Hutsul Housing as Element of Material and Spiritual Folk Culture in Historical and Ethnographic Research

Keywords: house, dwelling, room, oven, wooden, Hutsul region, historiography, culture


The process of how the issue of the Hutsul house has been studied in the historical and ethnographic works of scholars of the 19th – early 21st century is highlighted in the paper. The author tries to find out what place the Hutsul housing occupied in the material and spiritual culture of the people.

The author has ascertained that one of the first researchers who tried to describe Hutsul housing systematically was a Ukrainian priest, writer, ethnographer of the 19th century S. Vytvytskyi. The research work was continued by R.Fr. Kaindl, Khvedir Vovk, V. Shukhevych, and others.

Interest in the study of Hutsul housing as an element of material and spiritual culture does not cease in modern science. It is stated that various scholars in their works have focused on the importance of the Hutsul house not only as a place where the peasant lives but also as a territory where folk rites take place, and fine arts can be found.

The composition of Hutsul housing and a description of its main elements are considered in the paper. The analysis of scholars’ works is presented on a chronological principle.

Based on the analysis of the studied works, one can come to the conclusion that the Hutsul dwelling is a logical continuation and part of the traditional Ukrainian wooden construction, which has been taking place since ancient Rus times, although with local specifics. The parts of the Hutsul dwelling interior were an oven, furniture, ceiling beams, and doorposts. These elements could be decorated with carvings and ornaments. Hutsul housing was not only a place of residence or a simple architectural building but also a sacred center that united the family and accompanied a person in everyday life, on holidays, or during sad events throughout life. Local features of Hutsul housing can continue to be the subject of historical and ethnographic research.


Bohomolets, O. (2006). Synkretychnyi kharakter domashnikh ikon Hutsulshchyny [Syncretic character of home icons of Hutsul region]. Relihiia ta Sotsium, 1-2 (21-22), 70-76 [in Ukrainian].

Danyliuk, A. (2003). Shliakhamy Ukrainy. Etnohrafichnyi narys [In the ways of Ukraine. Ethnographic essay]. Lviv: Svit. [in Ukrainian].

Domashevskyi, M. (1995. Istoriia Hutsulshchyny [History of Hutsulshchyna]. Chicago-Lviv: Hutsul Research Institute in Chicago [in Ukrainian].

Holubets, M. (1994). Mystetstvo [Art]. In Krypiakevych, I. (Ed.). History of Ukrainian culture. Kyiv: Lybid [in Ukrainian].

Hoshko, Y. & Fedaka, P. (1987). Poselennia [Settlement]. In Hutsulshchyna. Historian ethnography research. Kyiv: Naukova dumka [in Ukrainian].

Kaindl, R.F. (2000). Hutsuly, yikh zhyttia, zvychai ta narodni perekazy [Hutsuls: their lives, customs and folk tales]. Chernivtsi: Molodyi bukovynets [in Ukrainian].

Khotkevych, H. (1920). Hutsuly i Hutsulshchyna [Hutsuls and Hutsulshchyna]. Jersey City, N. J.: Svoboda [in Ukrainian].

Lomatskyi, M. (1961). Homin hutsulskoi davnyny [Murmur of Hutsul antiquity]. Munich: Logos [in Ukrainian].

Masnenko, V. & Rakshanov, V. (2012). Ukrainska khata. Naukovo-populirne vydannia [Ukrainian house. Popular science publication]. Cherkasy : Brama-Ukraina [in Ukrainian].

Radovych, R. (2020). Narodna arkhitektura [Folk architecture]. Ethnographic groups of Ukrainians of Carpathians. Gutsuls (pp. 34-35), Kharkiv : Folio [in Ukrainian].

Senkiv, I. (2014). Hutsulska spadshchyna. Pratsi z zhyttia i tvorchosti hutsuliv [Hutsul`s inheritance. Labours are with life and work of hutsul people], Chernivtsi: Druk Art; Verkhovyna : Hutsulshchyna [in Ukrainian]

Shekeryk-Donykiv, P. (2009). Rik u viruvanniakh hutsuliv [A year in the beliefs of the Hutsuls]. Verkhovyna: Hutsulshchyna [in Ukrainian].

Shukhevych, V. (2018). Hutsulshchyna [Hutsulshchyna]. Kharkiv: Oleksandr Savchuk [in Ukrainian].

Siletskyi, R. (1994). Silske poselennia ta sadyba v Ukrainskykh Karpatakh ХІХ – na pochatku XX st. [Rural settlements and estates in the Ukrainian Carpathians of the XIX – early XX centuries]. Kyiv: Naukova dumka [in Ukrainian].

Siletskyi, R. (2008). Tradytsiine selianske zhytlo ukraintsiv Halychyny na pochatku XX st. [Traditional peasant housing of Ukrainians in Halychyna in the early 20th century]. Halychyna: ethnic history. Thematic collection of articles. Lviv: Lviv Ivan Franko National University [in Ukrainian].

Smolinskyi, S. (1994). Hutsulska kurna khata [Hutsul smoky house]. Kraieznavstvo, 1, 48-51 [in Ukrainian].

Syvak, V. (2020). Interier narodnoho zhytla [Interior of the folk dwelling].In Ethnographic groups of Ukrainians of Carpathians. Gutsuls, (pp. 56-78). Kharkiv: Folio [in Ukrainian].

Vincenz, S. (2019). Na vysokiy polonyni. Kn. 1: Pravda staroviku [On a high meadow. Book 1: The truth of old age]. Kharkiv: Folio [in Ukrainian].

Vovk, Khv. (1995). Studii z ukrainskoi etnohrafii ta antropolohii [Studios from ukrainian ethnography and anthropology]. Kyiv: Mystetstvo [in Ukrainian]

Witwicki, S. (1876). Hucuły [Hutsuls]. Pamiętnik Towarzystwa Tatrzańskiego. Cracow: Towarzystwo Tatrzańskie [in Polish].

Wytwytskyi, S. (1993). Istorychnyi narys pro hutsuliv [Historical essay about Hutsuls]. Kolomyia: Svit [in Ukrainian].

Żukowski, J. (1935). Huculszczyzna: przyczynek do badań nad budownictwem ludowym [Hutsul region: a contribution to research on folk architecture]. Warsaw: Tow. Przyjaciół Huculszczyzny [in Polish].

How to Cite
VovkO. (2021). Hutsul Housing as Element of Material and Spiritual Folk Culture in Historical and Ethnographic Research. Eminak: Scientific Quarterly Journal, (4(36), 195-205.
Historiography, Source Study and Special Historical Disciplines