Ostrog - XXX-21

  • Year: 1890
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Sources on Jewish communities in this section:


Острог  Ostroh [Ukr], Ostrog [Rus, Yid], Ostróg [Pol], Ostraha, Ostrih, Ostra, Ostre

JewishGen Locality Page

Brockhaus-Efron Jewish Encyclopedia  Ostrog (אהרטםא, ארטםוא) - during the era of Polish rule, a city in the Volyn Voivodeship, Lutsk Povet.

The Jewish community of O. is one of the oldest in Volyn; it most likely arose at the end of the 14th century. The earliest surviving epitaphs

date back to 1444. From the acts of 1532 it is clear that local Jews traded in cattle, which they brought from Wallachia in exchange for cloth

and other goods from Poland. By the middle of the 17th century. The Jewish population increased rapidly and, according to the chronicler,

there were about 1,500 Jewish householders. The double invasion of the Cossacks (1647-1650) put an end to the well-being of the community.

So, in August 1647, the Cossacks attacked about 600 people who did not have time to escape from O. and killed them; in February 1649,

when the Jews returned to O. and began to rebuild their destroyed homes, the Cossacks came here a second time, at the call of the

townspeople, and massacred all the Jews, about 300 people, except for three who managed to escape (the chronicle of ןויה טיט states that

the first time, about 1,500 families were massacred by the Cossacks, and the second time, about 200 families, but the first version, belonging

to N. Hanover, who himself was among the fugitives, is more plausible). Three wells were filled with murdered babies; the great synagogue

was turned into a stable; the houses of the Jews were destroyed to the ground, because the Cossacks hoped, according to the assurances

of the townspeople, to find great wealth, allegedly buried by the Jews. On one of the outlying streets of O., to this day there are four hills in the

form of mass graves, in which, according to local legend, some martyrs are buried. The extent of the devastation can be judged by the fact that

after 12 years there were only five Jewish houses in the city. Little by little, however, a new community began to organize again, and in 1666 a

deputy from O appeared on the Vaad of four countries in Przeworsk. In 1678, the Sejm, wanting to come to the aid of a city “destroyed to the

ground and leveled to the ground,” confirmed rights and privileges given by former kings to the local burghers, both Christians and Jews. There

is a legend, partially confirmed by documents (תוחילם) dating back to the era of the Haidamachin (1734-68), about an attempt by peasants from

nearby villages to organize a pogrom in O. The peasants hid their weapons in carts; the guards, suspecting nothing, let them through. When

they arrived at the market square, one Jewish woman noticed a weapon. The Jews turned to local Tatars for help (Tatarskaya Street still exists

in O.), who, for a monetary reward, came to the rescue and arrested the peasants. By noon, crowds of peasants from nearby villages began to

flock to the city to rob, but, having learned that the plan had been discovered, they hastened to leave the city. For a long time, acute Jews

celebrated this day (חםפ לש גח ורםא). A series of poems and psalms, in memory of this day, is still read in the large synagogue.


Межирич  Velyki Mezhyrichi [Ukr], Mezerich Gadol [Heb], Międzyrzecz [Pol], Mezeritch [Yid], Mezhirichi [Rus], Meseritz, Mezerich Korets,

Mezyrycz Korecki, Międzyrzec Korzecki, Międzyrzecz Korecki, Międzyrzec Wolyn, Mezeritz Gadol, Mezhirech, Mezirici  

JewishGen Locality Page

Brockhaus-Efron Jewish Encyclopedia  Mezhirich is a town in Volyn province, Rivne district. According to the revision of 1847 “Mezhirichsk 

Jewish society" consisted of 1,808 souls. According to the 1897 census, there were 3,131, among which were 2,107 Jews.