Rus Articles Journal


They lifted important branches of urban craft on higher level, having won deserved glory the products. Armenians were intermediaries in trade between Lviv and the East, providing to the city a supply of rare east industrial products and products. The work and an initiative Armenians won to themselves a foreground in the history of Lviv .

Famous Ukrainian scientist, academician I. P. Kripyakevich.


When the prince Lev, the son of the founder of Lviv Danila Galitskogo, in the XII century defined the place to each national community in the Galitsky hail, Armenians got its northern part. Armenians created compact pass - an autonomy and topped it with a spiritual symbol: Armenians built the street of the same name - Armenian and built here in 1363 the Armenian Apostolic Church (now - a monument of architecture of the European value). Directed a social life of this east community Voight * and the Council of Elders into which 12 richest citizens entered. In 1407 in Lviv where about 4 thousand inhabitants lived, there were only 63 Armenian families owning parts or the whole houses. But thanks to enterprise talent, Armenians to whom on a sort trade and crafts were written quickly enough went beyond geographical limits of the small autonomy in Lviv: having broadened both the sphere of administrative influence, and business geography. The Lviv nationality was a gold key to earnings of money and according to strengthening of the social status. Every year it was accepted by more than three tens strangers. It was for this purpose necessary to take “immovable“ root in Lviv: to buy the room or the house. However for Armenians only it, “stone“, there was not enough guarantee. They had to provide to the magistrate making the decision on nationality, also the royal letter. High support of the head of state and own real estate opened gate to “the city right“ which gave the important privilege - an opportunity to trade. And trade was the main tool for accumulation of the capital and strengthening of own importance. Then with trade there lived 16% of the population of Lviv. In 1484 Armenians had in Lviv 19 shops, at Ukrainians - 3, at Poles - 2. In 1589 from 38 rich shops 22 belonged to Armenians, 8 - to Catholics, 6 - to Ukrainians. By then the Armenian shops went beyond a close framework of the street and were located in east part of Rynok Square.

Captain of a caravan . Wholesale foreign trade with emphasis for import was the most profitable. Considering genetic linkages in the east, language skills, customs and flexible diplomatic receptions, Armenians in this sphere of business had uncontested cards - Blanch. Therefore when for a campaign behind goods the caravan was formed, the Armenian was its conductor, as a rule. The caravan contained from three tens to hundred carts. Each merchant had on several vehicles and took with himself several servants. Behind goods purchasers went to Turkey, Persia, Armenia, Moldova, Hungary, Bulgaria, Naddnepryansky Ukraine, Russia. The range of the imported goods was very wide: beginning from carpets and spices and finishing with skins and live cattle. Dealers, worrying about profitability, did not do the single courses. For export carried house cloths, zinc ware, knives, braids, sickles, a ploughshare, etc. Here is how the Lviv historian Vladislav Lozinsky describes the organization of caravans: “The Armenians leaving Lviv were going to Krivchitsakh, and here the family and friends with the assistance of numerous citizens said goodbye to them. The caravan consisted of big camp of carts which delivered to merchants together with horses professional Fermanagh. In a caravan the Armenian whom called “a caravan - bashy“ was always senior, and travel in the Turkish regions continued so far, it had the power over a caravan almost absolute as the captain in the high sea. About the cost of goods of a caravan it is possible to judge by such example: the property of only one merchant Zachariah Ivashkevich made: 34 bales - for 9000 ducats, a saffron - for 740 ducats, 150 carpets - for 775 ducats, belts brusky - for 340 ducats, 60 caps - for 3000 ducats and a roll of silk - for 1050 ducats. The caravan campaign proceeded several years, and its return was considered as a holiday about which messengers at the top of the voice reported: “Caravan all right! “ Such reaction was natural as travel to foreign lands was equated to a military campaign and was considered as business of personal valor.

