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Ellen SHINDELMAN KOWITT (ESK)

 

Lyubar, Ukraine

4955' N /2745' E
205 km WSW of Kyyiv, 47 miles WSW of Zhytomer,
37 miles W of Berdychiv, 17 miles SE of Polonnoye

 

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Volynskie Gubernskie Vedomosti (Volynian Provincial Records) "The Borough of Liubar" by Priest V. Komashko, issues #40, 41, 42; October 7th, 14th, and 21st, 1861
Translated by Elena Tsvetkova of Blitz Russian-Baltic Information Center

"The Borough of Liubar"

Liubar is located 87 verst (*) far from the main city of the district - Novogradvolynsk - and 50 versts far from Starokonstantinov. This rich country has many natural gifts for human life. So it could not be uninhabited for a long time. The first settling was of Slavs who made use of it. Though it is unknown when this took place. Its name - Liubartov - was given after the Grand Duke Liubart. Liubar refers to its being established by this prince. He inherited Volyn from his father in 1322. Then Liubar belonged to the Princes Chartoriiskii, who were close relatives on the side of Olgerd, the brother of Liubart. The son of the former was the progenitor of the old Orthodox Princes, Chartoriiskii. One of the Chartoriiskiis - Isabella - was married to Liubamirskii, crowned Marshall. Thus she gave Liubar to the family of these princes. So, it is not surprising that the Liubomirskii Princes, who were Orthodox, zealously constructed churches and monasteries in their manors. The Princes also provided them with lands and various privileges. The Liubomirskiis always gave Liubar to their children. The last representative of the Liubomirskiis - Martin - presented this place to his niece - Karnicka. Her daughter, whose name became Walewska after marriage, still owns this borough.

Liubar is divided by the river Sluch into two parts - the Old and New boroughs.

The Old borough consists of Strizhavka, state part, and so called Shirokaia [Wide] street.

The New borough is a very old borough and includes Dominikanskaia street, where the suburb of Iurovka starts.

Liubar is the best and very populous place in the Southern part of the Novograd Volynskii district. It is the center of trade for the entire neighborhood. The location is wonderful. It is arranged rather regularly. Rather a big quantity of Jewish inns are around the bazaar square. It would not be a shame if they were built in the cities. There are big, two-story stone shops. They are rather advantageously constructed and have taverns on the upper floors. In this beautiful building there are many Jewish stores selling various goods and a good wine cellar. Not far there are the other stores which were built earlier. They sell various small goods - everything which could be bought in district towns, but less expensive. That is why many people come here for shopping especially on Sundays.

"Volynskie gubernskie vedomosti" [Volynian Provincial Records].
Not official section. Issue #41. October 14, 1861. Pgs. 245-247.

"The Borough of Liubar" (continued).

Points of interest.

1. Rather big stone two-story palace of the landowner, Walewska with a big park on the bank of Sluch.

2. In the state part there is a monastery, built in 1775. It was constructed by the means of revenues and donations of various private contributors. Then the present wooden St. George Church was built. This church differs from all other local churches by old Uniate picturesqueness and the same internal decoration. In 1795, it became an Orthodox church. It was realized by local priest, Ioann Malevanskii. It became a parish for residents of the territories of the former Bazilian Order. When the Uniates were joined again in 1838, the church was given to this monastery. There is a St. Onufrii icon in the church. He lived in a hermitage. On June 12, when his image was seen in a monastery well, crowds of people came here for worship. Before this monastery was built, a wooden one had existed here. It was constructed by prince Liubomirskii in a forest as far back as 1616. It was located a little lower than the present monastery, near the main right turn of the road to the river Sluch. Now on the place of the old monastery there is a fruit garden and a stone cellar in it. According to a person, who previously studied in a college attached to the former monastery, the following facts certify the existence of this wooden monastery.

a) When the monastery and college libraries were put in order, he read a Slavic book written by some monk from the Liubar Orthodox monastery. The book was devoted to Anastasiia Liubomirskaia, still Orthodox, from an ancient family. The book contained a narration about the introduction of the Orthodox religion in Russia and that Orthodox monks follow the real Greek religion.

b) Gospel given to this monastery by Prince Dolgorukii, field-Marshall under Peter the Great, contains a note written by him: "St. George Monastery in Liubar"

Anastasiia Liubomirskaia, Princess of Ostrog, provided the monastery with privileges and lands with the obligation to establish a college attached to the monastery. So, the portrait of this princess is still kept there. However, when propaganda for uniting started in these places, then this monastery was included in the union.

In addition to secondary schools, a college was established on September 10, 1818. The number of students was up to 500.

The practical method of teaching was especially noteworthy. If the monks had strictly followed the rules of the Order - only to develop the intellect of boys, enrich them with knowledge, make their hearts full of Christian piety - their aim would have been realized for the good of the students. However, the spirit of Jesuitism got into the monastic cells and led them astray from good and lofty assignments. There was a general order and the government closed the college in 1831. There was a physics laboratory at this college. It was transferred to the Volynian provincial secondary school. There was also a wonderful library mostly including Latin, French, German and other books (17000 volumes in total). The most valuable were the following:

- Bible passed into possession from the Jesuit Collegium (in Ostrog). It was published in Paris in seven languages - Jewish, Greek, Latin, French, German, Slavic and Polish.

- History of Western Church by Petavii in 75 volumes in Latin, Italian and French languages.

The library with all college acts was sent to Kiev.

