Michael Prokurat, Alexander Golitzin, Michael D. Peterson


MATSIEVICH, ARSENII, Metropolitan of Rostov (1697–1772). Best known for being subjected to Russian imperial persecution in an “Enlightened Age,” his confinement began after he anathematized Catherine the Great for depriving the monasteries of their property rights (1763). He was then deprived of his metropolitanate, reduced to being a monk, and cloistered in a monastery, though he did not stop railing against Catherine there. After four years he was tried and convicted a second time, not as a cleric, but as a political prisoner under the name “Andrei Vral’ ”-which is not a name at all, but means “Andrew the Liar.” Following the second trial he was “shut up” in the prison in Reval (Tallin), that is to say, not only was he physically incarcerated, but his mouth was gagged. According to Canon Law-not to mention humane justice-both the trials and penalties were highly irregular.

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