, and no 
Wages to Coaohman, 40 roubles per month; not fed, and dress 

Wages to Postilion, when 4 horses are kept, S5 roubles per month ; 
not fed. 

Dvomick, 30 roubles a month : not fed. 

Maid Servants' Wages — Cook, Lady's-maid, and Laundrymaid, S5 
roubles a month. 

Housemaid and Nurserymaid, 15 roubles. 

Board Wages, 15 roubles a month. 

Servants have no fixed apartments, bedding, clothing, sugar, tea, 
or any thing eke provided for them ; and even in the best houses they 
sleep any where, on the stairs, &c 

Horses alone, dOO roubles per annum. 

Hay, 60 kopeeks to 75 per pood. 

Oats, 7^ roubles to 8 roubles a bag, 8 Tchertverik. 

Straw, 50 kopeeks a pood. 

A sledge and pair, carriage and coachmen, (wages and board wages 
induded) 250 roubles (ten guineas) per month. 

A dose carriage and four horses, coachman and postilion (wages 
and board wages included) 450 roubles (eighteen guineas) per month. 

N. B. A pair of horses, without a carriage or coachman, but kept 
by the hackneyman, nuiy be hired in the winter for 100 roubles per 

House Rent is high. 

2 F 2 




Conversations with eminent and impartial persons, on many importttkt 
Subjects. — Progress op Civilization w Russia. — Parallel with 
that of England, —Jurisprudence and state of the legal profes- 
sion in Russia. — Forms of Law, number and character of vanoos 
CourU. — Administration of Justice. — Trial by Peers.— Court 
of Habeas Corpus in St. Petersburgh.— Prisons, and Prison Difl- 
cipllne. ^ The Town Gaol on the plan of Howard. — Extraordi- 
nary number of prisoners in Russia during 18S6. — Still more ex- 
traordinary reduction in the course of a twelvemonth. — Society 
for improving Prison Discipline. — Commission o{ General SurveU^ 
lance. — Corporeal Punishments. — Whipping in the West Indies. — 
Flogging in the British Navy. — The Knout in Russia. — De- 
scription of the Instrument. — Ceremony of its Application. —The 
'' Cato'-nine-teils." — The Rope's-end. — Commission for drawing 
up new Codes of Laws. — Monsieur Speransky. — MonffleurBi- 
LOUHiAVSKY. — Capture of Tiflis. — Public Illuminations at St. Pe- 
tersburgh. — Watch houses. — Boodoschniks, or military Watch- 
men. — Proclamation of New Laws. — Iron Pavilions, and Fires in 
the Street pro bono publico, -^SlBte of the Police in St Peten- 
burgh. — Provisions against Fire. — New Fire Insurance Com- 
pany. — Absence of Beggars — The Military Governor-Gbvbral 
of St. Petersburgh. -^ Census and Statistics of Russia. —The ka- 
lian vereus the Gregorian Calendar, or Old and New Style.— 
System of Sbrvaoe in Russia. — Expose and apparent advan- 
tages of that System. — Rectification of erroneous ideas on that 
subject. — Mode of recruiting the Army dependent thereon. — 
Facility of collecting the Public Income founded on that System. — 
Particulars, respecting General Levies. — Corporeal Punishments in 
the Russian Army. — SuccESSioir to the Throne of Russia in 1985. 
— Contest of Loyalty and Affection between two Imperial Bro- 
thers. — The Military Revolt of the 26th of December. — Death 
of Miloradovitch. •^— Firmness and bravery of Nicholas. — Der 
tected Conspiracy. — Capital Pumshment. 

" Mais, mon cher Docteur," continued k Procureur'^ 
with whom I had been conversing on subjects of great in- 


tcrest connected with the state of Russia ; ^^ on se trompe en 
Europe lorsqu'^on croit que nous sommes insensibles aux d6- 
fauts qui existent encore dans certains 6tats de notre exist- 
ence comme une nation Europ^enne. Madame de Stael, qui 
d'*ai]leurs nous a assez bien trait^s, pretend que nous avons 
bien des pas k faire, pour arriver au faite de la civilisation. 
— We are aware of that fact, and none can be more so than 
those in whom the power of promoting civilization is vested. 
Look at the last and present Emperor ; has not the one 
been exerting himself through life to improve and extend 
education, because he knew that by that means alone the 
condition of his people could be improved ; and does not the 
other, from the conviction of its necessity, study to intro- 
duce a greater degree of regularity in the administration of 
the country, and, above all, to place on a rational and firm 
basis the civil and criminal codes which are to govern fifty- 
three millions of people ? But in that last word lies the 
cause of the little apparent progress we have made in the 
career of reform. You have seen enough of us to judge 
whether we are susceptible or not of improvement. You 
have examined with care our Institutions, and can say 
whether the elements of future amendment are not already 
sown, and sedulously cultivated. What you have observed 
in this capital prevails at Moscow, and in some other large 
dties, and will successively extend to many more points of 
this vast continent. What reason, then, is there for sup- 
posing that we alone, of all the nations in Europe, shall not 
attain that degree of general knowledge and civil import- 
ance, which none will deny us to have acquired as a po- 
litical body ? But there must be time for all improve- 
ments, and, as our reigning Sovereign has very justly 
remarked, ' it is not by rash enterprises, which are inva- 
riably ruinous, but by degrees, that real ameliorations are 
biought about, that chasms are filled up, and abuses re- 


formed.'' — How long a time has England been in gainmg 
the proud elevation on which she now stands ? What a 
period elapsed between the barbarous days of the last 
Henry and her present epoch of general knowledge ! Where, 
in those dark times, was the boasted independence of 
Parliament, which, during the first twenty years of that 
Sovereign's reign sat, altogether, a twelvemonth*; and 
which thoroughly subdued, like Eastern slaves, they and 
the people whom they represented, instead of resisting, in- 
clined to admire, the very acts of tyranny of their ruler ? 
It is within the last three centuries that England was go- 
vemed by a Sovereign in whose reign, according to the 
testimony of Holinshed, no less than seventy-two thousand 
criminals were executed ; a monarch who, scorning the com- 
mon laws of nature and religion, married six wives, repudi* 
ated two of them, and beheaded two others ; consigned to 
an ignominious death the son of the first noblemm in 
his kingdom; affected to become a Protestant that he 
might seize on the property of the clergy ; and died him- 
self a Catholic, leaving money for masses to be said foit 
the delivery of his soul from purgatory. At that time, 
the ignorance of the people was such that a sufficient num- 
ber of persons could with difficulty be found to write in- 
telligible language for the purposes of government, ot to' 
hold officea; and a statute was passed allowing mi^strates 
of towns or boroughs to retail wine and victuals.-|- A 
further idea may be formed of the abject state of the 
nation, when it is considered that every subject was, by 
another statute, made amenable to the penalty of treason^ 
if he asserted that the two first marriages of the Kii^ were 
valid. It was two hundred and eighty years ago, that the 
first chair for teaching the Greek language was founded in 
that country, the novelty of which threw Oxford into vio» 
lent factions, and public-whij^ng was inflicted in. the 
♦ Hume's History of England, Henry VIII. f 3 Henry VIII, c. 8. 


name of the Sling on those who pronounced that language 
in a particular manner. It was two hundred and eighty 
years ago that one of Henry's queens despatched messengers 
to a neighbouring country to procure the luxury of a salad 
for her table. And through what gradations, many of them 
of the most humiliating nature, has not that nation proceed- 
ed, to attain her present high station ! Who can read the 
historical records of the two Royal Charleses ; of the preva- 
lence of vice and ignorance of those times ; the coarse vul- 
garity of the Rulers of the Commonwealth ; the many deeds 
of superstition in the people, rapacity in the great, oppres- 
sion in the governors, by which even later epochs of the 
history of Britain have been marked ; without admitting that 
she was barbarous before she was wise ? She has, at last, 
conquered all the difficulties which universal ignorance had 
entailed on her ; and by the progressive advance of civi- 
lization, fostered by wiser sovereigns, has secured to 
herself institutions admirably calculated for her improved 
moral condition. Such is or must be the history of every 
nation, and such will be our own. We have effected in 
the course of the first century of our national existence 
what it took other nations in Europe three times that pe- 
riod to perform. We have accomplished, within the last 
twenty-five years, as much as we had effected in the hundred 
years previous. But the reform of abuses ; the correction 
of errors when detected ; the improvement of the people, 
mhen that has become necessary — must begin by first pre- 
paring the community who are to enjoy the benefit of 
those changes ; and such preparation is not the work of a 
moment, cannot be the result of a mere revolution. To 
alter the temper and construction of the main and anima- 
ting spring of the political machinery of an empire, before 
the wheels are aptly put togetlier, and cleared of all clog- 
ging impediments to action, is to risk the safety of the 
entire mechanism : the better plan is to begin by reforming 


the people, and this, no one will deny, is now going on 
in Russia^ and will continue to do so under the wise mea- 
sures of the present sovereign.^ 

There was so much apparent truth in many of the as- 
sertions of the Procureur — , while others seemed so 
plausible, that I felt it unnecessary to prolong a disserta- 
tion into which I wais not prepared, after all, to enter. I 
however took the liberty to inquire whether the present 
state of the criminal, as well as of the common law of the 
country, notwithstanding all the efforts and philanthropic 
intentions of Catherine, was not greatly inferior to that 
of other European nations.--*** You sliould say the state 
of our legal profession, rather than of our present sys- 
tem of laws, although even the latter is susceptible of 
as much improvement with us, as the equity branch, the 
penal, and the common law appear to be in England, if 
we may credit the great authorities of the late eminent 
lawyer, the Chevalier Romilly, and of the present Minister 
of the Interior, Mr. Peel, or of Monsieur Brougham, le 
Coryphee de V Opposition, At present^ in Russia, any per- 
son having, or fancying that he has, the least smattering or 
knowledge of the law, can practise as a lawyer. Hence, in 
many towns, old soldiers, or officers, are to«be met with, who 
actually follow the legal profession, although they have 
no other information on the subject, than a mere superfi- 
ciid acquaintance with some of the forms and technical 
terms, which they have picked up in their intercourse with 
every class of society, while in the army. Unfortunately, 
such is the general disposition of the people to chicanery 
and lawsuits, in most of the provinces, that those persons 
find enough to employ them ; there being, properly speak- 
ing, no regular lawyers brought up under solicitors, or in 
inns of courts, nor people called to the bar after a com- 
petent education. A proof of this disposition to litigation 
in the people of this country, will be found in the fact 


that in the course of 1826, upwards of 2,860,000 causes 
bad come before the different tribunals of the Empire. 
The efforts of some of our sovereigns to correct such 
abuses have met with great obstacles ; yet some degree of 
amelioration has taken place of late, as it has been or- 
dained that, in future, persons desirous of practising as 
lawyers, shall undergo certain examinations on subjects 
connected with that profession, at some one of the Univer- 
sities ; and henceforward, it is intended to establish a regu- 
lar system of legal instruction, and to regulate the general 
practice of the law. With regard to the forms of adminis- 
tration of the latter, we are very much on the same footing 
on which France stood, before the introduction of the jury 
sy^eva. There is, in criminal matters, for instance, a TW- 
bunal d'EnquitCf as in France, or Politzey Bureau^ answer- 
ing to your Justices of the Peace, and police magistrates ; 
a Tribunal de Premiire Instance^ a Court of Appeal, and 
lastly, one of Cassation. The mere names of these four 
Courts will explain to you the Jiliire which a case of crimi-* 
nal, and in some instances, of civil or common law, is liable 
to go through. Judges are appointed by the Emperor for 
each province or city in the Empire, whose jurisdiction ex- 
tends not beyond the district in which they reside, as they 
do not go, what, in England, are called the circuits. All 
judges are removable at pleasure ; and where the state of 
elementary * law-education continues as defective as it is 
at present, the power vested in the sovereign of dismissing 
a judge, is likely to do less mischief than his immova- 
bility, when found to be incompetent, would entail on the 
community. The simplest part of our law system, is that 
which has a reference to its municipal administration. In 
every town, or city, there is, besides the governor appoint- 
ed by the sovereign, a governing, or municipal body, an- 
swering to the mayors of England and France, with a 
number of assistants (adjoints). The magistrates are elected 


every three years by the resident inhabitants, ivho are 
merchants, tradesmen, or shopkeepers. Tins municipal 
body is called the Gradskai'a Doom^, from the word doO' 
maty to think ; implying, that the members constituting the 
board, are the persons who think for the inhabitants. The 
mayor himself is styled the Glava, or head. Every ar- 
rangement of the police, for the security and discipline of 
the town, can originate in this body alone ; and the ex- 
penses of providing quarters as well as fuel for the troops, 
together with every other charge, are paid by the Doom^ 
out of the funds belonging to the town, the uncontrolled 
disposal of which, as well as their collection, belong also 
to that body. These funds are formed out of particular 
taxes, the ground-rents of the houses, the farming out of 
weights and measures, the granting of licenses to establish 
trades or open shops, the produce of lands belonging to 
the town, and a fourth per cent, more or less, according to 
circumstances, paid yearly, on the bona^fide capital of mer- 
chants. The manner in which the funds in question are 
disposed of, is reported yearly to the Imperial Governor, 
for his information and approbation. That officer can 
order the Dooma to appropriate such parts of those funds 
to any particular purpose connected with the interests of 
the town, in cases of real necessity, or of manifest utility ; 
but not for his own gratification. He may point out to 
the Doomsl the expediency of a particular measure, any 
deficiency or neglect which he may think requires atten- 
tion or amendment ; but he must leave it to that body to 
carry those suggestions into effect, when and in what man- 
ner they think proper. This representative, then, of an ab- 
solute monarch, the Imperial Governor of a town, is natber 
a proconsul, a bashaw, nor an Austrian Imperial Commis- 
sary« such as you must have met with in Italy, whose will, 
whose word, is law, and the whole law, in the district or city 
over which such persons rule in the name of their masters." 



