Omsk Region is located in the southern part of the West Siberian Plain midway along the Irtysh River. Its surface is a rolling plain with elevations of 100-140 m; ridged uplands (crests) are typical of the southern half of the region, while broad expanses of swamp are characteristic of the north. There are also many lake basins and sinks. The region has a moderately cold continental climate with long, severe winters and short summers. The average January temperature is about -20°C, and the average July temperature is +20°C.
The region extends 450-500 km from north to south, which leads to considerable variation in climatic conditions. Whereas the northern part of the region receives annual precipitation of 400-500 mm and is considered relatively moist, the arid southern part receives 300 mm or less. Other indicators change accordingly: average annual temperature varies from -1.1°C in the north to +0.4°C in the south; the frost-free period, from 90-100 days in the north to 115-120 days in the south, and the vegetation period, from 153 to 162 days.
All rivers belong to the basin of the Irtysh River, which flows through the region for more than 1000 km. The water content of the Irtysh at the city of Omsk based on average long-term discharge rates is equal to 865 m3/s. Its largest tributaries within the region are the Om and Tara rivers. The river network is sparse in the south and fairly dense in the north; the rivers are mainly snow-fed and have a pronounced spring runoff. Lakes in the south are mostly saline, while those in the north are generally fresh.
The predominant soils are black earths (chernozems), which cover 23.6% of the region (3.3 million hectares), followed by boggy (21%), alkali and brackish (15.6%), podzolic (13.3%), degraded alkali (7.3%), meadow (5.8%), gray forest (5.7%), and sod-podzolic soils (3.6%). Chernozems are the most developed soils.
Most of the region's vegetation is characteristic of the steppe and forest steppe zones, except for the north, which is in the taiga forest subzone. Forests cover more than one-quarter of Omsk Region, with the predominant species being pine, cedar, spruce, fir, birch, and aspen. In the southern part of the forest zone, mixed forest gives way to a belt of deciduous birch and aspen forests, which gradually changes southwards to the "parkland" of the forest steppe zone. The most valuable game and fur animals of the forest zone are squirrels, Siberian weasel, ermine, fox, roe deer, moose, wolf, and bear. The fox, varying hare, and steppe polecat are typical inhabitants of the forest steppe, while the red-cheeked ground squirrel lives on the steppe. Large numbers of ducks and geese are summer residents of the lakes and old riverbeds. Black grouse, gray partridge, and wood grouse are encountered in the forest steppe and forest zones.
In historic times, many different peoples migrated through the central Irtysh region where forest and steppe cultures mingled. The native Ugrian population (the ancestors of the modern Hungarians) assimilated with the Huns in the 4th and 5th centuries A.D. during the Great Migration. In the Middle Ages, the southern territory of Western Siberia was part of various nomad empires from the Western Turkic Kaganat to the Siberian Khanate and was the birthplace of the Siberian Tatar culture. The region was fairly densely populated during this period, as evidenced by hundreds of archeological and historical monuments, e.g., the burial mounds (kurgans) in Ust-Ishim, Tebenda, Aitkulovo, and other places.
The historical fortunes of many Eurasian peoples-Indo-Europeans,
Samodians, Finno-Ugrians, Mongolians, and Turks-were linked with the territory of present-day Omsk Region.
The southern forest steppe zone was suitable for farming and cattle herding; it was also a migration route for various tribes, and many trade routes passed through it. The north was attractive for its forests and furs. Mongols, Jungars, Kalmyks, Magyars, Mansis, Khantys, Kimaks, Teleuts, Shors, Uzbeks, Tajiks, Nogais, and Turkmen are only some of the nations who lived in the Irtysh region in the pre-Russian period.
The history of Russian settlement and development of the Irtysh region is connected above all with the legendary Cossack leader (hetman) Ermak Timofeevich (late 16th century), although Russian traders from the Pre-Urals had visited the Siberian Khanate as early as the 15th century. A raid by a small detachment of Ermak's Cossacks on the lands of Khan Kuchum in 1581 began the "Sunward" movement, a process of Russian colonization of Siberia unprecedented in its rapidity.
