ART. II. Bemerkungen auf einer Reise, &c.
(Värjäystä koskeva osa)

The German Museum,
or Monthly Repository of the Literature of Germany,
the North and the Continent in general.
Vol.1 for the year 1800.
Printed for C. Geisweiter & the proprietors.
No.42 Parliament Street.

Remarks made on a Journey through the Southern Provinces of the Russian Empire in the Years 1793 and 1794. By P. S. Pallas, &c.

(Continued from our preceding Number, p. 52.)

From Mosco, where we left our learned traveller, he departed on the 19th of February. On his journey to Saratoff, by way of Pensa, Professor Pallas, in passing the river Kliasma, had the misfortune to fall as deep as his loins into a fissure which was covered with drifted snow. As he met with no houses on the opposite bank, and found it still more dangerous to repass the river, he was under the painful necessity of proceeding, in wet clothes, on the long stage of thirty seven versts, or about twenty-five English miles, to the county-town of Sudogda. - We should not have recorded this accident, had not the author informed us, that the bad consequences of it, with respect to his health, though they did not appear till the subsequent spring, have laid the foundation of a diseased and valetudinary life. - We have since been in formed, from respectable authority, that M. Pallas has with drawn himself from the active scenes of life, or at least from the artificial circles of a court which, if one half of the ludicrous anecdotes circulated in this country be true, expects from literary men an equal degree of sycophantic gratitude, as from its feudal hereditary lords. Be this as it may, fortunately for our author, the late Empress Catharine II. who knew how to appreciate and reward literary merit, had grant ed him an estate situated near Kherson, in the peninsula of the Crimea, the income of which is from two to three thousand rubles per annum, and where he proposes to spend the remainder of his days.

After having given a detailed and animated description of the moral and physical condition of the different colonies lately established on the banks of the Volga, and particularly of his countrymen at Sarepta, who have uniformly embraced the principles of the Moravians, or United Brethren, the author proceeds on his Vernal Journey to Astrakhan. As our limits do not admit of extracting many valuable remarks on the state of agriculture, population, commerce, and the various manufactories of the different provinces visited by our traveller, we shall at present communicate only a particular ma nufacturing process, of considerable importance to this country, but which has long remained a secret.

"I did not think," says M. Pallas, "my time would be ill spent during my stay at Astrakhan, to enquire again into the means employed in the East, for dying madder red; especially as I had an opportunity of obtaining accurate information on this subject, by a friend, who had advanced money for the establishment of a work for dying cotton of that colour. I shall communicate my remarks, which may serve to correct my former description, printed in the Journal of St. Petersburg, and the periodical work called, in German, Nordische Beyträge, or Northern Contributions. This account is the first that has appeared in print relative to an art that has formerly been kept a great secret.

"A quantity of cotton yarn is usually prepared for dying, on a Saturday, in the following manner: It is first soaked in the fat of fish, previously saturated with a solution of the salt of soda, called Kalakar; in this state it is left in a heap till the succeeding Monday, during which time it grows remarkably hot.

"On the Monday, the yarn is rinsed, dried, and again immersed in this fat emulsion; and on Tuesday that process is repeated a third time, after which it is hung up to dry. The four following days of the week it is repeatedly steeped in new lixivia of simple Kalakar.

* A Russian ood is equal to forty pounds' weight."Having undergone these processes, the yarn receives the first olive colour from the leaves of the Belge, or the Cotinus of Linnæus. In order to die ten pood* of yarn, three pood and thirty pounds of the leaves of the Belge, that is, fifteen pounds of leaves to each pood of yarn, are boiled in large kettles containing from forty to forty-three Russian vedros, or eimers of water, each containing about thirteen quarts English measure. This decoction is filtered through sieves, while the kettles are cleansed for the reception of the purified liquor, in which a pood of alum is dissolved. Into this liquid dye the yarn is dipt by skains, in small cups or pots, then hung up to dry, afterwards washed, and again dried.

"The yarn being thus prepared, the workmen proceed to give it a red dye. To every pood of yarn an equal quantity, or somewhat less, of ground madder, which has previously been mingled with half a Russian vedro, or about thirteen pints English measure of blood, is put into every kettle. After boiling this dye, the yarn is immersed in the preparation, and suffered to boil up with the liquor.

"When thus perfectly dyed, it is dried, and afterwards placed in pots containing alkaline water, in which it is completely immersed, and allowed to simmer, while the liquor which boils over and runs offby a small gutter, affixed to the edge of the vessel, is continually replaced by a fresh solution of the soda.

"After this boiling, and a subsequent drying and washing, the process is finished, which usually requires a term of three weeks in its operation. It is affirmed that the Turks conclude their process by again soaking the dyed yarn in oil to give it a more beautiful colour and lustre, and to increase its weight: in this state it is pressed and allowed to dry. They commonly use the oil of olives, instead of the fat of fish; but, in general, every kind of oil or liquid fat, which forms a saponaceous mass with the solution of soda, is proper for this process of dying.

"The price of dying materials always varies according to the state of the market, and other circumstances; and it requires a large capital to support such an establishment. Of the madder obtained from Persia and the environs of the Terek, that with small roots is preferred; it is sold according to its quality, from eleven to fourteen rubles the pood, and afterwards reduced to powder. The bruised leaves and stalks of the Belge, or Cotinus, are brought from Kislar, and costs them from eighty to one hundred kopeeks, or one ruble, a pood. Unless the cotton yarn be previously dyed with these leaves, or the galls which were formerly used, it will take only a pale, and not a durable red. Soda of a good quality also comes from Kislar, and varies in price from thirty to one hundred kopeeks a pood. The best sort, which is dry and hard as a stone, was at this time sold at only thirty kopeeks. On being dissolved, all the particles of carbon with which it is mixed, are precipitated, and the solution becomes perfectly clarified by skimming ; the sediment is thrown away as useless. A pood of soda is dissolved in a vat of forty vedros, or about one hundred and thirty English gallons.

"For every pood of cotton yarn, the dyer is paid from twenty-five to twenty-six rubles, materials and the price of dying included, and he returns from three to six pounds overplus to the pood; because the yarn has acquired so much additional weight from the colour.

"To each pood of yarn are used four pounds of alum, fifteen pounds of Cotinus leaves, fifty eight pounds of the fat of fish, one pood of soda, and one pood of madder. Two boilers for the decoction of the Belge leaves and madder, both heated by the same fire, and four large pans for the soda, are sufficient to dye five hundred pood of yarn in one year. It must however be remarked, that the dying process cannot be continued in winter, and it is likewise interrupted by rainy weather."


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