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On Line Library of the Church of Greece

Georges Florovsky

Ways of Russian Theology





The sixteenth century constitutes a tragic and troubled period in the life of West Russia. It was a time of political conflict and social unrest, and also a time of religious strife, bitter  theological controversies, and factionalism. The political merger of Lithuania and Poland consummated in the Union of Lublin (1569)  1 created a new situation for the Orthodox minority under their control. Could this minority maintain its identity and continue its own cultural traditions under the new conditions? The problem was both national and religious. Poland was spiritually a Roman Catholic country, but its East Slavic citizens belonged to the Byzantine sphere. Even before West Russia became a part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania  2 and the Kingdom of Poland, its Orthodox population had been torn by the pull between Byzantium and Rome. Since 1299, when the metropolitan see "of all Russia" was transferred from Kiev to the north (and subsequently to Moscow), this region had known a constant drive for ecclesiastical autonomy. The motive was mainly political, especially after the annexation by Poland and Lithuania: a non-resident metropolitan, it was feared, might be open to the influence of an alien power. The Patriarchate of Constantinople preferred a single, undivided metropolia, and the epithet "of all Russia" was rigorously maintained in the title of the metropolitan of Moscow. True, departures from this principle were occasionally made, such as the appointment of a special metropolitan for Galicia 3 and later one for Lithuania. However, these "autonomies" never lasted long. An inclination in favor of the Roman West often accompanied this urge for ecclesiastical autonomy in West Russia. It is hardly a coincidence that shortly after his appointment, Gregory Tsamblak,  4, the first metropolitan of Lithuania should attend the Council of, Constance (1417-1418). 5 Apparently he did so at the request of  the Lithuanian princes who at that very time were negotiating with the pope for an ecclesiastical union. Certainly the eventual separation of the Orthodox Church in Lithuania from the Moscow metropolia was accomplished under circumstances peculiarly related to Rome. Isidore, who was appointed metropolitan of all Russia to the Council of Florence, turned out to be one of the strongest partisans of the "Unia" during the council's sessions. Shortly after award, the pope raised him to the rank of cardinal. When Isidore returned to his see, Moscow disavowed and rejected him, but he found acceptance in Lithuania. Unable to remain in Moscow, he retired to Rome. But the story does not end there. In 1457, the Uniate patriarch of Constantinople in exile, Gregory Mammas, 8 together with the synod of Greek bishops residing in Rome, appointed a certain Gregory as metropolitan of Kiev and Lithuania and totius Russiae inferioris, obviously with the hope that in the course of time Gregory would extend his jurisdiction to "all Russia." This Gregory was a former abbot of the St. Demetrius monastery in Constantinople and an associate of Isidore. Oddly enough, the appointment did not introduce the Florentine Union into Lithuania. Instead, Gregory seems to have sought recognition from the Orthodox patriarch in Constantinople. Wishing to preserve both connections, his successors did the same. This created an ambiguous situation. 9 The papacy distrusted this kind of divided allegiance. Early in the sixteenth century the links with Rome were broken, and henceforth the Orthodox Church in Lithuania continued in obedience to the ecumenical patriarchate alone.

The major problem, however, had not been solved. The concept of a pluralistic society was still unknown and unwelcome, and the right to religious freedom was rarely recognized and often even strongly contested. The state for the most part was "confessional, with religious non-conformity" or "religious dissent" regarded as a threat to political and national unity. Certainly this was a fundamental an inescapable issue in the United Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania: the "East Slav problem" was at one and the same time a Polish-Lithuanian problem, for it involved the integrity of the realm. Could the "Orthodox minority" remain an independent cultural unit without endangering the common cultural bond? Could "two Churches" (and that intrinsically meant "two cultures") peacefully co-exist in a single realm? Could the "Orthodox minority" be truly integrated into corporate life of the land without some agreement or at least compromise with Rome? Could the Byzantine tradition be safely allowed in a country more and more attuned to western ways of life? Here lay the crux of the problem of the "Unia." Union with Rome was inseparable from the wider problem of civil unity within the Polish-Lithuanian kingdom. In the context of the sixteenth century it was a sociological and cultural problem more than a theological one.

The rapid growth of the vast and impressive Orthodox State of Muscovy aggravated the whole situation. The Orthodox faithful in the Polish-Lithuanian kingdom could hardly fail to turn to Muscovy in times of trouble and distress. The rise and expansion of the Reformation into Lithuania and Poland proper as well as into its West Russian provinces further complicated the picture. Lutheranism did not make much headway, but Calvinism spread swiftly and triumphantly, especially in Lithuania, where it won the open support of local magnates and, at least initially, met no effective countermeasures from the Roman Catholic hierarchy. The Czech [Bohemian] Brethren, l0 exiled from their own country, also took refuge in Poland and for a time assumed a prominent role in the general "evangelical" movement. Even more conspicuous was the growth of the "New Arians," as the Antitrinitarians were commonly labeled. l l For a while Poland served as one of the centers of the movement on the European continent.

In general the country became a shelter for all kinds of religious exiles persecuted and prosecuted in their own lands. Poland was ironically described as a "paradisus haereticomus." Radical trends were especially dominant in the reign of Sigismund II Augustus (1548-1572). 12 The situation changed under the subsequent rulers Stephen Batory (1576-1586) 13 and especially Sigismund III of the Swedish house of Vasa (1587-1632), 14 justly called the "Jesuit king." The Roman Church finally regained control with the help of the Jesuit fathers, who were called in at the advice of the Nuncio Commendone 15 and Cardinal Stanislaus Hosius, bishop of Courland. 16 The Jesuits concentrated their efforts on education but they also succeeded in making their influence strongly felt at the Polish-Lithuanian court.

By the end of the sixteenth century, the kingdom of Poland and Lithuania was once again a Roman Catholic realm and a major stronghold of the Catholic faith in Europe. In this quickened environment the problem of "non-conformity" assumed a new urgency and gravity. The Orthodox of West Russia now found themselves between two opposing camps. For a time the greater threat of a Catholic domination brought them to the support of the Protestants in a common struggle for "religious freedom." Under the circumstances, religious freedom for the Orthodox also meant "national identity." But the alliance was more forced than voluntary, dictated as it was by politics rather than doctrine. Once their independence had been regained, incomplete as this may have been, the Orthodox ended the coalition. The achievement, however, was no simple one, and the struggle left a distinct and deep imprint.

The Orthodox Church in Poland and Lithuania was ill prepared for a militant encounter with the West. With sorrow and anguish contemporaries tell of "the great rudeness and ignorance" of the common people and the local clergy. The hierarchs were little better equipped to do battle. The Orthodox themselves deplored and exposed their low moral standards and worldliness. It was commonly complained that the bishops were more interested in politics, personal prestige, and privilege than in matters of faith or the spiritual needs of the people. A great Orthodox champion of that day, the Athonite monk Ivan Vishenskii, l7 acidly commented that "instead of theology they pursue the knaveries of men, lawyer's deceptions, and the devil's twaddle." They were, he went on, more interested in the "statutes" of the law than in the "canons" of the Church. True, Vishenskii's rhetoric is passionate, but it discloses the profound disappointment and loss of confidence that contemporaries felt in their hierarchs. Furthermore, the bishops were divided among themselves.

By the end of the sixteenth century, no longer able to withstand the external pressure, they capitulated en masse to Roman obedience. Their flocks, however, would not follow. In order for ecclesiastical union with Rome to be established, coercion and even persecution would be needed. This account, of course, can be differently construed: the bishops did not desert their flocks, rather the laity refused to obey their pastors. Whatever the case, the Orthodox community was rent and an unhappy tension divided the hierarchy from the people. The burden of the defense of Orthodoxy against an enforced union with Rome fell entirely on the shoulders of the laity and lower clergy. Their devout efforts and concerted action preserve the Orthodox faith, making the eventual canonical restoration of order possible. A major task, however, was yet to be accomplished. Orthodoxy urgently needed, and its integral preservation require a creative "reconstruction of belief," a restatement of the Orthodox faith. Such a "reconstruction" had to derive from a conscious confrontation with the West's dual challenge: Roman Catholicism and the Reformation. Could the Byzantine tradition be maintained strictly as it was, or must new forms be devised? Should Orthodoxy remain purely "eastern," or under the new conditions would it in some way have to be "westernized?" Such a task could not be accomplished in an instant. Obviously it was a program for many generations. In the process a new tension bordering on a break emerged among those who remained Orthodox. The result was an ambiguous "pseudomorphosis" of Orthodox thought, and to some extent also of Orthodox life. Even though these seventeenth century efforts by Orthodox theologians of West Russia may have ended in failure or compromise, the nobility and importance of their work cannot be obscured.

The significance of these various events can be comprehended only if set in a wider European perspective. Europe was then divided into two hostile camps, at once political blocs and confessional confederations: the Catholic league and the Evangelical alliance. The Orthodox minority in Poland and Lithuania could not escape entanglement in this larger power struggle. No political stand was possible apart from a confessional commitment, and each confessional choice carried with it a political connotation. The patriarch of Constantinople, too, was heavily involved in this political contest. Since he served both as head of a large church and as national leader of the "Christian nation" [Rum milleti] within the Ottoman Empire, he was a prominent political figure on the international scene. 18 Also of significance is the interest shown, and active part taken, in the fate of the West Russian Church by the other eastern patriarchs beginning in the last decades of the sixteenth century. However, the historical destiny of the Orthodox Church in Poland and Lithuania ultimately depended upon the outcome of the political struggle between Catholic and Protestant powers which was soon to erupt in the Thirty Years War (1618-1648). In this conflict Poland emerged as a strategic center. This explains the lively interest of the Moldavian princes in the ecclesiastical affairs of the West Russian Church and why a Wallachian prince was eventually named metropolitan of Kiev. 19 This act symbolized more than Orthodox solidarity; it also reflected a common political concern. Non-theological factors thus weighed heavily on the ecclesiastical and cultural situation of West Russia, where by the third quarter of the sixteenth century the Orthodox Church faced a severe challenge from the West, an existential challenge at once religious and cultural.




The strength of the Protestant impact on Orthodox circles in Poland and Lithuania cannot be accurately assessed. It seems to have been considerable, especially in the middle decades of the sixteenth century. And its challenge had to be met. Significantly, the first Orthodox writers in these lands to respond were two fugitives from Moscow, the hegumen Artemii and the celebrated Prince Andrei Kurbskii.

Artemii, whose dates are uncertain, was at one time hegumen of the Trinity monastery. In 1554 a council in Moscow sentenced him for alleged heresies ("certain Lutheran schisms") to confinement in the Solovkii monastery, from which he subsequently escaped into Lithuania. The record of the trial proceedings does not show any heresy. It seems that the real reason for his condemnation was his ideological allegiance. Whereas the leaders of the council belonged to the dominant Josephite party, Artemii adhered to the Transvolgan tradition. Heretics, in his view, should be exhorted rather than persecuted.

Once in Lithuania, Artemii was drawn to the defense of Orthodoxy against the inroads of Protestants and Antitrinitarians. He settled on the estate of Iurii, Prince of Slutsk, where his contacts soon included those tempted or converted by Protestant preaching. For his labors there Artemii would earn the high praise of Zakharii Kopystenskii, 20 a distinguished Orthodox thinker of the next century, who speaks in his Book of Defense of the Holy Catholic Apostolic Ecumenical Church [Palinodiia] of "this blessed monk, who with the help of God, turned many in Lithuania away from the Arian and Lutheran heresies, and through whom God dispelled the danger that all Russian people there might be perverted into these heresies."  21 Artemii's approach to dissenters was as much pastoral as polemic. His writings are notable for their humane attitude towards opponents. He deals with them in the spirit of tolerance and true evangelical charity, virtues reminiscent of the Transvolgan elders, but rare in the polemical literature of Artemii's day.

A number of Artemii's epistles have been preserved. 22 They reveal the Orthodox point of view on the issues at stake. Of special interest are two missives to Szymon Budny, an influential Calvinist preacher who later went over to Socinianism and joined its most radical wing (the non adorantes). 23 In 1562 Budny published a treatise in the Vernacular, The Justification of a Sinner Before God [Opravdanie greshnago cheloveka pered Bogom], and his Catechism [Katekhizis]. 24 He also won renown for his Polish translation of the Bible, which appeared in 1572. Budny sent his books to Artemii. They prompted Artemii's epistles, which, though vigorously attacking Budny's heresies, sought to persuade and to convert. Artemii addressed Budny as "brother" on the grounds of their "common humanity," but he made no effort to conceal his detestation of "the evil faith of false reason" to which Budny was committed. Of necessity large parts of Artemii's letters were devoted to rites and external observances, since the Protestants rejected them. But his heart was else where. Christianity was for him first and foremost an inner reality, a spiritual discipline, "the Cross in action," i.e., an ascetic exploit, the way of silence [hesychia], and spiritual concentration. Artemii was rooted in the patristic heritage. His sources were traditional: St. Basil the Great, 25 St. Isaac of Nineveh (or "the Syrian," as he is usually called in the East), 26 also the Areopagite 27 and St. John of Damascus. 28 Like St. Nil of the Sora, 29 he contended that these sacred writings should be used not by rote but with discernment. It was Artemii who first called Kurbskii's attention to the patristic sources. 30

Prince Andrei Kurbskii (1528-1583) was a distinguished military leader and statesman. Although a refugee from his own country, he readily found a place among the local nobility of Volynia where he was granted honors and privileges. It is not clear how he acquired his wide erudition. But he emerges from his famous and vehement correspondence with Tsar Ivan IV and from his History of Ivan Iir [Istoriia o Velikom Kniaze MoskovskomJ as a skillful writer, a powerful polemist, and a man of great intelligence. 31 In no sense was he only a spiteful and venomous pamphleteer bent upon voicing his passions and pleading the cause of the boyars against a tyrannical tsar. He was also a man of broad culture and an ardent supporter of the Orthodox tradition. In Moscow he had been close to the circle of Maxim the Greek 32 whom he acknowledged as his "most beloved, teacher" and whose biography he later compiled.

