18 May 2003, 04:05

Sukhorukov, Vasily Dmitrievich

Historian, literature worker, public figure.

Born in the city of Cherkassk, Don Cossack Army Region, on January 1, 1795. From chief officers' children, was a son of a company commander. Was raised in Novocherkassk Troops Gimansia (graduated in 1812) and in Kharkov University (graduated in 1815). In 1816, started his military service as a cornet (horunzhy) in the Don Troops chancellery. In 1817-1818, sketched the statistic records of Khopyor District. From 1819 till March 1821, was a special envoy of the army's ataman. In August 1821, was appointed the record keeper of the Don Army Structure Committee, collected materials on the history of the Don Cossacks. In January 1822, was transferred to St. Petersburg and enlisted in the Leib Guard Cossack Regiment as a cornet; simultaneously was a special assistant to A.I. Chernyshev, the chairman of the Don Army Structure Committee. Since 1823, was an ancient. Since December 17, 1823, was a contributor and since 1824, was a full member of the Free Society of Russian Philology Amateurs. In 1824, published in St. Petersburg a historic almanac Russkaya Starina (Russia's Old Days) together with Decembrist A.O. Kornilovich, in which he published historic and ethnographic materials about the Don Cossacks of 17th and 18th centuries. Was acquainted with many Decembrists and writers. Due to the suspicions of his belonging to a secret society, was exiled to the Don under major general I.F. Bogdanovich's supervision.

According to testimony by Decembrists K.F. Ryleev and A.A. Bestuzhev, Sukhorukov knew about the existence of the Northern Society and its plans. Was never summoned to the Investigation Committee. By the Emperor's decree of March 13, 1826, it was ordered to leave him to serve in the Don area, not to send him to Leib Guard Cossack Regiment, to watch him closely, to report monthly on his behavior.

In late July 1827, V.D. Sukhorukov was sent to the Caucasus and stayed with I.F. Paskevich's staff, compiling the Historic Description of the War of 1828 and 1829. For the participation in Russo-Turkish war of 1828-1829, was awarded the fourth-degree order of St. Vladimir (orden Sv. Vladimira 4-oy stepeni); for the storm of Akhaltsikh, was awarded a golden dress-sword. In 1829, was one of the editors of Tiflisskiye vedomosti (News of Tiflis). In January 1830, was arrested basing on a denunciation, brought to Novocherkassk, and exiled to Finland to the Don regiment, where he stayed until September 16, 1831. From December 11, 1831, to August 13, 1834, was in the Don area; in August 1834, was sent to the Don Regiment on the Caucasus Line. Since 1837, was a senior Cossack officer (yesaul). Was demobilized on April 14, 1841. Died in Novocherkassk on August 13, 1841.

V.D. Sukhorukov was personally acquainted with A.S. Pushkin, who was interested in his destiny and in 1836 invited him to work in Sovremennik (Contemporary) magazine.

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