The Eastern Arctic Seas Encyclopedia

2016 Edition
| Editors: Igor S. Zonn, Andrey G. Kostianoy, Aleksandr V. Semenov

Malyi Begichev

Reference work entry

Malyi Begichev – the island is part of the Begichev Islands 9 km from the western end of the Oleniy Peninsula, Bolshoy Begichev Island, and the Republic of Sakha-Yakutia. It is located in the Khatanga Gulf, west of Bolshoy Begichev Island. They are separated by the Pioneer Strait about 9 km wide. The island is 5.2 km long and 4 km wide; the total area is 15 km2. Northeast of the island is the Northern Strait, which separates the island from the Laptev Sea. The distance from the southernmost point of Malyi Begichev to the mainland (Uryung-Tumus Peninsula) is 25 km. In the eastern part, there is a spit. The surface is covered with a number of small lakes. The island is round in shape with a coastline of approximately 17 km. Its southeastern part is lowland, and the rest is a steep coast 10–15 m high. The island, apparently, was discovered in 1739 by the head of the Lena-Khatanga detachment of the Great Northern Expedition of 1733–1743, Lieutenant K.P. Laptev, and named as St. Nicholas Island. Then it was repeatedly “discovered” and first described in May 1908 by the Russian sailor and Yeniseisk industrialist N.A. Begichev and named Nikolay Island in honor of his companion, industrialist N. Semenov. In 1933, an expedition by Glavsevmorput on the schooner “Pioneer” under the leadership of S.D. Lappo renamed the island in honor of its discoverer N.A. Begichev.

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