Central Asia and Tibet: Towards the Holy City of Lhasa - Vol. 1

Central Asia and Tibet: Towards the Holy City of Lhasa - Vol. 1

Central Asia and Tibet: Towards the Holy City of Lhasa - Vol. 1

Central Asia and Tibet: Towards the Holy City of Lhasa - Vol. 1

Excerpt

In offering, as I do in the following pages, the results of my latest travels in Central Asia to the English-speaking world, my first duty must be to thank all those who have in various ways contributed to the success of the journey. In the first place, my sincere and earnest thanks must be tendered to His Majesty King Oscar of Sweden and Norway. With his accustomed generosity and enlightenment he made possible the inception of an undertaking, the success of which was in no slight degree due to his valuable assistance and his distinguished patronage. During the many years which I have devoted to the exploration of the little-known interior of Asia His Majesty has always followed my movements with the warmest interest and sympathy, graciously encouraging me to fresh efforts, and honouring me in the most flattering way after each new success. To him, therefore, I desire to express my deepest and most heartfelt gratitude.

To His Imperial Majesty the Czar of Russia I also owe a heavy debt of gratitude for the invaluable support he was pleased to afford me. The services which his Cossacks rendered me were such as money alone could not repay. In my caravan there was not the faintest echo of those bloody and hostile passages which in the past have more than once clouded the relations between Swedes and Russians. Seldom have I been served with such signal devotion and zeal as I was during the three years I had the good fortune to have associated with me these four Cossacks of the Czar's great army. At the same time may I also express my heartfelt thanks to His Excellency, General Kuropatkin, Russian Minister of War, for the valuable assistance he so kindly rendered me? After the very substantial help which King Oscar so generously gave me by way of a start, I experienced no difficulty in raising the funds necessary for my journey, long and important though it was. I had no need to appeal to any except my own countrymen; and amongst them I had on this, as on former occasions, no more liberal friend than M. Emanuel Nobel, of St. Petersburg.

The Swedish edition of this book I have dedicated to my deeply revered parents, as a slight token of the love and affection I owe them . . .

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