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“Otiosorum hominum receptacula”: Orthodox Religious Houses in Ingria, 1615–52

Pereswetoff-Morath, Alexander LU (2003) In Scando-Slavica 49. p.101-125
Abstract
The essay collects and analyses sources on the Russian Orthodox monasteries of the Swedish province of Ingria (Ingermanland). These houses have rarely been treated; their very existence is largely unknown among specialists, although they are the only Orthodox religious houses to have existed in Scandinavia before the mid-20th century, apart from those of post-1809 Finland.



On the basis of printed Swedish and Russian sources and archival materials from Stockholm, Lund and, to some small extent, Helsinki, the continuing existence of six houses (five monasteries proper and one convent) can be established; some of these have been entirely forgotten after their de facto abolition. The existence of one or two of them can only... (More)
The essay collects and analyses sources on the Russian Orthodox monasteries of the Swedish province of Ingria (Ingermanland). These houses have rarely been treated; their very existence is largely unknown among specialists, although they are the only Orthodox religious houses to have existed in Scandinavia before the mid-20th century, apart from those of post-1809 Finland.



On the basis of printed Swedish and Russian sources and archival materials from Stockholm, Lund and, to some small extent, Helsinki, the continuing existence of six houses (five monasteries proper and one convent) can be established; some of these have been entirely forgotten after their de facto abolition. The existence of one or two of them can only be inferred indirectly.



An analysis of materials from the correspondence of the king and officials in Ingria shows that the monasteries were thought necessary for the first years after the conquest of Ingria in 1617, and that there were even plans to let a local hegoumenos supervise the Orthodox church in the province. However, early on a tacit politics of letting the monasteries waste and of not allowing them to accept new novices was launched, which over time led to the end of Ingrian monasticism upon the death of the last monk in 1642 and, possibly, the abolition of the last convent in the war of 1656ミ8. In addition, monastery property was gradually confiscated or given away by the government. Even the library of the last monks’ monastery with 35 Slavonic manuscripts was confiscated, possibly with an eye to the future conversion of the Orthodox, but this collection has not been possible to trace.



There were few protectors of Orthodoxy in Ingria in the 17th century. There had been three, all allowed and to some extent privileged, under Gustavus Adolphus. The Russian nobility was one, but it was coaxed over time to adopt Lutheranism; the burghers of Ivangorod another, who gradually lost, in the 1620s–50s, the privileges granted them in 1617; the monasteries, owing to the tacit politics of the government, initiated by Gustavuys Adolphus himself, had all but disappeared by the mid-century. Their history witnesses to the gradual loss of identity and of religious symbols in the province, and thus helps understand the estrangement of the Orthodox population from Stockholm officials, which was epitomised in the conflicts of Russia and Sweden in the second half of the seventeenth century and in the Great Northern War (with “Stora Ofreden”), where the Orthodox peasantry was fairly prone to welcome the Russian invader. (Less)
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Contribution to journal
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published
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in
Scando-Slavica
volume
49
pages
101 - 125
publisher
Taylor & Francis
ISSN
0080-6765
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
bcd8f717-3033-4d5d-8163-09e14c2dfcbd (old id 130068)
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2007-07-25 11:54:37
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2018-05-29 09:49:45
@article{bcd8f717-3033-4d5d-8163-09e14c2dfcbd,
  abstract     = {The essay collects and analyses sources on the Russian Orthodox monasteries of the Swedish province of Ingria (Ingermanland). These houses have rarely been treated; their very existence is largely unknown among specialists, although they are the only Orthodox religious houses to have existed in Scandinavia before the mid-20th century, apart from those of post-1809 Finland. <br/><br>
<br/><br>
On the basis of printed Swedish and Russian sources and archival materials from Stockholm, Lund and, to some small extent, Helsinki, the continuing existence of six houses (five monasteries proper and one convent) can be established; some of these have been entirely forgotten after their de facto abolition. The existence of one or two of them can only be inferred indirectly. <br/><br>
<br/><br>
An analysis of materials from the correspondence of the king and officials in Ingria shows that the monasteries were thought necessary for the first years after the conquest of Ingria in 1617, and that there were even plans to let a local hegoumenos supervise the Orthodox church in the province. However, early on a tacit politics of letting the monasteries waste and of not allowing them to accept new novices was launched, which over time led to the end of Ingrian monasticism upon the death of the last monk in 1642 and, possibly, the abolition of the last convent in the war of 1656ミ8. In addition, monastery property was gradually confiscated or given away by the government. Even the library of the last monks’ monastery with 35 Slavonic manuscripts was confiscated, possibly with an eye to the future conversion of the Orthodox, but this collection has not been possible to trace. <br/><br>
<br/><br>
There were few protectors of Orthodoxy in Ingria in the 17th century. There had been three, all allowed and to some extent privileged, under Gustavus Adolphus. The Russian nobility was one, but it was coaxed over time to adopt Lutheranism; the burghers of Ivangorod another, who gradually lost, in the 1620s–50s, the privileges granted them in 1617; the monasteries, owing to the tacit politics of the government, initiated by Gustavuys Adolphus himself, had all but disappeared by the mid-century. Their history witnesses to the gradual loss of identity and of religious symbols in the province, and thus helps understand the estrangement of the Orthodox population from Stockholm officials, which was epitomised in the conflicts of Russia and Sweden in the second half of the seventeenth century and in the Great Northern War (with “Stora Ofreden”), where the Orthodox peasantry was fairly prone to welcome the Russian invader.},
  author       = {Pereswetoff-Morath, Alexander},
  issn         = {0080-6765},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {101--125},
  publisher    = {Taylor & Francis},
  series       = {Scando-Slavica},
  title        = {“Otiosorum hominum receptacula”: Orthodox Religious Houses in Ingria, 1615–52},
  volume       = {49},
  year         = {2003},
}