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Russian Flax/Hemp Bale Seals


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Website design, maps and photos by Ged Dodd - Director of The PeaceHavens Project.

Click here for the Project Site Map and Links




Aberlady Bay Scotland

Adel Beck Flax Mills

Agent names list

Aked's High Mill

Anchor Crescent Symbols

Anchor and Grapnel Port Seals

Archangel, Archangelsk

Ardamatzky (Ardamazki)

Bale sizes and weights

Baltic Ports

Baltic Cross Seals


Bentham High Mill

Black Balsam

Black Death


Bulla Seals


Circular Dated Seals

Cloth Bale Clamps  

Cog, Cogge

Crescents Stars and *T*'s

Crimping Tools

Custom Tax Seals

Cyrillic Alphabet



Double Balsam

Dutch Custom Seals

Easingwold Seals

Ebling (Eblag) in Poland

Email - Ged Dodd

Eye Customs Seals

FaceBook - PeaceHavens

Fife Seals article by John Sullivan

Fish Market

Flax Trade Facts

Flax/Fur Trade Villages

Folly Gill Twine Mill  

Galeas & Galliots - Trading Ships

Ged's Rules for Hemp Seal Indent

Gold Coin Weight

Gostorg State Trading Agency

Grading of flax

Great Plague of London

Grower list 

Guano Seals- Icelandic

Guano Seals - Star of David

Hands of Friendship Seals

Hanseatic League


Hemp Seals

Hemp & Flax Port Inspectors

Helmsley Seals

Hills and Whishaw

HMS Victory

Hull import trade


Inspector designation initials

Jews in the Flax Trade

John Marshall

John Sullivan Article on Fife

Ю T - State Customs Tax

Kildin - White Sea - fur trade

Kinghorn Mills


Lancaster Maritime Museum

Leubeck Harbour

Libau - Leipaja


Little Patrick Mill

Liverpool Docks, Castle, Mersey

Lost Village of West End

Low Mill

Magnifying Linen Thread Counter

Matthew Murray

Meaning of Abbreviations


Moscow Polytechnic Exhibition

Moscow Tax Custom Seals

Napoleonic War


Novgored, Novgorod

NP Port Narva Conundrum


Numbers Only Seals

Owner list

Paired Inspectors

Pavlov Star Seals


Piracy and Warfare

Portuguese Gold Coin Weight

Quayside in Medieval Times

Railway Seals

Regten en Accynsen

Rein (Rhine) Hemp R:H


Reval, Revel

Riga - Black Balsam

Riga - City Keys

Riga - German influence

Russian State Arms Seals


Ships - Galeas & Galliots

Sklad - depot warehouse

Sort 1 2 3

Spindle Whorls

Spinning Wheels

St George's Quay, Lancaster

St Petersburg City Arms

St Petersburg Seals

Star of David

Star Seals

Stars, Crescents and *T*'s

*T*'s, Stars and Crescents


Tax Custom Seals

Three Pound Twelve Coin Weight

Topsham Hemp Trade


Trade Tokens

Village Seals

V.LED owner

Wass Seals

Weather Forecast

West End Mills

West House Mill

Wheel Cranes

Whinny Hill seal field




Hands Of Friendship Seals

Found in fields where the seals were  predominately dated 1829 and 1831.

The only known seals of this type

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1812 Hands of Friendship

One Penny Copper Token

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Rare Pavlov Star Seals

Many Jews in St Petersburg were

involved in the Flax trade .

The six-pointed star, the Magen

David, the Shield of David, the

Star of David, is also known as

a hexagram, or Solomon's Seal.

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Mistakes by Seal Makers

SS32H ... should be SS12H

 .. they only did 6H, 9H or

 12H flax heads to the bale.

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The first Archangel Seal

found at Folly Gill Mill

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An antique brass thread counter

used by a travelling cloth buyer to

measure the quality of the linen.

It was found in the seal fields.



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Three Pound Twelve brass coin

weight found near the Old Gate

Inn Smithy at West End Mills

which was used to check the

weight of the gold Portuguese

8 Escudos coins brought over to

pay for Linen Goods  c.1800.



