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From Household Words.
PETER THE GREAT IN ENGLAND.
companied the visits of kings and emperors and their ambassadors. He came to this country from the Hague with Vice-Admiral THERE was to be seen till lately in the Pal- Mitchell, and arrived among us on Tuesday, ace at Hampton Court, a fine full-length the eleventh of January, sixteen hundred portrait of a beardless young man (inten- and ninety-seven-eight. His arrival was tionally beardless), in armor, with a broad soon made public, but the privacy of his visit and vigorous expression of face, with large was still as far as possible maintained. On eyes that betray a fixed determination of pur- the day after his arrival he went incognito in pose, and, I must add, a liking for strong a hackney-coach to Kensington, to see Wildrinks. I refer to the portrait of Peter the liam the Third and his court at dinner, Great, which Sir Godfrey Kneller painted dining in public being then a custom still for King William the Third during the brief lingering about royalty. On the following visit of three months which the Czar paid to day he called on the Marquis of Caermarthen England in the exceeding sharp and cold in Leicester Square, then an invalid, having season of the year sixteen hundred and hurt his leg at the fire which, only a week ninety-eight. Kneller was never happier before the Czar arrived among us, ceased to than in this picture. He knew his strength; make Whitehall the palace of a sovereign. and in the background a sea-scape (as On the Friday following he received a visit painters affect to call such things) -he ob- from King William the Third. It was a tained the assistance of the younger Valder- private visit, made by the king in the coach velde, a master in the treatment of maritime of the Earl of Romney, the brother of Algermatters. This picture is now, I believe, at non Sidney, and the handsome Sidney of De Buckingham Palace. Prince Albert took it Grammont's Memoirs. The Czar accompaaway during the visit to England of the late nied the king in Lord Romney's coach as far Emperor Nicholas; but his royal highness, as Whitehall, where he stepped into his own now that the case is altered, may perhaps carriage, and, attended by the Guards, went think proper to return it to its old quarters. in his robes to the House of Peers. The Peter was in his twenty-sixth year when he first set foot in England. He had been learning ship-building at Amsterdam, and his visit to England was for no other avowed purpose than that of improving his mechanical skill by steady labor in our naval dockyards. He came among us with the approbation of King William the Third: houses were hired for him and his rough retinue, and paid for by the king.
His first London lodging was in Norfolk Street, in the Strand, then a newly-built street, and one of the best inhabited streets in London. Some red-brick houses of Peter's time still exist. His second house- I might almost call it his country house was at Saye's Court, in Deptford, on the banks of the Thames, contiguous to the Royal Dockyard-then in the tenancy of Evelyn, author of the Sylva (now better known by his Memoirs), but recently sub-let by him to no less a person than the bluff and brave Admiral Benbow.
penny-a-liner of the time, from whom we derive these particulars, adds: "His Czarish majesty was there, it is said, incognito." But this I see reason to doubt.
Peter the Great while in England was as shy and unwilling to be seen as Peter the Wild Boy. He was present at a ball given at Kensington by King William in honor of the birthday of the Princess Anne, afterwards Queen; or rather, he may be said to have seen the ball, for his shyness confined him to a small room, from which he could see without being seen. When he saw King William on his throne in the House of Lords (a sight he had expressed a particular wish to see), it was not from the gallery nor from below the bar of the house, but from a gutter in the housetop, from which he was enabled to peep through a window into the house. He retired from this unpleasant point of view sooner, it is said, than he intended; for he made so ridiculous a figure (says Lord Dartmouth, who was present) that neither king nor peers could forbear laughing.
The chief native attendant of the Czar bore name that has lately become familiar enough in English ears: he was called Prince He was taken to all our London sights at Menzikoff. His English attendant was Os-that time of any moment. To the lions and borne Marquis of Caermarthen, afterwards armories in the Tower; to the monuments the second Duke of Leeds. The marquis was a naval officer of talent and distinction; -and this selection by the king was in every way appropriate.
