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KISHINEV (Kisftlanowoi the Moldavians) ,a town of south-west Russia, capital of the government of Bessarabia, situated on the right bank of the Byk, a tributary of the Dniester, and on the railway between Odessa and Jassy in Rumania, 120 m. W.N.W. from the former. At the beginning of the igth century it was but a poor village, and in 1812 when it was acquired by Russia from Moldavia it had only 7000 inhabitants; twenty years later its population numbered 35,000, while in 1862 it had with its suburbs 92,000 inhabitants, and in 1900 125,787, composed of the most varied nationalities Moldavians, Walachians, Russians, Jews (43%), Bulgarians, Tatars, Germans and Gypsies. A massacre (pogrom) of the Jews was perpetrated here in 1903. The town consists of two parts the old or lower town, on the banks of the Byk, and the new or upper town, situated on high crags, 450 to 500 ft. above the river. The wide suburbs are remarkable for their gardens, which produce great quantities of fruits (especially plums, which are dried and exported), tobacco, mulberry leaves for silkworms, and wine. The buildings of the town are sombre, shabby and low, but built of stone; and the streets, though wide and shaded by acacias, are mostly unpaved. Kishinev is the seat of the archbishop of Bessarabia, and has a cathedral, an ecclesiastical seminary with 800 students, a college, and a gardening school, a museum, a public library, a botanic garden, and a sanatorium with sulphur springs. The town is adorned with statues of Tsar Alexander II. (1886) and the poet Pushkin (1885). There are tallow-melting houses, steam flourmills, candle and soap works, distilleries and tobacco factories. The trade is very active and increasing, Kishinev being a centre for the Bessarabian trade in grain, wine, tobacco, tallow, wool and skins, exported to Austria and to Odessa. The town played an important part in the war between Russia and Turkey hi 1877-78, as the chief centre of the Russian invasion.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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