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1. (Historical Terms) (in the former Soviet Union) a rural soviet
2. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) (in the former Soviet Union) a rural soviet
3. (Historical Terms) (in tsarist Russia) a peasant community consisting of several villages or hamlets
4. (Human Geography) (in tsarist Russia) a peasant community consisting of several villages or hamlets
[from Russian]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈvoʊ ləst)

1. (formerly) a small administrative peasant division in Russia.
2. a rural soviet.
[1885–90; < Russian vólost'; Old Russian volostĭ region, state, authority, c. Old Church Slavonic vlastĭ sovereignty, power, derivative of Slavic *vald- rule, c. Lithuanian valdýti, Gothic waldan to rule; compare wield]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
(6) It is true that recent studies of the Russian justice system do not emphasize political tension, but on the contrary talk about the harmony of state and society as evidenced in the successful functioning of the volost' courts or the normalization of dialogue between lawyers and the government after the First Russian Revolution of 1905-7.
By 1920, for example, an increasing number of Khortytsia Mennonites sought positions within a large number of Bolshevik institutions at the village and volost level.
On June, 7, 1917 the Tavriisk province commissar and Military volost executive committee sent another application to Petersburg.
In addition to local newspapers and memoirs, Badcock utilizes an array of archival sources from both provinces, especially the records of town dumas and local soviets and communications between local representative bodies and commissars at the provincial, uezd, and volost levels.
Gaudin argues that land captains played a potentially decisive role in village politics, yet they were constrained by their dependence on volost officials and their lack of local knowledge.
The figures given by Krasnaia pechat' indicate a clear preference for those closest to the peasants and in a position to most oppress them--leaders of the village soviets and of volost executive committees, and militiamen.
The evolution of municipal institutions in the West Reserve is particularly interesting, as Gerhard John Ens has also shown us in his Volost and Municipality: The Rural Municipality of Rhineland, 1884-1984 (Altona: Rural Municipality of Rhineland, 1984).
The kinds of cases peasant litigators took to the township (volost') courts established after the emancipation of 1861, were remarkably similar to those Stevens cites.