Navigation – Plan du site

The Lands of Orthodoxy in The Seventeenth Century

circa 1590‑1720
Paul Bushkovitch, Nikolaos A. Chrissidis et Radu G. Păun
p. 259-270

Texte intégral

  • 1 A. Ebbinghaus, Die altrussischen Marienikonen‑Legenden (Wiesbaden : Harrassowitz, 1990) ; P. Gonnea (...)

1The last thirty or so years have witnessed a dramatic expansion of the study of the history of religion as practiced by the various peoples historically Orthodox. The traditional preoccupation with ecclesiastical structures and the literary analysis of devotional texts no longer monopolize the subject. The history of liturgy, monasticism, and popular devotions has come to occupy the attention of more and more scholars. The recent literature, in addition to providing much new information and new ideas, has also revealed how much remains unknown.1 The present issue of the Cahiers du monde russe is an attempt to present some of that recent research but also, indirectly so, to indicate where the blanks remain.

  • 2 Макарий (Булгаков, митрополит), История русской церкви [Makarii (Bulgakov, metropolitan), History o (...)
  • 3 For example, Д.С. Лихачев, Человек в литературе Древней Руси [D.S. Likhachev, The Human in the Lite (...)
  • 4 Exceptions to this rule were Д.М. Буланин, Переводы и послания Максима Грека [D.M. Bulanin, Transla (...)

2One of the principal challenges of studying Orthodoxy in the fifteenth to the eighteenth century is the tradition of strong national historiographical schools that have remained isolated from one another and rarely communicated (and usually adversarially so) over the last century and a half of scholarly endeavor.2 Much of the history of Old Slavic literature, to be sure, was written by scholars trained in Slavic philology, so that the relations among the texts produced in Russia, the Ruthenian lands, and the Slavic Balkans were the object of continuous attention.3 That very tradition, brilliant as it has been, has also had the effect in Russian scholarship of marginalizing the relationship to the Byzantine and even post‑Byzantine Greek prototypes of many medieval Slavic literary traditions.4 It has also had the effect of largely leaving out the Romanian principalities, even though their sacred language was Old Slavic until the seventeenth century, and despite their very important contribution to the development of Orthodox culture.

  • 5 The standard study on the Ecumenical Patriachate under Ottoman rule is P. Konortas, “Les rapports j (...)
  • 6 For the older point of view, see especially Н.Ф. Каптерев, Характер отношений России к православном (...)
  • 7 Recent work includes G. Podskalsky, Griechische Theologie in der Zeit der Türkenherrschaft (1453‑18 (...)

3These relations were not solely literary. Texts which philologists found less interesting, such as the collections of decisions of the councils that made up the Kormchaia kniga, are equally important to the historian of religion. There are also many issues that go far beyond texts. After the fifteenth century the Orthodox Church in the Ottoman Empire was mostly in Greek hands, and it had complicated relations with the Metropolitanate of Kiev and the Metropolitanate/Patriarchate of Moscow5. These relations have until quite recently been known primarily anecdotally and reduced to the exchange of alms and gifts, the Greek involvement in the Schism of the Old Belief, and the occasional Greek clerical involvement in some foreign policy ventures. Political circumstances (Russia’s imperialist claims to the protectorate of the Orthodox peoples in the Balkans during the nineteenth century, as well as the communist regimes in the twentieth century) are at least partially responsible for this situation, as they seriously influenced historical scholarship.6 During the last decades, however, a number of works have been devoted to political, cultural and ecclesiastical relationships among the various parts of the Orthodox world, thereby opening new perspectives for the study of Orthodoxy as a whole.7

  • 8 Many recent studies continue the traditional focus on the political and national aspects of religio (...)
  • 9 A pioneering work in this field should be considered Л. Павловћ, Култови лица код Срба и Македонаца (...)
  • 10 See, however, E. Bakalova, “La vénération des icônes miraculeuses en Bulgarie. Aspects historiques (...)
  • 11 See, for instance, R.G. Păun, “Reliques et pouvoir au xviiie siècle roumain. Le dossier du problème (...)

4The interrelations of the institutions and texts among the various Orthodox peoples are not the only important issues of the interaction of the Orthodox communities. There is also an important comparative problem. Discussion of many of the issues which historians have pondered as unique or at least peculiar/characteristic to one or another Orthodox culture would benefit from the knowledge of analogous (or the opposite) practices in other Orthodox environments. There is a great deal known about the cults of saints and miracle working icons in Russia, for example, but much less so for the Metropolitanate of Kiev8 or the Greeks and Balkan Slavs in this period.9 In those areas, the study of such popular devotions is less extensive for the period after 1453.10 In these cases, the scarcity of available sources often obliges historians to refer only to the upper levels of society, namely the monarchical power and the political elites.11

  • 12 Among the exceptions, one should take into account the memoirs of the priest Synadinos ; see Consei (...)
  • 13 Several such attempts must be mentionned here : M. Cazacu, “Moines savants et popes ignorants dans (...)
  • 14 A good example is D.P. Hupchick, The Bulgarians in the 17th Century : Slavic Orthodox Society and C (...)
  • 15 The classic work on this topic is A. Argyriou, Les Exégèses grecques de l’Apocalypse à l’époque tur (...)
  • 16 See Ν. Πίσσης, “Τροπές της ‘ρωσικής προσδοκίας’ στα χρόνια του Μεγάλου Πέτρου [N. Pissis, Twists of (...)
  • 17 R. Creţeanu, “Traditions de famille dans les donations roumaines au Mont Athos,” in E. Stănescu, N. (...)
  • 18 See, for instance, Ал. Фотић, Света Гора и Хиландар у Османском царствy XV‑XVII век [Al. Fotić, Mou (...)

