Kamyanets-Podilsky

Administrative center of the Kamyanets-Podilsky Raion, Khmelnytsky Oblast, in Western Ukraine (48°40′56″N 26°34′57″E), 102 km (63.4 mi) south of the oblast's capital, Khmelnytsky. The capital of Ukraine from March 22, 1919, to November 1920. Located within the National Nature Park "Podilski Tovtry," the old town sitting on a rock surrounded by the Smotrych River's Ω-shaped canyon, with the ancient fortress protecting the approach to the town over the unique ancient bridge along the same bank of the Smotrych on both sides – Kamyanets-Podilsky is one of Ukraine's most popular tourist destinations. Historical region: Podillya (Podolia).

Population: 103,036 in 2011 (ethnic composition, according to the 2001 census: Ukrainians, 91.2%; Russians, 5.9%; Poles, 0.6%; Belarusians, 0.3%; Jews, 0.2%).

Area: 27.871 sq km (10.761 sq mi).

Established: late 12th c. – early 13th c.

First mentioned: 1374.

Member of the Association of Local Governments "The Gediminids’ Way" since its establishment on May 10, 2013.

Official site of Kamyanets-Podilsky:
www.kam-pod.gov.ua

Tourist site:
www.muzeum.in.ua

Photo albums:

  • Kamyanets-Podilsky
  • Kamyanets-Podilsky, Ukraine, Jan. 17, 2014. General meeting of the Association of Local Governments "The Gediminids' Way"

  • There are four hypotheses on the foundation of Kamyanets-Podilsky, conventionally called Lithuanian, Armenian, Dacian-Roman, and Old-Rus (pre-Mongolian).

    According to some sources, Kamyanets-Podilsky was first mentioned in 1062. In the 13th–14th centuries, the town was part of Kyivan Rus within the Principality of Galicia–Volhynia. It was captured by Mongols in 1241.

    There are archeological evidences, too, dating the Kamyanets-Podilsky Fortress to the 11th–12th c.

    However, according to the Lithuanian hypothesis, the history of Kamyanets-Podilsky begins with the victory of Grand Duke of Lithuania Algirdas, a son of Gediminas, in the Battle of Blue Waters (1362 or 1363) over the Golden Horde's three "petty kings": Hacı Bey, Kutlug Bey and Dmitr.

    In 1374 the town received the Magdeburg rights from two nephews of Algirdas, dukes Yuriy and Oleksandr of the Karijotid dynasty. The charter signed by them "on the castle of Kamyanets" is considered to be the first reliable written document that mentions Kamyanets on Podillya.

    The reign of the Karijotids in Kamyanets lasted until 1393, when Vitautas the Great, Grand Duke of Lithuania and another son of Gediminas, by storm took the town over from Fedir. After the death of Vitautas, on the Buczacki magnates' initiative, in the fall of 1430 pro-Polish nobles of Podillya by guile captured the town in favor of King of Poland and former Grand Duke of Lithuanian Władysław II Jagiełło (Jogaila), a son of Algirdas.

    In 1434, following the defeat of Grand Duke of Lithuania Švitrigaila (Jogaila's brother), who had tried to regain castles and towns of Podillya taken by the Poles in 1430-31, Kamyanets ultimately fell under the power of Poland. Kamyanets-Podilsky was vested with the functions of the main city of the Podillya Voivodeship, Kamyanets Powiat and same-named starostwo.

    Monuments from the epoch of the Gediminids and GDL that have survived in Kamyanets-Podilsky:

    • Kamyanets-Podilsky Fortress (12th–18th c.)
    • City Hall (Polish Magistrate House) (14th–16th c.)
    • Trinity Monastery (14th–16th, 18th–19th c.)
    • Tower of Stephen Báthory (16th c.)
    • Dominican Monastery and St. Nicolas Church (15th–18th c.)
    • Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul (15th–17th c.)
    • Franciscan Monastery (14th–19th c.)
    • Pottery Tower (1583)
    • Ruthenian Gate (15th–18 c.)
    • Slaughter Tower (16th c.)
    • Armenian Bastion (16th–17th c.)
    • Upper Polish Gate (1565–1785)
    • Lower Polish Gate (15th–16th c.)
    • Turkish (Castle) Bridge (first mentioned in 1494)