« 2018. #6 (144)

The Ethnology Notebooks. 2018, 6 (144),  1448–1455

UDK 398.88(=161.2=162.1):398.392.4](082)»1790»


Received 21.11.2018



Kharchyshyn Olga Mykhailivna, Candidate of Philology,

Senior Researcher, Department of Folklore Studies

at the Institute of Ethnology of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine.

15 Svobody Avenue, 79000, Lviv, Ukraine.

Contacts: Tel.: (032) 297-01-57; e-mail:

Abstract. Ukrainians and Poles have well-preserved traditions of carol singing — a collective choral performance of spiritual songs carols «koliada», dedicated to the Nativity of Christ. Christmas Carols also include the songs of book-based church origin. They are played and sung during the holiday period in temples, people’s homes, in many public places in live performances or in audio recordings of various musical resources. These songs create a festive atmosphere, uniting participants of celebrations. Carols of Ukrainians and Poles in a number of manifestations are characterized by a common origin, expressive features of neighbouring ethnic cultures. This article analyzes the state of preservation and modern life in the Ukrainian and Polish ethnic cultures of the Christmas carols «Nebo i Zemlia» («Heaven and Earth») («Dzisiay v Betleyem» («Today in Bethlehem»))), «V Yaslakh Lezhyt» («Lying in the manger») («V Zhlobie Lezhy» («Lying in the manger»), «Anhel Pastyriam Movyv» («The Angel Told Shepherds») («Aniow Pastezhom Muviw» («The Angel Told Shepherds»)) and others, first published in the collection of spiritual songs «Bohohlasnyk», published in the Pochayiv Monastery in 1790. Some carols of «Bohohlasnyk» had been spread before (known from the manuscript collections of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries), while others were original samples created by monks. Latin translations and borrowings from other Western languages took a remarkable place in the carol repertoire. It has been discovered that these and some other Christmas songs are a common property of Ukrainians and Poles, living simultaneously in two language versions. The tradition of enriching neighbouring ethnic cultures with new Christmas carols has been developing for centuries up to this day. Carols (in particular, their lyrics) undergo modifications due to the requirement of time.

Keywords: Christmas songs, carols, «Bogoglasnyk», Ukrainians, Poles, tradition, ethnoculture, life, mutual enrichment.


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