Disturbed by the growth of "foul heresies" in Poland, Kurbskii was no less dismayed by the negligence and indifference of the Orthodox community there: "we are inept and indolent in study and too proud to ask about that which we do not know." He sought to spread learning among the Orthodox. He urged them to return to the primary sources, to the very springs of faith and knowledge. Kurbskii had a special love for the great patristic tradition, and he voiced chagrin and irritation that the Orthodox people around him knew so little of the Fathers and scarcely read them. "Foreigners take delight in our teachers, whereas we, looking at our own, waste away with spiritual hunger." He was amazed that not all the patristic writings had been translated into Church Slavonic, and he expressed dissatisfaction with existing translations. Accordingly, he decided to translate anew.

It may appear strange that Kurbskii chose to translate the Greek Fathers from Latin texts, since for that purpose he had to learn Latin. 33 But many of the writings that interested him still remained to be published in the original, and to obtain and use all the Greek manuscripts was too difficult a task. Kurbskii himself worked from the Venetian translations. His library contained the complete works of Chrysostom, 34 St. Gregory of Nazianzus, 35 St. Cyril of Alexandria, 36 and St. John of Damascus, 37 as well as Nicephorus Callistus' Historia ecclesiastica. 38 Kurbskii had been impressed by a story told by Maxim about the zeal of Venetian scholars at work translating the Greek Fathers. 39 Apparently he also came to believe that after the catastrophe of Byzantium, those Greek manuscripts, which had been saved, were taken to Italy and stored in the libraries of Venice and Padua. 40

The fall of Constantinople was a true apocalyptic disaster for '' Kurbskii, a time when "Satan was loosed from his bonds." With Byzantium in the hands of the Infidel, he had to look to the West. Kurbskii had no sympathy for Rome, however. The Council of Florence had been, in his phrase, "a true tragedy, with evil and sad consequences." From his contacts on Mt. Athos he sought and obtained copies of the polemical writings of Cabasilas 4l and others directed against the Latins. Kurbskii's cultural horizon was typically Byzantine. Indeed, with his love of learning and penchant for study he can be properly described as a "Byzantine humanist." Patristic theology and the "wisdom of the Greeks" (i.e. Greek philosophy) were in his eyes an indivisible cultural whole. "Our ancient fathers were trained and adept, in both natural philosophy and the sacred Scriptures." Kurbskii consequently sought to combine study of the Fathers with that of the classical philosophers. Of the latter, he mainly read Aristotle (Physics and Ethics), probably under the influence of St. John of Damascus and Cicero, from whom he derived a Stoic conception of natural law. 42

Kurbskii drew up an ambitious program of translation: all the Fathers of the fourth century. As part of the project, he gathered around him for classical studies a band of young scholars, or baccalaurei as he styled them. And he sent a relative, Prince Mikhail Obolens to learn the higher sciences in Cracow and in Italy. It was not easy for Kurbskii to find enough people fluent in Latin who were also at home in literary Slavonic. He himself did not have complete command of Slavonic. But he was averse to translating the Fathers into the cruder colloquial. Indeed, it was probably at his suggestion that a member of the wealthy Mamonich family in Vilna 43 in 1581 published a Grammar of the Slavonic Language [Gramatika slovenskaia iazyka].

Only a small part of Kurbskii's translation project was ever accomplished. In addition to the sermons of Chrysostom, with which he began, Kurbskii managed to translate the basic works of St. John of Damascus, including the Dialectica and Defide orthodoxa and  some of his lesser writings. 44 They already existed in part, but in an archaic translation of John, Exarch of Bulgaria 45 Kurbskii checked John's text against certain Greek and Latin editions, revised it, and  added translations of the missing chapters. To Damascene's Dialectica he also appended an introduction On Logic, based on the Trivii Erotomata, published by Johann Spangenberg in 1552 and 1554 in Cracow 46 Apparently Kurbskii intended this work to be a textbook. In 1585 Kurbskii printed in Vilna a translation of John of Damascus' A Disputation between a Saracen and a Christian. But of the other Fathers, he succeeded in translating and publishing only a few  sermons and homilies. 47 To advance his dispute with the Arians (his major preoccupation), Kurbskii also compiled, and where necessary translated, several exegetical anthologies: The Interpreted Acts and Epistles [Tolkovyi Apostol'], including a special selection of Patristic texts; An Abbreviated Interpreted Book of Prophets [Sokrashchenie tolkovykh prorochestv] , which also contained Patristic commentary; 48 and an Interpreted Psalter [Tolkovaia psaltyr'] in which, in addition to the basic commentary taken from Theodoret of Cyrus 49 and from Pseudo-Athanasius, 50  he included a number of rich and apt choices from the other Fathers. In all of this work Kurbskii manifests a vital dogmatic interest and a sober and clear faith.

However modest Kurbskii's achievements were in comparison with the scale of his original plan, that he even conceived such a comprehensive scholarly program is of signal importance. The scheme itself reveals a clear conception of religious culture, grounded in the tradition of a Slavono-Hellenic culture. He opposed this to "Polish barbarism." This was no mere rhetorical phrase. The Polish language was at the time just coming into use for scholary purposes, and Polish literature was sitill in statu nascendi. In contrast, Church Slavonic literature had existed for centuries and had developed its own elaborate style and tradition. Kurbskii had reason to contend that an accurate translation into Polish from Greek or Slavonic, or even Latin, was impossible. The meaning might be rendered, but the style would be lost.

Far more than a scribe or a dry scholar, Kurbskii had a living feeling for his time. His aims have often been criticized as old-fashioned and out of date. In fact, they were prophetic. He strove for a creative renewal of the patristic tradition, a revitalization and continuation of the Byzantine heritage in the Slavic world. The future of Orthodoxy, he believed, depended upon its faithfulness to the tradition of the Fathers.




Kurbskii was not alone in his literary and educational endeavors. In the second half of the sixteenth century a number of Orthodox printing centers were established in Lithuania and Poland, most by private hands: Ivan Fedorov 51 and Petr Mstislavets 52 at Zabludov, near Bialystok, on the estate of the Chodkiewicz family (1568 to 1570); 53 Fedorov in Lvov (1573-1579, revived in 1591); Mstislavets in Vilna (1574-1576, resurrected by the Mamonich family in 1582); Prince Konstantin Ostrozhskii 54 at Ostrog in Volynia (1580-1590). 55 The basic motive for these centers was apologetical; their chief aim was to combat Protestant, and especially Arian, propaganda. For this purpose it was deemed more important to publish primary sources than argumentative works. The result was a goodly flow of liturgical manuals, devotional books, religious pamphlets, and sermons.

The most important of these printing presses was at Ostrog where through the energies of Prince Ostrozhskii a center of learning and culture had sprouted. Among the "lovers of wisdom" who gathered there were Gerasim Smotritskii, the educator, 56 Ivan Fedorov, master printer, the priests Vasilii Surazkii, author of On a United Faith [O edinoi vere], 57 and Demian Nalivaiko (brother of the famous hetman), 58 and of special fame, Jan Liatos, mathematician and astronomer. 59 Of this community at Ostrog Zakharii Kopystenskii wrote in his Palinodiia: "Here were orators equal to Demosthenes. Here were doctors well-trained in Greek, Latin, and Slavonic. Here were outstanding mathematicians and astrologers." Though an obvious exaggeration, his words indicate the strong impression, which the Ostrog enterprise left on the subsequent generation. Nor can the profound devotion to learning within the Ostrog group be denied. They cherished the same vision of a vibrant Slavono-Hellenic culture, as did Kurbskii.

The school at Ostrog was modelled on the Graeco-Byzantine pattern. Often described as a "Greek school," it was in fact a "school of three languages" [trilingue lycaeum] and of the liberal arts." Non slavonicae duntaxat linguae, sed grecarum juxta atque latinarum artium erexit palaestram." 60 Prince Ostrozhskii planned to transform his school into a full-fledged academy and thus more firmly establish Ostrog as a Slavonic-Greek cultural center. 61 His dream never materialized; moreover, the school itself managed to survive for only a few years. The plan was unrealistic for the times. A critical shortage of qualified personnel existed almost everywhere. Competent teachers were all but impossible to find, especially for the instruction of Greek. In 1583 Ostrozhskii considered hiring several Greek Uniates from the Greek College of St. Athanasius in Rome, but without success. Later he looked to Greece itself. Cyril Lucaris, the future patriarch, taught at Ostrog in 1594 and 1595. 62 Ostrozhskii also tried to educate students abroad. An interpreter at the Council of Brest, Father Kiprian, seems to have been one of these students. He studied in Venice and Padua and then stayed for a while on Mt. Athos. Ostrozhskii's success in these various endeavors was modest. Probably his entire project was too ambitious for private enterprise. Even so, the renown which the school at Ostrog gained was justified, not so much for its achievements (although these were significant), as for its noble-spirited pioneering.

From the start the Ostrog community was deeply involved in the struggle with Roman propaganda and later with that of the Uniates. 63 The reform of the calendar introduced in 1582 by Pope Gregory XIII created great agitation 64 Open resistance was strong in a number of quarters, and in Poland that resistance included some Roman Catholics. Jan Liatos of Cracow attacked it violently. Expelled from the university, he moved to Ostrog where he lent encouragement and support to Orthodox groups opposing the new calendar. (Liatos continued his campaign as late as 1603, still in Ostrog.) Another vigorous opponent of the reform was Gerasim Smotritskii, headmaster of the Ostrog school in the 1580's. A pamphlet he published in 1583 sharply denounced it. That same year the Church in Constantinople formally rejected the calendar reform and brought the dispute to an end for Orthodox peoples. In Poland and Lithuania, however, the controversy was kept alive for several more years by persistent attempts to enforce the use of the new calendar throughout the country.

Far more significant than the struggle against calendar reform, and indeed the most spectacular of all the undertakings of the Ostrog community, was the translation and printing of the great Ostrog Bible. With its publication in 1580 (reissued in 1581 with certain technical amendments), the full text of the Bible made its first appearance in Church Slavonic. The Ostrog Bible, as such, remains a landmark in Slavonic Biblical history. It abides also as a magnificent achievement in itself, a monument of scholarship, literature, and theology.

The Ostrog Bible was conceived as a polemic tool and intended for wide circulation. In the Preface, written by Gerasim Smotritskii, readers were strongly warned against those who, pretending their course could be sustained with Holy Writ, "most blasphemously dare to follow Arius in their teaching." National Bibles, of course, have been characteristic instruments of reformationists. The Polish and Czech Bibles and the Slovene Bible of Primoz Truber 65 are but a few examples. In the Russian West most Bible translation also stemmed from a Protestant milieu, specifically from Socinian and Antitrinitarian circles who based their labors on the Czech or, more often, the Polish version. Vasilii Tiapinskii 66 translated the Gospels in Belorussia from the 1572 version of Szymon Budny, while Valentin Negalevskii 67  made his edition in Volynia from the Polish Bible, which Marcin Czechowicz had published in Cracow in 1577. 68 Some of these vernacular editions are hardly more than paraphrases, with confessional bias plain in the wording of the text and, even more, in the glosses and explanatory notes. Certainly all of the translations of the Bible made in West Russia by Unitarians deviated considerably from the traditional text of the Orthodox East. This is even true of the famous Russo-Slavonic Bible of Georgii (Frantiszek) Skorina of Polotsk, printed in Prague in 1517-1520 (though never completed beyond the Old Testament). 69 Based mainly on the 1506 Bible of the Bohemian Utraquists (i.e., Calixtins), it was connected to the Hussite endeavor, if only indirectly. 70  In addition Skorina used the Latin Postillae perpetuae of Nicholas de Lyra.  71 Kurbskii was sharply critical of Skorina's translation. He lamented that it was taken "from the corrupted Jewish books" and pointed to the similarity of the Skorina edition with Luther's Bible. Probably he meant by this that both translations came from the Latin Vulgate, which in turn depended on the Hebrew text. The traditional Slavonic text, of course, was based on the Greek Septuagint.

The Ostrog Bible stemmed from a conscious and critical attempt to adhere to the Greek textual tradition. And the language of translation was to be traditional Church Slavonic, not any of the vernacular languages. The basic source for the Ostrog edition was the Gennadii Bible 72 (with some trouble obtained in a clear copy from Moscow through a Lithuanian diplomat). This text was carefully checked and revised, with many of its "Latinisms" expurgated in the process. On the initiative of Prince Ostrozhskii, new manuscripts were sought in the Slavic monasteries of Bulgaria and Serbia, in "Roman lands," and even as far away as Crete. He also appealed to the patriarch of Constantinople to send reliable and properly corrected manuscripts, as well as "people competent in the Holy Writings, Greek and Slavonic. It is clear from the Preface, however, that the editors of the Ostrog Bible were dismayed by the poor state of the manuscripts with which they worked. Too frequently the texts suffered from variations and corruptions. Still, for their time, the Ostrog scholars had rich and ample material at their disposal. They consulted the Massoretic text 73  and the Vulgate and took into consideration the new Czech and Polish versions. Then once again they checked their text against the Greek, using two printed editions: the Aldine Septuagint of 1518 (Venice) 74 and the great Complutensian Polyglot of Cardinal Ximenes, completed between 1514-1517, but not released until 1522.  75

With all its obvious imperfections, the Ostrog Bible offers a more accurate and reliable text than the famous Sixtus Clementine version of the Vulgate (1592).  76 Modern editions of the Slavonic Bible are still essentially based on the text of the Ostrog Bible. The task which confronted its translators and editors was enormous; their accomplishment noteworthy. It apparently took this competent team of scholars three to four years to complete the enterprise. Technical expertise was rendered by Ivan Fedorov, who already had a number of printing projects to his credit, including the introduction of the art of printing to  Moscow. Probably more than anything else, the creative achievement of the Ostrog Bible testifies to the flowering of a cultural and theological renaissance among the Orthodox of West Russia toward the end of the sixteenth century. Of even greater significance, the advent of this Bible reflects a living and unbroken connection with the Byzantine tradition.




Prince Konstantin Ostrozhskii (1526-1608), founder of the Ostrog community, and later the monk Vasilii, was a controversial figure. He was above all a politician and a diplomat, if not a statesman. His approach to religious problems was pragmatic and cultural, rather than theological. As a native of Lithuania, Ostrozhskii was more "westernized" than his friend Prince Kurbskii, who despite his virulent distaste for political and cultural trends in Moscow, and however much his scholarship relied on Latin texts and western publications, remained even in Polish exile an adamant Muscovite and ardent Graecophile. Of the two, Ostrozhskii's cultural horizons were probably the broader, but there was less coherence in his views. He was prone to adjustment and compromise, and his politics frequently vacillated. Without question a staunch defender of Orthodoxy, at the same time he played a role in preparing the way for the Unia, which gave cause to those who would brand him a sympathizer.

