- Project Runeberg -  Through the Caucasus to the Volga /
86

(1931) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Gerald C. Wheeler - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH THE CAUCASUS TO THE VOLGA
86
civilization had driven us onwards, and prevented
us from travelling slowly and stopping to take in
at our leisure all the manifold wonders wc had gone
through. Wc see and experience much, but it is
on the surface only; wc never get time to make
it our own and deepen our knowledge. It was with
a sharp feeling of how fleeting all is today that wc
drove across the bridge over the Terek, and then
up the broad main street of Vladikavkaz with rows
of lindens on each side.
It was some festival day or other, and there were
processions and demonstrations in the streets, with
great masses of people and speeches. Wc were met
by two envoys from Daghestan wearing the hand
some Caucasian dress, with the stiff coat {cherkeska)
—one in black, the other in gray, upright and
slender-waisted—and with beits carrying the beauti
fully worked daggers, broad strips of cartridges
on their chests, and the becoming lambskin cap.
They looked very splendid, and were to bring us
to Daghestan, the tram leaving in the afternoon.
Meanwhile wc were hospitably entertained in a
charming gentleman’s house.
Vladikavkaz lies about 700 metres above the
sea on both sides of the Terek, in the wide plain
that runs north from the foot of the mountains.
The town was founded in 1 784 at the starting-point
of the military road over the Caucasus, which the
Russians began building at that time. These many
good roads, which have been built by Russia in so
many places for overcoming and holding other
peoples under with her armies, have served a good

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