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Tomsk (2002 pop. 483,800), a city in the southwest of Siberian Federal District, i.e. W Siberia, Russia, seat of the Tomsk Oblast.

In 1604 the Russian tsar Boris Godunov ordered Cossack leader Gavril Pisemsky and boyar son Tyrkov to found a fort on the River Tom, on Tatar land, to protect the river crossing. It became important as a military center for pacifying the native people and evolved into a regional administrative center. Beginning in the late 1830s, its population grew quickly thanks to the intensifying gold-mining activity in Siberia. First university in Siberia (1880).