Article 1416

Title of the article

THE DEATH OF BRAVE-HEART YERMAK: METAMORPHOSES IN RUSSIAN AND TATAR TALES
OF THE 17th CENTURY 

Authors

Solodkin Yakov Grigoryevich, Doctor of historical sciences, professor, sub-department of Russian history, head of the Research laboratory for regional historical studies, Nizhnevartovsk State University (3b Mira street, Nizhnevartovsk, Russia), hist2@yandex.ru

Index UDK

93/99 

DOI

10.21685/2072-3024-2016-4-1

Abstract

Background. In recent years we have witnessed a remarkable increase in the research into the history of Asian Russia, the origin of which is nearly unanimouslyassociated with the renowned expedition by Yermak. A number of issues from its history have been subjects of debate for centuries. One of such debates is related to the circumstances in which the glorified ataman perished mostly due to the shortage of reliable sources. The aim of this paper is to establish the earliest versions of Yermak’s death in the form they are reflected in the narrative sources of both Russian and Tatar origin, along with their transformations up to the late 17th century.
Materials and methods. The study into the subject matter implies the most diversified use of sources, including the folklore materials which are, at least to some extent, linked to the opening decades of the Russian colonization of Siberia. The chronological method is an instrument to ascertain the succession of the origin and alterations of tales about Yermak’s death. The comparative historical method is used to expose the ways and forms in which the evidence on the expedition along the Irtysh River evolved since the Vagay battle in August 1584, the battle that turned fatal for the Cossack leader.
Results. The work has revealed a set of comparatively early evidence on Yermak’s death to prove that this evidence was folklorised under the literary tradition that had evolved in Tobolsk since 1620s. Transformational trends in the tales that portrayed details of the Cossack detachment leader’s death have been established.
Conclusions. The paper reveals transformational trends in the earliest versions of the death of the most spoken-of Cossack leader in Russian and Tatar sources of the 17th century. The set of more or less reliable evidence from these folklore tales has been identified.

Key words

Yermak’s death, River Vagay estuary, “A Short Description of the Siberian Land…”, Commemoration Book of Yermak’s Cossacks, Siberian chronicles and their written and folklore sources, Russian and Tatar tales of Yermak’s last battle

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Дата создания: 11.04.2017 16:54
Дата обновления: 11.04.2017 20:07