Things about Kharkov we are proud of! Part III
See Part I
See Part II
Who knows what would happen to provincial Kharkov, which had only a few stone buildings in the early 19th century, if not for the influence of Vasily Nazarovich Karazin? Because of him, Kharkov University appeared even before the University of Kiev. Kharkov was located in the center of an educational district, which included some of the Caucasian territory as well. Much can be learned from the cultural life of the city.
What do you think about this? The first lecture in Ukrainian in the Russian Empire took place in Kharkov. The first Ukrainian newspaper and magazine also appeared here. In relation to this it would be interesting to read H. F. Kvitka-Osnovyanenko. His writings contain Kharkov dialect with many Ukrainian words.
Kharkov’s cultural sphere is also quite rich. Kharkov photographer Alfred Fedetsky has shot the first Ukrainian documentary. His studio, located on Ekaterinoslavskaya Street (now named Poltavsky Shlyah) was the best in the city. In September 1896 he shot a series of stories about military and countryside life. His next theme was a train leaving Kharkov’s station. The first opera theatre and the first Shevchenko monument were also in Kharkov.
Kharkov was Ukraine’s cultural center due to people such as N.F. Sumtsov, A.P. Potrebne, H. F. Kvitka-Osnovyanenko, and many others. Following the rules of Bolshevik ideology during the Soviet times, people attempted to make Kharkov into an exemplary Soviet city. Gradually, common cultural consciousness of the Ukrainian people was changing.
Some architectural masterpieces have survived the Soviet regime, but many unique mansion buildings barely made it because they were considered bourgeois relics. Country estate architecture has suffered a lot of damage. Today the buildings are being restored very slowly, but they are a must see even in this condition! These architectural and cultural monuments (Sharovsky, Natalyevsky, and Novomechinsky) are unforgettable creations to be proud of. Visiting these places for the first time, people often exclaim, “Why haven’t we known and seen this before!” No one in Ukraine can imagine that this exists in Kharkov, moreover nowadays when Kharkov visitors mostly see modern buildings with luxury Kharkov apartments, surrounded by fashion boutiques and trade centers.
Based on all of the above we can see that the “first capital” of Ukraine is destined to have a complicated and interesting life. We are yet to gain deeper understanding of the city we live in. Kharkov’s inhabitants have much to be proud of and to show to the Ukrainian and foreign tourists.
PS: The most significant Kharkov events are listed here, primarily those that can be called “first”.
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