CONSETT, Thomas.

The Present State and Regulations of the Church of Russia.

Establish'd by the late Tsar's royal edict. Also in a second volume a collection of several tracts relating to his fleets, expedition to Derbent, &c. Translated from the originals in the Slavonian and Russian languages. With an accurate Map of the Caspian Sea. And a Preface to the Whole, wherein is contained a full and genuine Account of the Rise and Fall of Prince Menshikoff. By Tho. Consett, M. A. Late Chaplain to the British Factory in Russia, and Fellow of the Royal Society of Sciences in Berlin.

London: printed by S. Holt, and sold by J. Brotherton Tho. Meighan, A. Miller, and Fr. Hildyard, Bookseller in York, 1729 Stock Code: 144543
£1,500.00
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Cementing the reputation of Peter the Great

First edition, a collection of Russian documents in English translation, all serving the compiler's attempt to cement the reputation of Peter the Great (who had died four years earlier) as a great leader and reformer.

Thomas Consett was the first Anglican priest of the "British Factory", the association of British merchants who were resident in Russia. He spoke Russian, established a reputation as a scholar, built a vast Russian library, and moved in circles close to Peter, whom he was a great admirer of. Through these circles he accessed information not just ecclesiastic and scholarly, but also relating to political matters, making him a valued correspondent of the British government.

The book was published with a clear purpose, using the printing of original documents to establish the place of Peter the Great as a revolutionary leader in Russia's history. "I have thought it for the purpose to lay a sure foundation of future history, by drawing out of the language of the country some authentick records which will, and must be allow'd to be proper materials for historians to work with hereafter, and which yet might have been lost or neglected" (p. ii).

His collection includes Peter's Spiritual Regulation of 1721, which abolished the patriarchate and replaced it with the Holy Synod, and additional ecclesiastical regulations. Also included is a contemporary biography of Peter, documents relating to his death and funeral, and an account of his development of the Russian navy.

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Description

2 parts in 1 volume as issued, octavo (194 x 116 mm). Contemporary calf, rebacked, red morocco label.

Condition

Complete with errata, divisional title and contents leaf. Occasional light foxing and browning but generally clean. A very good copy.

Bibliography

ESTC T130057. See Anthony Cross, Cambridge - Some Russian Collections: An Inaugural Lecture Delivered Before the University of Cambridge on 26 February 1987, CUP, 1987.

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