The Caspian expeditions of the Rus' were military raids undertaken by the Rus' between 864 and 1041 on the Caspian Sea shores, of what are nowadays Iran, Dagestan, and Azerbaijan. Initially, the Rus' appeared in Serkland in the 9th century traveling as merchants along the Volga trade route, selling furs, honey, and slaves. The first small-scale Viking raids took place in the late 9th and early 10th century. The Rus' undertook the first large-scale expedition in 913; having arrived on 500 ships, they pillaged in the Gorgan region, in the territory of present-day Iran, and more to the west, in Gilan and Mazandaran, taking slaves and goods. On their return, the northern raiders were attacked and defeated by the Khazars in the Volga Delta, and those who escaped were killed by the local tribes on the middle Volga.
During their next expedition in 943, the Rus' captured Bardha'a, the capital of Arran, in the modern-day Republic of Azerbaijan. The Rus' stayed there for several months, killing many inhabitants of the city and amassing substantial plunder. It was only an outbreak of dysentery among the Rus' that forced them to depart with their spoils. Sviatoslav, prince of Kiev, commanded the next attack, which destroyed the Khazar state in 965. Sviatoslav's campaign established the Rus's hold on the north-south trade routes, helping to alter the demographics of the region. Raids continued through the time period with the last Scandinavian attempt to reestablish the route to the Caspian Sea taking place in 1041 by Ingvar the Far-Travelled. (Full article...)
Operations in eastern Ukraine from 12 May to 15 June 1942
On 12 May 1942, Soviet forces under the command of Marshal Semyon Timoshenko launched an offensive against the German 6th Army from a salient established during the winter counter-offensive. After a promising start, the offensive was stopped on 15 May by massive airstrikes. Critical Soviet errors by several staff officers and by Joseph Stalin, who failed to accurately estimate the 6th Army's potential and overestimated their own newly raised forces, facilitated a German pincer attack on 17 May which cut off three Soviet field armies from the rest of the front by 22 May. Hemmed into a narrow area, the 250,000-strong Soviet force inside the pocket was exterminated from all sides by German armored, artillery and machine gun firepower as well as 7,700 tonnes of air-dropped bombs. After six days of encirclement, Soviet resistance ended, with the remaining troops being killed or surrendering. (Full article...)
Following the Mongol invasion of Central Asia and the subsequent collapse of the Khwarezmian Empire, a Mongol force under the command of generals Jebe and Subutai advanced into Iraq-i Ajam. Jebe requested permission from the Mongolian emperor, Genghis Khan, to continue his conquests for a few years before returning to the main army via the Caucasus. While waiting for Genghis Khan's reply, the duo set out on a raid in which they attacked the Kingdom of Georgia. Genghis Khan granted the duo permission to undertake their expedition, and after making their way through the Caucasus, they defeated a coalition of Caucasian tribes before defeating the Cumans. The Cuman Khan fled to the court of his son-in-law, Prince Mstislav the Bold of Halych, whom he convinced to help fight the Mongols. Mstislav the Bold formed an alliance of the Rus' princes including Mstislav III of Kiev. (Full article...)
The Vorontsov Palace: the northern entrance facade. The stone was mined locally as part of a conscious effort to blend the building with its mountainous surroundings.
The Vorontsov Palace (Ukrainian: Воронцовський палац; Russian: Воронцо́вский дворе́ц) or the Alupka Palace is a historic palace situated at the foot of the Crimean Mountains near the town of Alupka in Crimea. The Vorontsov Palace is one of the oldest and largest palaces in Crimea, and is one of the most popular tourist attractions on Crimea's southern coast.
