- Project Runeberg -  Through the Caucasus to the Volga /
128

(1931) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Gerald C. Wheeler - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH THE CAtJCASUS TO THE VOLGA
128
Kasi-Mullah himself, the other by Shamyl, rushed
forward with the war-cry: "Allah-Akbar, lia-il
allahu!" ("God is great, there is no god but God !’ ’)
At the sight of these yelling ranks already sure of
victory, the defenders, who had never before seen
or heard anything of the kind, were overcome with
fear and began to waver. Then the towering figure
of Pakhu-Bikhé put herself at their head with
drawn sword and flaming eyes. "Avars," she
shouted, "you are not worthy of bearing arms. If
you are afraid, hand them over to us women, and
save yourselves behind our skirts !" Goaded by
these scornful words, the defenders rallied just as
the foe came swarming over the breastworks, and
they drove them back with heavy losses. The
Avars who had joined the Murids now withdrew,
and these latter were put to flight, leaving 200 dead,
many wounded, and 60 prisoners. Shamyl was for a
time in great danger of being killed by his excited
fellows, but was saved by a dervish. This was the first
of his many dangerous rescues, which to the super
stitious mountain-dwellers were a proof that he
was Allah’s chosen one for carrying out his work
on earth. Hadji Murad, who afterwards became
so well known and was to be so dangerous an
opponent for the Russians, gathered up the banners
and ensigns left behind by the Murids on the
battlefield, and sent them to Tiflis as proof of the
Avars’ faithfulness towards Russia. Kasi-Mullah
withdrew in confusion with his men to Ghimri,
and proclaimed that this sad defeat was Allah’s
punishment on the people for their lack of faith

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