Watchman's Teaching Letter #182 June 2013

This is my one hundred and eighty-second monthly teaching letter and continues my sixteenth year of publication. Since WTL #137, I have been continuing a series entitled The Greatest Love Story Ever Told, and have been expanding on its seven stages ever since: (1) the courtship, (2) the marriage, (3) the honeymoon, (4) the estrangement, (5) the divorce, (6) the reconciliation, and (7) the remarriage.


THE ESTRANGEMENT (of Benjamin) continued:

To fully grasp this lesson, one will need to review or acquire WTL #’s 179, 180 & 181, for they are essential to the story of Benjamin’s destiny! Presently, we are interested in how many Russian Benjamites died as a result of the Bolshevik-jewish revolution. For this, I will cite pre-Bolshevik history from the 1894, 9th edition of The Encyclopedia Britannica, vol. 21, pp. 74-75 & 86-88 (although not perfect in every aspect, at least at that time, Britannica was free of yiddish control):

pp. 74-75: “The above-described features of the physical geography of the empire explain the relative uniformity of this wide territory, in conjunction with the variety of physical features on its outskirts. They explain also the rapidity of the expansion of Slavonic colonization over these thinly peopled regions; and they also throw light upon the internal cohesion of the empire, which cannot fail to strike the traveller as he crosses this immense territory, and finds everywhere the same dominating race, the same features of life. In fact, in their advance from the basins of the Volkhoff and Dnieper to the foot of the Altai and Sayan Mountains, that is, along nearly a quarter of the earth’s circumference, the Russian colonizers could always find the same physical conditions, the same forests and prairies as they had left at home, the same facilities for agriculture, only modified somewhat by minor topographical features. New conditions of climate and soil, and consequently new cultures and civilizations, the Russians met with, in their expansion towards the south and east, only beyond the Caucasus, in the Aral-Caspian region, and in the basin of the Usuri on the Pacific coast. Favored by these conditions the Russians not only conquered northern Asia – they colonized it.

The total population of the Russian empire was stated at 102, 000,000 by estimates made in 1878-1882; but it is multiplying rapidly, and, the surplus of births over deaths reaches nearly 1,250,000 every year, it must now be somewhat more than 106 million.

Within the empire a very great diversity of nationalities is comprised, due to the amalgamation or absorption by the Slavonian race of a variety of Ural-Altaic stems, of Turco-Tartars, Turco-Mongolians, and various Caucasian stems. Statistics as to their relative strength are still very imperfect, and their ethnical relations have not as yet been completely determined; but, considered broadly, they may be classified as follows:

A. The Letto-Slavonians comprise (a) the Lithuanians and Letts on the lower Niemen and Düna, and (b) the Slavonians, that is, the Poles on the Vistula and Niemen and the Russians – Great, Little, and White – whose proper abodes are in European Russia, south of a line drawn from the Gulf of Finland to the middle Volga. Spreading from this region towards the northeast, east, and southeast, they have colonized northeast Russia, the Ural region, Caucasus, Siberia, and large parts of the Kirghiz Steppe, – the leading feature of their colonization having always been penetration in compact masses among the original inhabitants. Thus, on northern Caucasus the Russians (chiefly Little Russians) already constitute a compact rural population of nearly 1,500,000, that is, about a quarter of the total population of Caucasia. In Western Siberia the Great Russians already number more than 2,300,000 agriculturists, constituting four-fifths of the entire population; in Eastern Siberia they number more than 1,000,000, that is, probably more than the original inhabitants; and the Kirghiz Steppe has also begun rapidly to be colonized within the last twenty years. It is only in the more densely peopled Turkestan, and in the recently annexed Transcaspian region, that Russian settlers continue to bear but a small proportion to the natives (who are more than 4,600,000 strong). The Slavonians altogether number more than 75,000,000, of which number 5,600,000 are Poles.

Swedes (310,000), Germans (1,240,000), Roumanians, Serbs, etc., may number altogether about 2,500,000.

