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The grave of ataman Sirko in Kapulovka

In the spring of 1980 a monument to Ivan Sirko, the centurion ataman of Zaporizhya army, was installed in Kapulovka, Dnepropetrovsk region. The monument was created by sculptor V. Shkonda. In the early 1990s a memorial complex of Ivan Sirko was opened to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the glorious Ukrainian Cossacks.

The grave of ataman Sirko

Among the heritage of Ukrainian Cossacks in Dnepropetrovsk region one monument stands out. This monument is the grave of Ivan Sirko, the ataman of Zaporizhya Sich. For 12 years Sirko occupied the position of the centurion ataman, and during these years he scored victories over the Polish, Crimean khanate, and Peter Doroshenko (the battles at Perekop, in the suburbs of Uman, and Kapustyanaya valley). In 1676 Sirko was the one who signed the letter that Zaporizhya Cossacks sent to Mehmet IV, the Turkish sultan. The ataman died in Grushevka village in his bee-garden. The body of Sirko was taken to Zaporozhye and buried at Chertomlyk Sich.

The bronze bust of Sirko

For a few times the body of the ataman was reburied. In 1709 the grave was destroyed, and locals had to hide it from the attackers. Originally the ataman’s grave was located outside of Kapulovka, on the bank of Kakhovka reservoir. However, in the spring of 1967 authorities decided to rebury the remains of Sirko. Half a year later the grave hill was dug out by archaeologists, and the body was taken to Kapulovka, where it was buried in an ancient mound.

Memorial plaque at Sirko's grave

The skull of the centurion ataman was taken out of the burial and transferred to Moscow for research. Russian laboratory of anthropologist M. Gerasimov, who has a Ph.D. in Historical Sciences, has already conducted the reconstruction of skeletal remains to recreate the appearance of historical figures. The work was entrusted to the Candidate of Biological Sciences G. Lebedinskaya, who is a student of Gerasimov. After the anthropological reconstruction was finished, the sculpture portrait of Ivan Sirko has been exhibited in Dnepropetrovsk historical museum of D. Yavornitsky.

Several years ago the grave of Sirko was reconstructed. Workers installed a bronze bust of the ataman that was based on the image developed in the laboratory. Sirko’s skull was taken back to Ukraine in 1990, but it was finally buried with the rest of the remains only in 2000.

Address of the grave of ataman Sirko: Dnepropetrovsk region, Nikopol district, Kapulovka village.

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