Traditions and customs of the Yakuts. Culture and life of the peoples of Yakutia


According to archaeological data, the nationality of the Yakuts arose as a result of the union of local tribes who lived near the middle reaches of the Lena River with southern Turkic-speaking migrants. Over time, the new nation created was divided into several groups. For example, northwestern herders, etc.

Yakuts, nationality description

Yakuts are considered one of the most numerous Siberian peoples. Their number reaches over 380 thousand people. Yakuts live in the Irkutsk, Khabarovsk and Krasnoyarsk regions, but mainly in the Republic of Sakha. The language of the Yakuts belongs to the Turkic dialects included in the Altai family. The main activities of the Yakuts are breeding horses and cattle, fishing and hunting. In modern times, the main wealth of the Yakuts is diamonds. The mining industry is very developed. The dwelling of the Yakuts are yurts, which may be small and vice versa, different in height. Yurts are made of wood.


Who worshiped Yakuts from ancient times

Among Yakuts, worship of nature still occupies an important place in belief. All traditions and customs of the Yakuts are closely associated with it. They believe that nature is alive, and all earthly objects have their own spirits and inner strength. For a long time the owner of the road was considered one of the main ones. Previously, he even made sacrificial offerings, leaving horse hair, pieces of cloth, buttons and copper coins at intersections. Similar actions were performed for owners of reservoirs, mountains, etc.

Thunder and lightning in the view of the Yakuts pursue evil spirits. If a tree breaks during a thunderstorm, it is believed that it has healing power. The wind in the view of the Yakuts has four spirits that protect earthly calm. The Earth has a female deity - Aan. It monitors the growth and fertility of all living things (plants, animals, people). In the spring, special offerings are made for Aan.

Water has a master. Gifts are brought to him in the fall and spring in the form of a bark boat with a picture of a person carved on it and attached pieces of matter. It is a sin to drop sharp objects into water.

The owner of the fire is a gray-haired old man, expelling evil spirits. This element was always treated very respectfully. The fire was never extinguished and in the old days carried with them in pots. It is believed that he is the patron of the family and the hearth.


The spirit of the forest Yakuts called Baay Bayanay. He helps in fishing and hunting. In ancient times, the sacred animal was chosen, which could not be killed and eaten. For example, goose, swan, ermine and some others. The eagle was considered the head of all birds. The bear was always the most revered among all groups of Yakuts. His claws and other attributes are still used as charms.


Holidays of the Yakuts are closely associated with traditions and rituals. The most important is Ysyakh. It takes place once a year and reflects the worldview and picture of the world. Celebrate it at the very beginning of summer. According to ancient traditions, a collar, which symbolizes the World Tree and the axes of the Universe, is set up in a glade surrounded by young birch trees. In modern times, it has also become the personification of the friendship of the peoples living in Yakutia. This holiday is considered a family.


Ysyakh always starts with sprinkling kumys of fire and four sides of the world. This is followed by a request to the Deities for bestowing grace. National clothes are put on for the celebration and traditional dishes and koumiss are prepared. Meal is necessarily at the same table with all the relatives. Then they begin to drive round dances, sports competitions, wrestling, archery and tug-wrestling are arranged.

Traditions and customs of the Yakuts: family

Yakuts live in small families. Although polygamy was common before the 19th century. But they all lived separately, and each had its own household. Yakuts enter into marriage in the period from 16 to 25 years. When the matchmaking is paid kalym. If the family is poor, then the bride can be kidnapped followed by her work.

Rites and traditions

The people of the Yakuts have many traditions and rituals, from the description of which can even leave a separate book. Often they are associated with magical acts. For example, to protect dwellings and livestock from evil spirits, Yakuts use a number of conspiracies. The important components here are the ornament on clothes, decorations and utensils. There are also ceremonies for a good harvest, offspring of cattle, the birth of children, etc.


Until now, the Yakuts maintain many traditions and customs. For example, the Sat stone is considered magical, and if a woman looks at it, it loses its strength. It is found in the stomachs or livers of animals and birds. After extraction, it is wrapped in bark and wound with horsehair. It is believed that through certain spells with the help of Sata can cause rain, wind or snow.

Many traditions and customs of the Yakuts have been preserved since ancient times. For example, they have a blood feud. But in modern times it was replaced by a ransom. Yakuts are very hospitable, love to exchange gifts. Maternity rites are associated with the goddess Aiyy-fed, which is considered the patroness of children.


Yakuts have a lot of different kolovaznyh pillars. And this is not by chance, since they have been one of the main components of the culture of the people since ancient times. Beliefs, many rites, traditions and customs are associated with them. All konovazy have a different ornament, decoration, height, shape.


In total there are three groups of such pillars. The first (outhouse) includes those that are installed at the dwelling. Horses are tied to them. The second group includes the pillars used for various religious rites. And in the third one, the concierge, which are established on the main Yakut holiday, Ysyakh.

Yurts of the Yakuts

Yakut settlements consist of several houses (yurts) located at a great distance from each other. The dwelling of the Yakuts is created from round standing logs. But only small trees are used in construction, since cutting large trees is considered a sin. The doors are located on the east, towards the sun. Inside the tent there is a clay plastered fireplace. The dwelling has many small windows. Along the walls are wide loungers of different heights. At the entrance - the lowest. Only the master of the yurt sleeps on high. Sun beds are separated from each other by partitions.

For the construction of the yurt choose a low place, protected from the winds. In addition, the Yakuts are looking for a "happy place". Therefore, among the mighty trees they do not dwell, since they have already taken all the power of the earth. There are many more such moments, as in Chinese geomancy. When choosing a place for building a yurt, they turn to a shaman. Often yurts are built collapsible, so that they can be transported in a nomadic way of life.

National clothes

The national costume of the Yakuts consists of a single-breasted caftan. Previously, for the winter, he was sewn of fur, and for summer - from the skin of a horse or a cow. Kaftan has 4 additional wedges and a wide belt. Sleeves wide. Leather pants and fur socks are worn on the feet. In modern times, the Yakuts use cloth for sewing. Began to wear shirts with collars, belted with a belt.


Wedding fur coats for women are sewn long, to heels. To the bottom expand. The sleeves and the collar are decorated with brocade, red and green cloth, silver ornaments and braid. The hem is trimmed with sable fur. These wedding coats are inherited. On the head, instead of the veil, they wear fur hats with high tops of black or red decorated cloth.


Talking about the traditions and customs of the Yakuts, it is impossible not to mention their folklore. The main thing in it is the epos olonkho, which is considered a kind of poetry, and in performance it looks like an opera. This art has been preserved since antiquity. Olonkho includes many traditional legends. And in 2005, this art was recognized as a UNESCO heritage.

Poems from 10 to 15 thousand lines long are performed by folk storytellers. Not everyone can become them. The storytellers must have an oratorical gift, be able to improvise, have acting talent. Speech must be of different pitch. Large olonkho can be performed for seven nights. The largest and most famous work consists of 36 thousand poems.

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