In a sense Prince Ostrozhskii can be regarded as the first East Slavic "ecumenist." He had a deep interest in the reconciliation of all Christian communions in Poland and Lithuania, if only to secure order in the realm. He pleaded with Christians to cooperate and to live in honest co-existence. Even his personal position was curiously involved. Though a firm adherent of the Orthodox Church, Ostrozhskii was married to a Roman Catholic and kept close family connections with Calvinists and Unitarians. His eldest son, Prince Janusz, was baptized according to the Catholic rite, and of his other children, only one remained Orthodox, but even he had a Roman Catholic wife. 77

The ecumenical interests of Ostrozhskii raised suspicion in several quarters. He was first of all accused of excessive sympathy for the Socinians, who themselves claimed that inwardly he shared their convictions: "quamvis religionem Unitariam, quam in corde amplectebatur no sit professus, Unitariorum tamen Fautor et Patronus fuerit."  78 It is true that Ostrozhskii admired their educational system and commitment to cultural values. And he did not hesitate to turn to them for help. On behalf of the Orthodox he commissioned the Socinian Motovila  79 to write a refutation of the famous book of Peter Skarga, On the Unity of the Church of God under One Pastor [O iedosci kosciola Bozego pod iednym pasterzem y o Greckim od tey iednosci odstapieniu, z prezest oroga y upominaniem do narodow ruskich przy Grekach stojacych, Vilna, 1577]  80 with which the Jesuits launched their literary campaign to win the Orthodox in Poland to union with Rome. 81 Kurbskii was incensed with Ostrozhskii's act. Motovila was to him "a deputy of the Antichrist" and a follower of the impious Arius, 82 Photinus, 83 and Paul of Samosata. 84 "Christian leaders have gone to such extremes of insolence and foolishness ", he decried, "that not only do they shamelessly harbor and nurture these poisonous dragons in their homes, but they employ them as defenders and assistants. And what is even more astonishing, they summon them to guard the spiritual Church of God against satanic spirits and commission them to write books against the half-Christian Latins." Probably Kurbskii's intransigence was shared by only a few, with many more grateful to Ostrozhskii for also enlisting "heretics" in the Orthodox cause. To hesitate or to linger out of scruple was too high a risk in this struggle.

Ostrozhskii's "ecumenical" overtures were not limited to Protestants; they reached to Roman Catholics as well. On a number of occasions he conferred with the famous Jesuit missionary Antonio Possevino, 85 as he did with the Papal Nuncio  Bolognetti. 86 Both reported to Rome that he was about to be converted. Ostrozhskii brought along to these deliberations a number of laymen and clergy and when the matter of Church unity came up even the king, Stephen Batory, was included. It was at this time also that Ostrozhskii considered obtaining Greek Uniates from St. Athanasius College in Rome to teach at Ostrog, even though according to his plan the Ostrog school was to remain a stronghold of strict Orthodoxy. Later he persuaded Adam Pociej (Potiy), 87 future Uniate metropolitan and the real architect of the Uniate Church in Poland, to take holy orders, and then, even though Pociej's Roman leanings were no secret, sponsored his promotion to the episcopate.

Ostrozhskii actually had his own scheme for reunion with Rome and was prepared to go to Rome to confer with the Pope. But when union finally came, Ostrozhskii did not follow, and at the Council of Brest convened in 1596 to promulgate reunion, he led the forces of opposition which disrupted the proceedings. For years there after he was recognized as a leader of the Orthodox resistance movement which sprang up in the western lands. Ostrozhskii was not inconsistent in these acts. His vision of unity was quite different from that negotiated at the Unia. Everything there had been accomplished by the local bishops acting clandestinely and alone. This directly countered Ostrozhskii's plan for a thorough and common discussion of all the issues involved and prior consent from the Churches of Moscow and Moldavia. When in the aftermath of the Council, the Orthodox Church was outlawed in both Poland and Lithuania, Ostrozhskii mounted a fervent campaign to get the decision rescinded. Basing his struggle on the right and necessity of "religious freedom," he once again found himself drawn toward the Protestants, who for some time had suffered discrimination under the law and whose threat to Orthodoxy was now eclipsed by Roman Catholicism.

Before long the Orthodox and the Protestants sought to join forces in their common struggle for religious freedom. The only hope for success lay in concerted action. Having confederated their own forces in 1570 through the Sandomierz Confession [Confessio Sandomiriensis], 88 the Protestants in 1595 at the end of the Synod of Toruri took up the issue of closer  cooperation with the Orthodox. Ostrozhskii, in a letter, warned this body that a Roman-Orthodox union was in preparation and proclaimed his own solidarity with the Protestants. He declared that, in his opinion, the Orthodox were distant from the Romans but close to the Evangelicals (i.e., Calvinists). 89 In 1599 a joint conference met in Vilna, with the Orthodox represented by a small group led by Ostrozhskii. 90  The immediate order of business was to formulate a common policy in the struggle for religious freedom. But once the two groups were together, the idea of unity readily arose. To this the clerical members on the Orthodox side proved reticent and evasive, if not openly hostile. Chief spokesman for union in the Protestant delegation was Simon Theophil Turnovskii, president of the Czech [Bohemian] Brethren in Poland. 91 He argued that under certain conditions Protestants and Orthodox could unite, and cited the negotiations held in 1451-1452 between the Calixtins of Prague and the Church of Constantinople, which ended in agreement. 92

Following the Vilna conference, certain Protestants drafted a memorandum, which prominently listed points of agreement between Evangelicals and Orthodox and placed items requiring further discussion in an appendix. This was forwarded to Constantinople. Although the Orthodox did not share in this action, Ostrozhskii seems to have sympathized with it. Meletius Pigas, patriarch of Alexandria and locum tenens of the ecumenical throne, acknowledged receipt of the missive, 93 but, reluctant to interfere in Polish affairs, he kept his reply evasive and noncommittal. Meletius did authorize his exarch, Cyril Lucaris, then residing in Poland, to discuss the proposal at local levels. Apparently nothing was done. All in all, it was utopian to expect that an Orthodox-Evangelical union could be formed to counter the Brest Union. Still, the whole episode was of sober significance for the future. During the negotiations between the Protestants and the Orthodox, the question of union was posed in terms, which defined "unity of faith" as common opposition to the Latin faith. As a consequence the Orthodox found themselves in a position where their own standpoint had to be worked out within the frame of  the western tension: Rome or Reformation.

Although the plan of doctrinal agreement put forward at Vilna received no further development, Orthodox-Protestant cooperation continued. Orthodox polemists made extensive use of Western anti-Roman literature, especially on the question of papal supremacy, where they regularly utilized arguments advanced at the great Reformation councils of Basel and Constance. 94 Quite popular was De republica ecclesiastica, the famed book of Marco Antonio de Dominis (1566-1624), one time Roman Archbishop of Spalatro, who left the Church of Rome and then for a period held a position in the Church of England. In translation, his book was widely circulated in manuscript form among Slavs of West Russia. 95 But perhaps more typical of the polemical literature adopted by Orthodox writers at this time was the Apokrisis, published in 1597 under the name of Christopher Filalet (Philalethes). It was intended as a reply to Skarga's book on the Council of Brest. Claiming that his book was a translation, which probably fooled only a few, the author disguised himself (in a manner frequent among Socinians who came to the defense of Orthodoxy) behind a Greek literary pseudonym, even though it seems his identity was known to many contemporaries. Current scholarship has established, though not with final certainty, that he was neither an East Slav nor an Orthodox, but the Calvinist Martin Broriski, a Polish diplomat who for a while served as Stephen Batory's secretary. 96 He was also an active participant in the meetings between Evangelicals and Orthodox and a close friend of the Ostrozhskii family. 97 If indeed Broriski was the author of the Apokrisis, then it is highly plausible that Ostrozhskii for a second time was instrumental in enlisting a Protestant to counter Roman Catholicism "on behalf of the people of the Greek religion." 98 The author's aim in the Apokrisis was to analyze the proceedings of the Council of Brest from a legal and canonical point of view. Readily discernible in his work, at least in key parts, is the influence of Calvin's Institutiones Christianae. 99 Protestant bias is most obvious in the emphasis on the rights of the laity in the Church and the minimal authority of the bishops. A somewhat similiar bent characterizes the closing section of the treatise, devoted to the papacy. Here the author made extensive use of a new and voluminous book by the Dutch scholar Sigrandus Lubbertus (1556-1625), entitled De Papa Romano (1594), in which the pope is identified with the Antichrist. 100 Apparently Lubbertus' book, too, had wide circulation among the Orthodox, with several important writers putting it to use: Meletii Smotritskii, 101 in his Lamentation for the One Ecumenical Apostolic Eastern Church [Threnos, 1610] ; Zakharii Kopystenskii, in his Pali nodiia; Stephen Zizani, in his "Sermon of St. Cyril of Jerusalem on the Anitchrist and his times." 102

The impact which Protestant literature had on the Orthodox faithful should not be overstressed. However, a "taint" of Protestantism was thenceforth to remain a part of West Russian mentality, and even the much stronger Latin influence of later years did not really eradicate it. Far more dangerous, and of greater significance, was the habit which Orthodox writers acquired of approaching theological problems in a western frame of reference. To refute Roman Catholicism is not necessarily to strengthen Orthodoxy, and many Protestant arguments against Catholicism are compatible with Orthodox principles. Nevertheless Orthodox polemists unwittingly or carelessly employed them, with the result that on a number of matters Protestant views imperceptibly took hold. There is, of course, a corollary historical explanation. Patristic literature was scarce, a circumstance compounded by the general unreliability of contemporary Greek literature. Greek theology was at the time passing through a crisis. Greek scholars themselves were studying at schools in the West, in Venice, Padua, Rome, or else in Geneva or Wittenburg. They were more often at home in modern western innovations instead of the traditions of Byzantium. In the sixteenth century they were usually of Protestant hue, whereas somewhat later they took on a Latin tint. Suffice it to name the Orthodox Confession (1633) of Cyril Lucaris, a document which was Calvinist in spirit and in letter. And the works of Lucaris were known and appreciated in West Russia. Perhaps this infusion of Protestantism was inevitable. Whatever the case, under western influence the ancient ideal of Orthodox culture began to dim and blur.

There was, however, another solution to the problem of Rome: to abandon all "foreign learning" and to abstain from discussion and debate. This viewpoint or, more properly, mood, also spread in western lands during the same period. Its greatest exponent was Ivan Vishenskii (d. before 162S). Little is known of his biography, except what can be gleaned from his numerous writings. Born in Galicia, Vishenskii apparently received little formal schooling. He must have left for Mt. Athos when quite young, and he stayed there for the rest of his life. (Once, in 1606 it seems, he returned briefly to his native land, but finding himself no longer at home there he left again for Athos.) Vishenskii referred to himself as a simpleton, a "poor wanderer" [goliakstrannik] and in similar vein countered the intellectual sophistications of the West with a "dove-like simplicity" and "foolishness before God." He should not, however, be taken too literally. Careful analysis of his writings suggests that he was fully abreast of the philosophical and literary movements current in Poland and in West Russia.

V. Peretts  103 states that Vishenskii was "endowed with literary skill and verve." He was without question a writer of talent, forceful, direct, frequently harsh or rude, but always original and to the point. His prose is full of vigor and humor, occasionally scaling to prophetic heights. Vishenskii probably learned his manner of argument from the Fathers; certainly the Areopagitica left an obvious imprint on his style. He was deeply rooted in Byzantine soil, though not from lack of wider learning. His central emphasis was on tradition and this in its most elementary sense: go to Church, obey the canons and the rules, do not indulge in argument. Vishenskii rejected "pagan wisdom" [paganskaia mudrost'] and "ornate reason" [mashkarnyi razum] without qualification. He opposed all scholasticism in its style, method, and substance and rejected all "refinements of  the rhetorical craft" and all "external and worldly sophistications." A true monk, he had neither taste nor love for the polish and gloss of civilization. He addressed himself to lowly men: "O thou simple, unlearned, and humble Rusine, hold fast to the plain and guileless Gospel in which there is concealed an eternal life for thee."  To pagan sophistry Vishenskii opposed the simplicity of faith, the "humblywise Octoechos."104 yet in his own way he, too, could be rhetorical. "Is it better for thee to study the Horologion,  l05 the Psalter, the Octoechos, the Epistles and the Gospels, and the other books of the Church, and to please God in simplicity and thereby to gain eternal life, or to grasp the meaning of Aristotle and Plato and be, called a philosopher in this life and then go to Gehenna?" Vishenskii is  here at the heart of the matter. The threat of the Unia could be overcome by inner effort alone, by a renewal and revival of spiritual life. Orthodoxy could not triumph by debates or resolutions, but only through ascetic faithfulness, humble wisdom, and intense prayer.

The difficulty with Vishenskii's position is that in the given historical realities it was impossible to avoid debate. The issues posed demanded response or else the Orthodox risked leaving the impression that they had nothing to reply. Reticence or silence was not a permanent alternative. Opponents needed to be faced, their challenges met; and the encounter had to be at their level and on their terms. Victory would not come by refraining, but by prevailing. In actual fact, Vishenskii himself did not entirely shrink from intervention. It is enough to mention his Epistle to the Apostate Bishops (1597 or 1598). 106 Still his writing is everywhere concerned with the fundamental predicament: the worldliness of the contemporary Church and the lowering of the Christian standard. Vishenskii's approach to the problem was thoroughly ascetical. The worldliness that threatened the Church he saw as coming from the West, and its antidote was to hold fast to the tradition of the East. His was not simply a call for passive resistance. It was an invitation to enter battle, but a battle of the spirit, an "unseen warfare."




The Unia began as a schism and remained a schism. In the apt phrase of the modern church historian Metropolitan Makarii (Bulgakov), "the Union in Lithuania, or rather in the West Russian lands, originated with an athema." 107 The Unia was fundamentally a clerical movement, the work of a few bishops, separated and isolated from the community of the Church, who acted without its free and conciliar consent, without a consensus plebis, or as was lamented at the time, "secretly and stealthily, without the knowledge [porazumenie) of the Christian people." Thus it could not but split the Orthodox Church, sunder the community of faith, and estrange the hierarchy from the people.

