in the Russian state from the 15th through 17th centuries, the capture and return of runaway peasants by bodies of the feudal state and by the votchina (patrimonial estate) administration. The earliest references to svoz date to the second half of the 15th century, in connection with limitations on vykhod krest’ianskii (the peasant’s right to leave his lord). In the 16th and 17th centuries, as the enserfment of the peasantry proceeded apace and as the state apparatus was strengthened, svoz grew more common. The introduction of forbidden years (zapovednye leta) and, in 1592 and 1593, the prohibition against peasants leaving their masters were enforced in practice by organizing the svoz. After the Ulozhenie of 1649 was enacted, special svoz commissions were active in various parts of Russia; the function of the commissions, called investigative commissions, was to track down runaway peasants. Svoz was registered in svoznye knigi (svoz books) and otdatochnye knigi (books that registered the return of runaway peasants).
REFERENCESGrekov, B. D. Krest’iane na Rusi c drevneishikh vremen do XVIII v., 2nd ed., book 2. Moscow, 1954.
Koretskii, V. I. Zakreposhchenie krest’ian i klassovaia bor’ba v Rossii vo vtoroipolovine XVI v. Moscow, 1970.