Yakuts are a Turkic
Turkic peoples
The Turkic peoples are peoples residing in northern, central and western Asia, southern Siberia and northwestern China and parts of eastern Europe. They speak languages belonging to the Turkic language family. They share, to varying degrees, certain cultural traits and historical backgrounds...

 people associated with the Sakha (Yakutia) Republic.

The Yakut or Sakha language
Sakha language
Sakha, or Yakut, is a Turkic language with around 360,000 native speakers spoken in the Sakha Republic in the Russian Federation by the Sakha or Yakuts.Sakha is an agglutinative language, and it employs vowel harmony.-Classification:...

 belongs to the Northern branch of the Turkic family of languages
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

There are about 444,000 ethnic Yakuts (Russian census, 2002) mainly in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) in the Russian Federation, with some extending to the Amur
Amur Oblast
Amur Oblast is a federal subject of Russia , situated about east of Moscow on the banks of the Amur and Zeya Rivers. It shares its border with the Sakha Republic in the north, Khabarovsk Krai and the Jewish Autonomous Oblast in the east, People's Republic of China in the south, and Zabaykalsky...

, Magadan
Magadan is a port town on the Sea of Okhotsk and gateway to the Kolyma region. It is the administrative center of Magadan Oblast , in the Russian Far East. Founded in 1929 on the site of an earlier settlement from the 1920s, it was granted the status of town in 1939...

, Sakhalin
Sakhalin or Saghalien, is a large island in the North Pacific, lying between 45°50' and 54°24' N.It is part of Russia, and is Russia's largest island, and is administered as part of Sakhalin Oblast...

 regions, and the Taymyr
Taymyr Autonomous Okrug
Taymyr Dolgano-Nenets Autonomous Okrug , or Taymyria, was a federal subject of Russia , the northernmost in mainland Russia . It is named after the Taymyr Peninsula...

 and Evenki
The Evenks are a Tungusic people of Northern Asia. In Russia, the Evenks are recognized as one of the Indigenous peoples of the Russian North, with a population of 35,527...

 Autonomous Districts.
Their share of the population of Yakutia lowered during Soviet rule due to forced immigration, and other relocation policies, but has slightly increased since.

The Yakuts are divided into two basic groups based on geography and economics. Yakuts in the north are historically semi-nomadic hunters, fishermen, reindeer breeders, while southern Yakuts engage in animal husbandry focusing on horses and cattle.


Yakuts originally lived around Olkhon
Olkhon is the third-largest lake-bound island in the world. It is by far the largest island in Lake Baikal in eastern Siberia, with an area of . Structurally, it acts as the southwestern margin of Academician Ridge....

 and the region of Lake Baikal
Lake Baikal
Lake Baikal is the world's oldest at 30 million years old and deepest lake with an average depth of 744.4 metres.Located in the south of the Russian region of Siberia, between Irkutsk Oblast to the northwest and the Buryat Republic to the southeast, it is the most voluminous freshwater lake in the...

. But beginning in the 13th century they migrated to the basins of the Middle Lena
Lena River
The Lena is the easternmost of the three great Siberian rivers that flow into the Arctic Ocean . It is the 11th longest river in the world and has the 9th largest watershed...

, the Aldan
Aldan River
The Aldan River is the second-longest tributary of the Lena River in the Sakha Republic in eastern Siberia. The river is 2,273 km long, of which around 1,600 km is navigable. It was part of the River Route to Okhotsk...

 and Vilyuy
The Vilyuy River is river of the Central Siberian Plateau, longest tributary of the Lena River.At a length of approximately 2,650 km long, it is mostly within the Sakha Republic...

 rivers under the pressure of the rising Mongols, where they mixed with other northern indigenous peoples of Russia such as the Evens
The Evens or Eveny are a people in Siberia and the Russian Far East. They live in some of the regions of the Magadan Oblast and Kamchatka Krai and northern parts of Sakha east of the Lena River. According to the 2002 census, there were 19,071 Evens in Russia...

 and Evenks
The Evenks are a Tungusic people of Northern Asia. In Russia, the Evenks are recognized as one of the Indigenous peoples of the Russian North, with a population of 35,527...


The northern Yakuts were largely hunters, fishermen and reindeer
The reindeer , also known as the caribou in North America, is a deer from the Arctic and Subarctic, including both resident and migratory populations. While overall widespread and numerous, some of its subspecies are rare and one has already gone extinct.Reindeer vary considerably in color and size...

 herders, while the southern Yakut raised cattle and horses.

