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ing to excess is not limited to the lower classes, but extends to the highest ranks of society. Noblemen in Sweden, if we are to credit the narrator, are generally incapacitated, on quitring their table, from attending to any serious concerns. Even the Swedish Indies have been charged, by some travellers, with drinking drams: but the present author very gallantly repels the imputation.
We now proceed to the Third Voluine, which treats of Rose sia. Though, in general, we have been pleased with the liberality and candour of the two travellers who collected the materials contained in the present publication, yet it is not impossible that, as Frenchimen, they painted with too glaring colours some defects of a monarchy, which, comparativeiy speaking, is still in its infancy with respect to civilization. On this subject, however, English readers are in no danger of being misled; having been lately presented with a correct and comprehensive View of the Russian Empire, by a writer* whe, from his long residence in that country, and the very great variety of books consulted by him, is entitled to the highest credit.
The police of Petersburgh, it should seem, from the account before us, is not on the most respectable footing. There happen, indeed, but few accidents in the night; yet sometimes murders are committed, and especially thefts : for which, according to our author, it is exceedingly rare to obtain justice. When a person has been assassinated in some place of bad repute, the police-oficer is engaged to secrecy by means of a few rubles, so that the affair is soon hushed up; uniess the deceased belonged to some powerful family, whose interest makes it necessary that inquiries should be instituted. When two persons quarrel either in the strett or in a public-house, be who pays the inquirer is always in the right; the inferior policeofficers are never proof against money; and the poor individual, whether he be in the right or wrong is almost sure of a beating.
• Moscow is unlike any other town in Europe. The constructii of the houses, and the mode of life of the inhabitants, (in partienlar che great lords,) prevent the formation of any correct idea concerning it, at a distance. It is, in the true sense of the word, a Russian town; whereas Petersburgh can only be considered as an European colony, where it is impossible to acquire any knowlege of the Ring nation, except after a long residence. Moscow is uncleanly in the extreme, and at night very ill lighted. From the number of
carriages of every kind, which are seen on all roads leading to that city, we might expect to find there excellent accommodations:=but the very reverse is the case.'
The Rev. Mr. Tooke, to whose performance wę, shall shortly attend.
• A contrast
* A contrast singularly striking is presented in several streets, by · furty or fifty cottages of wood, exhibiting the greatest distress ; iz
the midst of which rises an immense palace of brick, built with great architectural skill, and bespeaking the highest opulence. Often a very fine carriage is drawn by four miserable aniinals, with ropes for harness, and, instead of a coachman or postillion, a wretched 100gick (peasant) all in tatters. It is not rare to behold, at the door of a magnificent nobleman's house, some exceedingly well drest do. mestics in company with others, serving the same master, whose appearance might induce a belief that they were begging charity; and the same contrast of luxury and misery, of abundance and want, prevails throughout.-The bulk of the Russian nobility reside at Moscow; and those few, who, on account of their situations under government, are obliged to live at Petersburgh, no sooner obtain their liberty, than they retire to Moscow; where there is no court to controul their whims; and no sovereign to prevent them from launching out into that magnificence which is suited to their fortune. It is at Moscow that the traveller is to look for those Culossusses of luxury, which will afford him a complete idea of oriental satraps,
• A sort of luxury, which we have seen only in this place, and which cannot be found but in a courtry where the nobility dispose at their pleasure of a great number of individuals, is that of companies of players. Eight or ten noblemen had each their theatre; some had an Italian opera and a ballet. The comedians of Count Scheremetow* were the most remarkable; the rest attained but to mediocrity. All the effects of these companies are the sole property of the noblemen ; who have no other trouble with them, than that of allotring to every one the part which he is to perform, whether it be that of actor, singer, dancer, or musician. The same may be observed with regard to the bands of musicians kept hy nobleinen; they are always slaves; but their master determined that they should hold a violin or a flute, rather than a rake or a bill-hook. Thus a set of peasants is soon transformed into a complete orchestra. From the facility of such establishments, there is nothing so common at Moscow as musical parties, which are often very numerous, in the houses of private gentlemen; who have only to maintain, either ill or well, and, on assembly.days, to dress cleanly, these new made artists. We heard several of these bands, which really were not contemptible: indeed we were not told how many hundred lashes their apprenticeship had cost them: but the means lay concealed, and we were to enjoy the effect.'
The Fourth Volume likewise tteats of Russia, and presents several curious particulars relating to that vast empire; which now, more than ever, attracts the attention of the world.
* Storch, in his Picture of Petersburgh, calls this nobleman (whose name he spells Scheremetjew) the richest individual of the Russian empire. Roo.
It might be imagined that, in a country of which the very climate is supposed to be unfavourable to the votaries and professors of arts and sciences, instruction could only be procured at a considerable expence, and with much trouble. Few parts of the world, however, are so plentifully provided with masters and tutors of every description; all of whom come from abroad. Their great number, especially in the larger cities, ought to excite some suspicion of their qualifications, and should render parents cautious in choosing from among those who present themselves : but, on the contrary, a master is approved as soon as he offers. He generally assumes the character of a French language master, which is sufficient; and the father entrusts to him the education of a youth who perhaps possesses seeds of the greatest natural talents, which a want of prokt care will keep concealed for ever. To throw some light on tiis subject, we extract the following anecdotes :
• When Count Anhalt was at Moscow, a person requested an audience of him in private : the count, unwilling to send away his cousin, who happened to be with him, desired that the stranger would explain himself in the presence of that gentleman. -Does your exuellency not know me ? - No.--Your excellency may, perhaps, rrecieri che Lajeunesse, who was drummer in your regiment in Prussia, and whom you forced torun the gauntlet ?-What, is it you, rogue ? and what is your business bere ? --I am preceptor in the family where your excellency dines 19-day; I was afraid lest you should recognise me, and expose me in such a manner as might take
be means of my subsistence ; and I am come to acquaint your excellency with these circumstances. --- Since there are people weak iacugb to fix on you for a tutor, I will do no injury to you : but, if you have ube assurance to place yourself at the same table with me, I shall bere gi? thrown out at the window.--Your excellency needs be under no uneasiness. The heretofore drummer then made a low bow, and dined that day abroad.
