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Five hryvnia Ukrainian banknote depicting Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky
Ten hryvnia banknote depicting Hetman Ivan Mazepa

Hetman was the title used by commanders of the Ruthenian (Ukrainian) Dnieper Cossacks from the end of the sixteenth century. The title hetman was adopted from the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

At the end of the sixteenth century, commanders of Zaporizhian Cossacks were called Koshovyi Otaman. As from 1572, hetman was a commander of the Registered Cossack Army (Ukrainian: Реєстрове козацьке військо) of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. From the 1648 Bohdan Khmelnytsky uprising, Hetman was the title of the head of the Cossack state, the Zaporozhian Host. Cossack hetmans had very broad powers and acted as supreme military commanders and executive leader (by issuing administrative decrees).

After the split of the territory of Ukraine along the Dnieper River by the Polish-Russian Treaty of Andrusovo 1667, Ukrainian Cossacks of the Hetmanate (and Cossack Hetmans) are known as Left-bank Cossacks and Right-bank Cossacks.

In Russia, the importance of the office of Cossack Hetman was gradually diminished in 1734-1750, and finally abolished by Catherine II of Russia in 1764.

List of hetmans

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