Fake news — not a so modern invention. The false information which is started up on delusion, on malicious intent, ruined reputations at all times. One of the most rationally conceiving people of the 18th century Jakov Bruce in national memory remained the mystic and even the sorcerer.
Five billion five hundred thirty four million six hundred sixteen thousand six hundred sixty three James Bruce. Oil on canvas. The first half of the XVIII century
"Also there was this Bruce the cleverest: the whole world proceed — you will not find more cleverly. Also he knew magic, and reached any sciences. Did calendars... and powders at it there, structures different... Also he could turn back a bird. And lived in the Sukharevy tower. There at it and the book, paper, bubbles it was set countless multitudes..."
It is told in 1923
to the collector of city folklore Evgeny Baranov
Moscow janitor Philip Bolyakin.
In our days in the place where the prospect of the World moving away from the Garden ring, is the usual busy intersection, and only a stele in the next square and the name of the metro station "Sukharevskaya" I remind you that until 1934 here stood Sukharev tower.The masterpiece of the Moscow Baroque, built at the end of the XVII century, was once, according to urban legends, the home of the famous sorcerer James Bruce.Were told that was the wizard in the tower on a flying ship, got myself in her alchemy lab, arcane got way gold, made of flowers the maid, and going outside to have fun, frightened the neighboring merchants mass hypnosis sessions.According to the urban legend of Modern times, Stalin himself ordered to dismantle the Sukharev tower brick by brick in vain hope to find a magical folio of count Bruce.The hero of all these stories not a fruit of national imagination — Yakov Vilimovich Bruce, the scientist and the statesman, was Peter I's friend.
In August, 1689 Moscow the message as if Sagittariuses prepare a revolt excited and are going to eliminate the 17-year-old tsar Pyotr and to give all power to his elder sister Sofya.Scared Peter in the middle of the night fled the city and took refuge in the Trinity-Sergius monastery.To help him were Streletsky regiment under the command of Lawrence Sukharev and other loyal units, including the detachment, which was a young Lieutenant Yakov Bruce of the German settlement, the son of a Scottish nobleman in the Russian service.Sofya's party lost, instigators to a mutiny were executed.In acknowledgement of devotion Pyotr enjoined on the place of Sretensky Gates at northern border of Moscow where Sukharev's regiment was located, to erect a tower of an impressive type which received Sukhareva's name.James Bruce king " saw " later: six years later, in the first Azov campaign, in which he participated as a military engineer, young people became friends.When Pyotr went to adopt with Great embassy the European experience for future reforms, it called Yakov to Holland as the most capable together to go to England.Soon in Moscow Sagittariuses rebelled again, and the tsar had to leave home, and "colonel Bruce" on his command remained to comprehend in Britain different areas of knowledge, from monetary business to mathematics with astronomy.The son of the Scottish mercenary communicated with the most prominent scientists: John Flemstid, Isaac Newton, Edmund Galley — and when returned to Russia, Peter I received in his face the live encyclopedia of the Western European sciences and the practician.
Peter and his colleagues understood: if you want to change the country-start with the education system.And actually from scratch created a system of secular special educational institutions.In 1701 Peter I founded School of mathematical and navigatsky sciences where had to train the most necessary for the tsar of professionals in Moscow: naval officers, engineers and gunners.Put it in the Sukharev tower, to the time not used as a barracks, since after the rebellion of 1698, Peter disbanded the Streltsy regiments.Also in the 64-meter building, one of the highest in Moscow of that time, Bruce equipped the Russia's first state astronomical observatory.He wrote books and tools from abroad, translated textbooks, but was not the Director of the navigation school and did not live in the Sukharev tower.
In Moscow Bruce in general was arrivals.Peter I in.current of 20 years waged war with Sweden for an exit to the Baltic Sea and needed the "live encyclopedia" at northern boundaries.In 1701-1704 Bruce was the Governor of Novgorod, from 1704 he was in charge of all Russian artillery, which was modernized according to the European model, and at the same time constantly took part in hostilities.In 1713 Yakov Vilimovich transported members of household to the new capital, St. Petersburg.On the alchemical experiments in the Moscow residence of the reformer, military leader, diplomat simply didn't have time.
"And here is say, if in this house in wall Board embedded. How many times painted over, and it can be seen - does not take the paint. And if in this place he immured his wife, and for what, for what guilt-I do not know."
It is told in 1924 by a certain worker.
