Evenks, Yakuts, and Negidals called the Nanai natki, natkans, ngatki; the Ainu and the Nivkh called them ants; Yerofey Khabarov’s records preserved the ethnonym the Achan connected with the Akkhani territorial group that lived along the Amur from the mouth of the Sungari and to the village of Sakachi-Alyan (today it is called Sikachi-Alyan) and along the Ussuri. The ethnonym Goldes was the Nanai’s official name before the revolution and can be found in the documents and literature of the time.

General information
The Nanai, a Tungus-Manchu people, live in the Lower Amur plain, at the foothills of the Sikhote-Alin mountains, and along the rivers Urmi, Kur, and Gorin. This is the largest of the eight indigenous peoples of the Khabarovsk territory: the 2010 Census put their number at 12,003 persons. 11,009 of them lived in the Khabarovsk territory (in the Amur, Nanai, Komsomolsk, Solnechny, Khabarovsk districts, in the cities of Khabarovsk and Komsomolsk-on-Amur); 383 persons live in the Primorye territory, 148 in the Sakhalin region, 95 in the Jewish autonomous region, and 69 in the Kamchatka territory. The Sakhalin Nanai migrated from the Amur in 1946.
Surrounding society and the main economic society of the region of residence

Most Nanai live in the Khabarovsk territory. The Khabarovsk territory is Russia’s large industrial region with well-developed engineering, oil refining, timber processing, the energy sector, mining, commercial fishing, and other sectors. One major advantage of the territory is its mineral resource potential. The Khabarovsk territory has major timber resources, 67 % of its area are covered with forests. The Khabarovsk territory’s water supply is one of the largest in Russia.

Spiritual culture

The Nanai’s traditional worldview is based on animating and personifying forces of nature and on harmonious relations between nature and human beings. Shamanism was central to the Nanai’s religious and mythological system. The Nanai’s worldview also experienced some influence of the Far Eastern Buddhism and, to a lesser degree, of Orthodox Christianity.

Supplementary materials
Other materials describing the life, culture and history of the people
Interactive Atlas of the Indigenous Small-Numbered Peoples of the North, Siberia and the Far East