Je serois biea aise. Monsieur le Procureur, I next ob- 
served, d^avoir une id^ g^n^rale, de la manidre avec 
laquelle se fait Tadministration de la justice en RusaieP 
" There are in every principal <nty of each Grovemment (pro- 
vince),^ answered the Procureur, ^^ two distinct Courts or 
tribunals. The first is the Town Court, for the merchants, 
tradesmen, and shopkeepers, called MagUtrat in large, and 
Ratoosha in smaller towns. This tribunal consists of the 
Burgemeister ^ and the Rathmenn (adjoints). All civil 
and criminal matters affecting the bourgeoisie and mer- 
chants, are tried in this Court ; and in the capital of each 
Province there is a separate tribunal for strangers, whe- 
ther foreigners or Russians, not belonging to the town in 
which they happen to reside (Nadvorni Sood) which has 
the same attributes. The second is the District Court 
(Ooyesdnoy Sood), which is divided into two sections, the 
Civil and Criminal. In the principal, or chief town of 
each Government, there is a superior Court of the same 
description ; in which matters, both criminal and civil, of 
greater importance are tried, and appeals heard against 
the sentences of inferior, or provincial Courts. The former 
are called Ougolovndia Palata ; the latter Grajdanskaid 
Palata. In all these Courts, there is a Procureur de la 
Couronnej or Attorney- General, who points out the law, 
but cannot enforce it ; he may protest against, but cannot 
interfere with the sentence of the Court, respecting which, 
he may address the Minister of Justice. In the tribunals 
of smaller towns, the man of law, I will not call him a law* 
yer, who watches over the proceedings, and expounds the 
technicalities of the law to the judges, is called a Striaptchii/f 
or arrangeuTy if I may coin a word in French for the pur- 
pose of conveying to you the Russian meaning. In all 
cases, there is a secretary to each Court, who, as well as 
the (Nresident> is always named by the Crown, except in 



White Russia and Poland; a Court consists of a pre- 
sident, counsellor or secretary, and the assesseurs or assist- 
ants of the judge (a sort of permanent special jury), among 
whom the noblesse^ as well as the merchants, have a right 
to have representatives. This last circumstance, which 
most of the recent travellers in Russia have either over- 
looked or suppressed in their narratives, gives, in a man- 
ner, to the judicial system by which the people in Russia 
is governed, a character of democracy, approaching in 
some respect to the system of trial by jury, and is, at- all 
events, much more liberal than the system which obtains 
in the Criminal Courts of more than one other monairchical 
Government in Europe. In Russia, no one is judged, whe- 
ther in matters that concern his property, or those which af- 
fect his person, without the presence of his peers on the bench. 
Thus the nobles, or those who have the right of holding 
land and employing peasants, select from among themselves, 
and appoint assesseursy to assist the judge in trying causes- 
The merchants, tradesmen, and shopkeepers, or the bour^ 
geoisiey have also the same privilege of appointing their 
own representatives to sit on the bench. Lastly, the 
peasants themselves enjoy the benefit of seeing among the 
judges who are to try them in the first instance, but not 
in cases of appeal, persons of their own class, whom diey 
have themselves chosen. These i-epresentatives of the 
three States, are elected every three years in general as- 
semblies, by a majority of votes. In the case of the no- 
blesse, the choice is definitive ; in that of the merchants 
and peasants, the names of the candidates elected must be 
presented to the Imperial Governor, who confirms the re- 
turn or not, as he thinks proper, without assigning any 
reason. The noblesse have, moreover, the right of selecting 
from among the judicial representatives of their own class 
in every district, one who is to watch over and protect 



their interests, immunities, and rights, and who is an 
unpaid officer. He is called Le Marichal de la No* 
blesse: his privileges are considerable, and extend over 
the whole province in which he acts. He is also the head 
of the Court of Tutelage^ and it is through him that the 
nobility of* each province present petitions, remonstrances, 
&c., either to the provincial Governor or the Sovereign him- 
self. The general assemblies of the nobility name three or 
four candidates to this important dignity, out of their own 
number of judicial representatives already in office, and 
submit them to the Imperial Grovemor, who is bound to 
select one of them.^ — As the Procureur had mentioned the 
Tribunal de Tutelle^ I requested him to state in what that 
system of protection for . orphans and wards consisted ; 
the question being one of great interest, and at this mo- 
ment forming part of the investigation which was going 
on in regard to the English Court of Chancery. In Eng- 
land, I observed to the Procureur, the protection of 
orphans, and minors bereft of their natural guardians, is 
vested in one person only, who has, moreover, the fearful 
power of severing the natural ties between a father and his 
children, and of committing the interest and education of 
the latter to other guardians. How is it in Russia ? 

^^ In the civil section of the court, which I have already 
mentioned to you under the name of Oojesni-sood, there is 
a branch or separate tribunal for the protection of orphans, 
or wards, and widows also, and the management of their 
afFurs. This tribunal appoints proper guardians for the 
wards, and receives every year their rents or incomes. 
The guardians have five per cent, on the income of their 
wards allowed them by the law for their own use, intended 
to act as a bonus or encouragement to them to improve the 
property of the ward. They cannot, without authorization 
from the Senate, sell, mortgage, or otherwise alienate any 


part of the property confided to their charge. The guar- 
dianship lasts till the ward is of age, or one-and-twenty. 
In cities having a Doom^, the GlavsL is at the head of the 
Court in question as far as the merchants are concerned, and 
Government cannot exercise the slightest interference with 
its proceedings. There is a tribunal of this kind in every 
principal town, which is bound to send every year a ta- 
bular account of all the orphans, wards, and widows, under 
its care, mentioning their state of. health, progress of edu- 
cation, income, expenses, Sec, to the Grajdnnikaia palata^ 
by which the Court of Tutelage is controlled. When the 
ward is of age, he may protest against any part of the 
conduct of his guardian, demand every rent-roll, voucher 
of expenditure, inventory, and all other documents and 
accounts, and sue him for damages if he appears to have 
been guilty of malversation. The nobility have a Court 
of tutelage of their own, called Dvorianskaia Opeka, at 
which the Marichal de la Noblesse presides, who is also 
president of a similar court in behalf of the peasants. 

^^ I must also mention to you the nature of another tribu- 
nal, peculiar, in some respects, to our country, constituting 
a sort of Court of Conscience, formed by members entirely 
elected by the nobility, the bourgeoisie^ and the peasants, for 
the respective interests of each, and called Sovestnoy Sood. 
This Court judges all criminal causes of minor importance ; 
matters, whether of personal dispute or litigation respecting 
property, in which both parties agree to appear before it, 
and also all questions not already provided for by the 
existing laws. It is, in fact, a species of Court of Mediators. 
Its judgment in criminal matters cannot be carried into 
effect without being previously submitted to, and approved, 
by the Imperial Governor. 

** The most important province of this Court, how- 
ever, as our academician Storch has properly and forcibly 
stated, and by which it becomes, in some measure, the 


most venerable tribunal of the nation, and in the strict- 
est sense the palladium of personal security, is this: 
when any one delivers a jpetition to the Court of Con- 
science, specifying that he has been detained in prison 
upwards of three days, and that during that time it has not 
been explained to him why he is thus kept in confinement, 
or that in those three days he has not been interrogated, 
then the Court of Conscience is bound, on receiving such a 
petition, and before the Court breaks up, to issue an order 
that the prisoner, (if he be not committed for offences 
against the person of the Sovereign, for treason, murder, 
or robbery,) be brought into the Court of Conscience, 
and be there shown, adding the reasons of his arrest or 
imprisonment, and why he has not been interrogated. It 
18 enacted that such an order must be executed in the 
place or prison in which it is served, within the space of 
&n hour; but if it be not fulfilled within twenty-four 
hours, the President of the Court shall be fined in the 
penalty of 600 roubles, (silver,) and each of the asses- 
sors must likewise pay a fine of 100 roubles. If the 
Court of Conscience finds that the prisoner has not been 
detained for any of the crimes above specified, it issues a 
decree to set him so far at liberty, that on the receipt of 
a proper order, he may hereafter either be brought before 
them, or before any provincial court or tribunal, which- 
ever he may choose, and where his cause is to be forth- 
with tried. This is, in fact, as you will readily see, 
mon cher Docteur, an equivalent to the power of Habeas 
Carpus in England, and of bailing, possessed in many 
cases by the judges of that country. There is, moreover, 
another court of justice, called the Oral Tribunal, (Sloves- 
noy Soodj) in whieh trifling causes are tried without any 
formal process. 

**Have you seen our prison in St. Petersburgh, and 
particularly the new Town-gaol, built according to the 


suggestions of that great philanthropist, Howard, whose 
remains repose in a remote part of our empire ?" My 
answer was in the negative. My time had, since my 
arrival, been too much otherwise occupied, to allow me 
to carry into effect my intention of visiting either that 
prison or the House of Correction. " The state of our 
prisons,^ continued my indefatigable informant, ^' I will 
venture to assert, would have given you satisfaction. 
During the Embassy of the Duke of Wellington to St 
Petersburgh, I accompanied a gentleman who was attached 
to it, and who had seen some of the prisons in his own 
country, and particularly Newgate, to our Town-gaol and 
House of Detention, (Politzia,) and he admitted that the 
former of these was in every respect superior to that cele- 
brated prison. One great advantage in our prisons is, that 
their inmates are better fed, and are not so crowded ; and 
this, notwithstanding the extraordinary large number of pri*- 
soners, which, in the year 1826, amounted in the whole extent 
of the Empire to 127,000.'' I recollect seeing the last 
mentioned fact, I observed, recorded in a rescript of the Em- 
peror to Prince Labanoff Rostovsky, the Minister of Jus- 
tice, dated the 17th of January, 1827, and being struck at 
the time with astonishment, not so much at the enormous 
number of people confined in the different gaols of Russia, 
as quoted by yourself, as at the additional fact stated by 
his Majesty in that document, that the number of pri- 
soners in question had, by the increased diligence and ac- 
tivity of the tribunals, Jbeen reduced, at the beginnbg of 
that year, to 4900. This was the strongest proof that 
could be afforded of the excellent effects produced, and 
likely, still further to be produced, by the system adq)t€d 
by his present Majesty, of daily inspecting the reports of 
the state of the prisons in his Empire, and of his interpo- 
sition in expediting every trial, shortening the period of im- 
prisonment^ where that seems necessary, and even watching 




the proceedings of the different tribunals. The con- 
cluaon of that same rescript is too remarkable, and too 
well calculated to illustrate your assertion that the Em- 
peror Nicholas is desirous of improving the state of the 
law in his dominions, not to have made a strong impression 
CD my mind. After mentioning the great and striking 
reduction in the total number of prisoners, his Majesty goes 
on to say, ^^ J'aime k croire que Tavenir amenera, sous ce 
rapport, des succ^s encore plus importans, et r^alisera le 
vceu cher k mon cceur de voir I'accumulation de proems 
prevenue par une administration de la justice, tout k la 
fois prompte, exacte et refl^chie ; la suret6 et la propri6t6 
individuelles, en un mot, tous les droits de nos sujets bien- 
aimes, garantis dans tout TEmpire par une justice impar- 
tiale ; enfin ceux k qui en sont confi^s la garde et le main- 
tien des lois prendre pour seuls guides de leurs actions le 
sentiment de leurs devoirs et le respect pour la saintet^ des 
lois, des sermens au trone, et des principes de Phonneur." 

When I had concluded, the Procureur proceeded to state 
that justice demanded of him the acknowledgment that to 
the humane and meritorious exertions of a society, founded 
for the sole purpose of improving the discipline of prisons, 
suggested originally by Howard, and established in imi- 
Ution of a similar institution existing in London, the pri-^ 
Boners were indebted for their present comparatively im- 
proved condition, and for the amelioration of the various 
gaols in the capital. " The same eulogium,'? continued he, 
" should be paid to the Comite de Surveillance Gincrakj 
one of those institutions of the Empress Catherine, which 
that sovereign was for ever devising in behalf of those who, 
from misfortunes, casualties, disease, or poverty, were de- 
prived of all other means of protection. Of course, you 
are aware that the pwn of death was abolished in Russia 
by our Empress Elizabeth." 

