Add to favorite
 
123
Subscribe to our Newsletters Subscribe to our Newsletters Get Daily Updates RSS


History of Bell Founding in Russia, Part 1
June 12, 2015 19:59


Since times immemorial bells and bell ringing have been an integral part of the Christian church service. Bells came to be used in Europe in the late 6th century and in Byzantium in the 9th century. The first annalistic record of bells in Russia dates back to 1066. During the Tatar-Mongolian invasion bell founding could not develop in Russia, and it was probably then when bells of the pre-Mongolian period were lost. Only two Old Russian bells and fragments of 40 more bells of the pre-Mongolian period have come down to us. The lower diameter of these bells varies from 30 to 60 cm. they are made of bronze containing 20 to 24 percent of tin.

Only twenty years after the ruining of Russian lands rare annalistic records of bells were made. One of them goes back to 1259. According to the annalistic text, Prince Daniil Galitsky transported bells and icons from St. Sophia Cathedral in to his ancestral lands of Kholm.

It took some time for bells to become as widespread and valued as traditional Slavic flat bells (aka the Semantron, or “bilo” in Russian). Tulip bells were initially treated as newcomers from the Catholic West and so not widely welcomed. Over time, however, the Semantrons, standing at the roots of the Orthodox bell ringing gave way to bells, and yet were kept up for a long time, especially in monasteries and village churches. Thus, the church property census carried out in the second half of the 17th century (the heyday of bell founding art in Russia) in the Novgorod diocese revealed that flat bells (bilo) were used in an overwhelming number of monasteries and churches in that period. Unfortunately, the traditions of playing the Semantron (bilo) in church service were gradually forgotten and by the 20th century the intricacies of their production and ringing were nearly lost in Russia but for several monasteries and Old Believers’ parishes in Altai, Siberia, Ukraine and other places.

Bell founding in Russia went through the same stages as in the West. Initially bells were made by monks, but later handicraftsmen took up bell founding. Among the founders working in Russia there were lots of masters brought by Russian princes from Europe. However, starting from the 15th century outstanding Russian bell founders came up. It should be noted that the profession of bell founders (often combined with cannon founding) was highly appreciated and hereditary.

The early 15th century saw the opportunity to cast quite many bells of large size. The earliest of the remained bells of that period is a bell of 1420. It is located in the belltower of the Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius. It is called Nikon’s or Wonder-worker’s Bell. Having quite an unusual shape, it nevertheless still participates in bell ringing.

Along with the inflow of bell founding masters from the Western Europe, Russia developed its own centers of bell founding. Pskov was the most popular town for that. Private bell foundries came to appear in Moscow from the period of Boris Godunov's reign.

Read more about russian Music Instruments... 




Author: Vera Ivanova

Tags: Bells Bell Ringing Semantron Russian Church Russian Music Instruments 

Next Previous

You might also find interesting:

Rock Opera Musical Crime and Punishment Now in Moscow Zhaleika Pyzhatka, a Folk Flute Russian Tradition of Semantron, aka Slavic Flat Bells, Part 1 7th Moscow Festival "Duduk and Organ"









Comment on our site


RSS   twitter   facebook   submit

Bookmark and Share

search on the map

Music Samples

Shnitke-03-Koncherto-grosso No 3




TAGS:
Rosa Khutor  Moscow monuments  Russian business  Higgs boson  Sochi 2014  Governors of Russia  Moscow  Russian tourism  Festivals in Moscow  health  Resources  Russian Choir  travel to Russia  Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Russia  Boris Stechkin  Andrey Zvyagintsev  Russian Cinema  Russian children  Alisher Usmanov  Khabarovsk  Roller Ballet  Alexey Tolstoy  George Harrison  Alexey Navalny  Russian customs  Romodanovo  Russian cinema actors  Omsk  Gidon Kremer  Russian souvenirs  Ecocenter  St. Petersburg  The Afisha Picnic  Little Tower House  bus tickets Russia FIFA  Moscow Metro  Russian sportsmen  Ufa  Russian hotels  Skopin Ceramis  Russian regions  Interros  Gourmet Tours  Exhibitions in Moscow  society and politics  Kulebaki  Tula Oblast  Russian space exploration  Sovremennik Theatre   Russian achaeology 


Travel Blogs
Top Traveling Sites