GLAZIEV V.N. Fortress Cities of the Russian Black Earth Region in 1604–1618: Overcoming the Civil War


Vladimir N. Glaziev

Doctor of Sciences (History), Professor, Dean of Faculty of History,

Voronezh State University,

Universitetskaya Pl., 1, 394006 Voronezh, Russian Federation

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Abstract. The article concerns the premises and the course of the Civil War (the Time of Troubles) in the Russian Black Earth Region. Fortress cities “na Pole” [in the field] were founded in the late 16th century. The major part of the regional population were service-class people who were not as wealthy as serviceclass people from central uyezds. Introducing a work-off servitude caused their defection to False Dimitry. Fortress cities “na Pole” supported the movement under I. Bolotnikov’s and False Dimitry II’s command. In 1611-1612 the Black Earth Region cities didn’t seem to recognize Vladislav as a Russian tsar. A holistic analysis of the events of 1604-1618 in the fortified cities “na Pole” was not undertaken.

Methods and materials. The main sources for writing the article are the record keeping materials of Posolsky, Discharge, Local Prikazes, Voronezh Mandative House. The scientific principles on which the study is based include the principles of historicism and objectivity. The author uses general scientific methods of analysis, synthesis, the historical-genetic method, the systematic approach allowing to consider the events of political, economic, social history in their interrelation.

Analysis and Results. The article deals with the facets of the Civil War overcoming in the area of the Russian Black Earth Region. In the context of interreign and new tsar’s reign people’s self-organization expressed in creating provincial (“guba”) administrations, signing “Consolidated Charta” (“Utverzhdennaya Gramota”) by Black Earth Region city representatives on the election of Mikhail Romanov was extremely significant. In the fight against I. Zarutsky’s detachments most service-class people supported Mikhail Romanov, but some representatives of local Cossaks acted for the ataman. After 1613, settling the Black Earth Region area and uezd formation continued. Just at the Time of Troubles voivodes were appointed in those uezds where they owned land that can be traced in Voronezh cadastres. At the Time of Troubles final stage in 1617-1618 there happened an aggravation of military struggle in the Black Earth Region that was connected with the attacks of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth detachments. After 1618, social peacekeeping, restoring economy and defense system against Nogais and Crimean tribes were the main objectives for Black Earth Region authorities and society.

Key words: Russian Black Earth Region, fortress cities “na Pole” [in the field], the early 17th century, the Time of Troubles, Civil War overcoming.

Citation. Glaziev V.N. Fortress Cities of the Russian Black Earth Region in 1604-1618: Overcoming the Civil War. Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 4, Istoriya. Regionovedenie. Mezhdunarodnye otnosheniya [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. History. Area Studies. International Relations], 2019, vol. 24, no. 2, pp. 103-112. (in Russian). DOI:

Лицензия Creative Commons

Fortress Cities of the Russian Black Earth Region in 1604–1618: Overcoming the Civil War by Glaziev V.N. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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