Wprawdzie pierwszym imperium „nad którym słońce nie zachodziło” było Imperium Habsburgów, ale zaraz znaleźli się zdolni tego naśladowcy. Sławna Rada Indii powstała w 1524, a już w 1532 powstał Akt spisany przez Tomasza Cromwella (nb. jego bratanek był pra-pradziadkiem Olivera…) w imieniu Henryka VIII „claiming that England was an Empire and the English crown was an Imperial Crown — Henry’s historians claimed that they could trace the lineage back to Brutus and the fall of Troy”.
Z kolei, w 1547, wraz z ogłoszeniem Iwana IV (pierwszym) carem Wszechrusi rozpoczęła się polityka imperialna Moskwy. Nic więc dziwnego, iż odkrycie w 1553 bezpośredniej „drogi północnej” miało tak wielkie znaczenie. Pisałem już o pierwszym poselstwie z Londynu:
„W 1557 ów Osip wrócił do Moskwy z listami od królowej angielskiej do cara Iwana IV, w towarzystwie sławnego Antoniego Jenkinsona (który w prezencie przywiózł carowi… lwa i lwicę!) oraz wielu wybitnych specjalistów. Takich jak lekarz Ralph Standish… Oprócz niego byli tam aptekarze oraz wybitni specjaliści wojskowi, oczywiście”.
Teraz trzeba mi rozwinąć ów wątek medyczno-aptekarski – wprawdzie pisałem już o inwazji i panowaniu szkockich medyków w Rosji, ale fundamenty tego oczywiście zbudowali Anglicy…
A wszystko przez to, iż trafiłem na bardzo zgrabny artykuł pt. IVAN THE TERRIBLE TO PETER THE GREAT: BRITISH FORMATIVE INFLUENCE ON RUSSIA’S MEDICO-APOTHECARY SYSTEM, który to fantastycznie opisuje:
„The specialists included Dr Ralph Standish, a Cambridge graduate, the apothecary Richard Elmes, and the Dutch apothecary Arend Claesen van Stellingswerfft. Standish, the first doctor in Russia, may have died there two years later, but Richard Elmes, the earliest English apothecary at the Russian court, stayed for twenty-seven years, until 1584. A further expansion occurred in 1567, when ships carrying over the apothecary Thomas Carver and Dr Reynolds, also brought two chests of apothecary wares… In the next year, at Ivan’s personal request, Queen Elizabeth sent him another doctor and another apothecary – the Belgian doctor Arnold Lindsay, famous in his day for his books on medicine and mathematics, and his brother Jacob…
It was at the Tsar’s request that Dr Robert Jacob and the apothecary James Frencham were engaged in 1581 together with several regimental surgeons. Frencham is generally regarded as the founder of the first Moscow Court Pharmacy – the progenitor of the Russian medico-apothecary system… It should be stressed that Russian medicine and pharmacy were virtually inseparable, both organizationally and therapeutically, throughout the one and a half centuries here under review. Consequently, emphasis wil be placed as much upon pharmacy, in its broadest aspects, as upon the medical profession.
The Moscow Court Pharmacy served the exclusive needs of the Tsar and his family. For fear of poisoning, all medicines had to be thoroughly tested and tasted before being administered. Dr Jacob and James Frencham worked closely together, but itis clear that Ivan had specially commissioned Frencham to establish this, Russia’s first chemist’s shop; having once organized the pharmacy, Frencham left Russia in 1584, returning seventeen years later.
The concept of the doctor-scholar-diplomatist-merchant is well exemplified by Robert Jacob. A distinguished doctor, the title of „Physician to the Household” was first applied to him by Queen Elizabeth, whom he treated for gynaecological troubles. He may not have advanced medical science in Russia directly, but his versatility and usefulness to Ivan and, later, Theodore, in other roles unquestionably benefited Anglo-Russian relations and favoured British influence upon Russian medicine. Ivan had earlier suggested a military alliance with England, but Elizabeth wanted all the trade she could get, without the alliance. It was therefore in England’s interest to cement cordial relations between the two countries, by whatever means. Dr Jacob, who had arrived in Russia with Frencham in 1581, was maintained by the Russia Company for several months until Ivan paid him a regular salary.”
Warto tu zauważyć, że śmierci Iwana „z przejedzenia” asystowało w 1584 aż trzech angielskich medyków (Jacob, Frencham i Elmes!), którzy natychmiast potem wrócili do Londynu. Ucieczka do Anglii stała się swoistą tradycją, która przybrała „najzabawniejszą” formę po zlikwidowaniu cara Piotra III.
„Two years later, he [tj. Jacob] went back to Russia, specially commended by Queen Elizabeth to treat the wife of the new Tsar Theodore. His arrival at Moscow in the company of the English ambassador, Sir Jerome Horsey, bearing rich gifts for the Tsar, for Boris Godunov the Protector, and for his sister the Tsarina, resulted in very desirable privileges for the Russia Company. (Jacob later greatly offended the Company by trading in wax on his own account, at a considerable loss to the Company.) He also provided his close friend John Dee (who trained Richard Chancellor and others in navigational techniques) with information about Siberia and the north-east teritories and was responsible for the extremely handsome invitation issued to Dee in 1586 from the Tsar and Boris Godunov to come to the Russian court, an offer which was declined. Far from being the exception, the English doctor’s multi-purpose role in Russia remained the accepted practice for many years to come.
When he became Tsar, Boris Godunov thought so highly of English doctors and apothecaries that, upon the recommendation of Sir Richard Lee, ambassador to Russia from July 1600 to April 1601, he took into his service Lee’s personal physician Dr Christopher Reitinger, born in Hungary but educated in England. Reitinger, as Godunov’s senior physician, received his letters testimonial and seal (which still survive) for curing him of a dangerous illness. During Lee’s mission, the Russians had requested James Frencham’s reappointment at the Court Pharmacy, and Gregory Mikulin, a special envoy, was sent to London to re-engage him. Frencham arrived in Moscow in November 1602 with a letter to Godunov from Queen Elizabeth recommending him as „a man very skylfull in his profession,” who, „for his honesty hath byn employed under us in a office of good reputation and trust.” ”