Scientific Information Agency
14 September 2023

Monastic Land Tenure in the Middle Seym in the 17th century

Bylye Gody
Monastic Land Tenure in the Middle Seym in the 17th century

The article is devoted to the history of the formation of monastic land ownership in the Putivl district in the 17th century. The authors analyzed written sources containing landmarks on the ground and a map of the Putivl district of the end of the 18th century with toponyms and hydronyms, which are now lost. In addition, some names are associated with archeological monuments, which made it possible to clarify and supplement the passage of the boundaries of land holdings. As a result, three significant areas were identified, which were located near the city of Putivl, around the Molchensky swamp and at the confluence of the Beryukh River into Kleven River. These sites were practically uninhabited — only three villages on an area of more than 80 square km. Some settlements were empty, and their fields were not cultivated. The main income of the monks here was quitrent and crafts. The greatest attention is paid to fishing because of private fasts, the monks could not eat meat food and fish dishes came to the fore. The extraction of honey was mainly carried out by the inhabitants of Putivl, who gave part of the honey to the monastery brethren. In addition, the huge Linevsky forest was a source of building and firewood material, as well as a place for hunting. There is no mention of a mill in the document. At a later time, it was an obligatory attribute of the monastic economy. The brethren received the place and the right to build it earlier, but it is not known whether it was built. There is only a mention of dues for the use of a pond on the Beryuh River. From another document of the same time, it is known about the location of a powder mill here, owned by the Selitrennikov family of industrialists. In general, the Molchensky Monastery at the beginning of the 17th century was a large landowner oriented towards subsistence farming, mainly crafts.

Source: Sergey I. Degtyarev, Evgenij M. Osadchij, Anatolii V. Honcharenko (2023). Monastic Land Tenure in the Middle Seym in the 17th century. Bylye Gody. 18(2): 515-524

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