5Popular religion is only one part of the problem of “lived Orthodoxy.” We know fairly well what the church taught, but what did it mean to the laity ? This problem has always been exceptionally difficult in the history of all religious communities, since there are usually few sources and those are hard to interpret. For the Orthodox lands we do not have many diaries or collections of letters from this period, sources that exist, if not always in abundance, for Western Europe and its confessions.12 Even in Western Europe these sources are not without problems : most of them come from individuals who were in one sense or another exceptional. The authors were mostly intellectual leaders of their respective churches or simply unusually articulate or pious laymen and laywomen. The “average” believer remains hard to find. For the Orthodox peoples, the religious experience of the laity (or even the clergy) has to be teased out of sources that were not meant to reflect personal experience.13 Fortunately the long tradition of Slavic and Greek manuscript studies still has a great deal to offer. A closer reading of the manuscripts of texts long studied by scholars can produce a sense of how the texts were read that compensates to a large extent for the absence of more personal sources.14 A telling example in this respect is the study of prophetic and oracular literature, which has seen notable development in recent years.15 Comparative research in this field has significantly enriched our knowledge about social actors’ spiritual framework and ideals and has shown how diverse the uses and interpretations of religious texts could be, according to specific political circumstances and personal/collective interests and expectations. Hope in Russia’s mission of delivering the Orthodox peoples from the Ottoman “yoke” is a case in point.16 Relevant results for a better understanding of the individual and group devotion are also produced by the study of pious donations for the holy places, on the basis of donation charters, testaments, commemoration lists,17 and various Ottoman documents.18

  • 19 From the recent bibliography devoted to these topics, see D. Wendebourg, Reformation und Orthodoxie (...)
  • 20 B. Skinner, The Western Front of the Eastern Church : Uniate and Orthodox Conflict in 18th‑Century (...)

6The Orthodox peoples did not live in isolation from one another, but they also did not live in isolation from the other Christian confessions. The Catholic and Protestant worlds left a lasting impact on Orthodoxy.19 Even in the Middle Ages, Byzantine theologians had to confront Catholic scholasticism. Later on Patriarch Cyril Loukaris, Metropolitans Peter Mohyla and Stefan Iavorskii, and Archbishop Feofan Prokopovich are testimony to the impact of Catholic and Protestant teaching. Yet we know a great deal about what these Orthodox hierarchs thought but much less about the impact of their teachings. A related problem is the Union of Brest (1596) and the Uniate church that came into being in its wake, as well as the similar union in Transylvania (1697‑1701). The Uniates formed a unique conglomerate of Orthodox and Catholic tradition and practices which had an important impact on Orthodoxy, at least among some of the Eastern Slavs, the Romanians, and some of the Greeks, for they partially forced the Orthodox to define their own beliefs in order to combat them. At the same time, Uniate writings penetrated even into the libraries of the Russian Old Believers. We know much about the eighteenth century, yet much of Uniate practice and teaching remains unstudied.20

  • 21 See, among others, M.S. Flier, “The Iconography of Royal Procession : Ivan the Terrible and the Mus (...)

7There are many areas in the history of Orthodoxy that recent scholarship will require historians to reconsider. Much ink has been spilled on conceptions of Russia and the Russian tsar that come out of Orthodox spirituality, the Third Rome and the New Israel motifs and the rituals that illustrated them. Yet few historians of these themes have put them in a truly international framework that included not just a real or imagined Byzantine tradition but the beliefs and values of the Orthodox world in the early modern era.21 The institutional structure of the church in all the Orthodox territories is another area. The church inherited a common tradition enshrined in the decisions of the councils and Byzantine practice, but the circumstances of Russia, of the Orthodox of Poland‑Lithuania and of the Ottoman Empire were radically different. There needs to be a fuller examination of the actual practices of the church in each of those areas, one that goes beyond the older assumptions. Without that, it will be difficult to understand fully the interactions among patriarchs and monks, bishops and laymen, across the many lands of Orthodoxy. Finally, a major methodo­logical problem arises from the relatively late expansion of scholarly inquiry into Orthodoxy. The study of Western Christianity is much more extensive and has a more complex intellectual history than that of Orthodoxy. It has been influenced by Western social science, philosophy, and historiography in fundamental ways, to say nothing of Western politics and cultural battles. It is not possible or desirable for historians of Orthodoxy to ignore the achievements of their colleagues engaged with the history of Western Christianity. The problem, however, is the relevance of that intellectual framework. Is “social disciplining,” for instance, a useful concept for Orthodoxy, and to what extent ? The position of parish clergy among Catholics, Protestants, and Orthodox was rather different. How did that fact influence the daily experience of parish clergy and laity alike ?

8The articles presented here attempt to make a contribution toward answering some of these questions. They also aim at addressing the issues across the traditional boundaries of nationality, statehood, and discipline, covering the Eastern and Southern Slavs, the Romanians and the Greeks. Alfons Brüning tries to get at the reality of parish life in Russia, including the Ukrainian Hetmanate, in the later seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The broader trends in the church affected the parish clergy to some extent, but the result was largely a compromise. Priests were better educated and more active in the parish beyond the celebration of the liturgy, but the basic tradition of appointment by election of the parishioners remained. Greater supervision by the bishops did not alter the situation, though it may have encouraged the election of better educated priests. A central part of the innovation in the Russian church at that time was the introduction and slow expansion of the use of sermons to educate and exhort the laity. Aleksandr Lavrov shows that the rise of the sermon in the seventeenth century Russian church was not the result of the impact of Ukrainian preachers alone. The Greek hierarchy contributed as well to this stream of new texts and new methods, as indicated by the case of Gabriel, the metropolitan of Nazareth, in 1650‑51. He preached in Moscow, and his sermons circulated among the Zealots of Piety. After the 1650s the Ukrainians and Simeon Polotskii were the most influential, and not only at court, as the large sermon collection known as the Statir demonstrates. The author was a priest serving in the Stroganov domain in the Urals, yet he clearly had read Simeon Polotskii’s printed sermons and those of some of the Ukrainian preachers.

