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Bill Thayer

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Public service message, 24 Feb 22: A Ukrainian historical researcher who has contributed to this site has advised me that The Ukrainian Red Cross Society is accepting donations from abroad in relief of civilian populations in Ukraine and persons displaced due to the Russian war against that country, and has set up a page for those wishing to donate. (And yes, I've donated a bit myself, about $350 thru Oct 2023.)

[image ALT: A head-and‑shoulders photograph, three-quarters right, of a middle-aged man, with a fairly full head of hair and a prominent moustache. He wears a suit and tie and is sitting at a table or desk. His right elbow rests on the table and he rests his head lightly on his hand. On the table, two books are stacked in the right foreground; he is reading a third, laid flat before him. He is Ukrainian historian Dmytro Doroshenko, the author of the book presented on this webpage.]

Survey of Ukrainian Historiography

Dmytro Doroshenko

The Author and the Book

The Ukrainian writer Dmytro Doroshenko (1882‑1951) is one of the two great Ukrainian historians of the twentieth century: a good biographical and bibliographical summary is provided by an entry in the Internet Encyclopedia of Ukraine. Like his liberal counterpart Mykhaylo Hrushevsky, he would serve briefly in one of the governments of Ukraine, but as a conservative, during its very brief independence bracketed by Russian dominations: that of czarist Russia before, of Soviet Russia afterwards. Both historians escaped the clutches of Russia in 1919; unlike Hrushevsky though, Doroshenko did not trust Russia enough to return to Ukraine, and thus avoided a long imprisonment and an unhappy death in official banishment: he lived the remainder of his life in Prague and in Canada, where he published most of his major works, notably Нарис історії України (1932‑1933), a two-volume work which was later abridged and translated into English as History of the Ukraine (also onsite, in full).

The work introduced on this page, A Survey of Ukrainian Historiography, is an English translation of the writer's Ukrainian-language book of 1923, Огляд української історіографії, with some minor cuts and corrections (see the preface, p10); to which historian Olexander Ohloblyn added another 120‑some pages to bring it up to date as of 1957. It is a massive bibliographical catalogue raisonné of thousands of historical works by Ukrainians and related writers on Ukrainian history, from the earliest Kievan Chronicle of the ninth century thru writers of the 20th century. Presented in chronological slices each one consisting of an introductory essay followed by the bibliography proper, it's a comprehensive sourcebook of Ukrainian history, and more importantly, exactly what its title promises: a record of what Ukrainians thought about their own history for almost 1200 years.

Ukrainian historian Elie Borschak, in stating that it's just a handbook for students, is on target — but rather less so when he goes on to say that there are no original ideas in it. Still, he points us to further works in the same line:

On comprend dès lors avec quelle curiosité a été accueilli l'ouvrage de D. Dorošenko, professeur à l'Université de Varsovie : Aperçu de l'historiographie ukrainienne [Ohliad ukrajnskoij istoriohrafii, in‑8o, 221 p.], qui ne s'arrête, lui, qu'à la Révolution de 1917. Malheureusement, ce n'est qu'un simple manuel à l'usage des étudiants, où l'auteur se borne à énumérer ce qui a été fait par ses prédécesseurs dans les differentes branches de l'historiographie. On ne saurait comparer cette étude, où les idées originales sont absentes, à l'ouvrage de M. Miljukov sur les principaux courants de la pensée historique russe, ni meme à celui d'Ikonnikov, si copieux et si consciencieux, sur l'historiographie russe. Nous ne trouvons ici, en dernière analyse, qu'une bibliographie nourrie d'abondantes citations d'historiens ukrainiens. La méthode chronologique l'oblige à revenir, parfois à plusieurs reprises, sur le même personnage. Enfin, la littérature étrangère manque. (This last statement is not strictly true, see p71 ff., p205 ff.)

"Histoire de l'Ukraine : Publications en langue ukrainienne parues en dehors de l'U. R. S. S.",
in Revue Historique, T. 187, Fasc. 1, Bulletins Critiques (1939), p2.

As will be seen below, all of Doroshenko's original book is already onsite; Ohloblyn's supplement is on its way as well.

For technical details on how this site is laid out, see below, following the Table of Contents.

