Kith, Kin, And Neighbors: Communities And Confessions In Seventeenth-century Wilno by David FrickKith, Kin, And Neighbors: Communities And Confessions In Seventeenth-century Wilno by David Frick

Kith, Kin, And Neighbors: Communities And Confessions In Seventeenth-century Wilno

byDavid Frick

Hardcover | June 4, 2013

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In the mid-seventeenth century, Wilno (Vilnius), the second capital of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, was home to Poles, Lithuanians, Germans, Ruthenians, Jews, and Tatars, who worshiped in Catholic, Uniate, Orthodox, Calvinist, and Lutheran churches, one synagogue, and one mosque. Visitors regularly commented on the relatively peaceful coexistence of this bewildering array of peoples, languages, and faiths. In Kith, Kin, and Neighbors, David Frick shows how Wilno's inhabitants navigated and negotiated these differences in their public and private lives.

This remarkable book opens with a walk through the streets of Wilno, offering a look over the royal quartermaster's shoulder as he made his survey of the city's intramural houses in preparation for King Wladyslaw IV's visit in 1636. These surveys (Lustrations) provide concise descriptions of each house within the city walls that, in concert with court and church records, enable Frick to accurately discern Wilno's neighborhoods and human networks, ascertain the extent to which such networks were bounded confessionally and culturally, determine when citizens crossed these boundaries, and conclude which kinds of cross-confessional constellations were more likely than others. These maps provide the backdrops against which the dramas of Wilno lives played out: birth, baptism, education, marriage, separation or divorce, guild membership, poor relief, and death and funeral practices. Perhaps the most complete reconstruction ever written of life in an early modern European city, Kith, Kin, and Neighbors sets a new standard for urban history and for work on the religious and communal life of Eastern Europe.

David Frick is Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of Polish Sacred Philology in the Reformation and the Counter-Reformation: Chapters in the History of the Controversies (1551–1632) and Meletij Smotryc'kyj.
Title:Kith, Kin, And Neighbors: Communities And Confessions In Seventeenth-century WilnoFormat:HardcoverDimensions:512 pages, 9.38 × 6.63 × 0.39 inPublished:June 4, 2013Publisher:Cornell University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0801451280

ISBN - 13:9780801451287

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Table of Contents


1. Over the Quartermaster's Shoulder

2. The Neighbors

3. One Roof, Four Walls

4. The Bells of Wilno

5. Stereotyping, Writing, Speaking

6. Birth, Baptism, Godparenting

7. Education and Apprenticeship

8. Courtship and Marriage

9. Marital Discontents

10. Guild House, Workshop, Brotherhood Altar

11. Going to Law: The Language of Litigation

12. War, Occupation, Exile, Liberation (1655–1661)

13. Old Age and Poor Relief

14. Death in Wilno

Epilogue: Conflict and Coexistence

Appendix A: Selected Streets and Areas Treated in the Text

Appendix B: Genealogical Tables

Works Cited

Editorial Reviews

"This extraordinary book reconstructs the crisscrossing loyalties, affiliations, sodalities, and conflicts between and among segments of the population of early modern Wilno, home to five forms of Christianity (Catholic, Orthodox, Lutheran, Calvinist, and Uniate), as well as to Jews and Muslims. David Frick poses fundamental questions about the possibilities and limits of tolerance and toleration in a multiethnic, multiconfessional city. The neighborhood interactions, the dynamics of movement through the city, the interplay of calendars, commerce, and culinary practices coalesce, in Frick's nuanced treatment, to create a vision of a city culture that tolerated multiplicity without articulating a sense of tolerance, and that was bound by personal, professional, and spatial ties across confessions while, at the same time, manifesting a range of frictions both across and within confessional groupings. Without in any way romanticizing the situation, Frick explores the communities of interest and the 'communities of litigation,’ as well as the ‘communities of violence’ that functioned in early modern Wilno. One of the most exciting aspects of this book is Frick’s willingness to carry the reader along on his journey of exploration and discovery. This is a book where the intellectual process is on view at its most appealing and engaging. Kith, Kin, and Neighbors is nothing less than a masterpiece."—Valerie A. Kivelson, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of History, University of Michigan, author of Cartographies of Tsardom: The Land and Its Meanings in Seventeenth-Century Russia