9At the same time innovation also relied on older ideas. Kevin Kain demonstrates that Patriarch Nikon consciously established monasteries that followed the pattern set by Constantine and Helen in their own alleged establishment of churches and monasteries in Jerusalem. The Voskresenskii Monastery was the last and most important in the series. It celebrated both Russia’s role as the site of the New Jerusalem, the land of God’s chosen people, and the role of the tsars, both Tsar Aleksei and Tsarina Maria, as patrons of the church. The objections that Nikon’s foundation provoked only confirm the importance of the notion of the New Jerusalem in seventeenth century Russia.

10One of the areas least known to scholars until recently was the religious life of the Ruthenian population of the Polish‑Lithuanian state. Lilya Berezhnaya attempts to get at an old and unresolved problem : what did the Union of churches in the Ruthenian lands actually mean in practice ? She looks at two very different sources, first the Uniate writings of Ipatii Potii and Meletii Smotryts´kyi and then a series of testaments of Uniate, Catholic, and Orthodox believers of the later sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Potii and Smotryts´kyi tried in different ways to reconcile the differences between Catholicism and Orthodoxy rather than stress them, and the ordinary believers were even less interested in controversial issues. Indeed they were so successful that it is difficult now to identify the testator from the text alone. Soteriology or papal primacy were not mentioned. The parishes of the Metropolitanate of Kiev, Orthodox and Uniate, have largely escaped the attention of historians, fascinated by the theological disputes and the political and “national” ramifications of the religious upheavals of the seventeenth century. Laurent Tatarenko shows that the evolution of the parish cannot be derived solely from theological and ecclesiological differences. The reality was a conflicting series of attempts at reform, coming from the episcopate of both churches, the writers and polemicists, and the Orthodox brotherhoods. The parishes, entwined as they were with the laity and the property of magnates and others in the churches and their lands, developed in different ways. The Uniate bishops tried to reorganize their parishes on the Catholic models, while the Orthodox brotherhoods sought to substitute for the absent bishops. The Orthodox also produced a great expansion in the number and significance of the monasteries. The division of the metropolitanate gave rise to a new synthesis in the Hetmanate, with land, wealth, and control passing into the hands of the Orthodox hierarchy, the monasteries, but also the parishioners, who continued to elect their priests with greater autonomy than before. These impulses were all intertwined and only at the very end of the century did the Uniate and Orthodox churches diverge, now firmly separated by a political boundary.

11For the Orthodox Balkans, several articles in the present volume show the importance of crossing boundaries (sometimes artificial, sometimes cultural, always linguistic) in order to understand the way in which Orthodox written culture developed in the early modern period. Konrad Petrovszky’s article is representative of the way in which detective work in manuscript marginalia can be combined with a comparative frame in order to tackle the difficult topic of written communication in early modern Orthodoxy. What he calls the “vernacularizing trend,” that is, the use of the vernacular in scribal notes, is yet another area of contact with and influence from trends further West in the world of Orthodoxy. By reassessing the value of scribal notes as tools of memory, interpretation and personal approach to events, Petrovszky both enriches our understanding of seventeenth‑century scribal cultures and also shows the commonalities and differences among the various areas of the Orthodox world. His article proves how useful it is to move beyond the assumptions of Orthodox official literature and look for the mosaic of the vernacular. Tackling a major source for popular religiosity of the time, Dilyana Radoslavova shows that during the seventeenth century the Bulgarian Orthodox community developed a new literary language based on the vernacular Greek anthology Treasure by Damaskenos Studites. Radoslavova argues that the new attitude towards the book and the written word reflected in this choice created in the long run a series of Bulgarian damaskini which in turn contributed to Bulgarian self‑identity and ultimately to Bulgarian nationalism.

12Ovidiu Olar revisits one aspect of the saga of Patriarch Cyril Loukaris by tracing the reactions to the publication of the New Testament in Greek in Geneva in 1638. His contribution shows how much we still do not know about even those developments of the Orthodox seventeenth‑century that have been the object of research. Olar argues that much of the acerbic reaction to the translation stemmed from the prelates’ fear of losing their monopoly on control of access to the scripture. Direct access to such texts among the believers could endanger the prestige and status of the clergy. Olar suggests that such resistance was concentrated among the higher clergy in Constantinople, even though in other parts of the Orthodox world the project of accessible scriptures had won adherents even among lay leaders.

13This was the case of Wallachians and Moldavians, for whom the use of Greek and Slavonic—the two sacred languages of Orthodoxy—had become truly problematic during the seventeenth century, for the flock was not able to understand the divine word in a foreign language. The article by Ivan Biliarsky and Radu G. Păun deals with a particular case : the only known Romanian version of the Synodikon of Orthodoxy, inserted in the Slavo‑Romanian Triôdion and published in Buzău (Wallachia) in 1700. Seen as a true cornerstone of the Orthodox faith since its establishment in 843 by Patriarch Methodius I, the Synodikon of Orthodoxy is above all a polemical text and a lieu de mémoire. The fact that it was translated into Romanian and published precisely in 1700 is explained by the authors in the context of the progress made by Roman Catholic proselytism in Transylvania and in the Ruthenian lands that culminated with the union of a part of the Orthodox, mainly Romanians, with Rome, on one hand, and with the consolidation of the Union carried out in Brest a century earlier, on the other. The Synodikon in Romanian appears thus as an ideological weapon that the main actors of the time—Prince Constantin Brâncoveanu, Metropolitan Teodosie and Patriarch Dositheos II of Jerusalem—raised against the Latin threat. This case study sheds light on the interrelations of religion and politics in the long and complicated process of formation of the liturgical corpus of texts and practices in the Romanian culture.

14The Orthodox world in the early modern era was complex and varied greatly from country to country. In the small space of the present issue of the Cahiers du monde russe only a sampling of this variety is possible, but the new information and new approaches here should stimulate historians and make us all more aware of the richness of the experience that we have tried to describe.

