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rickety bench with the little wild beast
with the long mane and tail in it, and
the large wild man in the caftan, the
beard, and the boots, bestriding where the
splashboard ought to have been, but wasn't
I have not the slightest idea. However, with
a bump, some jolts, and some screams, my
luggage was heaped on one droschky, and I
on another; then everybody had some
copecks given themincluding an official
in Hessian boots, who suddenly appeared
from a back-door in the yard (I really
conjectured it to be the dust-hole) who demanded
seventy-five, in French, haughtily, who received
them very unthankfully, and who, saying
something to another official, dressed in grey (he
had five copecks), which I suppose was Open
Sesame! disappeared majestically into the
dust-hole again. Open Sesame! let us out
into a dusty street; for I and the droschky-
drivers and the travellers had all been
prisoned within the custom-house's moated
grange till this, and it had pleased the man in
the dust-hole to let us out.

The phaeton droschkies, the double-bodied
droschkies, the calêche droschkies had all
driven away hotelwards through the dustI
did hope that Miss Wapps might be well
bitten that same night; and I was alone with
the droschkies, the dust, and the Petersen's
bit of paper. There was dust on either side,
and dust beneath, and dust behind us, and
dust before, and nothing more, save the
occasional vision of the luggage-droschky a-head,
which was bumping up and down and in and
out of the pulverous cloud in a most
extraordinary manner. I now first became
acquainted with the fact, that as soon as a Russian
Ischvostchik gets on a tolerably long roadway,
he gives his horse his head, and throwing
up his own legs, yells with delight, and is
till he is compelled to heave-to by the
menacing halberd of a Boutotsniksupremely
happy. We were in the Perspective of
something or otherthe Dusty-Bobboff Perspective
I was inclined to call it at the timeand
the driver, anticipating with joy a quiet mile
or so of furious driving, suddenly gave the
vicious little brute he was driving his head,
following it with the usual performances of
leg-elevating, arm-flourishing, and yelling.
I decidedly thought that Ischvostchik had
gone mad. The horse being given his head,
took in addition his four shoes, his hocks, his
tail, and everything that was his, and made
good use of them, scrambling, tearing, pawing
along, and I almost was led to think
yelling as well as his maniacal driver. What
was I to do? What could I do, but catch
hold of the Ischvostchik, at last, quite
frantically by the shoulders, and entreat him to
stop. For a wonder, he understood me, as I
thought intuitively; but, as I afterwards
found, from my hurried Stop! stop! being
very like to the short, sharp Russian Stoï!

I have heard gentlemen who ride to
hounds talk of the remarkably fine burst
they have had after that carrion with the
bushy tail some November morning. I have
read the terribly grotesque epic of Miss
Kielmansegge and her golden leg; Bürger
has told me in Lenore how fast the dead
ride; I have seen some Derbies, Oaks, and
Doncasters; I have travelled by some express
trains; I have seen Mr. Turner's picture of
Hail, rain, steam, and speed; and now, if for
hail you will substitute dust, and for rain hot
wind, and for steam a wild horse, and
increase the speed as many times tenfold as
you like, you will have a picture of me in the
droschky, and the droschky itself flying
through the dusty Perspectives of Petersburg.

Over a bridge I know, where there was a
shrine-chapel, open at the four sides, where
people were worshipping. Then dust. Then
along a quay. More dust. And then the
seemingly interminable flight along Perspectives.
And at last, Heyde's.

A building, apparently about a third of
the size of the Bank of England, with the
Corinthian pilasters beaten flat, with a
hugeous blue signboard somewhat akin to
that dear old Barclay and Perkins one in the
England I may never see again; on this
signboard Heyde's with some of the unknown
tongue beneath. Beyond, over the way, and
some miles one either side, houses considerably
bigger than Heyde's, all painted either in
white or more glaring yellow, and with some
red but more green roofs.* And, save our
party, not a living soul to be seen. A
defection of one took place immediately from
our band, small as it was, the luggage
Ischvostchik feeling, no doubt, athirsthow
thirsty was I!—incontinently diving
down some stone steps into a semi-cellar
that yawned beneath Heyde's parlour
windows. Such half-cellarsnot level with
the pavement, and not at honest area depth
beneath itare common in the grandest
streets of Petropolis. The meanest little
shops crawl at the feet of gigantic buildings,
like Lazarus lying in his rags before Dives'
door. The cellar in which my Ischvostchik had
disappeared was, I was not slow in concluding,
a Vodki shop: first, from the strong spirituous
odour which exuded therefrom; next, from
the unmistakeable sign of a bunch of grapes
rudely carved in wood, and profusely gilt,
suspended over the doorway. And have
I not a right to call this a remarkable
people who keep grog-shops, and sell meat
pies in the basement of their palaces. I was

* Comparison, even with the diminution of a third, to
the vastness of the bank of England is of course a little
extravagant; but I wished to give the reader a notion,
there and then, of the astonishing size of even private
houses in St. Petersburg. The great imperial rule is
carried out even in architecture as in government. Aut
Cæsar, aut Ivan Ivanovitch, who is considerably less than
a nullity. In Russian houses there are but two classes
hovels and palaces. I know one lodging-house in St.
Petersburg, close to the Moscow Railway Terminus,
which has more than two thousand inmates.