Language as a source of knowledge about the past

Language as a source of knowledge about the past


1. How do geographic names preserve the memory of past generations?

Exploring past times, historians time and again come across names of cities and towns, villages, rivers, lakes, tracts, etc. Some names have an ancient origin and have survived until now, others have disappeared forever in the maelstrom of historical events, leaving traces in legends and legends. However, they can also tell a lot about the past.

Many names of cities, towns and villages in Ukraine indicate the location of the settlement. So, the name of the city of Berezhany comes from the word “shore”: the first inhabitants settled on the bank of the Golden Lipa River, therefore they called themselves berezhans. The name of the city of Donetsk comes from the names of the rivers Don and Donets. The city of Lugansk owes its name to the Lugan River, which has a meadow creek. The city of Yellow Waters is located on the Yellow River – the name indicates that it was developing iron ore deposits that colored the water in yellow.

Geographical names are distributed, based on the names of animals, birds, plants. These are, in particular, the names of the villages Berezno, Olkhovaya, Kozelets, cities Dubno, Sosnitsa, Chernobyl, Vishnevoe.

Some names serve as evidence of the peculiarities of economic activity. Such are, for example, the names of settlements Bortnichi, Bortniki, Bortnev. They are associated with the word “board”, which meant the hollows of wild bees. Those who were engaged in collecting honey, called bortnikami, hence the name.

Thus, from separate names, a picture of the life of Ukrainians and other peoples that have lived on these lands in past centuries is formed: every name, if you know its meaning, ceases to be a common name – it becomes a testament to history.

2. What did Ukraine and its parts call it in the past?

You already know that the name Rus preceded the name of Ukraine for determining the land inhabited by Ukrainians-Rusics. Title Ukraine First used in the annals of 1187 in relation to the Kiev region, Pereyaslavshchina and Chernihiv region. It comes from the word country, which means native land, country, land. Subsequently, the name Ukraine ousted from everyday life more ancient.

For different parts of our country since ancient times use such names as Volyn, Kiev, Podolia, Galicia, Slobozhanshchina, Chernigov-Severschina, Bukovina, Transcarpathia and others. Each of them has its own history, they appeared in different times, that’s why everyone is the embodiment of the historical past. They are called Historical. Ethnographic Names, such as Hutsulshchina, are also used.

Outlined by historical and ethnographic names, the lands are distinguished by the features of people’s construction, clothing, rituals, economic activities, which were formed under the influence of the environment and historical features. You can find out about these features in the Museums of Folk Architecture and Life. The largest of these museums is in Pirogovo on the southern outskirts of Kiev.

Over 300 samples of national construction are stored here on the picturesque territory, and a collection of household utensils, tools, clothes, and works of folk art reaches 80 thousand units.



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Language as a source of knowledge about the past