Historama, August 12

The first-ever Russian peace treaty and the deadly expoision at the Kursk submarine are recalled in tonight’s Historama.

­Russia’s first-ever peace treaty

On this day in 1323, Russia and Sweden signed a peace treaty. This was the first time Russia had signed any such document in its history.

By this agreement, Prince Yury Danilovitch and King Magnus Ericsson put an end to the 30-year-long war.

As this happened in the Oreshek fortress, the agreement was named the “Treaty of Oreshek”. The Swedes call it Noteborg, though.

Unfortunately, the treaty was not particularly successful: the Swedes continued the skirmishes in Russia’s territory.

­Explosion on Russian submarine results in tragedy

This day in 2000 saw a tragic explosion on the Russian submarine, ‘Kursk’, in the Barents Sea.

The catastrophe happened when a hydrogen leak caused all the torpedo warheads on the submarine to explode, killing all 118 sailors and officers on board.

Britain, the United States and Norway all offered their help to rescue the vessel, but Russian authorities repeatedly refused.

Finally, four days after the accident, they accepted Britain and Norway’s help, but by this time it was too late to save anyone.

Read more on this event in Russian history

­Man who discovered Alaska is born

On August 12, 1681, Danish navigator Vitus Bering was born in Horsens.

Bering joined the Russian navy in 1703 and rose fast through the ranks.

He was a favourite of Peter the Great and became the first European to visit Alaska and led many expeditions to the Far Eastern region of Kamchatka.

He eventually died in 1741 on an unnamed island in this region, which was soon christened Bering Island after him.

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