- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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best be described as of about the middle height, or a
little under it.*
I cannot say that they presented any marked Asiatic
or Mongolian features, such as prominent cheek-bones
or very oblique eyes. They were for the most part
almost beardless, and dark, with long black hair ;
some of their faces were quite handsome, even ac
cording to our taste. There is probably a considerable
admixture of Russian blood in these people, and
perhaps of other blood from the south as well. Shitkov
says that he met in Yamal two men of the Okotetta
and Lamdu tribes, who were tall and powerfully built,
with sharp features and big, straight and even slightly
aquiline noses. The same type is of frequent occur
rence among the Samoyedes farther south, as his guide
informed him. Shitkov says that such types are also
to be found occasionally among the Voguls. They
remind one of northern people of the so-called palæ
asiatic group, and both Samoyedes and Voguls may
have received some admixture from people of that
group, such as the Yenisei-Ostiaks.
The old man of the party we met here had, as I said,
some hair on his chin, and looked as if he might have a
good deal of Russian blood in him. On the fishing
places along the Obi especially, where Russian workmen
and Samoyedes live together, there must be considerable
opportunity for this mixture of race.
While we were occupied with our visitors, it became
clearer and we saw a broad channel to the north
* Mr. Kai Donner informs me that according to measurements he
has been able to take of various Samoyede tribes, the height of the
Samoyedes varies between 5 ft. 3 in. and 5 ft. 5 in., while that of the
Ugrian Ostiaks, for instance, often reaches 5 ft. 7 in. The cerebral
index of the Samoyedes he found to average about 82 (they are thus
not very brachycephalic, rather mesocephalic), while that of the
Ostiaks was as much as 89, which is unusually brachycephalic.

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