Information about the author:
Marina I. Shcherbakova
Marina I. Shcherbakova, DSc in Philology, Professor, Director of Research, А.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 а, 121069 Moscow, Russia.
ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6705-8707
The article deals with the letters introduced into scientific circulation for the first time, relating to the prehistory of the New Athos Simono-Kananite Monastery in Abkhazia. The head of the Black Sea coastline, Baron Alexander Ivanovich Budberg, fulfilling the request of Innokenty, Archbishop of Kherson and Taurida, informed him in 1849 about the state of Christian shrines on the Black Sea coast. The letters testify to the desire of Archbishop Innokenty to revive not only in the Crimea, but also outside the peninsula, the most ancient Christian shrines, monuments of ancient Greek colonies. In this regard, the correspondents are discussing the conditions and possibilities for the restoration of the shrines of Abkhazia, their historical and archaeological research, the preparation of a project for the revival of the Pitsunda temple, the establishment of a monastery and a spiritual mission under it, the mission staff, in the choice of which is no less important than education, is the knowledge of local customs and languages, the habit of climate. This idea “could not be abandoned for its lofty and pious purpose,” but in the middle of the 19th century favorable time for the first steps of the restoration of Christianity in the Abkhazian land has not yet come.