Secrets of the Vera island in lake Turgoyak

Isle of Faith lake Turgoyak, near its Western shore, is primarily notable for located on the megalithic structures. Scientists still can’t accurately explain exactly who built these mysterious structures and for what purpose. To the eighteenth century include information about the stay of the participants of the Pugachev rebellion, headed by Panaevym. In the XIX century this place was called “Pinaev island”. During the XIX century here there was the old believer monastery, the remains of which are well preserved. His appearance legends associated with the ascetic Faith, so in the early twentieth century the name “Island of Faith”.

Lake Turgoyak – one of the gems of the lake necklace Chelyabinsk region. There are two versions about the origin of the name Turgoyak. First: it comes from the Bashkir word tour “stop” and ayak – “foot”, the second version says that the name of Turgoyak of Turkish origin, but is translated as “upper”, that is, the mountain or the main lake. Both names are very fit for him since a long time, the lake was considered sacred, forbidden among the Bashkir tribes. Turgoyak called the younger brother of Baikal lake for its amazingly clear water. Due to the special plankton, the water in the lake under the rays of the sun shines silvery on the inside. The lake is not very large, its length not more than 8 km, width 6 km, just 200 m from the lake Turgoyak hangs over him lake Inyshko. It is believed that Inesco has a double bottom. The lower normal and upper — peat. So maybe there is this legend: on the shore of lake Inyshko was once the camp of Pugachev. Local rich people decided to pay him off, collected 2 barrel of gold. Pugachev did not accept the gift, and gave orders to throw the barrels into the lake, they pushed the top and bottom, they say, still lie somewhere in Inyshko. Lake Turgoyak there are a few archaeological sites. But the most famous of them, of course, is widely known for its mysterious buildings – the megaliths, the island of Faith.

Old believers ‘ monastery and the mystery of the nun’s Faith

Until now, the island is a place of pilgrimage for the representatives of the old believer communities: Miass, Chelyabinsk and Yekaterinburg. According to the legend, transmitted by local residents, staroobryadtsy Faith was engaged in the practice of healing, which has earned the honor and respect among the inhabitants of the surrounding settlements. Money she took, respectively, helped her with the housework throughout the world. To have survived only fragments of historical memory about the identity of the recluse, in his book “Spiritual literature of the old believers of Eastern Russia 17-20 century” survived following mention: “Mother the Faith of a nun known Shartashskaya monastery near Yekaterinburg. After the destruction of the monastery went to the village Pogorelsky, Chelyabinsk district. Expelled from there, settled in 1835 in a cave cell on the island of Turgoyak lake near Miass plant. Her cell and the grave was a place of mass pilgrimage.” Quote confirmed by the memoirs of the veteran, written by our contemporaries, those data confirmed that Vera died on island, buried the dead at the rock of the outcrop, on top of which erected a cross. Since then, the cross already has been updated several times, but the location of the relics remains unchanged.

After the death of a nun, her Skeet men appeared abode. Was built a small Church, a refectory and cells for the monks. In a monastery on the island Pinaeva (the island of Faith – ed.) lived to 20 monks. Local authorities conducted several “forcing”, but the skit had been always reconstructed. Finally it ceased to function only in the late nineteenth century when a stone Church was not only burnt, but also partially destroyed the cells of the elders, etc. In the early 1900s, the island was inhabited by only one of the former novices — the elder of St. Panteleimon.

Any details in the description of the life of the old believers-Wanderers to the present day has not been preserved. The first detailed description of the island and its buildings made in 1909 by the architect N. Vilenski. The construction of all stone buildings of the island, he connects with life on the island community of old believers in the second half of the XIX century. He managed to make a description of stone Church, at that time it was already in ruins. Also describes eight of the destroyed cells in different parts of the island. Of greatest interest is the description of the megalith, which Vilenski interpretered as a refectory for monks and, as stated, the researcher, the megalith was of natural origin and were considered “gentrified cave”. Characteristically, the ratio of these complexes, like the caves preserved in the local population and to the present day. However, excavations on the findings provided researchers the opportunity to talk about the fact that all objects are archaeological antiquities and dated to several thousand years. Old believers came to the island and occupied once built someone built…

Currently, the history of the old believers in South TRANS-Urals are not well understood and still many white spots. Apparently, therefore, information about the life of the hermits of the islanders at all. Thus, surveys on the location of the monastery will allow scientists to gather more detailed information about the life of hermits, adding to the overall mosaic of knowledge about the life of old believer communities. Currently identified 14 structures: the ruins of a chapel, chapels, ten of the construction of dugouts came in different degrees of preservation and cemeteries.

