of the Slavic Interest Group

16 October, AS XXX (1995)

From the Nachalnik

Greetings all!

As promised, I am enclosing a copy for each and every one of you of the expanded bibliography, our mailing list, and some odds and ends that I have thrown together into this newsletter. I make no promises that this will be a regularly appearing publication. So much depends on you! If you send me stuff, I'll distribute it. If not, then we'll just have to wait 'til next Pennsic to get together and plan some more.

What I want from this Group: I think we need some way in which to communicate with each other and share ideas, sources, and questions. To that end, I'm willing to serve as a conduit for information and queries. However, my usefulness relies upon your participation. For now, I'm willing to eat the cost of this communication (not insignificant, as the end cost of this packet is running around $50), but I want to feel like it is serving a purpose. Use the bibliography. Let other people know if it works, if it has omissions, if it has mistakes, if it has bad sources, etc. Use the mailing list. Contact people with similar interests and arrange to do things. Keep me informed of doings if you can so I can spread the word to everyone. If you want, communicate with the group yourself. There is no reason why I have to be the sole conduit.

Right now we are a bit Russian-heavy. This bias is due to my own interests and those of the more prolific contributors, yet it is not inevitable. I'd like to see this group encompass the entire Slavic world and then some (basically, including the area currently known as Central Europe, Eastern Europe, and the Former Soviet Union). Anything from Dalmatia to Dagestan, from Albania to Azeri.

Finally, an explanatory note on the bibliography. Several of the entries include initials in brackets. These initials refer to the fact that certain people in our group (the key is on the cover page) own copies of the book or article. If you cannot find a copy in your library, you might consider contacting the person who has the piece. No obligation or promise to lend, of course, is implied, but they may be willing to look up something for you.

New Books

An important resource that has come to our attention is Sergei M. Soloviev's History of Russia from Earliest Times is being translated and published by Academic International Press. Volumes of interest to us:
7: The Reign of Ivan III the Great
8: Russian Society in the Age of Ivan III
9: The Age of Vasily III
14: The Time of Troubles. Boris Godunov and False Dmitry
15: The Time of Troubles. Tsar Vasily Shuisky and the Interregnum
16: The First Romanov. Tsar Michael, 1613-1634
24: The Character of Old Russia

Only 15 of approximately 47 volumes have been finished. More volumes are being translated. Future releases of interest:
1: The Origins of Russia
2: Early Russia, 1054-1157
3: Medieval Russia. Politics and Society
4: Russia Under the Tatar Yoke, 1228-1389
6: Russian Society, 1389-1425
10: The Reign of Ivan the Terrible. Kazan, Astrakhan, Livonia, the Oprichnina and the Polotsk Campaign
11: The Reign of Ivan the Terrible. The Struggle Against Bathory and Expansion into Siberia
12: Russian Society Under Ivan the Terrible
13: The Reign of Tsar Fedor

The volumes are hardbound and new ones appear 1-2 times a year at a price of $35 in a limited edition of 800. For further information, contact: Academic International Press, PO Box 1111, Gulf Breeze FL 32562-1111. Fax: 904-932-5479. Email: Try to get your library to get the whole set!

If you don't know already, the Domostroi is now in paperback. Everyone interested in Russian customs, food, household economy, and social history, is heartily encouraged to pick up a copy. See the Bibliography for full citation.


Facets Video provides an absolutely fabulous collection of foreign (and foreign-theme) movies on videotape and laserdisk. They are not cheap (tapes cost around $59.95 and laserdisks are somewhat cheaper), but they will rent certain titles. Amongst their offerings:

Russia: Sword and the Dragon; Ivan the Terrible; Andrei Reblev (Restored); and Alexander Nevsky (Restored).

Poland: 1000 Years of Polish Cavalry; Casimir the Great; King Boleslaus the Bold; Krzyzacy: Knights of the Teutonic Order; and Four Seasons in Polish Cooking.

United States: Taras Bulba (with Yul Brenner in the title role!)

In addition, they have lots of definitely post-period stuff (including operas like Boris Godunov, etc.). You can get more information from them (including a catalog): Facets Video, 1517 W. Fullerton Ave., Chicago IL 60614.

Upcoming Events of Interest

March 29-30, 1996 -- Pennsylvania State University will hold a conference entitled, "The Medieval Slavic World and Its Impact on Present-Day Eastern Europe and Russia." Every year, Penn State does medieval history conferences, but this is the first time they have done a Slavic theme. If you live in the East, Middle, Atlantia, or Aethelmearc, you might want to consider going. Better yet, this conference is probably held in conjuction with Penn State's annual Slavic Festival! For more information, contact the Department of Slavic and Eastern European Languages at 814-865-1675 or 814-865-1352 or Email:

Computer Stuff

Point your browser to Vikings in Russia: Or, if you're feeling bored, you can check out the Viking Home Page (

Check out Tauna Aelswith's (Donna Bowers) web page:
"I have a how to on byzantine garb with biblio and patterns...I also have roman recipes and will be updating the recipes with what I can redact from the Domostroi."

Check out Paul Wickenden's (Paul Goldschmidt) web page: It's still under construction, but will eventually point you to a bunch of cool stuff.

Sasha Ivanov (Rob Sturtevant) offers computer space for an FTP or Web Page -- I leave it to someone else to contact him. "I've got 8 megs here I'm not doing a bloody thing with, and while I haven't the technical knowledge myself (yet) I'd be willing to help...." He can be reached at:

Kythe Szubielka (Mark Shubelka) reports that he has found the library of the University of Gdansk (Poland) on the Internet:
Telnet to:
Logon with: hello user.clas01
At the prompt, type: Indeks Tytnlowy zawiera
Then specify: t/reading history

After that you're on your own because you need to be able to pick out the english words because most of it is in Polish." (He adds that he'd love some help from someone who actually knows Polish!)


Sebastian Goral (Andrew Smith) writes: "I have read something about 'hairnets' from Henryk Sienkiewicz's The Teutonic Knights, 1905.... I know that he is OOP, but where would he get a reference like hairnets? Mainly just curious."

Nonna Von Bach (Nonna Perry) is looking for information (particularly costuming) on the Cossacks and the Russians.

Standard Disclaimer Stuff: Most of us are members of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc (SCA) but our Interest Group and its newsletter are not officially affiliated with the SCA. Naturally, then, this Newsletter does not have even the faintest intentional resemblance to anything that the SCA officially endorses. Any resemblance is, in fact, coincidental. Blah, blah.