Brotherhood of Tarasovs
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Brotherhood of Tarasovs
Brotherhood of Taras in Kharkiv

Brotherhood of Tarasovs (Ukrainian: ?, Bratstvo tarasivtsiv) was an underground student organization. It was established in 1891 during a visit to the Taras Shevchenko burial grounds near Kaniv.

The founders included Vitaliy Borovyk, Borys Hrinchenko, Mykola Mikhnovsky, Ivan Lypa, and others. Beside cultural propaganda Tarasovs were expressing political statements for the liberation of the Ukrainian nation from Russian occupation, full autonomy for all people of the Russian Empire, and social justice.

In the small town of Hlynsk near Romny, where the students operated by the end of summer 1891, the program of the Brotherhood was established . Among them were:

  • Independent sovereign Ukraine: united and undivided from San to Kuban, from the Carpathian mountains to the Caucasus mountains free among the free, equal among the equal, and without a class stand-off in future.
  • Federation of Left-bank, Right-bank, Steppe Ukraine, Kuban and Galicia.
  • The head of state is hetman as the president and seym as parliament.
  • Freedom of religion, division between church and state, national army.
  • We won't be ourselves, if for Ukraine there is no freedom nor fate.

The ideological fundamentals of the organization were prepared by Ivan Lypa and were published in Pravda magazine in April 1893. Those ideas were later propagated by B.Hrinchenko in his Letters from the Dnieper Ukraine and Mykhailo Kotsiubynsky in his fairy tale Kho.

In summer 1893 some of the members of the society were arrested in Kharkiv, but further centers reappeared in Kiev, Odessa, Poltava to name just a few. Among other participants the members of the Brotherhood were Volodymyr Samiylenko, Vasyl Sovachiv, Yevhen Tymchenko, Oleksandr Cherniakhivsky, Volodymyr Shemet. The organization was discontinued in 1898, but under its influence another organization, Stara Hromada reestablished itself as the General Ukrainian Organization in 1897 under the initiative of Oleksandr Konysky and Volodymyr Antonovych, while the younger generation of the Hromada created the Revolutionary Ukrainian Party in 1900.

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