Dino F. Avdibegović

Molesworth - An account of Denmark

Categories: [bosanski], [literature]

Jedna prijateljica mi je neki dan poslala odličan članak o jednom britanskom diplomati koji je bio ambasador svoje zemlje u Kraljevini Danskoj u periodu 1689-1692. Odmah nakon napuštanja te pozicije, Molesworth je napisao knjigu “An Account of Denmark As It was in the Year 1692” u kojoj se ne ustručava da napadne dansku apsolutnu monarhiju, državno uređenje, način življenja, pa i samo društvo. Upravo sam pročitao pomenutu knjigu, radi se o danskoj verziji iz 1977. godine, ali ću prilikom citiranja koristiti originalni engleski tekst.

Treba imati na umu da je Robert Molesworth bio pristalica Whig partije koja se borila za parlamentarnu monarhiju, aboliciju ropstva i pravo glasanja, i u tom svjetlu treba barem donekle posmatrati njegovu odbojnost prema tadašnjem danskom političkom i društvenom uređenju.

Molesworth je u drugom poglavlju svoje knjige zabilježio da se dansko stanovništvo hrani poprilično lošom i nekvalitetnom hranom. Građanstvo se hrani ražanim hljebom, sušenom ribom i lošim sirom, dok seljaci uglavnom jedu ražani hljeb, bijelo meso i repu.

The feeding of the Commonalty generally throughout all Denmark is very mean; the Burgers and Citizens sustaining themselves with Rye-bread, Salt-flesh, Stock-fish, Bacon, and very bad Cheese; insomuch that the Inspectors of our Markets in England, who use to destroy or send to the Prisons all such Victuals as are not judged wholsom, would (if they found them no better provided than at Copenhagen) go near to empty the Markets, and leave little to either Buyer or Seller. The Peasants Jive on Roots, white Meats, and Rye-bread; seldom tailing fresh Fish, and scarce ever Flesh, unless on Come extraordinary Festivals, as on St. Martin’s Eve, when each Family in Denmark, without fail, makes merry with a rosled Goose at Supper. (pogl. II, p. 10)

Kasnije, on u knjizi pobliže opisuje dansku trpezu, pa piše kako je meso (osim teletine) lošeg kvaliteta, ali i da je zečetina i svinjetina dobra za jesti.

The Tables of the better sort are usually well furnished with Dishes, yet I cannot commend the Cheer; because the Flesh is generally lean, and (except the Beef and Veal; ill tasted, especially the tame Fowl, the fatning of which is an Art not known by above two or three, who have been taught it by an English Poulterer, lately set up at Copenhagen. Wether Mutton is very scarce, and seldom good. Wild Ducks hardly to be eaten; and Plovers never. Here are no wild Pheasants, Woodcocks, Rabbits, or Fallow Deer. Red Deer there are, but they are the King’s Game, and not to be bought for Money. The Hares are good, and the Bacon is excellent. Now and then you meet with a Cheureuil, or small Roe Buck in the Market, but it is generally lean. Sea-fish is scarce, and not good, but the River-fish makes amends, here being the best Carp, Perch, and Craw-fish that are to be found any where. One cannot expect extraordinary Fruits thus far North; yet the Gentry do not want such as are very tolerable, being extreamly addicted to Gardning; and several of the Nobility being so curious, as to have Melons, Grapes, Peaches, and all sorts of Sallads very early, and in great perfection. The Butter is very good, but the Cheese stark naught. In general, their way of Cookery would hardly be pleasing to an English man. (pogl. XIII, p. 85)

Interesantno je da su Danci, prema Molesworthu, velike pijanice, da imućni uglavnom piju Rajnsko vino, vinjak i francuska vina, a siromašni loše pivo ili danski vinjak koji se proizvodi od ječma. Gospoda i oficiri se oblače otmjeno, prema francuskoj modi, a građani i seljaci su čisti i uredni.

