Siberia, 1584-1700

The KHANATE OF SIBIR, having split off the Khanate of the Golden Horde in the early 15th century, was conquered by a Cossack army lead by YERMAK in 1584. Sibir, a comparatively small khanate in western Siberia, was to give it's name to the entire mass of land between the Ural mountains and the Pacific Ocean. Yermak himself lead the exploration and reached the Ocean. Enterprising families such as the STROGANOVS, who had financed Yermak's expedition, were interested in opening the wide area to monopolize the FUR TRADE. Nizhni Novgorod was the starting point of expeditions into Siberia. A few fortified cities, such as Tobolsk, Tomsk and IRKUTSK were founded to control the major trade route.
Russian rule over the vast regions of Siberia did not change the lifestyle of it's inhabitants very much, as the Russians, because of the vast distance and the harsh climate, were only rarely seen in most areas, concentrated around a few fortified cities, and were interested mainly in purchasing fur.

Article : Siberia, from Catholic Encyclopedia, 1912 edition
History of Siberia, from baikalex.html
A Short History of Siberia, from Ruhr-Univ. Bochum
The Russian Discovery of Siberia, from Frontiers, timetable and historical maps
REFERENCE Russian Expansion and Fur Trade in : John Channon and Robert Hudson, The Penguin Historical Atlas of Russia, London : Penguin 1995, pp.38-39, 42-43

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted on January 11th 2002, last revised on November 4th 2004

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