Haut de page


1 A. Ebbinghaus, Die altrussischen Marienikonen‑Legenden (Wiesbaden : Harrassowitz, 1990) ; P. Gonneau, La maison de la Sainte Trinité : un grand monastère russe du Moyen‑Âge tardif, 1345‑1533 (P. : Klincksieck, 1993) ; П.С. Стефанович, Приход и приходское духовенство в России в ХVI‑ХVII веках [P.S. Stefanovich, The Parish and the Parish Clergy in Russia in the 16th and 17th Centuries] (M. : Indrik, 2002) ; И.А. Лобакова, Житие митрополита Филиппа : исследование и тексты [I.A. Lobakova, The Life of Metropolitan Filipp : Analysis and Variant Texts] (SPb. : Dmitrii Bulanin, 2006) ; D.B. Miller, Saint Sergius of Radonezh, His Trinity Monastery, and the Formation of the Russian Identity (Dekalb, IL : Northern Illinois University Press, 2010) ; J. Getcha, La réforme liturgique du métropolite Cyprien de Kiev : l’introduction du typikon sabaïte dans l’office divin (P. : Les Éditions du Cerf, 2010) ; О.С. Сапожникова, Русский книжник XVII века Сергий Шелонин : редакторская деятельность [O.S. Sapozhnikova, A Russian Bookman of the 17th Century, Sergei Shelonin : Editorial Activity] (M. : Al´ians‑Arkheio, 2010) ; М.А. Корзо, Нравственное богословие Симеона Полоцкого : освоение католической традиции московскими книжниками второй половины ХVII века [M.A. Korzo, The Moral Theology of Simeon Polotskii : The Mastering of the Catholic Tradition by Muscovite Bookmen in the Second Half of the Seventeenth Century] (M. : RAN‑Institut Filosofii, 2011). A useful work, despite the confessional perspective adopted by the author, is V. Barbu, Purgatoriul misionarilor : Contrareforma în Ţările Române în secolul al XVII‑lea [The Purgatory of Missionaries : Counter‑Reformation in the Romanian Lands, 17th c.] (Bucarest : Academiei, 2008). At least three PhD. theses should also be mentioned here : L. Tatarenko, “Discordia concordans. Les Ruthènes de la grande‑principauté de Lituanie au temps de l’Union de Brest (milieu du xvie siècle‑milieu du xviie siècle),” Université Paris 1 – Katolicki Uniwersytet Lubelski, 2014 ; C. Santus, “Trasgressioni necessarie : Communicatio in sacris, collaborazioni e conflitti tra le comunità cristiane orientali (Levante e Impero ottomano, XVII‑XVIII secolo),” Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa – École pratique des hautes études, Paris, 2015 ; O.‑V. Olar, “La boutique de Théophile. Les relations du patriarche de Constantinople Kyrillos Loukaris (1570‑1638) avec la Réforme,” École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Paris, 2015.

2 Макарий (Булгаков, митрополит), История русской церкви [Makarii (Bulgakov, metropolitan), History of the Russian Church], 9 vols. (M. : Izdatel´stvo Spaso‑Preobrazhenskogo Valaamskogo monastyria, 1994‑97 (originally SPb., 1877‑91) ; E.E. Голубинский, История русской церкви [E.E. Golubinskii, History of the Russian Church], 3 vols. (M. : Universitetskaia Tipografiia, 1901‑1911) ; Г. Флоровский, Пути русского богословия [G. Florovskii, Ways of Russian Theology], 3d ed. (P. : YMCA Press, 1983) ; Ђ. Слијепчевић, Историја Српске Православне Цркве [Dj. Slijepčević, History of the Serbian Orthodox Church], 2 vols. (Munich : Iskra, 1962‑1966) ; M. Păcurariu, Istoria Bisericii Ortodoxe Române [History of the Romanian Orthodox Church], 2 vols. (Bucharest : Institutul Biblic şi de Misiune Ortodoxă al Bisericii Ortodoxe Române, 1980) ; O. Тодорова, Православната църква и българите XV‑XVIII век [O. Todorova, The Orthodox Church and the Bulgarians, 16th‑17th c.] (Sofia : Akademično Izdatelstvo “Prof. Marin Drinov,” 1997).

3 For example, Д.С. Лихачев, Человек в литературе Древней Руси [D.S. Likhachev, The Human in the Literature of Old Russia] (M. : Izdatel´stvo Akademii nauk SSSR, 1958) ; Idem, Развитие русской литературы Х‑XVII веков [The Development of Russian Literature, 10th‑17th c.], 3d ed. (M. : Nauka, 1998) ; R. Picchio, Letteratura della Slavia ortodossa, IX‑XVIII sec. (Bari : Dedalo, 1991). See also Б. Ангелов, Из старата българска, руска и српска литература [B. Angelov, From the Old Bulgarian, Russian and Serbian Literatures], 3 vols. (Sofia : Bălgarskata Akademija na naukite, 1958‑1978).

4 Exceptions to this rule were Д.М. Буланин, Переводы и послания Максима Грека [D.M. Bulanin, Translations and Epistles of Maksim the Greek] (L. : Nauka, 1984) ; Н.В. Синицына, Максим Грек в России [N.V. Sinitsyna, Maksim the Greek in Russia] (M. : Nauka, 1977) ; Б.Л. Фонкич, Греческо‑русские культурные связи XV‑XVII вв. : греческие рукописи в России [B.L. Fonkich, Greek‑Russian Cultural Relations, 15th‑17th Centuries : Greek Manuscripts in Russia] (M. : Nauka, 1977) ; O.B. Strakhov, The Byzantine Culture in Muscovite Rus´. The Case of Evfimii Chudovskii (1620‑1705) (Cologne – Weimar – Vienna : Bohlau, 1998).

