Sebas'topol (Russian pron. Se-vas-top'ol), a Russian seaport and fortress, is situated on the site of an old Tartar village near the south-west extremity of the Crimea, on the southern side of one of the finest natural harbours in the world, 4 1/2 miles long from east to west, and 1/2 mile across. The place is celebrated for its eleven months' siege by the allies during the Crimean war of 1854-55. It sustained repeated bombardments until the capture of the Malakoff and Redan works forced the Russians to evacuate the lines and retire to the north side. The town was completely ruined; the docks and forts still standing were blown up by French and English engineers, and by the treaty of Paris (1856) were not to be restored; but the restrictions were removed by the Conference of London (1871). Since 1885 the Russian government have restored fortifications and reconstructed the docks, mainly for the imperial navy. The sole export is grain, the chief imports cotton and coal. Pop. 50,720.