Ethnographic Map of Ukraine from Ukrainian Arts, (Edited by A. Mitz; published by the Ukrainian Youth

League (СУМ) of North America, Inc., New York, 1955; pg. 17).

Traditional Ethnic Regions of Ukraine

There are many different schemes of ethnic divisions of Ukraine, probably a many as there are ethnographers.  The system I have used on this website is based on that found in Vira Manko’s “Ukrainian Folk Pysanka,” but I have also divided Ukraine into three major areas, based on geographic and historical considerations:

Western Ukraine

            Полісся: Polissia region (western)                               

            Волинь: Volyn/Volhynia

            Сокаль:  Sokal’ (a small area with very distinct decorative traditions)

            Галичина: Halychyna/Galicia (Includes Opillia and Roztochia)

            Підляшшя: Pidliashia/Podlachia

            Холмщина:  Kholm region

            Поділля: Podillia region


Carpathian Ukraine:

            Буковина: Bukovyna region

            Бойківшина: Boiko/Boikiv region

            Гуцулщина: Hutsul region          

            Закарпаття: Zakarpattia/Transcarpathia          

            Лемківщина: Lemko region (including Priashiv/Priashiv)

            Покуття: Pokuttia region

“Greater” Ukraine:

            Кубань: Kuban

            Середнє Подніпров’я: Middle Dnipro (Dnieper) region                    

            Полісся: Polissia region (eastern)              

            Причорномор’я/Приазов’я: Prychornomoria/Priazovia (Black/Azov Sea regions)  

            Слобожанщина: Slobozhanshchyna region /Sloboda

I’ve written more about this scheme and these divisions here.

I’ve also posted a set of plates of traditional Ukrainian pysanky of Erast Binyashesky; you can find them here.

My Regional Pysanky

I’ve been working on my traditional regional pysanky, but only Volyn’/Волинь and a some of Lemkivshchyna (Лемківшина)  including Пряшів (Priashiv / Presov) have been posted to this site so far.  I’ve created lots of eggs from Cherkasy, Kyiv and Ternopil, so those should come on line soon, unless I get distracted.  Keep checking back.  Mind you, each time I think I’m done with a region (e.g. Volyn), I find more pysanky form new sources. 

I have also begun posting other people’s pysanky in this section. While in Ukraine in 2009, I photographed a collection of traditional Bukovynian and Hutsul pysanky, along with some malyovanky and other eggs from the collection of Ivan Balan.  I have been editing and organizing the almost 2000 photos, and some of them are now on line in the Bukovyna and Hutsul sections.  More will follow, as most of the pysanky were from the village of Roztoky, and have to be sorted and organized for publication.  

I have created an introduction to Ukrainian ethnographic regions, with maps and descriptions.  It includes links to information about and pysanky of those regions here on my web site. In each section, I have tried to include some ethnographic and historical information about the region, especially those that are located beyond Ukraine’s modern borders.

Under the photos of the traditional regional pysanky I have included, when known, the name of the pysanka, and its village and region of origin.  I have translated pysanka names, and regional names, but not the village/town names.  If you wish to transliterate them yourself, a handy pronunciation guide can be found here.

I have added a list of the sources for my patterns here (in progress); I will try to put the abbreviation for the source in the comments for each of the pysanky pictured.  Note that I said that I will try.

Finally, I have uploaded pattern sheets for traditional pysanky.  These can be found on the Traditional Downloads page.  The patterns are all based on pysanky from Odarka Onyshchuk’s book.

  Special Types        My Sources

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