Ways trade are inscrutable . To minimize overhead costs, helmsmen of a caravan counted its route with accounts in hands. Because prime cost of goods depended even on the scale of the city in which it was bought: for example, the batch of the Tatar goods acquired in “megalopolis“ was assessed with duty from calculation - 3 pennies from hryvnia, and for similar trade operation in the smaller settlement from hryvnia calculated only 2 pennies. If the Lviv merchants planned to realize cloth rolls in Voloshchina, then it could be done only by postava (wholesale) in the main town - Suceava or to carry goods transit to Hungary and Bessarabia. Transportation through Moldova of martens, the melted silver, wax and horses threatened the merchant with bankruptcy and failure of deliveries before the customer. As the Moldavian owner had the prime right to buy these goods so much how many his soul will wish. The remains were assessed with duty of several types: main in Suceava and boundary in other cities, and also on the different trade ways. Besides, it was necessary to make local payment where something was bought or on sale. Armenians quickly reacted to any changes in an environment of the international market, using, except economic lobbist levers. For example, by 1421 they, having lost from - for civil war and the internal conflicts the market of Tataria, achieved royal permission to trade in the Polish regions.

Merchant classes. Development of trade was stimulated with the special status of medieval Lviv: it was the city - a warehouse, a certain logistic center. It meant that the merchant passing through Lviv had to offer all the goods for open sale. And only what remained after two-week trade it could carry further. For streamlining of process of trade in 1441 at the Lviv magistrate the department of translators led by the senior - tolmachy was founded. In it 12 people, mainly the Armenians owning Turkish, Persian, Greek, valakhsky (Moldavian) languages worked. Without this educated class of the intermediaries paying for the privilege every year a tax in city treasury there was no sale of goods and the conclusion of contracts. According to the Lviv rules of trade, each visitor the merchant had to address the translator and to declare the brought goods and those which plans to buy. Ignoring of this compulsory procedure threatened with confiscation of goods. The informed intermediary provided the information on goods to local merchants. Except intermediaries, the merchants consisted of two classes. The richest merchants forming a brotherhood (congregation) with the elective senior at the head treated the first. They had at Rynok Square own market under a roof which closed for the night like Krakow Sukennits. The market contained 40 shops that corresponded to the number of members of congregation. Shops were hereditary, and they were allowed to be sold. If the exclusive shop was offered for sale, then for it merchants of the second category - not less prosperous people competed. However their trade was limited to certain types of goods and was retail.

A bull-calf - on a barrel. As the market of foreign currency was not created and on it different monetary units “plied“, in trade operations the Armenian merchants resorted to several forms of calculation. The simplest was monetary. But if there was not enough hard coin, then merchants applied combined: deficiency of money was compensated by goods. Purely barter operations also were in the course. In Moldova, in particular, the Armenian merchants exchanged the goods for local cattle, morocco, valakhsky wine which were fixed assets of the address (the main monetary goods). Information on it is in debt record which the Lviv merchant Samuil Doktorovich gave in 1620 to Zerik Popovic from Suceava. In the document it is written down that Popovic owed it the considerable sum “for 2 shocks of morocco in which there were 720 skin“. Often it was more favorable to pay off live bull-calves, than to resort to services of professional moneychangers, we will tell in Moldova where from - for lack of own monetary system konvertatsionny business was very developed. For example, in Yassakh the whole street of the moneychangers who earned the big capital from the craft prospered. They took 20% per annum and 4% monthly from the merchants needing a currency exchange. If there was not enough money and goods, then Armenians took or gave goods on credit. There were two main options of implementation of such operations: the person receiving goods on credit gave addressed to the seller debt record with an amount of debt and term of its repayment or creditors handed stowage record with the indication of an amount of debt, terms of its repayment and left on the security valuable things. When debtors “threw“ creditors, business came to court. During one of trials in 1621 the Lviv merchants declared that they had commercial affairs with the Moldavian, muntyansky and Turkish merchants, and for confirmation of the words showed receipts and debt records on 10 000 gold. Confiscation of goods and property was an effective remedy against impudent debtors. For example, at the sales agent - the debtor Lviv merchant Milkop Hadzelvich creditors detained in the territory of goods on 25 000 gold over time. The merchants working according to branched logistic schemes had to involve teams of authorized representatives in their service. Except direct purchase of goods at fairs and the markets, these intermediaries concluded forward and future contracts. Such registration of a trade exchange was convenient both for the supplier, and for the buyer. Because the first obtained a guarantee for sale of the goods that it was especially important for perishable goods. At the same time the seller was insured from fluctuation in prices and could count on the guaranteed profit. The contract provided to the buyer delivery of consignments of goods in a certain quantity and in the stipulated terms. It was especially important for the exhibition trade happening in certain days. The guilty person had to compensate material damage for violation of terms of the contract or answer in court.

