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Mykola Zharkikh (Kyiv)

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Nicholas Zharkikh

I represent the case of the appearance of "Beneshevich’s Excerpts" in the following way. The records on this sheet were kept under metropolitan Photius and were intended for him, therefore they were written in Greek.

Records began to be conducted approx. 1420 (the 14th indict fell on the reign of Photius only once – in 6929, from September 1420 to August 1421). Perhaps the record of the gift of prince Mikhail Drutsky was made during the last trip Photius to Lithuania in 1430.

After the death of Photius in 1431, the next metropolitan Isidore appeared in Moscow only in 1437 and tried to find out where the property of the late Photius had disappeared during this time. So there were records of the property of the "late metropolitan", also in Greek, because they are intended for reading by the Greek Isidore. When in 1441 Isidore left Moscow (already without hope of returning), he took with him an archive, among which was a sheet of draft records – "Excerpts." In Rome, Isidore began drawing up his papers, and at the same time the sheet of "Excerpts" was filed to Code No. 840.

How did historians interpret the records of the "Excerpts"?

The first hypothesis was put forward by Priselkov and Vasmer (1916).

This hypothesis, despite its obvious weakness, was enthusiastically received by the following historians (the list of works was made by E. V. Rusina [Rusina E.V. Pseudo-Kievan princes of the 13th-15th centuries. – In the book: Rusina E.V. . – К.: 2005, pp. 64 – 66]).

E. Rusina put forward another hypothesis, according to which the deceased metropolitan was Maxim († 1305).

Another version of the interpretation of excerpts was offered by the Parisian researcher Konstantin Zuckerman [Zuckerman K. . – "The Belarusian Padzvinne", Navapolatsk, 2014, part 2, p. 147 – 148]. Rightly rejecting metropolitan Theophilus as a pretender to the place of the "deceased metropolitan", K. C. confidently believes that all the records of the "Excerpts" relate to Theognost, and he was also "the deceased metropolitan."

The general conclusion for historiography is quite sad: most researchers preferred to follow the path of least resistance, uncritically perceiving the once formulated hypothesis and turned a blind eye to its weak points.