The Don, after curving east through the government of Ryazan, flows generally south through the governments of Tambov, Orel, Voronezh and the Don Cossacks territory, describing in the lastnamed a sweeping loop to the east, in the course of which it approaches within 48 m.
(1) The Kazan Tatars, descendants of the Kipchaks settled on the Volga in the 13th century, where they mingled with survivors of the old Bulgarians and partly with Finnish stems. They number about half a million in the government of Kazan, about 100,000 in each of the governments of Ufa, Samara and Simbirsk, and about 300,000 in Vyatka, Saratov, Tambov, Penza, Nizhniy-Novgorod, Perm and Orenburg; some 15,000 belonging to the same stem have migrated to Ryazan, or have been settled as prisoners in the 16th and 17th centuries in Lithuania (Vilna, Grodno and Podolia); and there are some 2000 in St Petersburg, where they pursue the callings of coachmen and waiters in restaurants.
The emissaries of Razin, armed with inflammatory proclamations, had stirred up the inhabitants of the modern governments of Nizhniy-Novgorod, Tambov and Penza, and penetrated even so far as Moscow and Great Novgorod.
As a precaution against Tatar invasions he founded fortified towns on his southern frontiers - Tambov, Kozlov, Penza and Simbirsk; but when the Don Cossacks offered him Azov, which they had captured from the Turks, and a National Assembly, convoked for the purpose of considering the question, were in favour of accepting it as a means of increasing Russian influence on the Black Sea, he decided that the town should be restored to the sultan, much to the disappointment of its captors.
Limit of the ante-steppe is represented by a line drawn from the Pruth through Zhitomir, Kursk, Tambov and Stavropol-on-Volga to the sources of the Ural river.