Zolotonosha – Refuge of Architectural Monuments

Zolotonosha, which means ‘a load of gold' or 'a gold carrier’, may have originated from one of the many legends that existed, and many believe the name to have come about due to the golden hue of the Zolotonoshka sands. Nonetheless it is one of the many cities located within Ukraine along the Zolotonoshka River tributary, lying on the left of the Dnieper River, situated about 30 kilometers from the Cherkasy Oblast’s administrative center. Interestingly, Zolotonosha is the administrative center for the Zolotoniskyi Raion of the Cherkasy Oblast.

There’s not much information regarding the history of this city, nevertheless, it was first mentioned in 1576 in written works that were published the same year, while still under Polish rule. Zolotonosha has also retained the Magdeburg rights since it was granted the rights in 1635, allowing them their own coat of arms. The Magdeburg rights or Magdeburg law came about with the regulating of town laws in Germany. This was supposed to allow a form of independence or self governing within the cities and villages and was granted by the local ruler. In turn this was adopted by many monarchs in Eastern and Central Europe as was done by the city of Zolotonosha. During the Russian Civil War period, from 1917 to 1921, Zolotonosha became united with the Soviet Union and in turn came under the Ukrainian SSR till 1991, when the reign of the powerful Soviet Union crashed. Since then the city has been part of Ukraine.

Something that is interesting to take note of, is that according to the enforced rules of the middle 18th century Russia, no one of Jewish origin was permitted to reside within the country until 1794. During a census taken from 1799 to 1803 of Jewish males, it was estimated that an average of 134 – 231 resided here during this period, the majority being associated with the Merchant estate. This number fluctuated greatly through much of Zolotonosha’s history and at present is estimated at over 31,000 people.

There are many beautiful examples of architectural monuments throughout Ukraine, two examples of these lie in the city of Zolotonosha. The first is that of the ‘Preobrazhenska Church of the Krasnohirskoho Monastery’ designed in the exaggerated Ukrainian Baroque style by the well known architect Ivan Hryhorovych-Barskyi in 1767-1771. The second example is that of the Sviato-Uspenskyi Cathedral built in 1909.

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