- Project Runeberg -  Through the Caucasus to the Volga /
118

(1931) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Gerald C. Wheeler - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH THE CAUCASUS TO THE VOLGA
118
But Hamzad thought in his heart the while that
death was upon him ; he could hope no more.
High in the heavens he saw the birds flying and
called to them : "O birds of the air ! Give our
last greeting, our ultimate salutation, to the Naib
of Ghikh, Akhverdi Mahomå. Greet also from us
the beautiful ones, the damsels fair, and tell them
that our proud breasts serve to stop Russian bullets
—tell them that our wish was to rest after death in
the graveyard at Ghikh, where our sisters would
have wept on our tombs, and all the people would
have sorrowed—but God grants no such grace.
Not the sobbing of our sisters will be heard above
us, but the howling of famished wolves. Not
relations in troops will gather round, but a flock of
ravens swart.
"And tell them too, on the Tcherkess hill, in the
land of the Giaour, bare blades in hand, wc lic
dead. The ravens pick out our eyes, the wolves tear
our flesh."
The picture this description gives us of the way of
thinking and views on life of this people is con
firmed by the whole of their history. Should not a
people of such metal as this be useful for something
higher and greater than war and destruction?
Wc shall reach a still better understanding of
these mountain peoples from a short account of
that religious movement known as Muridism,
which brought the mountain tribes of Daghestan
and the Chechens together, and raised them up
against the Russians, and of their heroic and
stubborn struggle against superior numbers.

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