- Żółkiew redirects here. For another place used to be named Żółkiew, see Żółkiewka, Lublin Voivodeship
Zhovkva main market square
|• Total||7.64 km2 (2.95 sq mi)|
|• Density||1,742/km2 (4,510/sq mi)|
|Area code(s)||+380 3252|
Zhovkva (Ukrainian: Жовква, Ukrainian pronunciation: [ˈʐɔv̥kva]; Russian: Жо́лква, 1951-1992: Нестеров; Polish: Żółkiew; Yiddish: Zholkva) is a city in the Lviv Oblast (province) of western Ukraine, north of Lviv. It is the administrative center of the Zhovkivskyi Raion (district). The current estimated population is 13,500.
The site of Zhovkva has been inhabited since the 14th century. Zhovkva was founded in 1594 as a private fortified town by the Polish nobleman Stanisław Żółkiewski, and, like Zamość, was built on an ideal Renessaince city plan. Due to its strategic location at the intersection of important trade routes, the town prospered.
In the 17th century, it became the royal residence for King John III Sobieski of Poland, and a hub of religious life, arts and commerce. From its earliest days, the population was a mix of Poles, Ukrainians and Jews. Landmark buildings include a fortress-like synagogue, churches and monasteries.
From the first partition of Poland in 1772 until 1918, the town (named Żółkiew) was part of the Austrian monarchy (Austria side after the compromise of 1867), head of the district with the same name, one of the 78 Bezirkshauptmannschaften in Austrian Galicia province (Crown land) in 1900.
Before World War II, the town's 4,500 Jews accounted for nearly half the population, but few survived the Holocaust. The synagogue was blown up by the Nazis in 1941, leaving only the outside walls. In 2000, the building was declared one of the world's most endangered sites by the World Monuments Fund. A restoration campaign began in 2001, supported by WMF's Jewish Heritage Program and other sources, which is ongoing.
In 1939, following the Soviet invasion of Poland, Zhovkva, together with the rest of Poland's Kresy Wschodnie, was annexed by the Soviet Union further to the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact and became a part of Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1944. In 1951 the town was renamed Nesterov after the World War I aviator Pyotr Nesterov who became the first to perform aerial ramming in the history of aviation near Zhovkva. The aerial ramming was fatal to both parties. The name Zhovkva was restored in 1992.
The Collegiate Church of St. Lawrence, a domed church from the 17th century built by the Italian architect and mason Paweł Szczęśliwy ("Paolo the Lucky"), was turned into a warehouse under Soviet rule. After Ukraine declared independence in the early 1990s, the church was restored.
The town center of Zhovkva was declared a heritage site in 1994, and restoration work is now under way. Zhovkva Castle, the town's oldest and largest building, is being converted into a culture and conference hall.
- Relics of Saint Parthenius, 3rd-century Christian martyr from Rome, whose relics were moved to Zhovkva in 1784. They are kept at the local Church of Holy Heart of Jesus, run by Ukrainian Greek-Catholic monks of the Basilian order.
- Ivan Rutkovych, Ukrainian iconographer
- Zbigniew Burzyński
- Clara Kramer, Holocaust survivor
- Salcia Landmann, researcher of Yiddish culture
- Jakub Ludwik Sobieski, Jakub Sobieski
- Włodzimierz Puchalski
- Stanisław Żółkiewski
- Włodzimierz Stożek
- Hillel ben Naphtali Zevi
- Nachman Krochmal, Jewish philosopher
- Jacob ben Wolf Kranz, maggid
- Zalman Schachter-Shalomi
- Hersch Lauterpacht
Media related to Zhovkva at Wikimedia Commons
- (Polish) Żółkiew (Zhovkva) in the Geographical Dictionary of the Kingdom of Poland (1895)
- castles.com.ua - Zhovkva
- ua.vlasenko.net - Pictures of Zhovkva