to Ivan Vasilyevich for advice about machinery. There were

From the 16th or 18th of June to the end of the month there is no night. The sun appears only to retire for a short time behind a mountain, and forms sunset and morning-dawn at the same time. As on one side the last beam fades away, the orb of day re-appears at the opposite one with redoubled splendour.

to Ivan Vasilyevich for advice about machinery. There were

During my stay in Iceland, from the 15th of May to the 29th of July, I never retired to rest before eleven o'clock at night, and never required a candle. In May, and also in the latter portion of the month of July, there was twilight for an hour or two, but it never became quite dark. Even during the last days of my stay, I could read until half-past ten o'clock. At first it appeared strange to me to go to bed in broad daylight; but I soon accustomed myself to it, and when eleven o'clock came, no sunlight was powerful enough to cheat me of my sleep. I found much pleasure in walking at night, at past ten o'clock, not in the pale moonshine, but in the broad blaze of the sun.

to Ivan Vasilyevich for advice about machinery. There were

It was a much more difficult task to accustom myself to the diet. The baker's wife was fully competent to superintend the cooking according to the Danish and Icelandic schools of the art; but unfortunately these modes of cookery differ widely from ours. One thing only was good, the morning cup of coffee with cream, with which the most accomplished gourmand could have found no fault: since my departure from Iceland I have not found such coffee. I could have wished for some of my dear Viennese friends to breakfast with me. The cream was so thick, that I at first thought my hostess had misunderstood me, and brought me curds. The butter made from the milk of Icelandic cows and ewes did not look very inviting, and was as white as lard, but the taste was good. The Icelanders, however, find the taste not sufficiently "piquant," and generally qualify it with train-oil. Altogether, train-oil plays a very prominent part in the Icelandic kitchen; the peasant considers it a most delicious article, and thinks nothing of devouring a quantity of it without bread, or indeed any thing else. { 32}

to Ivan Vasilyevich for advice about machinery. There were

I did not at all relish the diet at dinner; this meal consisted of two dishes, namely, boiled fish, with vinegar and melted butter instead of oil, and boiled potatoes. Unfortunately I am no admirer of fish, and now this was my daily food. Ah, how I longed for beef- soup, a piece of meat, and vegetables, in vain! As long as I remained in Iceland, I was compelled quite to give up my German system of diet.

After a time I got on well enough with the boiled fish and potatoes, but I could not manage the delicacies of the island. Worthy Madame Bernhoft, it was so kindly meant on her part; and it was surely not her fault that the system of cookery in Iceland is different from ours; but I could not bring myself to like the Icelandic delicacies. They were of different kinds, consisting sometimes of fishes, hard- boiled eggs, and potatoes chopped up together, covered with a thick brown sauce, and seasoned with pepper, sugar, and vinegar; at others, of potatoes baked in butter and sugar. Another delicacy was cabbage chopped very small, rendered very thin by the addition of water, and sweetened with sugar; the accompanying dish was a piece of cured lamb, which had a very unpleasant "pickled" flavour.

On Sundays we sometimes had "Prothe Grutze," properly a Scandinavian dish, composed of fine sago boiled to a jelly, with currant-juice or red wine, and eaten with cream or sugar. Tapfen, a kind of soft cheese, is also sometimes eaten with cream and sugar.

In the months of June and July the diet improved materially. We could often procure splendid salmon, sometimes roast lamb, and now and then birds, among which latter dainties the snipes were particularly good. In the evening came butter, cheese, cold fish, smoked lamb, and eggs of eider-ducks, which are coarser than hen's eggs. In time I became so accustomed to this kind of food, that I no longer missed either soup or beef, and felt uncommonly well.

My drink was always clear fresh water; the gentlemen began their dinner with a small glass of brandy, and during the meal all drank beer of Herr Bernhoft's own brewing, which was very good. On Sundays, a bottle of port or Bordeaux sometimes made its appearance at our table; and as we fared at Herr Bernhoft's, so it was the custom in the houses of all the merchants and officials.



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