B. A great variety of populations belonging to the Caucasian race, but not yet well classified, some of which are considered to be remainders of formerly larger nationalities pushed aside into the mountain tracts during their migrations, are met with on Caucasus. Such are the Georgians, Ossetes, Lesghians, who fall little short of 2,500,000, and the Armenians, about 1,000,000.

C. The Iranian branch is represented by some 130,000 Persians and Kurds in Caucasia and Transcaucasia, and by Tajihs in Turkestan, mixed with Turco-Tartar Sarts. The nomad Tsigans, or Gypsies, numbering nearly 12,000, may be mentioned under this head.

D. The [ed. non-] Semitic branch consists of upwards of 3,000, 000 Jews in Poland, in west and southwest Russia, and on Caucasus and in the towns of Central Asia, and of a few thousand Karaite Jews.

E. The Ural-Altaic branch comprises two great subdivisions – the Finnish and the Turco-Tartarian stems, mixed to some extent with Mongolians. The former occupy, broadly speaking, a wide stretch of territory to the north of the Slavonians, from the Baltic to the Yenisei, and include the Baltic Finns, the Northern Finns, the Volga Finns, and the Ugrians. The Russians have already spread among the last two in compact masses, and, while some stems, like the Ostiaks, are rapidly disappearing, others, like the Mordvinians, Permians, etc., are losing their national character, and becoming assimilated to the Russians. The West Finns alone have fully maintained their national features, and happen to have constituted a nationality developing into a separate state.

The Turco-Tartars (nearly 10,000,000) comprise the Tartars, the Bashkirs, the Kirghizes, the Uzbegs, and the Turcomans of the AraI-Caspian region, the Yakute on the Lena, and a variety of smaller stems in East Russia and Caucasia. They occupy another broad belt which extends from the Aral-Caspian depression to the eastern parts of the Arctic coast.

F. The Mongol-Manchurian stems of the Tunguses, and the Golds, and the Manchus proper, come next, occupying the eastern parts of the mountain-belt and the plateau itself in Siberia, the Tunguses also projecting northwestwards, so as to separate the Yakuts from their southern Turkish brethren. Small stems of the same family also pass a nomad existence in the basin of the Amur. They are rapidly diminishing in number, and can hardly be estimated at more than 50,000.

G. The Mongolian branch is represented by nearly half a million of Kalmucks on the Altai outskirts of the great plateau and around the Caspian, and by nearly 250,000 Buriats in and around the Baikal depression.

H. A variety of stems, not yet well classified, are met with on the Pacific coasts. Such are the Tchuktchies, the Kamchadales, the Koryaks in the northeast, the Ghilyaks on the Amur, and the Ainos in Saghalin.

Statistics of the relative strength of different nationalities in the Russian empire, which, however, must be considered only as rough estimates, are given (in millions) in Table I. [not shown here]

The area and population of the various divisions of the Russian empire are given in Table II. [not shown here] ....

The Russian empire falls into two great subdivisions, the European and the Asiatic, the latter of which, representing an aggregate of nearly 6,500,000 square miles, with a population of only 16 million inhabitants, may be considered as held by colonies. The European dominions comprise European Russia, Finland, which is in fact a separate nationality treated to some extent as an allied state, and Poland, whose very name has been erased from official documents, but which nevertheless continues to pursue its own development. The Asiatic dominions comprise the following great subdivisions: Caucasia (q.v.), under a separate governor-general; the Transcaspian region, which is under the governor-general of Caucasus; the Kirghiz Steppes; Turkestan (q.v.), under separate governors-general; Western Siberia and Eastern Siberia ....”

Ibid. pp. 86-88: “It appears certain, moreover, that in the 7th century southern Russia was occupied by the empire of the Khazars (q.v.), who drove the Bulgarians, descendants of the Huns, from the Don, one section of them migrating up the Volga to found there the Bulgarian empire, and the remainder migrating towards the Danube. This migration compelled the Northern Finns to advance farther west, and a mixture of Tavasts and Karelians penetrated to the south of the Gulf of Finland.