• When M. de Juigné resided in Russia, in the capacity of French minister, he met one day at a house in Moscow, where he paid a visit, a man who formerly had been one of his postillions, and now filled the post of private tutor.'
It is not, indeed, surprising that these ingenious persons, who are for the most part Frenchmen, should on their arrival in Russia be willing to relinquish the offices of drummer, postillion, or valet-de-chambre, in favour of situations which are generally worth from four tó five hundred rubles a-year, with the addition of comfortable board and lodging. Address and confidence, in which that nation is seldom deficient, compensate for their want of merit; though sometimes sudden emergencies will strip them of all their borrowed plumes. One of these French preceptors, being interrogated by a person who entertained doubts respecting his learning, as to what was meant by nominative, genitive, dative, and the modes of the
verb, replied that he had left France fifteen years ago ; and that, as many novelties sprang up in that country, especially in the department of Nodes, those which the gentleman had just mentioned must certainly have been created since his departure !
The people of fashion in Russia, as the author has already observed in another volume, display uncommon maguificence in their houses, which principally consists in keeping an open table, and a multitude of male and female servants. The latter species of luxury is often carried to such lengths, that in wealthy families the number of domestics amounts to eighty, a hundred, or upwards. The Russians value themselves greatly on this ostentatious shew of grandeur, which, they say, is no where else to be found :--but it is not difficult for a Russian nobleman, possessing several thousands of slaves, to assemble about him as many as he pleases. What other European nation is in a situation to imitate this barbaric parade ? — The author assures us that only the principal domestics are paid as in other countries, the rest receiving a pittance of forty, and some only thirty rubles a-year; the consequence of which is that they steal wherever they can; and, though richly clad on extraordinary occasions, occurring not above once or twice annually, they have scarcely shoes to their feet during the remainder of the year. This custom, prevailing in a country so thinly inhabited, will draw forth the censure of those who are of opinion that, in a nascent state, as many hands as possible ought to be employed in agriculture. The same remark holds with respect to horses; of which, many Russian grandees keep eighty, when twenty or thirty would fully answer their purpose, if that number implied equal wealth.
The luxury of the table is commensurate with the other expences of Russian magnificence. In families of distinction, almost every article necessary for the table is supplied from abroad. The Russians, in general, are immoderate eaters; and all ranks are excessively fond of pickled vegetables, horseradish, spiced ragouts, and other unwholesome food. Before dinner, as in Sweden, it is customary to hand about brandy, or other spirits, together with some cheese, or any thing else that they deem provoking to the appetite. The fruit of the mildcr climates is also in great request; hence, hot-houses are no where more frequent than in Russia; and multitudes of grapes and water-melons are imported from Astracan, though distant from Petersburgh more than seven hundred leagues.
The Russian taste in dress may be guessed, after what has been said of their predilection for shew. Whatever dazzles, or is rich, they think most becoming. That lady is best
dressed who displays the greatest quantity of diamonds and spangles; though the female sex, in other respects, discover
much more of what is termed taste in dress than the mea.: However prone the Russian noblemen may be to indulge in
various kinds of luxury, that of libraries, pictures, and collec- tions of curiosities, is not among the number; indeed they
are not generally fond of reading; and the author charges them with not knowing so much as the names of their most celebrated literati. In conversation one day with a man of great distinction at Petersburgh, and taking notice to him of the justly famous Pallas, the travellers were asked by the gentleman who that person was?
The passion for gaming is said to be very prevalent in Russia. In many families at Petersburgh, reputed to be open to all strangers, a visitor is soon disregarded if he announces that he is not in the habit of playing at cards. A traveller, accustomed to sensible conversation, will receive little attention if he dwells on any topic higher than yesterday's ball, or to-morrow's opera. When the Russians do not play, they sleep. Balls are not protracted far into the night, yet people of fashion rise late, and many of them retire to rest after dinner.
The winter is spent entirely within doors, or in carriages and sledges. Many ladies might be mentioned, who, during ten years past, have not walked for three hours in the whole. The author says that he is rint acquainted with any country in which the people take so little exercise; and this circumstance, added to the habit of sleepieg and eating at all hours, produces grossness in the blood, and many consequent maladies.
Respecting Prince Potemkin, so much has been written, that we have very little chance of extracting from the present volumes any circumstance relating to him that would have the recommendation of novelty: his immense wealth, his luxury, and his pride, are well known. Though he treated the others in the army with great haughtiness, the private soldiers were so niuch humoured and indulged by him, that all discipline among them was destroyed. This conduct, it is alleged, was preconcerted between the late Empress and him, in order to sow discord between the officers and the men, especialiy in the guards. Both the sovereign and Potemkin were sensible that, in Russia, revolutions are efected by the soldiers; and that such a spirit ought to be kept up among them, as would sacrifice the officers at a word. Of Potemkin's supposed views, some of which are said to have tended even to the exclusion of his present majesty from the throne, as well as of other particulars relating to that favourite, our travellers have communicated some circumstances which are interesting, but not suitable for our es.