Kabak


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Kabak

 

Public house in tsarist Russia in the 16th and the 17th centuries where alcoholic beverages were sold, either by the government or by tax farmers.

The first kabak appeared in Moscow in the 1550’s. Ivan IV Vasil’evich forbade the sale of vodka in Moscow but opened a kabak for the use of members of the oprichnina there. All proceeds from sales in these public houses went to the treasury. After 1555, kabaki began to appear in other cities, replacing anearlier form of public house known as the korchma. In the 17thcentury, about a thousand kabaki were in existence. In 1746 thename was changed to “drinking establishment” (piteinoe zavedenie), but the earlier term continued to be used, gradually acquiring a pejorative connotation. After 1863, with the establishmentof a state monopoly for sale of wine, kabaki began to be knownas state wine shops (kazennye vinnye lavki).

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