« 2021. # 2 (157)

The Ethnology Notebooks. 2021. # 2 (158), P. 262—277

УДК 392.31(477.41/.42)”19″



  • Сandidate of History (Ph. D),
  • Head of Department of Ethnology,
  • State Scientific Center of Cultural Heritage Protection
  • from Technogenic Catastrophes 
  • 21, Vyshgorodskaya st., 04114, Kyiv, Ukraine,
  • e-mail:


The system of kinship of the traditional Ukrainian society was not limited to consanguinity (loodline) spiritual kinship and relationship by marriage. It provided for kinship on the basis of common interests, place of residence or the performance of a certain rite some rituals. Therefore, the study of the family-ceremonial kinship links is relevant, as they allow to create a holistic picture of the social ties of the traditional Ukrainian village. The goal of author is to analyze the main stages and mechanisms of creation of new family-ceremonial kinship links. The object of the research is a ritual of family cycle, as a component of the folk culture of Ukrainian. The subject is family-ceremonial kinship ties. The methodological basis of work is objectivity and historicism principles. The methods for typological, complex and retrospective analysis, historical reconstruction were used to process field and archival, ethnographic and folklore materials.

The source base of the research consists of the author’s field materials and recordings of other scientists of the State Scientific Center of Cultural Heritage Protection from Technogenic Catastrophes in comprehensive historical-ethnographic expeditions on the territory of Polissіa, during which the material was recorded through oral interviews of respondents according to a prepared questionnaire. The theme of creating new family-ceremonial kinship is not sufficiently highlighted in special scientific researches. This aspect is recovered by authors rather superficially, without proper analysis; therefore the basis of the work is the author’s field materials.

Results. An analysis of all components of maternity and ritual kinship allows us to conclude that there was a longevity and strength of this social connection between the midwife and the woman in labor. This connection was fixed on a verbal level through the use of special terms: grandmother and grandson. These terms have been part of the active lexicon of women forever.

The midwife visited the woman several times after giving birth. Later, she visited her grandmother-midwife on calendar holidays (Christmas, Easter) and on weekdays.

We have identified two locations where the main meetings provided by this type of kinship — the mother’s house and the midwife’s house. The women felt it was their moral duty to help their midwife (bringing food, working the vegetable garden) and to visit on her funeral days and funeral.

Keywords: family-ceremonial kinship, midwife, woman in labor, kinship terms.


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