This same pattern was followed at a later date in other areas, in Transylvania and in the Carpatho-Russian region of Hungary. The result everywhere was a peculiar and abnormal situation: at the head of Orthodox people stood a Uniate hierarchy. The hierarchs viewed their submission to Roman authority as a "reunion of the Church," but in reality the Churches were now more estranged than ever.  Whereas following its own logic, the new Uniate hierarchy took the resistance of the people to be uncanonical disobedience to established  authority, the rebellion of an unruly flock against its lawful shepherds, the Orthodox believers, on their part, saw the resistance to the hierarchy, their so-called "disobedience," as the fulfillment of Christian duty, the inescapable demand of loyalty and fidelity. "Neither priests, nor bishops, nor metropolitans will save us, but the mystery of our  faith and the keeping of the Divine commandments, that is what shall save us," wrote Ivan Vishenskii from Mt. Athos. And he forthwith defended the right of the faithful Christians to depose and drive out any apostate bishop, "lest with that evil eye or pastor they go to Gehenna." This was hazardous advice. But the situation had become fraught with ambiguity and complexity.

The Unia in Poland not only ruptured the Eastern Church, it also severed the Roman Catholic community. By creating a second holy body under papal authority, it originated a duality within the western Church. Full "parity of rites" was never achieved or recognized, nor did the two flocks of common obedience ever become one - indeed, this was not called for in the original agreement. The tensions between East and West now entered into the life of the Roman Catholic Church. As they spread, they intensified. Thus sociologically, the Unia proved a failure. The only way out of this impasse, or so some came to believe, was through the gradual integration (i.e., "Latinization") of the Uniate Church. This tendency was reinforced by yet another sentiment. Many from the start had viewed the Eastern rite as "schismatic," even if within Roman allegiance. They felt it was an alien accretion, a tactical concession to be tolerated for strategical reasons, but destined to give way to full integration into a unifoim, that is, Latin, rite. Hence the subsequent history of the Unia in the Polish-Lithuanian State came to be dominated by just this urge for uniformity, this desire for "Latinization."

It has been contended by some on the Roman Catholic side that this development was normal, a sign of organic life and the proof of vitality. In a sense, this is true. But whatever the case, it must be recognized that the Unia in its mature form was quite different from that conceived in 1595, and even from that nurtured by the early Uniate leaders. It has also been argued that such a "Byzantine" institution could hardly have survived in a state which by principle and aspiration was wholly western, all the more so after several East Slavic regions went over to Muscovy and the more "intransigent" Orthodox groups were removed from Polish care. All these are but mild and euphemistic ways of saying that in principle Unia meant "Polonization," which is what happened historically. This was, of course, one of the original aims. The interests of the Polish State called for the cultural and spiritual integration of its Christian people, and it is for this reason that the state first encouraged and then supported the Unia. Indeed, that it survived at all was due to state intervention. But politically, too, the Unia was a failure. It promoted resistance rather than integration and added to the "schism in the soul," a "schism in the body politic." The other primal impulse for Unia (apparently the moving idea of Roman Catholic missionaries such as Possevino) sought a true "reunion of the Churches," embracing the whole of the Russian Church and, if possible, all of the Eastern Churches. This distinctly religious aspiration was dealt a fatal blow by that which was achieved politically and culturally, by precisely what has been praised as the proof of success or vitality.

The Union of Brest remained as it began, a "local arrangement" for the most part generated and preserved by reasons and forces of non-theological character. The Union of Brest did not arise out of a popular religious movement. It was the composition of several Orthodox bishops then in charge of Orthodox dioceses in the Polish-Lithuanian State together with authorities of the Roman Church and the kingdom of Poland. Once it became known that the act would not command the agreement or sympathy of the full body of the Church, it could only continue as a clandestine affair. Seemingly fearful that further delay might subvert the whole enterprise, Bishops Pociej and Terletskii (Terlecki) left for Rome. l08 But news of their secret plot became public, and even while they were away open protest against the Unia began in the Church. The Council of Brest was convened on their return. It was designed for the solemn promulgation of a fait accompli, not for discussion. But before the members could gather, a split appeared in the ranks of the Orthodox. Two "councils" resulted, meeting simultaneously and moving to opposed resolutions. The "Uniate Council" was attended by representatives of the Polish Crown and the Latin hierarchy, together with several hierarchs from the Orthodox Church. It drew up an instrument of Orthodox allegiance to the Holy See, which was then signed by six bishops and three archimandrites. The "Orthodox Council" was attended by an exarch of the ecumenical patriarch (Nicephorus), 109 an emissary from the patriarch of Alexandria (Cyril Lucaris), three bishops (Luke, the metropolitan of Belgrade, 110 Gedeon Balaban, 111 and Mikhail Kopystenskii 112), over two hundred clergy, and a large number of laymen assembled in a separate chamber. It disavowed the Unia and deposed those bishops in compliance, announcing its actions in the name and on the authority of the ecumenical patriarch, who held supreme jurisdiction over the metropolia of the West Russian lands. The decisions of the "Orthodox Council" were denounced by the Uniate bishops and - of greater import - repudiated by the Polish State. Henceforth all resistance to the Unia was construed as opposition to the existing order, and any writing critical of the act was branded a criminal offense. Exarch Nicephorus, who presided over the "Orthodox Council," was prosecuted and sentenced as an agent of a foreign state. 113 a final measure, it was declared that the "Greek faith" would not be recognized by law. Those who remained faithful to Orthodoxy would no longer be simply stigmatized as "schismatics" but also harassed as "rebels." What to this point for the state had been essentially a problem of "religious unity" was instantly transformed into a problem of "political loyalty." As for the Orthodox believers, they had now to prepare a theological defense of their faith and, more urgently, to fight for legal recognition.

The struggle of the Orthodox against the enforced Unia was above all a manifestation of the corporate consciousness of the people of the Church. At first the main centers were Vilna and Ostrog. But soon Lvov came to the fore, to be joined at the beginning of the seventeenth century by Kiev. Of more importance was the change in the social strata upon which the Orthodox apologists could rely for sympathy and support. Whereas in the days of Kurbskii and Ostrozhskii the Orthodox cause was mainly supported by the high aristocracy [szlachta], in the next generation noble families experienced an exodus into the Unia or even into the Roman Catholic Church. Study in Jesuit schools frequently precipitated or promoted the exodus, and cultural integration into Polish high society invariably demanded it. Another pressure was the exclusion of "schismatics" from all important positions in the civil service, or for that matter in any walk of life. To replace the aristocracy at the front lines of  Orthodox defense townsmen came forth. And with the turn of the century, the Cossacks, or more specifically the so-called "Fellowship of Knights of the Zaporozhe Regiment," took up the cudgels. 114 In these same years there also occurred an important institutional shift. The leading role in the defense of Orthodoxy was now assumed by the famous "brotherhoods" [bratstva], whose network soon spread over the whole of the western lands.

The origin of the brotherhoods is still obscure. Various theories have been put forth, but none is fully convincing. The most sensible view suggests that they began as parochial organizations, and at some time in the troubled years preceding the Unia, probably in the 1580's, transformed themselves into "corporations for the defense of the faith," whereupon they received ecclesiastical confirmation. The brotherhoods of Vilna and Lvov had their "statutes" approved by Patriarch Jeremiah in 1586, 115 and then, unexpectedly, received royal charters. 116 In internal affairs the brotherhoods were autonomous. Some also enjoyed the status of stauropegia; that is, they were exempt from the jurisdiction of the local bishop, which in effect placed them directly under the rule of the patriarch of Constantinople. The first brotherhood to receive such status was Lvov, followed by Vilna, Lutsk, Slutsk, and Kiev, and still later by Mogilev. The Lvov brotherhood for a while even had the patriarch's authority to supervise the actions of their local bishop, including the right to judge him as a court of final instance. Any decision of guilt rendered by the brotherhood bore the automatic anathema of the four eastern patriarchs. This unusual arrangement can only be explained by the abnormality of the situation, wherein the least dependable element in the West Russian Church was the hierarchy. Still, to grant such power to lay bodies was a daring venture. No doubt this unprecedented growth of lay power, in all likelihood with concomitant abuses, was a strong factor inclining some bishops towards Rome, in the belief that Rome might succeed in restoring proper authority. The conflict and estrangement engendered between hierarchy and laity in the aftermath of the Unia bred an unhealthy atmosphere deeply  affecting the religious consciousness of both. Indeed, no period in the life of the West Russian Church was more trying than that between the Council of Brest and the "restoration" of the Orthodox hierarchy by Patriarch Theophanes of Jerusalem in 1620, by which time the Orthodox episcopate was almost extinct. 117  The misunderstandings and clashes of these years between brotherhoods and local Church authorities were so numerous and serious that even the re-establishment of a canonical hierarchy could not soon restore order to the Church. And the continuance of troubles was merely further assured when the Polish State stubbornly refused to recognize this new hierarchy.

The restoration of a canonical hierarchy was preceded by extended negotiations between Patriarch Theophanes IV and various circles in West Russia, where he stayed for two years. He then went to Moscow, where he had occasion to discuss the situation with the highest authorities there, Patriarch Filaret and Tsar  Mikhail. 118 On his way home to Jerusalem, Theophanes again visited Poland. His contacts this time included the Cossacks, then led by Hetman Peter Konashevich-Sagadaichny, an alumnus of the Ostrog school, one of the founders of the Kiev brotherhood school, and a man of genuine cultural bent. 119  moves that were hardly unpremeditated, Theophanes on two occasions arranged to consecrate bishops, creating in all six new hierarchs, among them the metropolitan of Kiev.  Several of the new bishops were known for their learning: Iov  Boretskii, former headmaster of the schools at Lvov and Kiev, now made metropolitan of Kiev; l20 Meletii Smotritskii, an alumnus of the Vilna Academy, who also had attended several German universities; 121 and Ezekiel Kurtsevich, son of a princely family and for a time a student at the University of Padua. l22 In spite of such qualifications, the new Orthodox hierarchs found themselves at once engaged in a bitter struggle for authority. The Uniate Church and the Polish State both contested the consecrations, claiming that Theophanes was an intruder, an imposter, and even a Turkish spy. Only in 1632, just after the death of King Sigismund III, was the Orthodox hierarchy able to gain from his successor, King Wladyslaw IV, the recognition of law. 123 But even then their difficulties were not entirely at an end.

The troubles with the Polish State were not the only ones the Orthodox believers faced. In general it was an untimely season, an age of internecine strife and conflict, an era of wars and uprisings. To be constructive in such conditions was not easy. It was difficult to organize systematic religious activity and to create a regular school system. It was even harder to preserve some form of calmness and clarity of thought, so indispensable to the life of the mind. Nevertheless quite a bit was accomplished, although it is still not possible to assess its full significance.

In the field of education the brotherhoods took the lead. They organized schools, set up publishing centers, and printed books. The early brotherhood schools - like the school at Ostrog - were planned on the Greek pattern. After all, the Greek population in the cities of South Russia and Moldavia was at this time quite sizeable, with the whole region serving as a major area of the Greek diaspora. 124 Contact with Constantinople was frequent and regular. Greek influence could be felt in everything, and it did not begin to fade until the end of the seventeenth century. The brotherhood school at Lvov was founded by an emigre prelate, Arsenius, archbishop of Elassona and a former student of Patriarch Jeremiah. 125 Here, after 1586, the Greek language became a salient if not the principle feature in the curriculum. Inevitably some of the nomenclature became Greek. Teachers, for example, were referred to as didascals and students called spudei. In 1591 Arsenius compiled a Greek grammar, which he published in Greek and Slavonic. Based mainly on the noted grammar of Constantine Lascaris, l26 it also drew on the manuals of Melanchthon, l27 Martin (Kraus) Crusius, 128 and Clenard of Louvain. 129 At his brotherhood school in Lvov, as also in Vilna and Lutsk, it was not unusual for the students to learn to speak Greek fluently. Nor was there a shortage of available Greek literature. The catalogues of the brotherhood libraries list whole editions of the classics - Aristotle, Thucydides, and the like. Preachers would quote from the Greek text of the Scriptures in their sermons. Everywhere Greek titles were the fashion for books and pamphlets, and in general the literary language of West Russia at that time was saturated with Greek terminology. Apparently the whole spirit of teaching as well as the ethos was Hellenic. It is also true that Latin was from the beginning a part of the curriculum at the brotherhood schools. But on the whole "Latin learning" was viewed as an unnecessary frill, or even a dangerous "sophistry." Zakharii Kopystenskii's comment was fairly typical: "The Latinizers study syllogisms and arguments, train themselves for disputes, and then attempt to out-debate each other. But Greeks and Orthodox Slavs keep the true faith and invoke their proofs from Holy Writ."

By 1615, in the same year that the famous Kiev brotherhood was founded, a colony of learned monks was in residence in the Kievan Monastery of the Caves, gathered there chiefly from Lvov by the new archimandrite and abbot Elisei Pletenetskii. 130 In 1617 the Balaban printing press 131 was brought from Striatin to the monastery, where it was put to immediate use. The chief publications were liturgical books and the writings of the Fathers, but other works and authors also merit mention. First of all there is the valuable Slavonic-Ukrainian Lexicon [Leksikon Slaveno-Rossiskii i imen tolkovanie] compiled by Pamvo (Pamfil) Berynda, a Moldavian, and printed in 1627.132 Of the original works of the Kiev scholars, the most interesting and significant is the Book of Defense of the Holy Catholic Apostolic Ecumenical Church [Palinodiia] of Zakharii  Kopystenskii, who in 1624 succeeded Pletenetskii as abbot of the Monastery of the Caves. It was composed in reply to the Uniate book, Defense of Encounter the Unity of the Church [Obrono jednosci cerkiewney, (Vilna, 1617)] by Leo Krevsa. 133 Kopystenskii sought in his study to elucidate the eastern understanding of the unity of the Church and with great artistry substantiated his argument by the Scriptures and the Fathers. From his Palinodiia and other writings it is clear that  Kopystenskii was a man of broad erudition. He knew the Fathers and was acquainted with Byzantine historians and canonists, as well as modern books on the East (e.g., Crusius' Turko-Graeciae) and had also read some Latin books (e.g., De republica ecclesiastica by Marco Antonio de Dominis and De Papa Romano by Lubbertus). Kopystenskii - like Maxim the Greek before him - quietly and soberly rejected western scholasticism. It is plain that Kopystenskii knew his material and had worked through it on his own. He was neither an imitator, nor simply a factologist, but a creative scholar in the Byzantine mold. His Palinodiia, the task of many years, is still a model of lucidity. Unfortunately, it was not published in his day and in fact not until the nineteenth century. Kopystenskii died soon after its completion. His successor at the Monastery of the Caves, Peter Mogila, was a man of quite different temperament and persuasion. He could have had no sympathy for Kopystenskii's book, for it was too direct and outspoken.

