Many believe that the Zaporizhzhya Sich isthe only fortification that was in the area of the island of Khortytsya, but this is a completely erroneous opinion. In fact, under this name, history united a number of centers of the Dnieper Cossacks, which succeeded one another in succession. And they were in various places in the lower reaches of the Dnieper, south of the Dnieper rapids (hence the name "Zaporizhzhya").
The first Zaporizhzhya Sich is Khortitskaya fortress(Khortitskaya Sich), founded in 1552 by Prince Dmitry Vishnevetsky on the island of Malaya Khortitsa. It was destroyed by the Crimean-Turkish troops already in 1557, but its idea - a well-fortified military camp - was soon revived in the form of the following secessionist associations.
In total, the history of the Zaporozhye Sichthere are eight Sichs, each of which existed from 5 to 40 years: Khortitskaya, Tomakovskaya, Bazavlutskaya, Nikitinskaya, Chertomlyckaya, Kamenskaya, Alyoshkovskaya and Podpolnenskaya.
What customs and regulations were there?It is known, for example, that for the reception in the Sich the man should be free, unmarried, speak in Ukrainian, profess Orthodoxy (or be baptized into the Orthodox faith). After admission to the Cossacks, he had to undergo military training, which lasted about seven years.
The only authority on the Sich wasI am glad that all the most important issues were solved. Rada took place on October 1, then January 1 and on the second or third day of Easter. Also, the Rada could be convened at any time at the request of most Cossacks. The decisions taken at the Parliament were mandatory for everyone.
The community of all the Cossacks of the Zaporozhye Sich was calledKosh. It was divided into 38 kurens, which were independent military units. In each kuren there were from a few dozen to several hundred Cossacks. In addition, the word "kuren" had a different meaning - the so-called residential building, in which the "military kuren" was located.
Despite the fact that all decisions were taken at theRadakh, Zaporizhzhya Sich had a chapter, which was the ataman ataman. In addition to his basic powers, he had the right to sign death sentences for the guilty Cossacks. Particularly serious crimes were the following: the killing of another Cossack by the Cossack; any, even petty, theft; drunkenness in a state of intoxication; desertion; robbery of the local population.
About Zaporozhye Cossacks, their perseverance, courage,non-standard methods of struggle were many legends. And the fact remains that they could successfully resist strong, numerous and well-armed opponents.
In 1775, the Russian Empress Catherine IIsigned a manifesto according to which the Zaporizhzhya Sich was not only destroyed, but was also officially included in the Novorossiysk Province, which put an end to the independent Zaporozhye Cossacks. The reasons for this fateful decision were several events.
First, Russia concluded with the Crimean Khanatethe treaty by which it obtained access to the Black Sea, so the need to protect the southern borders has disappeared. And secondly, the Cossacks actively participated in the Pugachev uprising, so Catherine II feared that the uprising would spread to the Zaporozhye steppes.
June 5, 1775, the infamousliquidation of the Zaporozhye Sich. The Russian troops, led by Lieutenant-General Pyotr Tekel, approached Zaporozhye at night. They picked up the day when the Cossacks celebrated green Christmas trees and were not ready for battle. Following the Tekeli ultimatum, the Zaporizhzhya Sich was surrendered without a fight. The treasury and the archive were confiscated. After that the Zaporizhzhya Sich was completely destroyed by artillery.
After the liquidation of his Sich, the Cossacks joinedthe ranks of the troops of the Russian army, and the former sergeant-major became noblemen. Peter Kalnyshevsky, the last ataman of Zaporozhye Sich, was exiled to the Solovetsky Monastery, where he spent 28 years until his death. Part of the Cossacks went to the territory of Turkey, where they founded the Transdanubian Sich, which could last until 1828. The Trans-Danube Cossacks fought on the side of Turkey, and also participated in the suppression of uprisings.