The Gentlemen and Officers go very fine in their Dress after the French mode; but the Ladies Winter-dress is Danish, very becoming, and convenient. The Burgers, Servants, and even Peasants, are neat and cleanly; they love change of ordinary white Linen, which is here made cheap; the Women-kind employing their leisure time in Spinning. All these People have a degree of Vanity; Pride and Poverty being often Companions to each other. (pogl. XIII, p. 86)

Robert Molesworth također smatra da se u tadašnjoj Danskoj vrlo malo pažnje posvećuje obrazovanju i nauci, kao i feštama. Uglavnom se izdaju knjige religioznog karaktera.

I do not see that they are good at imitating the Inventions of other Countries; and for inventing themselves, I believe none here, since the famous Tycho Brahe, ever pretended to it. Few or no Books are written, but what some of the Clergy compose of Religion. Not so much as a Song, or a Tune, was made, during three years that I stayed there. Their Seasons of Jollity are very rare, and since the fatal Opera about four years ago, wherein many hundred Persoos were burnt together in the old Queen’s House, they content themselves with running at the Goose on Sbrove-Tuesdays, and taking their pleasure upon Sledds in the Winter, well wrapped up in Wooll or Furr. (pogl. XIII, p. 89)

Ono što je zajedničko za tadašnju i današnju Dansku je, očigledno, oporezivanje. Molesworth tvrdi da su Danci tada plaćali tri puta veći porez kralju, nego Englezi.

I suppose by this an English Reader has taken a Surfeit of this Account of Taxes which the Subjects of Denmark do pay; but it ought to be a great Satisfaction to him to reflect, that through the happiness of our Constitution, and the prudence and valour of our King, the People of this Nation, though enjoying ten times more natural and acquired Advantages than the Danes, which causes more than ten times their affluence; do not for all that pay towards the carrying on the most necessary and just War, the third part in proportion to what the King of Denmark’s Subjects do in time of a profound Peace: Pax servientibus gravior est quam liberis bellum. (pogl. IX, p. 1069)

Nešto kasnije u sljedećem poglavlju, Molesworth zaključuje da se takvo stanje ne može dugo održati, te da Danci imaju više razloga da priželjkuju napad na zemlju nego da je brane. Zbog toga dansku vojsku uglavnom čine stranci, i to Njemci, Poljaci, Holanđani, Škoti i Šveđani, a da su Danci loši vojnici.

The Foot, both Officers and Soldiers, are for the most part Strangers of all Countries, whom Choice, or Fortune, brings thither; Germans, Poles, Courlanders, Dutch, Swedes, Scotch, Irish; and now and then an English Seaman, whom they make drunk after a long Voyage, and inveagle him by fair Promises, in that humour, to take some of the King’s Money. The Natives are, through their dispirited temper, thought very improper to make Soldiers; and besides the Landlords, whose Slaves they are, can hinder them from entring into the King’s Service, and can remand them, if any should offer so to do; as has been frequently practised by them, to avoid Misery at home, and to exchange one Slavery for another. (pogl. X, p. 126)

U 12. poglavlju Molesworth obrađuje danske odnose sa susjedima, koji su uglavnom napeti, te da među njima vlada ljubomora i nevjera, te da se odnosi s vremena na vrijeme pretvore u otvorene ratove. Sa Šveđanima odnosi su vrlo loši, koji najviše podsjećaju na loše zaliječenu ranu.

For Sweden is the most powerful, most dreaded, and nearest Neighbour of Denmark; the Territories of that King, lye as it were at the Gates of Copenhagen, the Capital City, and may be seen from the very Bedchamber of this King, ever since the Danes lost three of their best Provinces on the other side the Baltick; so that as well the Resentment of past Injuries, as the dread of future Mischiefs from the greatness of Sweden on the one side; the consciousness of being violent possessors of anothers Right, the certainty of their being hated and envied for those Acquisitions, the fear of losing them in case Denmark grow powerful on the other, are insurmountable Obstacles to any firm Friendship between these two Crowns. The ancient Quarrel, like a Wound ill healed, is but skinned over, and festers at the bottom, although our equally disobliging them in the interruption of their Traffick, has made a greater step towards their mutual Reconciliation, than was thought to be practicable. (pogl. XII, p. 176)

Molesworth malo kasnije u tekstu piše da su Danci loši susjedi kada su slabi, a nemogući kada imaju moć.

