Cradle and graveyard: across the Orkhon valley

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In brief: Over millennia, the valley has nurtured life, empires, art and religion – and seen its share of death and destruction as well. The Orkhon River Valley is the UNESCO-recognized cradle of Mongolian – and much of Asian – …

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Restless: Mongolians and the Gobi landscape

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In brief: Mongolia’s people, homes and even its landscape are naturally on the move. They say that the morin khuur, a traditional ladle-shaped Mongolian stringed instrument topped by a carved horse’s head, sounds like a wild horse neighing or wind-blown …

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Something old, something new in Ulaan Baatar

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In brief: In Mongolia’s capital city, known as UB, old values like the Buddhist faith have found new strength and the new is slowly transforming daily life. Ulaan Baatar – or UB, as the capital is known – now contains …

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Zanabazar – Mongolia’s monastic hero

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In brief: The 17th c. monk Zanabazar has become a fitting hero for the newly independent Mongolian people, one whose legacy has been spiritual, practical and artistic. Born in 1635 in Tibet, Undur Gegeen Zanabazar was a prodigy in languages …

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Iron, water, blood in Yekaterinburg

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Yekaterinburg began in 1723 with a dam made of Ural larch, one never replaced till this day. It was a planned city, named in honor of Queen Catherine I, and organized as a factory town for metal-working, where the factories …

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