The large nominal proportion of Buddhists is deceptive.
Of these, eleven volumes had by 1910 been edited for the Pali Text Society by various scholars, the Jatakas and two other treatises had appeared elsewhere, and two works (one a selection of lives of distinguished early Buddhists, and the other an ancient commentary), were still in MS.
In his relations with Moslems, Buddhists and even fetishists the Russian peasant looks rather to conduct than to creed, the latter being in his view simply a matter of nationality.
They were Buddhists, and it is probable that the Mahayana or northern form of Buddhism was due to an amalgamation of Gotama's doctrines with the ideas (largely Greek and Persian) which they brought with them.
These orders are of very ancient date, owing their establishment to the ancient Hindu rule, followed by the Buddhists, that each "twice-born" man should lead in the woods the life of an ascetic. The second class of Fakirs are simply disreputable beggars who wander round extorting, under the guise of religion, alms from the charitable and practising on the superstitions of the villagers.