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(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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a great and powerful kingdom, which reached its zenith
perhaps in the ninth century, when it had no fewer
than five capitals. During this period flourishing towns
seem also to have grown up in the south Ussuri country ;
in fact, the town of Nikolsk itself is said to have been
originally founded at this time. The numerous ruins
of small towns, roads, and other works which are still
found in the south Ussiiri country and in the district
of Ninguta, in Manchuria, near the frontier, are thought
to date, for the most part in any case, from the Bokhai
domination. But then this was destroyed by the Kidani
tribe, or the house of Liau (916-1125), and a period of
decline ensued. After that the Churcheni people be
came masters of these regions, and in 1125 the house
of Liau was succeeded by the house of Tsin or Gin
(1125-1237) ; "Tsin" means "the golden."
Then in the year 1237, this dynasty was destroyed
by the Mongols, and the Ussiiri country underwent
varying destinies of which wc know little, until the
southern part of the country appears to have been
entirely devastated during the ascendancy of Ninguta
at the beginning of the seventeenth century and the
campaigns connected therewith. Some of the people
were tåken prisoners, others killed, and the rest fled ;
the whole Ussuri district was laid waste. The old
flourishing towns fell into ruin and were gradually
overgrown with forest, and in that state the country
remained for 246 years, until the Russians took posses
sion of it in 1861. During this period an immigration
of Chinese took place, partly as settlers, partly as rovers ;
these were the so-called Manses, to whom wc shall refer
Captain Arseniev relates some interesting traditions
of the legendary Kuan-yun dominion in this country.
They remind one that there was once a time when the

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