Nizhyn regiment

Nizhyn regiment (Nizhenskyi polk). An administrative territory and military formation of the Hetman state (see Regimental system). Formed in 1648, Nizhyn regiment was one of the largest and most important of the Cossack regiments. In 1653–4 the regiment's male population numbered over 20,000, almost 12,000 of whom were Cossacks. It consisted of about 40 companies. The regiment was reorganized in 1663: eight northern companies were separated into Starodub regiment, some companies were transferred to Kyiv regiment and Chernihiv regiment, and the eastern part was formed into Hlukhiv regiment. For the next 60 years Nizhyn regiment consisted of 20 companies. From 1668 to 1782 the capital of the Hetman state, Baturyn and, later, Hlukhiv, was situated on the regiment's territory. Six of its companies formed the hetman guard and did not come under the regiment's command. In the early 1720s the male population of Nizhyn regiment was approx 16,300, including 10,000 Cossacks. By 1764 the male population had increased to 141,800, including 21,700 elect Cossacks and 42,800 Cossack helpers. Many of its officers came from powerful Cossack families, and some of its colonels, such as Ivan Zolotarenko (1652–5), Hryhorii Hulianytsky (1656–9), and Ivan Obydovsky (1695–1701), attained high office in the Hetman state. The regiment was abolished by the Russian authorities in 1782, and its territory was absorbed into Chernihiv vicegerency.

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

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