The Three Chief Ethnic Elements of Russia--The Finns--Are they an
Element that Has no Parallel in Western Europe?--Diversity and
Isolation of such Finn Groups as Still Survive--Their Part in the
Formation of the Russian People--The Russian Type and the Finn
Stamp--Is this Relationship a Cause of Inferiority for Russia?--
Capacity of the Finns for Civilization.
OUT of the apparent chaos of Russian ethnology three main elements--Finn, Tatar, Slav--clearly emerge, the last having by this time in a great measure absorbed the other two. Setting aside the three or four millions of Jews in the West, the eight or nine hundred thousand Rumanians in Bessarabia, and one million at least of Germans, scattered from north to south,--setting aside also the Kalmỳks of the steppe of the Lower Volga; the Tchetchens, the Lezghians, the Armenians, and the entire Babel of the Caucasus,--all the peoples or tribes that have invaded Russia in the past, all those that inhabit her to-day, can be traced to one of these three races. As far back as we may pursue history, representatives of each of these three groups are found, under one name or another, on Russian soil, and their fusion is not even yet so complete as to conceal from sight the distinctive traits of each, or the area on which they respectively held their sway.
The Finn or Tchud race* seems to have in olden times occupied the greater part of the territory we nowadays call Russia.____________________