The Buriat Shamanism and Buddhism in Agaton Giller’s Memoirs
(53rd Annual Meeting of the PIAC, St. Petersburg 2010)
At the 49th meeting of the PIAC in Berlin in 2006 I had a good occasion to present my report entitled “Polish Account on the Buriats in the Middle of the 19th Century. From Agaton Giller’s Memoirs”. There were presented the author’s observations on various domains of the private and social life of the people in question. In what follows I give as a supplement the same author’s additional remarks on the religious beliefs of the Buriats. They were published in Polish in 1867 and to modern researchers are rather difficult to access. It should be observed that Agaton Giller (1831-1870) was a Polish journalist, writer and politician struggling against the tsarist Russia. Thrown into prison, he was sentenced to a compulsory settlement in Western Siberia where, notwithstanding his miserable position, he was making his enthnological observations. At first he was forced to work in the Shilkinski Zavod in the vicinity of Nerchinsk, then, from 1858, he dwelled in Troitsko-Sewsk, in the neighbourhood of Kiakhta, and in Irkutsk (till 1860).