2019, Volume 16, Issue 2

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Alexander V. Chernykh
Perm Federal Research Center of the Ural Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences
Perm, Russia

Names of Old-Believer Confessions in the Popular Terminology of the Perm Region

Voprosy onomastiki, 2019, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp. 85–110 (in Russian)
DOI: 10.15826/vopr_onom.2019.16.2.016

Received 14 February 2019

Abstract: The study deals with locally specific features of popular terminology related to various Old Ritualist groups in the traditional Russian culture of the Perm-Kama region. The collections of archival and field materials the author refers to offer a wide variety of such terms and their variants. Their abundance is due to the complex confessional structure of the Russian population of the Perm land where distinguishing between religious groups was necessary for building confessional identity and setting confessional boundaries. A closer look at the features of the scientific terminology related to these names suggests that the widespread term confessionism can be considered the most appropriate for this group of vocabulary. The paper also explores the ways these names of Old Ritualist communities have occurred in popular speech — by isolating the geographical, the anthroponymic, and the symbolic pattern. As it turns out, the group derived from personal and place names proves most productive. Context-wise, the popular names of Old Ritualist confessions refl ect historical facts and events of the local history, as well as features that can only be explained within the Old Believer culture. The paper describes the main lexical units related to Old Ritualist denominations — chasovennye (“the Chapel group”), pomortsy (“the shore-dwellers”), popovtsy (“the priestists”), the Belokrinitsky Agreement (after the Bila Krynytsia village), Beglopopovtsy (dissenters from “popovtsy”) and edinovertsy (“people of the same faith”). The paper enlists the most common names for each group, as well as it comments on the peculiarities of their usage and examples from the dialect speech of the Russian Perm-Kama region. A significant part of the names recorded in the region are commonly used both in Russia and abroad; a number of confessionisms are the official and scientific names of a particular Old Believer group. At the same time, a significant part consists of local names, tied to the particular region under consideration, and often typical only to this location.

Keywords: Russian language, Old Ritualists, Old Believers, Old Believer groups, popular terminology, confessions, Perm-Kama Region, dialect vocabulary.


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