glossary
The Russian words listed here are used in The Face of Russia television programs.
chelobitnaya beating of the forehead on the ground, especially before a ruler; a custom based on the kow-tow, inherited from the days of Mongol rule
domovoi a pagan god, a house spirit, sometimes visualized as an elongated carved wooden statue, whose presence is necessary to protect a home
dvoeverie dual belief; the simultaneous faith in both the pagan gods of nature and the Christian God and saints
dvor the court; an open space
dvorianin aristocrat or courtier
kremlin a strong place or fortified citadel within a city
mir literally, world; in tsarist Russia, a village community or gathering of peasants
nebo heaven; in wooden Russian Orthodox churches the nebo is a circle at the center of the ceiling, made of wedge-shaped holy pictures
podvizhniki spiritual heroes
pokayanie repentance; also the name of an anti-Soviet film of the Gorbachev period by Georgian director Tengiz Abuladze
prostite “forgive me”; said by Russians to each other in church before taking Holy Communion
pustyn literally, a desert; remote church built by missionary monks in the northern regions of Russia; one of the numerous links between Russian Orthodoxy and early Semitic Christianity
sobor gathering; also, cathedral
sobornost sense of spiritual communality; one of the distinctive features of Russian Orthodoxy
troika a Russian sleigh or carriage pulled by a team of three horses running abreast
volia naroda literally the will of the people; also the name of a revolutionary group formed in 1879 and responsible for the assassination in 1881 of Alexander II


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