Visualization of the Northern Black Sea region by the european voyagers: features, process, results


Viktor Filas


Introduction. Age of Enlightenment of the 18th century was characterized by interest in Eastern culture. Fashion on the eastern culture and educational traditions had greatly increased interest in the Northern Black Sea region, especially in Crimea. In addition, in European society there was a certain demand for visual information about the Northern Black Sea region. This demand was also warmed up by the events of the Russian-Turkish war of 1768-1774.

Purpose. The purpose of the article is to highlight the peculiarities of the process of accumulation of visual sources by European travelers, which recorded the historical reality of the Northern Black Sea region of the last quarter of the 18th – the first half of the 19th century.

Results. At the end of the 18th century – the first half of the 19th century the voyages were quite a popular phenomenon among representatives of the European aristocracy and ordinary wealthy people. These voyages were increasingly defined as a visual practice based on educational ideology. After the annexation of the Northern Black Sea region to the Russian Empire in the last third of the 18th century, the vast expanses of this region, which preserved a significant number of natural, cultural and historical monuments of various nations and epochs, represented cognitive interest and began to be included in the routes of these trips. The value of travel notes, in addition to describing the geography of travel, interesting facts and the ability to transfer the reader for hundreds and thousands of kilometers, added their visual support. This information contained memories of events, images, objects, which the traveler was dealing with and that were reflected in his mind.

Conclusion. We can divide the visual sources created during the private voyages of European travelers into three groups according to the fullness of the reflection of historical reality. The first group includes diary images that capture the state of the surrounding reality, which author saw. These images are not only on par with the text of fixing reality, but often a key informant where text specifies only shows the fact situation or phenomenon (J. Myunts V. Kyzyvetter). The second group consists of small visual notes, which reflects the bright scenes recorded by voyagers (S. Fovel, D. Shlyatter, R. Heber, Newham). The last, third, group includes individual works, preserved due to their replication (E. Alexander, L. Kasas). These works belong to the lost or still unknown primary complexes on the North Black Sea region theme.




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