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Russian Railways

1877 Customs Guards, Porters

Railway Guards, Rural Police,

Interior of Railway Carriage.


click on the thumbnail


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Website design & photos by Ged Dodd

Director - The PeaceHavens Project.
and powered with free uploading from 



 DICTIONARY (a collection of notes for my own use but feel free to use them or correct me)


   A. Archangel  .. also APX, APXA, APXAH, APXAHГ, APXAHГEЛ. ( APXAHAГЛЬCK.  Archangel'sk )

   ‘A11’ in a square on Russian Tax seal stand for Alexander II (1855-1881),

   Alexandrosky Works .. a government owned linen mill near to St Petersburg

   AO = Акционерное Общество  = Joint Stock Company, on rare occasions this replaces the inspector designation of ЛД

    or ПД. The company inspector was called Cherntsov
   A.П (A.P).  Archangel Port


   Б (B). Brack is quality control. БP, БPA, БPAKЬ. (Baraak)

   БР. = БPAKOBЩ = ВRACKED (Inspected)

   БР. = ВРАТЬЯ = brothers eg. БР.БУБНОВЫ  the brothers Bubnovy
   brakovshchik bracker, Quality Control Officer,   brakovshchiki brackers, Quality Control Officers

   Baron Steiglitz Works .. large spinning and weaving factory near Narva specialising in sail cloth.

   BRAKOVSHCHIK = a bracker (person).


   BИЛEГOДCKOИ (VILEGODSKOI) flax from Vilegda river region.

   ВОД.ЗАВОДЪ Vodka distillary

   ВОЛЬНЫЕ СЛУЖИТЕЛИ Bol'nye Cluzhiteli which is floor attendants

   BOЛOГДA see (VOLOGDA) city and region


   BIT is the part of the key which goes in the lock.

   BOW is the part outside the lock that you turn.   see Riga page



   CARELIA was superior grade to Novogorod flax bales.

   ЧИСТА (chista = clean) from 173 3 R hemp seal

   CKЛAД (SKLAD) is a Transport Depot or Warehouse

   CKЛAДCKOI  ПРІЕМ (SKLADSKOI PRIEM) is a Warehouse Receipt

   СЫНОВЬЯ (SYNOV'Ya) = sons of

   CODILLA (Cedilla) (Paklya) ПAKЛЯ is Scutching Tow. Broken fibres from Scutching  or the Heckled Tow is used for

    Tow yarns.  (The broken flax, the coarse part of the flax which falls off from the good flax after the first heckling process

    and which is made up in bundles of one pood each which are then shipped in large bundles of thirty.)

   CПБ. SPB .. St Petersburg ... also used as an indicator of flax after 1829. 

   CПБ.TA.OTP.TOB = CПБ.TAMOЖHЯ.OTPACЛЬ.TOBAP  St Petersburg Customs Department Goods  

   Customs Officers are Tsolnery, Chief Customs Officers are Obertsolnery

   C. CEЛO = Selo = Village

   C Sort

   С.ЗАП = СЕВЕРО-ЗАПАДНЫЙ  = North Western / Ж.Д. = Railroad

   COPT, COPTЬ (сортировать) SORT, grade, select, screen

   CT (ST) Railway Station (СТАНЦИЯ) Stantsiya

   CTЛ.3 a flax grading unique in 1831


   ЧESKA (CHESKA) Low grade heckled flax heckled flax *Ч* (hesanyj len = ‘long line’ i.e. long flax)


   Д (D) DESYATNIK a Quality Control Officer -  was selected by ten  brackers themselves who worked under his (or her)

    direct supervision to carry out the inspection and certify on their behalf the bundle to which the seal was fastened.


      suggesting  ДeСЯЦK, ДЕСЯЦKO, ДЕСЯЦKOИ are higher ranking Tsolnery or Customs Officers.

