Excerpt: ... the land which was common to the village. They could, the count said, be sold, but in point of fact never were sold except with the land. "It's a bad system, and I wish that they were as free is your laborers are in England." "Of course our people cannot be sold," Jack said, "but after all there's not so much difference in that ...
Excerpt: ... the land which was common to the village. They could, the count said, be sold, but in point of fact never were sold except with the land. "It's a bad system, and I wish that they were as free is your laborers are in England." "Of course our people cannot be sold," Jack said, "but after all there's not so much difference in that respect, for if an estate changes hands, they work for the new owner just as yours do." "Yes, but your laborers cannot be killed or even flogged by their masters with impunity." "No, I should think not," Jack exclaimed. "We should have a revolution in no time, if masters were to try that sort of thing." "I fear that we shall have one too, some day," the count said, "unless the serfs are emancipated. The people are terribly ignorant, but even among them some sort of enlightenment is going on, and as they know better they will refuse to live and to work as mere beasts of burden." "Will they be better off, sir, than before?" Dick Hawtry asked. "I have heard my father say that the negroes in the West Indian islands are worse off than they were in the days when they were slaves. They will not work except just enough to procure themselves means of living, and they spend the rest of their lives lying about and smoking." "It would no doubt be the same thing here," the count said, "for a time. The Russian peasant is naturally extremely ignorant and extremely fond of 'vodka.' Probably at first he would be far worse off than at present. He would be content to earn enough to live and to get drunk upon, and wide tracts of land would remain untilled. But it is of the future we must think; and who can doubt that in the future, Russia, with a free people and free institutions, with her immense resources and enormous population, must become the grandest empire on earth?" CHAPTER XIV. A SUSPECTED HOUSEHOLD Cheerful though...
New -1 jacket. Our hero survives adventures at Gibraltar and the battles of Alma, Bacalava, and Inkerman, but is captured and is involved in the death of a Russian official. He escapes, goes through the fall of Sebastapol, and ultimately marries a wealthy Russian girl.
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