VOL. II. 2 G 


I have heard a great deal said on the subject of corporal 
punishment, and on that in particular which is called the 
knout. As there had not been any opportunity of witness- 
ing this species of discipline since my arrival in the capital, 
I should wish to know from yourself in what the punish- 
ment consists, and whether there be any truth in the horrors 
that have been mentioned respecting it. *^ No more truth 
in them than there is in the exaggerated reports of the 
severity and frequency of public whipping, to which negro 
slaves are said to be subjected in the English West India 
Islands, as I have been informed by several persons who 
had been to those colonies.^' Indeed it is but justice to 
admit, was my reply, that when I visited the principal 
West India Islands in 1810, particularly those of Jamaica, 
Antigua, and Barbadoes, I witnessed none of the hor* 
rors said by the abolitionists to be committed upon the 
negro population of those settlements; much less did I 
perceive that excess of cruelty in the species of corporal 
punishment adopted from time, I was almost going to say, 
immemorial, for the purpose of conquering the idle and 
highly vicious disposition of that race. The whipping to 
which they are subjected in public, in virtue of a regular 
sentence, could no more be dispensed with than could 
the naval commanders of England dispense with flogging 
on board their ships. I have sailed with many of those 
gallant officers in almost every climate, and every class of 
vessels, and I know not a better disposed, a more right- 
minded, or good-hearted class of individuals. Being com- 
pelled, by my duties as naval surgeon, to be present at all 
the corporal punishments of magnitude inflicted on any of 
the crew, I can say, that in nine cases out of ten the un- 
pleasing ceremony was as distressing to the feelings of him 
who ordered it, as it was painful to him who was the 
sufferer. But the thing is unavoidable. It need not be 


to frequent as it used to be; and one is glad, for the 
sake of humanity, to hear that of late years corporal pu- 
nishment has not. so often been resorted to. Indeed I 
once served in a ship, on board of which no punishment 
had taken place for a twelvemonth, and yet the vessel was 
in the highest state of discipline ; but the introduction of 
some newly impressed seamen, and a six weeks^ refitting in 
harbour, changed the disposition of the crew in a great 
measure^ and flogging became necessary, more than once, in 
the course of the first month after going to sea, every other 
measure of a milder nature having proved ineffectual 
Still the commander was the same ; his principles of disci- 
pline were unchanged ; his weUi^known benevolence of heart 
was uncorrupted. He was driven to the adoption of seve- 
rity^ and so will many more of his brother officers, as long 
as the British navy shall exist and maintain its pre*eminent 
rank and flourishing condition. The sight of the effect of 
five hundred lashes inflicted on the back of a culprit with 
an instrument which multiplies that number nine times at 
each stroke, and to which I have been a witness when such 
a castigation was inflicted by the sentence of a court mar- 
tial, is really heart-rending ; and next to the taking away 
life, I should consider such a punishment the most dread- 
ful. Can the knout be much worse ? 

** I cannot undertake to discriminate,'^ observed the 
Procureur in reply, " between the corporal punishment 
you have just described, mon cher Ddcteur^ and the knout^ 
but what I know of the latter, is this : — the knout is al- 
ways inflicted puttlidy at St. Petersburgh, and the place 
where that is done, is situated near the end of the Nevskoi 
Prospekt. The fact that you have not had an oppor- 
tunity of seeing it applied, during the four weeks which you 
have been redding among us, shows that it is not of very 
frequent occurrence. It is never inflicted but by virtue of 


a regular sentence from one of the criminal opurts, or other 
authorities, and the executioner (Palatch) on the occasioB 
is always a criminal who is kept a prisoner, but lodged by 
himself somewhere out of town. The culprit stands before 
an upright board, having the figure of -an inverted cone ; 
the upper or broad end of which has three notches, the 
middle to receive the neck, the other two for the arms, 
which are secured by cords ; the legs are fastened to the 
bottom of the board. The upper part of the body, as far 
as the loins, is then stripped of every sort of clothing. 

** The instrument used, and called a knout, consists of a 
stick, or handle, about eighteen inches long, and as thick as 
a walking-stick, at one end of which is fastened a small 
iron ring, attached to which is a twisted thong of lea- 
ther, twice the length of the stick. At the other extremity 
of the thong there is a copper ring through which is pas- 
sed, with a slip-knot, a double strap of leather an inch 
broad near the ring^ and tapering to a point at the floating 
end. This double strap immediately before the punishment 
is to take place, is boiled in milk by which process it swells, 
the edges become everted and sharp, and its substance is 
rendered more compact Of these thongs there is always a 
supply ready, as they are often changed during the ope- 
ration from their becoming too soft, and consequently nearly 
harmless after about a dozen lashes. I am assured that the 
friends of the culprit are often able to mitigate the severity 
of the punishment by giving money to the executioner. 
I was informed by a lady of rank, that in visiting 
the principal prisons, one day, she happened to arrive 
just as a female prisoner who had received the knout was 
returning to the prison, and that upon asking her whether 
the pain endured on the occasion was very severe, the 
unfortunate female replied, that the first stroke took away 
almost all sensation, and that she was scarcely aware after^ 


wards of her rituadoii. It struck me during the only time 
I saw this punishment inflicted, that the executioner must 
acquire considerable dexterity in his calling ; for I remarked 
that he was very exact in measuring the distance of the 
part on which he struck from shoulder to shoulder, leaving 
a number of clear spaces on which he laid his thong after- 
wards on returning back from the farthest shoulder^ so as 
never to miss the place, until at last the whole surface 
presented one uniform mark of severe castigation. This 
species of punishment is not very often resorted to now ; 
and every friend to humanity must wish that it may be 
erased from the new criminal code.*" 

Amen ! responded I ; and be it so in particular with 
regard to the whipping of females. With respect to the 
dexterity of your executioner, I think we could match 
it with that of the boatswain's mate, who generally exe* 
cutes the sentence of flogging on his shipmate so adroitly, 
that a certain ^ven space only shall probably receive two 
or three dozen lashes, the number to which a captain must 
now brait his sentence on board the ship for one day, with- 
out a previous court-martial. The English instrument 
consists of nine twisted cords dT compact hemp, instead of 
a single tapering thong, fastened to a stout handle, eighteen 
inches long, and each has three or more knots on it The 
great art of the boatswain's mate, who knows and does his 
duty, is to shake these nine cords or tails, which arc more 
than two feet long, — keep them quite separate, by holding 
their ends between the fingers of his left hand, — and, while 
with the right hand he grasps the handle of the instrument, 
railing it high above his bead, and somewhat backward, lay, 
if posttble, the whole weight of the nine cords about or a 
little below thb shoulders, in such a manner that each sepa^ 
rate knotted cord shall leave a distinct weal in a narrow 
^Moe. The next lash is laid either above or below this, and 


SO on antil a large surface is completely laid open^ and made 
black and blue. Occa«onaIIy, the awkward or nervous 
mate lashes the unfortunate too low, in whidi case the 
pain is most acute, and has occasionally produced sudden 
fainting. This has called for my professional and offidal 
interference, when the punishment has been suspended ; 
but such instances are very rare, and purely accidental ; 
and either the sufferer himself, or some of the officers pre- 
sent, will warn the mate to strike higher. On the other 
hand, if he be inclined to be too lenient, the voice of the 
captain will recall him to the strict execution of his duty. 
The manner in which the unfortunate culprit is secured, 
after being stripped to his waist, is, with the exception of 
the confinement of the neck, somewhat similar to that de- 
scribed by yourself — ^both his hands and legs being fastened 
to an upright grating placed in the gangway of the upper 
deck. There is, moreover, another species of corporal 
punishment in the British navy, much less severe than the 
preceding ; and which, in my time, I have seen inflicted 
by order of any of the lieutenants on duty. It is vul- 
garly called " starting," or the " rope's end,'' from the 
circumstance of the end of a rope (any part of the loose 
rigging, hallyards, or braces) being employed for the pur- 
pose, and from the further circumstance of the sufferer 
starting at the unwelcome visitation. It is a wholesome 
castigation, particularly for the juvenile offenders. Still 
it is somewhat shocking to see a fellow-creature struck 
in this manner, by order of a second, and through the in- 
strumentality of a third fellow-creature. 

'' Eh bien," observed the Procureur, when I had finished, 
^^ Je vois que cbez vous on a, peut-£tre, moins raison de 
lancer autant de diatribes contre nous, h raison du knout, 
que dans tout autre pays. II faut ^tre de bonne fois. 
Chacune des deux nations a bien de choses k reformer en 
mati^re de legislation criminelle, th^orique et pratique. 


Nous devrions toutes les deux relire avec plus d^attention 
I'ouyrage * Dei Delitti e delle pene' par Beccaria." 

You have made use of the name " Code" just now, Mons. 
le Procureur, in reference to Russia. How is the commis-^ 
sion of laws proceeding in its undertaking, which the pre- 
sent Emperor has been so anxiously urging^ and to which 
he gave fresh animation and energy, by placing Mons* 
Speransky at the head of it, as I was informed the other 
day after I had had the gratification of being introduced to 
that distinguished person, and of seeing him at my lecture 
at the Academy ? 

** That commission, cher Docteury is dissolved ; the ob- 
ject for which it had been formed, and which consisted in 
collating the many thousand statutes on every question of 
criminal and civil law, being completed. But Mons. Spe- 
ransky, whom you have very justly styled a distinguished 
person, and who perhaps enjoys a higher reputation thai;! 
any other statesman in Russia on subjects of legislation, 
has been named member of the Council of the Empire, and 
appointed one of the Secretaries of its Chancelleries for the 
purpose of selecting such of the collated ukases or laws as 
are deemed essential to the safety, prosperity, and amelio- 
ration of the subject, as few in number as possible, and not 
contradictory to each other, with instructions to suggest 
others calculated for the present improved state of the nation, 
ao as to form a criminal code that shall suit all the exigen- 
cies of so vast an Empire. The same important operation is 
about to be accomplished with respect to a code of civil laws ; 
the preparatpry labours to form which have been executed 
by the second section of the private chancellerie of the Em- 
peror, by which all the civil laws in existence in Russia 
were collected, under the direction of another eminent 
statesman, Mons. Balouhiansky, Secretaire d^Etat^ the 
same who had the honour of giving instructions to his pre- 
sent Majesty, on legislation and the science of government, 


as part of his education when Grand-duke.^ Russia is 
on the eve of presenting a curious and interesting spectacle 
to the other nations of Europe ; that of a young soveragn 
of Russia giving to fifty-three millions of subjects, in pro- 
bably less than the first dx years of his reign, written 
volumes of criminal and civil laws, of which the inviolability 
of person and property is to form one of the main bases." 

I thanked my learned Procureur most sincerely, and 
with the friend who had introduced me to him, walked 
home along the Nevskoi Prospekt^ which I found illumi- 
nated on the occasion of the capture of Tiflis, the news of 
which had arrived that morning. I cannot say that I 
thought the appearance of the streets very mugnificent, 
from the addition of a number of flat earthem vessels, con- 
taining melted tallow, with large wicks burning in them, 
placed at the distance of a few paces along the margin ot the 
trottoirs. Of three public illuminations that took place 
during my stay at St. Petersburgh, the display of rejoicing 
in that way was not better than the one j ust described. With- 
out these additional flambeaux, the streets are tolerably 
well lighted on ordinary nights ; but how magnificent the 
Nevskoi ProspeUt would appear lighted with gas! An 
oil-gas company tried the experiment some short time ago^ 
but failed, and tHe money was advertised ready to be 
returned to the shareholders, during my stay at St. Pe- 
tersburgh. The inundation of 18^ had destroyed the 

* I have since learned that the collection of the existing civil l^ws 
having been completed in the space of two years, the Emperor has 
named a special committee^ under the presidency of Piince Dolgo- 
rouky, and with the assistance of Mons. Balouhiansky himselfi to 
whom he has ordered that collection^ classed according to subjects, to 
be submitted, with instructions to examine them separately; and 
afterwards to lay before his Majesty their general, and collective opi* 
nion on the whole, in order that it may be adopted as the basis of a 
civil code. 


pipes already laid in several parts of the town, and caused 
a severe loss to the company. At present the only place 
lighted with gas (oil gas) is the Etat Major ; but there, 
although the machine, which is by Taylor and Martineau, 
is under the care of an Englishman, I found the smell quite 
overpowering, and I understand it is nearly always so. 

And pray, my dear Sir, said I to my friend, as we 

were walking leisurely along that beautiful street, what 

may be the object of that small wooden house, like one of 

the moveable turnpike-lodges in England, with a door in 

front, and a small window in each side, painted with wide 

stripes, red, black, and white, which I see yonder, and in* 

deed at the comer of every principal street f And what may 

be the meaning of that loud and prolonged cry, O^he . . . ? 

-— '* Those wooden-houses are the dwellings (sieja) of the 

street-keepers, or police battle-axe-men (boodschniks), so 

called, because they are armed with a long battle>axe, which 

they invariably hold in their hands when outside of their 

w(X)den huts. The latter may be compared to a sentry-box, 

except that it is closed with a door in front, is much larger, 

and contains many conveniences within, particularly a fire. 

I say sentry-box, because, in fact, those street-keepers are 

ordered to keep sentinels in front of it, either standing or 

sitting, watching over the tranquillity and security of the 

district or streets to which they belong. These guardians 

are a modem invention of the police, and are composed of old 

yet hale retired veteran soldiers, as you may see, from the 

colour of their costume, and round cap with a red band. 

