Bratslav

Bracław (Polish), Bratzlav, Bratslaw, Brazlaw, Braclav, Broslev, בראָסלעוו (Yiddish), Браслав – Braslav (Formerly), Брацлав (Ukrainian), Брацлав – Bratslav (Russian)

Bratslav is a townlet in Ukraine, located in the Nemyriv Raion of Vinnytsia Oblast, by the Southern Bug river. It is a medieval European city which dramatically lost its importance during the 19th-20th centuries.

Beginning

Bratslav was founded in 1362 by duke of Lithuania Algirdas. A Jew leased the collection of customs duties in Bratslav in 1506, and it appears that a Jewish settlement developed in the town from that time. In 1545 the Jews were exempted from the construction of roads “so that they could travel on their commercial affairs.” The Jews underwent much suffering during the attacks of the Tatars on the town during the 16th century (especially in 1551).

Bratslav market square on old post card. 1-house of merchant Goviy-Lyser Bratslavskiy, 2-house of merchant Aron Khaimovich Krasnoshtein
Bratslav market square on old post card. 1-house of merchant Goviy-Lyser Bratslavskiy, 2-house of merchant Aron Khaimovich Krasnoshtein

At the beginning of the 17th century, commercial relations were maintained between the Jews of Bratslav and those of Lvov. In the Councils of the Lands, Bratslav was attached to the “Land of Russia,” of which Lvov was the principal community.