Our Notes & References
Uncommon first edition of this study of Anglo-Russian relations in pre-Petrine Russia, when perhaps most famously Giles Fletcher published his polemic description of the country and its people (in 1591). The subject matter hadn’t been much covered in Russian publications; but this one takes its place among the works of Joseph Christian Hamel (Iosif Gamel’ in Russian; 1788–1862), who published a number of works of Anglo-Russian interest. The present account, posthumously published as a supplement to the transactions of the Imperial Academy of Sciences, appears to be his most extensive and charts the early history of the two countries’ connections.
With, at end of volume 2, a 23-pp. catalogue of books published and sold by the Imperial Academy of Sciences, including a 10-vol. Buffon, and Fischer’s description of Siberia, published almost a century earlier.
Hamel came from the Volga German community of Sarepta. A doctor by training, he soon went into government service, and by 1829 had joined the Imperial Academy of Sciences, on behalf of whom he travelled extensively to both Britain and America. It was on one just such visit, to the Great Exhibition in London, that he died, and is buried in West Norwood cemetery.