All posts by Traveling Rockhopper

Russia – Religion

Russia

Based on all characteristic churches seen in Russia, it’s kind of natural to say, that Russia in an Orthodox country. However, it’s a bit misleading. It’s true, that the Orthodox is the main religion in Russia. But it’s important to remember, that during the Soviet Union period, religions were eliminated and replaced with atheism. So these days, there are also many atheists in Russia, as well as smaller number of other believers.

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Russia – Alaska

Caucasus Mountains, Russia

Alaska used to belong to Russia until August 1867, when it was sold to the United States of America. The price was about two cents an acre, what makes 7.2 million USD.
Many US-citizens were unhappy with this transaction, however after the discovery of gold and oil in Alaska, the opinion changed.

p.s. Today’s picture shows the Caucasus Mountains, not Alaska.

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Russia – Ballet

“Swan Lake”, Saint Petersburg, Russia

Ballet is the best known “Russian” dance.
I’ll risk the statement, that “Swan Lake” is the most known ballet in the world.
“Swan Lake” was composed by Russian Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.

What’s interesting, Peter the Great influenced the way Russian ballet looks!

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Russia – Soviet Union (USSR)

Russia

The Soviet Union (the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, USSR) existed (only?) for 69 years (1922-1991).
However, it was so intensive (and painful for many) period that it’s easy to have the impression it lasted much much longer.

I was planning to write a bit about the Soviet Union, but so many many (!!!) things happened during these 69 years, that I’m not able to make it short. There were lots of negative, horrible events, but there were also positive ones. And when you ask random 100 people from all countries that used to be part of the Soviet Union, plus from e.g., Poland or Germany, you get so many different stories that it’s just not possible to make it short.
So, I’ll leave it without a comment…

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Russia – Reign

Caucasus Mountains, Russia

From the history lessons, I well remember 3 names of Russian reigns:
-Ivan the Terrible (also known as Ivan IV Vasilyevich or Ivan the Fearsome)
-Peter the Great (Peter I or Peter Alexeyevich)
-Catherine II (Catherine the Great)

I believe, Peter I was the “greatest”, however all mentioned above changed “Russia” a lot, and made it much larger and stronger country (empire).

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Russia – Matryoshka Doll

Moscow, Russia

Matryoshka Doll is a set of wooden dolls of decreasing size placed one inside another.

Matryoshka seems to be a traditional Russian doll. However, it was invented at the end of 19th. century, and later presented in Paris, as an old Russian toy. Anyway, the idea was apparently quite clever, because these days, Matryoshka Doll is one of the symbols of Russia.

Matryoshka Dolls follow different themes. They may consist of “Russian women”, as well as represent characters of Soviet leaders; everything is possible. 😉

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Russia – Space Exploration

Caucasus Mountains, Russia

Russia (or the Soviet Union) has worked intensively on space exploration.

The most known dates:
-In 1957, the Soviet Union launched the world’s first satellite, Sputnik 1.
-Also in 1957, a dog Laika became one of the first animals in space (unfortunately died after a few hours from stress and overheating).
-And the most famous, in 1961, Yuri Gagarin became the first human to orbit the Earth.
-In 1966, Luna 9 was the first spacecraft that landed on the Moon (without people).
-In 1971 – the first space station (Salyut, and later Mir).

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Russia – Literature

Caucasus Mountains, Russia

“Anna Karenina”, “War and Peace” or “Crime and Punishment” – which one is the most known?
The first two were written by Lev Tolstoy, the 3rd one by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.
There are more famous Russian poets, e.g., Alexander Pushkin, but I’m not sure is his “Eugene Onegin” so well known worldwide.

What name comes to your mind, when you hear “Russian literature”?

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Russia – Science

Caucasus Mountains, Russia

Russia has always been famous for highly educated scientists.
I’m sure, everyone can give at least one name of Russian scientist (some of them may not always be considered as Russians, because they worked in other countries).
My (very subjective) list:
-Mendeleev
-Friedman
-Cherenkov
-Pavlov

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Russia – Cyrillic

Saint Petersburg, Russia

The Cyrillic script is a writing system used for various alphabets from Asia or Europe, e.g., Russian, Bulgarian, Mongolian, Ukrainian, etc.

Cyrillic was derived from the Greek script, and named after Saints Cyril and Methodius.

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