His visit was one of entire privacy, and consequently without those courtly ceremonies attending his arrival which usually ac
and wax figures in Westminster Abbey; to Lambeth Palace; to the masquerade on the last night of the Temple revels; and to the two theatres in Drury Lane and Dorset Gardens. He was chiefly attracted by the Tower and the performances at Drury Lane. The wild beasts and implements of war were
adapted to his rougher nature, while the when, in eighteen hundred and fourteen, on charms of a Miss Cross, the original Miss the visit of the allied sovereigns, he passed Hoyden, in Vanbrugh's Relapse, and the through Godalming to Portsmouth, to return first actress who had Miss prefixed to her to the capital of the Czar Peter! name in playbills, were so engaging that the rough Czar of Russia became enamored of her beauty. Of this Miss Cross the story is told in the Spectator, that when she first arived in the Low Countries, she was not computed to be so handsome as Madam van Brisket by near half a ton. There is a fine old mezzotinto which still preserves to us the beautiful features that won the youthful heart of Peter the Great.
He did not speak English, nor is he known to have been desirous of learning it. Few of his sayings have therefore been preserved. Three, however, have reached us." He told Admiral Mitchell that he considered the condition of an English admiral happier than that of a Czar of Russia. To King William he observed, "If I were the adviser of your majesty, I should counsel you to remove your court to Greenwich, and to convert St. James' once more into an hospital." When in Westminster Hall, he inquired who the busy gentlemen were in wigs and gowns; and being told they were lawyers "Lawyers!" said he; "why, I have but two in my whole dominions, and I design to hang one of them the moment I get home.
There was a natural curiosity among the English people to see a sovereign from so remote a country as Muscovy; and Overton, the printseller (he is immortalized by Pope), took advantage of this desire, and borrowing a plate from Holland of the effigies of his Czarish majesty, immediately worked off sufficient impressions to satisfy the public. Other proofs of his popularity have been preserved. A song in praise of the Czar of Muscovy was performed on Thursday, the tenth of February, in the Music Room of York Buildings, the Hanover Square Rooms of the then London; and the History of the Ancient and Present State of Muscovy, by Abel Roper, was advertised to be published this term- -the lawyer then, as indeed long after, materially regulating the London season. I have discovered the name of the opera which the Czar went to hear. It was Beaumont and Fletcher's Prophetess, or the History of Diocletian, with alterations and ad ditions, after the manner of an opera, by Betterton the great actor. It was a new opera. The music was by Purcell, the dances by Mr. Priest, and the scenes, machinery, and clothes were costly and effective. It was a perfectly successful piece, and there was enough in it to attract the Czar, to whom everything of the kind was an entire novelty.
The Marquis of Caermarthen was very attentive to the wishes of the Czar. On Tuesday last (records the penny-a-liner of the period) the Marquis of Caermarthen treated the Czar of Muscovy in a splendid manner. He took him to Chatham to a A new entertainment was advertised for launch, and to Spithead to a naval review. Thursday, the seventeenth of February, sixThey went to Spithead by the old Ports- teen hundred and ninety-seven-eight. It mouth road, and returned the same way, was at Exeter Change, in the Strand, and resting at Godalming for a day, where (at was called (corruptly enough) A Redoubt the King's Arms Inn, in the High Street) after the Venetian manner, "where," they had two meals: breakfast and dinner. continues the advertisement, "there will be The bills of fare on the occasion have been some considerable Basset Banks and a variepreserved by Wanley, the learned keeper of ty of other entertainment." No person was Lord Oxford's library. They were thirteen to be admitted without a mask. Tickets at table (an uncomfortable number), and were to be had at the well-known chocolate twenty-one in all. At breakfast they had houses, Ozinda's and White's, and the enterhalf a sheep, a quarter of lamb, ten pullets, tainment was to begin exactly at ten o'clock twelve chickens, nine quarts of brandy, six at night. Peter came from Deptford to quarts of mulled wine, seven dozen eggs, London to see this Venetian importation; with salad in proportion. At dinner they but he found it suppressed, with six constahad five ribs of beef (weight three stone), one bles at the door to prohibit the performance. sheep (weight fifty-six pounds three-quar- To relieve his disappointment -so a Mr. ters), a shoulder of lamb, and a loin of veal Bertie writes to Dr. Charlett of Oxford — he boiled, eight pullets, eight rabbits, two dozen fell to drinking hard at one Mr. Morley's; and a half of sack, and one dozen of claret. and the Marquis of Caermarthen, it being Here is a bill reminding us by its locality late, resolved to lodge him at his brother-inand rabbits of Mary Tofts, who has given an law's. Here (and still with the Marquis) he unhappy celebrity to the pleasant little post- dined the next day-drank a pint of sherry town of Godalming in Surrey. I have often and a bottle of brandy for his morning wondered if the story of the Czar's two meals draught; after that, about eight more botwas remembered by the Emperor Alexander tles of sack, and so went to the playhouse.
