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For all, who are interested in the Orient

Восточная коллекция № 4, 2003 (15) The last issue of the year 2003 opens with a picture story about Altai, a mountain country in Siberia, which gave birth to many Oriental nations.

Siberian road

A selection of articles by scholars from Novosibirsk. Here, in the heart of Siberia, the school of Oriental studies has been formed rather recently, but the scholars from various fields have already co-operated in producing interesting studies of the Orient, its archaeology, history, ecology, ethnography, source materials, etc.

Alexander Poleschuk, the Editor-in-Chief, talked to Anatoly Derevyanko, Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, about the works by Novosibirsk scholars, and about the prospects of Oriental studies in Siberia.

Evgeny Matochkin. Faces of Distant Ancestors. A review of the works by aboriginal artists of Eastern Siberia. Cultures meet in their art, which combines European avant-garde and archaic motives, national cultural traditions and sharp vision of modernity.

Vladimir Kubarev. Altai’s Attraction. The author, an archaeologist, carried out dozens of expeditions in Altai and made quite a few important discoveries. This mountain country still keeps numerous secrets.

Yuly Khudyakov. Weapons of «Heavenly Iron». In early Middle Ages, the Yenisey Kyrgyz were famous as skilful armourers. The author presents weapons and armour of these ancient people, excavated by himself: a bow, a sword, a spear, a plate-mail, and a shield.

Elizaveta Malinina. In the Silence of Zen Garden. A Zen garden is a place where human mind is elevated above everyday problems, where everything reminds of all things exalted. The author visited several gardens in Japanese temples and monasteries, and saw something special in every one of them.

Sergey Komissarov. Yu, a Beauty of Stones. Jade in Oriental culture. Since times immemorial the people attached special meaning to this mineral. It was used not only as a decoration, but also as insignia and for ritual purposes. Elena Voytishek. Ghost Cards. The iroha cards were popular in old Japan and are still a popular kind of intellectual game. The author describes and briefly annotates 48 cards with ghost images, arranged according to sequence of iroha, Japanese poetical alphabet.

Vitaly Larichev, Gennady Pikov, Lyudmila Tyuryumina. The Great Empire of Liao. The scholars of Novosibirsk have been studying the history of Kidan people for a long time. They have published Russian translation of the Manchu version of The History of Golden Empire. At present they are preparing an edition of another chronicle, The History of Iron Empire. By publishing a fragment of this chronicle with an extensive article about it, we offer an opportunity to learn more about the brilliant Kidan civilisation that ruled over a part of modern China on the turn of the 2nd millennium.


The Land of Orient

Olga Gorodetskaya. Gentle-Hearted Woman Warrior. Impressions of the Guoguang Beijing opera troupe from Taiwan, which visited Moscow.

Ilya Zaitsev. Russia and the Muscovites: A Look from the Orient. Among a few fantastic images of Russians on Oriental miniatures there is a portrait of a Russian ambassador to Persia in the 16th century. The author identifies this person and relates the story of his stay in Persia.

Elena Dyakonova. With Japanese Simplicity… «Russia of the Silver Age was filled with Oriental motives,» such is the author’s statement. The Japanese art especially influenced Russian artists of the late 19th – early 20th century. One of them, Maximilian Voloshin, reflected this influence in his watercolours.

Viktor Pogadaev. Indonesian Love. The author dwells upon love, marriage, and family. In Indonesia, the relations between sexes show a peculiar mixture of animist practices, ancient morals, and Islamic religion.

Maria Kullanda. Fierce Yataghan. The author presents this famous weapon of Osman Turks and the collection of yataghans in the State Museum of Oriental Art.

Leonid Kostin. A Cook in China is More than a Cook. The author shares his personal impression of the Chinese cuisine and tells us about those common features that make it possible to speak about the integral tradition of Chinese cooking, in spite of considerable differences in regional cooking styles.

As usual, in the end of this issue our reader will find traditional columns: «Reader» and «Orientnet».


The «Orientnet» heading is not just a kind of guide-book on Internet resources about the Orient but also an opportunity to exchange information. Please mail (email) your wishes, suggestions and comments to the following address: orientnet@rsl.ru
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