Makhno was the namesake of the Makhnovshchina (loosely translated as "Makhno movement"), a predominantly peasant phenomenon that grew into a mass social movement. It was initially centered around Makhno's hometown Huliaipole but over the course of the Ukrainian Civil War came to exert a strong influence over large areas of southern Ukraine. Makhno and the majority of the movement's leadership were anarcho-communists and attempted to guide the movement along these ideological lines. Makhno was aggressively opposed to all factions that sought to impose their authority over southern Ukraine, battling in succession the forces of the Ukrainian People's Republic, Central Powers, White Army, Red Army, and other smaller forces led by various Ukrainian otamans. Makhno and his supporters attempted to reorganize social and economic life along anarchist lines, including the establishment of communes on former landed estates, the requisition and egalitarian redistribution of land to the peasants, and the organization of free elections to local soviets (councils) and regional congresses. However, the disruption of the civil war precluded a stable territorial base for any long-term social experiments. (Full article...)
The Volunteer Corps colors, or "Darnița Flag", inscribed with the text TRĂIASCĂ ROMÂNIA MARE ("Long live Greater Romania")
Kateryna Skarzhynska née von Reiser (Ukrainian: Катерина Миколаївна Скаржинська, 7 February 1852 O.S./19 February 1852 (N.S.) – 1932) was a Ukrainian noblewoman, philanthropist, and collector of folklore. She established the first private museum in Ukraine to house her collection of artifacts and was particularly known for her collection of pysanky, Easter eggs decorated with Ukrainian folk art. Born in Lubny to the von Reiser family, which had a long history of military service to the Russian Tsars, she was educated at home, studying in her parents' library and with select tutors. After her father died in 1859, together with her mother, brother, and maternal grandmother she moved to the Lodygyn/Lodigine family estates in the Tver province of the Russian Empire, near Moscow. There at the age of 14, von Reiser established a school for the former serfs of the estate and a public hospital.
In 1869, von Reiser became acquainted with Nikolai Georgievich Skarzhynsky, a Ukrainian nobleman and soldier. Through his circle of friends, she decided to continue her education and passed her gymnasium studies, entering the Bestuzhev Courses. They married in 1874 and later would have five children together. Five years later, he was transferred from St. Petersburg back to Ukraine. Though she did not finish her studies, Skarzhynska had developed an interest in culture and moving back to her father's estate, Kruglik, inspired her to begin collecting folk art and other artifacts. Consulting with ethnographers, archaeologists and historians, she financed archaeological excavations and amassed a large collection of items. Failing to interest local authorities in establishing a museum to house them, she created the first private museum in Ukraine in 1880. Hiring professional curators, Skarzhynska assisted in developing the collection until 1905. One of the curators, Sergiy Kulzhynskiy [uk], would become her partner, father of her youngest child, and her companion and caretaker in her old age. In 1906, she transferred her materials to the Museum of Natural History of Poltava Provincial Zemstvo. (Full article...)
Kievan Rus in the 11th century, with adjoining regions
The intervention was initially successful as Bolesław defeated Yaroslav's armies, and temporarily secured the throne for Sviatopolk. But when Bolesław withdrew himself and his army from Kiev, Sviatopolk was unable to retain his position, being defeated by Yaroslav in the following year. Chronicles of the expedition include legendary accounts as well as factual history and have been subject to varied interpretations. (Full article...)
Andriivskyi Descent (Ukrainian: Андріївський узвіз, Andriyivs’kyi uzviz, literally: Andrew's Descent) is a historic descent connecting Kyiv's Upper Town neighborhood and the historically commercial Podil neighborhood. The street, often advertised by tour guides and operators as the "Montmartre of Kyiv", is a major tourist attraction of the city. It is included in the list of national landmarks by the government resolution. In addition, the street is also part of the Kyiv city historic reserve "Ancient Kyiv", while the St.Andrew's Church belongs to the National historic reserve "Sophia of Kyiv".
The Polish architect Władysław Horodecki originally constructed the House with Chimaeras for use as his own upmarket apartment building during the period of 1901–1902. However, as the years went by, Horodecki eventually had to sell the building due to financial troubles, after which it changed ownership numerous times before finally being occupied by an official Communist Partypolyclinic until the early 2000s. When the building was vacated, its interior and exterior decor were fully reconstructed and restored according to Horodecki's original plans. (Full article...)