Finally, it is certain that as early as the 8th century, and probably still earlier, a stream of Slavonian colonization, advancing eastward from the Danube, was thrown on the plains of southwestern Russia. It is also most probable that another similar stream – the northern, coming from the Elbe, through the basin of the Vistula – ought to be distinguished. In the 9th century the Slavonians already occupied the Upper Vistula, the southern part of the lake region, and the central plateau in its western parts. They had Lithuanians to the west; various Finnish stems, mixed towards the southeast with Turkish stems (the present Bashkirs); the Bulgars, whose origin still remains doubtful, on the middle Volga and Kama; and to the southeast the Turkish-Mongolian world of the Petchenegs, Polovtsi, Uzes, etc.; while in the south, along the Black Sea, extended the empire of the Khazars, who kept under their rule several Slavonian stems, and perhaps also some of Finnish origin. In the 9th century also the Ugrians are supposed to have left their Ural abodes and to have crossed southeastern and southern Russia on their way to the basin of the Danube.

If these numerous migrations on the plains of Russia be taken into account, and if we add to them the Mongolian invasion, the migration of South Slavonians towards the Oka, the North Slavonian colonization extending northeast towards the Urals and thence to Siberia, the slow advance of Slavonians into Finnish territory on the Volga, andat a later period their advance into the prairies on the Black Sea, driving back the Turkish stems which occupied them, – if we consider the manifold mutual influences of these three races on one another, we shall be able to form a faint idea of the present population of European Russia.

If the Slavonians be subdivided into three branches – the western (Poles, Czechs, and Wends), the southern (Serbs, Bulgarians, Croatians, etc.), and the eastern (Great, Little, and White Russians), it will be seen that, with the exception of some 3,000,000 Ukrainians or Little Russians, in East Galicia and in Poland, and a few on the south slope of the Carpathians, the whole of the East Slavonians occupy, as a compact body, western, central, and southern Russia.

Like other races of mankind, the Russian race is not a pure one. The Russians have taken in and assimilated in the course of their history a variety of Finnish and Turco-Finnish elements. Still, craniological researches show that, notwithstanding this fact, the Slavonian type has maintained itself with remarkable persistency – Slavonian skulls ten and thirteen centuries old exhibiting the same anthropological features as are seen in those of our own day. This may be explained by a variety of causes, of which the chief is the maintenance by the Slavonians down to a very late period of gentile organization and gentile marriages, a fact vouched for, not only in the pages of Nestor, but still more by deep traces still visible in the face of society, the gens later on passing into the village community, and the colonization being carried on by great compact bodies. This has all along maintained the same characters. The Russians do not emigrate as isolated individuals; they migrate in whole villages. The overwhelming numbers of the Slavonians, and the very great differences in ethnical type, belief, mythology, between the Aryans and Turanians, may have contributed in the same direction, and throughout the written history of the Slavonians we see that, while a Russian man, far away from his home among Siberians, readily marries a native, the Russian woman seldom does the like. All these causes, and especially the first-mentioned, have enabled the Slavonians to maintain their ethnical features in a relatively high degree of purity, so as to assimilate foreign elements and make them reinforce or improve the ethnical type, without giving rise to half-breed races. The maintenance of the very same North-Russian type from Novgorod to the Pacific, with but minor differentiations on the outskirts – and this notwithstanding the great variety of races with which the Russians came in contact – cannot but strike the observer. But a closer observation of what is going on even now on the recently colonized confines of the empire – where whole villages live, and will continue to live, without mixing with natives, but very slowly bringing them over to the Russian manner of life, and then very slowly taking in a few female elements from them – gives the key to this prominent feature of Russian life, which is a colonization on an immense scale, and assimilation of foreigners, without in turn losing the primary ethnical features.

