THE STEEL FLEA
Platoff travelled very swiftly, and in state: he himself sat in the calash, and on the box sat two Cossacks of the Imperial Suite with nagaikas, one on each side of the coachman, whom they belabored unmercifully, so that he should drive at a gallop. And if one of these Cossacks fell into a doze, Platoff kicked him out of the calash, and they drove on harder than ever. These means of encouragement operated so efficaciously that it was impossible to bring the horses to a halt at a single posting-station, and they always overran the stopping-place by a hundred leaps. Then the Suite-Cossack would work upon the coachman in the oppo-
- By the transposition of a letter, the old armorer contrives to call them "whistle-Cossacks."
- Cossack whip—really, the Tatar whip used by the Cossacks, and all mountaineers, of the Tatar and Mongolian tribes. It is a short, thick, round leather lash, all of one size, without a tapering tip.
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