One of their duties also is to go round with any new ukase 

of the Emperor from house to house, to make the master of 

each acquainted with it, and obtain an acknowledgment in 

writing of his having read it, and taken cognizance of its 

import. It is thus that new laws are quietly promulgated 

throughout the capital. The cry you have heard is their 

watch-cry, by which they evince their own vigilance, and 


call for a corresponding token of it from the nearest battle- 
axe-man ; it is like the ^ AlPs well !^ that breaks upon the 
stillness of the night in an English harbour, from the sen- 
tinel that parades the sohtary deck, each time that the bell 
strikes the half hour .'*''• 

We had now reached part of the Admiralty Square, in 
front of the Winter Palace, on our way to visit the Countess 
Z— — , on the Great Quay, who occasionally receives 
her friends in the evening, when I noticed a blazing fire in 
the centre, with several izvostchicks round it, and a great 
number of equipages in waiting before the entrance of the 

palace. " That is a pavilion of iron," said Prince H j 

who accompanied me, ^' supported by pillars of the same 
metal, resting upon a circular basement of granite, within 
which, at this severe season, a large fire is kept ; the wind 
being kept ofi^, as you may perceive, by a moveable circular 
shutter. The people assembled round it are the ser- 
vants, coachmen, and others belonging to persons who are 
on a visit at the Imperial palace ; and you must have no- 
ticed two similar establishments in front of the Great 
Opera, when you went thither the other night? There 
are several such in different parts of St. Petersburgh. 
Previously to the erection of these pavilions, many of that 
unfortunate class of people were frozen to death, while 
waiting in the street. The Government, attentive to the 
lives of its subjects, devised this contrivance ; and, to pie^ 
vent further accidents, interdicts all performances at the 
theatres, if the frost be unusually severe.'^ 

Foreigners must admit, that there are few great cities 
in which the pbHce is executed with more strictness than 
in St. Petersburgh ; or its vigilance for the public safety 
carried to a greater degree. " In proportion to the bulk, 
extent, Und population of St. Petersburgh,'' observes 
Storch, who resided a long while in that city, " the pubhc 
security is as great as any where. Robberies and murder 



are so seldom heard of, that all thoughts of danger are en- 
tirely banished. Accordingly, people walk alone, without 
any Weapon or attendance, at all hours of the' night, along 
the streets, and even in the remotest, most unfrequented, 
and even uninhabited parts of the town, harmless. This 
fact, extraordinary under such circumstances, is, however, 
not so much the consequence of a well-organized and vigi- 
lant police, as the effect of the good-tempered national 
character. The common Russian, if not corrupted by a 
kmg stay in the capital, seduced by the propensity to 
drink, or pressed by extreme want, is seldom disposed to 
excesses of that nature.^' There is in every district, or 
Kvartal, a Maison de Police, They are large and 
showy buildings, but not so much decorated as public 
buildings are in general, ill the capital. From the centre 
rises a wooden turret, having two flag-masts. At the top 
of this tower a watch is constantly kept by one or two 
men, to denounce any fire that they may discover in any 
part of the city, by means of flags in the day-time, and by 
a combination of three lamps at night. On the side next 
to the street, an open arcade forms part of the basement 
story, containing, always ready for use, from four to five 
fire-engines, with the necessary number of quick and vi- 
gorous horses. The agent of the police, who resides in 
each district-house, has an office, with several persons em- 
ployed under him. He watches over the conduct and be- 
haviour of the inhabitants of liis district, preserves order 
and tranquillity in his quarter, or section, and can decide 
in cases of petty quarrels, if the parties are agreeable td 
such a course, as sometimes happens at the police-offices in 
Ijondon. The Court-police is called the Ouprava. There 
is a lock-up house, and, in some cases, an hospital attached 
to these police stations. 

The arrangements made in cases of fire, are both simple 
and effectual. The whole establishment is under the control 


of the police, at whose respective houses, the fire-engines, 
built exactly on the English plan, are kept in constant 
readiness. The number of these is considerable^ and the 
firemen form a corps trained and marshalled like a regi« 
ment, as is the case with the Pompiers in Paris. A uni- 
form process is followed in every case of fire ; and in order 
to promote the proper execution of the measures adopted 
on such occasions, both by day and by night ; as well as to 
ensure dispatch, as soon as the watchman placed upon any 
of the towers has discovered a fire, and, by the stipulated 
signals, has indicated the district in which it is raging, the 
fire-engines start from every station in the city, and pro^ 
ceed to the spot in a given number of nnnutes, which is 
regulated for every station in proportion to the distance at 
which it may happen to be from the fire; all which regu- 
lations are clearly laid down in a tabular form, with the 
day and night telegraph's signals annexed to it. Each of 
the police-houses sends two fire-engines, with a third car- 
riage, which conveys the firemen, four other carriages, 
loaded with large tanks of water, and a fifth, having the 
fire-ladder and escapes. On the least alarm of fire, the 
Superintendent, (brand-major,) the Grand Master, and 
Masters of the Police, the Commandant de la Place, and 
the Governor-general, repair to the spot. 

A very recent ukase of the Emperor has authoriased 
the establishment of a Fire Insurance Company in St. 
Petersburgh, modelled after the plan of that of the Phoe* 
nix Fire-office in England. It is curious that until the 
foundation of the said company, houses in St. Peters- 
burgh were insured at the above-mentioned London Fire- 
ofiice, by which a large sum of money was sent out of the 
empire.* I am not certain whether in following their par«it 
office they have selected the best model for an institution 
of this description in St. Petersburgh ; but this I know. 


that the manner of effecting insurances in it is not pre- 
cisely the same as that followed more generally in England. 
This establishment being without competition for the pre- 
sent, must necessarily succeed, and ultimately prove very 
lucrative to the subscribers.* The Emperor has ordained 
that the statutes of the company shall be published through. 
out Russia, and has secured to it the exclusive privileges 
granted for the space of twenty years, and exempted 
it from all taxes, except a fine of twenty-five kopeeks 
(paper) Sjd upon every thousand roubles insured. The 
policies of insurance are also declared to be the legal repre* 
sentatives of real and substantial property insured, and as 
such they are to be received in courts and at the banks. This 
company has issued shares to the amount of ten millions of 
roubles, each share being for one thousand roubles. None 
but subscribers virtually and permanently re^dent in Rus- 
sia were admitted to take shares, and no distinction what* 
ever was made as to rank or condition in society with re- 
gard to shareholders. The founders reserved to themselves 
1900 shares, and 8100 were sent into the market ; of the lat- 
ter, SOOO were, for such persons as took from 101 and SOO 
shares at one time ; 3000 for those who took from 51 to 100 
shares ; and SlOO to those whose number of shares at any 
time did not extend beyond 51. Twenty per cent, was 
paid at once on the subscribed number of shares ; and the 
profits were to be equally divided among all the sharehold- 
ers. Admiral Mordvinoff, Count Litta, Count Potocki, 
and Baron Stieglitz, are some of the persons who set this 

* Tbe result of six months' experience since my notes of this com- 
pany were written, or rather extracted from their printed prospectus 
at Si. Petersburgh, has proved the correctness of my prediction. 
Shares of 1000 roubles, on which a first deposit of 200 roubles only 
has been paid, were commonly sold in the market, at the end of May 
last, for 675 roubles. 


useful company on foot, and are likely to reap great benefit 
from their undertaking. 

Another great blessing for which travellers to St. Peters- 
burgh are^ in a utuinner, indebted to the system of police in 
that capital, is the total, or nearly total, absence of beggars 
from the streets. Neither old, infirm, diseased, nor deform^ 
ed people, are permitted to awaken the oommisieration of 
passengers, by exciting disgust or harrowing up their feel- 
ings. The really poor, and those incapable of earning 
their bread, are provided for in the poor-house, which is 
reported to be upon an excellent plan. 

But the guardian of public order and public safety in St. 
Fetersburgh, whose power is paramount to that of every 
local authority in the place, is the General and Military 
Grovernor (at this moment, General-Adjutant Paul Vassi- 
lievitch Kutusoff.) He is, in reality, the first authority of 
the city. Ah organ of the Executive Government, without 
being a judge, he superintends the execution of the laws in 
all public offices and courts within his jurisdiction. Com* 
Inning within himself the civil and military authority, he 
receives the reports of the Commandant de la PiacCy the 
Great Master of the Police, the Civil Governor, and Vice 
Grovernor. He takes his seat at all general assemblies of 
the Senate, and at the sittings of its various departments, 
whenever a cause is to be tried before it which has any re- 
ference to his own jurisdiction : he is the Emperor'^s Advo- 
cate, and votes like the other members of that body. Lastly, 
he is eX'Offido the President of the scientific Societies, Com- 
missions, and Councils, acting under special appointment 
in his government ; and it is at his office that foreigners 
apply for permission to reside in, or depart from the capital. 

Happening one day to converse with one of the most 
esteemed statistical writers in Russia at the table of a mu- 
tual acquaintance, I took an opportunity of asking him 


whether there had not been a general census, and survey of 
the lands of the empire, as well as a dinombrement of the in- 
habitants into classes, subsequent to the latest publications 
on that subject. I had been told that such statistical opera- 
tions in Russia are ordained to take place every ten years ; 
and I naturally felt curious to compare, in those points of 
view, the present with the previous state of that Empire. 
The previous information I obtained on this occasion I put 
together in the following miscellaneous manner. 

The extent of the Russian Empire, at the death of its foun- 
der, in 1725, was 280,000 square geographical milies. In 1 820, 
it was found to be 340,000. Of this extent, 180,000,000 
square dessia tines* are occupied by forests. The surface 
of Russia in Europe, is equal to 405,000,000 of dessi- 
atines ; and of these, 62,000,000 are arable, with 18,000,000 
of peasants engaged in the culture of them, who sow about 
60,000,000 of tchetverts of grain annually, and reap more 
that 300,000,000 of tchetverts in the same space of time.f 
With respect to the Government revenue, and its military 
and maritime force, I have already stated elsewhere, that 
the former is computed at 450,000,000 of roubles (paper). 
In 1818, the regular army was 1,000,000, and cost one 
hundred and fifty millions yearly. Previously to the war 
with Turkey, it was jeduced one-third ; but whether it 
continues to be thus diminished, I have it not in my 
power to say. The expenses of the navy amount to 
£4,000,000 of roubles, and they have in commission twenty- 
five sail of the line, thirty frigates, nine hundred small ves- 
sels, and craft of every description, with 80,000 seamen of 
all classes and ranks. According to my subsequent infor- 
mation, the census of 1818 appears to have furnished the 

* An agrarian dessiatine is = 3200 square sajenes^ ;= 22^400 square 
English feet. 
f See Appendix. 


following data in reference to nearly 48,000,000 of subjects 
in the empire, exclusive of the population of Finland, Bes- 
sarabia, and the New Kingdom of Poland. 

f^ Feasants and labourers 36,000,000 

Merchants .... 120,000 

Bourgeois 1,800,000 

Raztnostchicks, Hawkers who pay"^ 

taxes, Yemstchicks, and Artificers > 1,500,000 

employed in manufactories . . J 

Ecclesiastics 216,000 

Nobles 225,000 

Employed in subaltern ranks . 500,000 

Troops 1,000,000 

Nomade nations .... 1,500,000 

Total 42,861,000 

In the ten years that had elapsed previous to the last 
census, the number of births had exceeded that of deaths 
by 600,000 annually. In the above population it is found 

The proportion of males to females is as . 44 to 40 
The nuipber of births to the general popu- 1 i t 05 

lation . . i 

Number of deaths to the general popula- 1 1 |. 40 

tion . . . . ) 

Number of marriages to the total number! ^ tn loo 

of inhabitants . . • . ) 

The number of births to that of deaths is as 16 to 10 

Hence, in Russia, the number of males is more consider- 
able than that of females ; whereas in France, the propor 


tion of men to women is as 88 to 34, and in London SO to 
34 : but this excess of males over the female births in Rus- 
sia, is compensated by the inferior number of deaths occur- 
ing among the latter within any given period ; so that the 
balance between the two sexes is, at the end, nearly what it - 
is in every other part of Europe. The proportions, how- 
ever, respecting the number of births and deaths, are evi- 
dently too favourable, compared to that of other countries, 
and pest only on the authority of Weydemeyer ; but if we 
assume the total number of mankind, given by Maltebrun, 
at 700,000,000, to be correctly stated, and the. average num-» 
ber of deaths to the living all over the world, according to 
the same authority, to be 1 in 33, while that of the births is 
1 in ^^, the following will be the perpetual changes that 
must take place in the relative numbers of 53,000,000 of 
pec^le who form the population of Russia in Europe and 
Asia, including Finland, Bessarabia, and the New Kingdom 
of Poland. 

Inone Yaar. 

Ob« Day. 



No. of births to the living 





No. of deaths to the living 





It must be admitted, at the same time, that cases of 
longevity are not only much more common, but also more 
extraordinary in respect to a greater duration yi Russia, 
than in any other part of Europe ; thus, from the Report of 
the Holy Synod, published in 1827, it appears that there 
were living in 1825, among those who professed the Greco- 
Russian religion throughout the empire, not fewer than 
848 males who were 100 and more years old ; among whom, 
SSt had passed the age of 120, 4 were between 125 and 180, 
and 4 others between 130 and 135 years of age. The Ga- 
zette of the Royal Academy published, in the month of Ja- 
nuary of the present year, a statement of the progress of the 

VOL. II. 2 H 


population ia Russia, as far as it concerns tboee who profess 
the Greco-Russian religion, in the course of 1 8S6. This do- 
cument contains results still more extraordinary ; for out of 
606,881 males who died that year^ S785 had passed the 
age of 90 years; 1482 that of 95; and 818 that of 100. 
Among the latter, 88 were more thxm 115 years of age ; 24 
more than 120 ; 7 more than 126 ; and one was 160 years 
old at his death ! 

