A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 02 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 778 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 02.

The grand duke returned to Moscow from his journey to the frontiers about the end of December; and, as I could not reconcile myself to the manners and mode of life of the Russians, I became exceedingly impatient to leave the country, and could not persuade myself to stay for the return of Stephen from Venice with money.  For this reason, I made interest with one of the lords of the court, to prevail on the grand duke to supply me with money, and to give me leave to depart.  A few days afterwards, the grand duke sent for me to court and invited me to dinner, when he agreed, from respect to the republic, to lend me as much money as was necessary to clear all my debts to the Tartarian and Russian merchants, and to enable me to return to Venice.  The dinner was quite magnificent, consisting of every delicacy, and of abundance of exquisitely dressed dishes.  When the repast was finished, I retired according to custom.  Some days afterwards, I was again invited to court, and the grand duke gave orders his treasurer to give me all the money necessary for paying my debts, besides which, he presented me with 1000 ducats, and a magnificent dress of Scythian squirrels skins, to wear in his presence when I came to court.  Before returning to my quarters, he ordered me to be presented to the grand duchess, who received me very graciously, and desired me to offer her respectful salutations to our illustrious republic, which I promised to do.

[1] This journey appears to have been through the country on the west of
    the Wolga, which they probably passed about Czariein, through the
    provinces of Saratov, Woronez, and Penza, avoiding the Ilafla, to
    Rezan or Riazan.—­E.

[2] Rezan or Riazan, in the province of that name, on the Oka.  In a
    considerable, part of the track of this journey, there are now towns
    and villages; but the whole of this south-eastern frontier of European
    Russia, appears to have been then entirely waste, and pervaded by the
    wandering Tartars.  We are quite in the dark respecting the particulars
    of the route from Astracan to Rezan.  It was certainty on the east of
    the Wolga at the first, to avoid the Tartars which occupied the
    country between the Caspian and Euxine.  The passage of that vast
    river may have been at Czariein, at its great elbow, in lat. 48 deg. 30’N.
    or about Saratov in 51 deg. 20’N. neither of which towns seem to have then
    existed.  From thence they would probably proceed, to avoid the larger
    rivers, between where Penza and Tchenbar now stand, and by the scite
    of Morbansk, towards Riazan.—­E.

[3] In the original this large bridge is said to have been at Kolomna,
    which is on the river Mosqua, of very inferior magnitude; and flows
    into the Oka, which most probably is the Monstrus of the text.—­E.

[4] In the original, the commander of this body of cavalry is said to have
    been a Tartarian general—­E.

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