[Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Musziks

MIKE MCHENRY maurmike1 at verizon.net
Tue Oct 21 11:17:38 PDT 2008

Here is an excerpt from "THE ECONOMIST"  1843.

We have seen the Emperor; here is his subject. The mushik is an individual
belonging to the "black people," the Russian term for the lower orders:-

"At the first glance there is something exceedingly repulsive in the Russian
mushik. His hair is long and shaggy, and so is his beard; his person is
dirty, he is always noisy; and when wrapped up in his sheepskin he certainly
presents a figure more suitable for a bandit or a murderer than for a man
devoted to peaceable occupations. This apparent rudeness, however, is less a
part of the man himself than of his hair and beard, of his shaggy sheepskin,
and the loud deep tone of his voice. The stranger who is able to address him
with kindness in his native language, soon discovers in the mushik a
good-humoured, friendly, harmless, and serviceable creature. 'Good day,
brother, how goes it?' 'Good day, father, thank God it goes well with me.
What is your pleasure? How can I serve you?' And at these words his face
unbends into a simpering smile, the hat is taken off, the glove drawn from
the hand, bow follows bow, and he will catch your hand with native
politeness and good-humoured cordiality."-P. 63.

Though good-humoured and polite, however, sad to say, the mushik, according
to our author, is apt to be both a cheat and a sot. He is a clever fellow,
too, as the following anecdote will prove:-


-----Original Message-----
From: ger-poland-volhynia-bounces at eclipse.sggee.org
[mailto:ger-poland-volhynia-bounces at eclipse.sggee.org] On Behalf Of Don
Sent: Tuesday, October 21, 2008 1:29 PM
To: Volhnia Mailing List
Subject: [Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Musziks

My mother and father who immigrated to Canada from the Zhitomir region on
January 5, 1927 (before the "Communist louts" settled in) often talked about
the Musziks.  They referred to them as "socially backward' Russian
Ukrainians, who were not very motivated to work.  "All they did," my father
used to say "is drink and dance."  

don miller

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