Kem is the administrative centre of Kemsky district, located about 16 hours north of Moscow. It has an estimated population of about 11, 182 as of 2018, reflecting a steady decline in population since 1989. I don't blame them it looks fucking cold up there, and I for one am convinced that cold makes people crazy.
Anyway, history stuff!!!! So this place isn't so historical compared to some other Russian cities. This town was first mentioned in 1450, when it was donated by Marfa Boretskaya (the leader of the Novogrodian resistance against Moscovite domination) to the Solovetsky Monastery. Now this doesn't sound so interesting at first but if Ken Follet (author of the Pillar of the Earth series, an absolute fav!!!!) has taught me anything, it's that monestries are involved in some seedy ass political dealings.
In fact, Marfa was involved elections for the local archbishop. When a Moscovite archbishop was chosen and ordained in the Capital of Moscovite Ivan III instead of Kiev. So Marfa said 'um excuse me that's rude as fuck' and started associating herself with the Lithuanian party in Novgorod. She also sent money to a foreign monarch asking that monarch to accept Novgorod as her autonomous land in her possession. Then Ivan III got pissed and declared war which didn't turn out well for Marfa, though she was indefatigable in her resistance against the Moscovites.
Yeah so I think this lady is cool as f. She was donating land, leading resistances, sending money to monarchs, basically declared herself queen of Novogorod.
What a cool fucking lady.
Sources; Wikipedia, https://petelawrieblog.com/obrazovanie/82270-boyarynya-marfa-boreckaya-interesnye-fakty.html
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