Theoretical legislative discourse in the legal status of Registered Cossacks

  • Vitalii Makarchuk Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv
Keywords: legal status, Registered Cossacks, Cossacks’ rights, privileges and freedoms


The paper gives, in the context of theoretical legislative discourse, a comprehensive analysis of the legal status concept from the date of its independent definition in the 1960-s, when Soviet scientists identified it with the legal authority and did not consider it to be a law category, till the changes in the perestroika period, when the legal status category was developed profoundly in Theoretical Law literature and it became one of the key concepts in General theory of Law as well as in other fields of Law «Legal status» concept has not been treated univocally in modern Law papers and it still remains controversial.

The legal status of Cossacks can be treated ambivalently, particularly in terms of its status as a military corporation on the one hand, and, on the other hand, as an individual Registered Cossack. Herewith, the category of «legal status» is mentioned to be an integrated phenomenon of modern law reality mainly. It is used in Constitutional law relationships, can be related to civil and administrative law, i.e. is an interdisciplinary notion. The Medieval national law science, particularly contractual (obligation) relationships, used the terms of «rights and freedoms» which, in fact, denoted modern term of «legal status». They are found in some documents of the epoch, including the context of Registered Cossacks. Thus, it is found in a well-known Chart by Stephan Batoriy, 1578, in the agreements of XVII century between Polish authorities and the revolted Ukrainian Cossacks where the basic demand was increase in Registered Cossacks number and in agreements between Ukrainian hetmans and Russian tsars of the late XVII-early XVIII centuries.

The notion of «freedoms» undergone a dynamic development from personal and status freedoms to their decadency as a holdover due to the Great October revolution and setting the Soviet authority in Ukraine in the early XX century.

Cossacks commanders of the researched epoch strived, above all things, for confirming their previous freedoms while Cossacks governors did not differ much from that the Central Europe aristocracy since both treated their personal legal status as realization of their personal «freedoms» and «privileges».

Thus, we consider applying the «legal status» term appropriate in studying the set of rights and freedoms of Registered Cossacks and individual Cossacks as a legal entity and their commanders who were given by the authorities some individual privileges as individual entities.Legal status of both Cossacks and their commanders is defined through their competency. i.e. obligations, rights and freedoms prescript in the legislation of the countries which used Registered Cossacks as a military unit as well as in the customary rules Ukrainians Cossacks used in their everyday military life.


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How to Cite
Makarchuk, V. (2019). Theoretical legislative discourse in the legal status of Registered Cossacks. Administrative Law and Process, (2(16), 162-170. Retrieved from
History of domestic law