After defeating Kuchum, Ermak made a number of campaigns to southern Siberia between 1582 and 1585. During that time (1584-1585), he reached the boundaries of present-day Omsk Region and the towns of Tebenda and Tashetkana, whose residents voluntarily acknowledged his authority. The southernmost point reached by Ermak's forces was the small town of Ust-Shish. In 1594, a few years after Ermak's death at the mouth of the Bagai River, troops of Prince Andrei Eletsky founded the city of Tara, which became an outpost of Russian colonization of Western Siberia in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Settlement of the region by Russian farmers and Cossacks began in the north and during the 17th century did not go beyond the boundary between forest and steppe. There were frequent battles between Russians and nomads. Jungar forces besieged Tara in 1635, but the townspeople beat off the attack and saved the city.
In spring 1716, after returning from a campaign to the upper Irtysh, a Cossack detachment of Colonel Ivan Bukhgolts (an associate of Peter the Great and a participant in the battle of Poltava) founded Omsk fortress at the mouth of the Om River with the consent of Tobolsk Governor M. Gagarin. The fortress became the main outpost of the southern boundaries of the Russian Empire in the 18th century. During that time, Omsk functioned as a fortress and was the principal base of the Presno-Gorkovskaya line of outposts (named after the lakes) and a sturdy defender of the developing agricultural settlements against Jungar expansion. The Tara revolt of 1722-an antifeudal uprising of Cossacks and Old Believers brutally suppressed by a military expedition from Tobolsk-was an important event in the history of 18th-century Siberia.
About 2 100 000 people live in Omsk Region, 65% of them (about 1 400 000 people) in urban areas. The city of Omsk has a population of 1 080 000 people.
Ethnic composition: Russians, 81.0%; Germans, 6.0%; Ukrainians, 4.9%; Tatars, 2.2%. Employment by economic sector (as a % of total employment): industry, 25.5% (29.9% in the Russian Federation); agriculture 18.9% (12.8%); trade, 9.8% (9.1%); culture, 12.9% (13.6%); management, 2.0% (2.3%).
Mineral resources include clay, sand, and deposits of marl and peat in northern districts. Omsk Region has abundant water resources. There are more than 2000 rivers and streams with a total length of 8000 km and nearly 16 000 lakes, including 245 salt lakes. The largest lake is Lake Saltaim. Bogs cover more than 3.5 million hectares, or more than 25% of the region's total area.
As the region is located within the forest, forest steppe, and steppe zones, it has a variety of soils. Soil characteristics in the forest zone change from north to south. Gray forest, peat bog, and valley soils predominate in the northern part, but change to chernozems and meadow chernozems to the south. Chernozems are widespread in the steppe zone, but alkaline and saline soils are also encountered. More than 25% of the region's agricultural land is exposed to wind and water erosion.
Forests are one of the region's most important resources. The forest cover varies from mixed coniferous and softwood forests in the forest zone to forest steppe parkland consisting of birch and aspen groves between open expanses of meadow and steppe vegetation. An almost complete absence of trees and fewer varieties of herbaceous plants compared to the forest steppe characterize the steppe zone. More than 80 species of medicinal herbs grow in the region.
Omsk Region has a wide variety of wildlife, including more than 3000 invertebrate species, about 250 bird species, 20 fish species, and 5 amphibian species. Nature reserves and other protected natural sites occupy 7.5% of the region's total area.
The building material, power, oil refining, light, food, forest, woodworking, chemical, petrochemical, and engineering industries comprise Omsk Region's industrial base. Three of these sectors, namely, the oil refining, petrochemical, and engineering industries, together with agriculture, are important for both the region and for Russia. Most engineering industry production is oriented towards the defense complex. Companies in the engineering sector manufacture AN-74 airplanes; cultivator tractors; TV-7-117 aircraft engines; new communication facilities; medical, agricultural, and oil and gas equipment; compressor motors for refrigerators and freezing rooms; cryogenic, navigational, and hydraulic equipment; car tires; and many other products.
