Kochubei, Motria

Kochubei, Motria [Кочубей, Мотря; Kočubej, Motrja], b ca 1688, d ? The daughter of General Judge Vasyl Kochubei. Her godfather, Hetman Ivan Mazepa, wanted to marry her in 1704 but failed to win her parents' consent. Nevertheless, Motria went to live with Mazepa. In 1707 she married Vasyl Chuikevych, the general judge of the Hetman state. After Mazepa's defeat at the Battle of Poltava in 1709, she and her husband were exiled to Siberia. Upon returning to Ukraine, she entered a monastery. Mazepa's interesting, poetic letters to her have been preserved, and their love affair is portrayed in Bohdan Lepky's trilogy Mazepa, Aleksandr Pushkin's poem Poltava, Petr Tchaikovsky's opera Mazepa, and Ilia Repin's painting Motrona Kochubei.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 2 (1988).]

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