Hut of Slobozhanshchyna

Slobozhanshchyna – Hut of Slobozhanshchyna


Hut from Kolyadivka village (isolated farmstead Malymoniv or Holodiv) of Novoaidar area, Luhans’k region

The first records of Cossack settlements on the lands of Slobozhanshchyna date back to the beginning of the 16th century. Extensive occupation of these territories, which now are the part of Luhans’k region, has been conducted mostly by settlers from the Right-Bank and Left-Bank Ukraine during the times of Het’manshchyna (Ukrainian Cossack State existing from the second half of 17th to the second half of 18th centuries). Besides Ukrainians in these lands also settled Russians, Moldavians, Bulgarians, and representatives of other nationalities. They all brought to the region culture, customs, and traditions of their own. Even nowadays, next to Ukrainian villages exist Russian settlements where the language, traditions, and rites have been preserved.



The name of the village Kolyadivka comes from the name of sotnik Kolyada who settled in this region in 1730-1732. According to the written sources and the local legends, Kolyada was a robber. But it is known that as far back as in the 17th century here had existed a village which in 1708 was burned; the name of the village is unknown. It is also known that in the second half of the 18th century near Kolydivka on the right bank of the Yovsuh river Cossack Holod had settled, and later Cossack Malymon joined him. In accordance with local legends, they were farmers. They settled by the well which had existed there before witnessing an earlier settlement. The well has been preserved until nowadays.


Coming from different parts of Ukraine, people brought and preserved traditions of folk architecture, trades, handicrafts, customs, and rites. However, due to local geographical conditions and natural resources new traditions emerged here as well. In different areas of Luhans’k region, in addition to peculiar for Ukraine framework and pise buildings, people constructed dwellings of stone and other local materials.

The hut from Kolyadivka village represents folk architecture, everyday life, trades and customs of Slobozhanshchyna. The hut comprises both traditional for entire Ukraine planning and specific local peculiarities. The hut consists of four rooms: a living room (which was traditionally called hut), hatyna (kitchen), an anteroom, and a storeroom. Under the hut is a large cell of stone.

Traditionally in each hut in pokut’ (sacred corner) there were placed many icons decorated with embroidered or woven towels and dry flowers. In this hut the two icons of the 19th century are presented – “Intercession of the Holy Virgin” and “Trinity of the New Testament” produced in the monastery workshop of Starobil’s’k. The other icon depicting “the Three-handed Mother of God” has been painted by local artists. There is also a traditional folk picture painted on glass hanging on the wall nearby.



By the walls stand the benches. In the middle, closer to pokut’, is placed the table covered with tablecloth of two pieces hemstitched in the middle. There are two ceramic bowls on the table. Between the table and the bed stands a trunk decorated with specific painting of Slobozhanshchyna region. On the trunk lie various items of homespun linen. Among them are a traditional shirt decorated with plant ornament embroidered with cross-stitch, a tablecloth decorated with hemstitch work, towels, and homespun linen. Various kinds of homespun linen are also presented on the stove.

In the left corner by the stove stands a wooden bed with sackcloths, towels, traditional women’s and men’s shirts embroidered with cross-stitch, and a set of women’s outer clothing lying on it. Above the bed there is a cradle hanging on the ceiling.


On the wall by the bed hangs a carpet of the 19th century brought by settlers from Poltava region. The carpet is woolen; it is decorated with stylized plant ornament on black background.

On the hearth are presented decorative pottery of Poltava region, a pot of local production, and a metal iron. To the right of the entrance there are tools for spinning yarn of hemp, flax, and wool: a spinning wheel, a comb, spindles, a reel, etc.

There are two doors in the hut, one leading to the anteroom, another – to hatyna (the “kitchen”).


Traditionally there is an icon decorated with a towel in hatyna too. The towel is adorned with plant ornament. Certainly, the main part of hatyna was a stove. By the stove in the corner are placed rohachi (instruments for pots handling), pokers, and a wooden spade for bread. In this area there are a lot pots and other ceramic ware as well.

Near the stove by the window stands a table laid with a linen tablecloth. On the table there are various vessels and ladles plaited of rod for taking dumplings out of the pot. Opposite to the stove stands a painted trunk of local production. In the corner there is a large cupboard. There are pegs for cloths fixed on the wall near the entrance and a towel rail attached by the stove.


The second door in hatyna leads to the anteroom. In the anteroom various farm implements as well as wood-working, cooper’s, and blacksmith’s tools are presented.

Having briefly familiarized yourselves with interior of the hut from Luhans’k region, you can get an idea of diversity and versatility of culture in another part of Ukraine – Slobozhanshchyna.