Not so with the national customs. There are features – the wooden house, the oven, the bath – which the Russian never abandons though lost amidst alien populations. But when settled among these the Russian – the North-Russian – readily adapts himself to many other differences. He speaks Finnish with Finns, Mongolian with Buriats, Ostiak with Ostiaks; he shows remarkable facility in adapting his agricultural practices to new conditions, without, however, abandoning the village community; he becomes hunter, cattle-breeder, or fisherman, and carries on these occupations according to local usage; he modifies his dress and adapts his religious beliefs to the locality he inhabits. In consequence of all this, the Russian peasant (not, be it noted, the trader) must be recognized as the best colonizer among the Aryans; he lives on the best terms with Ostiaks, Tartars, Buriats, and even with Red Indians when lost in the prairies of the American Far-West.

Three different branches, which may become three separate nationalities, can be distinguished among the Russians since the dawn of their history: the Great Russians, the Little Russians (Malorusses or Ukrainians), and the White Russians (the Bielorusses). These correspond to the two currents of immigration mentioned above, the northern and southern, with perhaps an intermediate one, the proper place of the White Russians not having as yet been exactly determined. The primary distinctions between these branches have been increased during the last nine centuries by their contact with different nationalities, – the Great Russians taking in Finnish elements, the Little Russians undergoing an admixture of Turkish blood, and the White Russians submitting to Lithuanian influence. Moreover, notwithstanding the unity of language, it is easy to detect among the Great Russians themselves two separate branches, differing from one another by slight divergences of language and type and deep diversities of national character, – the Central Russians and the Novgorodians; the latter extend throughout northern Russia into Siberia. They correspond, perhaps, to subdivisions mentioned by Nestor. It is worthy of notice, moreover, that many minor anthropological features can be distinguished both among the Great and Little Russians, depending probably on the assimilation of various minor subdivisions of the Ural-Altaians.

The Great Russians number about 42,000,000, and occupy in one block the space enclosed by a line drawn from the White Sea to the source of the western Düna, the Dnieper, and the Donetz, and thence, through the mouth of the Sura, by the Vetluga, to Mezeñ. To the east of this boundary they are mixed with Turco-Finns, but in the Ural Mountains they reappear in a compact body, and extend thence through southern Siberia and along the courses of the Lena and Amur. Great Russian nonconformists are disseminated among the Little Russians in Tchernigoff and Moghileff, and they reappear in greater masses in Novorossia, as also in northern Caucasia.

The Little Russians, who number about 17,000,000, occupy the Steppes of southern Russia, the southwestern slopes of the central plateau and those of the Carpathian and Lublin mountains, and the Carpathian plateau. The Sitch of the Zaporog Cossacks colonized the Steppes farther east, towards the Don, where they met with a large population of Great Russian runaways, constituting the present Don Cossacks. The Zaporog Cossacks, sent by Catherine II. to colonize the east coast of the sea of Azoff, constituted there the Black Sea and later the Kubaiñ Cossacks (part of whom, the Nekrasovtsy, migrated to Turkey). They have also peopled large parts of Stavropol and northern Caucasia.

The White Russians, mixed to some extent with Great and Little Russians, Poles, and Lithuanians, now occupy the upper parts of the western slope of the central plateau. They number about 4,300,000.

The Finnish stems, which in prehistoric times extended from the Obi all over northern Russia, even then were subdivided into Ugrians, Permians, Bulgarians, and Finns proper, who drove back the previous Lapp population from what is now Finland, and about the 7th century penetrated to the south of the Gulf of Finland, in the region of the Lives and Kors, where they mixed to some extent with the Lithuanians and Letts.

