09 July 2006

Territories of the Carpathian Rus

Carpathian Rus/Karpats’ka Rus’
Carpathian Rus/Karpats’ka Rus’ — territory historically inhabited by Carpatho-Rusyns. It covers approximately 18,000 square kilometers located along the southern and, in part, northern slopes of the Eastern Carpathian mountain ranges, stretching about 375 kilometers from the Poprad River in the west to the upper Tisza/Tysa and Ruscova/Rus’kova rivers in the east. According to present-day boundaries this territory is divided among Poland, Slovakia, Ukraine, and a small part of Romania. Carpathian Rus’ may be subdivided into four regions, whose boundaries are determined by the states in which each is located: the *Lemko Region (in Poland), the *Prešov Region (in Slovakia), *Subcarpathian Rus’ (in Ukraine), and the *Maramureş Region (in Romania).

Both the concept of Carpathian Rus’ and its territorial extent have varied. During the second half of the nineteenth century scholars in the Russian Empire (Iakiv *Holovats’kyi, 1875; Ivan *Filevich, 1895; Fedor *Aristov, 1916) understood Carpathian Rus’ to include “Russian-inhabited” lands within the Habsburg Empire, that is, all of eastern Galicia and northern Bukovina as well as Ugorskaia Rus’ (i.e., Subcarpathian Rus’ and the Prešov Region in Hungary). As early as 1850 the Rusyn historian Andrei Deshko understood the term Carpathian Rus’ to include only Rusyn-inhabited lands in the Hungarian Kingdom (Subcarpathian Rus’ and the Prešov Region). At the close of World War I, however, Carpatho-Rusyn political leaders, in petitions submitted along with maps to the Paris Peace Conference (1919), defined Carpathian Rus’ to mean Subcarpathian Rus’, the Prešov Region, and, on the northern slopes of the mountains, the Lemko Region (as far east as the San River).

Paul Robert Magocsi

Entry courtesy of Encyclopedia of Rusyn History and Culture.


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