Some of the largest defense industry companies are the Polet Production Association (PO Polet), Transport Engineering Plant Production Association (PO Zavod transportnogo mashinostroeniya), OAO Siberian Cryogenic Equipment (Sibkriotekhnika), Omsk Baranov Engine-Building Production Association (OMP im. P.I. Baranova), Siberian Devices and Systems Production Association (PO Sibirskie pribory i sistemy), OAO Relero, Irtysh Production Association (PO Irtysh), OAO Omsk Hydraulic Drive (Omskgidroprivod), and OAO Omsk Assembly Plant (Omsky agregatny zavod). The latest developments of research institutes and design bureaus are used to manufacture equipment. Companies in various sectors, including the electrical and electronics industries, instrument making, aircraft manufacture, and agricultural and chemical engineering, are concentrated in Omsk. PO Omsknefteorgsintez (oil refining), Omsk Synthetic Rubber Plant (Omsky zavod sinteticheskogo kauchuka; chemicals and petrochemicals), Omsk Tire Plant Production Association (PO Omskshina), Omsk Plastic Factory (Omsky zavod plastmass), and various food industry companies are also located here. Omsk is one of Russia's five largest industrial centers in terms of output.
The region's natural resource potential and its location on transportation routes have influenced the development of the above-mentioned industries. Fertile soils and climatic conditions favorable for agriculture have led to region-wide development of many agricultural sectors and companies of the food industry, and to some extent light industry, that process raw agricultural products. The dairy, butter- and cheesemaking, meat, and meat canning sectors predominate the food industry. The presence of the Main Siberian rail line in the southern part of the region has influenced the formation of heavy industry, e.g., engineering, oil refining, and petrochemicals.
The forest and woodworking industries of Omsk Region are based on regional resources and requirements. Logging is mainly concentrated in the forest zone and does not exceed 2 million m3 of whole timber per year. Nearly 90% of woodworking industry production, consisting of lumber, chipboard, and furniture, is located in Omsk and its suburbs and the remainder in Tara, Ust-Ishim, Muromtsev, and Ekaterininsky.
The building material industry is oriented towards the production of reinforced concrete structures for industrial construction and large-panel house building, wall and roofing materials, and asphalt. Nearly 90% of the main facilities are located in Omsk. Construction of private housing using up-to-date technologies is going on under the organized regional programs "Housing" and "Your Own House," and comfortable housing is being built in cooperation with Canadian specialists under the joint Toronto-Omsk project.
Agriculture is one of Omsk Region's leading sectors. There are four distinct agricultural zones within the region: steppe, southern forest steppe, northern forest steppe, and northern. Nearly 7 million hectares of fertile land are available for use, including more than 4 million hectares for cropland, about 1 million hectares for hayfields, and slightly less than that for pasture; about 115 000 hectares of land are irrigated.
Grain growing is the main form of plant cultivation in Omsk Region. Most of the grain crop consists of hard and durum wheat. Grain yields are sufficient to meet the region's requirements, but vegetable supplies satisfy only 50% of demand.
The nearly 400 agricultural enterprises in the region include joint-stock companies, partnerships, and state and collective farms. In addition, there is a farming sector consisting of 7500 private farms that were set up in the course of agricultural reform. They hold 7% of the lands and 9% of the cropland in the region.
Farm owners in the region realized from historical experience that it was possible to grow sunflowers and other oilseed crops in Siberia, so there was no need to import them from southern European Russia. Today, between 70 000 and 75 000 hectares are sown in these crops, which is five to six times more than in the past few years. New, high-performance technologies for multipurpose utilization of milk and secondary raw materials are being introduced, and new industries and lines of business are developing. Beekeeping is widespread, and its products are sold in Omsk and other regions.
Livestock faming plays a leading role in the region's agriculture. Its products not only meet the requirements of the population of Omsk Region, but also provide a surplus for export to neighboring regions. Omsk Region has risen from sixth to second place in per capita milk production and from twelfth to third place in per capita beef and poultry production. However, maintaining these positions requires the production of 1-1.1 million tons of milk, 240 000-250 000 tons of beef and poultry, and 520-530 million eggs. The use of new preincubation technologies has allowed the Politeks Company to increase output of standard-weight chickens by an average of 3-5%, to great economic effect. Livestock farming also includes farm holdings having five or more cows and selling 4 to 5 tons of milk and 2 to 3 tons of meat live weight for processing. These farms have a number of unresolved problems, such as poor financing, technical assistance, and low market prices. In order to help these farms (which include collective farms), the regional administration intends to provide support, give low-interest loans and leases, and grant subsidies and compensation.
