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From the History of Oil Production in Russia

Ex.1 Read and translate the text.

Although commercial oil production only began in the second half of the nineteenth century, for centuries oil was gathered by peoples who lived in parts of the world where it seeped to the surface. In Russia, the first written mention of the gathering of oil appeared in the sixteenth century. Travelers described how tribes living along the banks of the river Ukhta in the far northern Timan Pechora region gathered oil from the surface of the river and used it as a medicine and a lubricant. Oil gathered from the Ukhta river was delivered to Moscow for the first time in 1597.

In 1702, Tsar Peter the First ordered the setting up of Russia’s first regular newspaper, Vedomosti. The paper’s first issue carried a story about the discovery of oil on the surface of the river Sok in central Russia, while later issues carried similar stories about oil seeps elsewhere in Russia. In 1745, Feodor Pryadunov received permission to begin gathering oil seeping from the bed of the river Ukhta. Pryadunov also built a primitive refinery, delivering some of the products to Moscow and St Petersburg.

Oil seeps had also been reported in the North Caucasus by various travelers who passing through the region. Local people even gathered the oil using buckets to haul it up from wells up to one and a half metres deep. In 1823, the Dubinin brothers opened a refinery in Mozdok to process oil gathered from the nearby Voznesensk oilfield.

Oil and gas seeps were recorded in Baku on the Western shores of the Caspian Sea by an Arab traveler and historian as early as the tenth century. Marco Polo later wrote how people in Baku used oil for medicinal purposes and to administer blessings. By the fourteenth century, oil gathered in Baku was already being exported to other countries of the Middle East. The first oil well in the world was drilled at Bibi-Aybat near Baku in 1846, more than a decade before the drilling of the first well in the US. This event marked the birth of the modern-day oil industry.



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Ex.2 Choose the correct variant:

  1. How was oil used before the period of its commercial production?

a) as a medicine and lubricant

b) as a fuel

c) for heating houses

  1. Where was the first written mention about oil gathering in Russia?

a) in Vedomosti

b) in Peter the First decree

c) there is no information in the text

  1. When was oil gathered from the Ukhta river brought to Moscow

for the first time?

a) in 1745

b) in 1846

c) in 1597

  1. Who can be considered the founder of oil industry in Russia?

a) Peter the First

b) Marco Polo

c) Feodor Pryadunov

  1. Where was the first oil well in the world drilled?

a) near St.Petersburg

b) near Baku

c) in the US

 

Text 4

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Petroleum Timeline | The Birth of the Industry

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