288pp ILLUS 2007 OUT OF PRINT H445



This is an exceptional book covering 500 years of the history of the Cossacks – known variously as recklessly brave, wild horsemen, brutal mounted policemen or romantic heroes of the steppe. The author describes the world of the steppe, and then provides a more detailed analysis of the circumstances in which the Cossacks emerged and flourished in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. He then considers the relationship of the Cossacks to the surrounding states in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries through the prism of three great conflicts: the revolts of Bohdan Khelmnytsky, Stepan Razin and Emel’ian Pugachev. The author then looks at the Cossacks from the end of the Pugachev revolt in 1774 to the outbreak of the First World War, as well as the Cossacks in the Russian revolutionary period and under Soviet rule.