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Old Believers Museum

Along the western shore of the largest trans boundary lake in Europe is a cluster of villages frozen in time. The Russian Old Believers who live in these villages, on what is known as the “Onion Route,” have held onto their religious beliefs and traditions for close to a thousand years.

Fleeing religious persecution in their homeland for refusing to embrace liturgical reforms in the mid-17th century, they found refuge on the forested west bank of Lake Peipsi. There they have lived in virtual isolation, the church services in their prayer houses still being conducted in Old Church Slavonic, an archaic language which few understand.

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