Still another name to be added to the list of early Kievan scholars whose writings were significant is that of  Lavrentii (Tustanovskii) Zizani (d. after 1627). Before coming to Kiev, he had taught in Lvov and Brest, and had published in Vilna in 1596 a Slavonic grammar and a lexis. Once in Kiev, Zizani turned his talents as a Greek expert to the translation of St. Andrew of Crete's Commentary on the Apocalypse 134 and to the supervision of an edition of St. John Chrysostom's homilies. But Zizani's main work remains his Catechism [Katekhizis]. When completed, the book was sent to Moscow for publication. There it ran into difiiculties. First it had to be translated from the "Lithuanian dialect" - as Muscovites denoted the literary language of West Russia - into Church Slavonic. But the translation was poorly done. In addition, authorities at Moscow detected grave doctrinal errors in the book. Zizani, it seems, held a number of peculiar opinions in all probability derived from his foreign sources: Protestant and Roman Catholic. He himself escaped condemnation, but the printed version of his Catechism was withdrawn from circulation and in 1627, burned. However, copies in manuscript form did survive and received wide dissemination and popularity. In the course of the eighteenth century the book was thrice reprinted by the Old Believers 135 of Grodno. Zizani, like Berynda, Kopystenskii and most of the early Kiev scholars, worked primarily in Greek and Slavonic sources, and the writings of these learned monks reflect an authentic cultural inspiration. But even as they labored a new tide was rising in that same Kievan milieu.

As the seventeenth century unfolded, Kiev began to feel more and more the impact of "Latin learning." New generations were of necessity turning to western books and with increasing frequency attending Jesuit schools, where, as if inexorably, they became imbued with the Latin pattern of study. Even Elisei Pletenetskii, in his effort to counteract the Uniate initiative of Metropolitan Veliamin Rutskii, 136 seems to have had a western model in mind when he sought to create an "Orthodox order." Under his direction, communal life at the Monastery of the Caves was restored, but on the rule of St. Basil rather than the more common Studite Rule. 137 A "Latin motif " can also be noted in some of the books published at that time by certain members of the circle at the Monastery of the Caves. On occasion this bias filtered in through tainted Greek  sources; at other times it entered directly from Latin literature. Tarasii Zemka, composer of laudatory verses and the learned editor of Kievan liturgical books, l38 made considerable use of the celebrated work of Gabriel Severus on the sacraments, which had appeared in Venice in 1600. 139 Severus' book was permeated by Latin influence, if only in the phraseology which Zemka liberally adopted. (To take an example, where Severus used "metaousiosis," or the Greek equivalent of "transubstantiation," Zemka employed the Slavonic "prelozhenie suchchestv" ["the metastasis of substances"] ). The influence of Latin thought is even more pronounced in Kirill Trankvillion-Stavrovet- skii. 140 His book Mirror of Theology [Zertsalo bogosloviia], published at the Pochaev Monastery in 1618, can be regarded as the first attempt by a Kiev scholar at a theological system. A subsequent study, Commentaries on the Gospel [Uchitel noe Evangelie, printed in 1618], is similarly concerned with doctrine. Both works reflect Thomism, and even something of Platonism. In Kiev and Moscow they were censured for "heretical errors" [ereticheskie sostavy] and sentenced to destruction. But official rejection did not hinder their spread in manuscripts or mitigate their broad acceptance in the south as well as in the Russian north. Even so, disappointed that his books were repudiated by his ecclesiastical superiors, Stavrovetskii went over to the Unia.

Yet another figure in whom a Thomist influence can be seen is Kassian Sakovich (c. 1578-1674), headmaster of the Kiev brotherhood school from 1620-1624. It is most transparent in his On the soul [O dushe], printed in Cracow in 1625. From Kiev, Sakovich went to Lublin, where he established contact with the Dominicans and attended theological classes. He later continued this study in Cracow. And finally, Sakovich, too, joined the Unia, after which he launched a virulent polemic against the Orthodox Church. In this manner, then, in the second and third decades of the seventeenth century the Roman Catholic style of theology began to penetrate into the Kievan scholarly community. The next decade, the 1630's, saw Roman Catholic domination. The shift occurred simultaneously with a change of administration at the Kiev Monastery of the Caves, when Peter Mogila became abbot.




The Unia was less an act of religious choice than cultural and political self-determination. Neither reasons of faith nor of doctrine were fundamental to the secession of the bishops. The early Uniates were quite sincere in contending that "they did not change the faith." They felt they were only transferring jurisdictions and seem really to have believed that the "Latin faith" and the "Greek faith" were identical. This aspect received considerable stress in their pamphlet literature, for example, in the Unia, or A Selection of Principal Articles [Unia, albo vyklad predneishikh ar"tikulov], published anonymously, but reputedly the work of Hypatius Pociej, l41 or in Harmony, or the Concordance of the Most Holy Church of Rome. 142 Many were equally convinced that under "Roman obedience" they could still be Orthodox. Greek Uniates, too, felt this way and made the most striking attempts to argue the case. In particular this was so for Peter Arcudius (1562-1633) in his De concordia Ecclesiae occidentalis in septem sacramentorum administratione libri septem (Paris, 1619). 143 Even more notable was Leo Allatius (1586-1669) in his De Ecclesiae occidentalis atque orientalis parpetua consensione libri tres (Coloniae, 1648). 144 Such a notion led to the stipulation in the final agreement that the Uniate Church was not to be merged with the Roman Catholic Church but would retain its own hierarchical independence and ritual. It was a clause acceptable even to a man like Ostrozhskii. He ended an opponent of the Unia, not because he perceived it to be a betrayal of faith, but because he knew the action was taken in an unlawful manner and therefore could have neither authority nor relevance for the whole Church.

Those who first turned to Uniatism seem to have been tempted by "undisturbed peace" under Roman obedience, which by implication meant the protection of Polish law. They also hoped to liberate themselves from the authority of the patriarch of Constantinople, long under the control of the Infidel Turk. Others of the early Uniates were more drawn to the splendors of western civilization and wished to partake in its riches. And there was a certain disenchantment with the East. One of the founders of the Unia, Hypatius Pociej, who became the second Uniate metropolitan, declared in a letter to the Patriarch of Alexandria Meletius Pigas: "You cannot be sure of  attaining eternal life by heading for the Greek shore. . . . The Greeks distort the Gospel. They malign and betray the Patristic heritage. Saintliness is debased, and everything has come apart or fallen into discord in the Turkish captivity. . . . Calvin sits in Alexandria, instead of Athanasius, Luther in Constantinople, and Zwingli in Jerusalem." (Presumably Pociej was referring to Cyris Lucaris and to Pigas himself, both of whom had Protestant leanings.) 145 And so Pociej chose Rome. No longer was the "wellspring of truth" [studenets pravdy] in the East, only in the West could a pure faith and a stable order be found.

As early as 1577, Peter Skarga 146 had pointed not to doctrinal differences but to the "Greek apostasy" and to the "backwardness of Slavic culture." "With the Slavonic tongue one cannot be a scholar. It has neither grammar nor rhetoric, nor can it be given any. Because of this language the Orthodox have no schools beyond the elementary which teach reading and writing. Hence their general ignorance and confusion." His judgment is harsh and wrong, though the narrowmindedness it expresses is fairly typical of the time. However  true it may be that the Polish language was still not mature enough to serve as a vehicle of learning, the same cannot be said of Church Slavonic. Skarga was unaware of the difference, or he chose to ignore it.  As he assessed the situation, the only remedy for the ignorance of the Slavs was the adoption of Latin culture. His attack did not go unanswered. Orthodox defenders such as Zakharii Kopystenskii would reply that the Slavonic tongue is kin to the language and culture of Greece, "and therefore, it is a safer and surer thing to make translations from the Greek and to write philosophy and theology in Slavonic than it is to use Latin, which is an impoverished tongue, too inadequate and too insufficient for lofty and involved theological matters." 147 Kopystenskii exaggerates as much as Skarga, only with the obverse. But the distinction they point to is a valid one.

From the outset, then, Uniatism was posed and perceived as a question of cultural determination. For Unia implied, regardless of all assurances or guarantees that the rites and customs of the East would be preserved, an inclusion or integration into western culture, or as the Germans say, a western Kulturraum. To state it badly, Unia meant religio-cultural westernization. It could only be resisted and overcome by steadfast allegiance to the Greek tradition. This was fully comprehended by those who toward the end of the sixteenth and the beginning of the seventeenth centuries rose to the defense of the Orthodox Church. It is enough to mention the eloquent vindication made by Gerasim Smotritskii in his Key to the Kingdom Of Heaven [Kliuch tsarstva nebesnago, 1584] , and by Zakharii Kopystenskii in his Palinodiia several decades later. Their concern was also shared by the founders of the brotherhood school in Kiev:

We have founded by the grace of God this school for Orthodox children, and have provided it at great sacrifice with teachers of the Slavono-Russian and Helleno-Greek languages, as well as of other subjects, in order that they not drink from the alien spring, and, having imbibed the fatal poison of the schism of the West, be inclined to join forces with the dark and dismal Romans.

The only cultural concession of the Orthodox loyalists was the supplementation of Church Slavonic with the local vernacular, the russkii dialekt. With the passage of time this dialect came into increasing literary use because the common people understood it much better than Church Slavonic. It also came into occasional use in the spoken liturgy, or so it seems from the I.enten Triodion, which was printed in Kiev in 1627.148 Thus, as the Unia and its inherent westernization spread, a concerted effort arose in Poland to defend Orthodoxy. The issue now at hand was whether, confronted by this expanding  western Kulturraum, a Slavono-Hellenic school and culture could survive. In the 1620's it was already an urgent issue; in the 1630's it  became a burning one.




In the person of Peter Mogila (1596-1647) there is something enigmatic and strange. Was he a sincere champion of Orthodoxy or a manipulative hierarch of genius? It is hard to judge. Whatever the case, that he played a decisive role in the life of the West Russian Church, and, indirectly, in the later life of the whole Russian Church is indisputable. He was the most able and powerful Church leader in Poland and Lithuania in the whole of the seventeenth century. And it is appropriate that an entire era in the history of the West Russian Church bears his name: the Mogila epoch. Son of a hospodar of Moldavia woevodich zemel' moldavskikh], 149 Mogila seems to have had from birth an appetite and talent for power. Even on the throne of the Kievan metropolia he proved more a sovereign than a pastor. Educated in the West, or, more exactly, in Poland and in a Polish fashion, Peter Mogila became in taste and habit a sophisticated and lifelong westerner. Apparently he studied at the celebrated Academy of Zamosc, founded in 1594 by Jan Zamoyski, the Grand Chancellor of Poland, l50 and seems later to have spent a short while in Holland. Upon the death of his father, Ieremia Mogila, he was taken as the ward of Chancellor Stanislaw Zolkiewski 151 and afterwards of Hetman Chodkiewicz. 152 In general while a youth Mogila, through family and friends, was closely linked to Polish aristocratic society. And in the future the sympathy and succor of Polish magnates would assure his vocational success.

In 1627, at just thirty years of age, Peter Mogila was elected archimandrite of the Monastery of the Caves. He probably aspired to this when he took monastic vows and first entered the monastery. Certainly when the post became vacant his candidacy was promoted by the Polish government. Once head of the monastery, Mogila set his own course, which sharply contrasted with that of his predecessor. This was most evident in the field of education. At the monastery Mogila decided to launch a Latin-Polish school, inevitably if not intentionally opposed to and in competition with Kiev's Slavono-Hellenic brotherhood school. His decision created great tension bordering on a riot in the city. In the words of a contemporary, Gavriil Dometskoi,  153 "There was great indignation among the uneducated monks and Cossacks: 'Why, as we were gaining salvation, do you start  up this Polish and Latin school, never before in existence?' Only with great difficulty were they dissuaded from beating Peter Mogila and his teaching staff to death." 154 But Mogila was no man to be frightened. He emerged unscathed and soon after triumphed. The brotherhood had no choice but to accept him as "an elder brother, a protector and patron of this holy brotherhood, the monastery, and the schools." Pressing his advantage, Mogila first took over the administration of the brotherhood school and then combined it with his own school at the monastery to form a "collegium" on the Latin-Polish pattern. This new institution was housed in the Brotherhood monastery. Its curriculum and organization were modelled on the lines of Jesuit schools in the country, and all new teachers were recruited from graduates of Polish schools. Isaia Trofimovich Kozlovskii, the first rector of the Kievan collegium, l55 and Silvestr Kossov, the first prefect, received their education in Vilna, at the Jesuit college in Lublin, and at the Zamosc Academy. It seems that for a while they also studied at the Imperial Academy of Vienna. In the same manner, and at the same time he was engaged in organizing the new school at Kiev, Mogila set about to form a school in Vinnitsa. l56  There is reason to believe that Mogila had plans for spreading across the region a network of Latin-Polish schools for the Orthodox, as well as for creating something like a monastic teaching order, all under the Kiev collegium. 157

Mogila was an avid and resolute westernizer. His aim was to forge the heterogeneous peoples of the western regions into a single religious psychology and inspiration, into a common culture. Attending all his plans and endeavors, mostly but the symptom of a clash between two opposed religious cultural orientations (Latin-Polish and  Helleno-Slavonic), was an intense, if submerged struggle. Mogila was not alone in his projects. His numerous allies included the whole of the younger generation, which, having passed through Polish schools, had come to regard the Latin West rather than the Slavonic-Hellenic East as its spiritual home. In a sense, this was natural and logical. Silvestr Kossov was eloquent and direct on the issue. We need Latin, he would say, so that no one can call us "stupid Rus" [glupaia Rus']. To study Greek is reasonable, if one studies it in Greece, not in Poland. Here no one can succeed without Latin - in court, at meetings, or anywhere for that matter. There is no need to remind us of Greek. We honor it. But Graeca ad chorum, Latina ad forum. Kossov's argument has logic. But the root of the matter was deeper. At one level it was a linguistic problem, but at a more profound level it was an issue of cultural setting and tradition.