The megaliths of the Vera island.

After a thorough examination of the island, archaeologists made many discoveries, the main of them were open on the island megaliths.

Megaliths are prehistoric structures made of large stone blocks, connected without the use of cement or mortar. Found on the island of Faith megaliths belong to the dolmens. The dolmens are called the megaliths, which in ancient times was a funeral and cult constructions. Megaliths found on the island, according to the researchers, presumably built about 6000 years ago, in BC it is Expected that about 5-8 years ago on the island there was an earthquake and sharply rising water flooded part of the ancient sanctuary. Excavations held in the island of Faith in the last ten years has given inventory period, upper Paleolithic, Neolithic, Eneolithic and bronze age. The scientists also found that most of the monuments of the island, from ancient epochs to the beginning of the twentieth century, tied to the cult. To date, the research considers two of the megalith-dolmen, conventionally they were denoted by numbers # 1 and # 2. To examine the destroyed underwater dolmen thoroughly, it is not possible.

Megalith no. 1.

Built the megalith along the crest of the hill and carved into the rocky ground. The floor slab was covered with a layer of turf. Therefore, if the construction was not priispolzovanii old believers, which opened in the design window openings and cleared the entrances, it would be very little visible on the surface. Separate protruding stones in this topographic situation, the impression of natural rocky outcrops. The total length of construction is 18 m, the width is about 6 m In the entrance to the dolmen is located in the South-East. However, apparently, this entry was done by the old believers, as in the North of the facility is a long corridor passage, oriented along the line West — East, descending the ramp, the stairs to the Central part of the structure. In the internal part of the building there are several cameras that are connected to each other by corridors. The camera in different parts of the megaliths vary in height, for example, in the corridors, the camera height is less than 1.5 m, when the height of the Central cells is about 2m.

All construction blocked a massive stone slabs used as roof megalith. Their length ranges from 1.5 to 3.5 m, depending on the width of the covered area. Plate width is 0.75… 1.3 m the large plate, overlapping the Central chamber reaches a width of two meters, while its weight can reach 17… tons!!! How it was installed – we can only guess.

In the Eastern part, South of the exit structure is not preserved. Plate fell down and was gradually covered with turf. This annexe was not connected by walkways with the main structure, it consisted of two chambers with a possible exit to the Southeast.

Megalith number 2

Second megalithic construction is located 65 m West of the first. Its dimensions are much more modest: length — 8.5 m, width — 2.5~4 m In the middle part of the structure between the two chambers passed the trail that led to the destruction of this part. According to scientists, once between the chambers was a corridor with access to the Northern chamber, through which was conducted the entrance. Here perfectly preserved walls, built of massive boulders. The building is situated on a slope descending to the West, so in the East the upper part is nearly level slope, in which the structure was cut down. The Western wall was built of stones. Probably, after the completion of the operation of the facility, the entire Western wall was partially collapsed and then partially purified believers.

The southern, larger camera, has a distinct rectangular shape and a size of 3×4 m. In the West recorded a very clear entrance height of 60-70 cm, a portal formed by two protruding walls, built of flat stone blocks. In front of the portal lay a large rock, closing probably at the time entrance. The portal closed with a small plate. It apparently originally lay stones removed afterwards. Survived only one of them. These stone and were laid slabs. All this chamber is covered with four plates, three of which were oriented North -South. The plate has a width of 110 cm the North camera has a small size and rectangular shape. End walls made of upright slabs that anywhere else in these facilities are not met. The longitudinal walls are folded, as mentioned above, large boulders, the size of which sometimes exceeds 1 m. However, in the Northern corner of the Western wall supplied vertical plate, and the upper part of augmented cameras smaller.

It is worth saying that the megalith №2 clearly possible to interpret the typology of composite dolmens, known in different countries of the world, including among the Caucasian megaliths. It is believed that this form of data construction of megalithic monuments the earliest and can be traced back to the origins of dolmen culture in General. Also noteworthy is the fact that unique among discovered and investigated dolmens, today, there is nothing similar to the Megalith №2. We are one of the unique buildings, perhaps having a connection with the dolmens scattered around the world.

