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Medieval fortress towers of Ingushetia

The Vainakh (Nakh) settlements are found in Ingushetia and Chechnya. The towers are middle-age fortress complex meant to defend from foreign invaders. The settlements consisted of high military defense towers and smaller residential towers.

The oldest fortifications date back to the 1st century AD. The construction of towers grew after the Mongol invasion.

The custom said that a Nakh tower had to be built within a year from nearby river stones (not finishing work in a year was considered a sign of weakness which was a great shame in the Caucasus).

The towers gained popularity after the 12th century AD when the Mongols devastated the region. The Mongol invasion, which continued further into Europe, pushed its native population to live high in the mountains in fortified villages. They were destroyed in large part by the Russians after the 19 century colonial invasion and in the 20th century by the Soviet government. During the 1990’s Chechen wars, it was reported that more towers were damaged by military helicopters.

* Ingushetia’s history told by its own people http://youtu.be/hSrmticKQNM  *