Ivan Mazepa was born in the Ukrainian gentry Orthodox family in the Kiev region. He studied at the Kiev-Mohyla College, then - at the Jesuit College in Warsaw. Later, at the behest of his father, he was received at the court of the Polish king Jan Casimir, where he was one of the “noble” nobles. The proximity to the king allowed Mazepa to get a good education: he studied in Holland, Italy, Germany and France, fluent in Russian, Polish, Tatar, Latin. He also knew Italian, German and French. I read a lot, had an excellent library in many languages. In the 1665 year, after the death of his father, he took the post of the Chernigov substitute. At the end of 1669, his father-in-law, the convict general Semyon Polovtsov, helped him to advance in the circle of the right-bank hetman Doroshenko: Mazepa became the captain of the hetman court guard, then a clerk. In June 1674, Doroshenko sent Mazepa an envoy to the Crimean Khanate and Turkey. The delegation carried the left-bank Cossacks to the 15 Sultan as slaves-hostages. On the way to Constantinople, the delegation was intercepted by the ataman Ivan Sirko. Zaporozhian Cossacks, who seized Mazepa, transported it to left bank hetman Samoilovich. The getman entrusted the educated Mazepa with the education of his children, conferred on him the rank of troop comrade, and after a few years granted him the rank of captain. On the instructions of Samoylovich, Mazepa every year went to Moscow with the Dnieper “winter” village (embassy). During the reign of Sophia, power was actually in the hands of her favorite Prince Golitsyn.
The well-educated and well-read Mazepa gained his favor. When, after an unsuccessful Crimean campaign, it was necessary to shift the blame on someone, Golitsyn dumped it on Hetman Samoilovich (however, not without reason). He was deprived of the hetman, sent to Siberia with a crowd of relatives and supporters, his son Gregory was beheaded, and Mazepa was elected to the hetmans, mainly because Golitsyn, who loved him so much, wanted it.
When the young and energetic Peter I ascended the Russian throne in 1689, Mazepa again used his gift to charm those in power. Hetman constantly advised the young monarch in Polish affairs, and over time a close personal friendship arose between them. Young king Peter, carried away by the sea, sought to open access to the coast and by the beginning of his reign on the southern borders of the country favorable conditions had developed for this. The next European coalition, in which Russia was a member, was actively acting against the Turks, but 2 trips to the Crimea during the reign of Princess Sophia ended unsuccessfully. In 1695, Peter announced a new campaign on the Black Sea coast, with the goal of occupying Azov. The first time this was not possible, and the huge army retreated north in the fall. The next year, the campaign was better prepared, combat-ready was created. flotilla, and on July 19, Azov surrendered and was occupied by the Russians. Mazepa with the troops took part in both campaigns of Peter to Azov and gained even greater trust of the king. After the capture of Azov, Tsar Peter outlined broad state programs for consolidation in the south. To strengthen Moscow’s communication with the Azov coast, the tsar decided to connect the Volga with the Don and in 1697 35 thousand workers began digging a canal from the Kamyshinka river to the upper reaches of Ilovli, and another 37 thousand worked to strengthen the Azov, Taganrog and the Azov coast. The conquest of Azov by Moscow, the Azov nomad hordes, the construction of fortresses in the lower Don and on the Azov coast became decisive events in stories Don and Dnieper Cossacks. In foreign policy, Peter set a goal to intensify the activities of the anti-Turkish coalition. To this end, in 1697, he traveled with the embassy abroad. Saving the southern frontiers was entrusted to the Don and left-bank Dnieper Cossacks with the prohibition to “disturb bassurman at sea very quickly”. They adequately did this service, and in February, 1700, Mazepa became the holder of the Order of St. Andrew the First Called, founded by Peter. Peter personally placed the marks of the order on the hetman "for his many noble and diligently faithful faithful services in his military writings."
