The Konotop Campaign of 1672 to “Elect a Hetman”
Keywords:Ukrainian history of the second half of seventeenth century, Konotop Rada of 1672, Hetman D. Ignatowich Mnogogreshniy, Hetman I. Samoylovich
This article analyses the reasons for Hetman D. Ignatowich (Mnogogreshniy)’s dismissal and arrest on the night of 13 March 1672 and the election of I. Samoylowich as the new hetman. The author provides a detailed description of all the reports regarding Ignatowich’s communications with Hetman Doroshenko and his plans to launch a mutiny against the tsar and become subject of the Turkish sultan, which made Ignatowich start mobilising troops and transport his property to a safe place in advance. Additionally, the author describes the effort taken by the Russian government to keep the hetman under their rule and lack of plans to dismiss him. After the information about Ignatowich’s treason and arrest by representatives of the Cossack starshina (officership) reached Moscow, the latter supported the plotters and tried the former hetman in a court of law, sentencing him to exile in Siberia. Even though there were fears of Cossack uprisings to support Ignatowich, the appointment of a new hetman was bloodless and was not followed by any serious uprisings, which testifies to the lack of support towards him personally or the policy he carried out. On 17 June 1672, the 30‑yearold Samoylowich was elected hetman at the Konotop Rada. He did not enjoy any support of the starshina or Cossacks in general and was dependent on the support of the tsarist authorities and Cossack elites. The conditions of the Konotop articles signed at the Rada were identical to the Glukhov articles from 1669 and provided the hetmanate with broad autonomy and a very limited tsarist military and administrative participation. The only addition was that the authorities were requested to arbitrate any possible disputes between the hetman and the Cossack starshina. In order to demonstrate the military support for the tsar’s candidate, the authorities sent Prince Romodanovsky’s army to the place where the Rada was to be held and deployed additional troops along the hetmanate’s borders.
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