Cartographica Neerlandica Map Text for Ortelius Map No. 162


Text, scholarly version, translated from the 1570 Latin (ABC), 1571 Latin, 1573 Latin (AB), 1574 Latin, 1575 Latin, 1579 Latin (AB), 1580/1589 German, 1584 Latin, 1588 Spanish, 1592 Latin, 1595 Latin, 1601 Latin, 1602 German, 1602 Spanish, 1603 Latin, 1606 English, 1608/1612 Italian, 1609/1612 Latin and 1609/1612//1641 Spanish editions:

162.1. {1570L(ABC){RUSSIA, Or rather THE EMPIRE OF THE GRAND DUKE OF MOSCOVIA
162.2. This map does not comprise all of Russia, for here are lacking Polonia and Lithuania, which are also contained under the name of Russia. But the whole Empire of the {1606E only{Grand}1606E only} duke of Moscovia is bound in the North by the frozen sea, in the East by the Tartars, in the South by the Turks {not in 1588S{and the Poles}not in 1588S}, and in the West it borders on Livonia {1606E has instead{Lithuania}1606E instead} and {not in 1606E{the kingdom of}not in 1606E} Sweden. All these regions and provinces have been described separately by Sigismundus baron of Herberstein, to whom we refer the studious reader. About the religion, habits, manners, and kind of life of this nation, we have from him willingly for you selected these few facts: In their religion they mostly follow the rites of the Greek church. Their priests take wives. They worship images in their churches.
162.3. When their children are baptised, they are three times entirely dipped into the water, but the water in the font is specifically consecrated anew for each individual child. Although by their rules they have a kind of {1606E only{auricular}1606E only} confession, yet the common people think it only pertains to princes and noblemen. Confession being ended, and penance being meted out according to the gravity of the offence, they sign themselves on the forehead and the breast with the sign of the cross, and with a loud cry they lament: Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on us. This is their common manner of prayer, for few can say the Pater noster [our Father].
162.4. {not in 1588S{They do take part in the sacrament of the [holy] supper of both kinds, mingling the bread with the wine, as if mingling the body with the blood. They administer the Lord's [holy] sacrament to children of seven years old, for at that age, they say, men start to sin}not in 1588S}. The better sort of men, after the communion ends, spend the festive days in riot and drunkenness, and revere in beautiful attire. The more common sort of people and servants mostly [resume] work and labour, saying that to be idle and stop working on a holy day is for gentlemen only. They do not believe in Purgatory but yet they pray for the dead. No one besprinkles himself with holy water, as this may only be done by the priest himself.
162.5. In Lent they fast for seven whole weeks altogether. They marry, and tolerate bigamy, but they question whether this is lawful matrimony. They allow divorces. They do not consider something to be adultery, except when one man takes another man's wife. The state of women in this country is most miserable. For they think that no [woman] can possibly be honest, unless she {1606E only{carries her house overhead like a snail, and}1606E only} is continually locked up indoors, or so watched that she never can go out. This is a wily and deceitful people, preferring to delight in servitude rather than in liberty.
162.6. All of them acknowledge to be the princes' servants. They are seldom at rest, for either they must make war on the Lithuanians, Livonians or Tartars. And if they are not employed in service for any wars, then they are placed in garrisons around their rivers {1606E only{{Don (also called}1606E only} Tanais {1606E only{by the ancients)}1606E only} and Occa to resist the robberies of the Tartars. They wear long gowns without any folds, with narrow sleeves after the Hungarian fashion. Boots also, mostly red and short, which hardly reach the knees, and under their shoes have iron studs. They tie their girdles not around their waists, but as low as their hips, so that their bellies become even more prominent. They do strict justice on thieves. Theft and manslaughter is seldom punished by death.
162.7. Their silver coins are not round but somewhat oblong, of an oval form {1580/1589G, 1588S, 1602G, 1602S, 1606E, 1608/1612I & 1609/1612/1641S only{like an egg}1580/1589G, 1588S, 1602G, 1602S, 1606E, 1608/1612I & 1609/1612/1641S only}. The country abounds with those rich and precious furs which from here are transported all over Europe. {not in 1608/1612I{It is almost everywhere full of woods}not in 1608/1612I}.
162.8. All these particulars we have drawn from the above-mentioned Sigismund. Of more things about this country you may read in Matthias Ó Michou, {1592L, not in 1602G, 1602S, & 1609/1612/1641S{[and] Alexander Gaguine}1592L, not in 1602G, 1602S & 1609/1612/1641S}, in a booklet on the Sarmatians, [in] Albert Crantz' Wandalia, [and in] Paulus Iovius of the Embassy of the Moscovites [writing] to pope Clement the seventh {1606E instead{eighth}1606E instead}. [And in] Albertus Campensis to the same Clement, as well as in the Persian journeys of Ambrosius Contarenus. But you should also read the first and second book of Bonfinius' first Decade of the history of Hungary}1570L(ABC), 1571L, 1573L(AB), 1574L, 1575L, 1579L(AB), 1580/1589G, 1584L & 1602G end here}, {1588S, 1602S & 1609/1612/1641S only{and about Moscovia by Antonius Possevinus of the Jesuits}1588S only, which ends here}{1592L{as also the first book of the life of Basilides written by Oderborne}1592L which ends here}, {1595L{together with the Chronicle of Saxony written by David ChytrŠus}1595L, 1601L, 1602S, 1603L, 1606E, 1609/1612L & 1609/1612/1641S end here}.
162.8a. {1608/1612I only{And recently, Francesco da Collo, ambassador of emperor Maximilian the first, has in the year 1518 printed this entire peace treaty [reprinted] in Padua in 1603 at Lorenzo Pasquati,in which he describes the entire journey geographically, and also the composition of a drink called medo or meduno, made in Moscow for adults, consisting of apples, strawberries and other coloured fruits, tasting like wine}1608/1612I only, which ends here}.