There was a botanical garden in the monastery near the river Sluch. Here former students had botanic lessons. Doctor Romanskii, well known at that time, arranged a hydropathic establishment right in that place in the garden where the monastic bath is now.

There is the volost (**) government and a village college on Bazilianskaia street. The college is supervised by a priest from the St. Trinity Church who receives a special salary for this from the state budget. Here peasant children learn to read, write, study mathematics and Christian religion.

3. In addition to the monastery church there are the following temples in the Old borough:

Resurrection Church. Independent. Splendid both inside and outside. It is considered to be the oldest in Liubar.

4. Pokrovskaia church. By the way, the aforementioned Ioan Malevanskii, who converted the monastic church to Christianity, was a priest here. After that the priest was Pavel Rafal'skii, brother of St. Petersburg metroploitan, Antonii.

5. Saint Trinity Church surrounded by Jewish houses is like the triumph of Christianity among the faithless. A village college is attached to it.

6. St. George Church. It was reconstructed from a big Bazilian church when the big monastic church became an Orthodox parish.

These churches received special permissions to have lands, as it was stated above, by princes Liubomirskii. One - in 1751, and also - in 1774.

Jews have up to 9 prayer houses here. The most notable by size and arrangement is a stone synagogue newly built near the land owner's garden. It is located near the place of their previous synagogue. When Dnieper Cossack passed by this place they asked the permission of Hetman Bogdan Khmel'nitskii to celebrate a Jewish wedding. At that time they killed 50 Jews and burnt their synagogue which had been existing for 570 years, as it was known from a note inside the synagogue. Jews still hold this place sacred.

There is also an office of administration, drugstore, place of residence for the provision of a mission, two cart manufactures and a brewery here.

"Volynskie gubernskie vedomosti" [Volynian Provincial Records],
Issue #42. October 21, 1861. Pgs. 250-252.

"The Borough of Lubar" (the end).

After Western provinces had been returned to Russia, the Bazilian college and famous Doctor Minikh contributed to the blooming state of Liubar. The college had been existing for 30 years. So many families settled in the borough to teach their children. A doctor was famed by his special art of treatment. Ill people came here from everywhere, so Liubar was crowded with his patients. There were about 1000 of them. The rich drugstore of Vitke was well known not only in the neighborhood. A rich store selling haberdashery and other expensive goods of German Fux existed from 1823 to 1828,. They were not worse than in Berdichev. In addition, there were wine cellars, cloth stores and, what is more important, three book stores. The owners were Rimskii, Shchepanskii and Lekh. The fact that a division of apartments was located here was also favorable for the borough. The borough of Liubar is not declining even now. Much support is provided by land owners who come to the local Dominican Church, one of the most significant in the neighborhood after the church in Berdichev. Many different people come here for fairs. The most notable are three of them, which take place on St. Onufrii Day, St. George Day (April 23) and St. John Baptizer Day. Besides Liubar is located on a big Kupecheskii [Merchant] and Voennyi [Military] roads from Berdichev to Radzivilov and from Brody to Kremenets. Here many various handicraftsmen live such as coppersmiths, blacksmiths, joiners, tailors, carvers, turners, etc.

The corps of the Polish Army was located near Liubar (in so called Strizhavka) during the last years of the past century. Older persons can point out the place of battle, when the Russian army crushed the Poles. They blocked up great sharftS and trenches. Kostiushko, who was pursued, escaped with his army to Chartoriia. He left a big grave three versts far from Liubar on the right and four graves on the left from the road to the settlement of Glezna. The Polish general Serakovskii, absolutely weak, went with divisions of his army to Liubarskii road. On this way, he met the Russian army which crushed the Polish soldiers in the fields between roads near the borough of Labun' and the settlement of Borushkovtsy.

A powerful dam with two good water mills was built on the crossing from the Old borough to the New one. Up stream a ferry was arranged.

In the New borough there are:

1. A Dominican church surrounded by a stone wall. A private college was attached to the church. Many landowners and Polish noblemen gather here on St. Dominic Day.

2. Three Orthodox churches - Prechistenskaia. Independent. It was built on a hill like a lamp above the town. It is still beautiful due to the efforts of priest Ioakinf Terletskii. Two other churches - Mikhailovskaia (poor church) and Spasskaia - are attached to the Prechistenskaia church. Vasilii Malevanskii had been a priest of Spasskaia church, and then became the district archpriest in Vladimir.

There are many Jewish houses in this part of the borough. There are workshops. The most noteworthy is the nobleman Luchitskii's. His piano and especially positive workshops are very well known.

Here mute graves are also located along Chudnovskaia road, like in the Old borough. They add history of the times of Bogdan Khmelnitskii and show the way of Sheremetev, who realized the plans of the former.

Nearby there is a small borough - Iurovka - called after Iurii Liubomirskii who had been living here. There is Vozdvizhenskaia church in the borough. It is much richer and more beautiful both inside and outside than all parish churches in Liubar.

From an economical point of view, Liubar is divided into three districts - Starometsnyi [The Old Borough], Novomestnyi [The New Borough] and Iurovetskii. All of them have their own significant economical institutions.

The soil both in the borough and in the suburb is a rich black. It is used for spring and winter crops. The soil is a bit sandy only along the road to Chertoriia and a partially clay.

7560 residents (both sexes) live in Liubar. 3560 of them are Jews. Old believers also reside here. In addition to agriculture, the residents are involved in trade (especially popular is trade with lard).

Priest V. Komashko
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* Versta (verst) - Old Russian measure of length equal to 3,500 feet.

** Volost - small rural district

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