   ДВОЙНОЙ РИЖСКИЙ БАЛЬЗАМ is Double Riga Balsam

   ДВИГАТЕЛЬ = DVIGATEL the Carriage Building Works in Talinn

    ДОМ is house

   Dosmotrsshchiki are various inspectors


   Д = D = Inspector

   Д8 = D8 is on 2 flaz seals for Sysoev but the other 3 are ДЗ = DZ
   ДA = DA is on flax and hemp seals

   ДB = DV (Vologda region). both flax and hemp seals (Insp.Shelepin)
   ДC = DS is on flax and hemp seals
   ДE = DE is on flax seals (to date)
   ДФ = DF is on flax and hemp seals

   ДӨ = DTh a strange letter or symbol we have yet to decipher
   ДГ = DG is on flax seals (to date)
   ДI = DI is on flax seals (to date)
   ДИ = DI is on flax and hemp seals

   ДII = DII is on hemp seals  (to date - possibly DP)
   ДIK = DIK is on hemp seals (to date)
   ДIB = DIV is from John Sullivan's book 
   ДK = DK is on flax seals (to date)
   ДЛ = DL  flax inspector seals ONLY.
   ДЛI = DLI  flax inspector seals ONLY.
   ДM = DM is on flax seals and hemp seals.

   ДN = DN is on flax seals

   ДT = DT is on flax seals. (to date)
   ДЯ = DYa is on flax seals. (to date)
   ДЗ = DZ is on flax seals and hemp seals.

 -    ------also

   ЛД = LD is L'nyanoy Dosmotr (Flax Inspection ONLY)

   ЛП (Flax Dockside {Port} inspector)

   ЛПC (Flax Dockside Senior {Port} inspector)

   ПД = PD is Penkovy Dosmotr (Hemp Inspection ONLY)

   ПД = PD is also dockside inspector (Portovy Dosmotr) but only when in the inspector definition shown below ПiЛПД.

   ПiЛПД = PiLPD= Hemp and Flax Dockside Inspection seal (Penkovy i L'nyanoy Portovy Dosmotr)  see the Hemp page.

   ПП (Hemp Dockside {Port} inspector)

   ППC (Hemp Dockside Senior {Port} inspector)  (ЦЦC)

   ЦЦC = TsTsS ( Tsolnery are customs officers)


   FACTOR acts for another, notably a mercantile and colonial agent.

   ФАБРИКА (FABRIKA) is a Factory





   HECKLED TOW (Paklya) (Codilla) is Scutching Tow. Broken fibres from Scutching or Heckling used for Tow yarns.

     (to heckle’ was to dress flax by separating it into its finest fibres)

   H = Hell, Heel, LIGHT, YELLOW

   H = Heide, TOW when used as the base letter  . 

   HD = Hoffdreibandt, HOFF'S THREEBAND. (English) from Livonia.

   HFPK (Hoff) Yellow Fine Picked Crown flax. 

   H (N) .. post number the inspector worked from (or possibly the registration number stamped of the seal crimping pliers)

   ‘ H1’ in a square on Russian Tax seal stand for Nicholas I (1825-1855)  and Alexander II (1855-1881),


      ie “People’s Commissariat of Foreign Trade Gostorg”.



   I.I. the notation used by Hills and Wishaw instead of the normal NP/SPB

   I. I and I. I.C perhaps distortions of П.П and П.П.C port hemp inspectors



   КОНОЛИН...  KONOPLI ...  KONOPLYA   is hemp

   KONTPOЛ (KONTROL) Control .. check point


   K.X.C.Ж.Д = K.Kh.S.Zh.D is the  Kursk-Kharkov-Sebastopol-Railway-Company

   KUDEL (TOW)   KУДEЛЬ,   KУДѣЛЯ,  KУДѣЛЬЯ,  is the coarse broken part of  hemp after the Heckling and

     Scutching processes.

   KУДEЛЬH  (KUDEL'N) is the coarse broken part of flax after the Heckling and Scutching processes. see Codilla


   ЛEH, ЛЬНЯ  flax

   ЛЬНЯНОЕ. (L'NYANOY)   Flax, Linen

   ЛД = LD is the designation for flax inspector (L'nyanoy Dosmotr)

   ЛЬНЯНОЕ БPAKOBЩ is flax that has passed inspection with these abbreviations  ЛHAБPA, ЛHAЯH, ЛHA БPAK,


   ЛИЧ (LICH) is personal or pertaining to a particular person..

