Among the finest products of early Ukrainian literature were the Lives of the first Rus’ saints, including Boris and Glĕb, Feodosij of the Caves Monastery, Avraamij of Smolensk, and Ol’ga and Volodimer.
Drawing on Byzantine, Church Slavonic, and Latin literary traditions, the Rus’ hagiographers fashioned religious narratives that were at once traditional and tailored for a specifically Rus’ audience. These hagiographical works, as well as a number of related texts, are now translated into English and collected in a single volume for the first time.
Paul Hollingsworth provides a lucid introduction that discusses each saint and his or her cult in the historical as well as social contexts and examines the literary and textual features of the Rus’ vitae. The translations are accompanied by copious historical and philological notes, an extensive bibliography, a map, and several indexes.