« 2021. # 5 (161)

The Ethnology Notebooks. 2021. № 5 (161), 1050—1062

UDK 398.3:664.6( 477.87-2=161.2)

DOI https://doi.org/10.15407/nz2021.05.1050

STAGE OF EXTRACTION OF BREAD FROM THE OVEN IN FOLK BAKERY OF UKRAINIANS OF ETHNOGRAPHIC VOLYN IN THE END OF XIX — EARLY XXI CENTURY

ZIUBROVSKYI Andrii

  • ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2221-3731
  • Candidate of Sciences in History, Senior Researcher,
  • the Institute of Ethnology of the National
  • Academy of Sciences of Ukraine,
  • the Department of Historical Ethnology,
  • 15, Svobody Avenue, 79000, Lviv, Ukraine,
  • Contacts: e-mail: anzjubr@gmail.com

Abstract. The extraction of bread from the oven was the final stage of the baking cycle of the Ukrainians of ethnographic Volyn. This stage, according to rudimentary worldviews about the analogy of baking bread with the life of man, was associated with its symbolic «birth». The object of research is the stage of taking bread out of the stove in baking process of Ukrainians of ethnographic Volyn, and the subject is folk customs, rites, traditions, technological prescriptions and signs that accompanied the taking of pastry from the stove and completed the baking cycle, their typology and probable semantics. The methodological basis of this exploration is general scientific methods of historical-comparative, typological, as well as methods of deduction and induction analysis. Special emphasis is placed on the use of specific ethnological methods: field ethnographic research (interviews, photo-fixation). A significant amount of author’s field ethnographic materials is introduced into scientific circulation. Extremely insufficient study of the issue is the main relevance of the theme. Therefore, the purpose of this exploration is to fill gaps in this field of ethnography, by identifying typological, semantic-semiotic and, partly, genetic-evolutionary sources of the origin of the custom of the stage of extraction of bread. The author comes to the general conclusion that the syncretic custom of the studied stage is based on archaic layers of pre-Christian commemorative beliefs of Ukrainians associated with honoring the souls of deceased relatives, ideas about the afterlife, and the rudiments of elemental cults, especially honoring of fire. At the extraction stage, the newly created product — bread  was symbolically inscribed in the space of the developed living expanse. Also, from a realistic point of view, through various behavioral prohibitions, the very probability of acquiring bread with uncharacteristic taste, consumer or aesthetic qualities (for example, a ban on putting aside, etc.) were impossible. This stage of baking also had a special remote programming purpose, namely to provide a link to the next baking cycle and predict its successful completion. As for the rational component of the bread extraction stage, it is based on deep empirical knowledge of Volynians, and Ukrainians in general, regarding organoleptics and biochemistry of bread, thermal characteristics of the oven.

Keywords: bread, oven, flour, firewood, fire, water, steam, stove bottom, hell, otherworld.

Received 7.08.2021

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