The paper is devoted to the problem of Catholics’ adaptation to the life in non-traditional communication environment of Saint-Petersburg in the first half of the XVIII century. The author applies a multidisciplinary approach that allows her to consider the subject of the research from a position of different sciences using a wide range of scientific methods: the principles of historicism, of scientific objectivity; the historical-comparative method; the method of historical content analysis and the method of typology. Using the concept of U. Thomas and F. Znanetskiy, the author proposes a typology of groups within the Catholic community, each of which had characteristic features in the process of adaptation to a new communicative environment: "active minority" and "inert majority" groups were allocated, the latter of which included two subgroups –"inclusive community" and "traditionalists". Analysis of the preserved metric books from St. Catherine of Alexandria Church, devoted to baptisms and weddings, allowed the authors to trace the social relations of St. Petersburg Catholics and to characterize the selected groups. The author concludes that a significant part of the Roman Catholic community of St. Petersburg belonged to the so-called "inclusive community", which expanded their social networks imitating the "active minority", who created behavior models for the adaptation process. These models contributed to the gradual process of assimilation of foreigners-Catholics, as well as to their adaptation to the life in the communicative environment of Saint-Petersburg in the first half of the XVIII century.
Keywords: Roman Catholic communityCatholicsSt Petersburgforeigners in Russiaadaptationcommunicative environment
The construction of St. Petersburg in the early eighteenth century is Peter the Great’s socio-cultural experiment aiming at creation of a unique space where languages, customs and manners were mixed like in the "pot", as a result creating a new communicative environment. During the Northern war, the city became a place of attraction for foreigners, many of whom became the "vanguard" of the Peter’s reforms. Peter’s large-scale reforms of rebuilding Russia following the western pattern led to major changes in political, social and cultural life of the country. To ensure the foreigners’ comfortable stay and activities in the country, in St. Petersburg in particular, the government had to abandon the policy of "religious isolationism", which was typical for the previous period. It contributed to the formation of new inter-confessional relations in Russia, and Catholics became active participants there. Once in the alien environment, they created a microsocium (Catholic community) that allowed them to adapt smoothly to the new social reality.
Russian historiography demonstrated the interest in the study of the Roman Catholic Church history in the second half of the nineteenth century (Tolstoy, 1859; Tolstoy, 1876; Tolstoy, 1865) (Moroshkin, 1967-1870). However, until now there has been no comprehensive research on the history of the Roman Catholic community of Saint Petersburg. Only in the last few years, some works on the history of the Roman Catholic communities in the city have been published. A significant contribution to the study of this issue was made by A. N. Andreev, who raised the problem of studying the Roman Catholic communities in Russia and St. Petersburg in the XVIII century (Andreev, 2004; Andreev, 2007; Andreev, 2014a; Andreev, 2015). In turn, the problem of Catholics’ adaptation to the communication environment of Saint-Petersburg in the XVIII century was not considered in modern historians’ works. In terms of increasing religious tensions in Russia and in the world caused by the current geopolitical conflicts in the middle East and in the former republics of the Soviet Union, the growth of migration flows in Europe, studying the experience of foreigners-Catholics’ "getting used" to the communicative environment of St. Petersburg of the XVIII century may be useful for the search of ways of peaceful coexistence of different faiths’ representatives and of religious diversity preservation in the modern world, undergoing the process of globalization
The object of research
The authors are considering the process of Catholics’ adapting to St. Petersburg environment in the first half of the 18th century.
The subject of research
The subject of the research is considered to be the Roman Catholic community of St. Petersburg during the period under review.
Purpose of the Study
The aim of this work is to distinguish the characteristic features of Catholics’ adaptation process in the communicative environment of Saint-Petersburg in the first half of the XVIII century basing on the analysis of the registers in St. Catherine of Alexandria Church.
The authors apply a multidisciplinary approach that allowed them to consider the subject of the research from a position of different sciences using a wide range of scientific methods: the principles of historicism, scientific objectivity, which gave an opportunity to study historical phenomena in their development and relations. The comparative-historical method allowed to include the history of the Roman Catholic community functioning in Saint Petersburg in the context of historical development of Russia in the first half of the XVIII century. The historical method of content analysis allowed to analyze registers records of births in the Roman-Catholic Church of St. Catherine of Alexandria as fully as possible; the method of typology made it possible to trace the degree of change in Catholics’ behavior in St. Petersburg.
