After the Tatar Pass, the road goes down in the Prut valley, the first settlement is Tatariv, that is, Tatars’ Town. After the fall of Kiev (1240) here ran the border of the Mongol Empire, the Tatar troops repeatedly invaded the Carpathians, until the Hungarian Angevin rulers sent Romanian tribes from Maramureș to found a buffer state against them, the future Moldova. The memory of the Tatar border guards is preserved by a chain of place names along the other side of the Carpathians, and according to some historians, the local mountaineers, the Hutsuls with their small and heavy-duty, Tatar-like horses are also their descendants.
After Tatariv, the Prut valley widens for a few hundred meters, and on the right side there appears a canopy structure, like those set by the Greek Catholics above the roadside statues of the Virgin Mary. I passed before it a couple of times before I first looked at it carefully.
However, under the canopy there is no statue of Mary, but a cross, which, according its three-language inscription – German, Hungarian, Ukrainian – was set in 2005 by the Austrian Black Cross organizing the care of war graves, and the Hungarian Institute and Museum for Military History, in memory of the Austro-Hungarian soldiers fallen here in the First World War. Around it, on each side two rows of stone crosses, perhaps more symbolic than real, a total of forty-eight.
I wonder when our compatriots fell here. During the Russian offensive of late 1914, which advanced as far as to Yasinia/Körösmező, in then Hungary? At the time of the spring campaign of 1915 which conquered Galicia back? In several consequent battles in defense of the Tatar Pass? If you know more, write about it to us.