Transcarpathia is the only part of Ukraine situated beyond the Carpathian Mountains. Accessible to the main territory of Ukraine through numerous mountain passes, it joins Ukraine with the core of East-Central Europe. Transcarpathia encompasses two different natural regions, the Tysa Lowland and the picturesque southern watershed of the Ukrainian Carpathian Mountains. The Slavic colonization of Transcarpathia began in the 2nd century, with migration from the north across the mountain passes. By the 8th and 9th centuries the lowlands of Transcarpathia were fairly densely peopled by White Croatians (at the time inhabiting both the north and the south side of the Carpathians). In the 10th century, Transcarpathia came under the sphere of influence of Kyivan Rus'. Following its incorporation by Prince Volodymyr the Great into his realm, the name Rus' or Ruthenia became entrenched in Transcarpathia. In the 11th century most of Transcarpathia came under Hungarian rule. Ukrainians constituted the majority of the region's population, but they were a minority element among its aristocracy. Deprived of a political structure and social elite the Transcarpathian Ukrainians preserved their ethnic identity principally through their religious distinction. Mukachevo was the seat of an Orthodox Mukachevo eparchy (first mentioned in 1491), the religion of which was merely tolerated in Hungary, and the clergy and monasteries of which were dependent on the goodwill of the local gentry. Despite its political separation the spiritual contacts of Transcarpathia with other Ukrainian lands were close. Liturgical and theological books published in Kyiv and Lviv were used widely in Transcarpathia and in the 17th and 18th centuries a local religious literature developed there, resembling in character Ukrainian baroque literature, with minor Hungarian and Slovak influences. It was not until the early 1920s that Transcarpathia was established as a separate administrative region. The Ukrainians' struggle for self-rule resulted in the creation of the autonomous Carpatho-Ukraine on 11 October 1938. On 12 February 1939, elections to the first parliament of Carpatho-Ukraine took place in which the Ukrainian National Alliance won a resounding victory. However, on 14 March 1939, Adolf Hitler entrusted Hungary with the occupation of Transcarpathia which marked the actual beginning of the Second World War... Learn more about Transcarpathia, its history, cities, inhabitants, and natural resources by visiting the following entries:

TRANSCARPATHIA. A historical-geographic region in southwestern Ukraine, incorporating the southern slopes of the Carpathian Mountains and a portion of the adjoining Tysa Lowland. Until 1919 Transcarpathia denoted that part of Hungary where Ukrainians lived, and the synonymous terms Hungarian Ruthenia (Uhorska Rus') and Hungarian Ukraine (Uhorska Ukraina) were widely used. Bounded by the ethnographic boundary with Romanians and Hungarians in the south and Slovaks in the west, the region encompassed 15,600 sq km. After the First World War Transcarpathia was separated from Hungary, and the bulk of its territory was formed into an autonomous region within Czechoslovakia called Subcarpathian Ruthenia (Pidkarpatska Rus') or Carpatho-Ukraine. A small part of Transcarpathia, located south of the Tysa River became part of Romania (Maramures region); in Transcarpathia's western reaches, the Presov region was allocated to Slovakia. A narrow strip of Hungarian ethnographic territory was added to Carpatho-Ukraine. Within Czechoslovakia Transcarpathia played an important geopolitical role as the bridge linking Czechoslovakia with Romania. At the same time it separated Hungary from its traditional ally, Poland. Later, Transcarpathia provided the USSR with a foothold in the Pannonian Plain. Beginning in 1938 the borders of Carpatho-Ukraine underwent a number of changes. After the Vienna Arbitration, Carpatho-Ukraine was transferred as a dependency to Hungary. Within the borders of Ukraine Transcarpathia occupies almost the same territory as it did within prewar Czechoslovakia, with a slight increase in the southwest around Chop. It constitutes a separate administrative unit, Transcarpathia oblast, with a territory of 12,800 sq km and a population of 1,258,155 (2018)...


UZHHOROD. A city (2019 pop 114,897) on the Uzh River and the capital of Transcarpathia oblast. According to the archeological evidence the site was inhabited as early as the Stone Age. A Slavic tribe of White Croatians founded a fortified settlement there in the 8th or 9th century. Early in the 10th century it was controlled by the Hungarians and then by Kyivan Rus'. Hungary regained control of the town in the 11th century and remained the dominant influence there until the 20th century. Uzhhorod was sacked by the Tatars in 1242, and its fortress was destroyed. Its economy was initially based on wine-making industry, agriculture, and animal husbandry. Trade and manufacturing, stimulated by the town's military and administrative needs, developed through the 15th to 18th centuries. The religious struggle of the 17th century culminated in the Uzhhorod Union of 1646. The Austrian Habsburg dynasty won control of Uzhhorod in 1691, and the city became involved in Hungarian attempts to throw off Austrian rule--in the Rakoczi uprising of 1703-11 and the Revolution of 1848-9. With the defeat of the revolution the Ukrainian cultural movement in Uzhhorod gained strength for a time. The Society of Saint Basil the Great, the Uniia publishing society, and Ukrainian schools were established. In 1848 the city was granted self-government, and began the process of modernization. With Transcarpathia's incorporation into Czechoslovakia after the First World War, Uzhhorod became the capital of Subcarpathian Ruthenia, the seat of the governor and the administration, and a center of Ukrainian life...


