Kholops ( _ru. Холопы) were feudally dependent people in Russia between the 10th and early 18th centuries. Their legal status was close to that of slaves.

The word "kholop" was first mentioned in a chronicle for the year of 986. Its etymology is unclear. By one hypothesis, the word is cognate with Slavic words translated as "boy" (more specifically, adolescent male; modern Russian: хлопец ("khlopets"), Polish: "chlopak"), which actually matches the usage of the English word boy as "servant". The Serbian word "glupak" and the Bulgarian word глупак ("glupak") have the meaning of "simpleton, fool, blockhead". The Slavic word itself is derived from the hypothetical root "*chol" related to premarital state, unmarriedness, inability for reproduction. By another hypothesis, it is derived from a Germanic root, also present in the English "help".

The "Russkaya Pravda," a legal code of the late Kievan Rus, details the status and types of "kholops" of the time.

In the 11th - 12th centuries, the term referred to different categories of dependent people and especially slaves. A "kholop"’s master had unlimited power over his life, e.g., he could kill him, sell him, or pay his way out of debt with him. The master, however, was responsible for a "kholop"’s actions, such as insulting a freeman or stealing. A person could become a "kholop" as a result of capture, selling oneself, being sold for debts, after having committed crimes, or through marriage to a "kholop". Until the late 15th century, the "kholops" represented a majority among the servants, who had been working lordly lands. Some "kholops", mainly house serfs, replenished the ranks of the princely servants (including those in the military) or engaged themselves in trades, farming, or administrative activities. Throughout the 16th century, the "kholops"’ role in the corvée economy had been diminishing due to the increasing involvement of peasant exploitation ("see Russian serfdom"). At the turn of the 16th century, the service class "kholops" (служилое холопство, "sluzhiloye kholopstvo") began to emerge and spread across the country. In the late 17th century, there were also "kholops" "chained" to their land (посаженные на землю, "posazhenniye na zemlyu"), who took care of their own household and had to pay quitrent. Those "kholops", who had been house serfs, were subject to poll tax in 1722-1724 and were thereafter treated as ordinary serfs.

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Slavery in medieval Europe — Part of a series on Slavery Contemporary slavery …   Wikipedia

  • Slave rebellion — A slave rebellion is an armed uprising by slaves. Slave rebellions have occurred in nearly all societies that practice slavery, and are amongst the most feared events for slaveholders. Famous historic slave rebellions have been led by Denmark… …   Wikipedia

  • Serfdom — Serf redirects here. For the Saint, see Saint Serf. For SERF magnetometer, see SERF. Part o …   Wikipedia

  • List of slaves — Slaves redirects here. For the 1969 drama film, see Slaves (film). Part of a series on Slavery …   Wikipedia

  • Russkaya Pravda — Ruskaya Pravda ( ru. Русская правда, Russkaya Pravda ; Archaic: Правда Роська, Pravda Ros ka ; uk. Руська Правда, Rus ka Pravda ) was the legal code of Kievan Rus and the subsequent Rus principalities during the times of feudal division. While it …   Wikipedia

  • Russian serfdom — The origins of serfdom in Russia are traced to Kievan Rus in the 11th century. Legal documents of the epoch, such as Russkaya Pravda, distinguished several degrees of feudal dependency of peasants. Traditionally, the term for a peasant of the… …   Wikipedia

  • Ivan Bolotnikov — Ivan Isayevich Bolotnikov (Иван Исаевич Болотников) (? 1608) was the leader of the uprising of 1606 1607 (Bolotnikov rebellion, Восстание Ивана Болотникова), which was part of the Time of Troubles in Russia. Bolotnikov was a fugitive kholop (a… …   Wikipedia

  • Church of Cosmas and Damian — The Church of St. Cosmas and Damian on Kholop Street (Russian: Церковь святых Кузьмы и Демьяна на Холопьей улице), was a church in medieval Novgorod the Great located in the Nerev End, just north of the Detinets. It was a wooden church first… …   Wikipedia

  • Abolitionnisme — Benjamin Robert Haydon Convention de la Société contre l esclavage, Londres, 1840. L abolitionnisme est un courant de pensée qui émerge dans le dernier tiers du XVIIIe siècle dans le monde occidental …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Chemin de fer clandestin — Les routes empruntées par le chemin de fer clandestin. Le Chemin de fer clandestin (Underground Railroad, en anglais) était un réseau de routes clandestines construites par les esclaves noirs américains pour se réfugier au delà de la ligne Mason… …   Wikipédia en Français