Friday, September 5, 2014


Ruthenia - The interesting history of Ruthenia! I became interested in the country of Ruthenia and the history behind it's territory when I began my genealogical research into my Eastern European heritage. You see, all of my ancestors were of Eastern European descent. On my father's side, his ancestors traced from Ruthenia and Ukraine.

Woman in Ruthenia Town Square, Bardejov, Unesco World Heritage Site
Ruthenia is a geographic and culturo-ethnic name applied to the parts of Eastern Europe populated by Eastern Slavic peoples, as well as to the past various states that existed in these territories. Today, the historical territory of Rus, in the broadest sense, is formed with part of the lands of Ukraine, Belarus, Russia, a small part of ortheastern Slovakia and a narrow strip of eastern Poland.

By the way, I originally wrote this lens in April 2006 when I was a Squidoo lensmaster newbie. The significance of that? Oh, I actually started making "niche" lenses in March 2006, starting with the Hungarian / Eastern European theme and continuing with many a lens in that particular niche. There's an interesting history behind the territory that spanned the trail of the Carpathian Mountains! The history of Ruthenia!

Photo Credit: Woman in Ruthenia Town Square, Bardejov, Unesco World Heritage Site.

region of ruthenia map

Have you heard of Ruthenia and know where it is located?
Do you KNOW where Ruthenia is located?
  1. Yes, absolutely
  2. No -- just finding out
Ornate Russian Catholic Church in This Town in the Ruthenia Section of the CountryOrnate Russian Catholic Church in This Town in the Ruthenia Section of the CountryOrnate Russian Catholic Church in This Town in the Ruthenia Section of the CountryOrnate Russian Catholic Church in This Town in the Ruthenia Section of the CountryOrnate Russian Catholic Church in This Town in the Ruthenia Section of the Country

Everything Eastern European!
Welcome to the focus on Eastern European Info by Jaguar Julie! It is a focus on Everything Eastern European in that it is an alphabetical listing of Everything Eastern European ... all the type of topics by Jaguar Julie ... your Eastern European online travel guide. I'm glad to see you!

So ... before you dropped by Ruthenia, were you familiar with this country and its rich history? Ruthenia hasn't necessarily been in the forefront of news like say maybe Hungary, Romania or Poland. Thanks for dropping by ... we hope you enjoy your journey.

Ruthenia Factoids
  • There is no ethnic or linguistic distinction between Ukrainians and Ruthenians.
  • The term was applied to Ukraine in the Middle Ages when the princes of Halych briefly assumed the title kings of Ruthenia.
  • Later, in Austria-Hungary, the term Ruthenians was used to designate the Ukrainian population of W. Ukraine, which included Galicia, Bukovina, and Carpathian Ukraine.
  • After 1918 the term Ruthenia was applied only to the easternmost province of Czechoslovakia, which was also known as Carpathian Ukraine, or by its Czech name, Podkarpatsk√° Rus [Sub-Carpathian Russia]; for the history of this area from 1918, see Transcarpathian Region.
  • Culturally, however, the Ruthenians were distinct from the Ukrainians, especially after 1596, when the Orthodox Church of the Western Ukraine entered into union with the Roman Catholic Church, and after 1649, when a similar union was effected in Hungary.
  • The Ruthenian Uniate Church of the Byzantine (see Roman Catholic Church) thus included the majority of the Ruthenians in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, while the Greek Orthodox Church was fully restored (17th cent.) in the Russian part of the Ukraine.
  • When all Ruthenians were united (1945) in Soviet Ukraine, government pressure resulted in the secession of the Ruthenian Uniate Church from Rome and its reunion with the Russian Orthodox Church.
  • In 1989 the Uniate Church broke with the Russian Orthodox Church and reestablished its ties with Rome.

Ruthenian Woman

ruthenian woman
Ruthenian woman from the former Kingdom of Ruthenia. By Augustus F. Sherman.

Throughout his tenure as a registry clerk with the Immigration Division of Ellis Island, Augustus F. Sherman systematically photographed more than 200 families, groups, and individuals while they were being held by customs for special investigations.

This image was chosen in collaboration with Ellis Island and is from the book Ellis Island Portraits 1905-1920.

It is one of Sherman's many striking portraits, which predate August Sander's cataloging efforts by several years.

Ruthenian Wedding
A large loaf, “wedding loaf,” is prepared and baked by relations and friends invited for the purpose, who sing certain customary songs while the baking is in progress.

Besides this “korowaj,” smaller loaves of the same shape are made.

From “Customs of the World” by Walter Hutchinson 1931.

Ruthenian Spring Festival
In spring, before sowing, the peasants say prayers on the field.

Tapers are burnt in a three-branched candlestick between which and the dorn are placed two loaves of bread, the symbol of their hopes.

From “Customs of the World” by Walter Hutchinson 1931.

Ruthenian Factoids

Ruthenia on - A variety of information about Ruthenia from

Maps of Eastern Slovakia - An informative website of Eastern Slovakia Genealogy Research Strategies including many maps.

Slovak and Carpatho-Rusyn Genealogy Research Pages - The Eastern Slovakia, Slovak and Carpatho-Rusyn Genealogical Research Page offers tools, resources, and information to help you search your Slovak or Carpatho-Rusyn family history and ancestry. You will also find links to a wealth of information on the area now known as Slovakia.

Carpatho-Rusyn Society - The Carpatho-Rusyn Society is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to manifesting Carpatho-Rusyn culture in the United States and supporting Rusyn culture in the Homeland in east central Europe. It works to educate Rusyns and non-Rusyns about Rusyn culture and history, and to support the development of Rusyn culture on both sides of the Atlantic.

Over the hills of Ruthenia - This book is a replica, produced from digital images of the original. It was scanned at the University of Toronto Libraries and may contain defects, missing pages or blemishes due to the original source content. The UT libraries have worked with various digital partners to provide the best possible customer experience and hope you enjoy the results.

The Russians And Ruthenians In America Bolsheviks Or Brothers - This is a reproduction of a book published before 1923. This book may have occasional imperfections such as missing or blurred pages, poor pictures, errant marks, etc. that were either part of the original artifact, or were introduced by the scanning process.

We believe this work is culturally important, and despite the imperfections, have elected to bring it back into print as part of our continuing commitment to the preservation of printed works worldwide. We appreciate your understanding of the imperfections in the preservation process, and hope you enjoy this valuable book.

The Ruthenia Feedback Zone
Drop me a note -- Ruthenia enthusiast or not. Are you researching your family’s ancestry with Ruthenian origins? Had you heard of Ruthenia before?

History: Ruthenia was originally created on Squidoo by JaguarJulie on April 21, 2006. On September 7, 2011 this lens earned the Purple Star Award for quality content. Highest lensrank ever achieved: #2,703 overall. Lens #22 in the quest for Giant Squid 100 Club Charter Member 2007.

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