“The city worthy of worship”: how Sebastopol got its name

“The city worthy of worship”: how Sebastopol got its name

Who inhabited the area and how has it evolved over its history from Ancient Greece to modern Russia.

People live on the territory of Sevastopol for over two millennia, but its current name of the city on the Black sea coast is relatively recent. The name change happened at the initiative of Catherine II, during her reign, the Crimean Peninsula became part of the Russian Empire. It happened on 21 February 1784, when begins the history of new Peninsula.

From the Chersonese to Sevastopol

In ancient times this land was inhabited by the inhabitants of a Greek city Chersonese. The settlement survived the invasion of the Goths and Huns, rebellions and Palace coups.

The earth several times he has won, including the Prince of Kiev Vladimir Svyatoslavich, who according to legend took does Orthodoxy.

Prior to joining Russia the territory of modern Sevastopol has not once appeared in the power of different Nations. Among the occupants were the Ottoman Empire, the expansion of which lasted several centuries, from 1475 to 1774. Everything changed with the arrival of the Russian Empire, which with the help of Sevastopol regained access to the Black sea.

After the Russo-Turkish war in 1774, the Crimean khanate had gained independence, although it is actually dependent on Russia, as its territory was located our troops. Khanate ceased to exist only in 1783, the Crimea, Kuban and sea of Azov officially became part of the Russian Empire.

“White ravine” and the choice of Suvorov

Immediately after the annexation of Crimea, the Empress Catherine II ordered to build a military port. The job she entrusted to captain Ivan Berseneva, sailed to the Peninsula on the frigate “Careful.” After seeing all of the Bay he made a choice in favor of a small settlement of Akhtiar.

The town was situated near destroyed the Chersonese. Next to them was a small Crimean Tatar village of AK-jar, after which the settlement got its name. Translated the name as “white ravine”. In Ahtari lived for a time the Russian troops, who sent Alexander Suvorov. “Like the harbour not only from the local Peninsula but in the whole Black sea is not there, wrote Suvorov, which fleet is better maintained and employees in the hold easier and safer placed to be able to”.

The city worthy of worship

The day of the founding of modern Sevastopol is considered to be June 14, 1783. Then was laid the first of four stone buildings of Sevastopol: the house in which he lived, the commander of the squadron of rear-Admiral of Scottish descent Foma Fomich Mackenzie, blacksmith shop, a chapel and jetty.

Supervised the settlement of the future Creator of the black sea fleet and the first commander-in-chief Grigory Potemkin. There he was sent by Catherine II. She’s 10, 1784, signed a decree, according to which the city received a new name — Sevastopol.

The name was translated as “the city worthy of worship”. The title “Augustus” in Greek sounded like “sevastos”, so it is often called Royal or Imperial city. Many scholars have linked the Greek name of Sevastopol with the ambitious plans of Catherine II. According to this version, Russia wanted to build on the black sea coast a new Empire, which is completely subordinate to the Russian. In Sevastopol they saw the capital, which would have placed the Palace of the President.

There is another, no less interesting history of the name. For the first time the Peninsula was given the name of Sevastopol in ancient times, when Caesar gave the Chersonese freedom.

Then the Roman Emperor Augustus named the city after himself — Sevastopol. But the name did not stick, and the settlement was given its old name.

Thus, Catherine II decided to give the capital of the new Empire the second name of the city, as Kherson in 1778 referred to another city.

When the authorities came to Paul I, Sevastopol again changed his name. The Emperor signed a decree, according to which the city began to be called Akhtiar. So he lasted 29 years, until in 1826, the Senate returned to Sevastopol its Greek name.

Up to the present day

Sevastopol survived several major battles from the Crimean war, which Hugo was compared to the siege of Troy, to civil conflicts in the period of the October revolution and the great Patriotic war.

In 1954 he entered a new milestone in the history not only of Sevastopol and the entire Peninsula. 19 February was the transfer of the Crimean oblast in the Ukrainian SSR. The reasons that prompted Russia to take this step, are still a topic of debate.

In March 2014, during the Crimean speech of Vladimir Putin called the initiator of the transfer of land to Nikita Khrushchev, adding that thus the first Secretary of the Communist party was trying to enlist “the support of the Ukrainian nomenklatura or to make amends for the organization of mass repressions in Ukraine in 1930-e years”. Among other possible reasons — the construction of the North Crimean canal, the post-war turmoil and the deteriorating economic situation in connection with labour shortages.

Sevastopol and the Crimea was returned to Russia only in 2014. After the change of power in Ukraine in the cities have been large Pro-Russian rallies, which led to a popular referendum.

March 16 in the Crimea for reunification with Russia voted 96,77% of the population of the Peninsula, the turnout was 83.1%. The next day the Sevastopol city Council, the referendum asked the Russian government to include the city in the Russian Federation. The Treaty of accession of Crimea and Sevastopol to Russia was signed on 18 March 2014. The agreement was concluded in the St. George hall of the Grand Kremlin Palace.