5 The standard study on the Ecumenical Patriachate under Ottoman rule is P. Konortas, “Les rapports juridiques et politiques entre le Patriarcat de Constantinople et l’administration ottomane de 1453 à 1600 (d’après les documents grecs et ottomans),” PhD diss., University of Paris I, 1985. Idem, Οθωμανικές θεωρήσεις για τὸ Οικουμενικό Πατριαρχείο. Βεράτια για τους προκαθήμενους τὴς Μεγάλης Εκκλησίας (17ος ‑ αρχες 20ου αιώνα) [Ottoman Views of the Ecumenical Patriarchate : Berats for the Appointments of the Leaders of the Great Church, 17th‑early 20th c.] (Athens : Alexandreia, 1998). A more recent attempt is T. Papademetriou, Render unto the Sultan. Power, Authority, and the Greek Orthodox Church in the Early Ottoman Centuries (Oxford : Oxford University Press, 2015). See also : Le Patriarcat œcuménique de Constantinople aux xivexvie siècles : rupture et continuité. Actes du Colloque international, Rome 5‑7 décembre 2005 (P. : De Boccard, 2007). For a comparative view, see . Chrissidis, “The World of Eastern Orthodoxy,” in Hamish Scott, ed., The Oxford Handbook of Early Modern European History, 1350-1750, vol. 1 : Peoples and Place, (Oxford – New York : Oxford University Press, 2015), 626-651.

6 For the older point of view, see especially Н.Ф. Каптерев, Характер отношений России к православному востоку в XVI и XVII столетиях [N.F. Kapterev, Character of the Relations of Russia with the Orthodox East in the 16th and 17th c.], 2nd ed. (Sergiev Posad : Izdanie Knizhnogo magazine M.S. Elova, 1914). For the Soviet historiography’s perspective, see, among others, Славянский сборник. I. Образование сербского, польского и чешского государств. II. Исторические связи славян [Slavic Collection. I. Formation of the Serbian, Polish and Czech States. II. Historical Relations of the Slavs] (М. : ОГИЗ, Gosudarstvennoe izdatelʹstvo politicheskoi literatury, 1947) ; Б.Н. Флоря, coord., Связи России с народами Балканского полуострова. Первая половина XVII в. [B.N. Florja, coord., Russia’s Relations with the Peoples of the Balkan Peninsula. First Half of the 17th c.] (M : Nauka, 1990).

7 Recent work includes G. Podskalsky, Griechische Theologie in der Zeit der Türkenherrschaft (1453‑1821) : Die Orthodoxie im Spannungsfeld der nachreformatorischen Konfessionen des Westens (Munich : C.H. Beck, 1988) [Greek edition : Η ελληνική θεολογία επί Tουρκοκρατίας 1453‑1821 : Η ορθοδοξία στη σφαίρα επιρροής των δυτικών δογμάτων μετά τη μεταρρύθμιση, translated by G.D. Metallenos (Athens : Morphotiko Hidryma Ethnikes Trapezes, 2005)] ; Γκ. Χέρινγκ, Οικουμενικό Πατριαρχείο και ευρωπαϊκή πολιτική 1620‑1638 [G. Hering, The Ecumenical Patriarchate and European Policy, 1620‑1638], rev. ed., translated by D. Kourtovik (Athens : MIET, 1992. Originally published in German : Ökumenisches Patriarchat und europäische Politik : 1620‑1638, Wiesbaden : Steiner, 1968) ; Ό. Αλεξανδροπούλου, Ο Διονύσιος Ιβηρίτης και το έργο του – Ιστορία της Ρωσίας [O. Alexandropoulou, Dionysios Iverites and his Work “History of Russia”] (Herakleio : Vikelaia Demotikē Vivliothēkē, 1994) ; E. Kraft, Moskaus griechisches Jahrhundert : Russisch‑griechische Beziehungen und metabyzantinischer Einfluss 1619‑1694 (Stuttgart : Franz Steiner, 1995) ; W. von Scheliha, Russland und die Orthodoxe Universalkirche in der Patriarchatsperiode 1589‑1721 (Wiesbaden : Harrassowitz, 2004), and the documents in С.М. Каштанов, отв. редактор, Россия и греческий мир в XVI веке [S.M. Kashtanov, ed., Russia and the Greek World in the 16th c.], vol. 1 (M. : Nauka, 2004) ; Б.Л. Фонкич, Греко‑славянские школы в Москве в XVII веке [B.L. Fonkich, Greek‑Slavic Schools in Moscow in the 17th c.] (M. : Iazyki slavianskikh kul´tur, 2009) ; В.Г. Ченцова, Икона Иверской богоматери (Очерки истории отношений греческой церкви с Россией в середине XVII в. по документам РГАДА) [V.G. Chentsova, The Iveron Mother of God (Sketches from the History of the Relations of the Greek Church with Russia in the Middle of the 17th Century Based on the Documents from RGADA)] (M. : Indrik, 2010) ; Н.П. Чеснокова, Христианский Восток и Россия : политическое и культурное взаимодействие в середине XVII века (По документам Российского государственного архива древних актов) [N.P. Chesnokova, The Christian East and Russia : Political and Cultural Interaction in the Middle of the Seventeenth Century (Based on the Documents of the Russian State Archive of Ancient Acts)] (M. : Indrik, 2011) ; N. Chrissidis, An Academy at the Court of the Tsars : Greek Scholars and Jesuit Education in Early Modern Russia (Dekalb, IL : Northern Illinois University Press, 2015) ; Y. Boycheva, éd., Routes of Russian Icons in the Balkans (16th‑early 20th Centuries) (Seyssel : La Pomme d’Or, 2016), etc. Important contributions are published in the series Россия и Христианский Восток [Russia and the Christian East] (Moscow) and in the journal Каптеревские Чтения [Readings in Honor of N.F. Kapterev].

8 Many recent studies continue the traditional focus on the political and national aspects of religion : S. Plokhy, The Cossacks and Religion in Early Modern Ukraine (Oxford‑New York : Oxford University Press, 2001), but see also Л. Довга, Система цінностей в українській культурі XVІІ століття : на прикладі теоретичної спадщини Інокентія Ґізеля [L. Dovha, The Value System in Ukrainian Culture of the 17th Century : The Case of the Theoretical Heritage of Inokentiy Gizel´] (Kyiv‑Lviv : Svichado, 2012), and Н. Яковенко, У пошуках Нового Неба : Життя і тексти Йоаникія Ґалятовського [N. Iakovenko, In Search of New Heavens : Life and Texts by Ioanikii Galiatovskyj] (Kyiv : Krytyka, Laurus, 2017).