Chance brought me one day in company with a learned 
and pious archimandrite of the Greco-Russian Church, to 
whom I took the liberty <^ addressing the foUowingquestion, 
with respect to the Ruisdan Calendar. What substantial 
reason have you for continuing to use the Julian Calendar, 
which is so notoriously at variance with the true, or adar 
tinfe, instead of the Gregorian^ or new style ? The worthy 
monk could assign none. He admitted that the retaining of 
the old style on their part was not defensible on astronomical 
or physical grounds ; and that the only reasons that could 
be urged in favour of their adherence to that style were, 
first, that it had now been used for the space of several 
centuries, and ever since the establishment of the Greek 
Church ; secondly, that the Greek Church was averse to 
admitting an innovation proposed by one of the pretend- 
ed heads of the church of Christ, whose authority the 
Greeks did not acknowledge; and thirdly, that it would 
be a difficult task indeed to persuade the illiterate Russian 
that the same Saint's name, which now occurs on a particu- 
lar day of the month, could occur twelve days later. But 
supposing such reasons, I observed to him, to be in reality, 
what they are not, plausible and fair ; it was evident that 
they could not be put in competition with the great incon- 
venience which manifestly resulted from that practice in 
their public and commercial intercourse with other nations, 
as the experience of every pasnng day fully proved. It 


is to be hoped that the growing intelligence of your peo- 
ple will eyentuallj correct this evil. 

One of the highest gratifications I experienced while at 
St. Petersburgh, was doubtlessly the intercourse which I 
had an opportunity of carrying on with persons distin- 
guished for their talents and extent of information, par- 
ticalarly on subjects connected with their own. country. 
The readiness with which they communicated 'such par- 
ticulars, and the good nature with which they received any 
observations which their remarks might be calculated to 
elicit, were aUke conspicuous. This was particularly the 
case with President , whom I visited repeatedly, 

and to whom I had given a word or two of medical ad* 
vice. One morning he entered with me on the so often 
debated question of Russian ^rvage, on which subject 
be complained that most foreign writers had betrayed great 
Ignorance. ^* D^abord,'' said he, '^ je pourrais commencer 
p«r une proposition qui est irrefragable : si cesys(eme i^ait 
vrairaent mauvais par lui-mSme et ne pouvait exister, il ne 
serait exists depuis quatre sidles. Or il existe depuis 
quatre si^es, par consequent il ne saurait 6tre mauvais.^ 
I expressed my disinclination to being persuaded by such a 
kind of syllogism. 

^' Eh bien !** he then added, ^^ I shall not rest my 
argument on this logical induction ; I will explain to you 
the system itself and prove that it is, in practice, the best 
that could be adopted for this country. The serfs are a 
remnant of the feudal system of the Germans. The Rus- 
sians cannot be accused, at all events, of being either the 
inventors or the importers of that system. The serfs aie 
declared by it to form part of the glebe, and we are the 
propnetors of that glebe ; they are therefore equally in- 
alienable with the latter ; they can only be made over to 
another as part of the estate : serfs only are not sold in 

2 H 3 


Ritsna with the consent of the law, as slayes are sold in the 
West Indies, and in that free Republic, par excellence^, the 
United States of America. Hence I am entitled to say 
that our serf is not in a real state of bondage. As part of 
my estate, my own serfs^ (and the President is known to 
have a very large number,) ** have a right to be albwed to 
cultivate three days in the week on their own account, that 
portion of my estate which the law has fixed for, and what 
it bids me give them. During the other three days in the 
week, they are to work for me and cultivate my land* 
What fairer proportion than this could be devised ? Are 
your labourers in England, in regard to the tenants of land, 
and the tenants in regard to landlords, placed in more fa- 
vourable circumstances, either by law or covenants ? Our 
serfs, should they prefer it, may at once become the real 
farmers of the land, by agreeing to give us an annual sum 
previously settled, and which cannot possibly be extrava- 
gant, in as much as the law has determined the maximum 
of what land is to produce to the owner. Under such an 
arrangement, the most we get from the serfs is froin twenty 
to twenty-five roubles a-head. This latter alternative they 
invariably prefer, nor does the proprietor ever refuse to 
comply with it : since the other mode wovdd require agents, 
bailiffs, and collectors, to look after the interest of their 
masters, thereby entailing on them a greater expense. By 
the latter arrangement, we know precisely our income, the 
rents or contributions being regularly paid to our agents, 
who meet to receive them once a-year at Moscow. If by 
means of this method the serf succeeds in accumulating 
money enough to ransom himself, he may do so, and the 
proprietor, though he has the power, is seldom found to 
have the inclination to refuse it. Sometimes our peasants 
prefer turning their money into the channel of trade, and 


obtain pennisaion, on paying a bonus to their master, 
of going aujTvrhere ; stipulating at the same time for the 
payment of a yearly sum generally trifling, during their ab- 
sence. Under these circumstances the serf is allowed by the 
laws of Russia the full benefit of the passport granted him 
by his master, being placed by that document under the 
same protection which his master would enjoy in any part 
of the empire. Thus many of the tradesmen and artisans 
settled in towns or cities are serfs, who pay their contribu- 
tions, according to certain stipulations, from year to year, 
in proportion to what they gain. You will admit, there- 
fore, my dear Doctor, that as far as interest is concerned, 
our serfs are not very badly treated. 

*^With respect to corporal punishment to which they are 
liable, and which the master, or his agents, have the power 
of inflicting, much misrepresentation has gone abroad. 
Every proprietor of land has certainly the right to punish 
a refractory, criminal, or vicious serf, by having him flogged 
on the back ; but he is also responiuble to the Crown for 
the consequences that may attend this correction, whether 
ordered by himself or his deputy. Excess of punishment 
can only take place when the latter, like the overseer of a 
plantation in the West Indies, is a passionate or ill-minded 
person. The masters themselves, belonging as they do to the 
aristocracy, (and no other can hold serfs,) and possessing 
feelings, as well as education, in common with those of their 
brethren in other parts of Europe, are not likely to commit 
wanton cruelties, aind no example, indeed, can be cited of 
such having been committed in any part of Russia Proper; 
for I do not allude to the same system as it prevails in 
Poland. Of every excess of, or unjust punishment, the 
serf has the right of complaining to the police ; and the 
knowledge of tliis fact alone would be sufficient to restrain 


even the most inhuman.* Where death has followed 
the infliction of punishment, a coroner's inquest, (to use 
an expression which is familiar to you,) takes place nearly 
in the same manner as in England, and the result of the 
inquiry is sent to the Government, which acts upon it ac- 
cordingly .-|- Oppression is guarded against by the liberty 
which serfs have of applying for redress to the nearest tri- 
bunal ; and as the inhabitant serfs, or peasants, of every 
village, are governed by the elder, (Starosta) who is dected 
by deputies, and chosen from among themselves by a majo« 
rity, with the unanimous concurrence of the inhabitants, it 
follows that the individual interests and personal rights of 
each member of the community are under the watchful pro- 
tection, as it were, of the wisest, and consequently, the most 
powerful of their own caste. The administrative r^;ula- 
tions of these chiefs of the community of serfs, or peasants, 
no master dares to oppose ; and thus a body of men bonded 
to the land, the produce of which they share with its lords, 
enjoy the advantage of a patriarchal, or democratic, munid^ 
pality with the consent, and even encouragement of their 

* Add to this^ that of late years the infliction of punishment is be- 
come less frequent from two reasons. Ist. The more humane dispo- 
sition of the subordinate agents^ which progressive civilization has 
naturally given rise to. Sdly. The greater degree of protection 
afforded to the peasants by the presence of an agent of the dvil 
power in every^ even the smallest^ village in Russia. 

f On a recent occasion^ the Emperor having been informed that 
some young officers^ in one of the provinces^ had been guilty of exces- 
ses towards their peasants ; and that the remonstrances of the Go- 
vemor, made in consequence of the complaints of the peasants^ had 
proved useless, ordered the Tribunal of Tutelage to take the ma- 
nagement of the estates into its own hands, allowing the i»t>pri- 
etors the full benefit of their produce, but without suffering them 
to interfere with their administration, until they evinced a more 
humane disposition, and a greater control ver their passions. 


^^ As to the manner in which our serfs, or peasants, are 
lodged^ fed, and clothed, I will yenture to assert, that in no 
country in the world are the peasantry better treated. 
Their food is notoriously, not only better, but in much 
greater quantity than is allowed to any persons of their 
class in Europe, or than what the labourers in England 
can get.'' I admitted, that it had been stated to me, that 
a nobleman who had, with great honour, represented the 
British Sovereign at the Court of Catherine, in whose 
suite he had visited most parts of Russia, had asserted as 
much in favour of the system of treatment of the peasants 
in that country, whom he found better fed, better lodged, 
and happier than in any other part of Europe. Since my 
return to England, I have ascertained, in the course of one 
of the interviews with which the nobleman to whc»n I 
allude occasionally honours me, that his opinion on this sub* 
ject had been correctly represented, and that he continues 

to entertain it unchanged. Those who know Lord , 

will readily see the justice of relying on his report, and. 
consequently, on the assertions advanced by the President 
himself. On this point, I understand, that more improve* 
ments have even taken place, since the period alluded to 
by the nobleman in question. 

^* Two great public advantages/' continued the Presi-^ 
dent, *' must now be mentioned, which accrue to the nation 
from the system of peasantry, as constituted at present in 
Russia. The first is the facility which it affords of rais- 
ing a body of soldiers in case of invasion, or recruiting 
the standing army. The second is, the opportunity it 
offers to Government of collecting the direct or property 
tax, on which a great part of its revenue depends, with* 
out the necessity of that complicated machinery, which 
even in England, and much more in France, is rendered 
indispensable fbr collecting taxes, and which consumes a 


great part of their produce, to the detriment of the pub- 
lic, who are taxed to a greater extent in order to meet 
that exigency. I will explain myself on both these points: 
every person entitled by his station in society to possess 
land, and consequently peasants, must of necessity be 
known to Government ; and the number of peasants on his 
estate must be equally notorious. When Government, 
therefore, stands in need of recruits for the army, or is 
compelled, as was the case on a recent memorable occasion, 
to call forth its subjects to repel an unjust invader, the 
proper authorities have only to address a copy of the 
Imperial rescript, or its import, to every such person, 
desiring him to send to a particular spot or rendezvous, 
and, by a certain time» properly equipped, a quota of 
peasants of a given age and height, in proportion to 
the total number of those whom he is known to employ. 
These orders being despatched all over the Empire, 
or only through certain Governments according to cir- 
cumstances, are immediately attended to, as the land 
proprietors are responsible to the Sovereign for their ex- 
ecution; so that by a given time the dep6ts are found 
to fill without interruption, with the specified number 
of men, either properly equipped, or with the sum of 
from sixty to eighty roubles, in lieu of equipment, which 
is then provided by Government. The peasants settle 
among themselves who are to march to the depStSy with- 
out any interference on the part either of Government 
or their masters ; the latter only taking care to see that 
heir quota of men reaches its destination in safety, in 
order that they may obtain an acknowledgment in writing 
of having complied with the will , of their Sovereign. 
Those on whom the choice has fallen, may, if they can 
obtain it, send a substitute of the same age and height; 
and the enormous sums paid in some instances for a sub- 


stitute, by the peasants or serfs, who by economy have 
amassed wealth, are a proof of what I before advanced, 
that our serfs are, in their situation, as comfortable as pos- 
sible, or they would be glad to be emancipated from their 
bondage, by going into the army, since every serf becomes 
ipio facto free, the moment he assumes the military livery 
of his Sovereign.* Looking at this system of forming 
an army in a military point of view only» mark what supe- 
riority it bears over the recruiting plan of England, or the 
conscription of France, since according to both those me- 
thods there must be not only a tedious delay, but what 
is still worse, a great expenditure of money : whereas, with 
us, there can be neither to the Grovernment. It may be 
said, advantages such as these, which seem prima faeie^ 
to be wholly on the side of the Government, cannot be 
favourable to the subject or land proprietors; but the 
thing is not so in reality. The very dependence, as it 
were, on the latter, which Grovernment acknowledges by 
its appeal to them to surrender a portion of their servants 
with a view of forming or strengthening the standing army, 
on which so mainly depends an absolute monarchy, gives 
a correspondent degree of independence to the aristocracy or 
land-owners, (they being, in fact, one and the same thing,) 
and makes of them, as it were, a counterpoise against any 
possible overbearing on the part of the monarch, sup- 
posing any such to exist. This balancing of the two 
highest powers, when there is not a tiers^etat^ or body of 
commoners, keeps this vast Empire together, and consti- 
tutes its strength. It strips the absolute form of our 
Government of that despotism which the Sovereigns of 

* Lord St. H aflsored me that in one case^ in particular, he 

had known a oommon serf to pay 100, and even 150/. sterling for a 


Turkey and Persia exercise undisturbed^ and converts it into 
a kind of monarcho-oUgarchic administration, perfectly cal- 
culated to render the people happy. A French monarch, 
with his present charter, may, in violation of all engage- 
ments, and in opposition to the general voice (^his subjects, 
were he so inclined, maintain in power a bad minister, the 
instrument of mischief and oppression ! Such a minister 
and his authority may the Sovereign thrust for ever forward, 
in order to cover himself, as with an ample shidd, with the 
responsibility of his servant, that he may turn a deaf ear 
to the malecontents, the injured, or the oppressed. With 
us the thing is, and must necessarily be very different. An 
Emperor of Russia is alone accountable for his own acts ; 
he has no minister, whose official responsibility and coun- 
cils may be said to shield the head of the Government; 
nor can he support his executive servant against the de- 
cided and respectful remonstrances of the aristocracy, if 
that servant be wicked and unpopular. Happily for our 
country, the necessity of such a state of political opposition 
between the Sovereign and his nobles is not likely to occur 
at present. 