There was a cordial at this time fit for the see this ruler of barbaric millions. closet of any person of quality, and very pop- Quakers were, of course, the most pressing. ular, if we may believe the public advertise- William Penh (he lived in Norfolk Street) ments, called Nectar Ambrosia, the highest had an interview with him. The brother-incordial we are assured by the proprietor law of Robert Barclay (the apologist) man-that ever was made in England. It was aged to converse with him on Quaker tenets, prepared from the richest spices, herbs, and and to obtain his acceptance of two copies of flowers, and drawn from right Nantz brandy. Barclay's book. A teasing question was put On Wednesday, the ninth of February, the by the Czar to Barclay's brother-in-law. author of the new cordial called Nectar Am-Of what use can you be in any kingdom brosia, so much in vogue of late, presented or government, seeing you will not bear arms the Czar of Muscovy with a large bottle of it and fight?" The Czar was inclined to look curiously wrought in flint, which his Czarish upon them as Jesuits, but altered his opinmajesty very kindly accepted, and he, the ion, and with his attendants in the English prince, and the rest of his nobles very highly costume of the time, attended a Quaker approved of it. The proprietor was Mr. meeting in White Hart Court, in GraceJohn How, living in Ram's Head Yard, in church Street: in that court where, only a Fenchurch Street; a man no doubt of many few years before, Fox the founder of the sect trades, for I find that he was the publisher had died. His presence was recognized, and, -in sixteen hundred and ninety-nine-of to avoid the gaze which he could not endure, Ned Ward's London Spy. Ned himself he left before the meeting was over. afterwards kept a public-house, and may When Peter, was in England the see of have had a finger in the concoction of the Canterbury was filled by Tenison - the same Nectar Ambrosia, that so took the Czar. Tenison who, as vicar of St. Martin's, had This celebrated compound was sold in bot- preached a sermon of forgiveness at the funetles, price two shillings and one shilling ral of Eleanor Gwyn. Peter paid a visit to each, and in glasses of twopence and one the prelate at Lambeth, and, having expresspenny each. The newspapers inform us, ed a wish to be informed as to our religion that the Czar afterwards sent for a quantity -highly approving of it.
ion, the same divine who administered consolation to the death-bed of Rochester, and contributed religious comfort to Russell in the cell and on the scaffold.
and constitution, the Archbishop, with the approbation of the king, selected the Bishop There was a great meeting while Peter of Salisbury. No better man could have was in England, and at which he was ex- been chosen. The Bishop of Salisbury of pected to have been present. This was the that time was Gilbert Burnet, who had Newmarket meeting, then the centre of at-written the History of our Reformed Religtraction for horse-racing, cock-fighting, and other kindred pursuits. Led horses for the Czar-the papers report - had been sent to the palace. The king was there, attended by five dukes, eleven earls; by barons, baronets, knights, and squires. There was much that was attractive. The famous Yorkshire horse, backed by Mr. Boucher, was to run against Mr. Framptom's Turk. The distance was four miles-the weight that each was to carry was ten stone, and the stake five hundred pounds. Among the earls was a great captain, the future Duke of Marlborough. Lord Godolphin also was present whose name, through his famed "Arabian," is known to thousands who never heard of the Godolphin ministry, nor Sid Hamet's rod, made immortal by Dean Swift.
There was one person whom the Czar (while in England) expressed a wish to meet, and that was Edmund Halley, the great mathematician and astronomer, whose practical acquaintance with the variation of the compass and the courses of the tides he rightly thought were matters of great importance. Halley spoke German fluently, and Peter was pleased with the conversation of the illustrious Englishman.