Underwater city

Divers from the club “Argonaut” descended to the coastal island of Turgoyak and depth almost at the shoreline found various forms of underwater megaliths: the many menhirs, dolmens and even the pyramids! In addition, using ultrasound in the muddy bottom, they found something resembling the frames of boats, ancient amphorae, man-made walls. And all this at a depth of from 1.5 to 5 meters! Surprised them and the so-called anomalous accumulation of stones when at the bottom between two natural ridges of a sudden there were stones, which should not be there. Often such anomalous accumulations are the right shape and require more careful study.

The archaeologists explained natural formations 85% of the finds divers, however, the remaining 15% really surprised scientists. It turned out that on the bottom of the lake really are megaliths — structures of huge granite boulders, processed people. One of the dilapidated dolmens, found at a depth of 1.5–2 meters, gave a clue and a possible explanation for the findings. The fact that the building was carved into the rocky ground. Of course, no one would be carving Megalit under water, and therefore lake levels in those ancient times was much lower and over time the lake has absorbed part of the cultural heritage.

This hunch was confirmed discovered on the seabed at a depth of three meters granite ridge, is clearly elongated along the line East-West. At first the divers thought they were too man-made, but scientists have disproved this conjecture, but noticed that these ridges are substantially broken in the surf. Hence, the lake level was previously below not less than three meters, if these stones could break surf. Further — more. At a depth of six meters divers discovered the walls, reminiscent of a manual clutch. They found that the boulders, which are composed of the wall too the right shape. This conjecture has yet to confirm or refute a scientist, but it is possible that the lake was once lower by as much as five metres!

Equipment, facilities and sources of stone.

Work on the construction of each object began with sampling of excavation in the rocky ground. How exactly is carried out this process, unfortunately, is not identified. Most likely, for the manufacture of stone blocks for the construction of the walls was used the stones obtained in the course of these works. It is not excluded that a small number of stones slabs were also obtained from this excavation, however, most of thus to was impossible, due to difficulty of splitting rocks. Fifty meters up the slope from the first object is located high rocky outcrop made of slabs with horizontal sloistogo. Extraction of large stone slabs here were the most comfortable. The transportation was performed, mainly downhill, although in some places, the slope becomes the reverse direction. Therefore, in such areas it was necessary the construction of roads and log rollers. Probably using bulk and log structures plate was placed in its place. At the same time efforts to transport multi-ton slabs was truly Titanic, the installation process plate, weighing 17 tons is still a mystery, even in our time to install this stove is unlikely to succeed, and what can we say about age-old ancestors.

The problem of cultural affiliation and Dating of the megaliths.

So, upon closer studying of the objects, we can safely say that to consider the megaliths of the island, as objects built by the old believers — it is impossible. And scientists have found that irrefutable confirmation. Primarily this is indicated by the fact that the design object has been modified from the original with a view to its adaptation to economic needs. Besides, in fact, in the tradition of the old believers no construction of such facilities, for the architecture of that time still wooden architecture, especially that on the place where the abode of the shortage in the military wood is not observed.

The question remains, how can you live inside the dolmen in the harsh climate of the Urals if the warm season is more or less possible in the winter at low temperatures the accommodation is strictly impossible. Due to the fact that the stone structures are actually not equipped with any insulation. So we can assume that the objects could only be used in warm time of the year, which again attests to their ritual and religious purpose.

Due to these reasons it can be argued that buildings are of ancient origin and was priispolzovanii the believers. However, precise Dating poses some difficulty. Because of similar cultural objects in the Urals is still not open.


Summing up you can talk about the discovery in the Urals of a new type of unique archaeological monuments, bearing exclusively sacred character. Archaeologists think that near the coastline Turgoyak should continue surveying and it is possible that about the OS. Faith, somewhere in the forest, still remain unexplored dalmannia the same complexes as cult objects never formed in complete isolation.

Just as the collection of additional information about the unknown people that erected in ancient times in the Urals these mysterious objects – dolmens, our group launched a special project “the Ancient heritage of the Urals”. We collect General information about the dolmens in the territory of the Urals, are trying to organize and try to explore mysterious objects, of course, consult on the findings with current archaeologists, real experts in their field. While information about forgotten by now civilization is extremely small, but I hope that someday we will be able to get to the truth and solve “the mystery of the dolmens”.