   ЛП (Flax Dockside {Port} inspector)

   ЛПC (Flax Dockside Senior {Port} inspector)


   МЕЛЬНИЦА (Mel'jnitsa) .. Mill

   Moscow State Customs Tax seals see Tax Custom Seals

   МОВКОВ(СКАЯ)   ПОЛИТЕХ(НИЧЕСКИЙ)  ВЫСТ(АВКА) is the Moscow  Polytechnic Exhibition (1872)

   M.K.B.Ж.Д = M.K.V.Zh.D  Moscow-Kiev-Vorenezh-Railway-Company


   MUITA (MUITINES) is Riga Customs Tax Authority in Latvia



   N (H) post number the inspector worked from (or possibly the registration number stamped on the seal crimping pliers) 

   N. Norwegian

   NIVILEGODSKOI Lower Sukhona flax


   NOVOGOROD was a source of best quality flax for St Petersburg


   Obertsolnery are Chief Customs officers

    Oblast is an administrative division of a City or region .


   P. Poland

   P (R),  PУ,  PУKA,  (RUKA) grade, class

   (2 PУКИ (2 ruki) (= 2nd sort / 9-head)

   PEN.  ПEH.  Hemp

   PEN'KA.  ПEHЬKA  Hemp

   РИЖСКИЙ  БАЛЬСАМЪ = Riga Balsam



   POOD used as a weight for bales (63 poods make an English ton) 60 poods of flax and 40 poods of flax codilla make

     a "last" in St Petersburg.

   ПРИГОТ.(ОВЛЕН) Prepared .. Riga Balsam

   ПРИГОТОВИЛЪ А.ВОЛЬФШМИТЪ РИГА  Prepared by A.Wolfsmith of Riga

   PSKOVE was a source of best quality flax for St Petersburg

   ПAKЛЯ.  PAKLYA (Codilla) is Scutching Tow. Broken fibres from Scutching or Heckling used  for Tow yarns.

   ПAKЛЯ ЧECKA heckled codilla

   ПД = PD is the inspector designation for hemp (Penkovy Dosmotr).

   ПД = PD is also dockside inspector (Portovy Dosmotr) in special circumstances ..

   ПiЛПД = PiLPD= Hemp and Flax Dockside Inspection seal (Penkovy i L'nyanoy Portovy Dosmotr)  see Hemp page.

   ПП (Hemp Dockside {Port} inspector)

   ППC (Hemp Dockside Senior {Port} inspector)  (ЦЦC)

   ПEH1. PEN1 first grade hemp

   ПEH2. PEN2 second grade hemp

   ПEH3. PEN3 third grade hemp


   П, ПO, ПOP, ПOPTЪ, ПOTPA.  Port {Dockside}

   ПИК и ВОД.ЗАВОДЪ Liquer & Vodka distillary

   ПРІЕМ (PRIEM) is a Receipt (for a warehouse)

   PIГA. Riga

   PIЖOПOPTA. Riga Port


   PУКИ = RUKI = grade.

   ПУКН = PUKN = PICK a term which replaced sort and grade also called Pink.



   Riga Balsam = РИЖСКИЙ  БАЛЬСАМЪ

   RIGAS MUITA is Riga Customs Tax Authority in Latvian

   Riga Flax Grades  K, PK, FPK, SPK, HK, HPK, HSPK  .. see the table ..


   SCUTCHING TOW (Paklya) (Codilla) is HeckledTow. Broken fibres from Scutching or Heckling used for Tow yarns.

   SKLAD (CKЛAД) is a Transport Depot or Warehouse and a ( ТОРГОВЫЙ ДОМЬ is a TRADING HOUSE)


   SPB. CПБ St Petersburg .. also used to designate hemp seals before 1829 & flax after 1829 when on the reverse of seals.



   SPOLYYCHEGODSH is a region on the Vilegda river in the Vologda Province which produced high quality flax.

   SUKHONA is a river in the Vologda Province from where the Ustyug region produced high quality flax.




   TAMOЖHЯ.OTPACЛЬ.TOBAP = Customs Department Goods

   TAYPOГ. = TAUROGEN = now TAURAGE in Lithuania 

   T.D) Т.Д = ТОРГОВЫЙ ДОМЬ = TRADING HOUSE and a (SKLAD (CKЛAД) is a Transport Depot or Warehouse)


   TOW (KUDEL)   KУДEЛЬ,   KУДѣЛЯ,  KУДѣЛЬЯ, KУДEЛЬH is the coarse broken part of hemp or flax after the

     Heckling and Scutching processes. see Codilla

   ТРАВНЫЙ БАЛЗАМЪ   Herb Balsam


Ц  Tsolnery are customs officers which would suggest ДeСЯЦK, ДЕСЯЦKO, ДЕСЯЦKOИ are high ranking inspectors.