However, during his trip abroad, Peter became convinced of the impracticability of the idea of a "crusade" of Christian sovereigns against the Turks. The political situation in Europe has changed dramatically. It was the beginning of two big wars. Austria and France started a war among themselves for the right to put their contenders for the Spanish throne (war for the Spanish inheritance), and in the north the war of the union of European countries against Sweden began. Peter had either to wage war against Turkey alone or to end the struggle for mastering the coast of the Baltic Sea. The second choice was facilitated by the fact that Sweden turned against all its weak neighbors: Denmark, Poland and Brandenburg. Many lands of these countries were seized by Sweden under the previous kings Gustav Adolf and Karl X Gustav. King Charles XII was young and inexperienced, but he continued the warlike policies of his ancestors, and he also intensified repression against the oligarchy of the occupied Baltic lands. In response, the Master of the Livonian Order, von Patkul, became the instigator of the coalition against Charles. In 1699, Russia secretly joined this coalition, but only after the conclusion of peace with Turkey joined the hostilities. The beginning of the war was tragic. The fact is that the basis of the combat readiness and combat capability of the Russian army during the two preceding centuries was deliberate (permanent and professional) rifle troops. But they with great distrust (and this is putting it mildly) reacted to the reforms of Peter the Great and, in his absence, revolted, which was cruelly suppressed. As a result of the royal "search" and the terrible repression of the Strelets army was eliminated. The country was left virtually without a permanent regular army combat. The terrible defeat at Narva was a cruel retribution for these thoughtless reforms.
Figure.1 Streltskaya penalty. In the background is King Peter
Karl's path to Moscow was open, but Karl, after some deliberation, launched an offensive against Poland and was tightly occupied with this war from 1701 to 1707 the year. During this time, he defeated the Polish and Saxon army, made the North German principalities, also Saxony and Silesia dependent, completely mastered Poland and forced the Saxon Elector Augustus to abandon the Polish crown. Instead, he was elevated to the Polish throne by Stanislav Leschinsky. In fact, Karl became the supreme administrator of the Commonwealth and she lost her independence. But Peter spent this long-term respite adequately and effectively used to create a new regular army practically from scratch. Taking advantage of the fact that Russia is leading the war in a minor direction for the Swedes, Peter I began to conquer Ingermanlandia, and in 1703 he founded a new fortress city St. Petersburg at the mouth of the Neva. In the 1704 year, taking advantage of the uprising against the Commonwealth and the invasion of Swedish troops in Poland, Mazepa occupied the Right-Bank Ukraine. He repeatedly proposed to Peter I to combine both Ukraine into one Little Russia, which Peter refused because he respected the previously concluded agreement with Poland on the division of Ukraine into Right and Left Bank. In 1705, Mazepa made a trip to Volyn, to help Peter's ally, Augustus. The successes of the Russians in Courland in the same year prompted Charles XII to make a new decision, namely: after the defeat of August II, to return to action against Russia and to seize Moscow. In 1706, Peter met with Mazepa in Kiev, and Mazepa warmly set about building the Pechersk fortress laid by Peter. But 1706 year was a year of political failures of the Russian state. 2 February 1706, the Swedes defeated the Saxon army, and 13 in October 1706, Peter's ally, the Saxon elector and the Polish king Augustus, abandoned the Polish throne in favor of the Swedes' supporter Stanislav Leschinsky and severed the alliance with Russia. Moscow remained alone in the war with Sweden. It was then that Mazepa conceived a possible transition to the side of Charles XII and the formation of “independent ownership” from Little Russia under the rule of the puppet Polish king, which his correspondence with Princess Dolskoy unequivocally testifies to. The Dnieper Cossacks, first of all, their foreman, the Moscow authorities, but the transition to the service of the Polish king, following the example of previous times, was also closed.
Poland itself lost its independence and was under Swedish occupation. The opportunity for the Dnieper Cossacks to get rid of the dependence of Moscow lay in the war between Moscow and Sweden, but only on condition that the latter was victorious. A well-known phrase of Mazepa, uttered by him in the circle of the most approximate 17 of September of 1707: “Without extreme, last need, I will not change my loyalty to the royal majesty.” Then he explained that this could be for “extreme need”: “Until I see that royal majesty will not be able to protect not only Ukraine, but also his entire state from Swedish potency.” After the abdication of Augustus of the Polish crown, Karl XII stood in Saxony for almost a year, and in the summer of 1707, the Swedish army marched east. Small Russian troops were in Vilna and Warsaw to support the allied part of the Polish army, but it was not combat-ready and gave the cities to the Swedes without a fight. After passing through Poland, the Swedish army in January 1708 took Grodno, then Mogilyov, then lodged all spring in the region west of Minsk, receiving reinforcements and conducting combat training.
