MOSCOW, 10 March (BelTA) – Simeon of Polotsk's book “The Rod of Reign” published in 1667 has returned to Belarus. The solemn handover ceremony took place in Moscow on 9 March, during a meeting between Ambassador of Belarus to Russia Vladimir Semashko and Archimandrite Oleg (Cherepanin), the head of the mission of the Russian Orthodox Church in Thailand, BelTA has learned.
The Rod of Reign was first published in 1667 in line with a resolution of the Great Moscow Synod. This literary work is a well-reasoned answer to criticism and objections of Old Believers who opposed the church reforms of the 1650s, which led to the schism in the Russian Orthodox Church.
Archimandrite Oleg told journalists that Simeon of Polotsk's book had been part of a private library of a parishioner of a church in Rostov. In her will the parishioner signed her library away to Archimandrite Oleg after her death. He gave most of the books to a museum in Yaroslavl Oblast but decided that this rare book by Simeon of Polotsk should belong to Belarus.
Most likely, the book will be kept in Polotsk, Ambassador Vladimir Semashko said. “The book should become part of Belarus' national treasure, not part of a private collection,” Archimandrite Oleg noted.
In 2013, the National Library of Belarus prepared and published a two-book edition of this work by Simeon of Polotsk. The first book recreates the original look of “The Rod of Reign”. The second one contains an article about the significance of the work and its translations into the modern Belarusian and Russian languages.