Page 3484

3484 UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE MODERN WORLD.

there was war. Only the women made

wild conjectures as to whom it was against.

There was no thought of work. Horses

were groomed, uniforms donned, rifles

and sabres cleaned with enthusiastic vigor.

Soon the Government veterinary surgeon

took his stand before the chief building

and the work of examining the horses

began. Each man in turn brought up

his horse and put it through its paces.

The test was most strict, and any animal

showing the slightest defect was promptly

branded as useless. All day the work

continued, a crowd of women and children

watching the proceedings. At night the

red flag was pulled down and a red lamp

was hoisted in its place. In the evening

there was a great feast. A whole ox was

roasted, there was dancing among the

younger people, but owing to the new

regulations there was practically no vodka.

All through the night men came riding

into the village from the outlying districts.

"On the Sunday when the preparations

were almost complete the consecration

service was held. The whole village assembled before the little wooden church.

It was a stirring sight to see these great

warriors in their full battle array kneeling

before their Maker and solemnly asking

His aid. At the conclusion of the service

each man was blessed by the priest and

anointed with holy water. Then he led

his horse away and received the blessings

of his family.

"On the following day they set off on a

journey of thousands of miles. The women,

children, and old men watched them. Their

eyes gleamed with tears and their breasts

heaved. Then, when the last man had disappeared from view, they turned away,

walked to the fields, and took over the

labors which the men had left unfinished."

Less than a week after the Germans

began their assaults upon the forts of

Liege, the first Austrian army moved

across the frontier into Russian Poland.

Their first objectives were Krosnik and

Lublin, but the ultimate aim was probably

Warsaw. The Russian forces opposing

them were too inferior in numbers to make

a decided stand, but withdrew, making

what resistance they might, before the

invaders. This movement and that of

the Germans from the west was hailed

in Berlin and Vienna as a triumphant

march on Warsaw, but events soon showed

that Warsaw was not to fall at this time.

Meanwhile, the Russians themselves

had been gathering two great armies for

an invasion of eastern Galicia. The first of

these, under General Russky, was designed

to move directly against the second Austrian

army, while another, under General Brussilov, moved from the southeastward

nearer the Carpathians against the same

army's right wing. On the 14th of August, Russky's great army, preceded by vast

clouds of Cossacks, crossed the Galician border. The Austrians had already

been beaten in several skirmishes, and

Russky's forces pressed onward until,

about the day that the Germans in the

west were marching through Brussels,

he was drawing near the position of the

second Austrian army extending before

the fortress and town of Lemberg. The

advance of both the Russian armies through