Tarasevych, Leontii [Тарасевич, Леонтій; Tarasevyč, Leontij], b ca 1650, probably in Transcarpathia, d 1710 in Kyiv. Master engraver. He and his brother, Oleksander Tarasevych, learned engraving in Augsburg at the workshop of B. and P. Kilian. In 1680–8 he worked in Vilnius, where he engraved illustrations for the Basilian, Franciscan, and Jesuit presses there. From 1688 he worked in Ukraine, first in Chernihiv (see Chernihiv Press) and then in Kyiv at the Kyivan Cave Monastery Press under the patronage of Metropolitan Varlaam Yasynsky. Tarasevych engraved portraits of prominent Ukrainians, Poles, and Russians, including Hetman Ivan Mazepa; portrayals of the Catholic and Orthodox saints; heraldic and corporation crests; theses of scholarly disputes at the Vilnius Academy and Kyivan Mohyla Academy, decorated with many symbols, allegories, and saints; and book illustrations, notably 45 engravings for the Kyivan Cave Patericon printed by the Kyivan Cave Monastery Press in 1702. Tarasevych helped establish the art of copper engraving in Ukraine and created some of the best works in Ukrainian baroque graphic art. A book about him by Dmytro Stepovyk was published in Kyiv in 1986.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 5 (1993).]

Encyclopedia of Ukraine