Barysaw or Borisov is a city in Belarus, the administrative center of the Borisov district of the Minsk region. The territory of the city is 46 km². The population of the city is 140,700 people (as of January 1, 2020). It stands on the Berezina River, 77 km from Minsk.


First mentioned in the annals
In the Lithuanian chronicles the city of Barysaw is mentioned under the year 1102. "In 1102, Prince Boris Vseslavich went to the Yatvyag and, having defeated them, returning, set the city in his name ...". The city arose at the confluence of the Skhi and Berezina rivers and was named after the Polotsk prince Boris (Rogvold) Vseslavich.

The first mention of the city in the Laurentian Chronicle refers to 1127, and in the Ipatiev Chronicle to 1128, as a fortress of the Polotsk principality. The first settlement burned down as a result of a strong fire, as evidenced by archaeological excavations. A new city arose to the south, where its tributary Skha flows into the Berezina. A wooden fortress was built on this site in the 12th century.

The emergence of a new city
The new city arose 4 km downstream of the river, southeast of its original location. On the left bank of the Berezina, at the confluence of the Prilja River with it, on an island 200 × 300 m in size, a wooden castle was built in the 12th century, which existed until the 18th century. Borisov Castle was a wooden-earth fortification, surrounded by a deep moat with water of about 2 hectares. Over time, the buildings expanded. In the middle of the 19th century, a new prison castle was built on the site of the decayed buildings of the castle. At the moment, there is a building belonging to the objects of historical and cultural value of Belarus, as evidenced by the installed memorial sign.

As part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania
Due to its geographical location, by the middle of the 13th century Barysaw was one of the famous trade and craft centers. At the end of the XIII century Barysaw became part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. It is listed in the chronicle "List of Russian cities far and near" (end of the XIV century). In 1563 Borisov received from the Grand Duke Sigismund the Magdeburg Law, which freed the inhabitants of the city from feudal duties and gave them the right to self-government.

As part of the Commonwealth
Since 1569, after the signing of the Union of Lublin, Barysaw until the 18th century was within the boundaries of the Polish-Lithuanian state - the Commonwealth. In 1662, the Austrian diplomat and traveler Meyerberg Augustin passed through the city, who left a description of the architecture, life of the inhabitants and the vicinity of Barysaw.

Numerous wars repeatedly ravaged and devastated Barysaw. At the beginning of the 15th century, the internecine struggle between the princes Yagailo, Zhigimont and Svidrigailo almost completely destroyed the city.

In June 1655 near Barysaw, Prince Baryatinsky Yuri Nikitich, at the head of the two thousandth forward regiment, defeated a detachment of Lithuanian troops.

During the war between Russia and the Commonwealth of 1654-1667. several times it was occupied by either Russian troops or the troops of the Commonwealth. He suffered serious damage during the Northern War of 1700-1721.

In 1792, King Stanislav Poniatowski of Poland granted the city coat of arms.