The mansion of count Musin-Pushkin at Spartakovskaya street, house 2, building 1 (formerly Elokhovskaya), is famous mainly for the fact that during the Moscow fire of 1812 in it burned the manuscript "The words of Igor's regiment", and today in this building is the Moscow state University of civil engineering.However, at the beginning of the XX century "house on the Rampage" (called so by the name of the square) had a bad reputation: it was believed that once there lived a sorcerer Bruce, hence the speculation about the mysterious Board on the facade of the building, reminiscent of the shape of the coffin.Actually the mansion was built in the 1790-1800th years, more half a century later later death of Yakov Vilimovich.And the building was connected with his family here is how: the pravnuchaty niece the column Ekaterina Yakovlevna Bruce married Vasily Musin-Pushkin who attached her glorified surname to the.Marriage as a result broke up, and the association remained.The board as established moskvoveda, served as the sundial and the calendar, however over time a core which shadow fell on the dial, disappeared, and figures painted over.
And especially the Petrovsky grandee did not immure any wife anywhere.With the General's daughter Margarita von Manteifel of the Baltic Germans, which in Russia was called Martha Andreevna, James Bruce lived in harmony for 32 years.However, in folk tales "Brucia" the victim's husband as the warlock, on the contrary, the culprit of his death.On one of legends, Bruce created water of life and ordered to the pupil to kill him, and then to revive looked younger by means of a wonderful elixir, however the adulteress of the magician raskolotit a vessel with a medicine.In reality, Bruce survived Marfa Andreevna for seven years and was buried next to her in Moscow, in the Lutheran Church of St. Michael, in the area of modern Radio street (the Church has not survived).
"Once in summer day Bruce organized a solemn congress of guests in the estate, there was a formal dinner party after which guests were ridden on ponds on boats. And there were brilliant fireworks in the evening... And here under a thunder and gloss of rockets it waved a magic wand, and — about a miracle! — guests uvidat that the pond turned into an ice skating rink, and the hospitable owner invites them to skate".
The story of the guide in the estate Glinka,
recorded in 1982 by hydraulic engineer Vyacheslav Malakhanov.
Bruce really lived in the estate of Glinka situated near Moscow.He bought this estate in 1727, when after the death of Peter I retired and left St. Petersburg, away from the court intrigues.Bruce reconstructed the estate, having organized himself observatory and laboratory there, and was engaged in scientific researches, and according to legends — also magic.However, the Doctor of Engineering Vyacheslav Malakhanov offered a rational explanation for focus with the stiffened pond: the ice which is in advance frozen on at the bottom of a reservoir in the winter and protected from thawing by the heat-insulating layer from straw and boards in the necessary day could be filled in with water from the reported pond, and then to lower this water and to enjoy the effect which is had on guests.It is quite feasible reception, that's only to this day has not reached the evidence of contemporaries that Bruce generally had a tendency to such tricks.
* * *
So, maybe, Bruce passed for the sorcerer just because was engaged in sciences, exotic for the inhabitant of the 18th century? Then why the people did not consider magicians of the famous scientists — Mikhail Lomonosov or, say, Leo Euler's nard? And maybe, where there's smoke there is fire, and Yakov Vilimovich really was fond of occultism?
However Pyotr and Bruce's any contemporary in the sources which reached us does not report about "charodeysky" reputation of Yakov Vilimovich.On the contrary, the tsar's confidant Andrey Nartov wrote: "The count Bruce the husband was a scientist, practised in high sciences and chrezjestestvenny did not trust".The modern Russian historian Alexander Philemon claims: legends of Bruce magician appeared not earlier than the 1810-1820th years.Also offers an explanation why they in general arose.The matter is that Jakov Bruce at the request of Pyotr supervised Vasily Kiprianov's printing house founded in Moscow in 1705 which was releasing including calendars — with signs, calculations of dates of religious holidays for every year and translated astrological forecasts.And since the name of the curator was very authoritative, in the course of numerous reissues the note "under the supervision of Yakov vilimovich Bruce" turned into the name " Bruce calendar».Already other printing houses continued to release different versions of the calendar under a "branded" surname up to the beginning of the 20th century, and in the people idea of Bruce as about the surprising magician who predicted future to each person was approved.In legends remembered to it both occupations astronomy, and the general erudition, and vague association with the Sukharevy tower.So, as they say, it was worth once allowed to print a calendar with an astrological forecast...
Photo: FINE-ART-IMAGES (X5) / LEGION-MEDIA, LANA1501 / PHOTOBANK LORI ALEXANDER MIKISHEV / PHOTOBANK LORI, a PR AGENCY SARAFAN / TASS
Material is published in the magazine No. 12, December, 2018.