   USTYUG is a region on the Sukhona river in the Vologda Province which produced  high quality flax.


   V = Voblast an administrative division of a State.  (Oblast is an administrative division of a City).

   V.ARCHANGELESK = B.АРХАНГЕЛѢСКЬ an administrative division incorporating Archangel City..

   VELIKOSELSKOI (BEЛИKOCEЛCKOИ) VELIKO-SELO-SKOI means Veliko Village region. See towns ..

  VIATKA (VYATKA) an area of long fibre flax and Tow for Archangel.

   VILEGODSKOI (BИЛEГOДCKOИ) high quality flax from the Vilegda

     river "Spolvychegodsh" region in Vologda Province..

   VOLOGDA (BOЛOГДA) a city and region found on the seals of   HILLS & WHISHAW COMPANY. See towns.


  WASNIKOW was superior grade to Novogorod flax bales.

  WHITE RUSSIA was a source of best quality flax for Riga

  WILNA FLAX.. a fine flax originally exported via Memel and Konigsberg until the arrival of the Edlykuhu railway whereupon it was transported directly to Konigsberg.


   YAROSLAVL PROVINCE. Most of the flax produced here was kept in Russia for the production of Yaroslavl Linen. 

   Ю.B.Ж.Д = Yu.V.Zh.D = Yugo-Vostochnaya-Railroad

   Юго-Восточная железная дорога  = South Eastern Railroad. 

   Ю.З.Ж.Д = Yu.Z.Zh.D = Yugo-Vostochnaya-Railroad

   Юго-Западный железная дорога  =  South Western Railroad.

     ЗАВ. = ЗАВОД = Plant, factory, distillery. Riga Balsam.

   Ж.Д = Zh.D = ЖEЛEЗHAЯ ДOPOГA = Railroad Company


   1-COPTЬ. 1st Sort, Firsts, clean

   2-COPTЬ. 2nd Sort, Seconds, short (Outshot)

  3-COPTЬ. 3rd Sort, Thirds, half clean



      From the late 18th Century Riga had a method of grading flax for sale on the world

        markets which, unfortunately, was committed to paper, and not put on the seals.

   Flax Grade Letters (1863) Belfast Linen Trade Circular and others.

   The letter on the right of the group was called the Base Letter to which other letters were

    added at the front to further describe the flax. Riga gradeswere also used at other ports.


  3 = Threeband

  4 = Fourband is superior to 3-band , both exported to England from Libau & Memel.

  B = Badstuben, a type of Threeband (Drujaner & Coupland flax)

  BG = Badstuben Geschnitten, Badstuben Cut (as above)

  CM = Crown Marienburg.

  CR = Courland Rakitzer was not as good as the other Rakitzers

  CPH = Crukken Pass Hemp .. preferred types are from Russia and Poland

  D = Driebandt, Threeband. The City Arms used alone for Threeband flax in Memel.

  DC = Druana Crown from Tilsit

  DD = Drujaner Dreibandt, Drujaner Threeband .

  DR = Druana (Drujaner) Rakitzer, High Quality White Russian .

  DRD = Drujaner Risten Dreibandt, Drujaner Bundle Threeband was fine in fibre, moderately long, clean, soft, white, silver coloured and fit for spinning the finest yarns. .

  DW = Dreibandt Wrack, Threeband Brack

  F = Fein, Fine

  FHD = Fein Hoff's Driebandt, Fine Hoff's Threeband;

  FPHD = Fein Puik Hoff's Driebandt, Fine Picked Threeband. (Portuguese)

  FPK = Fein Puik Kron, Fine Picked Crown.

  FPSD = Fein Puik Slansky Driebandt, Fine Picked Slanitz Threeband, Fine Pink Slansky threeband.

  FWPCM = Fine White Picked Crown Marienburg flax from the port of Koenigsberg. 

  G. German

  G = BEST from Pernau

  G = Geschnitten, cut rejected crown.

  G = Grau, Grey.