Along with the threat from the west, Russia was very restless on the Don. There, part of the Cossacks, connecting with the poor and fugitive under the leadership of Kondraty Bulavina instigated a revolt, which had its own reasons. Since 1705, the salt-making from the private business has been transferred to the state. On the Don, the center of the salt was the Bakhmut district, where the chieftain was Kondraty Bulavin. The craft was in the hands of homely Cossacks, but it was very laborious. The Cossacks in the salt flats "greeted every rabble" and a large number of runaway people gathered around the salt flats. Meanwhile, the royal decree of 1703, the Cossacks were forbidden under the penalty of the death penalty to take to themselves fugitive people. All arrivals to the Don later 1695 year corresponded, every tenth of them were sent to work in Azov, the rest of the former places of residence. In 1707, Prince Dolgorukov with a detachment was sent to the Don to withdraw fugitive people from there, but was attacked by Bulavin and his goals and was killed. Once at the head of the disgruntled element, Bulavin took the path of open insurrection against Moscow and called the whole Don to this. But the Cossacks did not support Bulavina, ataman Lukyanov assembled an army and defeated the rebels on Aydar. Bulavin with the remnants of supporters fled to Zaporizhia and the Rada allowed them to settle in Kodak. There, he began to collect around him dissatisfied and send "lovely letters." In March, 1708, he again went to Don in the Bakhmut district. The Cossacks exiled against Bulavin did not show resilience, among them began unrest. Bulavin took advantage of this and defeated them. The rebels pursued the Cossacks and 6 May 1708, took Cherkassk. Atamans and officers were executed, and Bulavin proclaimed himself Ataman of the Army. However, on June 5, 1708, during fights between the rebels, Bulavin was killed (according to other data he shot himself). Bulavin’s riot coincided with Karl’s speech against Russia, and therefore the massacre of the rebels was steep. But the search showed that of the 20 thousands of rebel natural Cossacks was an insignificant minority, the rebellious army consisted mainly of fugitives. By the end of 1709, all the instigators of the rebellion were executed, among them there were several Cossacks and chieftains. Ataman Nekrasov with 7 thousands of rebels fled to the Kuban, where he surrendered under the auspices of the Crimean Khan. His detachment was settled on Taman, where he joined up with the schismatics who had fled before.
Taking into account the complexity of the internal and external situation, Peter I tried in every way to make peace with Sweden. His main condition was to leave Ingermanland for Russia. However, Charles XII rejected the proposals of Peter, transmitted through intermediaries, wanting to punish the Russians.
Finally, in June 1708, Karl XII began a campaign against Russia, while he set the following goals:
- complete destruction of the state independence of the Russian state
- the statement by the vassal on the Russian throne of either the young noble nobleman Yakub Sobessky, or, if he deserves, Tsarevich Alexei
- secession from Moscow of Pskov, Novgorod and the whole north of Russia in favor of Sweden
- the accession of Ukraine, Smolensk and other Western Russian territories to the vassal and submissive to the Swedes Poland
- the division of the rest of Russia into specific princedoms.
Karl was to choose his way to Moscow, and the Little Russian hetman Mazepa, Tsar Peter and ... Belarusian peasants played a decisive role in this choice. Mazepa reassured Karl that the Cossacks and Tatars are ready to unite with him against Russia. By that time, Mazepa had communicated his plans to the grand vizier of the Ottoman Empire, and he ordered the Crimean Khan Kaplan-Girey to provide Mazepa with all kinds of assistance. General Levengaupt’s corps moved from Riga to the connection with Karl with a huge wagon train, but he was intercepted by Peter and Menshikov from the village of Lesnaya and was beaten up. Saving the remains of the hull, Levengaupt threw a wagon train from 6000 carts and trucks and it went to the winners. The Swedes fully felt the “encroachment” in provisions and forage, in which the Belarusian peasantry contributed a lot, hiding bread and horse feed, killing foragers. In response, the Swedes lyutovali in the occupied territory. Karl moved to Ukraine to connect with Mazepa. Russian troops retreated, avoiding decisive battles.