At present the stems of Finnish origin are represented in Russia by the following: (a) the Western Finns; the Tavasts, in central Finland; the Kvanes, in northwestern Finland; the Karelians, in the east, who also occupy the lake-regions of Olonetz and Archangel, and have settlements in separate villages in Novgorod and Tver; the Izhora and Vod, which are local names for the Finns on the Neva and the southeastern coast of the Gulf of Finland; the Esthes in Esthonia and northern portion of Livonia; the Lives on the Gulf of Riga; and the Kors, mixed with the Letts; (b) the Northern Finns, or Lapps, in northern Finland and on the Kola peninsula, and the Samoyedes in Archangel; (c) the Volga Finns, or rather the old Bulgarian branch, to which belong the Mordvinians (q.v.) and perhaps the Tcheremisses in Kazañ, Kostroma, and Vyatka, who are also classified by some authors with the following: (d) the Permians, or Cis-Uralian Finns, including the Votiaks on the east of Vyatka, the Permians in Perm, the Zyrians in Vologda, Archangel, Vyatka, and Perm, and the Tcheremisses; (e) the Ugrians, or Trans-Uralian Finns, including the Voguls on both slopes of the Urals, the Ostiaks in Tobolsk and partly in Tomsk, and the Madjares, or Ugrians.

The Turco-Tartars in European Russia number about 3,600,000. The following are their chief subdivisions. (1) The Tartars, of whom three different stems must be distinguished: (a) the Kazañ Tartars on both banks of the Volga, below the mouth of the Oka, and on the lower Kama, penetrating also farther south in Ryazañ, Tamboff, Samara, Simbirsk, and Penza; (b) the Tartars of Astrakhanat the mouth of the Volga; and (c) those of the Crimea, a great many of whom have recently emigrated to Turkey. There are, besides, a certain number of Tartars from the southeast in Minsk, Grodno, and Vilua. (2) The Bashkirs, who inhabit the slopes of the southern Urals, that is, the Steppes of Ufa and Orenburg, extending also into Perm and Samara. (3) The Tchuvashes, on the right bank of the Volga, in Kazañi and Simbirsk. (4) The Mescheriaks, a tribe of Finnish origin which formerly inhabited the basin of the Oka, and, driven thence during the 15th century by the Russian colonizers, immigrated into Ufa and Perm, where they now live among Bashkirs, having adopted their religion and customs. (5) The Tepters, also of Finnish origin, settled among Tartars and Bashkirs, together with the Mescheriaks, also in Samara and Vyatka. They have adopted the religion and customs of the Bashkirs, from whom they can hardly be distinguished. The Bashkirs, Mescheriaks, and Tepters have rendered able service to the Russian Government against the Kirghizes, and until 1863 they constituted a separate Bashkir and Mescheriak Cossacks army, employed for service in the Kirghiz Steppe. (6) The Kirghizes, whose true abodes were in Asia, in the Ishim and Kirghiz Steppe; but one section of them crossed the Urals and occupied the Steppes between the Urals and the Volga. Only the Horde of Bukeeff inhabits European Russia, northeast of Astrakhan, the remainder belonging toTurkestan and Siberia.

The Mongolian race is represented in Russia by the Lamaite Kalmuks, who inhabit the Steppes of Astrakhan between the Volga, the Don, and the Kuma. They immigrated to the mouth of the Volga from Dzungaria, in the 17th century, driving out the Tartars and the Nogais, and after many wars with the Don Cossacks, followed by treaties of mutual assistance for military excursions, one part of them was taken in by the Don Cossacks, so that even now there are among these Cossacks several Kalmuk sotnias or squadrons. They live for the most part in tents, supporting themselves by cattle-breeding, and partly by agriculture.

The [CAE ed. non-] Semitic race is represented in Russia by upwards of 3,000,000 Jews and 3,000 Karaites. The Jews first entered Poland from Germany during the crusades, and soon spread through Lithuania, Courland, the Ukraine, and, in the 18th century, Bessarabia. The rapidity with which they peopled certain towns and whole provinces was really prodigious. Thus, from having been but a few dozens at Odessa some eighty years since, they make now one-third of its population (73,400 out of 207,000). The law of Russia prohibits them from entering Great Russia, only the wealthiest and most educated enjoying this privilege; nevertheless they are met with everywhere, even on the Urals. Their chief abodes, however, continue to be Poland, the western provinces of Lithuania, White and Little Russia, and Bessarabia. In Russian Poland they are in proportion of 1 to 7 inhabitants. In Kovno, Vilna, Moghileff, Grodno, Volhynia, Podolia, and probably also in Bessarabia and Kherson, they constitute, on the average, 10 to 16 percent of the population, while in separate districts the proportion reaches 30 to 36 percent (50.5 in Tchaussy). Organized as they are into a kind of community for mutual protection and mutual help (the Kahal), they soon become masters of the trade wherever they penetrate. In the villages they are mostly innkeepers, intermediaries in trade, and pawnbrokers. In many towns most of the skilled laborers and a great many of the unskilled (for instance, the grain-porters at Odessa and elsewhere) are Jews. In the 16 western provinces of Russia they numbered 2,843,400 in 1883, and about 432,000 in five Polish provinces. Less than 600,000 of them inhabit villages, the remainder being concentrated in towns.