9 A pioneering work in this field should be considered Л. Павловћ, Култови лица код Срба и Македонаца. Историјско‑етнографска расправа [L. Pavlović, Cultic Figures Among the Serbs and Macedonians. Historico‑Ethnographic Discussion] (Smederevo : Narodni muzej, 1965). See also Fl. Curta, “How to Do Things with Saints : On the Iconography of St. Mercurius’ Legend,” Revue Roumaine d’Histoire 34 (1995) : 109‑129 ; G. Valtchinova, “‘Visages nationaux’ du culte de Sainte Parascève/Petka d’Epivatos : une approche historico‑anthropologique,” Études Balkaniques, 2 (2000) : 96‑111 ; Idem, “Le transfert des reliques de Sainte Paraskeve (Petka, Paraschiva) de 1641 : Témoignages de deux personnages religieux contemporains,” Revue des Études Sud‑Est Européennes, 47 (2009) : 39‑54 ; P. Guran, ed., L’empereur hagiographe. Culte des saints et monarchie byzantine et post‑byzantine (Bucharest : New Europe College, 2001) ; I. Biliarsky, R.G. Păun, ed., Les cultes des saints souverains et des saints guerriers et l’idéologie du pouvoir en Europe Centrale et Orientale (Bucharest : New Europe College‑CRIS, 2007) ; С. Марјановић‑Душанић, Свети Краљ. Култ Стефана Дечанског [S. Marjanović‑Dušanić, Saint King. The Cult of Stefan Dečanski] (Belgrade : Clio, 2007) ; И. Гергова, Е. Мутафов, ed., Герои. Култове. Светци [I. Gergova, E. Mutafov, ed., Heroes. Cults. Saints] (Sofia : Institut za izledvane na izkustvata BAN, 2015) ; R.G. Păun, ed., Histoire, mémoire et dévotion. Regards croisés sur la construction des identités dans le monde orthodoxe aux époques byzantine et post‑byzantine (Seyssel : La Pomme d’Or, 2016). Researchers interested in this topic have now at their disposal an excellent work tool : K. Ivanova, Bibliotheca Hagiographica Balcano‑Slavica (Sofia : Akademično Izdatelstvo “Prof. Marin Drinov”, 2008).

10 See, however, E. Bakalova, “La vénération des icônes miraculeuses en Bulgarie. Aspects historiques et contemporains d’un pèlerinage,” Ethnologie française, 31, 2 (2001) : 261‑274 ; Idem, “La vénération des reliques dans le Sud‑Est européen”, Ethnologie française, 37, 1 (2007) : 73‑82 ; Idem, A. Lazarova, “The Relics of St. Spyridon and the Making of Sacred Space on Corfu : Between Constantinople and Venice,” in A.M. Lidov, ed., Hierotopy. The Creation of Sacred Spaces in Byzantium and Medieval Russia (M. : Indrik, 2006), 434‑465 ; Idem, “The New Jerusalem of St. Gerasimos of Cephallonia,” in A.M. Lidov, ed., New Jerusalems. Hierotopy and Iconography of Sacred Spaces (M. : Indrik, 2009), 500‑519. Some of Elka Bakalova’s contributions are now collected in E. Бакалова, Култът към реликвите и чудотворните икони. Традиции и съвременност [E. Bakalova, The Cult of Relics and of Miraculous Icons. Traditions and Modernity] (Sofia : Akademično Izdatelstvo “Prof. Marin Drinov”, 2016). See also V. Barbu, “Systèmes de représentations populaires du culte marial dans les Pays Roumains (xviiexviiie siècle)”, in M. Crăciun, O. Ghitta, ed., Church and Society in Central and Eastern Europe (Cluj‑Napoca : European Studies Foundation, 1998), 387‑399 ; Idem, “Imago Virginis. Essai d’anthropologie religieuse sur les représentations miraculeuses de la Vierge aux Pays Roumains”, Studii şi Materiale de Istorie Medie, 19 (2001) : 39‑60 ; И. Гергова, Чудесата на Пресвета Богородица в културата на Българското възраждане [I. Gergova, The Miracles of the Most Holy Mother of God in the Culture of the Bulgarian Renaissance] (Sofia : Omophor, 2012).

11 See, for instance, R.G. Păun, “Reliques et pouvoir au xviiie siècle roumain. Le dossier du problème,” Revue des Études Sud‑Est Européennes, 39 (2001) : 63‑73 ; Idem, “Mémoire d’un jour, mémoires d’un siècle : espaces et vécu du pouvoir sous l’Ancien Régime”, New Europe College Yearbook. GE‑NEC Program (2004‑2005 ; 2005‑2006 ; 2006‑2007) : 361‑399.

12 Among the exceptions, one should take into account the memoirs of the priest Synadinos ; see Conseils et mémoires de Synadinos, prêtre de Serrès en Macédoine, ed. P. Odorico et al. (P. : De Boccard, 1996), which includes a very useful overview on the ecclesiastical organization during the Ottoman period : S. Petmézas, “L’organisation ecclésiastique sous les Ottomans,” p. 487‑570. See also J. Strauss, “Papasynadinos de Serrès ou l’homo ottomanicus du xviie siècle”, in M. Anastassiadou, B. Heyberger, ed., Figures anonymes, figures d´élite : pour une anatomie de l’Homo ottomanicus (Istanbul : Isis, 1999), 35‑61 ; E.A. Zachariadou, “Glances at the Greek Orthodox Priests in the Seventeenth Century,” in V. Constantini, M. Koller, ed., Living in the Ottoman Ecumenical Community. Essays in Honour of Suraiya Faroqhi (Leiden‑Boston : Brill, 2008), 307‑316.

