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Terebovlia (Ukrainian: Теребовля, Polish: Trembowla) is a small city in the Ternopil Oblast (province) of western Ukraine, and the administrative center of the Terebovlya Raion (district). It is an ancient settlement that traces its roots to the settlement of Terebovl which existed in Kievan Rus. The name may also be variously transliterated as Terebovlya, Terebovla, or Terebovlja.[1]



Skyline of Terebovlia
Skyline of Terebovlia
Flag of Terebovlia
Coat of arms of Terebovlia
Coat of arms
Terebovlia is located in Ternopil Oblast
Terebovlia is located in Ukraine
Coordinates: 49°18′00″N 25°41′25″E / 49.30000°N 25.69028°E / 49.30000; 25.69028Coordinates: 49°18′00″N 25°41′25″E / 49.30000°N 25.69028°E / 49.30000; 25.69028
Country Ukraine
Province Ternopil Oblast
DistrictTerebovlia Raion
First mentioned1097
Magdeburg rights1389
 • Total14,996
Time zoneUTC+2 (EET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+3 (EEST)
Prince Vasylko monument in Terebovlia
Ruins of Pidhora Monastery
Landscape around Terebovlia
Terebovlia city hall

The population as of the 2001 census was 13,661; in 2012 there were 13,796 residents.[2] In 1913 the city counted 10,000 residents, of whom 4,000 were Poles, 3,200 were Rusyns (Ruthenians) and 2,800 were Jews. In 1929 there were 7,015 people, mostly Polish, Ukrainian and Jewish. Until September 17, 1939, the day of the Soviet invasion of Poland, Trembowla was a county seat within the Tarnopol Voivodeship of the Second Polish Republic. Prior to the Holocaust, the city was home to 1,486 Jews, and most of them (around 1,100) were shot by Germans in the nearby village of Plebanivka on April 7, 1943.


Terebovlia is one of the oldest cities in what is now Western Ukraine. It was first mentioned in the chronicles of 1097 (Primary Chronicle). During the Red Ruthenia times it used to be the center of Terebovlia principality. It was called Terebovl (Polish: Trembowla). Terebovlia principality included lands of the whole southeast of Galicia, Podolia and Bukovyna.[3] Polish King Casimir III the Great became the suzerain of Halych after the death of his cousin, Boleslaw-Yuri II of Galicia, when the city became part of the Polish domain. It was fully incorporated into Poland in 1430 during the reign of king Władysław II Jagiełło, while his son Casimir IV Jagiellon granted the town limited Magdeburg Rights.

After the rebuilding of the castle in Terebovlia in 1366,[4] Poland (Podole Voivodeship) administered the town. It was part of the system of border fortifications of the Polish Kingdom and later the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth against Moldavian and Wallachian incursions. The town also later resisted frequent invasion by the Crimean Tatars, the Ottomans and the Zaporozhian Cossacks from the south and southeast. Because of the threat of invasion, the Terebovlya castle, monastery and churches were all designed as defensive structures. The town was the seat of the famous starost and the most successful 16th-century anti-Tatar Polish commander Bernard Pretwicz, who died there in 1563. In 1594, the Ukrainian cossack rebel Severyn Nalyvaiko sacked the town.

Khmelnytsky UprisingEdit

During the Khmelnytsky Uprising, Terebovl became one of the centers of the struggle in Podolia. The city was frequently raided by Crimean Tatars, Turks and their erstwhile allies, the Zaporozhian Cossacks. The most destructive attacks happened in 1498, 1508, 1515 and 1516, resulting in a temporary decline of the town.[4] In 1674, as preparations were undertaken for another war with the Turks who were then at war with Muscovy, the Diet decided to further strengthen Terebovlia and send garrisons there. The following year, the Janissary once again embarked on raids against towns and villages, and on 20 September 1675 destroyed the town,[5] but the castle was held by a small group of defenders (80 soldiers and 200 townsmen) until King Jan III Sobieski arrived to relieve them. This episode is known as the Battle of Trembowla. The castle was destroyed during the final Turkish invasion of 1688.

Modern historyEdit

After the first partition of Poland in 1772, Trembowla became part of the Habsburg Empire's Galicia until 1918. From November 18, 1918, until June 9, 1919, the town was under control of the West Ukrainian People's Republic. Following the Polish–Ukrainian War, Trembowla reverted to Polish rule, and served as seat of a county in Tarnopol Voivodeship. In the interbellum period, the town was home to the 9th Regiment of Lesser Poland Uhlans.

The Soviet Union took the city along with interwar eastern Poland in September 1939. The Soviets remained in power until the German invasion in June 1941. Later, the Soviet Union retook the town, and it became part of the Soviet Ukraine between 1944–1991. Between April and July 1943, approximately 3000 Jews in the Trembowla ghetto were executed by Nazi Germans with the support of local police. After the liberation, only fifty or sixty people from the entire Jewish community had survived. [6]

During World War II, Trembowla and the surrounding areas also witnessed mass murders of ethnic Poles. After investigation of crimes done by Ukrainian nationalists and local Ukrainian peasantry, the Institute of National Remembrance of Poland confirmed the death at least 1002 persons in the territory of Tarnopol and Trembowla powiats (counties)[7] As a result, and following the population exchange between Poland and Soviet Ukraine, almost all Polish survivors left the town in 1945, moving to the Recovered Territories of Poland. In 1991 Terebovlia became part of an independent Ukraine.

Sites of interestEdit

The town has ruins of a castle which was built by King Kazimierz Wielki in the second half of the 14th century. In 1534, the castle was expanded by the Voivode of Kraków, Andrzej Teczynski, and in 1631 it was once again expanded by the Castellan of Trembowla, Andrzej Balaban. In 1648, it was captured by the Cossacks.

Other sites of interest are a Carmelite church and monastery complex, founded in 1617 by Piotr Ozga. It formerly housed the painting of Our Lady of Trembowla, which was moved to St. Catherine Church in Gdańsk after World War II. Communist authorities turned the complex into a factory, and later a house of culture. Currently, it is an Orthodox church. Three kilometers south of the town, there are ruins of a 17th-century defensive monastery of the Basilian monks. It was completed in 1716. Terebovl also has a Roman Catholic church of Saint Peter and Paul, designed in 1927 by architect Adolf Szyszko-Bohusz.


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ Чисельність наявного населення України на 1 січня 2013 року. Київ: Державний комітет статистики України, 2013, s. 96.
  3. ^ Terebovlya. "Welcome to Terebovlya". Personal.ceu.hu. Retrieved 31 August 2011.
  4. ^ a b Butschal. "Die alte Stadt von Terebovlia". Butschal.de. Archived from the original on 28 September 2011. Retrieved 31 August 2011.
  5. ^ Castles. "Castles and Churches of Ukraine". Castles.com.ua. Retrieved 31 August 2011.
  6. ^ https://www.aish.com/ho/p/Personal-Accounts-During-the-Holocaust.html#10
  7. ^ Zakończenie śledztwa w sprawie zbrodni ukraińskich nacjonalistów, dokonanych na osobach narodowości polskiej na terenie powiatów Tarnopol i Trembowla (woj. tarnopolskie) w latach 1939–1945 at the Institute of National Remembrance, 3 July 2017.

External linksEdit