Dialogue on the Threshold

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Tuesday, 19 June 2012

The Vogouls (3) Theology, eschatology

On the 14th of May [1692], he embarked at Solikamskoi, and crossing the little River of Usolkat, half a League from this City, he entered the Kama again, and crossed that River from Europe to Asia, arriving in the Country of the first Tartars of Siberia, called Wogulski, which is indifferently well people, and a most pleasant Country all along the Banks of the Susawaia, having on it all Sorts of Flowers and odoriferous Herbs; with prodigious Numbers of Deer, and all Sorts of Game. As the Tartars of Wogul upon this River are Heathens, he had the Curiosity to go on Shore to talk with them, concerning their Belief and Manner of Life. (...) M. Isbrant, the Muscovite Minister, asked them if they had any Knowledge of a God, and if they did not believe there was a supreme Being in Heaven, who created all Things, and governs the World by his good Providence, and who gives Rain and fair Weather? They answered, it was not unlikely, seeing the Sun and Moon, which they worshipped, and the other Stars, were placed in the Firmament, and that there was doubtless a Power that ruled them: But they would by no means agree, that there was a Devil, because he had never made himself known to them: Yet they do not deny the Resurrection of the Dead, but know nothing of what is to become of them.

John Mottley, The Life of Peter the Great, Emperor of all Russia. The second edition, with curious Copper Plates, and Maps. London. Printed for M. Cooper, in Pater-noster Row. 1755.

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