13 Several such attempts must be mentionned here : M. Cazacu, “Moines savants et popes ignorants dans le monde orthodoxe post‑byzantin,” in D. Iogna‑Prat, G. Veinstein, ed., Histoires des hommes de Dieu dans l’islam et le christianisme (P. : Flammarion, 2003), 147‑176 ; B.‑P. Maleon, Clerul de mir din Moldova, secolele XIV‑XVI [The Saecular Clergy in Moldavia, 14th‑16th c.] (Iaşi : Universitatea “Al.I. Cuza,” 2007). See also M. Kiel, Art and Society of Bulgaria in the Turkish Period. A Sketch of the Economic, Juridical and Artistic Preconditions of Bulgarian Post‑Byzantine Art and its Place in the Development of the Art of the Christian Balkans, 1360/70‑1700 : A New Interpretation (Assen : Van Gorcum, 1985) ; R. Gradeva, “The Church in the Life of Sofia Citizens, 15th to 18th Century (Preliminary Notes),” in G. Valtchinova, ed., Religion and Boundaries. Studies from the Balkans, Eastern Europe and Turkey (Istanbul : The Isis Press, 2010), 47‑79.

14 A good example is D.P. Hupchick, The Bulgarians in the 17th Century : Slavic Orthodox Society and Culture under Ottoman Rule (Jefferson, NC : McFarland, 1993). See also T. Суботин‑Голубовић, Српско рукописно наслеђе од 1557. године до средине XVII века [T. Subotin‑Golubović, The Serbian Manuscript Tradition from 1557 until the Middle of the 17th c.] (Belgrade : SАNU, 1999) ; Al. Ofrim, Cheia şi psaltirea : imaginarul cărţii în cultura tradiţională românească [The Key and the Psalter : The Imagery of the Book in Traditional Romanian Culture] (Piteşti : Paralela 45, 2001).

15 The classic work on this topic is A. Argyriou, Les Exégèses grecques de l’Apocalypse à l’époque turque (1453‑1821). Esquisse d’une histoire des courants idéologiques au sein du peuple grec asservi (Thessaloniki : Hetaireia Makedonikōn Spoudōn, 1982). See also G. Koutzakiotis, Attendre la fin du monde au xviie siècle. Le messie juif et le grand drogman, trans. D. Morichon (P. : Association Pierre Belon, 2014) ; A. Timotin, “La littérature eschatologique byzantine et post‑byzantine dans les manuscrits roumains,” Revue des Études Sud‑Est Européennes, 40 (2002) : 151‑166 ; Idem, Profeţii bizantine şi postbizantine în Ţările Române (secolele al XVII‑lea‑al XIX‑lea) [Byzantine and Post‑Byzantine Prophecies in the Romanian Lands, 17th‑19th c.] (Bucharest : Academiei, 2015) ; O. Olar, “Prophecy and History. Matthew of Myra († 1626), Paisios Ligaridis († 1678) and Chrysanthos Notaras († 1731)”, in Păun, ed., Histoire, mémoire et dévotion, 365‑388.

16 See Ν. Πίσσης, “Τροπές της ‘ρωσικής προσδοκίας’ στα χρόνια του Μεγάλου Πέτρου [N. Pissis, Twists of the ‘Russian expectation’ in the Age of Peter the Great],” Μνήμων, 30 (2009) : 37‑60 ; Idem, “Aποκαλυπτικός λόγος και μεσσιανική προσδοκία. Χρήσεις και λειτουργίες από τη βυζαντινή στην οθωμανική περίοδο [Apocalyptic Discourse and Messianic Expectation. Uses and Functions from the Byzantine to the Ottoman Period],” in Στ. Ζουμπουλάκης, ed., Η μεσσιανική ιδέα και οι μεταμορφώσεις της. Από την Παλαιά Διαθήκη ως τους πολιτικούς μεσσιανισμούς του 20ου αιώνα [St. Zoumpoulakis, ed., The Messianic Idea and its Transformations. From the Old Testament to the Political Messianisms of the 20th c.] (Athens : Artos Zois, 2011), 339‑359 ; Idem, “Χρησμολογία και ρωσική προσδοκία [Prophetic Literature and Russian Expectation],” in Σλάβοι και Ελληνικός Κόσμος. Πρακτικά Α’ Επιστημονικής Ημερίδας Τμήματος Σλαβικών Σπουδών [Slavs and the Greek World. Proceedings of the First Scientific Workshop of the Faculty of Slavic Studies] (Athens : Pelekanos, 2015). 149‑168 ; V.G. Tchentsova, “L’eschatologie byzantine dans la pensée historique à la cour d’Alexis Romanov : Paisios Ligaridès, Nicolas le Spathaire et Francesco Barozzi,” in P. Gonneau, E. Rai, ed., Écrire et réécrire l’histoire russe d’Ivan le Terrible à Vasilij Ključevskij (1547‑1917) (P. : Institut d’Études slaves, 2013), 41‑51.

