They had cut the whole of the big meadow, which had, in the years of serf labor, taken thirty scythes two days to mow.
"As for your dislike of it, excuse my saying so, that’s simply our Russian sloth and old serf-owner’s ways, and I’m convinced that in you it’s a temporary error and will pass."
He despised the nobility, and believed the mass of the nobility to be secretly in favor of serfdom, and only concealing their views from cowardice.
It was not, perhaps, of importance in the days of serfdom, and it may not be of importance in England.
Where the land with serf-labor and good management gave a yield of nine to one, on the half-crop system it yields three to one.
The gentleman with the gray whiskers was obviously an inveterate adherent of serfdom and a devoted agriculturist, who had lived all his life in the country.
Now, by the abolition of serfdom we have been deprived of our authority; and so our husbandry, where it had been raised to a high level, is bound to sink to the most savage primitive condition.
The relic of barbarism, the primitive commune with each guarantee for all, will disappear of itself; serfdom has been abolished—there remains nothing but free labor, and its forms are fixed and ready made, and must be adopted.
Now, in our own day, we landowners in the serf times used various improvements in our husbandry: drying machines and thrashing machines, and carting manure and all the modern implements—all that we brought into use by our authority, and the peasants opposed it at first, and ended by imitating us.
An inveterate supporter of serfdom at heart, like all of them!" said Sviazhsky.
"I don’t believe it," Sviazhsky replied quite seriously; "all I see is that we don’t know how to cultivate the land, and that our system of agriculture in the serf days was by no means too high, but too low.
There are no more uses of "serf" in the book.
Show samples from other sources
"Yes, my squalid little serf," I said, and fluttered my hands in royal dispensation.
Gillian Flynn -- Gone Girl
Then came a cart, and behind that walked an old, bandy-legged domestic serf in a peaked cap and sheepskin coat.