October 26 in Russian history


Cossacks led by Yermak Timofeyevich capture the capital of the Siberian Khanate, town Qashliq (or Isker, or Sibir). The dating of this event is not clear. Some chronicles say it happened in 1581, some even talk about 1579.

In mid-16th century, the relations between Russia and the Siberian khans were very good. The khans, brothers Yadigar and Bekbulat, asked Russia for protection and recognized their vassalage to Muscovy. They agreed to pay tribute for this protection. The tribute payed in furs and sometimes in kettle was called yasak. This form of tribute was common in relations between Russia and the Siberian peoples.

The Siberian khanate was formed around 1495, when members of the Taibugid family, members of Borjigin clan, the clan of Genghis Khan, revolted against Ibak khan (Ibrahim), the khan of the Tyumen khanate, and killed him. Yadigar and Bekbulat belonged to the Taibugid family. In 1553, a descendent of Ibak khan, Kuchum, killed them to revenge for his grandfather's death and became the khan of the Siberian khanate. For some years, he continued to fight the resistance of many tribes and peoples living in the khanate. He continued to pay yasak till 1571. As soon as he suppressed the resistance, he broke the relations with Russia and began raiding the lands recently gained by Russia in the war with the Kazan khanate. There his soldiers entered the lands of the Stroganovs. This family possessed huge territories in Urals and their activities were extremely important later for the industrial development of this region.

What happened later is not known in details, but Stroganovs were clearly vexed by the attacks of Kuchum. Either they hired a group of Cossacks led by Yermak, or they simply provided them with food, weapons and equipment. Some even say that the Cossacks simply stole the equipment from the stores owned by Stroganovs. Anyway, the Cossacks, about 800 people on boats, departed to the east. After some battles, when Yermak totally defeated the armies of Kuchum, in October 1582 (?), the Cossacks captured the capital of the Siberian khanate, the city called Qashliq, or Isker, or Sibir.

Actually, it was the end of the Siberian khanate. Nevertheless, Kuchum survived and led his army to the woods. For some years, they continued to oppose Yermak and finally, on August 6 1585, they ambushed a Cossacks' detachment and killed Yermak Timofeyevich. The other Cossacks left Qashliq and Siberia. However, a year later Russians began an organized advancement to Siberia. New towns and fortresses were built, new troops were sent to protect these settlements and new settlers came. Russian tsar Feodor I invited Kuchum to come and live in Russia, but Kuchum continued to oppose Russians till his death in around 1605, when he was killed in Nogai Horde, trying to steal kettle from Nogais. His grandson, Arslan, was captured and became later the khan of the Qasim khanate, a small Tatar territory near Ryazan on river Oka, vassal of Russia.


The Central Committee of the Communist Party of the USSR and the Council of Minister of the USSR adopt a resolution on measures aimed at the intensification of fish production and sales. In canteens and restaurants Thursday was proclaimed "the fish day", when almost all dishes included seafood. Almost every ex-Soviet citizen shudders recalling these Thursdays.

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