Viktor Tkachenko

Viktor Tkachenko

Candidate of Historical Sciences, Senior Research Fellow, Head of Research Sector of the National Historical and Ethnographic Reserve «Pereyaslav».

ORCID: 0000-0001-6741-3430

DOI: 10.17721/2522-4611.2019.39.16


Abstract. In the article the archival materials of the Institute of Art Studies, Folklore Studies and Ethnology named after them are considered, analyzed and published. M. T. Rylsky NAS of Ukraine are connected with the customs and ordinances of spring religious holidays in Podillya. There are a lot of information on Easter eggs in the archival files.

The methodological basis is the general scientific principles and methods of research. Among them – problem-chronological, search, analysis and synthesis, generalizations that allowed investigating this issue and identify certain rituals characteristic of this region.

The purpose of the article is to analyze the archival collections of documents which cover or provide information on Easter eggs of Podillya, the production of Easter eggs, their use in ritual and to publish the original sources for replenishing the source and historiographical base.

Easter ceremonies and the role of Easter eggs in them are usually of great interest. After all, the use of the symbol of the revival and resurrection of eggs-Easter eggs is closely interwoven with magical actions, beliefs and ritual customs. It was these materials that came from the 1920's to the Ethnographic Commission organized by the VUAN.

In the informational materials concerning the calendar ritual, we have a lot of information about the celebration of Easter, preparation for it, the making of Easter eggs, their ornamentation and use in rituals.

At Easter, children were welcome, mainly boys, mostly native, baptized mothers, midwives, acquaintances, priests and landlords of their villages, carrying «volochylne» as gift, consisting usually of wheat crayfish and a few painted eggs. The children weal believed to be the incarnation of the spirit of grandfathers-great-grandfathers as messengers of the sky world. With childrens bypasses and the custom of the first clerk, stored in ritual part of the annual cycle is connected.

Speaking about the circumvention of the fellow villagers or Easter gretings, which did not exist in the circle, the authors write that «on the second day the children go to greet early. Having come to the hut, they greet and say three times “Christ is Risen”, and the owner answers three times “Truly Risen”. The master gives him a handkerchief, and with this he goes from house to hose until it startscalling the church».

Interesting information is given about the burial of the deceased during Easter celebrations. One of the authors notes, «those who die on Easter (righteous) go straight to heaven. Theu put for such a dead person in a coffin: a glass of wine, a half glass of vodka and a cherry tree, this is done so that in that world he would have something to eat and drink».

The materials of the people's calendar, legends, signs, beliefs, etc., which came to at the Ethnographic Commission from Grigory Judin from Vinnytsia in 1929–1930, are quite diverse and informative.

In particular, about Easter, he wrote that «they prepare for the holiday: Easter Breads, pig, or so-called: “A porridge”, or a ram, there are baked noodles (called “woman”), cooked sackcloth (jelly), crayons (called “horns”), Easter eggs».

In the use of Easter dishes clearly preach the Christian customs of our ancestors. The owner divides the sacred egg among members of his family, wishes everyone the health, joy, fulfillment of dreams.

The ritual of purifying water, like fire, goes from the depths of centuries – so our ancestors recognized the power of water and their actions caused the spring rain. Comparing these spring customs, we can conclude that the basis of the symbolic image of spring nature, with the egg means the sun – water – rain, the very ritual inspired hope for fertility, and in the figurative meaning of people – the strength, health and joy of who poured water. Similarly, vinification with words had to effect on human health. After all, the spoken word sometimes had a strong influence on the person who was addressed.

In the answers to the question about the existence and celebration of the Rakhmani Easter, we read: «They tell him that once a long time ago, people called lived rachmani, but they did not believe in God and did not know when Easter was. So, on our Easter, the shells painted eggs of the fell into the water and drove to the ramous, and then they realized that we had Easter. Rahman Easter after four Sundays».

Not known by the general public, the reviewed sources indicate the existence of Easter eggs and their use during Easter custom-ritual traditions, in the beliefs of Ukrainians in the 20's of the twentieth century in this ethnographic region.

Key words: archive, fund, unit of preservation, pysanka, crayon, rite, Podillya.

Received by the editorial board 11.09.2018


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