Rank estates

Rank estates (rangovi maietnosti). Landed estates in the Hetman state awarded to Cossack starshyna by the hetman for the duration of their commission in return for their service and costs incurred by them in the course of service. They were introduced by Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky after 1654 and were distributed out of the land fund created by the confiscation of holdings of Polish landowners and the Catholic church. Military or free lands were also used. Larger rank estates (volosti) were granted to hetmans by the tsar. All rank estates were administered by the General Military Chancellery, but their size was not standardized according to rank until 1732. At that time it was established that the general quartermaster was to receive an estate with 400 peasant households; the general justice and general treasurer, one with 300 households; and so on. Russian officials in Ukraine were also given estates (eg, Petr Rumiantsev, president of the Little Russian Collegium). In the 18th century the number of rank estates awarded increased rapidly. Holders attempted to transform them into hereditary property, but only a few senior officials who were granted estates by the tsar succeeded. In 1764, 48 persons held 116 rank estates, with a total of 2,791 peasant households in the nine regiments of the Hetman state. After the abolition of the Hetman state in the 1780s, most of the estates became the private property of their holders and their descendants, who received Russian noble status.

Miakotin, V. Ocherki sotsial’noi istorii Ukrainy v XVII–XVIII vv., vol 1, fasc 2 (Prague 1926)
Diadychenko, V.A. Narysy suspil’no-politychnoho ustroiu Livoberezhnoï Ukraïny kintsia XVII–pochatku XVIII st. (Kyiv 1959)

Arkadii Zhukovsky

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

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