17 R. Creţeanu, “Traditions de famille dans les donations roumaines au Mont Athos,” in E. Stănescu, N.‑Ş. Tanaşoca, ed., Études byzantines et post‑byzantines, vol.  1 (Bucharest : Academiei RSR, 1979), 135‑151 ; P.Ş. Năsturel, Le Mont Athos et les Roumains. Recherches sur leurs relations du milieu du xvie siècle à 1654 (Rome : Pontificium Institutum Studiorum Orientalium, 1986) ; P. Odorico, “Le prix du ciel : donations et donateurs à Serrès (Macédoine) au xviie siècle,” Balcanica, 27 (1996) : 21‑44 ; R.G. Păun, “Dévotion et solidarités communautaires dans la principauté de Moldavie au xviie siècle”, in M. Crăciun, O. Ghitta, ed., Church and Society, 266‑283 ; Idem, “La Valachie et le monastère de Chilandar au Mont Athos. Nouveaux témoignages (xvexvie siècles),” Medieval and Early Modern Studies for Central and Eastern Europe, 2 (2010) : 137‑184 ; Idem, “Mount Athos and the Byzantine‑Slavic Tradition in Wallachia and Moldavia after the Fall of Constantinople,” in Vl. Stanković, ed., The Balkans and the Byzantine World before and after the Captures of Constantinople, 1204 and 1453 (Lanham, ML – Boulder – New York – London : Lexington Books, 2016), 117‑163 ; L. Cotovanu, “Le diocèse de Dryinoupolis et ses bienfaiteurs de Valachie et de Moldavie. Solidarités de famille et traits identitaires multiples (xviexviie siècles),” in P. Zahariuc, ed., Contribuţii privitoare la istoria relaţiilor dintre ţările romane şi Bisericile răsăritene în secolele XIV‑XIX [Contri­butions Concerning the History of the Relations Between the Romanian Lands and the Eastern Churches, 14th‑19th c.] (Iaşi : Universitatea “Al.I. Cuza”, 2009), 253‑254 ; Idem, “Qu’on prie pour moi là‑bas et ici. Donation religieuse et patriotisme local dans le monde orthodoxe des xviexviie siècles,” in Păun, ed., Histoire, mémoire et dévotion, 207‑256 ; M. Kuyumdzhieva, “On the Interrelations between Wallachia and Bulgarians during the 17th Century : Benefactors and Beneficiaries,” Revue des Études Sud‑Est Européennes, 54 (2016) : 151‑170. See also Chr. Stavrakos, The 16th Century Donor Inscriptions in the Monastery of the Dormition of the Virgin (Theotokos Molybdoskepastos). The Legend of the Emperor Constantine IV as Founder of Monasteries in Epirus (Wiesbaden : Harrassowitz, 2013).

18 See, for instance, Ал. Фотић, Света Гора и Хиландар у Османском царствy XV‑XVII век [Al. Fotić, Mount Athos and Hilandar in the Ottoman Empire, 15th‑17th c.] (Belgrade : Balkanološki Institut SANU, 2000) ; Φ.Π. Κοτζαγεώργης, Η Αθωνική μον Αγου Παλου κατ την οθωμανικ περοδο [Ph.P. Kotzageorgis, The Athonite Monastery of Saint Paul during the Ottoman Period] (Thessaloniki : University Studio Press, 2002). See also the PhD thesis by Η. Κολοβός, “Χωρικοί και μοναχοί στην οθωμανική Χαλκιδική (15ος‑16ος αι.) [E. Kolovos, Peasants and Monks in Ottoman Halkidiki (15th‑16th c.)],” Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, 2000.

19 From the recent bibliography devoted to these topics, see D. Wendebourg, Reformation und Orthodoxie. Der theologische Briefwechsel zwischen der Leitung der württembergischen Kirche und dem Ökumenischen Patriarchen Jeremias II. in den Jahren 1574‑1581 (Gottingen : Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1986) ; C. Davey, Pioneer for Unity. Metrophanes Kritopoulos (1589‑1639) and Relations between the Orthodox, Roman Catholic and Reformed Churches (London : British Council of Churches, 1987) ; L.V. Charipova, Latin Books and the Eastern Orthodox Clerical Elite in Kiev, 1632‑1780 (Manchester : Manchester University Press, 2006) ; I.‑Al. Tudorie, “Cu frică s‑au temut acolo unde nu era frică.” Istoria dialogului teologic dintre anglicanii nonjurori şi Biserica Răsăriteană (1716‑1725) [“They Were in Great Fear, Where There Was No Fear.” The History of the Theological Dialogue between the Anglican Non‑Jurors and the Oriental Church (1716‑1725)] (Sibiu : Presa Universitară Clujeană, 2012).

20 B. Skinner, The Western Front of the Eastern Church : Uniate and Orthodox Conflict in 18th‑Century Poland, Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia (DeKalb, IL : Northern Illinois University Press, 2009). See also R. Nedici, Formarea identităţii confesionale greco‑catolice în Transilvania veacului al XVIII‑lea : Biserică şi comunitate [The Formation of the Greek‑Catholic Confessional Identity in Eigtheenth‑Century Transylvania. Church and Community] (Bucharest : Universitatea Bucureşti, 2013).

21 See, among others, M.S. Flier, “The Iconography of Royal Procession : Ivan the Terrible and the Muscovite Palm Sunday Ritual,” in H. Durchhardt, R.A. Jackson, D. Sturdy, eds., European Monarchy. Its Evolution and Practice from Roman Antiquity to Modern Times (Stuttgart : Franz Steiner, 1992), 109‑127 ; Idem, “Breaking the Code. The Image of the Tsar in the Muscovite Palm Sunday Ritual,” in Idem, D. Rowland, eds., Medieval Russian Culture, vol.  2 (Berkeley – Los Angeles – London : University of California Press, 1994), 213‑242 ; D. Rowland, “Biblical Military Imagery in the Political Culture of Early Modern Russia. The Blessed Host of the Heavenly Tsar,” in the same volume, 182‑212. Important contributions on these topics are to be found in A.M. Lidov, ed., New Jerusalems.

Haut de page

Pour citer cet article

Référence électronique

Paul Bushkovitch, Nikolaos A. Chrissidis et Radu G. Păun, « The Lands of Orthodoxy in The Seventeenth Century », Cahiers du monde russe [En ligne], 58/3 | 2017, mis en ligne le 01 juillet 2017, Consulté le 07 décembre 2019. URL :

Haut de page


Paul Bushkovitch

Yale University,

Articles du même auteur

Nikolaos A. Chrissidis

Southern Connecticut State University,

Radu G. Păun

Centre d’études des mondes russe, caucasien et centre‑européen, CNRS‑EHESS, Paris,

Haut de page

Droits d'auteur

© École des hautes études en sciences sociales

Haut de page