… the Danes; who are usually ill Neighbours when they are weak, but would be insupportable were their Force proportionable to their Inclinations. (pogl. XII, p. 180)

Prilikom opisa Danaca kao naroda i njihovog temperamenta, Molesworth ne razumije kako jedan narod može, pored tolikog ugnjetavanja od strane kraljevske porodice, voljeti i poštovati kralja, te da u njima nema ni tračka želje za pobunom ili kampanja protiv vlade. On to objašnjavama jednakim oporezivanjem stanovništva.

Before I conclude this Chapter, I think it very pertinent to take notice, That in Denmark there are no Seditions, Mutinies, or Libels against the Government; but all the People either are or appear to be Lovers of their King, notwithstanding their ill Treatment, and the hardships they groan under. And I suppose one principal Reason of this to be the Equality of the Taxes, and the manner of Taxing. (pogl. XV, p. 226)

Molesworth primjećuje da su Danci prilično religiozni i da redovno idu u crkve, koje se bolje održavaju nego u Engleskoj. S druge strane, u zemlji postoji samo jedan univerzitet, u Kopenhagenu, koji se ne može usporediti ni sa najgorim engleskim kolegijem.

Ono što mnogi stranci i dan-danas primjećuju u današnjoj Danskoj, očigledno je važilo i prije 300 godina. Molesworth završava svoje viđenje Danaca mišljenjem da nigdje nije vidio narod koji je istog mentalnog sklopa, tj. svi su prosječni, niko se ne uzdiže znanjem ili nekom posebnom sposobnošću, te kako nigdje nije nabasao na fantaste, istraživače i entuzijaste.

To conclude; I never knew any Country where the Minds of the People were more of one calibre and pitch than here; you shall meet with none of extraordinary Parts or Qualifications, or excellent in particular Studies and Trades; you see no Enthusiasts, Mad-men, Natural Fools, or fanciful Folks, but a certain equality of Understanding reigns among them: every one keeps the ordinary beaten road of Sence, which in this Country is neither the fairest nor the foulest, without deviating to the right or left: yet I will add this one Remark to their praise, that the Common People do generally write and read. (pogl. XVI, p. 235)

“An Account of Denmark As It was in the Year 1692” je izuzetno zanimljiva knjiga koja ima ne samo veliku historijsku vrijednost, ipak je dala, pored Molesworthove nepristrasnosti prema tadašnjem danskom uređenju, vjerodostojnu sliku jednog društva koji je dopustio da jedna osoba, kralj, apsolutistički i tiranski vlada njime, da je danska ekonomija bila u vrlo lošem stanju, da je kralj, zbog bojazni od stare vlastele, oko sebe uglavnom imao njemačke čuvare, te da su sveštenici, iako su imali veća prava govora, uglavnom koristili to pravo kako bi uzdizali kralja u nebesa.

Pri samom kraju knjige Molesworth opisuje stanje danskih seljaka i čak upoređuje odnos danskog kralja prema svojim podanicima sa turskim sultanom, koji traži dosta manje poreza od svojih kršćanskih podanika nego danski kralj od danskih seljaka, pa se tako i Bosna spominje, zajedno sa drugim tadašnjim osmanlijskim provincijama u Evropi.

The Turks are the Conquerors of the Christians in the Countries they have over-run, and have a sort of barbarous Right to use them ill; yet they never persecute them upon account of Conscience; they differ them for the most part to inhabit and cultivate their own Lands without disturbance, paying only a Caratch yearly for Tribute; which as I have been informed by a Minister of his Imperial Majesty’s, amounted in Hungary, Sclavonia, Servia, and Bosnia, only to about ten Dollars for an ordinary Family in time of Peace, and during a War nothing. It is true, the Propriety of all Lands in Turky is in the Grand Signior; but whether it be not better to be only a Farmer at an easie Rent, than to have the Name of a Proprietor without a comfortable Subsistance, and in effect to be Master of Nothing, I leave the Reader to judge.

Nakon što sam pročitao ovu knjigu, jasno mi je zašto je bila zabranjena u Kraljevini Danskoj i zašto se prvi danski prijevod pojavio tek 1977. godine, skoro tri stotine godina nakon prvog britanskog izdanja.

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