Letters from Archimandrite Makarii, Founder of the Altay Mission. With Biographical Descriptions, Portraits, Views, and Two Copies


In the early 19th century, the Russian Orthodox Church turned its attention to the more remote regions of Siberia, particularly the Altay, or Altai. One of the notable missionaries to the region was Makarii (born Mikhail Yakovlevich Glukharev, 1792‒1847). Makarii was a noted linguist and scholar who taught at several seminaries in European Russia before asking to be sent as a missionary to Siberia. He was part of a group that established the Altai Spiritual Mission at Biysk. Makarii believed that the missionaries would have more success if they had a new Russian translation of the Bible. He therefore asked the Holy Synod in Saint Petersburg for permission to translate the Bible from Hebrew and Greek into Russian, but his request was turned down. He nevertheless produced a translation of the Old Testament, which was published after his death. This extensive collection of Makarii’s letters was edited by Konstiantyn Vasyl’ovich Kharlampovych (1870‒1932), a noted church historian. It begins with a lengthy biography of Makarii written by Kharlampovych. During the Bolshevik era, Kharlampovych was arrested for his continued support of the Russian Orthodox Church and his attempts to preserve its historical documents and artifacts. This book is preserved in the collections of the National Library of Russia in Saint Petersburg. It was digitized for the Meeting of Frontiers digital library project in the early 2000s.

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Title in Original Language

Письма архимандрита Макария Глухарева, основателя Алтайской миссии. С биографическим очерком, портретами, видом и двумя факсимиле

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558 pages : illustrations, portraits ; 24 x 16 centimeters


  1. “Glukharev, Makarii (Mikhail Yakovlevich,” in Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions, edited by Gerald H. Anderson (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 1999).
  2. Stephen K. Batalden, Russian Bible Wars: Modern Scriptural Translation and Cultural Authority (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2013).

Last updated: January 10, 2018