Berladnyk, Ivan Rostyslavych

Berladnyk, Ivan Rostyslavych, ?–1162. Having lost his appanage Zvenyhorod principality after the unification of the principality by Prince Volodymyrko Volodarovych, Prince Ivan tried unsuccessfully to seize the principality from Volodymyrko in 1144 and then fled to the Danubian town of Berlad (Bîrlad) (whence his name) in Moldavia. From 1145 he served at the courts of grand princes Vsevolod Olhovych and Sviatoslav Olhovych of Kyiv and at the courts of other Rus’ princes. In 1158 Ivan returned to the Danube region, where he organized a force of 6,000 Berladnyky (peasant rebels) and began attacking Galician towns. In 1159 he was defeated by the Galician prince Yaroslav Osmomysl near Ushytsia in Podilia and eventually fled to Greece. Historians disagree on the authenticity of the Berlad Charter, which was granted by Ivan to the merchants of Mesembria in 1134. According to some sources, Ivan was poisoned in Thessaloniki.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 1 (1984).]

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