Authors Moller and Lind examine the family life of explorer Vitus Bering through his personal letters and those of his wife, Anna Christina. Bering led two historic expeditions to the Russian Far East and Alaska under the patronage of Tsar Peter the Great. His wife Anna accompanied him to Okhotsk and over a period of two months in 1739-1740, she and her husband wrote sixteen letters. These letters offer intimate glimpses of family relationships and the concerns of daily life, as well as insight into eighteenth-century mores.
Each letter is translated with the originals reproduced on the facing page. Also included are several lists of items brought by Anna Christina back to Moscow in 1742, after the death of her husband. These inventories tell us about what items were considered valuable, as well as about the sort of trade goods were available to early settlers in the Russian Far East.
Peter Ulf Moller is Professor of Slavic Studies at the University of Aarthus, Denmark. He has published extensively on Russian literature, culture, and history.
Natasha Okhotina is a Research Fellow in Russian History at the University of Copenhagan. She has published works in the areas of Medieval and Early Modern Russian history.
Anna Halager, was born in Odense, Denmark in 1939 but now lives in a quiet street only five minutes walk from a beautiful lake and twelve minutes on the metro to downtown Copenhagen. Her desire to translate this book was triggered by a visit to the Frankfurt Book Fair in 1998 and an international workshop two months later entitled Under Vitus Bering's Command in Copenhagen hosted by the two authors of this book. She takes a particular interest in letters and diaries as manifested in literature and would like to see much more aspects of the Kamchatka Expeditions translated for the English-speaking world.