  GRD = Geschnitten Risten Dreibandt, cut bundle threeband.

  GW = Giligen Brack, Low Grade Threeband.

  H = Hell, Heel, Light, Yellow.

  H = Heide, TOW when used as the base letter  . 

  HD = Hoffdreibandt, Hoff's Threeband (English) from Livonia.

  HFPK (Hoff) Yellow Fine Picked Crown flax. 

  K = KPOHЪ (Kron) Crown is high quality long strong filament flax. Better grades are PK, FPK & ZK.

  KPC = Konigsberg Podolia Crown from Tilsit

  KRK = Kourland Rakitzer Kron, High Quality Courland Rakitzer Crown.

  LC = Lithuanian Czukken hemp is as Rein Hemp but less oily and soft.

  LD = Leiden Dreibandt, Lieden Threeband.

  LD = Lithuanian Dreibandt, Lithuanian Threeband.

  LD = Livonian Dreibandt, Lindlandischan Threeband from Livonia

  LH = Livonian Hoffdreibandt, Livonian Threeband Hoff from Livonia

  LOD = Livonian Ordinary Driebandt, Threeband.

  LR = Lithuanian Rakitzer, High Quality Lithuanian flax but not as good as the other Rakitzers

  LRK = Lithuanian Rakitzer Kron, High Quality Lithuanian Krown flax

  LS = Lithuanian Slanitz .. dew retted via Riga .. also called Wellish Slanitz or Wiasma Slanitz

  M = Marienburg or Marienburg Clean, High grade Crown, a source of best quality Livonian flax for Riga.

  MБ possibly Marienburg Badstube, a second grade flax from Riga .

  MG = Marienburg Geschnitten, Second Quality Marienburg.

  MR = Marienburg Rakitzer = equivalent quality to Rein Hemp, Rhine Hemp

  MRC =  MC = Mohilow Russian Czukken hemp

  MRD = Marienburg Risten Dreibandt, Marienburg Bundle Threeband.

  NB = Notabene is another name for Paternoster

  NC = Newstadt Crown from Memel

  NP = Paternoster is also Badstuben Cut (Sent to Portugal)

  O = OTБOPHЬII (OTBORNI) is Select grade

  OC = Oberland Crown from Tilsit

  OD = Ordinary Driebandt, Threeband.

  OH = OUTSHOT is short second sort hemp. 

  P = PICKED,  Puik (Pink)

  PD = Puik Driebandt, Picked Threeband,   pink threeband.

  PH = Puik Heide, PIicked Tow flax

  PH = PASS HEMP .. usually from Lithuania or Samogitia.

  PHD = Puik Hoff's Driebandt, Picked Threeband. (French) Pink Threeband from Livonia.

  PK. Pass Krown (flax) is very short but clean and  free of woody particles.

  PK = Picked Krown (Pink Kron) flax.

  PLD = Puik Livonian Dreibandt, Picked Linlandischan Threeband  ..  Pink Livonian Dreibandt from Livonia.

  PSD = Puik Slansky Driebandt, Picked Slanitz Threeband,  pink Slansky threeband

  PW = Puik Wrack, Picked Brack, Pink Wrack flax

  PZ (ПЗ) is possibly ПEH ЗAБPAKЪ lowest quality hemp codilla.

  R (chista = clean) from Hemp seal of 1733

  R = Risten, bundles

  R = Rakitzer

  R = Risten, Bundle.

  RC = MRC = Mohilow Russian Czukken hemp

  RG = Rakitzer Geschnitten, lowest grade of Crown Cut Rakitzer.

  RH (MR) Rein (Rhine) Hemp is the longest best hemp, oily, strong and free of

    Codilla and woody particles .. sometimes listed as MR = Marienburg Rakitzer

  RSC = Russian Slanitz Crown from Memel

  S. Select is soft, silk-like flax in 3 grades

  S. Spinning grade

  S. Superior grade

  S = Sanft, Sweet, Superior

  SD = Slansky Driebandt, Slanitz Threeband. (

  SFHD = Superior Fine Hoff's Threeband.

  SH = Slansky Heide, Slanitz Tow

  SPK = Superior Picked Krown

  TR = Thiesenhausen Rakitzer, a type of High Quality Lithuanian flax grown on the estate of Count Thiesenhausen was of long harle, strong, even, clean, white and soft.