At the beginning of the XVIII century, the number of Roman-Catholic community representatives was about 70 people (year 1709) and with the growth of the city it amounted to 2000 people by the end of 1740-ies. The Roman Catholic community of Saint Petersburg was characterized by a diverse ethnic composition: the community consisted of Germans, French, Italians, Poles, Serbs, Armenians, English, Scots, Czechs, Dutch, etc. However, record keeping of the Synod Chancellery documents and the College of Foreign Affairs, the data of births registers, as well as the information provided to the Congregation in the letters of members and missionaries state that a large part of St. Petersburg's Catholics belonged to four ethnic groups, namely the French, the Poles, the Italians and the Germans. Moreover, the latter community was the largest which was obvious from the reports of missionaries and indirectly confirmed with the information about baptisms. (Andreev, 2014b) (Samylovskaya, 2016) Thus, the structure of the microsocium under analyses (Roman Catholic community of Saint Petersburg in the first half of the XVIII century) was very complex.
To analyze the Catholics’ adaptation process to the new communicative environment it seems possible to use the concept of William Thomas and Florian Znanetskiy, according to which the community can be divided into structural components for various reasons. This concept was developed by researchers to study the migration processes from the point of view of the analysis of the migration and migrants’ adaptation consequences. The subject of the researchers’ study was the Polish immigrants in America in the late XIX – early XX centuries. In their fundamental work "The Polish peasant in Europe and America" , W. Thomas and F. Znanetskiy examined and analyzed the personal documents of 28 families of Polish peasants (letter and autobiographies) and then identified three types of migrants’ behavior in the process of adapting to life in a new environment, namely: "
The first type, "philistine", identifies the people who demonstrate the behavior with orientation to the stability of their lives based on an appeal to tradition and custom. In turn, any situation that goes beyond the traditional one becomes a threat to them. In the case of going beyond the traditional situations, the representatives of this type are lost, disoriented. Therefore, in case of contact with the alien environment, this type is trying to look for support in custom and tradition.
Representatives of the second type, “
The hallmark of "
Unlike the developers of the concept of U. Thomas and F. Zanetskiy, we do not have personal documentation of St. Petersburg Catholics at our disposal in sufficient quantity. However, the analysis of the Roman Catholic churches construction in St. Petersburg, as well as the analyses of conflicts within the community conducted in the author’s previous works allows to allocate two groups within the community: those of "active minority" and "inert majority".
We shall consider the first group of "active minorities". The main function of this group was to create a "cultural environment" (a behavior model for the process of foreigners-Catholics’ adaptation in St. Petersburg in the first half of the XVIII century). The "active minority" were the smallest group.
The second group – the "inert majority" - was by far the biggest with the number of their representatives (more than 50%). The primary function of this group was in "perception" of ideas and copying the behavior models and patterns regenerated by representatives of the first group.
We shall note that the "inert majority" includes two subgroups: "inclusive community" and "traditionalists". "Traditionalists" had the most striking function of storing patterns of behavior and national identity. Compared to them, the second subgroup –"inclusive community" – was less inert and open to news perception. Thus, in the process of adaptation, the subgroup "inclusive community" was more susceptible.
The provision that the "inert majority" group one way or another had a characteristic function of preserving the national identity is the justification of assigning a separate structure within the considered on a national basis one, i.e. the system of national sub-groups embedded in a system of separation of functions.
To characterize these groups it seems quite justified to analyze the social relations of St. Petersburg Catholics.
Analysis of births registers of in St. Catherine of Alexandria Catholic Church in St. Petersburg showed that in the majority of cases, approximately 20-30% of parents chose only the representatives of their national groups to be godparents (with the exception of the Poles). In turn, approximately 70-80% of them invited members of other national groups. Therefore, despite the quarrels in the community on a national basis, metric data indicate the existence of close communication in the everyday life between different nationalities representatives. Thus, for example, the French who complained of the Germans willingly invited those to be the godparents (the Germans were the second most popular godparents among the French). The Poles even more preferred the Germans as the godparents for their children, though they would seem to have infringed their rights in the community. It appears that the reason for this lies in the following: Catholics, who by the nature of their activities often communicated with representatives of different nationalities, often invited the latter to be the godparents. Thus, the choice of godparents for children depended on the place of a Catholic’ work and on the degree of his communicativeness in the professional field.
