Last week 750 Russians landed in this island, and yesterday 1700 more made their appearance. They are in general stout men, of a sallow complexion, and have very small eyes. Though most of them have plenty of dollars, they purchase the cheapest and coarsest food, to which they seem to give the preference. Herrings, sardines, salted codfish, salmon, they eat raw with the greatest avidity. Soap is one of their dainty dishes, and candles they have no objection to - of brandy they drink copious draughts. If we may judge from the short time they have been with us, they are under the strictest discipline, and nothing can exceed the regularity of their conduct. Not one of them is seen in the streets after sun-set. Subordination is carried so far among them, that no soldier ever asks the slightest favour of his officer, even in the open streets, without putting one knee to the ground. We have about 100 of their cavalry, all composed of Cossacks, who are very tall, formidable looking men, armed with long pikes, their legs cased in enormous boots; for their uniform they wear a long loose blue great coat, and blue pantaloons, the former compressed round their waist by a leathern girdle, from which depend a broad sabre and a brace of pistols. Their horses are small and very poor, perhaps from their long continuance in transports.
Times (London) 10/12/1799