MUKACHEVO. A city (2019 pop 85,881) on the Liatorytsia River and a raion center in Transcarpathia oblast. The site has been settled since prehistoric times. Archeologists have discovered settlements in the vicinity from the Neolithic Period, the Bronze Age, the Iron Age, and the Slavic period (8th-9th century AD). In the 10th century Mukachevo belonged to Kyivan Rus', and in the 11th century, to Hungary. The fortress, rising high above the town, was destroyed by the Cumans in 1086 and by the Tatars in 1241. It was rebuilt by Prince Fedir Koriiatovych, who also built Mukachevo Saint Nicholas's Monastery. By the end of the 14th century Mukachevo was an important manufacturing and trading center on a trade route between Hungary and Galicia. In 1445 it was granted the rights of Magdeburg law. Because of the monastery the town became a cultural and religious center in the 15th century, and until the end of the 18th century it was the seat of the Mukachevo eparchy. Owing to its strategic location Mukachevo was contested frequently by the Habsburg dynasty and Transylvanian dynasty in the 16th and 17th centuries. At the end of the 17th century the town was annexed by Austria. It flourished in the 18th century and became the chief trade center in Transcarpathia. Mukachevo played an important role in the revolutionary movement of 1848–9. After the First World War the city belonged to Czechoslovakia. Its importance diminished whereas that of Uzhhorod grew. In 1938 Mukachevo came under Hungarian rule. By a Soviet-Czechoslovak treaty of June 1945 Transcarpathia became part of Soviet Ukraine...


KHUST. City (2017 pop 28,473) and raion center in Transcarpathia oblast, situated on the Khustets River in the Maramures Basin. It arose in the 10th century at the foot of a mountain of volcanic origin, on which a Hungarian castle was built from 1090 to 1191 to control access to salt mines 50 km away near the future town of Solotvyna. It was razed by the Mongols in 1242 but was soon rebuilt. Khust belonged to the Principality of Galicia-Volhynia from 1281. In 1321 Hungarian rule was restored. In the 16th and 17th centuries the Habsburg dynasty and the Transylvanian princes fought each other for control of the town and its castle. It was besieged by the Crimean Tatars in 1594, 1659, and 1717, the Poles in 1657, and the Turks in 1661-2. Prince Ferenc II Rakoczi took the town in 1703 and convened a Transylvanian diet there in 1709. The castle burned down after lightning hit its gunpowder tower in 1766. A Ukrainian People's Council was founded there in November 1918. On 21 January 1919 the 425 delegates of the All-People's Congress of Hungarian Ruthenians in Khust created the Central Ruthenian People's Council and voted to unite Transcarpathia with Ukraine. From 1919 to 1938 the city belonged to Czechoslovakia, from 1928 as a county center. Branches of the Prosvita society and Dukhnovych Society were established there. After Hungary occupied southwestern Transcarpathia, in November 1938, the autonomous Carpatho-Ukrainian government headed by Avhustyn Voloshyn was evacuated from Uzhhorod to Khust, which became the capital of Carpatho-Ukraine...


BEREHOVE or Berehovo. A city (2019 pop 23,732, with a substantial Hungarian population), located in the Tysa Lowland; raion center in Transcarpathia oblast. Founded as a Saxon colony in the 11th century AD, Berehove is situated in Hungarian ethnic territory (before the Second World War Ukrainians constituted 10 percent of the population in Bereg komitat [Berehove county]). Under Czechoslovak rule it was a center of Ukrainian cultural life in southern Transcarpathia. A Ukrainian gymnasium was situated here. Berehove has furniture, clothing, brick-and-tile, and ceramics plants and a wine and food industry. Vineyards are located nearby. A 15th-century Gothic Roman Catholic church is located in the city. Berehove is a centre of cultural life of the Hungarian minority in Ukraine. A Hungarian pedagogical institute, the Transcarpathian Hungarian Institute--the only institution of this kind in Ukraine--is located in Berehove...



VYNOHRADIV. A city (2018 pop 25,462) on the Tysa River and a raion center in Transcarpathia oblast. Until 1946 it was known as Sevliush or Sevluš. The settlement originated in the 9th century around the Slavic fortress of Kanko. At the end of the 11th century it came under Hungarian rule and was renamed Sevliush. At the end of the 17th century it was annexed by Austria, and in 1919 it was awarded to Czechoslovakia. Officially part of Ukraine since 1945, it was granted city status in 1946. Today the city is an industrial and communications center. It is the home of the Elektron Manufacturing Consortium, a plastic sanitary-products plant, and sewing, footwear, canning, and cheese factories. Its architectural monuments include the remains of the medieval castle, the Perenyi palace (15th century), a Franciscan church (14th–15th century), and a 16th-century Church of the Elevation of the Cross...


The preparation, editing, and display of the IEU entries dealing with the history, cities, and natural resources of Transcarpathia were made possible by the financial support of the CANADIAN FOUNDATION FOR UKRAINIAN STUDIES.

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