|• Total||20 km2 (8 sq mi)|
|Elevation||105 m (344 ft)|
Myrhorod (Ukrainian: Миргород) is a city in the Poltava Oblast (province) of central Ukraine. Serving as the administrative center of the Myrhorodskyi Raion (district), the city itself is also designated as a separate raion within the oblast, and is located on the river Khorol.
The town was founded either in the 12th or 13th centuries as an eastern border fort of Kievan Rus'. According to legend, the fort was a place of peace negotiations that gave it its name (literally the City of Peace).
Myrhorod was first mentioned in chronicles in 1575 when Stephen Bathory, King of Poland made it a regiment city. According to some[who?] historians, there was an earlier mentioning of the city in 1530, when the city coat of arms were established - yellow cross over an eight-pointed star, which signifies the victory of Christianity over Islam.
Myrhorod was the regimental base of the Myrhorod Cossacks who were very active in several Ukrainian Cossack uprisings, particularly during the peasants'-and-cossacks' revolt of 1638 under the leadership of Hetman Yakov Ostrianytsia against the Polish nobility (szlachta). The Myrhorod Cossack regiment was among the best units in the army of Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky during the Khmelnytsky Uprising (1648–1654).
Since the beginning of the 20th century, Myrhorod is also known as a resort town for its underground mineral waters lodged inside the layer of rocks deposited during the Jurassic period. Commercial drilling for this ecologically pure water started in 1927.
In 1999, an English [Language] Resource Center was established at Myrhorod School #9, one of four such centres opened in Ukraine with the continuous help from Siena College since 1995. Other contributors to this project were Americans for Democracy in Ukraine (ADU), Canadian Credit Bank, and Narodna Kasa from Montreal, Canada. In 1995 a group of Myrhorod teachers, former participants at the seminars conducted by methodologists from Siena College Teacher Training Institute, organized Poltava Oblast's English Teachers' Association. The Myrhorod English Resource Center is supervised by the local Teachers' Association.
"Myrhorodska" water is described as "slightly mineralised natrium chloride water". It is completely clear and tastes a little odd, part of the taste being attributable to what is, in effect, table salt. Many other dissolved minerals also contribute to the taste and, of course, it is the precise balance of these that is thought to produce the claimed health benefits. For its unique health curative effects, "Myrhorodska" water is recommended by doctors for people suffering from gastritis, colitis and other disorders of the digestive system, particularly those with a lower level of stomach acidity than is considered average. It is also widely drunk as table water because it quenches thirst effectively and produces general effects considered to be beneficial to health.
There are several health resorts in the town (at least four). The most extensive and by far the best equipped of these is 'Myrhorod Kurort' (Ukrainian: Миргород Курорт). This particular spa consists of four individual sanatoria, each one specialising in one or more distinct areas - diabetes, cardiovascular disease, ENT, gastrointestinal problems, etc. and are open for medical treatments six days a week (Sundays excluded). An integral part of any treatment is one of nine diet regimes, although these are recommended and not enforced.
The whole complex is located right in the middle of the city and is spaced out in a large expanse of sandy woodland with the river Khorol (Ukrainian: Хорол) providing several areas suitable for bathing. It has a musical fountain, (opened in 2010), and, at night, a large illuminated windmill, (opened in 2011), standing close to the main administrative building. Other features include pedaloes, boats, several restaurants and cafés, dancing, live music, rides through the woods in a horse-drawn carriage, a theatre, organised excursions and a large 'water feature' with geese, ducks (including a couple of Mandarins), a large family of terrapins and some beautiful black swans. Elsewhere in the complex is an enclosure with peacocks and hens, including some rather exotic white ones.
There is another sanatorium, 'The Rainbow', (Ukrainian: Санаторій «Радужний»), within the same grounds as Myrhorod Kurort but with different owners. This is, in the main, frequented by wealthy Ukrainians and Russians who prefer what they regard as the 'added security' of a sanatorium that advertises itself as 'élite'. The other two resorts are much further out of town, not so well maintained and equipped and are both rather 'tired' in appearance, both from the inside and out. One of them, the 'Hohol', (Russian/Ukrainian: Гогол) is owned by a Trades Union and seems to derive most of its clientele from its members.
Generally, English is not widely spoken in any of the spas, only Ukrainian and Russian, although Mirgorod Kurort has occasional visitors from the UK, Germany, France, Dubai, the U.S. and Canada in particular and despite very few foreign visitors speaking more than a couple of words of the local languages, they do seem to be able to get by with some pointing, prodding and smiling.
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The famous Georgian writer Davit Guramishvili had an estate in Myrhorod and consequently spent a lot of time living and working there. The poet also spent his last years in Myrhorod and is buried there. The town's Central Park has a sculpture depicting Guramishvili in his older years.
Since 1991, Myrhorod administration signed international agreements of mutual cooperation in the spheres of economics, commerce, and culture with four foreign partner towns including Gorna Oryahovitsa, Bulgaria (1991) and Randolph, Vermont, USA (1999).
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