For those opposed to the pressures by Mogila's followers for a Latin education there were good reasons for the suspicion that this was Uniatism. Were not the Orthodox partisans of a Latin orientation time and again in conference or negotiation with active Uniates, anticipating a compromise to which both sides could wholeheartedly adhere? Did they not more than once discuss a proposal to join all Orthodox believers in the region, Uniates and non-Uniates  alike, under the authority of a special West Russian patriarch, simultaneously in communion with Rome and Constantinople? And was not Mogila himself always promoted for this august office by the Uniate side of the talks? This was, of course, hardly without his knowledge. Rutskii, the Uniate metropolitan, did not doubt for a moment that Mogila was "inclined to the Unia." It is certainly significant that Mogila never voiced doctrinal objections to Rome. In dogma, he was privately, so to speak, already at one with the Holy See. He was quite  ready to accept what he found in Roman books as traditional and  "Orthodox." That is why in theology and in worship Mogila could freely adopt Latin material. The problem for him, the only problem, was jurisdiction. And in the solution of this problem his outlook  and temperament dictated that practical concerns would be decisive: ecclesiastical and political "tranquility" [uspokoenie] ,  "prosperity" [blagosostoianie], "good order" [blagoustroistvo]. For in the practical realm everything is relative. Things can be arranged and agreed upon. The task is one for ecclesiastical tacticians.

An early and revealing episode in Mogila's career was his friendship with one of the new bishops, Meletii Smotritskii, consecrated by Patriarch Theophanes precisely at the time of his "eastern peregrinations." Smotritskii was a learned man. Because of his Slavic grammar, published in Vilna in 1619, he occupies a place in the history of general culture. It was a remarkable achievement for its time. It can even be argued that Smotritskii was - to borrow Joseph Dobrovskii's  l58 phrase "princeps Grammaticorum Slavicorum."  When he wrote this text, he was still of a Greek orientation. In it he sought to apply the rules of Greek grammar to the Slavonic tongue. 159  As an ecclesiastic, too, Smotritskii began in the Slavonic-Hellenic camp where he was a vigorous opponent of the Unia. It is enough to point to his Lamentation [Threnos] written in 1610, which describes the sufferings of the oppressed and persecuted Orthodox flock with a skillful combination of passion and rigor. It is likely that this and similar writings led to his selection in 1620 as bishop of Polotsk. Here he ran into difficulties. First there was conflict with Iosafat Kuntsevich, Uniate bishop of Polotsk; l60 then he was troubled by doctrinal disagreements among Orthodox polemists as well as abuses in the activity of the brotherhoods. Doubts arose, so Smotritskii decided on a trip to the Near East. At Kiev, on his way to Constantinople, he visited the metropolitan and received encouragement and blessing in his plan to ask the patriarch to cancel the "stauropegia" of the brotherhoods. Smotritskii succeeded in doing so, but the rest of his eastern journey proved a disappointment. This was especially so of his meeting with Cyril Lucaris, whose Catechism Smotritskii read while in Constantinople and who not only failed to calm his doubts but heightened them all the more. By the end of his journey Smotritskii had decided to seek some rapproachment with the Uniates. Back in Kiev he shared certain of these ideas with Mogila and Metropolitan Iov,  l61 who were apparently sympathetic. After all, negotiations between the Orthodox and the Uniates, in which both seem somehow to have been involved, had been in progress since the Uniate proposal in 1623 for a joint conference to seek out agreement. Somewhat later, with apparent confidence, Smotritskii sent to Mogila and the metropolitan the manuscript of his Apology [Apologia peregrynacyi do krajdw wschodnich (Derman, 1628)]. It contained a full and vigorous presentation of his new views, and provoked no opposition. By this time, it seems since 1627, Smotritskii had gone over to the Unia, though secretly, in order, as he put it, that "pallio schismatis latens," he might better promote the Uniate cause among the Orthodox. However, his clandestine labors did not escape the attention of Isaia Kopinskii, bishop of Peremyshl and future metropolitan. 162

In the spring of 1628 Smotritskii formulated a six point memorandum, wherein, after noting the differences between Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy, he insisted that they were not of sufficient magnitude or of such a character as to justify division, and submitted this to a conference of Orthodox bishops at Grodko, in Volynia. Once again, it seems, no open objection to his views was voiced. Hence a joint meeting with the Uniates was scheduled for the autumn of 1629. However, well before, at a plenary council of Orthodox bishops and clergy in August 1628, opponents of Smotritskii's ideas stepped forth in force. He was compelled to recant his Apology, which was condemned as heretical and then publicly burned. Within weeks, however, Smotritskii had, by means of a protestation, withdrawn his disavowal, and by means of various pamphlets embarked on a polemical exchange with his accusors. Leading the opposition were members of the older Orthodox generation, among whom suspicions arose about Mogila and the metropolitan, since neither had called for a recantation or condemned its withdraw. They could hardly have done so. Smotritskii's increasing empathy with the Unia had been of interest to Mogila for some time, and there were reasons for Smotritskii to suspect that his Unia plans would have the sympathy and cooperation not only of Mogila but of the metropolitan as well. What disagreement there was between Mogila and Smotritskii was not about ends but means. And the entire episode was all the more confused by an external pressure, referred to in Uniate literature as "the fear of the Cossacks."

Peter Mogila's election as metropolitan of Kiev also transpired under peculiar circumstances. With the death of King Sigismund III, the Orthodox, in April, 1632, seized the occasion of the election of a new king to wrest from the Polish electoral Diet certain "points of pacification for the Greek religion" [Punkty uspokoeniia religii grecheskoi], among them legalization of the Orthodox Church. As expected, the consent of King-elect Wladyslaw IV rapidly followed. Despite a subsequent whittling down of the "points of 1632," in practice, the victory remained. Though its phrasing was patently ambiguous, of particular importance was the right of the Orthodox to fill their vacated sees, including that of Kiev. In fact the sees had all been occupied since 1620 through the consecrations performed without announcement or publicity by Patriarch Theophanes. The consecrations were done at night in an unlighted sanctuary, as if by stealth, so as not to cause any disturbance. These consecrations, of course, had never received official recognition, but the Polish State seems to have come to terms with the fait accompli, if only because it could hardly avoid dealing with the new bishops. Now in 1632, with the new legal concession, it would be reasonable to expect that what was de facto would be made de jure. But nothing of this sort occurred. The Orthodox themselves, strangely enough, made no attempt to take advantage of the new law by applying for royal confirmation of their active hierarchy. It was decided instead that all the old bishops should retire and their bishoprics be turned over to new elects. This was not done because the episcopal occupants were in any way considered to be "illegal," that is, in office without the confirmation of the Crown, nor because the Church judged them to be of questionable merit. Indeed, they could be credited with having restored both order and canonical  prestige to the Church in a time of real and present danger. It was simply that, although the old bishops may have played a preponderant role in the protracted struggle with the state in order to obtain recognition, the victory itself was the work of younger figures, partisans of a new and opposing ecclesiastical-political orientation, who had little interest in strengthening the hierarchical authority of their antagonists by a formal legalization. Consequently, what on the basis of the "points of 1632" had been touted as a "restitution" of the Orthodox hierarchy, was in reality an annulment of the existing hierarchy, established years earlier by Patriarch Theophanes. New bishops were now hastily and uncanonically chosen by the Orthodox delegates to the Diet rather than by local diocesan conventions and immediately confirmed by the King. It was in this way that Peter Mogila, aristocrat and Polonophile, was elected metropolitan of Kiev.

Mogila did not expect a peaceful reception in Kiev in his new capacity, even though he had many sympathizers there. Kiev already had a metropolitan, Isaia Kopinskii, consecrated in 1620 in Peremyshl by Theophanes and then translated to Kiev in 1631 at the death of  Iov Boretskii. What is more, Kopinskii had already clashed with Mogila over the establishment of a Latin collegium in Kiev as well as in connection with the Smotritskii affair. This is why Mogila's consecration took place not in the city of his new see as was the rule and custom, but in Lvov, at the hands of Ieremia Tisarovskii, the local bishop, l63 two bishops of Theophanes' consecration, and an emigre Greek bishop. These clashes also explain why he sought patriarchal confirmation from Cyril Lucaris, who was once again on the ecumenical throne. Mogila received this and more. He was also bestowed with the title "Exarch of the Throne of the Holy Apostolic See of Constantinople." Fortified now with a consecration of double authority, and in the dual role of lawful metropolitan and patriarchal exarch, Mogila returned to Kiev. Even so, he was not able to avoid a grievous struggle with his "demoted" predecessor and finally had to resort to the secular authorities to secure Kopinskii's forcible removal. l64 Nor did this once and for all solve the conflict. The clash between Mogila and Kopinskii was not simply a competition for position or power. It was a collision of  deep-rooted convictions about the fundamental problem of ecclesiastical orientation, in both its political and cultural dimensions.

Isaia Kopinskii was a man of simple and strong faith, somewhat on the order of Ivan Vishenskii. 165 Immersed as he was in the traditions of eastern theology and ascetics, he viewed "external wisdom" with skepticism and even antagonism.

The reasoning of this world is one thing, the reasoning of the spirit another. All the saints studied the spiritual reasoning coming from the Holy Spirit, and like the sun, they have illuminated the world. But now one acquires his power of reasoning not from the Holy Spirit, but from Aristotle, Plato, Cicero, and other pagan philosophers. And therefore, people are utterly blinded by falsehood and seduced from right understanding. The saints learned of Christ's commandments and of his works in the spirit. But these people learn mere words and speech, and therefore all their wisdom is on their tongues and darkness and gloom abide in their souls.

Kopinskii said this of the Latins, but it could have been even more easily directed at Mogila and the Orthodox of the new orientation. Kopinskii's Spiritual Alphabet, subtitled Ladder for the Spiritual Life in God [Alfavit dukhovnyi. Lestnitsa dukhovnago po Boze zhitel 'stva] offers a significant and symptomatic contrast to Mogila's Orthodox Confession [Pravoslavnoe Ispovedanie] .166 Their antithesis of outlook and spirit is the main source for the struggle for power between the two men. Of course there was also a difference of political orientation: Isaia Kopinskii looked to the Orthodox state of Muscovy, while Peter Mogila sought help from the Catholic Kingdom of Poland. In their clash the Polish state had no reason to support Kopinskii and every reason to patronize Mogila. Faced with vigorous protests from Rome, the Polish Roman Catholic hierarchy, and the Uniates, King Wladyslaw IV was obliged if only for raisons d'etat to hold to his commitment made in the Pacta conventa of 1632, although he did find it necessary to make certain concessions to the Uniates at the expense of the new rights of the Orthodox. Wladyskaw hoped, it seems, that over the course of time the western orientation of his new Orthodox leaders might mitigate Orthodox-Uniate tension and even promote the cause of Catholic unity in the realm. It  should be noted that within a few years a plan of a "universal union" [universal naia unia] did come forth, and at the center of negotiations there stood Orthodox of the new orientation, most notably Peter Mogila as well as Prince Afanasii Puzina who in the elections of 1632 had been chosen bishop of Lutsk. 167  Once ensconced as  metropolitan, Mogila set out with new zeal to implement his ecclesiastical and cultural designs. His best results came in the field of education, especially (since he was most gifted as an organizer) in consolidating and extending the school system he began when abbot of the Monastery of the Caves. Of great importance also was his publication work, in particular his compilation of  the Orthodox Confession and resumption of the printing of liturgical materials. Most critical for the future were Mogila's efforts to revise and reform the liturgies. First there was the Lithos [Rock], published in 1644 under the pseudonym of Evsevii Pimen. It was intended as a defense of the Eastern rite and Orthodox liturgy against the attacks of Kassian Sakovich, who had gone over to Latinism, l68 but much if not most of the large body of liturgical material in the Lithos came from Latin sources. In 1646 there appeared the famous Evkhologion or Trebnik [Prayer Book] .169 This consisted of a comprehensive collection of rites, offices, and occasional prayers, accompanied by "prefaces" and "explanatory rubrics," which were accompanied by explanatory articles usually taken "z lacinskiey agendy," that is, from the Roman Ritual of Pope Paul V. l70  Many of the rites in the Trebnik had been reshaped, usually by replacing traditional prayers with prayers translated from the Latin. There has been no comprehensive study of Mogila's Trebnik, but those portions which have been analyzed betray an unmistakable dependency on the Latin sources, and from time to time a deliberate deviation from the Greek pattern (e.g., in the forms for the dedication and consecration of churches, in the blessing of bells, in the rite of "viaticum," 171  in the ordo commendationis ad animae . . .). 172  No doubt some of the changes were inconsequential. What cannot be dismissed, however, is the close attention given to Latin rites and regulations and the open disregard of the Greek tradition. Moreover, a number of the rites and offices printed in the Trebnik were totally innovative for Orthodox liturgies. Finally, some of the changes introduced by Mogila bore theological implications of importance, as for example, the shift from the declarative to the imperative form of absolution in the sacrament of Penance. Indeed, as a whole the theology of the sacraments articulated in Mogila's liturgical "prefaces" was decidedly western. What resulted from the Trebnik, then, was a radical and thorough "Latinization" of the Eastern rite. This did not escape the notice of  contemporaries, especially the Uniates, but also the Orthodox of  Moscow, who regarded books of "Lithuanian print," including the Kiev editions of Mogila, with suspicion and apprehension. Ironically, because of the liturgical work of Mogila and his co-laborers, the Orthodox in Poland experienced a "Latinization of rites" earlier than did the Uniates. In fairness it should be noted that Mogila was not the first of the Orthodox in Kiev to borrow from Latin liturgical sources. Iov Boretskii took steps in this direction, as for example, in the Lenten rite of "Passias." 173  Nor was Mogila the originator of that process of cultural absorption of Latin liturgical ideas and motifs. Others preceded him. Still in this trend toward the "Latinization" of the liturgy Mogila stands well to the fore because he promoted it on a larger scale and more systematically than anyone else.

