• Heorhii Potulnytskyi M.S. Hrushevskyi Institute of Ukrainian Archaeography and Source Studies, the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, 4, Triokhsviatytelska Street, Kyiv, 01601, Ukraine
Keywords: Mazepian Emigration, Crimean Question, International Policy, Versailles Cabinet, Cossack factor


Being at the political and diplomatic service of King of France Louis XV for more than three decades (from 1729 to 1759) Hryhor Orlyk, the son of the Ukrainian Hetman Pylyp Orlyk, was committed to furthering the cause of his father. Traditionally, in the context of the political tasks of the French kingdom, he addressed, on the one hand, the incorporation of the Cossack factor into the foreign policy of the Versailles Cabinet, and, on the other hand, the Crimean question. At every stage of his diplomatic service, which we have distinguished (the 1730s, 1740s, and 1750s respectively), the Hetman’s son set different tasks to resolve the Crimean issue and, accordingly, tried to implement them. Through his consistent, permanent, and persistent actions, Hryhor Orlyk contributed to the traditional matter of Hetman’s Ukraine integration into the international policy of the Versailles Cabinet, along with the Cossack and Crimean factors. 

In the 1750s, one of the last representatives of the Mazepian emigration Fedir Myrovych and Fedir Nakhymovskyi joined the corps of Orlyk’s son Hryhor. They became his effective assistants in the matter of political and legal recognition of the Cossack factor as one of the dominant foreign policy activities of the Versailles Cabinet by the French political elite.

Being in Crimea in the 1750s, Myrovych and Nakhymovskyi acted as special emissaries of the Versailles Cabinet maintaining contacts with it directly through Hryhor Orlyk. They contributed in every way to the policy of the kingdom in Crimea in connection with the activation of the Cossack factor there. Old Mazepa’s supporters assisted the Hetman’s son in the implementation of the military and political cooperation between France and Crimea and the Ottoman Empire, but they also attempted to explain the essence of Russian policy aimed at terminating the independence of the Kosh both to the Khan and to Zaporozhian Cossacks in Crimea.

The author concludes that as the envoy of the French Crown in Crimea, Hryhor Orlyk made the last attempt to involve the Crimean Khanate to the problems related to the restoration of the Cossack statehood solving the Crimean-Cossack problem, which had been consistent since the sixteenth century. All Mazepa supporters by conducting their activities in Crimea not only contributed to raising the issue of integrating the Cossack factor as an integral part into the international policy of the Versailles Cabinet, but also helped to legitimize and substantiate the latter in the concept of involving Turkey and the Crimean Khanate into the struggle for Ukraine’s liberation from Russian domination


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