Apostol, Danylo

Image - Hetman Danylo Apostol (18th-century portrait). Image - Hetman Danylo Apostol.

Apostol, Danylo [Апостол, Данило], b 14 December 1654, d 28 January 1734 in Sorochyntsi, Myrhorod regiment. (Portrait: Danylo Apostol.) Colonel of the Myrhorod regiment in 1683-1727 and then hetman of Left-Bank Ukraine in 1727–34. At first Apostol opposed Ivan Mazepa, then supported him. In November 1708, however, he abandoned Mazepa and the Swedes and joined Peter I. He took part in Russia's Prut (1711) and Persian (1722) campaigns. The martial law established in Ukraine by Peter I after his victory at the Battle of Poltava, the rule of the Little Russian Collegium, and other restrictions on Ukrainian autonomy persuaded Apostol to side with the Ukrainian officers under the leadership of Acting hetman Pavlo Polubotok. Apostol was the initiator of the so-called Kolomak Petitions in 1723, which led to the imprisonment of Polubotok and a delegation of officers in Saint Petersburg and the deportation of Apostol and his associates. The influential Prince Aleksandr Menshikov, however, supported Apostol for his own economic reasons and helped to secure his election as hetman on 1 October 1727. The Authoritative Ordinances (Reshitelnye Punkty) imposed on Ukraine by the Russian government in 1728 limited the powers of the hetman considerably. Apostol's rule was characterized by a unique compromise between the old political arrangements and the new, which were more restrictive of Ukraine's autonomy. In the first few years as hetman Apostol accomplished a great deal. He improved the Cossack administration and reformed the judicial system (decree of 1730). To regularize social relations, he put an end to the transfer of Cossack officers' estates into improper hands. The General Survey of Landholdings was conducted in 1729–30 in all the regiments of the Hetman state. Apostol was a diligent landowner, merchant-exporter, and manufacturer. He defended the interests of Ukrainian merchants and tried to modify the commercial system that was imposed on Ukraine by Peter I, a system that favored the Russian merchants and the Russian state. Apostol opposed the Russian elements in the Hetman state administration, where a number of Cossack regiments (Starodub regiment, Chernihiv regiment, Nizhyn regiment, Pereiaslav regiment, Hadiach regiment) were governed by Russians or other foreigners appointed by the tsar.

‘Dnevnik Petra Danilovicha Apostola,’ Kievskaia starina, 1895, nos 6–8
Krupnyts'kyi, B. Het'man Danylo Apostol i ioho doba (Augsburg 1948)

Borys Krupnytsky, Oleksander Ohloblyn

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

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