For example, among the godparents of the German engraver Erhard of Eelgrasses’ children it is possible to meet the names of the architects Domenico Trezzini, Gaetano Chiaveri, Joseph Trezzini, the wife of the engraver Franz Ludwig Ziegler and an artist Johann Gottfried Tannauer. (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 1. File. 27, l. 5, 9 verso) (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 2. File. 1, l. 23, 28). The French engraver Nicolo Pino invited a painter Louis Caravaque, an architect Gaetano Chiaveri (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 1. File. 31, p. 10, 19) and others. An Italian merchant Giuseppe Mariotti was three times the godfather for the Dutch merchant, John van Acker’s children [15, p. 18, 22, 34.] and three times for the Italian merchant Bernardo Lezano (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 1. File. 31, l. 37., 40, 48), and the latter was the godfather for the merchant Julem Giambelli (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 1. File. 31, l. 47).
Another feature for a number of St. Petersburg Catholics was the presence of their close ties with the Russian nobility representatives. So, representatives of the Russian nobility willingly acted as godparents for St. Petersburg Catholics’ children. For the period of 1710-1740 and 1746-1749 the metric shows 29 baptisms, during which Russian nobles acted as godparents of the Catholics’ children. The records show such names as: A. D. Menshikov, A. V. Kikin, P. P. Shafirov, P. P. Yaguzhinsky, P. G. Chernyshov, I. A. Shcherbatov, M. M. Golitsin, A. I. Trubetskoy, A. I. Rumyantsev, P. A. Rumyantsev, A. K. Vorontsova and others. (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 1. File. 31, p., l. 2, 2 verso, 3 verso., 6 verso., 8, 9, 10, 11, 17 verso., 25, 26, 26 verso., 38 verso ,42 verso., 50, 52, 52 verso., 53., 55., 56., 59., 63, 63). (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 2. File, l. 1, 3 verso., 4 verso., 5 verso)
A frequent phenomenon for St. Petersburg Catholic community was international marriages. According to the above mentioned register book of marriages, in the period from 1746 to 1749 Catholic priests conducted 39 wedding ceremonies (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 1. File. 27, l. 24-69), of which 18 (46 %) were mononational (i.e. husband and wife belonged to one nation), and 21 (54 %) – were inter-ethnic.
In addition, the Petersburg Catholics though it was quite common to marry a Protestant. This is evidenced by the data found in the above mentioned registers of baptisms. Out of 861 baptisms, held from 1710 to 1740 and from 1746 to 1749, 23 cases (2.7 per cent) the child's parents belonged to different Christian denominations (father – Catholic, mother –Protestant). ceremonies (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 1. File. 27, l. 17- 22 verso) (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347. Inv. 1. File. 31, l. 1-68); (The central State Historical Archives of St. Petersburg Fund 347.inv. 2. File. 1, l. 8). A vast majority of Catholics married Finns-Lutherans.
As you can see, here is another specifics of Catholics’ adaptation to the life in a new communicative environment – the emergence of close interfaith relations, in particular, it was manifested in marriages between Catholics and Protestants.
Metric records analysis showed that this source clearly demonstrates the division of the Catholic community into groups and subgroups. The selected "active minority" group is characterized by wide ethnic and religious social connections. In addition, the national subgroups of "inert majority" demonstrate the presence of average 20-30% of "traditionalists" who prefer to communicate solely among members of their own subgroup. Based on the thesis that the "active minority" is always much smaller than all the others, it can be assumed that a significant part of the Roman Catholic community of St. Petersburg belonged to the so-called "inclusive community", which, imitating the "active minority", expanded their social networks. This was facilitated by the specifics of the community, the place of Catholics’ work, their social status, as well as internal and external policy of the Russian government. All this, of course, contributed to the gradual process of foreigners-Catholics’ assimilation, as well as their adaptation to life in the communicative environment of Saint-Petersburg in the first half of the XVIII century.
Thus, the process of foreigners-Catholics’ adaptation took place with different speed and results, due to the specifics of the emigrants’ assimilation models of social behavior and values.
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19 February 2018
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Samylovskaya, E. A. (2018). On Catholics Adaptation Problem In Non-Traditional Communicative Environment Of Saint Petersburg. In I. B. Ardashkin, N. V. Martyushev, S. V. Klyagin, E. V. Barkova, A. R. Massalimova, & V. N. Syrov (Eds.), Research Paradigms Transformation in Social Sciences, vol 35. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 1145-1151). Future Academy. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2018.02.135