The Karaites differ entirely from the Jews both in worship and in mode of life. They, too, are inclined to trade, but also successfully carry on agriculture. Those inhabiting the Crimea speak Tartar, and the few who are settled in western Russia speak Polish. They are on good terms with the Russians.

Of West Europeans, only the Germans attain considerable numbers (upwards of a million) in European Russia. In the Baltic provinces they constitute the ennobled landlord class, and that of tradesmen and artisans in towns. Considerable numbers of Germans, also tradesmen and artisans, were scattered throughout many of the larger towns of Russia as early as the 16th century, and to a much greater extent in the 18th century, German artisans having been invited by the Government to settle in Russia, and their numbers having steadily increased since. Finally, numbers of Germans were invited in 1762 to settle in southern Russia, as separate agricultural colonies, which gradually extended in the Don region and in northern Caucasia. Protected as they were by the right of self-government, exempted from military service, and endowed with considerable allotments of good land, these colonies are much wealthier than the neighboring Russian peasants from whom they have adopted the slowly modified village community. They are chiefly Lutherans, but many of them belong to other religious sects, – Anabaptists, Moravians, Mennonites (about 40,000). In certain districts (Akkerman, Odessa, Berdiansk, Kamyshin, Novouzensk) they constitute from 10 to 40 percent of the total population. The Swedes, who number about 300,000 in Finland, hardly reach 12,000 in European Russia, mostly in the Baltic provinces.

The Roumanians (Moldavians) number not less than 800,000, and are still increasing. They inhabit the Governments of Bessarabia, Podolia, Kherson, and Ekaterinoslaff. In Bessarabia they constitute from one-fourth to three-fourths of the population of certain districts. On the whole, the Novorossian governments (Bessarabia, Kherson, Ekaterinoslaff, and Taurida) exhibit the greatest variety of population. Little and Great Russians, Roumanians, Bulgarians, Serbs, Germans, Greeks, Frenchmen, Poles, Tartars, and Jews are mixed together and scattered about in small colonies, especially in Bessarabia. Of course, the Greeks inhabit chiefly the towns, where they carry on trade, as also do the Armenians, scattered through the towns of Southern Russia, and appearing in larger numbers only in the district of Rostoff (10 percent of population).

However great the variety of nationalities inhabiting European Russia, its ethnological composition is much simpler than might at first sight be supposed. The Russians – Great, Little, and White – largely prevail over all others, both numerically and as respects the territories they occupy in compact bodies. Central Russia is almost purely Great Russian, and represents a compact body of more than 30,000,000 inhabitants with but 1 to 5 percent of admixture of other nationalities. The governments on the Dnieper (Kieff, Volhynia, Tchernigoff, Podolia, and Poltava), as also the adjoining districts of Kharkoff, Voronezh, Kursk, and Don, are Little Russian, or Ukrainian, with but a slight admixture of White and Great Russian, and some 12 percent of Jews. The Poles there number only 3 to 6 percent of the population – chiefly landholders – and are hated by the Ukrainians.

Moghileff, Vitebsk, and Minsk are White Russian, the Poles constituting only 3 percent of the population (16 in Miusk). In other Bielorussian provinces, the White Russians are mixed either with Lithuanians (Vilna), or Ukrainians (Grodno), or Great Russians (Smolensk), and their relations to Polish landlords are no better than in the Ukraine. The Lithuanians prevail in Kovno, where they are 80 percent of the population, the remainder being chiefly Jews (10 percent), Poles (3 percent), Great Russians (3 percent), Germans, etc.