'^ With regard to the second great public advantage 
which I mentioned to you as arising from the existing sys- 
tem of Russian peasantry ; it cannot be denied that wh^ 
the ruling authorities of the State have only to address 
themselves to a well-known, and not very large number 
of responsible land-proprietors for their quota of oontrip 
butions, which are ordered to be paid into the Imperial 
treasury — the total sum required will not only oome in 
regularly, but entire and with a precision of calculation 
which no financier can anticipate under any other form 
of administration, as Milord Goderich, or Mons. Vansittart 
might readily explain to you. The contributions of sub- 
jects possessing land, and consequently bound to uphold 


the (Toyernment which defends their property, go direct 
into the coffers of the Crown. The plan of taxes is in 
itself simple, and reduced to what in Enghind would be 
called a property«tax. Instead of long and complicated 
schedules being devised and sent round to each housey 
pointing out a great many items of taxation to be attended 
to and paid for, which require, as I have been informed 
by some of my countrymen who were resident housekeepers 
in England, long printed explanations in order to be un- 
derstood : each landowner is called upon to contribute a 
tenth part of the income he derives from his peasants or 
serfs. Thus the number of the latter on each estate being 
known, the amount of money which Government expects 
and can depend upon from each of us is equally, and at 
the same time ascertained.^ 

These observations had made a strong impression on 
my mind ; the more so, as I noted them down a very 
short time after the interview. Still there were points on 
which I felt that more information was required ; and as 
circumstances prevented me, ever after, from again seeing 
the President, I took the opportunity of my frequently 

meeting Governor in my professional capacity, to 

obtain from him further particulars. The Governor bad 
been for some time at the head of the administration of a 
large and fertile province in the South, and was also well 
versed in miUtary matters. My object more especially was to 
ascertain the details referable to the recruiting system men- 
tioned by the President, and also to ask a question or two 
respecting military punishments. On the first point Go- 
vernor —» informed me that when any considerable re* 
cruitingfor the army is to take place, three peasants or serfs 
are claimed out of every 500, whom the proprietor sends to 
the de6pty with a sum of sixty roubles for each, instead of 

476 Levying op troops. 

equipment. These serfs, as I had been told before, be- 
come free from that moment, their allegiance to their (dd 
master being broken on entering the service of the master 
of aU. *^ But let us suppose a case," observed I, at this part 
of the conversation, ** in which there are not 500 peasants 
on the estate, how is the military quota ascertained and 
carried into effect, without applying to several petty pro- 
prietors?** " In all such cases," replied the Governor, " the 
representative of the noblesse for the district takes care 
to see that those proprietors club together and provide 
the quota of men by drawing lots — the one on whom it 
falls to part with his serfs, receiving in lieu from the rest 
a compensation in money, which amounts to about 100 
roubles for each serf. It is always to the representative of 
the nobles, that the Crown looks for the execution of the 
order which calls for a certain number of men for the army.^ 
Does it then follow, from this system of levying troops, I 
asked the Governor, that the land proprietor, from whose 
estate a certain number of serfs have been thus subtracted, 
experiences a corresponding defalcation in his rental, since 
the latter is said to depend on the number of serfs liv- 
ing on the estate? ''Not so: when the proprietor has 
agreed with his serfs generally to have a certain annual 
sum paid to him on the whole of his estates, which he has 
given up to them to work on their own account, that sum 
must be furnished by those of the serfs that remain ; and 
so it is with regard to the amount required for the equip- 
ment and food for one year, of the men drawn for the 
army, which the whole community of peasants arrange 
to pay for among themselves.'" Has it been observed. 
Monsieur le Gouverneur, that the serfs or peasants drawn 
for the army have often tendered a substitute, or a sum 
of money sufficient to procure one ? '' Such has, in ge- 
neral, been the case ; but in the present levy now in pro- 
gress, (1827), few serfs indeed have preferred paying the 


statute sum for a substitute. They almost all go to the 
dep6ts when drawn.'' This, then, I remarked, bespeaks 
either a great inclination to serve in the army as at present 
constituted, or A diminution of wealth among the peasants ? 
*' I am not able to say to what cause it is to be ascribed. 

You were the other day asking Greneral B , whether 

the Russian soldier was subjected to any corporal punish- 
ment ; and some interruption which supervened to your 
conversation, prevented that officer from giviiig you the 
information you required. I think I can answer your 
question in a few words. The Russian soldier receives, at 
the command of any of his superior officers, for any crime 
which is not of sufficient importance to be sent to a 
military court, a number of coups de batons on his back, 
stripped to his shirt. The stick used is not so large as the 
one so freely employed by every Austrian corporal or 
Serjeant^ without which, indeed, those sub-officers never 
appear in or out of the barracks. The Russian soldier, 
who is ordered to be so punished, stands to receive his 
number without being tied up in any way, or being placed 
against any thing. He puts one of his feet forward, and 
keeps his place during the infliction of this punishment 
without moving or uttering a lamentation, and when tired 
of his position, he simply changes the other foot forward. 
The punishment of passing between the verges (the hal- 
berds) is still in force in the Russian army."" 

That extraordinary military revolt which marked the 
^ of December, 1825,* and threw the -capital into the 
highest state of ferment and alarm, was still too fresh in 
the memoiy of every class of society not to be often men- 
tioned and reverted to in my presence during my stay at 

* To avoid confusioii^ the rest of the dates mentioned in the suc- 
ceeding narration, are given according to our own ityky generally 
called the New, Style. Here is an illustration of the inconvenience 
arising from the use of two different calendars among the civilized 
nations of Europe. ^ 


St. Petersburgh. On that day Nicholas, who had only 
a few hours before declared, in a solemn manifesto pub- 
lished at the Imperial Residence, that he had ascended 
the throne of his brother at the solicitation of Constantine 
himself, and agreeably to the laws which regulate the 
order of succession, was called upon to display a firmness 
of character which at once showed that he was worthy 
to reign. The history of that day, of hopes and fears, and 
of the events which led to it and followed after, is briefly 
told. On the 9th of December, 1825, the intelligence of 
the death of Alexander, at Taganrog, having reached the 
capital of the Empire, the Grand-duke Nicholas, without 
losing an instant, proceeded to take the oath of allegiance 
and fidelity to the lawful successor of that Sovereign, Con- 
stantine Cesarevitch, his elder brother, then resident at 
Warsaw. This solemn ceremony had scarcely been ac- 
complished, when the Council of .the Empire apprised the 
Grand-duke that a sealed packet had been confided to their 
custody on the £7th of October, 18^, by the late Em- 
peror, on the outside of which were written in his own 
hand-writing, the following instructions : *^ Garder au con- 
seil de VEmpire jusqu^^ ce que j 'en ordonne autrement; 
mais dans le cas ou je viendrais k mourir ouvrir ce paquet 
en stance extraordinaire avant de proc^er k tout autre 
acte ;'^ and that in obeying the latter part of the Sove- 
reign's will, the Council had discovered that the packet 
contained a letter from the Grand-duke Constantine, dated 
the 26tb of January, 1822, addressed to the late Emperor, 
in which His Imperial Highness renounces his right of 
succession to the throne ; and a manifesto of the 28th of 
August, 1828, signed by Alexander, in which, after ex- 
pressing his consent to the renunciation of Constantine, he 
declares and ordains -that Nicholas, being from his birth- 
right the next in succession, is the nearest and lawful 
heir to the Crown. The Grand-duke was informed at the 


same time that rimilar papers were deposited at the office 
of the Directing Senate, the Holy Synod, and in the Ca- 
thedral of the Assumption, at Moscow. This information 
did not divert the Grand-duke Nicholas from his purpose. 
The renunciation, although assented to by the late Empe- 
ror, had never been made publicly known, the act had 
never been converted into a law, and His Imperial High- 
ness could not look upon it as irrevocable. He wished by 
his conduct to manifest his respect for the fundamental 
laws of his country respecting the unchangeable order of 
succession to the throne ; and faithful to the oath he had 
just taken, he insisted on every subject in the Empire 
following his example. He pretended not to contest the 
validity of Constantine^s intentions, much less did he wish 
tQ place himself in opposition to the will of his late Sove- 
reign ; but desired only to save the order of succession from 
the least. attempt at ii^regularity — ^to place in its proper 
light the loyalty of his intentions— and to preserve his 
country from even a single moment of uncertainty respect- 
ing the person of its legitimate Sovereign. The Empress- 
mother highly approved of Nicholases determination. But 
the sad news of the demise of Alexander having reached 
Warsaw two days before it was known at St. Petersburgh, 
the Grand-duke Constantine, firm in his original resolution, 
executed two important documents, dated the 8th of De- 
cember, 18S5, which he committed to the care of his Im- 
perial brother, the Grand-duke Michael, then at Warsaw, 
who arrived with them in the Russian Capital on the 16th 
of that month, on which day his arrival was announced in 
the Official Gazette, stating that his Imperial Highness 
had left his Majesty, the Emperor ConstatUiney in ex* 
cellent health. The two acts in question were, first, a 
letter from Constantine to the Empress-mother, wherein he 
alluded to a rescript of the late Emperor, given in answer 
to his determination not to ascend the throne, by which 


rescript he assented to Constantine^s renunciation, and re- 
peated his determination to adhere to his original intention ; 
and secondly, a letter addressed to his brother Nicholas, 
in which h^ declares that his determination not to ascend 
the throne is immutable, gives the title of Imperial Ma- 
jesty to him, and subscribes himself His Majesty^s most 
faithful subject. 

Still Nicholases nice sense of honour would not allow him 
to consider a question pregnant with such mighty conse- 
quences to be thus finally settled. He had taken the oath 
of allegiance to the lawful heir to the throne, and he would 
abide by it, until he learned what Constantine^s sentiments 
would be, when he should have been apprised of that circum- 
stance : and for the expression of those sentiments he de- 
sired to wait, causing in the mean while every public act 
of authority to \ye transacted in the name of Constantine 
Emperor of Russia. At length, the final determination of 
that Prince to adhere to his former voluntary renunciation 
to the throne of Russia, arrived in St. Fetersburgh ; and 
Nicholas, on the 26th of December, consented to take upon 
himself the Imperial dignity, giving at the same time every 
publicity to the different important documents alluded to 
in the present narrative, in virtue of which, he called upon 
the nation to take the oath of fidelity to him, and his heir- 
apparent, and declared his accession to the throne of his 
father to have taken place on the first of December, the day 
of the demise of Alexander. 

The members of the Council of the Empire, the Senate 
of the Holy Synod, took the oaths prescribed, and in 
the course of that morning, all the regiments of guards 
were to have followed this example. But while the two 
Imperial brothers, moved by feelings of devotion to the 
existing laws of the country, had been offering to the 
world an unparalleled example of self-denial, and disin- 


terested loyalty, the spirit of revolt which had for some 
time been meditating deeds of bloodshed in the dark, 
took advantage of the opportunity, to give effect to its ma- 

Scarcely had the majority of the regiments of guards 
fulfilled their duty, and sworn allegiance to the new Sove- 
reign, when the news reached the Imperial' palace, that be- 
tween three and four hundred men of the Moscow regiment 
were marching towards the square of the Senate with flying 
colours, proclaiming Constantine as their Emperor. Crowds 
of people soon began to assemble in the same square, which 
my readers will recollect is that on which stands the statue 
of Peter the Great, and not very far from the Imperial 
Palace. Here the two rebel companies of the regiment in 
question, formed themselves into a square battalion, before 
the Palace of the Senate, commanded by a few subaltern 
officers, and surrounded by some of the lowest rabble strain- 
ing their throats with the cries of houfra ! The presence 
of a military force brave and resolute, became indispen- 
sable ; and the Emperor Nicholas having summoned a 
battalion of the regiment Preobrajensky, put himself at 
their head, and marched, after a few interruptions, to- 
wards the mutineers, fully determined not to have re- 
coyrse to force, except every other means of persuasion 
should fail in restoring to order the misguided soldiery. 
" Voici le moment," exclaimed the young Sovereign ; " de 
moDtrer au peuple Russe^ si je suis digne de lui comman- 
der !" Count Miloradowitch, the military Governor of St. 
Petersburgh, approached the mutineers; he endeavoured 
with expressions of kindness to convince them of their error, 
when a bullet struck him to the ground, and a bayonet 
wound terminated his existence ! This band of rebels had 
already imbrued their hands in the blood of General 
Schenschine, the chief of their brigade, and of the com^ 