Religious enthusiasts sought eagerly to
Burnet had good interpreters, and had much free discourse with him. He found that he was subject to convulsive motions over his body, and that his head seemed to be affected by them; that he was not wanting in capacity, and had a larger measure of knowledge than his education had led him to expect. He found him a man of a very hot temper, soon influenced, and very brutal in his passion, raising his natural heat by frequent recourse to brandy, which he rectified himself. His turn was for mechanics; and nature-so thought the bishopseemed to have designed him rather to be a ship-carpenter than a great prince. He wrought much with his own hands, and made all about him work at the models of ships. He was resolved to encourage learning, and to polish his people by sending some of them to travel in other countries, and to draw strangers to come and live with them. He was desirous to understand the doctrine of the Church of England, but did not seem disposed to mend matters in Muscovy. The bishop adds—and this, perhaps, is the most
important portion of what he has related | steamers and boats of every description, about Peter "He told me he designed a which now crowd her waters from London great fleet at Azoff, and with it-to attack the Bridge to Blackwall. He may have concludTurkish empire." ed his nights at the Czar's Head.
Here we have, explained, the policy which King William was not inattentive to the Russia has been pursuing secretly, but some- Czar. He made him a second visit, at which times openly (now openly enough), since an odd incident occurred. The Czar had a Peter learned to build ships at Deptford. favorite monkey, which usually sat upon Little, perhaps, did the Czar imagine that the back of the Czar's chair. As soon as this policy was, in the year eighteen hundred the king was seated, the monkey jumped and fifty-four, to cost the country in which he was learning the arts of aggression, a fleet in the Baltic, a fleet in the Black Sea, and an expedition into the Sea of Azoff. Nay, that to repel his attack on the Turkish empire, France and England should join their forces for the first time; and that the existence of Turkey as an empire would be fought for, as it now is (a world-wide fact), before the greatest stronghold of Russia or of any nation, ancient or modern.
The Czar liked brandy and Ambrosia, and he liked a strong mixture called " pepper and brandy." The Marquis of Caermarthen often joined him in his orgies. But what told on the Czar Peter-perhaps from its frequency-is not known to have been injurious to the English marquis. Peter was at this time subject to convulsive motions of the body, that seemed, as I have already related, to affect his head. But the English were deep drinkers, especially our sailors, and the marquis was an English admiral-so, indeed, was Benbow, another of Peter's companions during his three months' visit to England. Peter should have known (we fear he did not) the most distinguished admiral then alive Admiral Russell, who defeated the French off La Hogue, for which he was created Earl of Oxford, and who is said to have mixed the largest bowls of punch ever made. One was dug in his garden at Chippenham in Cambridgeshire, the other he made at Lisbon.
somewhat angrily upon him. The "great Nassau" was disconcerted, the whole ceremonial discomposed, and most of the time (Lord Dartmouth, who tells the story, assures us) was spent in apologies for the monkey's behavior.
The Czar is said to have enjoyed his visit to England, but it was high time for him to return. He had been apprehensive of his sister's intrigues, and a confirmation of his suspicions hurried him away. On Monday, the eighteenth of April, sixteen hundred and ninety-eight, he went to Kensington, to take leave of the king. "He thanked his majesty for the kind entertainment and honor he had received in his majesty's dominions, and for the fine ship he had presented him with." On the same occasion, Peter made a present to his majesty of "a fine ruby of very great value." On Wednesday, the twentieth of April, he dined at Wimbleton with the Duke of Leeds, the Earl of Danby, so celebrated in the reign of Charles the Second, and the father of his friend the Marquis of Caermarthen. On his return to Deptford the same night, he found" very fine music to divert and serenade him." This was the last night he spent on shore. On Thursday, the twenty-first of April, he set sail from Deptford, for Holland, under convoy of two men-of-war-the York and the Greenwich-and three yachts, commanded by Admiral Mitchell. He was detained for some days by contrary winds, but at last left England, which he was never to see again. He landed at the Hague, sending the Royal Transport yacht to Archangel, from whence (so it was said) he was to carry it by land to the river Tanais. Lord Caermarthen accompanied him as far as Chatham, to whom, however, he did not say farewell, without conferring a favor-and one of moment. This was the right of importing tobacco into Russia. In the first year he was to consign three thousand hogsheads, in the second five thousand, and afterwards six thousand hogsheads yearly. What the marquis made by his monopoly no one has told us.