Gold craft. the Source for filling of shops and caravans goods. But to receive a national quota in shops, Armenians, as well as in trade business, had to resort to lobbist receptions. They used force of gold or as one of burgomasters of Lviv sincerely admitted, the Armenian by origin Bartolomey Zimorovich, “caught fish gold rods“. Therefore, as a rule, during the Polish period Armenians had big privileges, than at radical Russinians. For example, in 1654 the king Jan Casimir issued the decree that Armenians, except two old, can found three more cloth shops and sell a cloth not only postavam (wholesale), but also elbows that was still forbidden them. Allowed Armenians trade in the houses in wine, honey, beer and vodka, and also to make these drinks. And in addition, except 73 houses which they owned on city streets allowed to buy Armenians 10 more stone houses at Rynok Square. It is more than that, in each professional shop could be two masters - Armenians. But in Lviv craft branches where Armenians did not need quotas as had no competition developed. In the XVII-XVIII centuries they monopolized expensive jeweler craft. And even Armenian Bedro Zakharevich was a court jeweler of the Polish king Jan III Sobesky. In the workshop located directly in the royal stone house at Rynok Square, masterly Bedro remade even sabers of the Italian masters with which work it was not happy his majesty. As in a dressing, production of morocco, art of production of the silver and zolototkany belts brought by Armenians from the East they had also no

equal, the power allowed them to create exclusive shops. In particular, since 1620 Armenians organized the shop of safyannik. And as rigid national regulations did not extend to nonconventional shops, these structures gradually accepted also masters of other nationalities and over time turned into international. According to archival data, in the first half of the XVII century, (the greatest period of blossoming Armenian trade and craft) in city boundaries more than 600 Armenians and - lived 1500 in the suburb.

The merchant - the artist. One of the richest families in Lviv. In the XVII century she owned the trading house having branch in Constantinople. The enterprise status was confirmed by presentable property attributes. One and a half centuries Nikorovicham belonged the Black stone house at Rynok Square (the famous architects Pyotr Barbon and Pavel Rimlyanin took part in a construction), which still is an example of inhabited Renaissance architecture. The facade of the house is laid out “diamond“ rusty, the portal and windows are decorated with a stone carving. Portals and window openings in an interior are even more magnificently decorated. Kings were accepted in the house of the merchant and banker Hristofor Bernatovich who operated customs of East Galicia. It reached such wealth that the king Vladislav IV applied to it for a credit to the amount of 100 000 ducats. After “capital“ work the Armenian businessmen were able to have a rest. For example, the merchant Bogdan Latinovich living in the Venetian stone house (it the Venetian consul and the merchant Antonio Massari at Rynok Square built), liked to sing satirical couplets in the most unexpected places. Once during a fair in Yaroslav of this barokkovy Lviv batyar fined for it “kupletirovanny hooliganism“, having qualified it as an insult of honor and dignity of city advisers. Other merchant, Hristofor Zakhnovich blessed with the art gift and the authorized deputy of a tsekhmistr of the Lviv painting shop took part in registration of one of altars of the Armenian church and in off-duty time drew pictures. Attribute it a historical cloth “The hetman Bogdan Khmelnytsky refuses a siege of Lviv on November 8, 1655“. Hristofor Zakhnovich had enough impressions to create such epic work of art: he, the skillful translator from east languages, was an ambassador three times in Bogdan Khmelnytsky`s camp when that with the army stood under walls of Lviv. Then to Lviv for big money, and in particular merchant, it was succeeded to pay off from storm - to save the city from destruction and business in it.

