Image - The Renaissance palace (1635-40) in Pidhirtsi, Lviv oblast. Image - The Grand Palace in Livadiia in the Crimea. Image - The facade of the Galagan palace in Sokyryntsi. Image - The facade of the Galagan palace in Sokyryntsi. Image - Restored Hetman Kyrylo Rozumovskys palace in Baturyn (1799-1803) (photo V. Mezentsev, 2008).

Palace. An elaborate residence built by a monarch or noble. Palaces of the Kyivan Rus’ period have not survived. Remains of one built near the Church of the Tithes in Kyiv were excavated in the 1930s (drawing: a reconstruction of the Great [Western] palace in Kyiv.). During the 13th to 16th centuries many castles but few palaces were built. It was only in the 17th century that members of the Cossack starshyna, particularly hetmans, began commissioning them. Most of the palaces built during the Hetmanate era have not survived. All that remains of Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky's palaces in Chyhyryn and Subotiv are written descriptions and drawings of the ruins. Only one drawing of Hetman Petro Doroshenko's Chyhyryn palace has survived. All traces of Hetman Ivan Mazepa's imposing baroque palace in Baturyn were destroyed on the orders of Peter I in 1708, and Hetman Danylo Apostol's palace in Hlukhiv was destroyed by fire. The palaces built by Polish nobles in Right-Bank Ukraine fared much better, including the Renaissance-baroque one in Pidhirtsi (1654) and others in Zbarazh, Berezhany, and Bar.

Most of the surviving palaces in Ukraine date from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. They were constructed in the Classicist style then popular in the Russian Empire. The most elaborate was the Zavadovsky palace in Lialychi (1794), built by Giacomo Quarenghi with a Palladian rotunda, a cupola, and a complex semicircular structure of 100 rooms. Two of the finest palaces were Hetman Kyrylo Rozumovsky's in Pochep (1796) and Baturyn (1799). Designed by the Scottish architect C. Cameron, the Baturyn palace was built in the Palladian style with Louis XVI interior decoration and some Ukrainian ornamental detailing. It was partially destroyed in 1923 by the Bolshevik regime and is now being rebuilt. Other examples in the Classicist style include the Galagan palace in Sokyryntsi (1829), designed by P. Dubrovsky, and the Vorontsov palace and park (1826) near Odesa, designed by F. Boffo, an Odesa architect originally from Sardinia. Because most of the architects were foreigners, and all buildings had to be approved by the authorities in Saint Petersburg, Ukrainian traditions were not incorporated in their architecture.

Daria Zelska-Darewych

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 3 (1993).]

Image - The Galagan palace in the park in Sokyryntsi.

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