Friday, December 9, 2016

Russia-Bashkir Monument of Friendship

Sochinskaya ul., Ufa, Respublika Bashkortostan, Russia, 450057
When I was living in Ohio, I used to sit in my parents' backyard and think, "I wonder if there is a place in this yard where no one has ever stepped." In the millions of years of planet earth, is there one centimeter of this yard that has never been touched by single person? I also spend a lot of time thinking what happened in my yard 100, 500, even 1,000 years ago? It's interesting to think about, right? Of course, it's easier to imagine when you have evidence of these historic places, like Angkor Wat in Cambodia, but even without the physical evidence from the time, it's fascinating to imagine what the place was like in ancient times.

The Russia-Bashkir Monument of Friendship stands atop the place of the former Kremlin with scenic views of the Belaya (White) River. Unfortunately, unlike the Kazan and Moscow Kremlins, the former fortress, founded in 1574, no longer exists. In 1965, the Friendship Monument was erected to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Bashkiria joining the Russian Empire. An inscription on the monument says that it was a "voluntary accession," which I find kind of ironic that they are stressing it wasn't forced.
There isn't much else to say about the monument except I read one Trip Advisor review that said there is a legend surrounding the monument. Legend has it if you squeeze the hand of one of the figures a secret passageway will open up exposing a tunnel that leads to Sergei Aksakov's home. This legend alone made me glad that I decided to write a post on the Friendship Monument. It's like Bashkiria's own Chamber of Secrets. I would say Russia, but there are plenty of rumors of secret passage ways, especially around Moscow. The monument is constructed to look like a sword with it's handle under the ground. Maybe it's just me, but that adds to the whole "Chamber of Secrets" vibe I'm getting from this monument. It's the sword that killed the Basilisk. I'm just kidding, and please don't think people actually call this the Harry Potter monument. I'm the only person who does that.
Are there any legends surrounding landmarks in your hometown?


  1. Awesome post - I'm adding it to the ever growing list of places I want to visit in your corner of Siberia :)


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