Nerchinsk nyĕr´chĭnsk [key], city, SE Siberian Russia. Founded in 1654, the city was a Russian outpost in E Asia from the 17th to the 19th cent. A Russo-Chinese border treaty signed at Nerchinsk in 1689 was the first treaty concluded between China and a European power it granted the Transbaykalia area to Russia and left the Amur valley to China. The treaty also permitted Russian trading caravans to go to Beijing Nerchinsk became an important customs and trade center on the caravan route.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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