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Iryna Synkova. Johann Boemus and his book „Mores, leges et ritus omnium gentium„

The article is dedicated to the book of Johann Boemus „Mores, leges et ritus omnium gentium (The manners, laws and customs of all peoples)”. This work was the first attempt in the early modern history to give the common picture of the human culture in the world. Boemus has given very laconic geographical and ethnographical description of the different countries of Europe, Asia and Africa on the base of the numerals works of the most authoritative ancient and Renaissance authors. The book of Boemus was an example for many universal (historian, geographical and ethnographical) description of the different countries and peoples of the 16th — 17th centuries.
Several chapters of the book „Mores, leges et ritus omnium gentium„ describe the countries of the East Europe: Poland, Lithuania, Russia etc. Boemus has used in the main the works of Enejus Silvius and M. Mechowski to write these chapters. The chapter„ About Russia and Ruthenia” illustrates the author method of Boemus. Using the information from the different sources he unites all in one story: geographic description of Ukraine, the customs of the political struggle in Nowgorod and the essay about Moscow and its inhabitants. Perhaps Boemus had only the fragmentary information about the far countries in the East Europe; he also could be deluded by the complexity of the historical ways of the local countries. The name Alba Ruthenia (White Russia) is mentioned in this chapter but the specifics of the author method of Boemus make to relate to his information very cautiously.
The chapter „About Lithuania” has the information about the Lithuanian and Belarusian lands of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, about the language, customs and religious believes of the local population, about the capital of the state – Vilnia (Vilnius).
Two fragments from the book of Boemus „Mores, leges et ritus omnium gentium” are published in the attachment to the essay: „About Russia and Ruthenia” and „About Lithuania”.