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Distributed for University of Alaska Press

Until Death Do Us Part

The Letters and Travels of Anna and Vitus Bering

Eighteenth-century Danish explorer Vitus Bering led historic expeditions to the Russian Far East and Alaska under the patronage of Peter the Great, and his wife Anna Christina accompanied him on his expedition to Okhotsk in 1739. The sixteen letters that they wrote over the following year make up the core of this volume, which features facing-page translations from the original German. The documents offer an intimate look into eighteenth-century customs, as well as the explorer’s family life and daily routine. Also featured is an inventory of goods that Anna Christina brought back to Moscow after Bering’s death in 1742, revealing key insights into the types of goods available in Russia at the time. Until Death Do Us Part is a richly informative volume that will be essential for all those interested in European history and travel writing.

178 pages | 22 halftones, 3 maps | 6 x 9 | © 2008

Biography and Letters

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Preface to the American Edition
Note on Archival Terms and Abbreviations
Chapter One: The Russian Columbus
The Imperial Vision
Russia’s Eastward Expansion
The Kamchatka Expeditions
Chapter 2: Sojourn in Iakutsk
The East Siberian Command Post
The Geometry Brawl and Its Aftermath
Plautin’s Accusations Against Anna and Vitus Bering
Chapter 3: Background on the Letters
Courier Mail from Okhotsk
How the Letters Survived
The Boys and the In-Laws
Chapter 4: The Letters
A Note on the Letters
Eleven Letters to the Family
Five Letters to the Professor, the Resident, and Their Wives
Janeman’s Repatriation
Chapter 5: The Couple’s Belongings
Anna Bering’s Journey Home
Chapter 6: The Estate’s Odyssey
Appendix 1
Appendix 2
Appendix 7
Noteworthy Items

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