The power - the best business . Several centuries passed until work and money which Armenians skillfully were able to earn brought them the power, highest in the city. In 1648 the Armenian by origin Bartolomey Zimorovich was elected the burgomaster of Lviv (1597 - 1677). Further he several times won elections of the head of the Council of the city. Bartolomey`s father, Ozimko, created to sons (Bartolomey had a brother Shimon Zimorovich - the talented poet) good conditions for start. According to Bartolomey, the head of the family “the work turned many boulders into Saints, thanks to him the part of the city became fire-resistant, and the marble decorated with its inscriptions could be met in many cities“. From 23 years Bartolomey began to work in the Lviv magistrate. It quickly rose up a career ladder: at first it was chosen raytsy (the member are glad), later received the title “outstanding and nice sir“ which, in particular, allowed to stand for diet. Rada as administrative body exercised “police“ supervision in the city, distributed lands, leased city to Yimshchestvo, entered duties and determined their size, approved all civil property agreements, solved disputes which did not need attraction to business of witnesses, approved elections Tsekhmistrov, etc. Serious powers and privileges did the power of that time by not less profitable business, than today`s. Though rayets did not earn a reward for performance of the duties as his position was honourable, but he also did not pay any taxes on the real estate: neither royal, nor city. Moreover, everyone rayets had the lawful share in profits of Lviv. At are glad, for example, there was a tradition: to make gifts to the children of rayets marrying from profits of the city. In the middle of the XVII century, for example, rayets make the decision that expenses on marriages should not exceed 60 zloties on one newlywed. Rayets were not afraid of charges of corruption as the tradition of “earning“ of money reached a capital imperious Olympus. In city books flickres from figures of “bribes“ which the magistrate presented to the king and his court. “The custom to hand to the king was during each arrival a gift money. Therefore the rayetsky government ordered to Russinians to bring together 3000 zloties on the king“, - the outstanding Ukrainian historian of the XIX century Denis Zubritsky writes.

Not in money happiness. Bartolomey Zimorovich organically combined Multidimensional burgomistersky activity with poetic exercises and historical researches. For the first collection of satirical verses and lyrical songs “Life of Cossacks Lisovsky“ which he wrote still in 23 - summer age, occupying the lower step in the Lviv magistrate, Bartolomey Zimorovich presented to the Lviv petty bourgeoises and patricians the poem “Monument from the Turkish War“ where he sang of a victory of Cossacks in fight with Turks near Hotin. Within forty years Bartolomey Zimorovich investigated history of native Lviv which he described in Latin in chronicles “Threefold Lviv“. From 1202 to 1633 years the author devoted this first history of the city of Lviv to the colleagues - “the most noble husband, to misters family of the senate Lviv“. Bartolomey Zimorovich was an active character of the historical events recorded in the chronicle. Actually on its management of the city the siege of Lviv troops of Khmelnytskyi in 1655 when the burgomaster personally directed defense of Lviv dropped out, having described these events in the collection of verses “The new Russian idylls“ which published under a name of the brother who died in young, 20 - summer (on others sources - 25 - summer) age subsequently. And in 1672 Bartolomey Zimorovich had to organize defense of the city again - now from Turks and Tatars. But this time, even for decisive money - 80 thousand gold ducats, were not succeeded to pay off from conquerors. And velmozhny Armenians Gabriel Bernatovich and Yakov Yaskevich together with seven more prosperous Lviv residents were forced to go in hostages to the enemy. Gabriel Bernatovich managed to return from the Turkish bondage over time, but sick and exhausted. And soon he died.

A fragment from Bartolomey Zimorovich`s chronicles “Threefold Lviv“.

“K_lka rem_snik_v - kushn_r_v, yak_ at svo§kh maysternyakh shk_ra obroblyal, zvernulisya z pozovam even to Mar_aburgu (Malborka?) to korol_vsky to tribunal, ostann_m by forces that Main domagayuchis at nyy one, shchob zabrat violently fasts ³ ¿ ³ sokir z hands nayvishchy I will become Abo prinaymn_ poslabit m_ts yoga to the authority, shchob the people, a tochn_sha bagatogolov_ a strakhoviska, could you enter to the senate ³ syagnut to p_dn_zhzhya kurulny kr_set. And the nayspravedliv_shy king, znayuch, shcho zukhval_ vibrik to a natovp for poshirennya p_dstup_v prot svo§kh volodar_v º nadzvichayno d ³ º Weam, priynyavsh z I uvagoit §khn_ skarg, zalishiv v_dznak mag_stratsk_ neporushny in hands rayts_v ³ poklav p_d tochilniya kam_n, a yak prituplen_ str_l“.


Voight (polsk. w ó jt, is related to German fogt) - in the cities of Belarus, Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine founded on the Magdebourg right, in the XV-XVIII centuries chosen (usually from the prosperous population) the official who headed magistrate.



(with reductions)

the Source: kontrakty. com. ua