In the 1620s Russians
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

 began to move into their territory and annexed it, imposed a fur tax, and managed to suppress several Yakut rebellions between 1634 and 1642.

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 Russians, responded with a reign of terror: native settlements were torched and hundreds of people were tortured and killed. The Yakut population alone is estimated to have fallen as a result by 70 percent between 1642 and 1682.
The discovery of gold
Gold is a chemical element with the symbol Au and an atomic number of 79. Gold is a dense, soft, shiny, malleable and ductile metal. Pure gold has a bright yellow color and luster traditionally considered attractive, which it maintains without oxidizing in air or water. Chemically, gold is a...

 and, later, the building of the Trans-Siberian Railway
Trans-Siberian Railway
The Trans-Siberian Railway is a network of railways connecting Moscow with the Russian Far East and the Sea of Japan. It is the longest railway in the world...

, brought ever-increasing numbers of Russians into the region. By the 1820s almost all the Yakuts had been 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
Yakut Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic
The Yakut Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was an autonomous republic of the Russian SFSR within the Soviet Union.It was created on April 27, 1922, during the Yakut Revolt. It is now Sakha Republic of Russia. Yakut ASSR is known for its rich oil deposits, and refineries...

. There was a uprising in Yakut, known as the Yakut Revolt
Yakut Revolt
The Yakut Revolt or the Yakut Expedition was the last episode of the Russian Civil War. The hostilities took place between September 1921 and June 1923 and were centred on the Ayano-Maysky District of the Russian Far East.A formidable rising flared up in this part of Yakutia in September 1921...

, led by Cornet
Cornet (military rank)
Cornet was originally the third and lowest grade of commissioned officer in a British cavalry troop, after captain and lieutenant. A cornet is a new and junior officer.- Traditional duties :The cornet carried the troop standard, also known as a "cornet"....

 Mikhail Korobeinikov
Mikhail Korobeinikov
Cornet Mikhail Yakovlevich Korobeinikov was one of the leaders of the Yakut Revolt....


In the late 1920s through the late 1930s, Yakut people were systematically persecuted, when Joseph Stalin
Joseph Stalin
Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin was the Premier of the Soviet Union from 6 May 1941 to 5 March 1953. He was among the Bolshevik revolutionaries who brought about the October Revolution and had held the position of first General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union's Central Committee...

 launched his ruthless collectivization campaign. The Soviet
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 regime established numerous forced labour camps (generally known as the GULAG
The Gulag was the government agency that administered the main Soviet forced labor camp systems. While the camps housed a wide range of convicts, from petty criminals to political prisoners, large numbers were convicted by simplified procedures, such as NKVD troikas and other instruments of...

 system) where hundreds of thousands from all over the Union were sent for imprisonment. Tens of thousands of Yakuts also disappeared there, and not until the late 1960s had the Yakut population recovered to pre-collectivization levels.


The cuisine of Sakha consists predominatly of traditional drink kumis
Kumis, also spelled kumiss or koumiss in English is a fermented dairy product traditionally made from mare's milk. The drink remains important to the peoples of the Central Asian steppes, of Turkic and Mongol origin: Bashkirs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, Yakuts, Mongols and Kalmyks...

, dairy products of mare and reindeer milk, sliced frozen salted fish (strogaanina), loaf meat dishes (oyogos), venison
Venison is the meat of a game animal, especially a deer but also other animals such as antelope, wild boar, etc.-Etymology:The word derives from the Latin vēnor...

, frozen fish, thick pancakes, and salamat - a millet porridge with butter and horse fat. Kourchah, a popular dessert, is made of mare
Female horses are called mares.Mare is the Latin word for "sea".The word may also refer to:-People:* Ahmed Marzooq, also known as Mare, a footballer and Secretary General of Maldives Olympic Committee* Mare Winningham, American actress and singer...

 milk or cream with various berries
The botanical definition of a berry is a fleshy fruit produced from a single ovary. Grapes are an example. The berry is the most common type of fleshy fruit in which the entire ovary wall ripens into an edible pericarp. They may have one or more carpels with a thin covering and fleshy interiors....

. Indigirka is a traditional fish salad. This cuisine is only used in Yakutia.

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.