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only by the mounted Circassians, or, as they are termed, the Mamelukes of the Guard, in number about forty or fifty. These wear scarlet uniforms, made after the fashion of their country, and are a wild and picturesque-looking body of men. Some are armed with carbines, and some have bows and arrows at their backs.
The infantry was followed by a train of footartillery; after which there was a halt for a few minutes, and then the cavalry came up, led by the regiment of Chevaliers-gardes, with their Colonel, the Grand Duke Alexander, the heir-apparent, at their head. The band of each regiment stationed itself opposite the Emperor, and played while the regiment marched past, and each company or troop as it came up saluted the Emperor with a shout, according to the Russian custom : as soon as the regiment had been reviewed, the Colonel was called up and complimented by the Emperor.
There were four regiments of Cuirassiers, a portion of each being Lancers; a regiment of Horse Grenadiers ; a splendid regiment of Hussars of the Guard, in scarlet uniforms, and mounted on greys: and these were followed by Lancers, Cossacks, and a superb train of Horse Artillery ; the whole force being wound up by the Pontoon Train, which I have mentioned.
After a halt for a few minutes, the whole of the troops passed a second time before the Emperor, the
Infantry at double-quick, after which they marched off the ground, and the Cavalry at a trot or handgallop. The review was to have concluded with a grand charge of Cavalry, but this manæuvre was countermanded, in consequence of the number of accidents which had occurred at a sort of rehearsal a few days before, on which occasion fourteen officers got falls, and were more or less hurt; and one of them having been ridden over by a squadron, was so much injured, as to render his recovery doubtful.
The Emperor was highly pleased by this review, and a bounty was proclaimed to every soldier who had taken part in it, of three roubles, three glasses of brandy, and three pounds of meat.
The immense plains in the south of Russia furnish most of the horses, for the Cavalry, which is exceedingly well mounted, and the horses of each corps beautifully matched. The price allowed for troopers does not exceed two or three hundred roubles per horse, but the commission to purchase them is given to officers of good fortune, who are glad to obtain leave of absence on this ground, and to purchase good horses, making up out of their own pockets the difference between the Government allowance and the actual cost.
This review is the finale of the Petersburg season, as the court will shortly be dispersed; the Empress starts in a few days for Germany, and the Emperor will soon follow her; the Grand Duchesses will
spend the Summer at Tzarsko Celo, or Peterhof, and the heir-apparent will perform a foreign tour. In Easter-week M— had a private interview with the Empress, who received her at the palace with great kindness and affability; and a few days ago I had the honour of a short conversation with Her Majesty, who met us when she was walking with the Grand Duchess Mary, in the Public Gardens, and recognizing M— stopped very graciously to talk to us for a few minutes.
Opening of the navigation-Visit to the Academy of Fine Arts—The
president—The destruction of Pompeii by Brilloff-Young Kotzebue- Manufactory of tapestry—Malachite Temple-Public Library -The MSS.—Writing of Mary Queen of Scots - Autographs Letter from Henrietta, Queen of Charles I.-Expedition to Tzarsko Celo by the rail-road-Conclusion of the letters.
St. Petersburg, May 22nd, 1838. Two days ago the first steam-boats of this season, from Lubeck, came into Cronstadt; one of them had been due ten days, but had been unable to make its way earlier through the ice. However, as the navigation of the Gulf of Finland is at last open, I presume we may consider the winter as fairly at an end in spite of the Ladoga ice, which still* continues at intervals to float thickly past. Great numbers of people have been long waiting with impatience to commence a summer-trip abroad in search of health or pleasure, and the two steam-boats which will sail for Lubeck to-morrow and the next day, will be
* The last ice came down on the 26th of May; the leaves on the lime-trees did not open till about the 1st of June.
crowded with passengers. We have changed our plan of leaving Petersburg by the earliest opportunity, but we shall not linger here much longer, and this is probably the last letter which you will receive from this end of the Baltic: I hope its waves will be tolerably peaceful for a few days, as though we do not put to sea ourselves to-morrow, some friends, in whom we are particularly interested, will be passengers in the Naslednick.
Among the lions which we have lately been visiting, are the Public Library of Petersburg, and the Academy of Fine Arts, of which M—'s uncle, Mr. Olènine,* is president. He is one of the most distinguished literary men in Russia, was private secretary to the late Emperor, and has been for
many years high in office. His house is well known to most foreigners who have visited St. Petersburg; and we at least have spent in it many of our most agreeable hours.
The object of greatest interest in the Academy, at present, is a large historical picture, by the Russian painter, Brilloff. The subject is the destruction of Pompeii, and the picture was painted in Italy; it was presented to the Academy by M. Demideff, who
* Tradition says, that this family came originally from Ireland, and they suppose the name to be a corruption of O'Neill. A certain degree of fable is, however, mingled in the history, as the Hibernian Ancestress is said to have been borne across the sea by a bear, in commemoration of which remarkable circumstance, a bear carrying a lady, appears at this day in their coat of arms.