  W = Weiss, White .. is made up in bundles of 12, 9 and 6 heads called bobbins.

  W = Wrack (Brack) Bracked flax

  WC = Wilna Crown from Memel

  WFPHD White Fine Picked, Yellow (Hoff) Threeband flax

  WFPK White Fine Picked Crown flax

  WS = Wellish Slanitz or Wiasma Slanitz

  XHDX = Extra Hoff's Threeband flax

  XRX = Extra Rakitzer flax

  ZABR, ZABRACK, (ЗAБP, ЗAБPAKЪ) lowest quality hemp

  ZK = Zinc Crown (Zins Kron) flax



Ports, Regions and Towns

   The flax and hemp were cultivated in the Russian provinces of Archangel, Courland, Estonia, Kostroma, Livonia, Novgorod, Pskov, Smolensk, Tver, Vyatka, Vitebsk, Vologda and Yaroslav or Jaroslav.  (The following names amongst others are given to the fibre: - Archangel, Bajetsky, Courish, Dorpat, Drogobusher, Dunaberg, Fabrichnoi, Fellin, Gjatsk, Glazoff, Griazourtz, Iwashkower, Jaransk, Janowitz, Jaropol, Jaroslav, Kama, Kashin, Konigsberg, Kostroma, Kotelnitch, Kowns, Krasnoholm, Kurland (Courland), Latischki, Livonian Crowns, Malmuish, Marienberg, Mochenetz, Mologin, Newel, Nikolsky, Nolinsk, Novgorod, Opotchka, Ostroff, Ostrow, Otbornoy, Ouglitch, Pernau, Pskoff, Revel, Riga, Rjeff, St Petersburg, Seretz, Slanitz, Slobodskoi, Smolensk, Sytcheffka, Taroslav, Tchesna, Totma, Twer, Ustjuga, Viatka, Vishni, Vologda, Werro, Wiasma, Witebsk. These names indicate the particular district in which the flax has been grown, but it is more general to group the material into classes such as Livonian Crowns, Rija Crowns, Hoffs, Wracks, Drieband, Zins, Ristens, Pernau, Archangel, &c.).

  The bulk of the material was exported through the Baltic ports of Riga and St Petersburg (including Cronstadt) and from Konigsberg, Libau, Memel, Narva, Pernau, Revel, Tilsit, Windau,  and from Archangel on the White Sea when it wasn't frozen up..



  ARCHANGEL .. all the Archangel flax is dew-retted. The flax plants used at Archangel  are grown at Vologda, Viatka, Yaroslav, Kostroma, Novgorod.


  LIEBAU in Latvia,  the modern Liepaja, is one of two major ice-free ports (with Ventspils) in Kurzeme, the westernmost  region of Latvia. Courland, as it once was, was named after the Curi, a seafaring people, who lived here before the  German knights arrived. Courland became a duchy under Polish sovereignty after the breakup of Livonia (1562) as a result of the Livonian wars between Sweden and Russia. It belonged then to Gotthard Kettlers, the last Grand Master of the Teutonic Order and flourished in the next century under Jekabs Kettlers.


   MEMEL, (Klaiped) Lithuania. The 17th century saw turbulent times in Memel with the city destroyed by the Swedes in 1678. Indeed, the city was so used to attack that until the 1600s, brick or stone houses were forbidden in case they provided refuge for attacking forces.


   NARVA, Estonia. When German Balts turned to its old adversaries, the Russians, to fight the Swedes, Peter the Great obliged. In 1700, 35000 Russian soldiers set out for the  Swedish garrison at Narva. Charles XII, aged 19, came to its relief with 8000 men and, in a snowstorm, decimated the Russians capturing every artillery piece. Rejecting advisers' calls to press on to Moscow he moved to other fronts. Peter entrusted a second attack on Narva in 1704 to a Scot, Ogilvie. He overwhelmed the garrison, decided no prisoners would be taken and began an indiscriminate slaughter so when Peter arrived, it is said he stopped the massacre by slaying his own attackers with his sword. It was not pure humanity, he wanted Swedish prisoners for building work. The Peace negotiations of Nystad in 1721 gave the Swedish possessions in the Baltic, including Estonia, to Russia and the German merchants carried on as before.

