Wednesday, 20 June 2012

The Bear Mountain, Crimea, Ukraine

We are having a mini summer here in England today :) It was warm enough to go out in a t-shirt, and I was sweating even then! A perfect excuse for some ice crea, then, I say! :D I do wish I could go on a beach on a day like this but it's not like there are any in the middle of England :P Oh well, at least I can see beaches and the sea on postcards, like this one I once received in a swap with dear Katya.



On this postcard you can see the Bear Mountain in Partenit, a seaside townlet in the southern part of Crimea, Ukraine. The name has its origins in the Greek “Parthenon.” Lying just east of the Bear Mountain, Partenit is on a fairly flat coastal plot of land, although the elevation quickly rises the further away one goes from the sea. Much of the architecture of the city is in the Soviet realist style. The current permanent-resident population is largely Russian Ukrainian, with a significant influx of Tatars and Armenians. Crimea, or the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, is a sub-national unit, an autonomous republic, of Ukraine. It is located on the northern coast of the Black Sea, occupying a peninsula of the same name. It was often referred to with the definite article, as the Crimea, until well into the 20th century.

Crimea is now an autonomous parliamentary republic which is governed by the Constitution of Crimea in accordance with the laws of Ukraine. The capital and administrative seat of the republic's government is the city of Simferopol, located in the center of the peninsula. Crimea's area is 26,200 square kilometres and its population was 1,973,185 as of 2007.

Crimean Tatars, an ethnic minority who now make up about 13% of the population, formed in Crimea in the late Middle Ages, after the Crimean Khanate had come into existence. The Crimean Tatars were forcibly expelled to Central Asia by Joseph Stalin's government. After the fall of the Soviet Union, some Crimean Tatars began to return to the region. However, a majority of the population consists of Russians, and the Russian language has official status in the autonomous republic.

4 comments:

Rob said...

Do you know the legend of the "Bear Mountain"? The mountain looks like a bear lying on his belly with his snout in the Black Sea? Legend has it that a large bear chief turned to stone from sadness after losing the little girl he had rescued from a shipwreck to a handsome young suitor who took her away on a little sailboat. At first he was so angry he put his mouth in the water to drink up all the sea to bring her back. When they were drawn back to the bears' kingdom by the sea, the little girl, now a young woman, cried and cried and pleaded with the bear chief. He loved her like a daughter and let her go because he knew she and the young man were in love. But he died of sadness, his body turned into the stone mountain and his fir into the thick forest.

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