A bearded story. As Peter I was trying to teach the townspeople to shave
17 APR 1722 Peter I introduced sue beards for the believers. A man is not willing to part with such “decoration” for religious reasons, had to pay for it considerable for those times money — 50 rubles per year.
One of the most famous bearded men in history, the English naturalist and Explorer Charles Darwin called the beard decoration that enhanced the attractiveness of males in the eyes of the opposite sex. Over the years, the symbol of masculinity has got a new meaning, becoming the sign and shows a certain social status of its owner and even talking about his financial position.
In different times the authorities tried to take control of the beards of its citizens. So, in Ancient Egypt it afford could only Pharaoh. In the Roman Empire the opposite — the facial hair was considered a sign of “wild” peoples. And in Orthodox Russia of the XVII century “Brodarica” considered effeminate and suspected of tendency to sexual orientation.
Beard for 100 rubles
Rules of wearing beards was enshrined in many documents, and for the damage it violently even supposed to considerable fines. So, for example, in the collection of legal norms of Kievan Rus, who went down in history as the “Russian truth”, said that for damage to a mustache or beard, the offender will have to pay as much as 12 rubles.
For comparison, for killing a man was supposed to amount only to three times more.
Therefore, the innovation of Peter I, who decided radical ways to engage in the Europeanization of the country, disguised men in German dresses and depriving beard, was seen by many as an insult and encroachment on the Holy of holies. It happened after the return of the king from a trip to Europe. In 1699, after the promulgation of the decree the young king defiantly cut beard of several representatives of noble families. Such “violence” has caused a wave of indignation in the society which got used to a different way of the pious Christian.
To stem public anger, leaving the bearded kind of choice, Peter in 1705 he issued a decree according to which the clergy were allowed to keep beards, and the rest you had to buy the right to carry it.
The document has established a fee that was supposed to make the beard depending on the position in society. It is known that the townspeople and servants had to pay 30 rubles a year, the merchants of medium and small articles, policemen, nobles, courtiers and townspeople — 60 rubles per year.
Most expensive bortovoy sign cost foreign merchants — 100 rubles per year.
For this amount he received a kind of receipt metal token — “bortovoy penny”.
It should be noted that the duty not levied peasants, however, wanting to visit the city, they were at the entrance each time to pay 1 penny for the beard.
Hard labor or a beard?
Over time, the rules were tightened in December 1713 he issued a decree imposing a strict ban on the wearing of beards and Russian clothing. The same stubborn people who dared to disturb him, waited for jail and the beating of whips.
Some changes have been made by the believers. According to the document, which was signed on April 17, 1722, they established a strict dress code. They had to wear the coat with the standing collar, farazi long sleeves, no interception, and outerwear — doradcy. Wearing the same beard because of religious beliefs was estimated at 50 rubles per year.
It is known that anyone who noticed a bearded man in another suit, was able to detain him and take him to the commandant. Then the vigilant citizen was supposed monetary reward — half of the amount of the fine.
If the bearded man had nothing to pay the fine, the guilty were exiled to work in Rogervik (Baltic port), and Siberians Siberian factories, but exiled were released, as soon as gave a subscription that will shave the beard and go will not wear it.Nikolai Kostomarovskiy
It should be noted that there were schemers who were trying to follow the Imperial decree only half: they did not shave, but cut their beards. Such “offenders”, however, soon figured out. It was decided to refer them to the bearded man, and demand from them the fulfillment of the law.
Historians have noted that in June of 1723, the “under the guard” turned out a lot of the merchants and burghers, who, because of lack of money could not afford to buy bortovoy sign, and shaving never wanted.
Years later the writer Fyodor Dostoyevsky, analyzing this period in history, wrote:
“Russian people do not like to chase vneshnostyu: he most appreciates the spirit, the idea, the essence. And the transformation was such that extended to his clothing, beard, etc. People and renounced his well-wishers reformers, not because, of course, loved the beard, chased by clothing, and because such a conversion technique was not in his spirit. And the stronger was his encroachment on, the stronger he rallied, and sank. Beard and clothing has become something of a slogan. Maybe it was under the influence of such circumstances and has developed in our man so unyielding, hard, rigid nature”.
It should be noted that after the death of Peter the Great by his decree operated for more than half a century. Canceled some provisions of his Catherine the great in 1722. According to a later edition, without the beard had to go the the upper class, government officials, government people and courtiers.