Власть и "канон священных текстов", оформленный противниками церковной реформы

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The article studies the conflict between secular and church authorities over the collection of extracts from ancient manuscripts and early printed books that were found by the defenders of the Old Belief in order to prove a violation of the tradition of the Russian Church as a result of the reform of the rite and liturgical practice. Quotes from the Holy Scripture, patristic tradition, and writings of church writers constituted the “canon of sacred texts” for the Old Believers, which was, in their opinion, equivalent to the Holy Scripture. Fragments of texts systematized according to the subjects were copied and distributed as manuscripts. By the importance of the problem to overcome schism secular and church authorities joined forces to solve it. This was especially evident in the activities of the Moscow Council of Russian Orthodox Church in 1681–1682. An analysis of the Council Decree allowed us to conclude that in the Proposal to the Council Feodor III Alexeyevich very precisely outlined the jeopardy of the “canon of sacred texts”. The monarch expressed worry of secular authorities about the distribution of manuscripts that increased the influence of Old Believers. In the Response of the Council, it was decided to stop the spread of “false letters” and do it together with the secular authorities. The article draws attention to the fact that the result of efforts of secular authorities was the execution of some Old Believers’ leaders. The church also did not stand aside and published Uvet Duhovnyi. The article shows, what position the author took with respect to the “canon of sacred texts” and how it reflected in his text. It is concluded that Archbishop Afanasy tried to convince readers that the Old Believer`s manuscripts, “bogomerzkie pisanye tetradki” (heretical handwritten notes), which contained extracts from the Holy Scripture and patristic tradition, had nothing in common with the true meaning of sources. Consequently, they could not argue the deviation of the reformers from the tradition of the Russian Church. The Archbishop Afanasy insisted that only “madness” could explain the doctrine of the defenders of the Old Belief.

Original languageRussian
Article number2
Pages (from-to)35-44
Number of pages10
JournalVestnik Novosibirskogo Gosudarstvennogo Universiteta, Seriya: Istoriya, Filologiya
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • 17 century
  • Authority
  • Manuscript collections
  • Quotes
  • Reform
  • Russian Church
  • Schism


  • 6.01.MM HISTORY

State classification of scientific and technological information


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