 (p5)  Contents





Ukrainian Chronicles; Chronicles from XI‑XIII Centuries


"Lithuanian" or West Rus′ Chronicles


Snyodyky or Pomyannyky


National Movement in XVI‑XVII Centuries and the Revival of Historical Tradition in Literature


Ukrainian Chronicles of the XVII Century; The "Cossack Chronicles"


The Cossack Chroniclers


Ukrainian Memoirs; Autobiographies, Notes, Diaries


The Ukrainian Past in Foreign Historiography of the XVIII Century


Ukrainian Historiography at the Beginning of the National Renaissance


Istoria Rusov


 (p6)  First Efforts to Collect and Publish Ukrainian Historical Material


Historical Themes in Ukrainian Literature of the XVIII Century


Ukrainian Historiography in the Early XIX Century; Studies of Regional History; New Attempts at a Synthesis


The Development of Ethnographical Studies and Their Relation to Historiography; a "People" as an Object of Research


Publishers of Historical Materials and Researchers into Local Antiquity


Official Steps to Organize Archeographic Research in the Ukraine; Attempts to Found a Publication Devoted to Ukrainian History


The Ukrainian National Revival in the Right-Bank Ukraine; The "Ukrainian School" in Polish Literature; The "Khlopomany"; Volodymyr Antonovych


The Southwestern Section of the Geographic Society in Kiev; Mykhaylo Drahomanov


Kievskaya Starina and Its Closer Collaborators


Research on Ukrainian History in Russian and Polish Historiography


Research on Ukrainian History in the 1880's and 1890's


Mykhaylo Hrushevsky and the Shevchenko Scientific Society in Lviv


First Decades of the Twentieth Century; Scholarship in the Dnieper Ukraine


 (p7)  Ukrainian Historiography, 1917‑1956
by Olexander Ohloblyn

Ukrainian Historiography in the Dnieper Ukraine


Ukrainian Historiography in Galicia


Historiography of the Carpathian Ukraine


Ukrainian Historiography Outside the Ukraine




A Note on Transliteration


List of Abbreviations




Technical Details

Edition Used and Copyright

The copy I used for this transcription is my hard copy of the first (and possibly only) edition: "Published by the Ukrainian Academy of Arts and Sciences in the U. S., Inc.", and marked "Copyright 1957" by the same publisher.

Since the book was published in the United States, its copyright status is governed by American law, which at the time protected copyright for a term of 28 years after publication: and for 28 years after that if the copyright was "renewed" with the Copyright Office — which this one was not. Our book thus rose into the public domain on January 1, 1986: details here on the copyright law involved.


The book is unillustrated except for the frontispiece (above): a portrait of the author.

For citation and indexing purposes, the pagination is shown in the right margin of the text at the page turns (like at the end of this line); p57  these are also local anchors. Sticklers for total accuracy will of course find the anchor at its exact place in the sourcecode.

In addition, I've inserted a number of other local anchors: whatever links might be required to accommodate the author's own cross-references, as well as a few others for my own purposes. If in turn you have a website and would like to target a link to some specific passage of the text, please let me know: I'll be glad to insert a local anchor there as well.


As almost always, I retyped the text by hand rather than scanning it — not only to minimize errors prior to proofreading, but as an opportunity for me to become intimately familiar with the work, an exercise which I heartily recommend: Qui scribit, bis legit. (Well-meaning attempts to get me to scan text, if success­ful, would merely turn me into some kind of machine: gambit declined.)

My transcription is being minutely proofread. In the table of contents above, the sections are shown on blue backgrounds, indicating that I believe the text of them to be completely errorfree; a red background would mean that the page had not been proofread. As elsewhere onsite, the header bar at the top of each chapter's webpage will remind you with the same color scheme.

The printed book was very well proofread, with a very few minor errors, which I've corrected with a dotted underscore like this: as elsewhere on my site, glide your cursor over the underscored words to read what was actually printed. More consequential errors will be marked with a bullet like thisº or even with a clarifying footnote: as elsewhere on my site, glide your cursor over bullets or underscored words to read the variants. Similarly, bullets before measurements provide conversions to metric, e.g., 10 miles. A few odd spellings, curious turns of phrase, etc. have been marked <!‑‑ sic  in the sourcecode, just to confirm that I did check them.

One mistake — by our modern standards — that I neither flagged nor changed, however, is important. The text refers almost always to "the Ukraine" rather than to what is now, in our hopefully post-Soviet era, considered the correct form of speech, just plain "Ukraine" with no article: for why this seriously matters, see Kathryn Graber's excellent explanation at Sapiens.Org.

Any over­looked mistakes, please drop me a line, of course: especially if you have a copy of the printed book in front of you.

[image ALT: A schematic view of three books on a table; two of them stacked in the right foreground, and one of them prominently open in the center of the frame. The image serves as the icon on this site for my transcription of 'Survey of Ukrainian Historiography' by Dmytro Doroshenko.]

The icon indicating this subsite is what seemed a suitable crop of the book's frontispiece: books, of course, in the Ukrainian national colors.

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Site updated: 30 Oct 22