Images de page

vinces of Russia will be sealed up effectually. The Ukase is so important a document, and the observations upon it so illustrative of its operation, that we give them at length from the Times of Saturday last.

March 27.

I have now to call your attention to an extract from an Imperial Russian ukase, which I find in the St. Petersburgh Russian Gazette, which I received last week, relative to the erection of a Russian quarantine at the Soulineh mouth of the Danube.

Before making any observations upon it, I shall give you a literal translation of the extract:

"His Imperial Majesty, in consequence of a representation from the Minister of the Interior, made from a report of the GovernorGeneral of New Russia and Bessarabia, and conformably to a decision of the committee of Ministers, has been pleased augustly to order,-1st. To construct a quarantine at the Soulineh mouth of the river Danube, in two divisions; the one for pratique, at the extreme end of the Island Leti, to which the quarantine cordon has at present been advanced; and the other for suspicious vessels, on the Island of Georgi, with this provision, that this second division of the quarantine, not purifying any kind of merchandise, but sending them. either to the quarantines of Odessa or Ismail, should serve merely as a port for vessels prevented from proceeding on their voyage up the Danube, through contrary winds or the strength of the current; or wishing to receive a supply of provisions, or refit. Sometimes also it may receive from ships, merchants, their clerks, or other passengers, who, meeting with delay in their journey by water, should wish to save time, to hold quarantine on the spot, and afterwards proceed to Ismail by land, over the island of Leti. It may also receive the crews of vessels which have been shipwrecked on those islands. The division for pratique will overlook vessels proceeding from healthy ports; and the second division will overlook vessels which

[ocr errors]

are in quarantine. Both these divisions to be under one director, in order that vessels in pratique should have no communication with those in quarantine. This quarantine, in so far as regards the Customs, must be regulated by the same laws as the present quarantine of Bazertcheck. 2nd. This last port, established by the ukase of the 26th of October, 1832, and situated at the Kilian mouth, as it will be found now quite superfluous, is to be evacuated. This, the will of his Imperial Majesty, has been published in an ukase of the Senate, dated the 7th of February, 1836."-Extracted from the Commercial Gazette of St. Petersburgh, No. 21, published the 18th of February, 1836.

Such a barefaced and impudent aggression, and executed so coolly in the face of all Europe, I have seldom heard of; and I trust that our Cabinet will make immediate and strong representations to the Russian Government, who have now evidently thrown off the mask they have worn so long Measures should also be taken to rouse the sleeping energies of Austria, whose interests are more directly compromised by this violent measure than those of any other country. Now, also, the eyes of Turkey may be completely opened to the astute and deceitful policy of their rapacious neighbours; who, under the mask of friendship, have pursued ever since the peace of Adrianople, with the most uncompromising obstinacy, a deep-laid plan of gradual, but ultimate, occupation of all her European provinces.

It is necessary for me to point out to you the impediments that this measure will throw in the way of our commerce: indeed, a more ingenious plan to have the complete command of the navigation of the Danube, without the odious parade of forts or gunboats, could not have been conceived. Under the pretext, forsooth, of solicitude for the public good, they are about to subject all ships to the mysterious, arbitrary, and severe regulations of a quarantine, on a territory to which they have no right, and the inutility of which is more than proved from the absurd and confused reasons given in the above Ukase for its establishment. The quarantine on the Georgian is, they say, to enable vessels in quarantine to anchor, in the event of contrary winds, to receive a supply of provisions, and to refit. What vessel will refit or buy stores at the mouth of the Danube, within 24

hours' sail of Odessa, three days' sail of Constantinople, and three days' sail of Ibrail and Galacz ? And there is no necessity of a quarantine in order to have a safe and convenient anchorage within the Soulineh bar at all times. It does not require also any depth of penetration to foresee, that under the pretence of building a quarantine, fortifications may be traced out; and to mount them with guns, in any emergency, is an affair of 24 hours' labour. No doubt, as this Imperial Ukase has been published in St. Petersburgh, our Cabinet, long ere now, will have been informed of it; but I thought it judicious to make you aware of its existence, and to draw your attention to the influence it will have on the commercial interests of Great Britain.

On second thoughts, I have cut out the Gazette, and send you the original, of which I have given you above a translation, in order that there may be no doubt as to its authenticity.

Believe me, my dear Sir, your's, very truly,


THE importance which Russia attaches to the commerce of the Euxine and that of the countries of Asia which are supplied from the ports of that sea -the means which she has resorted to for the purpose of embarrassing the commerce of every other nation which competes with her own,-and the persevering assiduity with which she pursues the schemes she has projected, for impeding, and, if possible, annihilating every trade, whether in manufactured commodities, or in raw produce, which appeared to her to interfere, or to threaten to interfere with her own, in any of the markets of Europe or Asia,--are curiously illustrated in a work, which we are happy to see is about to be made accessible to the English reader by a translation. The work we allude to is entitled-" Memoire sur le "Commerce des Port de la Nouvelle Russie, de la "Moldavie et de la Valachie par Jules de Hage"meister, 1835, à Odessa et à Simpheropole."

It will not escape observation, that the means by which Russia has endeavoured to relieve herself from the disadvantage of competition, has been rather to throw embarrassments in the way of her rival, than to give additional facilities to those who resort to her markets; and that, in the true spirit of her policy, she enters upon commerce, not as a fair competitor, but as a jealous antagonist.

We cannot better introduce Mr. Hagemeister to our readers than in his own words.

[ocr errors]

Employed by the administration of New Russia, the author of this work was commanded by the Governor-general, Count Woronzow, to visit, in the course of the year 1834, all the northern ports of the Black Sea, and of the Sea of Azof, from the Danube to the Don. The local authorities were, at the same time, instructed to furnish him with all the information he might require of them. The report which, in consequence of this inspection, was presented to the Governor-general, is now delivered, without any alteration, to the public; and consequently the opinions there advanced can be looked upon as those of the author only. In the whole work there is nothing official but the figures."

« PrécédentContinuer »