Cossacks always amazed people with their fearlessness and courage.
The history of the Cossacks is very long and certainly no less exciting than the history of the Russian state. Historically formed, eleven Cossack divisions rightfully occupied an important place in the Russian Empire.
So Who are They?
The origin of Cossacks is still not completely clear. There are many theories of the emergence of this sub-ethnicity in Russia, but none of them has sufficient proof.
Cossacks lived in the southern steppes of the Eastern Europe and carried out the defense of the Russian borders. By the end of the 14thcentury two main Cossack groups stood out – on the Don and the Dnieper Rivers. Gradually, they were joined by more and more immigrants from Russian principalities located to the north. By the 16thcentury Cossacks already constituted sizeable voluntary troops, which eventually became the basis of the Cossack army.
Cossacks have always adhered to the principle of “I serve for the land.” Their arms and horses were purchased and kept at their own expense. By the 19thcentury Cossacks were proclaimed a social class in Russia at the state level.
Cossacks in the History of Russia
Almost all of Russia’s wars involved the participation of Cossacks. Cossacks conducted surveillance; Cossack peaks terrified the enemy before the attacks or protected the troops during the retreats. And, of course, the Cossacks took part in battles.
But the Cossacks were useful not only during wars. Daily, from century to century they carried out difficult border service. In the vast territories Cossack outposts protected Russian borders.
Cossacks were praised by many Russian poets and writers. Cossacks have always represented boldness, liberty and devotion to duty. Their unique culture absorbed all the best from what it was surrounded by, and got filled with originality and uniqueness. Despite the fact that the history of relations between the Cossacks and the Russian state was not completely free of conflict, in the most difficult moments the Cossacks forgot all grudges and went to defend Russia.
Cossacks are still to this day protecting the borders of their state.
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