In the Baltic provinces (Esthonia, Livonia, and Courland) the prevailing population is Esthonian, Curouian, or Lettish, the Germans (landlords, or tradesmen and artisans in towns) being respectively only 3.5, 6.8 and 7.6 percent of the population. In the three provinces, Riga included, they hardly reach 120,000 out of 1,800,000 inhabitants. The relations of the Esthes and Letts to their landlords are anything but friendly. [The Esthes certainly seem to be the Aestii of Tacitus’ Germania, who dwelt on the Baltic in early Roman times. The Letts were used by the Bolsheviks in large numbers as mercenaries against the Russians whom they subjected.]

The northern governments of St. Petersburg (apart from the capital), Olouetz, and Archangel contain an admixture of from 12 to 28 percent of Karelians, Samoyedes, and Zyrians, the remainder being Great Russians. In the east and southeast provinces of the Volga (Nijni, Simbirsk, Samara, Penza, and Saratoff) the Great Russians again prevail (88 to 65 percent), the remainder being chiefly Mordvinians, rapidly Russifying, as also Tartars, Tchuvashes, and Bashkirs, Germans in Samara and Saratoff; and Little Russians in the lastnamed. Only in Kazañ and Astrakhan do the Great Russians number less than one-half of the aggregate population (42-43 percent). In the Ural provinces of Perm and Vyatka Great Russians are again in the majority (92 and 81 percent), the remainder being a variety of Finno-Tartars. It is only in the southern Ural governments (Uralsk, Orenburg, Ufa) that the admixture of a variety of Turco-Tartars – of Kirghizes in Uralsk (23 percent), Bashkirs in Orenburg and Ufa (22 and 23 percent), and less important stems – becomes considerable, reducing the number of Great Russians respectively to 72, 67, and 32 percent of the aggregate population of these three provinces.

Of the Turco-Tartars of eastern Russia, the Bashkirs often revolted against Russian rule, and the traffic in Bashkir lands, recently carried on by the Orenburg administration, certainly does not tend to reconcile them. The Tcheremisses have often joined the Bashkirs in their revolts, but are rapidly losing their nationality. As regards the other Turco- and Finno-Tartars, the Mordvinians really have been assimilated to the Russians; the Moslem Tartars of Kazañ lived till recently on excellent terms with their Russian neighbors and would have continued to do so had no attempts been made to interfere with their land-laws.

In western Russia, while an antipathy exists between Ukrainians and Poles, the Russian Government, by its harassing interference in religious, educational, and economical matters, has become antagonistic, not only to the Poles, but also to the Ukrainians; printing in Ukrainian is prohibited, and ‘Russification’ is being carried on among Ukrainians by the same means as those employed in Poland. The same is true with the Esthes and Letts, whom the Government, while countenancing them to some extent in their antipathy to the German aristocracy, has not yet found means to conciliate ....”

Somewhere in all of this Russian history are to be found a good portion of the tribe of Benjamin. While we are interested in finding the Benjamites among this Russian history, a divergent subject came to the fore which is worth touching upon. I refer to:

The Karaites differ entirely from the Jews both in worship and in mode of life. They, too, are inclined to trade, but also successfully carry on agriculture.” This would suggest that there may be a racial strain among the jews who do not have the curse of Cain upon them! I checked with Heinrich Graetz’s History of the Jews, vol. 3, p.134, and it says this about the Karaites in part: “... placed the chief of the party and his adherents under a ban of excommunication and excluded them from the pale of Judaism ...” Of course, further research on this subject of the Karaites would be highly advised! Like many other jews of Eastern Europe, however, the Karaites seem to range in features from blond to arab types. I have introduced the names of many strange geographic regions, countries, provinces, cities, towns and many different tribes of people living within them. In the next lesson, WTL #183, I will attempt to sort most of them out!