Image - Liubech: Coat of arms. Image - Liubech castle (reconstruction). Image - Liubech: Saint Anthony's Cave. Image - Liubech: Saint Anthony's Cave (entrance).

Liubech [Ljubeč]. Map: II-11. A town smt (2001 pop 2,648) on the left bank of the Dnipro River in Ripky raion, Chernihiv oblast. One of the oldest towns in Ukraine, Liubech is first mentioned in the chronicles in 882, when it was captured by Prince Oleh. In the 10th and 11th centuries it was an important center of the Chernihiv region. It was the birthplace of Saint Anthony of the Caves, the founder of the Kyivan Cave Monastery. It was the site of the Battle of Liubech in 1015 and of the Liubech congress of princes in 1097 and a similar congress in 1135. Liubech was burned down by Prince Rostyslav Mstyslavych in 1147 and by the Cumans in 1157. It was annexed by Lithuania in 1356, and under the Union of Lublin it was transferred to Poland and became a starostvo center. The town played an important role in the Cossack-Polish War of 1648–57 and then came under Muscovy's rule. From then Liubech declined and lost political significance. In 1958 it became an smt. Today Liubech has a fruit-drying plant, a cheese workshop of the Ripky dairy, and a fish farm. Archeologists have discovered 16 settlements from the Neolithic Period, 6 settlements from the early Iron Age and Bronze Age (8th–2nd century BC), and 5 Slav settlements around Liubech. The remnants of the medieval castle have been uncovered, and a stone building from the 17th century has survived.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 3 (1993).]

Image - Liubech: Saint Anthony's Cave (interior).

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