There is no place like home (My Bashkortostan)
Ученица 9 Б класса
МАОУ «Гимназия № 3
им. Джалиля Киекбаева»
Our region is called a land of unseen natural beauty. It is a land of high mountains and beautiful rivers and lakes, inexhaustible mineral recourses such as gold, silver and some precious stones. There are large pieces of virgin land. The Bashkirs are known to have lived in the Urals since ancient times. That is why most of places of interest have Bashkir names. The world “Ural” is believed to have originated from the combination of the words “Ur” (a hill) and “Al” (shortened from “Altyn”) (gold). This name might have been inherited from Bashkirs for the rich variety of mineral resources.
There is a Bashkir fairy tale about a giant who carried a belt with deep pockets, all his precious things being kept in the pockets. The belt was very big. One day the giant stretched the belt and it lay across the whole land – from the cold Kara Sea in the north to the sand shores of the Caspian Sea in the south. In this way the Ural Mountains were formed. “Ural” means a belt in Bashkir. They are 250 km long, their width differing in some places. In some places the mountains are 40 km wide; in some places they are 150 or more km wide. Bashkir tribes lived in the south of the Urals in the first millennium. At the time they practiced cattle-breeding, hunting, fishing as well as growing bread wheat, ore-mining and melting metals.
Starting from the second half of the 16th century, Bashkiria's territory began taking shape as a part of the Russian state. The fortress of Ufa was soon built in 1574. Nowadays it is the capital of Bashkortostan. After becoming a part of the Russian state, many positive aspects of life were adopted from Russians. Bashkirs followed the example of Russians and practiced more arable farming.
The Bashkirs have always been good warriors, workers and holiday-makers. Sabantui is a popular state holiday that is closely associated with hard work. The wheat having been planted, people started celebrating.
The Bashkirs are known not only for their customs and traditions but their dances. It took centuries for the national dances to form. They are a part and parcel of the people’s life and their character, men’s dances reflecting bravery, women’s dances reflecting labour.
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