There is still to be seen in Little Tower Street, in the City of London, a public-house (recently refronted) bearing the sign of the Czar's Head. This was the favorite resort of Peter when in London. Hither he would come from Deptford after his labors in the dockyard, and his watching the changes which the artificers of the yard were making in a yacht called the Royal Transport, which King William had presented to him, with permission to make such alterations in her as he considered necessary. He came from Deptford to London in a small decked boat, which he assisted in working to Tower His physician he left behind him for two Stairs. After the orgies he delighted in, he months, that he might see Oxford, Camwas not, I fear, very well fitted to pilot the bridge, and Bath, and took with him two boat on their return down the river to Dept- boys from the mathematical school founded ford; but the Thames was not yet then at Christ's Hospital by King Charles the lashed and troubled by large and small Second, and what the newspapers of the time
describe as "the famous geographical clock | sation: his estimate for damages including made by Mr. John Carte, watchmaker, at the sum of one pound for three wheelbarrows the sign of the Dial and Crown, near Essex broke and lost. Street in the Strand; which clock tells what o'clock it is in any part of the world, whether it is day or night, the sun's rising or setting throughout the year, its entrance into the signs of the zodiac; the arch which they and the sun in them makes above or below the horizon, with several other curious motions." This Peter bought, but the price is not named.
When Admiral Benbow returned to his house at Saye's Court, great was his consternation at finding the unnecessary damage that had been done to it by Peter and his retinue; still greater was the consternation which the author of Sylva expressed when he saw the state to which his far-famed garden had been reduced. Benbow complained to Evelyn, and both Benbow and Evelyn memorialized the lords of the Treasury for compen sation for the injuries done. Their joint memorials were referred to the surveyor-general of works, Sir Christopher Wren, and to his majesty's principal gardener, Mr. London, the earliest English gardener of any reputation whose name has reached us. Both reported strongly in favor of the claims for compensation. Evelyn received, "in compensation for the damage done to his house, goods, and gardens, at Deptford, by his Czarises majesty and his retinue while they resided there," the sum of one hundred and sixty-two pounds seven shillings; and Admiral Benbow received, "for like damage done to his goods,' "the sum of one hundred and thirty-three pounds two shillings and sixpence. The payments were made by the paymaster of his majesty's works, and are included in his accounts. The in-door habits of Peter and his retinue were, it appears from the estimates of damages, filthy in the
Evelyn was prepared for some damage to his house. "There is a house full of people," his servant writes to him, "and right nasty. The Czar lies next your library, and dines in the parlor next your study. He dines at ten o'clock and six at night; is very seldom at home a whole day; very often in the king's yard, or by water, dressed in several dresses. The king is expected here this day; the best parlor is pretty clean for him to be entertained in. The king pays for all he has."
London, the gardener, divided his report (it is dated May ninth, sixteen hundred and ninety-eight) under "what can be repaired and what cannot." The marrow of his report (it is now published for the first time) is as follows:
into holes by their leaping and showing tricks 1. All the grass-work is out of order and broke
2. The bowling-green is in the same condition. 3. All that ground which used to be cultivated for eatable plants is all overgrown with weeds, and is not manured nor cultivated, by reason the Czar would not suffer any men to work when the season offered.
4. The wall-fruit and standard fruit-trees are unpruned.
5. The hedges and wilderness are not cut as they ought to be.
6. The gravel walks are all broke into holes and out of order.
London, his majesty's gardener, and he certifies The several observations were made by George that to put the garden and plantations in as good repair as they were in before his Czarish Majesty resided there, will require the sum of fifty-five pounds.
Great damages are done to the trees and plants,
which cannot be repaired, as the breaking the
In the garden at Saye's Court was what Evelyn himself calls an impregnable holly hedge, four hundred feet in length, nine feet Any inroad of the Czar Nicholas and all high, and five feet thick. This fine holly the Russias upon Europe would leave Europe hedge was a source of delight to Peter and much as the Czar Peter and his retinue left his retinue. They made it a point of attack, the house and garden at Deptford of the and were accustomed to amuse themselves by learned and refined John Evelyn. I can hear endeavoring to drive a wheelbarrow through the laugh of Peter, as with brute force, it. Peter himself was sometimes in the bar-stimulated by drink, he drove the wheelbarrow. Such is the received story, which I can row, with Prince Menzikoff upon it, into the now confirm by Benbow's claim for compen- prickly holly hedge, five feet in thickness.
"VERBATIM ET LITERATIM.". - As this phrase | rate, which means after the manner of a literate often finds insertion, even in the pages of "N. & Q.," it may be well to call attention to the fact that there is no such adverb as literatim in the Latin language. There is the adverb lite
man, learnedly; but to express the idea intended by the coined word literatim, I think we must use the form ad literam-" Verbatim et ad literam." — Notes & Queries.