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NOVY URENGOI, legends from a Khanty people

Резникова Наталья Николаевна,
учитель английского языка первой категории
г. Новый Уренгой, ЯНАО

The city Novy Urengoi is situated in the north of the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Area of Tyumen region on the left bank of the river Pur on the lands of “Gold boiling Mangazeya”. This is the name given in 16th and 17th centuries to a big settlement traditionally inhabited by Siberian Nenets. Today Novy Urengoi is one of the most developed industrial cities of Nothern Siberia. What is Novy Urengoi? There are some versions of the meaning of the word Urengoi. One of the legends comes from a Khanty people. Once Daughter of Sun came down on the hill, turned into a cat and ran under ground cutting it with its tail. Now the Pur river is flowing there. The place she put her feet on was named Urengoi-Daughter of Sun.
According to another version the word “urengoi” appeared in the history of the country at the end of forties when Beria’s “labour army” started building the rail road there. At present south to the city one can see the traces of former activities- live evidence of that time- sleepers embankments, rails, deserted camps and graves. Because of them the word “urengoi” was interpreted as “god forsaken place, wretched hole”.
In Nenets language that has several dialects “urengoi” is translated differently, sometimes with contrary meanings “a sandy hill in tundra”, “a bald hill”, “a hill covered with yellow grass” as well as “an area flooded by water from melted snow”. “The latter statement is confirmed by Nature: geologists’ settlement called Urengoi or “Old Urengoi” on the right bank of the Pur river is flooded by high water every July.


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