In accordance with the Charter of Omsk Region, the Governor is the region's highest official, who heads the Administration on the basis of undivided authority. Any citizen of the Russian Federation who is at least 30 years old may be elected to this post. Citizens of the Russian Federation residing in Omsk Region elect the Governor for a five-year term by secret ballot on the basis of universal, equal and direct suffrage.
In accordance with the Charter (Fundamental Law) of Omsk Region, the Legislative Assembly headed by the Chairman is the region's highest and only standing legislative (representative) body. The Legislative Assembly consists of 30 deputies elected for a five-year term by citizens of the Russian Federation residing in Omsk Region on the basis of universal, equal, and direct suffrage by secret ballot.
CULTURAL HISTORY OF OMSK
The culture of Omsk land began developing long before our time. The Huns, Avars, Ugrians, Turks, and Mongols who once lived here have all left their mark on it. Cossack culture began forming after the fall of the Siberian Khanate in the late 16th century.
As late as 1924, Omsk Province had only 6 reading rooms and 39 cultural clubs. Today, however, Omsk Region is Siberia's largest industrial and cultural center, with 1311 clubs and cultural facilities and nearly 1000 libraries. Since Omsk Region was formed in 1934, many new buildings have been constructed, including a theater for children and youth, a musical theater, a circus, a concert hall, the Irtysh sports and concert complex, and the Green Island (Zeleny ostrov) cultural and sports complex. Seven important cultural facilities have been opened, among them the Pushkin State Regional Science Library, Omsk Region's main general-purpose library.
People of many nationalities who are maintaining and developing their national traditions and cultures live side by side in the region. Omsk Region has more than 970 public political and national cultural organizations, the largest being the Russian cultural center, the Tatar-Bashkir cultural center, the Kazakh branch of the Kazakh-Tili international association, the Prosvita Ukrainian cultural center, the Soglasie and Wiedergeburt German cultural associations, the Shalom Jewish cultural association, the association of Russia Latvians, the Ingermanland Finnish cultural center, and the Luis Armenian cultural center.
Many talented people have lived in Omsk land. They were directors, artists, poets, writers, singers, and composers who created masterpieces of world culture. Among them were painter Mikhail Aleksandrovich Vrubel (1856-1910), poet Pavel Nikolaevich Vasilev (1910-1937), scientist and poet Petr Lyudvikovich Dravert (1879-1945), Soviet military commander and professor Dmitry Mikhailovich Karbyshev (1880-1945), and explorer of Central Asia Mikhail Vasilevich Pevtsov (1843-1902). A whole new group of modern talents has appeared in our time as well, from performing artists to painters and composers and many others. Folklore and dance ensembles, women's chamber choirs, and authors' talent clubs operate in the city of Omsk.
The region's 32 state museums have more than 240 000 unique exhibits, and 60 private museums have 100 000 exhibits. The Vrubel Regional Museum of Fine Arts in Omsk is one of the largest in Siberia and in Russia. Its collection includes more than 10 000 priceless works by Russian, Soviet, and foreign artists. Among its exhibits are a splendid collection of porcelain and paintings by Repin, Kramsky, Surikov, Levitan, Vasnetsov, Vrubel, and Rerikh. The Regional Historical Museum founded in 1878 presents a broad picture of the culture and daily lives of the people of Siberia from Russian settlers and Siberian Tatars to Kazakh cattle herders.
Omsk has long been recognized as the theater capital of Siberia, and many of its actors have performed on Russia's best stages. The region has seven professional state theaters: the Galerka Drama and Comedy Theater, an Academic Drama Theater, a Musical Theater, a Theater for Children and Youth, a Puppet Theater, the Fifth State Drama Theater and the L. Ermolaeva Studio Drama Theater. The Academic Drama Theater was founded in 1947 and since then has won a reputation as one of Russia's best theaters. The Puppet Theater was opened in 1936 and in 1992 was renamed the Harlequin (Arlekin) State Puppet, Actor and Mask Theater. The best known amateur group in Omsk is the Lyceum (Litsei) Municipal Theater.