   PERNAU, Pärnu, Estonia. The Livonian bishop, Henricus, first conferred town status on Pernau in 1251 although there had been settlement here from the earliest times. The "new" town  of Pernau was also given town status in 1265 and the two continued separately on either side of the river until they were united under the inter-war Estonian government in 1920.   From the 16th century it was exporting timber, and later, flax to the Angus ports.

    Pernau flax is Livonian and Fellin sorts, the latter being the best.. also from Estonia.

Pernau inhabitants in 1820

   REVEL .. flax shipped from Revel is mainly grown in Estonia.






  VELIKO-SELO-SKOI (VELIKOSELSKOI) BEЛИKOCEЛCKOИ means Veliko Village region .. high quality flax from the Veliko Village region in Yaroslavl Province. Most of the flax produced in Yaroslavl Province  was kept in Russia for the production of Yaroslavl Linen.


 VOLOGDA (BOЛOГДA) a city and region found on the seals of  HILLS & WHISHAW. (ХИЛЛCЪ И BИШAУ) is KHILLS & VISHAU  = HILLS & WHISHAW COMPANY who were established in Archangel in 1842 by William Whishaw.   Eventually most of the trade diverted to St Petersburg and the Baltic ports which was less effected by  the severe Russian winters.  Dew-retted flax from Vologda was of very high quality .. grown on the banks of the rivers Viledga (Spolvychegodsh  region) and Sukhona (Ustyug region).

  Classen's: No1 and Classen's: No2 Tow were shipped to Dundee in 1857 from Vologda.

  WINDAU in German but the Russian name from the time of the Russian Empire was ВУНДАЕА or ВУНДАЙ although  ВЕНТСПИЛС, a transliteration of VENTSPILS has been used since World War II. Some other names for the city include Livonian VANTA and Polish WINDAVA.


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The History of the Cyrillic Alphabet

Learn_RussianThe Cyrillic alphabet owes its name to the 9th century Byzantine missionary St. Cyril, who, along with his brother, Methodius, created the first Slavic alphabet—the Glagolithic—in order to translate Greek religious text to Slavic. It is on the basis of this alphabet that the Cyrillic alphabet was developed in the First Bulgarian Empire during the 10th century AD by the followers of the brothers, who were beatified as saints.  Based on the Greek ceremonial script, the original Cyrillic alphabet included the 24 letters of the Greek alphabet and 19 letters for sounds specific to the Slavic language. The Cyrillic alphabet has gone through many reforms in both Russia and other countries. In Russia, the first reformer of the Cyrillic was printer and publisher Ivan Fyodorov. He eliminated the letters Е and С and many forms of the letter О. Most reforms saw the number of letters decrease and the simplicity of their inscription increase. But the reverse has also happened: at the end of 18th century the Russian writer and historian Nikolay Karamzin suggested to introduce the letter Ё. Letters Э and Й were officially added to the alphabet in 18th century.   The Cyrillic alphabet achieved its current form in 1708 during the reign of Peter the Great. He introduced lower case characters (before all letters were written with capital letters) and mandated the use of westernized letter forms, making the modern Cyrillic similar to the modern Latin font.  The very existence of the Cyrillic alphabet in Russia was once under threat. In 1919 there was an idea to replace it with the Latin one and bring it into harmony with the alphabet used in Western countries. That could have made the process of learning Russian much easier for some, but this was not to be and we can still enjoy the masterpieces of Russian literature in their original script.  Today Cyrillic is the third official script of the European Union, following the Latin and Greek scripts. It is used in over 50 different languages, especially those of Slavic origin, mainly in Russia, Central Asia, and Eastern Europe. In Russia the Old Slavic language, which uses the Cyrillic alphabet has been historically used for religious services, and is sometimes used for these purposes today. The modern Russian alphabet differs from its forefather dramatically, and only experts will be able to tell how the letters of the original Cyrillic alphabet looked like and were read in texts using it.      Courtesy of RT.News



Relative Activity at the Mills according to Seal Dates 1776 -1838

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Bentham Mills

                                                                                    Aked's High Mill                              


                                                                                  Little Patrick Mill                                

West House Mill

          Knaresborough                        Cumbria                                                                          
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