To interpret the reign of Peter Mogila with precision is difficult. It has been argued that Mogila sought to create an "occidental Orthodoxy," and thereby to disentangle Orthodoxy from its "obsolete" oriental setting. The notion is plausible. But however Mogila's motives are interpreted, his legacy is an ambiguous one. On the one hand, he was a great man who accomplished a great deal. And in his own way he was even devout. Under his guidance and rule the Orthodox Church in West Russia emerged from that state of disorientation and disorganization wherein it had languished ever since the catastrophe at Brest. On the other hand, the Church he led out of this ordeal was not the same. Change ran deep. There was a new and alien spirit, the Latin spirit in everything. Thus, Mogila's legacy also includes a drastic "Romanization" of the Orthodox Church. He brought Orthodoxy to what might be called a Latin "pseudomorphosis." True, he found the Church in ruins and had to rebuild, but he built a foreign edifice on the ruins. He founded a Roman Catholic school in the Church, and for generations the Orthodox clergy was raised in a Roman Catholic spirit and taught theology in Latin. He "Romanized" the liturgies and thereby "Latinized" the mentality and psychology, the very soul of the Orthodox people. Mogila's  "internal toxin," so to speak, was far more dangerous than the Unia. The Unia could be resisted, and had been resisted, especially when there were efforts to enforce it. But Mogila's "crypto-Romanism" entered silently and imperceptibly, with almost no resistance. It has of course often been said that Mogila's "accretions" were only external, involving form not substance. This ignores the truth that form shapes substance, and if an unsuitable form does not distort substance, it prevents its natural growth. This is the meaning of "pseudomorphosis." Assuming a Roman garb was an alien act for orthodoxy. And the paradoxical character of the whole situation was only increased when, along with the steady "Latinization" of the inner life of the Church, its canonical autonomy was steadfastly maintained.

While striving to keep the Orthodox Church in Poland independent, Mogila and his confreres of the new orientation kept to their plans for a "universal union." As early as 1636, a joint conference was sought between Uniates and Orthodox to consider a proposal for an autonomous West Russian patriarchate. Rome was even assured that the scheme would attract many Orthodox, including perhaps the metropolitan. But for some reason the conference never materialized. Yet another project was advanced in 1643, this time in a special memorandum submitted by Peter Mogila. It is known to us only in the paraphrase of Ingoli, secretary to the Office of Propaganda. 174 Mogila's memorandum apparently consisted of a lengthy discussion of the divergences between the two churches, the conditions he believed necessary for reunion, and an outline of the means to achieve them. Mogila did not see any insurmountable differences of doctrine. Filioque and per filium varied only in the phrasing. What divergence there was on purgatory was even less consequential, since the Orthodox did in some form acknowledge it. In ritual, too, agreement on all points was readily possible. The only serious difficulty was papal supremacy. Even if this were to be accepted by the Orthodox, Mogila stipulated, the eastern churches must still be allowed the principle of autocephalous patriarchates. It appears Mogila was willing to limit the "reunion" to Poland: he did not mention Muscovy, or the Greeks bound in Turkish captivity. Nor did he seek a merger: l'unione e non l'unite. For even under the supremacy of the pope the Orthodox were to retain their constitution. The metropolitan was still to be elected by the bishops, and although it would be expected that he take an oath of allegiance to the pope, his election would not require papal confirmation. In the event that the ecumenical patriarchate should unite with Rome, its jurisdiction in Poland was to be restored. The last section of Mogila's memorandum set out the means by which the new plan of union should be examined and deliberated. First it should be submitted to local and provincial diets for their discussion. Next, a conference ought to be arranged between the Uniates and the Orthodox, without, however, any reference to a perspective union. The findings obtained at these preliminary meetings should then be submitted to the general Diet of the realm. However elaborate, as with the project of 1636, nothing came of Mogila's reunion memorandum of 1643. And a few years later he died (1647).

Peter Mogila's attitude to the problems of the Roman Catholic Church was clear and simple. He did not see any real difference between Orthodoxy and Rome. He was convinced of the importance of canonical independence, but perceived no threat from inner "Latinization." Indeed, he welcomed it and promoted it in some respect for the very sake of securing the Church's external independence. Since Mogila sought to accomplish this within an undivided "universe of culture," the paradox was only further heightened. Under such conditions, Orthodoxy lost its inner independence us well as its measuring rod of self-examination. Without thought or scrutiny, as if by habit, western criteria of evaluation were adopted. At the same time links with the traditions and methods of the East were broken. But was not the cost too high? Could the Orthodox in  Poland truly afford to isolate themselves from Constantinople and Moscow? Was not the scope of vision impractically narrow? Did not the  rupture with the eastern part result in the grafting on of an alien and, artificial tradition which would inevitably block the path of creative development? It would be unfair to place all blame for this on Mogila. The process of "Latinization" began long before he came on the scene. He was less the pioneer of a new path than an articulator of his time. Yet Peter Mogila contributed more than any other, as organizer, educator, liturgical reformer, and inspirer of the Orthodox Confession, to the entrenchment of "crypto-Romanism" in the life of the West Russian Church. From here it was transported to  Moscow in the seventeenth century by Kievan scholars and in the eighteenth century by bishops of western origin and training.




The Orthodox Confession is the most significant and expressive document of the Mogila era. Its importance is not limited to the history of the West Russian Church, since it became a confession of faith for the Eastern Church (though only after a struggle, and its authoritative character is still open to question). Who the author or the editor of the Confession really was remains uncertain. It is usually attributed to Peter Mogila or Isaia Kozlovskii. 175 More than likely it was a collective work, with Mogila and various members of his circle sharing in the composition. The exact purpose of the Confession also remains unclear. Originally conceived as a "catechism," and often called one, it seems to have been intended as a clarification of the Orthodox faith in relation to the Protestants. In fact, it is now widely assumed that Mogila's Confession was prepared as a rejoinder to the Confession of Cyril Lucaris, which appeared in 1633 and whose pro-Calvinist leanings stirred disquiet and confusion in the whole Orthodox world. In 1638 - after certain collusion and pressure from Kome - both Lucaris and his Confession were condemned by a synod in Constantinople. 176 These events may explain why when Mogila's Confession came out the Greek Church was drawn to it and, after editing by Syrigos, 177 conferred on it the Church's authority.

The first public appearance of the Orthodox Confession came in 1640, when Peter Mogila submitted it to a Church council in Kiev for discussion and endorsement. Its original title, Exposition of the Faith of the Orthodox Church in Little Russia, indicates the limited scope intended for the document. Primarily aimed at theologians and those who were concerned with theology, the Confession was composed in Latin. The council in Kiev criticized the draft at  a number of points. Divergent views were voiced about the origin of the  soul and its destiny after death, particularly in regard to purgatory and "an earthly paradise." 178  Here Mogila had argued for creationism 179 as well as for the existence of purgatory. The council in Kiev also engaged in an extended discussion as to when the actual metastasis of the elements occurs in the Eucharistic liturgy. Before it  concluded, the council introduced certain amendments into the Confession. The document was again subjected to open discussion in 1642 at what has been referred to as a council, but what was in fact a conference in Iasi, convened, so it seems, on the initiative of Mogila's friend, the Moldavian prince, Basil, surnamed Lupul, the Wolf. 180  In attendance were two representatives of the ecumenical patriarchate, both sent from Constantinople with the title of exarch, Meletios Syrigos, one of the most remarkable Greek theologians of the seventeenth century, and Porphyrius, metropolitan of Nicea, l81 as well as several Moldavian bishops, including Metropolitan Varlaam, 182 and three delegates from Kiev - Isaia Kozlovskii, Ignatii Oksenovich, 183 and Ioasaf Kononovich. 184 Meletios Syrigos took the leading role. Syrigos raised a number of objections to the Confession, and when translating it into Greek introduced various amendments. Most of his changes were actually stylistic. He chose, for example, to eliminate certain Scriptural quotations used in the draft. Mogila had followed the Latin Vulgate, which meant that some of his citations were either not in the Septuagint or were so differently phrased that to retain them would have made the Confession highly inappropriate for Orthodox believers.

Mogila was not satisfied with the Confession as amended by Syrigos. He decided not to print it, and in its place he published simultaneously in Kiev a Ukrainian Church Slavonic translation and a Polish version, the so-called Brief Catechism [Malyikatekhizis, 1645] .185 Only a few of the changes proposed by Syrigos for the Confession were adopted in the Brief Catechism. Moreover, it was intended for a different audience, "for the instruction of  young people," ["dla cwiczenia Mlodzi"], which is why it was first composed in colloquial language. In 1649 Mogila's Brief Catechism was translated from the Ukrainian Church Slavonic into "Slavonic-Russian" and published in Moscow. In the meantime, the history of Syrigos' revised Greek version of the Orthodox Confession began a new chapter. In 1643 it was officially endorsed by the four eastern patriarchs. However, since the Greek Church showed little interest in publishing it, the first Greek edition appeared only in 1695. From this latter edition, a Slavonic-Russian translation was made and published in 1696 at the request of Metropolitan Varlaam Iasinskii of Kiev l86 with the blessing of Patriarch Adrian. 187  This was almost a half century after the Brief Catechism had been published in Moscow. 188

Mogila's Confession, in complete contrast to Lucaris' Protestant oriented Confession, was patently compiled from Latin sources. As the plan of the book betrays, its arrangement was also on the Latin pattern. It was divided according to the so-called "three theological virtues," Faith, Hope, and Charity. Belief was elucidated through an interpretation of the Creed. Ethics were expounded by means of commentaries on the Lord's Prayer, the Beatitudes, and the Decalogue. Of course the compilers had more than one Latin paradigm before them. The most obvious source was the Catechismus Romanus,189 which first appeared in Greek translation in 1582. Others seem to have been the Opus Catechisticum, sive Summa doctrinae christianae of Peter Canisius, S.J., 190  the Compendium doctrinae christianae (Dillingen, 1560) by the Dominican Petrus de Soto,l91 and the Disputationes de controversiis christianae fidei adversus hujus temporis haereticos (Rome, 1581-93) of Cardinal Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621). 192  To cite further Latin sources is unnecessary. The main point is that taken as a whole the Orthodox Confession is little more than a compilation or adaptation of Latin material, presented in a Latin style. Indeed, Mogila's Confession can justly be categorized as one of the many anti-Protestant expositions, which appeared through out Europe during the Counter Reformation or Baroque era. Certainly the Confession was more closely linked to the Roman Catholic literature of its day than to either traditional or contemporary spiritual life in the Eastern Church.

It is true that in Mogila's Confession key Roman doctrines, including the primacy of the pope, are repudiated. Nevertheless, much of the substance and the whole of the style remain Roman, and not even Syrigos' editing at Iasi could alter that fact. After all, as was customary for Greeks in the seventeenth century, Syrigos had gone to a Latin school. He attended Padua, where he became an adherent of Bellarmine, or, as his contemporaries said of him, "omnino Bellarminum spirare videtur." This is not said to argue that the teaching of the Orthodox Confession was at certain points in error. It was not so much the doctrine, but the manner of presentation that was, so to speak, erroneous, particularly the choice of language and the tendency to employ any and all Roman weapons against the Protestants even when not consonant in full or in part with Orthodox presuppositions. And it is here that the chief danger of Mogila's Latin "pseudomorphosis" or "crypto-Romanism" surfaces. The impression is created that Orthodoxy is no more than a purified or refined  version of Roman Catholicism. This view can be stated quite succinctly: "Let us omit or remove certain controversial issues, and the rest of  the Roman theological system will be Orthodox." Admittedly, in some ways this is true. But the theological corpus that is thereby  obtained lacks or sorely reduces the native genius and the ethos of the eastern theological tradition. Mogila's "crypto-Romanism," in spite of its general faithfulness to Orthodox forms, was for a long time to bar the way to any spontaneous and genuine theological development in the East.

It is instructive from this same point of view to compare the Orthodox Confession with the theological works of Silvestr Kossov, Mogila's follower and successor as metropolitan of Kiev. His Exegesis [Ekzegezis] published in 1635 sought to vindicate the new Latin schools which Mogila organized for the Orthodox. His Instruction, or Science of the Seven Sacraments [Didaskalia albo nauka o sedmi sakramentakh, 1637] was an attempt to answer the charges of Protestantism leveled against him by his Roman opponents. Kossov, it is important to note, chose to respond to these critics in the language of Latin theology. This is particularly evident in that portion of his book devoted to the sacraments, which closely follows the well-known treatise of Peter Arcudius. 193 Latin terminology abounds in his work: "transubstantiation " the distinction between "form" and "matter," the "words of institution" as the "form" of the sacrament of the Eucharist, "contrition" as the "matter" of Penance, and others. Since liturgical practice organically follows liturgical theology, it became necessary for the Orthodox of the new orientation to make alterations in the rites. Peter Mogila's Trebnik permanently established a number of those changes, which had developed in practice as well. It also introduced certain new ones. For example, in the sacrament of Confession the formula for absolution was changed from the  impersonal "your sins are forgiven you" [grekhi tvoi otpushchaiutsia] to the personal "and I, unworthy priest" [i az, nedostoinyiierei]. It is also at this time that the sacrament of anointing of the sick [euchelation] came to be interpreted as ultima unctio, and to be used as a form of viaticum, whereas previously the eastern tradition had always regarded it as a sacrament of healing.  194  With the next generation in Kiev, Latin influences on religious thought and practice were to intensify and expand in a more systematic manner.




During the lifetime of Peter Mogila, the Kiev collegium was still not a theological school. The charter, granted on March 18, 1635, by King Wladyslaw N, made it a condition that teaching in the collegia should be limited to philosophy ("ut humaniora non ultra Dialecticam et Logicam doceant"). Only towards the end of the seventeenth century, with the introduction of a special "theological class" into the curriculum, was theology taught as a separate discipline. Some problems of theology, however, were treated in courses in philosophy. At the Kiev collegium the general plan of education was adopted from the Jesuit school system. This included the curriculum down to the level of even textbooks. The texts began with Alvarius grammar l95 and ended with Aristotle and Aquinas. Also similar to the Jesuit collegia and academies in Poland were the organization of school life, the teaching methods, and the discipline. The language of instruction was Latin, and of all other subjects offered Greek was given lowest priority. Thus in practically every respect the Kiev collegium represents a radical break with the traditions of earlier schools in West Russia. Though it does seem that the school furnished an adequate preparation for life in Poland, its students were hardly initiated into the heritage of the Orthodox East. Scholasticism was the focus of teaching. And it was not simply the ideas of individual scholastics that were expounded and assimilated, but the very spirit of scholasticism. Of course this was not the scholasticism of the Middle Ages. It was rather the neo-scholasticism or pseudo-scholasticism of the Council of Trent. 196 It was the Baroque theology of the Counter-Reformation Age. This does not mean that the intellectual horizon of a seventeenth century scholar in Kiev was narrow. His erudition could be quite extensive. Students of that era read a great deal. But usually their reading was in a limited sphere. The Baroque Age was, after all, an intellectually arid era, a period of self-contained erudition an epoch of imitation. In the life of the mind it was not a creative.

