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Busk Angels

Anyone who has ever visited Busk in Lviv region, in any case, falls on the market – a cultural phenomenon of a provincial town, where sellers from all over the region come together, as well as those for whom Busk is a transit point to the surrounding villages.

Not the transit point, but the end point of the route for merchants and artisans was that glorious Buzhesk described in the “Tale of Bygone Years” as the center of the city with a well-fortified hillfort.


The market in Busk, from which the acquaintance with the city of the author of these lines began, forms a communicative environment – if you want to meet a friend, go to the market. It is especially noisy here on Tuesdays and Fridays. These are the so-called market days. The polyphony of the city with a population of about 8.5 thousand people is now growing, apparently, to the level of everyday Lviv.

It becomes noticeably more crowded in Busk before family holidays, for example, before Epiphany, when they managed to visit there. Mistresses crowd around the shelves with mountains of still warm bread, men scurry around in front of tanks with live fish. Only Adil, a seller from Azerbaijan, complains about the bargaining. To his improvised counter with ripe persimmons and juicy pomegranates are not suitable. Adil sighs: “For some reason today they are not to me!”

Local Belarusian Vladimir walks along the ranks. He carefully monitors the order and as soon as he sees the “strangers”, he immediately approaches and asks about the “purpose of the visit to the Bus market.” It’s difficult to identify me, the guy with the camera, so I get a loud “warning” in the form of “Pan, good afternoon!”


Buske has a huge city park, which locals allowed to walk with the advent of the Soviet occupation power. Our readers, whom I meet here, do not neglect this right. They are just slowly returning from the market in the company of dogs.

Busk’s Angels In the park, adjacent to the territory of the Badeni Palace, once smelled of flowering relic and exotic trees and shrubs. Tulip trees, in particular, were brought here even in count times. Seventy plant species grew in a “multicultural” environment – but that was once. Since then, the city’s society has also become more monocultural.

As Ivan Tsikhotsky, a local historian, associate professor of the Ukrainian language department of the Ivan Franko Lviv National University and collector, later said in the territory of a modern city park on the highest hill there was the very first castle, hence the name of the area – Podzamce. Later, the castle was built on the spot where the bus station is now located. This territory was adapted for all kinds of fortifications thanks to the hilly landscape with deep ravines and six rivers: the Western Bug, Poltva, Solotvina, Rokitnaya, Rudnaya and Moldova. Due to the large number of rivers, the city was called the “Galician Venice”.

The cape, on which the castle was built as a symbol of the Polish conquest of Galicia, was artificially “cut” to form a peculiar island. The castle was small in size, surrounded by ramparts. Inside was located the city office, which served as the settled center of the Busk headman. During the 2015 archaeological season, archaeologists unearthed the remains of ramparts, about forty XIV century crossbow arrows and other weapons in the upper layers of the cultural layer. In the lower layers, at a depth of four meters, ancient Russian burials of the 12th-13th centuries and a lot of glazed figured ceramic tiles from the church floor were found. The foundations of the temple itself have not yet been found. And it’s not scary – all the townspeople go to baptismal churches at Baptism.


In a suburb of Volyana, on a high hill, stands the wooden church of St. Onufry of 1642. And around the church is a cemetery. In a thousand-year-old oak tree that three strong men can clasp with their hands, they made a chapel. The temple, along with the bell tower, was entered into the register of architectural monuments of national importance under security number 1342. Pan Ivan recalls that a cast-iron table has hung on the church recently since Soviet times, on which the security number was indicated. In its place they “riveted” some kind of plastic with the inscription “UOC-KP of St. Onufriy”. He says that you need to call the priest to find out why they removed the old one.

Busk’s Angels The church was erected on the site of a former castle. Here was a Russian castle of the 11th-12th centuries with a 3-4-meter palisade. It was burned in 1241 and then not restored. From here, the center of Buska is still clearly visible. Now we walk along the remains of bulk shafts and we can’t even imagine that this land remembers the victories of the Ukrainian people, the fire and the great death. Only a piercing wind and probably the deepest waterless ravine in Busk will recall this.

In the early 2000s, interiors were restored in this temple. The work was carried out by unprofessional restorers, who upholstered everything with plywood and applied modern painting. Because of this, the church has lost its surroundings. But a very old iconostasis was preserved – the altar part – the middle of the XVII century.

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