Mazepa's intentions were no longer secret to his environment. Colonels Iskra and Kochubey sent Peter a letter of treason to Mazepa, but the king trusted the hetman and gave him both colonels, who were executed by a cruel and painful death. But time did not wait, and Mazepa set about fulfilling his plan. He made a decisive bet on the victory of the Swedish king. This fatal mistake had dramatic consequences for the entire Dnieper Cossacks. He announced the elders the need for treason in Moscow. Mazepa left a strong and reliable army from Serdyuk to protect the treasury, supplies and provisions in the fortress of Baturin, and he himself made, allegedly, to the front against the expected Swedes. But en route, Mazepa announced that he had withdrawn the army not against the Swedes, but against the Tsar of Moscow. Disorder began in the army, most of the Cossacks fled, no more than 2000 remained near it. Having received evidence of Mazepa’s treason, Menshikov in November 1708 of the year took by storm and destroyed Baturin to the ground, and the entire Serdyuk garrison was destroyed. In Glukhov tsar and loyal elders was elected a new hetman, Colonel Skoropadsky. The Polish king Leshchinsky made a connection with Karl and Mazepa, but on the way he was intercepted and routed at Podkamnia. The Russian troops cut off all of Karl’s communications with Poland and Sweden, he did not even receive courier messages. Due to illness, poor nutrition and ammunition, the Swedish army needed rest. That is why the Swedes and turned to the south, to Ukraine, to rest there, from the south to continue the offensive on Moscow. However, in Ukraine, the peasants also met foreigners with hatred and, like the Belarusians, ran into the woods, hid bread, feed for horses, and killed foragers. In addition, in Ukraine, the Russian army stopped the scorched-earth tactics, and the Russian government explained the treacherous behavior of Mazepa to the Ukrainians. The letter of Mazepa intercepted to the Polish king Stanislav Leschinsky, sent from Romen 5 in December 1708, was distributed in the Polish and Russian lists. It was spread by the Russian command, knowing well that nothing could so hopelessly undermine the authority of the changed hetman as exposing his intention to give Ukraine to Poland. Turks and Crimeans to the aid of Mazepa and Karl also did not hurry to speak. But the ataman of the Zaporozhye army Konstantin Gordienko with the army went over to the side of Charles. Tsar Peter ordered the army and Don Cossacks to destroy Zaporozhye in order to "destroy the entire nest of the rebels to the ground." 11 May 1709 of the year after the resistance, Sich was taken and destroyed, and all defenders destroyed. Thus, all Dnieper turned out to be in the hands of Moscow. The main centers of separatism, which Mazepa and Karl had hoped for, were destroyed. Karl's troops were surrounded around Poltava. The Russian garrison was located in Poltava itself, and Karl began a siege. But Menshikov with the detachment made his way to the fortress and strengthened the ones besieged by people and the wagon train. Peter began a rapprochement and 20 June took up positions for the general battle in 4 miles from the Swedish camp. Moscow troops are well prepared their positions. King Charles went on reconnaissance, personally led the observation, but he was wounded in the leg by the Cossacks. Since the days of King Gustav Adolf, the Swedish army was one of the strongest in Europe, behind her shoulders were many brilliant victories, including in the Northern War. Peter attached great importance to this battle, did not want, and had no right to risk, and, despite the twofold superiority in forces, he chose defensive tactics. The Russian command successfully used military tricks.
Karl XII decided to attack the army of Peter before the Kalmyks fit and completely break his communications. Also, the Swedes were aware that Russian recruits have a distinctive shape. Peter ordered the seasoned and seasoned soldiers to change clothes by new recruits, which inspired the Swedes with an unreasonable illusion and they were trapped. On the night of June 27, Karl moved his troops against the Russian army, covered by a profitable redoubt system. On both sides showed the highest courage, an example served as both monarchs. The deadly battle continued, but not for long. The Swedes failed to take redoubts. Already in the course of the battle, the Swedish commander-in-chief, Field Marshal Renschild, saw ranks of recruits on the Russian flank and sent the main blow of his best infantry there. But the invincible Swedish fusilers instead of recruits ran into disguised Guards regiments and in the main direction of the attack fell into a firebag and suffered heavy losses. The Swedes everywhere were not able to withstand the heavy fire of the Russian units, they became frustrated and began to retreat, and after the contusions of King Charles they ran. The Russians went on to the persecution, overtook them at the Perevalochny and forced them to surrender. In the battle, the Swedes lost over 11 thousands of soldiers, 24 thousands of prisoners and the entire wagon train were taken. The losses of the Russians amounted to 1345 people killed and 3290 wounded. It should be said that from the many thousands of Ukrainian Cossacks (the registered Cossacks numbered 30 thousand, the Zaporozhye Cossacks - 10 − 12 thousand) about 10 thousand people went to the side of Charles XII: about 3 thousand registered Cossacks and about 7 thousand Zaporozhians. But even those soon died partly, while others began to scatter from the camp of the Swedish army. King Charles XII did not dare to use such unreliable allies, of which there were about 2 thousands left in battle, and therefore left them in a wagon train under the supervision of cavalry regiments. Only a small detachment of Cossack volunteers participated in the battle. Peter I also did not fully trust the Cossacks of the new hetman I. I. Skoropadsky, and did not use them in battle. To look after them, he sent 6 dragoon regiments under the command of Major General G. S. Volkonsky.
