Russia, Volume 2

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Cassell, Petter & Galpin, 1877 - Russia

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Page 411 - Remember, that for the wisest and most evident reasons, the merciful maxim of the law, which says that it is better that ninety-nine guilty men should escape, than that one innocent man should be punished...
Page 261 - The proprietor," it is said in the Laws (Vol. IX., 1045, ed. an. 1857), "may impose on his serfs every kind of labor, may take from them money dues (obrok) and demand from them personal service, with this one restriction, that they should not be thereby ruined, and that the number of days fixed by law should be left to them for their own work.
Page 86 - In some stanitzas [Cossack villages] the richer families appropriated enormous quantities of the common land by using several teams of oxen, or by hiring peasants in the nearest villages to come and plough for them ; and instead of abandoning the land after raising two or three crops they retained possession of it.
Page 211 - God has placed me over Russia,' said the Tsar to us, 'and you must bow down before me, for my throne is His altar. Trouble not yourselves with public affairs, for I think for you and watch over you every hour. My watchful eye detects internal evils and the machination of foreign enemies; and I have no need of counsel, for God inspires me with wisdom. Be proud, therefore, of being my slaves, O Russians, and regard my will as your law.
Page 214 - Russia ! Devoured by foreign enemies, crushed by slavery, shamefully oppressed by stupid authorities and spies, awaken from your long sleep of ignorance and apathy ! You have been long enough held in bondage by the successors of the Tartar Khan. Stand forward calmly before the throne of the despot, and demand from him an account of the national disaster.
Page 185 - ... of ecclesiastical independence which are so common in Western Europe, and that spirit of opposition to the civil power which animates the Roman Catholic clergy, are entirely foreign to their minds. If a bishop sometimes complains to an intimate friend that he has been brought to St. Petersburg and made a member of the Synod, merely to append his signature to official papers and to give his consent to foregone conclusions, his displeasure is directed, not against the Emperor, but against the Procureur....
Page 262 - ... the guilty ones to corporal punishment not exceeding forty lashes with the birch or fifteen blows with the stick (1052); and if he considered any of his serfs as incorrigible he could present them to the authorities to be drafted into the army or transported to Siberia as he might desire (1053-55). In cases of insubordination, where the ordinary domestic means of discipline did not suffice, he could call in the police and the military to support his authority. Such were the legal means by which...
Page 309 - The serfs were thus not only liberated, but also made possessors of land and put on the road to becoming Communal proprietors, and the old Communal institutions were preserved and developed. In answer to the question, Who effected this gigantic reform? we may say that the chief merit undoubtedly belongs to the Emperor. Had he not possessed a very great amount of energy he would neither have raised the question nor allowed it to be raised by others, and had he not shown a decision and energy of which...
Page 355 - If the orthodox church," says Mr. Wallace significantly, " could make the peasantry refrain from the inordinate use of strong drink as effectually as it makes them refrain during a great part of the year from the use of animal food, and if it could instil into their minds a few simple moral principles as successfully as it has inspired them with a belief in the efficacy of the sacraments, it would certainly confer on them an inestimable benefit.
Page 211 - We listened to these words with deep reverence, and gave a tacit consent ; and what was the result ? Under mountains of official papers real interests were forgotten. The letter of the law was observed, but negligence and crime were allowed to go unpunished. While grovelling in the dust before ministers and directors of departments...

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