Khrushchev was born in 1894 in a village in western Russia. He was employed as a metal worker during his youth, and he was a political commissar during the Russian Civil War. Under the sponsorship of Lazar Kaganovich, he worked his way up the Soviet hierarchy. He supported Joseph Stalin's purges and approved thousands of arrests. In 1938, Stalin sent him to govern the Ukrainian SSR, and he continued the purges there. During what was known in the Soviet Union as the Great Patriotic War, Khrushchev was again a commissar, serving as an intermediary between Stalin and his generals. Khrushchev was present at the bloody defense of Stalingrad, a fact he took great pride in throughout his life. After the war, he returned to Ukraine before being recalled to Moscow as one of Stalin's close advisers. (Full article...)
Evdokia Reshetnik (Ukrainian: Євдокія Решетник; 1 March 1903 O.S./14 March 1903 (N. S.) – 22 October 1996) was a Ukrainian zoologist and ecologist. She was a specialist in the mole-rats and ground squirrels of Ukraine, and was the first scientist to describe the sandy blind mole-rat of southern Ukraine in 1939. She played a key role in keeping the National Museum of Natural History at the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine operable in the inter-war and immediate post-war periods, in spite of arrests by both the Gestapo and Soviet authorities. She was one of the people involved in hiding specimens of the museum to prevent them being taken by the Germans. She is known for arguing that ecology, species distribution, populations, utility, and variability, should be weighed before making determinations that labeled certain animals as pests and harmful to the environment. Though she was responsible for maintaining the historiography of scientific development in Ukraine, her own legacy was lost until the twenty-first century. (Full article...)
A map showing caesium-137 contamination in Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine (in curies per square kilometer) in 1996, ten years after the Chernobyl disaster struck the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. The disaster contaminated 162,160 square kilometres (62,610 sq mi) of land and is widely considered the worst nuclear power plant accident in history.
Kombat (Russian for 'battalion commander') is a black-and-white photograph by Soviet photographer Max Alpert. It depicts a Soviet military officer, armed with a TT pistol, raising his unit for an attack during World War II. This work is regarded as one of the most iconic Soviet World War II photographs, yet neither the date nor the subject is known with certainty. According to the most widely accepted version, it depicts junior politruk Aleksei Gordeyevich Yeryomenko, minutes before his death on 12 July 1942, in Voroshilovgrad Oblast, now part of Ukraine. The photograph is in the archives of RIA Novosti, a Russian state-owned news agency.
Mushrooms of Armillaria hinnulea, a species of honey fungus (or "pidpenky", from Ukrainian). Honey fungi are parasiticfungi that live on trees and woody shrubs. As a forest pathogen, it can be very destructive because unlike most parasites, it does not need to moderate its growth in order to avoid killing its host, since it will continue to thrive on the dead material. Honey fungi are long lived and form some of the largest living organisms in the world, including one that covers more than 3.4 sq mi (8.8 km2) and is thousands of years old. The mushrooms are edible, but can be easily confused with poisonousGalerina species, which can grow side-by-side with Armillaria.
The burning of the Trade Unions Building—used as the headquarters of the Euromaidan movement—during the 2014 Ukrainian revolution, following a failed attempt by the Ukrainian police to capture the building. After the fire, the damaged building was covered with large canvas screens on two sides with the words "Glory to Ukraine" printed on them in large letters.
The Royal Kurgan is a 4th century BC kurgan (burial barrow) located near present-day Kerch, Crimea. The mound is almost 20 metres high and its base perimeter is about 250 metres. It holds a burial chamber with a square floor plan which gradually merges into the circular shape of a corbelled dome ("false vault"). It is assumed that the Royal Kurgan was the final resting place of a ruler of the Bosporan Kingdom.
The ChS8 is an electric mainline passenger locomotive used in Russia and Ukraine. Built between 1983 and 1989, it was developed for pulling long passenger trains (28–32 carriages) at speeds of 100 kilometres per hour (60 mph) or faster. Since 2010 Russia has switched to more energy-efficient designs, such as the EP10 and EP20.
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