1686] DIARY OF PATRICK GORDON. 121   wee hyred fresh horses, haveins

1686] DIARY OF PATRICK GORDON. 121 wee hyred fresh horses, haveins



Passages from the diary of General Patrick Gordon of Auchleuchries : A.D. 1635-A.D. 1699"


wee hyred fresh horses, haveins: payed for those from Berlin eight dollers.
Payed here for dinner, nine good grosse. From a Uttle hill, hard by, can
be seen thirty six churches. Wee traviled througli the village Wildberg,
on a small brook, which hath been fortifyed ; and through Canser, another
village, where a fort hath been without bulwarks, to Wusterhausen, in all
two mylles. This is a decayed towne, and situated in an illand, haveing
the remnants of a brick wall. To Kirits, one mylle. Here wee payed for
bear, and butter, and bread, six good grosse. Here wee tooke fresh horses,
haveing payed for the other, two dollers and a half.

Wee rod all the night, and came to Perlberg, a good considerable towne, March 20.
four mylles ; where, getting fresh horses, wee rod three mylles, and crossed
the river Mean, which is the borders of the Elector of Brandiburg his do-
minions ; and, half a mylle further, dyned in a village called Korlous, where
payed fourteen grosse. And, on the left hand, wee crossed the river Elbe by
bridges. Wee came to a gentlemans house and village, by the river Elbe
called Benug, and to Tripko, a village, being three mylles; where getting
fresh horses, we came to Neuhausen by the river Elbe, a village, two mylles ;
where, taking fresh horses again, wee passed in the night tyme througli a
litle towne called Bitsiburg, belonging to the Duks of Saxen Lauenburg,
being two mylles ; and, by day light, came to Lauenberg, a mylle. This March 21.
towne giveth title to a brench of the Saxoniau family, who have a palace
here. Then, a mylle further, wee changed horses in a village. Wee
went three mylles further to a towne called BaredorfFe, a little towne
belonging to the cityes of Hamburgh and Lubeck, but now the Duk
of Luneburgs people had by force taken possession of it, and lived upon free
quarter. Here I was stopped untill t had shouen my passe. Then passing
thorou, we came to Hamburg, two mylles. In this passage we see many
pleasent houzes and gardens belonging to the towne of Hamburg, as also
the small fort, where the Duck of Luneburgs people and the Hamburges
had lattly a bloody rencounter. This Hamburgh is most pleasantly situated
on the river Elbe, most convenient for traffick, as being in the very center
of the north parts of Europe, and wanteth no convenience but good neigh-

This day, a man and a woman, a burger of the towne, being the womans March 22.
master, for murthering, were carted from the prisone to the house where the
murder was comitted ; and there before this house, with hotte pinsers, the

Gordon was brought up and remained a lifelong Roman Catholic, at a time when the Church was being persecuted in Scotland. At age of fifteen, he entered the Jesuit college at Braunsberg, East Prussia, then part of Poland. In 1661, after many years experiences as a soldier of fortune, he joined the Russian army under Tsar Aleksei I, and in 1665 was sent on a special mission to England. After his return, he distinguished himself in several wars against the Turks and Tatars in southern Russia. In recognition of his service he was promoted to major-general in 1678, was appointed to the high command at Kiev in 1679, and in 1683 was made lieutenant-general. In 1687 and 1689 he took part in expeditions against the Tatars in the Crimea, being made a full general. Later in 1689, a revolution broke out in Moscow, and with the troops under his command, Gordon virtually decided events in favor of Peter the Great against the Regent, Tsarevna Sophia Alekseyevna. Consequently, he was for the remainder of his life in high favor with the Tsar, who confided to him the command of his capital during his absence from Russia. In 1696, Gordon's design of a "moveable rampart" played a key role in helping the Russians take Azov. One of Gordon's convinced the Tsars to establish the first Roman Catholic church and school in Muscovy, of which he remained the main benefactor and headed the Catholic community in Russia until his death. For his services his second son James, brigadier of the Russian army, was created Count of the Holy Roman Empire in 1701. At the end of his life the Tsar, who had visited Gordon frequently during his illness, was with him when he died, and with his own hands closed his eyes. General Gordon left behind him a uniquely detailed diary of his life and times, written in English. This is preserved in manuscript in the Russian State Military Archive in Moscow. Passages from the Diary of General Patrick Gordon of Auchleuchries (1635–1699) was printed, under the editorship of Joseph Robertson, for the Spalding Club, at Aberdeen, Scotland, 1859.



1635 - 1699


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