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Stefan Kunicki
Hetman of Right-bank Ukraine

In office
August 24, 1683 – 1684
Succeeded by Andriy Mohyla
Personal details
Born circa 1640
Died 1684
Mohyliv, Ukraine

Stefan Kunicki (Ukrainian language: Стефан Куницький ) of Sas Coat of Arms (died 1684) was a hetman of Right-bank Ukraine.

Biography[edit | edit source]

Kunicki's origin is unknown, also as his youth and beginning of military career.[1] Before 1673 Kunicki became a collaborator of hetman Petro Doroshenko. In 1673 he was sent twice to Warsaw to the Polish king Michał Korybut Wiśniowiecki as an envoy of the Cossacks' hetman.[1] On 25 February 1673 the sejm ennobled Kunicki, his five nephews (Atanazy, Wasyl, Fiedor, Dymitr, Iwan) and three more Cossacks who were loyal to the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth.[1][2] When Kunicki was coming back from Warsaw to Czehryń, he was captured by the men of Ivan Samoylovych.[3] Kunicki was detained until November 1674 when he was released after the intervention of the new Polish king Jan III Sobieski.[3] In February 1675 Dymitr Jerzy Wiśniowiecki nominated him podstarości[Clarification needed]

of Niemirów.[3] In spring 1676 he went to Moldavia to rescue his nephews and other relatives from Turkish captivity.[3] As a podstarości he also worked in the field of the intelligence service. He collected information from Polish agents about the Turkish and Tatar armies for hetman Dymitr Jerzy Wiśniowiecki.[3]

In the second half of 1676 the situation in Right-bank Ukraine changed. Petro Doroshenko was arrested by the Russians who nominated Ivan Samoylovych as his successor. This caused a reaction from Turkey. Yuri Khmelnytsky was released from Turkish prison and furnished with the title "prince of Rus".[3] Turkey chose Nemyriv as a capital of Khanate of Ukraine.[4] Nonetheless, Kunicki did not fear a Turkish or Tatar invasion of Nemyriv.[5]

On December 4, 1678 colonel Hawryło Nehrebecki captured Niemirów. It isn't known if Kunicki left town before the arrival of Nehrebecki or if he stayed for some time after 4 December.[5] Neither is it known what he did between 1678 and 1683, though he may have spent some time in Volhynia at the property of Dymitr Jerzy Wiśniowiecki.[5]

In 1683 he invaded Moldavia then advanced towards Akkerman. The Tatars knew of Kunicki's plan, so he decided to retreat and go back to Ukraine. On the Prut, Kunicki's army was overtaken by the Tatars. Kunicki escaped with his cavalry to Mohyliv. Andriy Mohyla, leader of the infantry, had to fight the Tatars alone but he successfully returned to Mohyliv. Mohyła's troops were very angry about Kunicki's behaviour[6] and he was sentenced to death and executed.[7] The infantry and cavalry proclaimed Mohyła as the new hetman.[7]

He was married to Elena Kunitskaya.

Notes[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Wagner (2005). "Materiały do biografii hetmana kozackiego Stefana Kunickiego". p. 385. 
  2. Wdowiszewski (1987). "Regesty nobilitacji w Polsce (1404-1794)". p. 89. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Wagner (2005). "Materiały do biografii hetmana kozackiego Stefana Kunickiego". p. 386. 
  4. Rawita-Gawroński (1919). Ostatni Chmielniczenko (Zarys monograficzny) 1640-1679. pp. 138–139. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Wagner (2005). "Materiały do biografii hetmana kozackiego Stefana Kunickiego". p. 387. 
  6. Rolle (1880). Zameczki podolskie. p. 208. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 Rolle (1880). Zameczki podolskie. p. 209. 

References[edit | edit source]

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