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Caucasus

Caucasus

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This article is about the geographic region. For other uses, see Caucasus (disambiguation).
Image:Caucasus-ethnic.jpg
The Ethnolinguistic patchwork of the modern Caucasus - CIA map

The Caucasus or Caucasia is a region in Eurasia bordered on the south by Turkey and Iran in Asia, on the west by the Black Sea, on the east by the Caspian Sea, and on the north by Russia. Caucasia includes the Caucasus Mountains and surrounding lowlands.

The Caucasus Mountains are commonly reckoned as a dividing line between Asia and Europe, and territories in Caucasia are variably considered to be in one or both continents; for example, the Persian name for the region (harking of Asiatic links) is Qafqâz. The northern portion of the Caucasus is known as the Ciscaucasus and the southern portion as the Transcaucasus. The highest peak in the Caucasus is Mount Elbrus (5,642 m) which, in the western Ciscaucasus in Russia, is generally considered the highest point in Europe.

The Caucasus is one of the most linguistically and culturally diverse regions on Earth.[citation needed] The nation-states that comprise the Caucasus today are northeastern Turkey, the post-Soviet states: Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, as well various parts of Russia and Iran. The Russian divisions include Krasnodar Krai, Stavropol Krai, and the autonomous republics of Adygea, Kalmykia, Karachay-Cherkessia, Kabardino-Balkaria, North Ossetia, Ingushetia, Chechnya, and Dagestan. Three territories in the region claim independence but are not generally acknowledged as nation-states by the international community: Abkhazia, Nagorno-Karabakh and South Ossetia.

Main article: Fauna of Azerbaijan

The Caucasus is an area of great ecological significance; among its native animals are leopards, brown bears, wolves, European bison, marals and golden eagles. Azerbaijan has the widest biodiversity of all Caucasus and European states. The natural landscape of the Caucasus is one of mixed forest, with substantial areas of rocky ground above the treeline.

The Biblical Mount Ararat where Noah's Ark is said to have landed is regarded as the landmark of the ancient Armenian realm. The peak of Ararat is seasonally capped with snow. In Greek mythology, the Caucasus or Kaukasos was one of the pillars supporting the world. Prometheus was chained there by Zeus. The Roman poet Ovid placed Caucasus in Scythia and depicted it as a cold and stony mountain which was the abode of personified hunger.

[edit] See also

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[edit] External links

cs:Kavkaz da:Kaukasus de:Kaukasien et:Kaukaasia es:Cáucaso eo:Kaŭkazio fa:قفقاز fr:Caucase gl:Cáucaso io:Kaukazia he:קווקז it:Caucaso ko:카프카스 la:Caucasus nl:Kaukasus no:Kaukasia id:Kaukasus ja:カフカス pl:Kaukaz (kraina historyczna) pt:Cáucaso ro:Caucaz ru:Кавказ sl:Kavkaz sr:Кавказ sv:Kaukasien tr:Kafkasya tt:Qawqaz uk:Кавказ zh:高加索

Caucasus

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