Fig.2 Karl XII and Hetman Mazepa after the Battle of Poltava
After the battle, King Karl, escorted by his convoy and Mazepa's Cossacks, fled to Turkey. There in Bender 22 September 1709, Mazepa died. After his death, the Cossacks, who had gone with him, were settled by the Sultan in the lower reaches of the Dnieper, where they were given several shipments for "feeding". Thus ended this adventure of Mazepa, which had great negative consequences for the Dnieper army and for the entire Cossacks. The vile example of Mazepa, who betrayed the empire after many years of service, for many decades gave a reason for a large tribe of envious and rogue protesters to strengthen the economic and military foundations of the Cossacks to see only dangerous symptoms of separatism.
Even after nearly a century, the most (not afraid of this word) prominent of the glorious galaxy of Cossack leaders, Don ataman Matvey Ivanovich Platov did not avoid such a parallel. Despite the immaculate long-term service of the empire, for the enviable success in strengthening the Don economy and the Army, he was slandered, repressed, imprisoned in the Peter and Paul Fortress, but managed to avoid death and was rehabilitated to the great chagrin of Russia's enemies. In the history of the Cossacks, the revolt of Bulavin and the betrayal of Mazepa were disastrous for the liberty of the Cossacks. Above them really threatened the complete elimination of their independence. Under Hetman Skoropadsky, a board of representatives from Moscow was appointed, which controlled all his activities. The existence of the free Cossacks ended, it finally turned into a service class. The Troop Circle was replaced by a meeting of stanitsa Atamans and two elected officials from each stanitsa, in which the Atamans of the Troops and a military sergeant were elected. Then the elected chieftain was approved (or not approved) by the king. As before, only village meetings remained. After the abandonment of Azov by the Prut Treaty, the garrison of the Moscow troops from Azov was withdrawn near Cherkassk, and its commander, in addition to defensive tasks, was ordered to look at “no shakiness from the Don Cossacks ...”. From 1716, the Don Army was transferred from the management of the Ambassadorial Order to the Senate. The Don Diocese lost its independence and was subordinated to the Metropolitan of Voronezh. In 1722, the hetman Skoropadsky died, his deputy Tsar Peter the Tsar dislike and repressed. Little Russian Cossacks were left without a hetman at all and were governed by a board. That such a "noble beating" of Cossack liberties was made by Tsar Peter. Later, during the “Indian rule”, the Dnieper Cossacks were partially reanimated. However, Petrovsky lesson did not go in store. In the second half of the 18th century, a fierce and uncompromising struggle of Russia unfolded for Lithuania and Black Sea coast. In this struggle, the Dnipro people showed themselves again unreliably, rebelled, many treacherously changed and ran to the enemy camp. The cup of patience overflowed and in 1775, by the decree of Empress Catherine II, the Zaporizhian Sich was destroyed, as expressed in the decree, “as a godless and unnatural community, not suitable for the extension of the human race”, and the upper Dnepr Cossacks turned into hussar regiments of the regular army, namely Ostrog, Izyumok, Akhtyrsky and Kharkov. But this is a completely different and rather tragic story for the Dnieper Cossacks.
Gordeev A.A. History of the Cossacks
Letopisnoe.povestvovanie.o.Malojj.Rossii.i.ejo.narode.i.kazakakh.voobshhe.1847. A. Rigelman