The Linguistic Aspect of Liturgical Texts as Viewed by the Synodal Censorship

2022. № 2, 96-109

Maria V. Miroshnichenko

Vinogradov Russian Language Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences

(Russia, Moscow)



This work is devoted to the linguistic component of liturgical texts written in Church Slavonic during the Russian Church Synodal period. This component was a significant criterion affecting the result of the censorship review. New written liturgical texts were always inspected by Church authorities. The censorship became institutionalized as a result of Peter the Great’s reforms. In the Censorship Code (1828) there were some articles prescribing the language characteristics relevant to approval of new liturgical texts. Censors in the ecclesiastical committees in contrast to the secular ones had the right to correct grammatical and stylistic mistakes. Since at that time there were not normative grammar rules prescribed to censorship boards, censors corrected texts under their own view on Church Slavonic grammar. The process of examination was fully documented. Now the researchers studying the archive materials can infer: 1) The censorship boards affected the change of Church Slavonic, 2) The language weaknesses frequently led to disapproval of new liturgical texts.

For citation:

Miroshnichenko M. V. The Linguistic Aspect of Liturgical Texts as Viewed by the Synodal Censorship. Russian Speech = Russkaya Rech’. 2022. No. 2. Pp. 96–109. DOI: 10.31857/S013161170019846-9