VOL. II. 2 I 


mandant of their regiment, General Friedricks. Still the 
Emperor was loth to turn agidnst their comradeB the arms 
of bis faithful troops, now joined by several other regiments, 
and particularly by the Grand-duke Michael, who had fled to 
the assistance of his Monarch with the remaining ax com- 
panies of the same regiment of Moscow, after he had re- 
called them to their duties: — ^and mixing with the muti- 
neers, whose numbers also had increased by the addition 
of the Grenadiers du Corps and the Marins de la Garde^ 
again strove with words of peace to make them fed 
their error. When His Majesty first presented himself 
before a regiment placed near the Imperial Palace, he 
was received by three acclamations of " Hourra, Con- 
stantinel" the watch-word of the conspirators. Not 
in the least dismayed at this reception, Nicholas re- 
torted : ^* If such be your disposition, this is not the 
proper place for your exploits; begone to the Senate* 
square, there to join the rebels who are already in wait- 
ing for you. You shall soon find me there. En avant^ 
marcke r and the revolted solchers obeyed the command, 
filed off before him, and disappeared. In the meanwhile 
a report was brought to the Emperor that his own or the 
Ismailoffsky regiment was wavering. Nicholas instantly 
flew to them, and reminded them that Constantine had 
renounced the Imperial authority. He was received in 
gloomy silence. ^' Voyons,'* said the Emperor,'* jusqu'oii 
ira votre r^volte, me voila seul devant vous, chargez vos 
armes P* These words produced an electric effect on the 
soldiers, and the men who' were [ready for rebellion but 

* I hf^ve been guided in my account of the events that marked this 
day^ by the conversations which I had on the subject with persons 
who had been eye-witnesses to most of them, and on whom I could 
rely^ particularly General , who had been very active on that 

ooeasion, and two or three English gentlemen^ one of whom remained 

OP THE 26th op degbmbrr, n. b., 1S25. 483 

a moment before, now followed the new Tzar with acclama- 
tions of Long live Nicholas, our Sovereign I Night was fast 
approaching, and the mutineers still maintained their sullen 
firmness of purpose, and were deaf to every entreaty and 
friendly remonstrance — to the voice of reconciliation from 
their Sovereign, — ^and the accents of religion from the metro- 
politan of St. Petersburgh ; nor did the awful display of field 
artillery, which by this time had been arranged in front of 
the rebels, seem to influence them more than kind treatment 
had done. Nicholas had hitherto shown his personal cou- 
rage ; It now became necessary to exhibit his firmness, or 
to surrender that authority which he had just assumed, and 
thereby abandon his people to the horrors of a civil strife. I 
have heard more than one resident in St. Petersburgh affirm, 
(one or two of whom were on the spot on that ev«itful day,) 
that had the Emperor been less brave, or not so firm, the 
most awful consequences would have ensued ; and an Eng- 
lish gentleman who had witnessed the transaction from a 
short distance, expressed, in a simple yet forcible language, 
his opinion of the result of that dreaded mutiny, by assure 
ing me, that had the Emperor *' shown the white feather, 
all would have then been up." A few guns were at first 
directed to be fired over the heads of the rebels, but these 
had only the efl^ect of exasperating them, and His Majesty 
saw no other alternative than that to which he had re- 
course at the close of the day. The artillery opened on 
the mutineers, the cavalry charged them when put to flight, 
and by six oVlock at night there were not two of them to 
be found together. Those who had escaped death dis- 

on honeback near the rebels until the firing of musketry made it no 
longer a safe place. I have also consulted the short account given 
of the rebellion by Monsieur D*Ancelot, from which I have quoted 
one or two anecdotes ; and I have made use of the official reports 
published on the following day at St. Petersburgh. 

2 I S 


peraed all over the town, throwing down their arms and 
taking refuge ill private houses, where, by ten o'dock at 
night five hundred of them, including most of the re- 
volted officers, had been arrested. 

Nicholas, who had now been absent the whole day from 
the Imperial Palace, re-entered it at' six o'clock in the 
evening, and was received by his Imperial Consort, whose 
feelings^ as well as those of the Empress-mother, in the 
course of the whole of that awful day, and particularly 
after the report of the murder of Miloradowitch, and dur- 
ing the roaring of cannon, may be more easily conceived 
than expressed. On his entering his Imperial residence, 
the Emperor ordered that the Te Deum which was to have 
been performed in the morning to celebrate his accession to 
the throne, but which had been thus awfully interrupted, 
should be proceeded in that same, night in his presence 
and that of the civil and military ofiicers, as well as of those 
of his Court ; at the conclusion of which an ofBcial report 
was received, that tranquillity had everywhere been re- 
stored in the capital. 

The 26th of December was not one of those accidental 
events which are to be met with in the pages of military 
history, as the ebullitions of the moment ; but was con- 
nected with, and formed part of a deep-laid and long 
existing conspiracy, which had ramifications in many parts 
of the empire, under cover of secret societies, and which 
was afterwards fully detected and unravelled. Its authors 
to the number of one hundred and twenty, all persons of 
rank, were convicted and condemned, and the lives of 
five among them, who had in a more especial manner sworn 
the death of the late Emperor, and the massacre of the 
Imperial family, fell before the outraged shrine of pubhc 

* The High Court of Judicature had condemned thirty-six ©f^^^ 
conspirators to deaths among whom five had the hereditary title of 

OP THB 36th op dbcbmber, n. s., 18S5. 485 

** Vous les avez repouss6 avec effroi et indignation," 
says the Emperor Nicholas, in the proclamation which he 
addressed to the Russian armies after the consummation of 
the awful sentence, ^^ ces fauteurs de troubles et d anarchic 
que vos rangs avaient eu le malheur de rec61er. La jus- 
tice vient de prononcer sur leur sort; la sentence quails 
avaient mentis a re$u son execution, et Tarm^e est pur- 
g6e de la contagion qui la menagait, ainsi que la Russie 
toute enti^re.^ 

Prince, and the rest were Colonels^ Captains, and Lieutenants in the 
anny ; four only were Civilians. His Majesty^ however, commuted 
the capital punishment awarded against thirty-one of them out of the 
total number, into banishment, degradation, and political disqualifi- 
cation ; and left the law to take its awful course with regard to the 
rest. The names of the distinguished persons who composed the 
Court of Inquiry, (I have had occasion to ascertain,) are some 
amongst the most iUustrious in Russian society for integrity, talent 
and stern impartiality. - They were those of 

Tatistcheff, President, Minister at War. 

Michael (Grand-duke), Grand-master of the Artillery. 

Prince Galitzin, Actual Counsellor of State. 

G. Kotouzoff, Aid-de-camp-General and Military Governor 
of St. Petersburgh. 

Tchemycheff (since Count), Aid-de-camp- Creneral. 

Benkendorff, Aid-de-camp-GeneraL 

Lfevacheff, Aid-de-camp-Genend. 

Potapoff, Aid-de-camp-General. 

Bloudoff, Actual Counsellor of State. 

4p86 country RBSIDBNGE8 



Imperial Country Residences and Environs of St. Petersburgii. — 
TcHESME. — Portraits of contemporary Sovereigns with Catherine. 

— Sad coincidences and recollections* — The Caprice. — Theatri- 
cal Village. — Tropheal Column to Orloff. — La Tour des Heritiers. 

— Alexandrovsky. — Sophy. — The Palace of Tzarsco-^elo. — 
Elizabeth and the French Ambanadon. — Catherine and the gold 
scrapers. — Architecture of the Palace. — Fate of the great Ardii* 
tectSj Rastrelliy Brenno^ Dumot^ Voronikhin, Cameron^ and Gua- 
renghi. — Apartments at Tsarsco-gelo. — The Amber and Lapis- 
laznli Rooms.^ Paries and Pleasure Grounds.— Ornamental Build- 
ingSy Temples^ and Colonnades. — Peter the Great and a gratefbl 
Empress, or origin of Tzarsoo-selo. — Paulo vskt. — Trip to 
Gatchina. — Baron de Meycndorff and General Stanger. — The 
Emperor Paul's Establishment. — Polypharmacy. — The School for 

Foundlings. — The Imperial Residence of Gatchina Catherin- 

HOFF. — Strelm a. — Modern Russian Paintings. — Pete&hoff. 

— The Empress Alexandra's Cottage. — Her taste, and that of the 
Emperor for Architecture, and real domestic comforts. — Superb 
View of the Country. — The Palace of Peterhoff. — Private Resi- 
dence of the Emperor Nicholas. — The Russian Versailles. — The 
Emperor Alexander's Private Cabinet. — Last Visit. — State 
Apartments. — The Great Portrait Room. — Monflasir. — 
Kitchen and Bed Room. — L'Hermit age. — The Independent 
Dining Table. — Marly. —The Water-works. — Peter's Sagadty. 

— His extensive Wardrobe. — Oranienbaum. — The Ha ! 

Cronstadt. — The Islands of Yelaouine and Kamennoi. — Pre- 
parations for Departure. — Carriage on Sledges. — Russian Coach- 
makers. — Winter Travelluig Equipment. — Presentation to the 
Empress Alexandra. — Adieu to St. Petersburgh. 

The reader will now be pleased to accompany me and 
a friend or two, although a deep snow covers the ground. 


And the thermometer marks several degrees of cold below 
the freezing point, to the principal Imperial country resi- 
dences situated in the environs of St. Petersburgh. Our 
steps shall be first directed to Tzarsco-9elo the Windsor, or 
St Cloud of the Imperial family of Rusna ; and in visit- 
ing that celebrated spot, we shall have the benefit of the 
architect's company, M. Menelas, a gentleman from Edin- 
burgh, who has been resident in Russia upwards of 
forty years; worked with his countryman, the late Mr. 
Cameron, another eminent architect ; and has been filling 
for many years the ofiice of Imperial Architect, attached 
to the palaces of T£arsco-9elo and Peterhofi; We assuredly 
cannot have a better or more obliging Cicerone. 

Our party engaged a close carriage, or rather the body 
of one, placed on a sledge-bed, drawn by four horses 
abreast, and started at sunrise, the air being most beau- 
tifully clear and bracing. For some distance after leaving 
St. Petersburgh, the road, which is the same that leads to 
Moscow, passes between fields of arable land, recovered 
from drained -morasses by a company of Quakers who work 
for the Crown, and are all settled in the neighbourhood in 
very neat villages. At the seventh verst we crossed a canal, 
and entered the pleasure-grounds of Tchesm^, a small Impe- 
rial seat built by the Empress Catherine, in the centre of a 
large park. This edifice, which was intended to commemo- 
rate the discomfiture of the Turkish naval forces by Or- 
loff, in the harbour of Tchesm^ on the coast of Anatolia, 
is BOW entirely abandoned. Its architecture is that of a 
lofty Turkish pavilion, built of red brick, having a qua- 
drangular form, with a small and pinnacled tower at each 
end. Within, a circular grand staircase leads to twelve 
rooms, which range round a central rotunda of forty feet in 
diameter, and in which are hung the full-length portraits 
c^ all those Sovereigns, and of some of their families, who 

488 . TCHESME. 

were contemporaries with the conqueror at that great sea- 
fight, and who despatched these representatives of their 
persons to testify their approbation of Catherine's mea- 
sures, and their joy at her success against the Sultan. 
With one or two exceptions, the portraits do not mani- 
fest any very great proficiency in the art of painting at the 
epoch in question. They are, in fact, very inferior per- 
formances, although the likeness of a few among them, 
particularly that of the late revered Monarch of Great 
Britain, is very striking. The Imperial apartments, at 
present, are in a dilapidated state, and entirely stripped of 
furniture. Silence reigns where the voice of revelry once 
resounded ; and those chambers present the image of soli- 
tude, in which anxious courtiers, glittering with stars, had 
formerly thronged to catch the smallest glance of their all- 
powerful Imperial mistress. Assuredly the sight of these 
deserted abodes of royalty is admirably calculated to 
awaken reflections of the deepest interest; but when in 
addition to those reflections, the history of such palaces 
suggests coincidences of a painful nature, connected with 
their foi*mer Imperial masters, how much more forcible is the 
lecture they convey to us on the uncertainty of our worldly 
possessions P Tchesme, which had never received within 
its deserted halls its late Sovereigns while living, was des- 
tined to open its gates to admit them when dead. In 
September 18^, the Empress Elizabeth passed by this 
Imperial palace on her way to Taganrog, and was fol- 
lowed soon after by her Imperial consort, who likewise 
traversed the domain of Tchesme on that occasion. In 
less than eight months after, their mortal remains alone 
revisited this same spot, and found siielter for the night 
within the palace, but in a reversed order ; for those of his 
Majesty had the fatal precedence on their return home, and 
were followed by the remains of the Empress two months 


afterwards, being like those of her consort, deposited, 
for a while, in the halls of this Imperial residence ! 
Here the regalia, and the crown, which were to mark the 
exalted rank of the Imperial pilgrims on their return, were 
imposed on their funeral car which left Tchesme soon after 
in gloomy procession for the capital. The stranger who 
18 acquainted with the modern history of Russia, cannot 
but be struck with these sad associations on viewing the 
palace which lies in the road to Imperial Tzarsco-gelo. 

