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Abercromby, John / A trip through the eastern Caucasus
(1889)

A trip through the eastern Caucasus: chapter I: from Tiflis to Nukha,   pp. [1]-29


Page 19

FROM TIFLIS TO NUKHA. 
talking and haggling, which, if it ended for one day, 
began again on the next, I found myself the possessor 
of four animals; all for the ridiculous sum of £24. 
The best of them was a good-looking, well-bred gray 
gelding, full of spirit, with only the defect of age. 
He carried me splendidly the whole tour without 
getting a sore back. The next was a small brown 
stallion, intended for the incubus. The other two 
horses were veritable Rozinantes to look at, but for 
all that were strong, sure-footed, and did very good 
work for some time, though at last I had to exchange 
them. The shoes were like Syrian and Moorish horse- 
shoes-a roundish plate of iron with a small hole in 
the middle, fixed to the hoof by four or five nails. 
The incubus, who had an infallible dodge for every- 
thing, possessed the secret of taming horses. Though 
the little stallion was as tame as a lamb, he proceeded 
without my knowledge to apply his nostrum. The 
result was he got a severe kick on the shin, the 
nursing of which occupied his attention for several 
days. 
One evening I gave a supper to a few of my new 
acquaintances.  Among them     was the Rev. Father 
Vitali Janashvilo, a Georgian priest, educated at 
Moscow, and the antiquarian of the place. He was 
a stout, jovial old man, always making jokes, at 
which he would laugh in a series of loud guffaws 
that was quite irresistible. During a more serious 
interval he gave me a short lesson in Georgian pro- 
nunciation, and told a legend to explain the origin 
of the word Nukha, though unfortunately I could not 
C2 


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