Architecture embodies the ideas of famous architects and artists in stone. The streets, houses, and squares of Omsk Region, as well as books, will acquaint you with its rich history and culture from the time of Peter the Great and wooden fortified towns to modern buildings. Today, there are 1727 historical and architectural monuments in Omsk Region. One of them is the architectural ensemble known as Lyubinsky Avenue (Prospekt) located on Lenin Street (ul. Lenina) in Omsk. The buildings date from the late 19th and early 20th centuries and are unique for their size, style, and importance to the city's development. The large buildings of the Moscow Merchant Row (1904) and the Rossiya Hotel with its restaurant (1906) were built on the west side of Lyubinsky Prospekt. A movie theater, the trading houses of the Ovsyannikov brothers and A. Ganshin and Sons, and V. Morozov's store appeared later. Despite different architectural styles ranging from classicism to modern, the buildings form a single whole with a surprising unity and preserve the silhouette of old pre-Revolutionary Omsk. After Lyubinsky Prospekt was completed, the foreign press spoke of Omsk as the "Chicago of Siberia".
Nikolsky Cathedral (1840) is a unique 19th-century structure where Ermak's banner is preserved. The original wooden Tobolsk Gate on Tukhachevsky Embankment (nab. Tukhachevskogo) was rebuilt out of brick in 1792. One of the finest 18th-century architectural monuments in Omsk is the Lutheran Church built for foreign Protestants. Spassky Cathedral in the city of Tara is a monument of late 18th-century church architecture and the only religious building in Omsk constructed in the Siberian Baroque style. The Military Assembly building at Partisan Street (ul. Partizanskaya) 12 in Omsk is the last important building of the second Omsk fortress. One of the oldest remaining buildings in the fortress is the Guardhouse at ul. Partizanskaya 14; it is one the finest examples of the baroque style in Siberia.
Another unique architectural monument is a group of four buildings dating from the1910s at the intersection of ul. Lenina and ul. Libkhenkhta. These are the Trading House of the firm Vogau and Co. the building of the Salamander Society the building of the Tver Manufactory, and the building of the Triangle Association. Each individual building is unique in itself, and together they form an urban neoclassical architectural ensemble united by a single style that is rare in Siberia. The Palace of the Governor-General of Western Siberia (1862) at ul. Lenina 23 is called a palace because of its size and splendor.
Official portal of Omsk Region:
Лексико – грамматический тест
… do you study at?
a. when c. where
b. who d. why
Where … your college situated?
a. are c. am
b. is d. were
What does a laundress do?
a. studies law c. washes linen
b. mends boots and shoes d. practices medicine
На семинаре присутствовало 7 человек.
a) Seven were at people present the seminar.
b) People at were present seven the seminar.
c) Seven people were present at the seminar.
d) People were at seven present the seminar.
You listened to the radio yesterday, … you?
a. didn’t c. don’t
b. doesn’t d. hasn’t
N. E. Zhukovsky was born on the 17 of January, …
a. 1854 c. 1943
b. 1847 d. 1874
Do you get … early?
a. on c. up
b. off d. out
Zukovsky was offered to be a teacher of mathematics in …
a. 1854 c. 1943
b. 1847 d. 1872
Is your friend going to… his film?
a. see c. seen
b. saw d. to see
They … back next week.
a. came c. come
b. will come d. come
Great Britain is separated from the continent by …
a. the Pacific ocean c. the British Channel
b. the Irish Sea d. the English Channel
… million people speak English as their first language.
a. 400 c. 500
b. 450 d. 550
13. In … the Soviet Power was established in Omsk.
a. 1917 c. 1919
b. 1918 d. 1920
Has … in this group got a dictionary?
a. anything c. somebody
b. anybody d. nowhere
15. The Omsk region is located in the southern part of the … – Siberia plane.
a. West c. East