On arriving opposite to one of the gates of this Imperial 
residence, called the Caprice, I observed on my right a 
cluster of white houses of modern architecture, arranged in 
a very singular manner, and not unlike the painted per- 
spective of a drop scene. They are built of different sizes, 
and are smaller the farther they are removed from the road. 
They are disposed in two rows, and converge at the far- 
thest extremity. Their form, shape, and design, are also 
various. The coup-d^ail is striking, and awakens at once 
the curiosity of the observer, to know what could have 
been the origin of so bizarre an arrangement. It is, in fact, 
a Caprice. The Empress Catherine, happening to be at 
the theatre one night, was struck with a painted scene, re- 
presenting the perspective view of a small town, at which 
she expressed her great pleasure to OrlofP, who was with 
her. The next time she visited Tzarsco-9elo, she was agree- 
ably surprised with the sight of her favourite scene, which 
she found there delineated in reality. Orloff, with a rapidity 
that has no parallel,, and which money and unbounded 
authority can alone command, had planned and ordered 
the realization of that scene to surprise his Sovereign ; and 
It must be admitted that he has succeeded admirably ; for 
viewed from the gate of the Caprice, this little town presents 
itself precisely like a perspective town projected upon an even 
surface. In the centre of the open space, between the two 



lines of houses of this theatrical town» rises a column 
bearing a tropheal group in bronze, in commemoratioii of 
the conqueror of Tchesm^, and gallant architect of the 

On entering the ground of Tzar8co-9elo, a tower erected 
by our friend and conductor Mr. Menelas, consisting of seve- 
ral stories, with the modem palace of Alexandrovsky, and 
the neighbouring church, with several neat private houses, 
first presented themselves in succession to our attention. 
In the tower, which is called la Tour des Heritiersy one of 
the Imperial Sons occasionally resides during the summer. 
Another object which attracts notice on appfoaching the 
palace, is a large and elegant structure not far from it, 
which, we were told, is called Sophia^ and is a college of 
education, founded by the late, and now under the protec- 
tion of the present Emperor. One-half of the students are 
free-scholars ; and the rest pay but a trifle for thdr board 
and education. A very handsome and imposing church, 
with an hexastyle portico of great beauty, bearing the 
name of St. Sophia, appeared also in view iu the more dis- 
tant horizon. It ia the work of Guarenghi ; I need not say 
more in its praise to my readers. 

At length we entered the large open space in front of 
the Palace, and found ourselves before an elevation, une- 
qualled in extent, I believe, by any other Royal Country 
Residence in Europe, being twelve hundred feet in length. 
When I state that Rastrelli, who superintended the struo- 
tute of the Winter Palace, was the architect who built, by 
6rder of the Empress Elizabeth, this residence, nearly as 
it now stands, in the room of a smaller house of stone 
erected by Catherine the First, it will be superfluous to add 
any detailed description of the fagade, which was originally 
much more ornamented than it is at present. Every sta- 
tue, pedestal, and capital of the numerous columns ; the 

TZARSC0.9BL0. 491 

vase8» carvings, and other ornaments in front were gilt 
with leaf-gold on oil. The value in gold alone amounted 
to above a million of ducats. When Elizabeth first visited 
this gorgeous structure after its completion, with her nu- 
merous train and the Foreign Ministers, the French Am- 
bassador, struck by its splendour, asked her ^^ oil 6isit Petui 
qui devait renfermer ce pr^deux bijou ;^ and he was right, 
for a few years sufficed to injure the front, and destroy in 
part the gilding ; a circumstance which induced Catherine 
the Second to repair it, and order it to be painted, as it now 
appears. On the occasion of those repairs some of the 
contractors oflTered her Majesty nearly half a million of 
roubles (silver) to be permitted to collect the fragments 
of gold which the ^^ tempus edax^ had spared ; but the 
Empress scornfully refused, saying, ^* Je ne suis pas dans 
Tusage de vendre mes vieilles hardes.^ 

There is a ground and a principal or state-floor, which is 
itself surmounted by an attic story. A running and open 
balustrade crowns the edifice, showing the gable^roof, like 
that of the Tuileries, behind it^ and supporting forty*five 
large statues, and twenty intermediate vases. The general 
line of the front is broken by three advancing portions 
of the building, that which forms the centre containing 
three rows of fifteen large windows, and being itself di- 
vided into three members, by tetrastyle colonnades, which 
support a curiously ornamented pediment. The other two 
advancing portions, right and left, occupy the middle of the 
remainder of the elevation, which extends from the central 
portion to the extremity of the fagade : each of these por- 
tions is pierced by one hundred large windows, separated by 
caiyatides on the ground, and by detached Corinthian co« 
lumns and pilasters on the first story and attics. Inter- 
nally, however, the whole of this stupendous line forms 
but one uninterrupted suite of apartments, the projecting 


portions of the front serving only to give more capacity to 
some of the rooms. A double and open semicircular flight 
of steps occupies externally the middle place of the basement 
in the centre building, leading to a triple grand entrance ; 
and four other single and straight flights are distributed at 
equal distances in the lateral portions of the building. The 
wings project thirty feet in length, and complete the edifice. 
The walls are painted green, the pilasters or columns are 
white, and a deep yellow colour has usurped the place of 
the former gilding on the capitals. On the whole, although 
the manner, in which the beauties of this structure have 
been frittered away by the bad taste of Rastrelji, pre- 
vents all pleasing impressions at the sight of the exterior 
of this pile of buildings ; it is impossible to deny that its 
gigantic dimensions, and the scenery by which it is sur- 
rounded, are calculated to excite infinite surprise in the 
beholder. In the left angle of the building rise conspi- 
cuous the five bulbous domes, surmounted by the Cross, 
and covered with gold, which mark the situation of the 
Imperial Chapel. Before. the Palace there are two semi- 
circular ranges of buildings, in which the ofiicers in the 
suite of the Imperial Family, and visitors of distinction 
are lodged when the Emperor resides at Tzarsco-^elo. On 
the side of the garden, which is four miles in extent, the 
front of the Palace is somewhat less surcharged with orna- 
ments, and has a terrace before it, with an extensive par- 
terre. The fate of poor Rastrelli, the architect of this 
and the Winter Palace, as weU as that. of Strelna and 
Peterhofi^, was a lamentable one. He returned to his native 
country, and died a beggar. But adverse fortune, indeed, 
seems to have marked the destiny of more than one great 
architect of St. Petersburgh. Brenno; an Italian painter 
of great merit, who was much patronised by Paul, by whom 
he was taken into the service as an architect, and at whose 

tzarsco-<;elo. 493 

command he erected the Chdteau de St Micl^l, of which 
I have given a view elsewhere, ran away from Russia, and 
ended his days in poverty at Dresden. Dumot, who mised 
the Grand Theatre before Mauduit, and Voronikhin, the 
peasant of Count Strogonoff, who built the Cathedra] of 
the blessed Lady of Cazan, have been suspected to have 
terminated their existence before its natural conclusion; 
while, at their death, Cameron and Guarenghi disappointed 
the great expectations of their inheritors ; for the former 
left no wealth, and the latter, the small sum of only fifteen 
thousand. roubles. The two last mentioned eminent archi«' 
tects embellished, and modernized, or added to, the build- 
ings of Tzarsco-^elo and other parts of its domain. 

I shall save my readers the trouble of following me 
through the numerous and double or parallel lines of 
splendid apartments ; for, after all, what more can I say 
than that every thing which can embellish and impart 
splendour to the palace of a powerful monarch, has been 
unsparingly lavished on every part of this residence ? In 
ascending, however, a circular flight of stairs in the east 
angle of the palace, we could not but feel more than a 
common interest in finding ourselves in one of the private 
cabinets of the suite of chambers, formerly occupied by the 
late Empress ; in which the several objects that had be- 
longed to that Princess are shown as she left them, pre- 
vious to her last departure. A succession of other rooms 
follows this, at the termination of which is the Picture 
Gallery, where the great fire of 1828, which destroyed the 
chapel and all that part of the palace that intervenes be- 
tween it and the Gallery, was arrested by the promptitude 
with which the orders of Alexander, who was on the spot, 
and the suggestion of Menelas were executed, in cutting 
down the rooms immediately before that Gallery. There 
is a room incrusted all over with amber, which is con- 


sidered as something magnificent ; but I was less surprised 
at the sight of this apartment, than at the discovery I 
made that in this endless range of chambers and halls, there 
is not a single state bed-room » one of the most usual ap- 
pendages to Imperial and Royal palaces. The fact is, that 
neither the present nor the late Imperial family were, or 
are, fond of ostentation and parade. The late Emperor and 
Empress were satisfied with a more unpretending suite of 
apartments in the left angle of the palace ; and the present 
Emperor and his consort live in the new detached struc- 
ture already noticed, called Alexandrovsky. Her Ma- 
jesty, the Empress-mother, alone resides, when at Tzarsoo- I 
gelo, in part of the state rooms, in one of which I noticed 
that the floor consisted of a parquet of fine-wood, inlaid 
with wreaths of mother-of-pearl, and that the panels 
around the room were incrusted with lapis lazulu The 
interior of the chapel, which is of a Copto-Asiatic struc- 
ture, presents an ensemble of rich gilding, which surpasses 
every thing of the kind I had seen before : every part of 
it, even the groups of columns, as well as the Iconostas, 
and the gallery for the Imperial family, shine resplendent ^ 
with gold. The grounds have been laid out with miscel- 
laneous taste, and in a mixed style of ornament, by a suc- 
cession of English gardeners, the principal of whom was 
Mr. Busch. The present Emperor has enlarged the gar- 
dens considerably, and still continues, in a mixed style of 
old and modem art, to add and improve, particularly in 
the park, where a dairy has been built, which the Im- 
perial family often visit, during their residence at Tzarsco- 
felo. There is a variety of handsome old and modern 
buildings, by Charles Cameron, Guarenghi, Rossi, and 
Menelas, in the gardens. Some of the gates, in particular, 
are very handsome. I was very much struck with one, 
above the rest, of the Doric order, intended as a triumphal 

TZARSC0-9BI'0. 495 

arch, and erected by the gratitude of Alexander, who conse- 
crated it by the following inscription on its frieze: — *' A 
mes ch^rs compagnons d'armes!'^-— ^^ Eloignons-nous,^' 
says Monsieur Ancelot, in his recent narrative, speaking of 
this monument of Russian military glory, ^^ eloignons* 
nous en d^toumant les yeux, et ne s^joumons point pr^s 
de ce monument, dont Paspect fait saigner dans le coeur 
d^un Francois des blessures encore si recentes." An 
Egyptian gate is being constructed by Menelas^ between 
the village of Kousmina and Tzarsco-^elo, at the entrance 
of the park. The foundation is laid, and the brick walls 
erected, which are to be entirely covered with cast-iron 
bas-reliefs, composed from compilations taken from the 
great French work on Egypt, designed by Menelas him* 
self, and drawn by Ivanoff for the use of the artist, who is 
to cast them in iron. The dimensions of this gate are 
twenty-one square feet at its base, and sixteen square feet 
at the top. The height is forty feet, and the gate consists 
of two truncated pyramids, having that elevation divided 
into two habitable stories. The figures of the bas-reliefs 
are three feet six inches high, but on each side of the door 
of the pyramids the figures are colossal. Among the less 
recent buildings of this enchanted garden, the most strik- 
ing is, perhaps, the handsome Ionic colonnade, erected by 
Cameron, not far from the palace, situated on a large terrace. 
The colonnade surrounds a gallery, or oblong room, in 
which the Emperor often dines in the summer. Light, 
yet imposing, and a masterpiece of taste and elegance, this 
building supports an aerial garden, crowned in the summer 
season with flowers. There is also a Roman bath, by the 
same artist, not far from the colonnade, which deserves 
great pruse. 

One of the additions made in the present reign is a 
Crotbic chapel in ruins, situated in the midst of a wood at 

496 TZAR8GO-9HLO. 

the south-western extremity of the Park, erected by Me- 
nelas, in which is deposited a crucifix of white marble, 
seven feet high, the work of Danneker, together with an 
Egyptian sarcophagus, sent as a present by Count Tolstoy, 
from Alexandria. The effect is imposing. 

Neither the season nor the weather were calculated to 
favour our rambles through the Park and over the pleasure- 
grounds, where at each step new wonders and new beauties 
burst upon the astonished wanderer. The Theatre and 
Music-room, the Turkish Kiosk, and the Chinese Arch ; 
the Rostral Column and the Obelisk of Count Roumiant- 
zoff ; the Arch and Column, erected in memory of Orloff ; 
the Morning-room, the Chinese Pagoda, and the splendid 
marble Bridge ; and, finally, the Gothic buildings, called 
the Admiralty, placed on the borders of an extensive lake, 
present themselves in succession to the attention of the visi- 
tor, who in a more favourable season than the one in which 
we saw it, cannot fail to quit with regret so enchanting 
a scene. ** In these gardens,^ says one of the Imperial 
gardeners, an Englishman, ^* the keeping is equal, if not 
superior, to any in Europe, no expense being spared to 
have every thing in the best possible order.^ 

Mighty things have often had very small beginnings. 
This is particularly the case with the Imperial Country 
Residence of Tzarsco-9elo. Peter the Great had just com- 
pleted an Imperial Villa for his much attached Catherine, 
whose name he gave to it, when the Empress, grateful for 
her husband^s attention, determined on preparing a surprise 
for him in return for his kindness. With this intention 
she selected a plain twenty-five versts from St. Peters- 
burgh, most delightfully situated near a village belonging 
to a noble Hungarian lady, call