The middle of the seventeenth century was a difficult and troubled time for the Ukraine. "The Kiev collegium," to quote Lazar Baranovich, l97 Archbishop of Chernigov, "shrank in stature, and became like a small Zacchaeus." Not until the 1670's, under the rectorship of Varlaam Iasinskii (later metropolitan of Kiev) was the beleaguered and desolate school restored. During this troubled period it was not unusual, it was in fact almost customary, for students to go abroad to be trained. Varlaam himself had studied in Elbing and in Olomouc, and had done some work at the academy in Cracow. His colleagues in the Kiev collegium were educated either at the Jesuit Academy in Engelstadt or at the Greek College of St. Athanasius in Rome. Even after the collegium regained its strength, this custom did not entirely end. It is known that many of those who taught there at the end of the seventeenth arid the beginning of the eighteenth century had in their student days formally repudiated Orthodoxy and passed under "Roman obedience." No doubt this was facilitated, even necessitated, by the requirement then in effect that admission to the Jesuit schools be conditional upon conversion to Rome, or at least acceptance of the Unia. Stefan Iavorskii, bishop and patriarchal locum tenens under Peter the Great, is a prominent example: l98 Hence the comment of a newly arrived Jesuit observer in Moscow generally about Russia and particularly about the Brotherhood Monastery in Kiev, where the collegium was located: "There are many Uniate monks, or monks who are close to the Unia, and even more who hold the highest opinion of us . . . In Kiev, there is an entire monastery made up of Uniates." 199 His remark lends credence to a sharp attack on the Kiev scholars leveled by Dositheus, Patriarch of  Jerusalem: 200

In that land, called the land of the Cossacks, there are many who have been taught by the Latins in Rome and in Poland, who thereafter have become abbots and archimandrites, and who in their monasteries publicly read unseemly sophistries and wear Jesuit rosaries around their neck . . . Let it be decreed that upon the death of these archimandrites and priests, no one who goes to a Popish place for study shall be appointed archimandrite, abbot, or bishop.

In later years Dositheus became especially alarmed at Stefan Iavorskii, then locum tenens of the patriarchal see of Moscow. He charged him with Latinism and demanded the immediate withdrawal of all Iavorskii's claims to the Moscow patriarchate. Dositheus, it should be noted, was equally strident with like-minded Greek candidates, declaring that "no Greek, nor anyone brought up in Latin and Polish lands and trained in their schools should be chosen patriarch of Moscow." Because, he warned, "they are associated with the Latins and accept their various manners and dogmas."

What the "manners" and "dogmas" are to which Dositheus refers can be ascertained by examining the lectures and lesson plans as well as others of the writings of various instructors at the Kiev collegium spanning the last half of the seventeenth century. Key examples will suffice. Ioanniki Goliatovskii (d. 1688), rector from 1658 to 1662, was a preacher, polemist, and prolific writer. He acknowledged quite openly that he adapted Latin sources to his purposes. In 1659, for a new edition of Key to Understanding [Kliuch razumeniia], one of his many sermon collections, he appended A Brief Guide for the Composition of Sermons [Nauka korotkaia albo sposobzlozhenia kazania]. For later editions he enlarged it. Like most of Goliatovskii's work, the Brief Guide is characterized by a decadent classicism. There is in his choice and elucidation of texts and subjects -weighted as they are with what he called "themes and narrations" -a forced and pompous rhetorical symbolism. Here is how he rendered advice: "read books about beasts, birds, reptiles, fish, trees, herbs, stones, and the various waters which are to be found in the seas, rivers, and springs, observe their nature, properties, and distinctive features, notice all this and use it in the speech which you wish to make." Of course all public discourse in his day suffered from bizarre analogies and an overabundance of illustration. Even before the oratorical style of Kiev had reached this kind of extreme, Meletii Smotritskii ridiculed the habit Orthodox preachers had for imitating Latin-Polish homiletics. "One enters the pulpit with Ossorius, 201 another with Fabricius, 202 and a third with Skarga," 203 he said, referring to the fashionable Polish preachers of the day. He could also have named Tomasz Mlodzianowski, 204 a sixteenth century preacher of wide acclaim, who was the most imitated and grotesque of all. None of this was really genuine preaching. It was much more an exercise in rhetorics quite suited to the prevailing taste. Still, even while engaged in such verbal excesses, Goliatovskii and others like him staunchly opposed Jesuit polemists, and at length refuted their views on papal authority, the Filioque, and various other issues. But Goliatovskii's cast of mind, as well as his theological and semantic style of argument, remained thoroughly Roman.

The tenor of strained artificiality is even stronger in the writings of Lazar Baranovich, who was rector at the Kiev collegium from 1650 to 1658 and then archbishop of Chernigov. 205 A brave opponent of Jesuit propaganda, he did not hesitate to take on subjects of the greatest controversy, as is evident in his New Measure of the Old Faith [Nowa miara starey Wiary, 1676]. But once again the manner of expression and the mode of thought are typical of Polish Baroque. Baranovich even wrote in Polish, filling his works with fables, "an abundance of witticisms and puns," jests, "conceits and verbal gems." "In those days," of course, as has been noted, "it was considered appropriate to mix sacred traditions of the Church with mythological tales." Yet another Kievan scholar of this variety was Antonii Radivillovskii. 206 All of his homilies [prediki] and sermons [kazaniia] were modelled on Latin examples. And his book, The Garden of Mary, Mother of God [Ogorodok Marii Bogoroditsy, 1676] well illustrates the highly allegorical and rhetorical Latin style exercised on Marian themes common to that era.

Of a somewhat different mold than these Kievan scholars was Adam Zernikav of Chernigov. He deserves mention because of his special place in the ranks of religious leaders at that time in the south of Russia. Born in Konigsberg, and trained in Protestant schools, Zernikav came to Orthodoxy through scholarly study of the early Christian tradition. 207 After a long period in the West, primarily in study at Oxford and London, he turned up in Chernigov. There he made his mark as the author of the treatise, De processione Spiritus Sancti, which after its belated publication in Leipzig in 1774-1776 by Samuil Mislavskii, Metropolitan of Kiev, 208 gained him wide renown. It appears to have been Zernikav's only work, but it is the work of  a lifetime. There is manifested in it an enormous erudition and a great gift for theological analysis. To this day Zernikav's work remains a skillful compilation of valuable materials, one of the most comprehensive studies on the subject ever made. It still deserves to be read.

The two most outstanding examples of Kievan learning in the late seventeeth century were Saint Dimitrii (Tuptalo, 1651-1709) and Stefan Iavorskii, though to be sure their religious importance is not confined to the history of Kievan theology. Each played a large part in the history of Great Russian theology. Nevertheless, both figures are quite representative of the later years of the Mogila epoch. Dimitrii, who became bishop of Rostov after his move to the north, is famous for his work in the field of hagiography. Here his main work was his book of saints' lives, The Reading Compendium (Chet i-Minei, 1689-1705). Based for the most part on western sources, the bulk of the work is taken from the renowned seven volume collection of Laurentius Surius,209 Vitae sanctorum Orientis et Occidentis, (1563-1586, itself actually a reworking into Latin of Symeon Metaphrastes' work on the lives of  saints).210  Dimitrii also utilized various of the volumes of the Acta Sanctorum, which had by his time appeared in the Bollandists' edition, 211 as well as Skarga's personal collection of hagiographies, Lives of the Saints (Zywoty swgtych, 1576) which, judging from the large number of translations that circulated in manuscript form, must have been popular among the Orthodox for a long time. Skarga's style and language, too, left a deep imprint on the work of St. Dimitrii. Greek and Old Church Slavonic materials, however, are hardly present at all, and there is scarcely a trace of the diction and idiom of the East. St. Dimitrii's  sermons were also of a western character, especially those of the early years. The same is true of his morality plays, written in Rostov for school performances, and patterned as they were after the popular Jesuit dramas of the time. The catalogue of Dimitrii's private library which has been preserved tells a similar story: Aquinas, Cornelius a Lapide,2l2 Canisius, Martin Becan,213 the sermons of Mlodzianowski, numerous books on history, the Acta Sanctorum, a number of the Fathers in western editions, and publications from Kiev and others of the cities in the south. On the whole it was a library  appropriate to an erudite Latin. True, in his spiritual life, St. Dimitrii was not confined to the narrow mold of a Latin world, but as a thinker and writer he was never able to free himself from the mental habits and forms of theological pseudo-Classicism acquired when at school in Kiev. Nor did he wish to do so, insisting with obstinacy on their  sacred character. And in the north, in Russia, where he settled, he never came to understand its distinctive religious ethos and the circumstances that shaped it. To cite but one example: Dimitrii understood the Old Believer movement as no more than the blindness of an ignorant populace. 214

A somewhat younger man than St. Dimitrii was Stefan Iavorskii (1658-1722), who came to prominence in the north only during the reign of Peter the Great. Nevertheless he was a typical representative of the Kievan cultural pseudomorphosis," that "Romanized" Orthodoxy of the Mogila epoch. Iavorskii studied under the Jesuits in Lvov and Lublin, and afterwards in Poznan and Vilna. During these years he was doubtlessly under "Roman obedience." On his return to South Russia, he rejoined the Orthodox Church, took monastic vows in Kiev, and received an appointment to teach at the collegium, where he later became prefect and then rector. Iavorskii was a gifted preacher, delivering his sermons with passion and authority. In spite of his simple and direct intent to teach and persuade, his style was that same pseudo-Classicism, replete with rhetorical circumlocution. Still, Iavorskii was a man of religious conviction, and he always had something to say. His main theological work, Rock of Faith [Kamen' very] was a polemical treatise against Protestantism. 215 Written in Latin, even though he had left Kiev, it was less an original work than an adaptation or even abridgement of a highly select body of Latin books. His main source was Bellarmine's Disputationes de controversiis christianae fidei adversus hujus temporis haereticos from which Iavorskii repeated entire sections or paragraphs, often word for word. Another basic source was Martin Becan's Opera (1649). Though a valuable refutation of Protestantism, Iavorskii's Rock of Faith was hardly an exposition of Orthodox theology, although unfortunately it has too often been understood as such. A second book of Iavorskii's, Signs of the Coming of the Antichrist [Znameniia prishestviia Antikhristova, 1703], was also more or less a literal rendering of a Latin work, in this case the treatise De Antichristo libro XI (Rome, 1604) by the Spanish Dominican Tomas Malvenda. 216

With the beginning of the eighteenth century, the Mogilan epoch reached a climax, when the school and culture Mogila had established at Kiev came to its fruition. In theology and in other fields as well the period during the rule of the hetman Mazepa (1687-1709) represents the height of what may be termed the Ukrainian Baroque. 217 For a time the Kievan Academy (promoted to the rank of "Academy" in 1701) was even referred to semi-officially as the "Academia Mogiliano Mazepiana." But its climax was also the end. The flowering was also an epilogue. Probably the most representative figure of this final chapter in the Mogila era in Kievan intellectual history was Ioasaf  Krokovskii (d. 1718), reformer, or even second founder, of the Kievan school. For a time he served as its rector and later he became metropolitan of Kiev. More than any other figure he seems to exhibit in religious activity and intellectual outlook all the ambiguities and contradictions of  Kiev's cultural "pseudomorphosis: Educated at the Greek College of St. Athanasius in Rome, Krokovskii for the rest of his life was to retain the theological set of mind, religious convictions, and devotional habits he acquired there. At Kiev, he taught theology according to Aquinas and centered his devotional life - as was  characteristic of the Baroque era - on the praise of the Blessed Virgin of the Immaculate Conception. It was under his rectorship that the student "congregations" of the Kiev Academy known as Marian Sodalities arose, in which members had to dedicate their lives "to the Virgin Mary, conceived without original sin" ("Virgini Mariae sine labe originali  conceptae") and take an oath to preach and defend against heretics that "Mary was not only without actual sin, venal or mortal, but also free from original sin," although adding that "those who regard her as conceived in original sin are not to be classed as heretics." 218 Krokovskii's acceptance of the Immaculate Conception and his propagation of the doctrine at Kiev was no more than the consolidation of a tradition that for some time in the seventeenth century had been forming among various representatives of Kievan theology, including St. Dimitrii of  Rostov. And in this realm, too, it was but an imitation or borrowing from Roman thought and practice. The growing idea of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary was intellectually linked with an evolving trend in the interpretation of Original Sin, but, more profoundly, it was rooted in a specific psychology and attitude developing historically within the bosom of the western Baroque. The veneration of Panagia and Theotokos by the Orthodox is by no means the same. 219 It is grounded in a spiritual soil of an altogether different kind.

Although the Ukrainian Baroque came to an end during the early eighteenth century, its traces have not fully vanished. Perhaps its most enduring legacy is a certain lack of sobriety, an excess of emotionalism or heady exaltation present in Ukrainian spirituality arid religious thought. It could be classified as a particular form of religious romanticism. Historically this found partial expression in numerous devout and edifying books, mostly half-borrowed, which at the end of the seventeenth and the beginning of the eighteenth centuries were coming out in Kiev, Chernigov, and other cities of South Russia. Interesting parallels to these literary documents can be found in the  religious painting and ecclesiastical architecture of the time. 220




From the cultural and historical points of view, Kievan learning was not a mere passing episode but an event of unquestionable significance. This was the first outright encounter with the West. One might even have called it a free encounter had it not ended in captivity, or more precisely, surrender. But for this reason, there could be no creative use made of the encounter. A scholastic tradition was developed and a school begun, yet no spiritually creative movement resulted. Instead there emerged an imitative and provincial scholasticism, in its literal sense a theologica scholastica or "school theology." This signified a new stage in religious and cultural consciousness. But in the process theology was torn from its living roots. A malignant schism set in between life and thought. Certainly the horizon of the Kievan erudites was wide enough. Contact with Europe was lively, with word of current searchings and trends in the West easily reaching Kiev. Still, the aura of doom hovered over the entire movement, for it comprised a "pseudomorphism" of Russia's religious consciousness, a "pseudomorphosis" of Orthodox thought.