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Meakin, Annette M. B. / In Russian Turkestan; a garden of Asia and its people
(1903)

Chapter XII: Sart women,   pp. 106-136


Page 106

CHAPTER XII
SART WOMEN
"I have been frequently asked since my return-it is a question
which an Englishman always seems to ask first-what the women
of Bokhara were like. I am utterly unable to say. I never saw
the features of one between the ages of ten and fifty."-CURzoN.
" Do you consider the Sarts to be a people with a
future ?" was a question I put to one of the most
thoughtful of my Russian acquaintances.
"They can have no future as long as their women
are veiled," was the reply. " Russia should have
commanded them to unveil their women from the
first; now it would be a more difficult matter."
"You seem     to forget," he continued, "that
Russia's own women were veiled till Peter the
Great put a stop to it ; they had their separate re-
ception-rooms, just as the Sarts have to-day."
"It will take more than one Peter the Great to
set the world to rights," I mused, as a shapeless
mass in jack-boots hurried past me. Could that
unsightly object really be a woman ?  Yes, it was,
but whether a beautiful girl in her teens or a
shrivelled-up crone, it was impossible to say.
One day I was conversing with      a venerable
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