Vernacular text version, translated from the 1571/1573 Dutch, 1572/1573 German, 1572/1574 French, 1581 French, 1587 French, 1598 French and the 1598/1610/1613 Dutch editions:

162.9. {1571/1573D{The Empire of Russians | or Moscovia.
162.10. Russia has not entirely been depicted on the map, because it lacks the kingdom of Poland and the land of Lithuania which also belong to the realm of Russia. But here we have only [shown] all countries resorting under the duke of Moscovia (as we call him). He graces himself with the title of emperor of Russia. His empire extends from the Nordic sea to Poland and Lithuania, and to the Caspian Sea in the South, where he conquered the city of Astracan at the mouth of the river Volga, {1572/1573G only{where it empties into the Caspian sea}1572/1573G only} a few years ago.
162.11. In the East it has the river Ob and lake Kytaia bordering on the Tartars. In the West it extends to the kingdom of the Swedes, and Livonia, and we must fear (after the policy which we have seen, for he has in recent years annexed a great part of it), that he will soon fully conquer the rest of Livonia. About these countries under this emperor (as he calls him) and the peoples living in them, a very accurate description has been written by Sigismundus of Herberstein, who was sent there as ambassador on behalf of emperor Ferdinandus, from whose writings we have taken the following.
162.12. The inhabitants of this land mostly resemble the Greeks in their religion. Their priests are allowed to marry a woman. They worship statues in their churches. When they baptize their children, they plunge them three times under water, but they consacrate the water for each child separately. Although they practice confession as a habit, yet the common people do not feel that it is for them, but is only for important lords and rich people. When they have confessed and repented, doing penance for the sin they have committed, they will bless their forehead and breast with the sign of the cross, and they will lament in a wailing manner: IESUS CHRIST, son of God, have mercy on us.
162.13. This is commonly their prayer. For the Our-Father-who-Art-in-Heaven is known by only very few of them. They receive Holy Communion of both kinds, for they mix bread and wine intended as flesh and blood. Children from seven years [onwards] they give the Sacrament, saying that from that age people are capable of sinning. Holy days are celebrated by the lords and such people (after the service in church has been completed) by dressing up splendidly, showing themselves off, and by getting drunk. The common people and servants mostly continue their daily chores, saying that celebrations and being idle is only the work of highly placed lords.
162.14. They do not believe in purgatory, but yet say mass for the dead. Nobody sprinkles himself with holy water but they allow the priest to do the sprinkling. In the time of lent they fast for seven weeks in a stretch. They marry too, and also allow a man to marry a second wife, but this is hardly considered as a legal marriage. They also allow divorces. They only consider something as adultery if it concerns a married woman. Women have a very hard life there, because no woman is ever trusted to be honest unless she remains indoors, and is guarded there in such a way that she cannot go out. It is a wily and deceitful people, more at ease with servitude than liberty. They suffer and consider themselves their lords' slaves. They are seldom at rest, for they make war with the Lithuanians, or the Livonians, or the Tartars, and if they do not make war, they guard the river Don (once called Tanais) and the river Occa against the Tartars in garrisons, so that these do not invade their country.
162.15. They wear long unpleated skirts and narrow sleeves in the Hungarian manner, and have red boots, very short ones, which hardly reach their knees. Their shoe soles are studded with iron. They do not belt themselves at their belly, but just above the hips, covering their privy parts, and arrange their belt in such a manner that their belly protrudes. They mete out justice severely against hooligans and robbers. But theft or manslaughter seldom leads to the death penalty. They have silver coins, not round but oblong, like a fried egg.
162.16. This country is full of woods, and flat without mountains. And it has many costly furs, which are exported from here all over Europe}1571/1573D, 1572/1573G, 1572/1574F, 1581F, 1587F, 1598F & 1598/1610/1613D end here}.

Bibliographical sources


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