Rus Articles Journal

Why Afanasy Nikitin went for three seas?

Famous Vasco da Gama for whom history was intended to open a sea way to India just learned to go, holding a nyankina a hand when the Russian merchant Afanasy Nikitin stepped into the embankment of the Indian city of Chaul. Ahead the merchant had several years of surprising travel and adventures of which he told in the manuscript Circulation for three seas become the first detailed description of foreign voyage of the Russian which reached us.

Main trade artery Russia in the 15th century there was Volga, on it and the Tver merchant Afanasy Nikitin " went to a way in 1466; with companions . Having stocked up with the roadside diploma from the prince Mikhail of Tver, on two vessels they carried the Russian goods in hope to favourably sell them on coast of the Caspian Sea (Hvalynsky`s sea). In Nizhny Novgorod the merchant caravan joined the Shirvan embassy which was coming back from Moscow which, according to Nikitin, was lucky from the grand duke Ivan III as a gift to the khan of 90 gyrfalcons. The way was dangerous, on Volga plaid pranks the Tatar hordes, and merchants hoped for ambassadorial protection.

The merchant caravan safely reached the delta of Volga, but merchants could not agree with the Astrakhan khan Qassim, also the Shirvan embassy did not help. Merchant vessels were plundered, part of merchants were taken prisoner, and the others could reach on the ambassadorial vessel Derbent. Here Nikitin was late for a year, long efforts on liberating of prisoners and return at least to part of goods began. Protection Shirvan - the shah of merchants managed to be freed from bondage, but the goods to them were not returned.

Nikitin could not return home as the most part of goods was borrowed under future trade profit. For it the long way on overseas lands in hope to earn means for return of debts began. He moved to Baku, and then through mountains went to the South, being engaged in trade and studying of languages. To spring of 1469 Afanasy reached Ormuz - large port on the bank of the Persian Gulf which was on crossing of trade ways from India, Asia Minor, Egypt and China.

Solar heat in Ormuz Is big, will burn the person. In Ormuz there were I month, and from Ormuz after Easter in day of Radunitsa I went in a tava with horses for the sea Indian - Nikitin in the traveling diary wrote down. The merchant, if wants to earn, cannot but risk, and Afanasy bought the Arab stallion in hope to favourably sell it in India. The way took with the sea to the Indian city of Chaul six weeks.

India made indelible impression on Nikitin: And here the Indian country, and people go nude, and the head is not covered, and breasts goals, and hair to one spit are braided, all go bryukhata, and children will be born every year, and at them there is a lot of children. Both men, and woman all nude yes all black. Where I go, for me people much - marvel to the white person. The local prince has a veil on the head, and another on hips, and at boyars local - a veil through a shoulder, and another on hips, and princesses go - the veil through a shoulder is thrown, other veil on hips .

At once it was not succeeded to sell a horse. The price did not arrange, and Nikitin went to depth of India, entering what was seen in the traveling diary. Afanasy does not miss usual household details, describing as cook food, than feed horses and a livestock in what put on as well as what trade in. And what Russian will not take an interest in local drink and hospitality? Wine at them is done of big nuts, to a goat gundustansky are called, and home brew - from a tatna. Cook to the hostess`s guests, and the bed is laid by hostesses, and sleep with guests . Afanasy Nikitin`s records became the first detailed description of life of India not only for Russia, but also for Europe.

In the mountain fortress of Dzhunnare he had to be late against the will. And in that Dzhunnare the khan took away from me a stallion when learned that I am not Besermyan, and the Russinian. And he told: Both I will return a stallion, and gold in addition I will give one thousand, only pass into our belief - in Mukhammeddini. But you will not pass into our belief, into Mukhammeddini, both I will take a stallion, and gold from your head I will take one thousand . Nikitin was rescued by familiar horasanets Muhammad who interceded for it before the khan. The horse to Afanasy was returned, and beliefs did not begin to force to change. But Dzhunnar it hurried to leave.

A horse it was succeeded with benefit to sell only at the end of 1471 in Bidare. Living in Bidar, Nikitin with many Hindus got acquainted. Opened for them the belief, told that not the Besermyan I, and the Christian, and my name Afanasy. And Hindus did not begin to hide from me anything, neither about the food, nor about trade, nor about prayers, nor about other things, and did not begin to hide the wives in the house. I asked them on belief, and they spoke to me: we believe in Adam, and quarrystones, speak, and there is Adam and all sort him. And all beliefs in India eighty and four beliefs, and all believe in quarrystone. And people with each other do not drink different beliefs, do not eat, do not marry . Nikitin brings up questions of belief in notes repeatedly, showing at the same time sensitivity a little peculiar to that time.

Traveling notes demonstrate that Nikitin and terrestrial pleasures did not avoid: In India there is a lot of idle women and therefore they are cheap: if you have with it close connection, give two inhabitants; you want to start up the money for wind - give six inhabitants. So in these places it is got. And slaves - concubines are cheap: 4 funa - it is good, 6 Fong - it is good and black, black - precherny amchyuk small, is good .

One and a half more years Nikitin traveled around India, tried to buy goods for export to Russia, but unsuccessfully. Dogs of a besermena Lay to me, said that there is a lot of our goods, and for our earth there is nothing: in total goods white for the Besermyan earth, pepper yes paint, it is cheap. Those duties do not pay those who carry oxen for the sea. And to us will not allow to take goods duty-free. And there is a lot of duties, and at the sea of robbers there is a lot of .

Spring of 1473 Afanasy Nikitin from Dabul went to a way back. On the way to Ormuz he visited Africa. In that earth we were Ethiopian five days. By God`s favor of the evil it did not happen. Distributed to rice and pepper and bread to Ethiopians much. And they did not plunder the vessel .

From Ormuza Afanasy went to the North. Through Shiraz, Isfahan, Kashan, Tabriz, Erzincan reached Trabzon. It seemed, long travel comes to a happy end. But in that Trabzon subash and the pasha did a lot of harm to me. All ordered to bring my good to themselves in fortress, on the mountain and searched everything. And that there were trifles good - all vygrabit . There was with Nikitin only a diary yes desire to return home somewhat quicker. Money for the road it was necessary to borrow, hoping to meet the Russian merchants in Cafe (Feodosiya) and with their help to pay off.

In Cafu Afanasy reached only late fall 1474. On it its records break. Afanasy Nikitin did not happen to see native Tver any more. According to the merchants who brought its records to Moscow he died near Smolensk. Traveling records of Nikitin got to the clerk of the grand duke Vasily Mamyrev. Hozheniye for three seas it was included in the chronicle. Probably, notes of the merchant were appreciated as up to now six lists reached.

Descendants held in remembrance the courageous Russian merchant who discovered India for Russians. The top of an underwater massif in the Indian Ocean near the equator is called by his name. In Tver on the bank of Volga where its unusual travel began, on the embankment called by his name the monument is established.]