Thursday, October 11, 2012


Yakuts originally lived around Olkhon and the region of Lake Baikal. But beginning in the 13th century they migrated to the basins of the Middle Lena, the Aldan and Vilyuy rivers under the pressure of the rising Mongols, where they mixed with other northern indigenous peoples of Russia such as the Evens and Evenks.
The northern Yakuts were largely hunters, fishermen and reindeer herders, while the southern Yakut raised cattle and horses.
In the 1620s Russia began to move into their territory and annexed it, imposed a fur tax, and managed to suppress several Yakut rebellions between 1634 and 1642.
A Yakute in his Winterdress, ca. before 1906
Russian brutality in collection of the pelt tax (yasak) sparked a rebellion among the Yakuts and also Tungusic-speaking tribes along the River Lena in 1642. The voivode Peter Golovin, leader of the Russian forces[citation needed], responded with a reign of terror: native settlements were torched and hundreds of people were tortured and killed[citation needed]. The Yakut population alone is estimated to have fallen as a result by 70 percent between 1642 and 1682.[9] The discovery of gold and, later, the building of the Trans-Siberian Railway, brought ever-increasing numbers of Russians into the region. By the 1820s almost all the Yakuts had been forcefully converted to the Russian Orthodox church although they retained, and still retain, a number of Shamanist practices.
In 1919 the new Soviet government named the area the Yakut Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic. There was an uprising in Yakut, known as the Yakut Revolt, led by Cornet Mikhail Korobeinikov.
In the late 1920s through the late 1930s, Yakut people were systematically persecuted,[citation needed] when Joseph Stalin launched his collectivization campaign. The Soviet Union's Gulag system of involuntary labor increased the Yakuts' mortality and not until the late 1960s would the Yakut population recovered to pre-collectivization levels.[10][unreliable source]
Currently, Yakuts form a large plurality of the total population within the vast Sakha Republic. According to the 2010 Russian census, there were a total of 466,492 Yakuts who resided within the Sakha Republic during that year. This represented 49.9% of the total population of the republic. In addition, the Yakuts have a higher fertility rate than the Russians and the other Slavic peoples, while the median age of the Yakut population is much lower than the Russians. This basically ensures that the Yakut population would continue to grow during the foreseeable future.

No comments:

Post a Comment