Izmayil (ēzˌmäēlˈ) [key], city (1989 pop. 93,000), extreme S Ukraine, on an arm of the Danube delta and near the Romanian border. It is a rail junction, river port, commercial center, and the naval base of the Danube fleet. Orchards and vineyards surround the city. Izmayil's industries include food and fish processing, winemaking, and the manufacture of bricks and tiles. First known in the 16th cent., the city was a Turkish fortress and capital of a Turkish sanjak. Russian forces took the city twice (1770, 1790) during the Russo-Turkish Wars of Catherine II. Recaptured by the Russians in 1809, it was ceded to them by the Treaty of Bucharest (1812). At the Congress of Paris in 1856, Izmayil was returned to Turkey; but Russia seized the city again in 1878 and held it until 1918, when Romania took it. Transferred to the USSR in 1940, it was reconquered by the Romanians the following year but restored to the USSR in 1947. Remains of the old Turkish fortress have been preserved.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: CIS and Baltic Political Geography