Stenka Razin

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Razin, Stenka

(stĕng`kä rä`zēn), d. 1671, Don CossackDon Cossacks,
Cossack settlers (see Cossacks) who in the 16th cent. founded the virtually independent republic of the Don Cossacks on the fertile steppes along the lower course of the Don River. Novocherkassk was their chief town.
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 leader, head of the peasant revolt of 1670. As commander of a band of propertyless Don Cossacks, he raided and pillaged (1667–69) through the lower Volga valley and across the Caspian Sea. On his return (1670) to the Don, Razin rebelled against the authority of the czar. His force of some 7,000 men took Tsaritsyn (now Volgograd), Astrakhan, Saratov, and Samara, and was joined by serfs, peasants, and non-Russian tribes of the middle and lower Volga region. However, he was defeated by government troops at Simbirsk (now Ulyanovsk) and fled to the Don, where the propertied Cossacks delivered him to the government. Razin was executed at Moscow. His exploits have long been celebrated in song and legend.
References in classic literature ?
Have you noticed that it is the most civilised gentlemen who have been the subtlest slaughterers, to whom the Attilas and Stenka Razins could not hold a candle, and if they are not so conspicuous as the Attilas and Stenka Razins it is simply because they are so often met with, are so ordinary and have become so familiar to us.
So dense is the material, in fact, that a single page bears the accounts of Tsar Alexei's courtship and marriage, a conspiracy involving accusations of sorcery, the birth of Peter the Great, the Cossack uprising of Stenka Razin complete with Razin's gruesome execution, and a governmental reshuffle thrown into a footnote; and such pages are far from rare.
The song hadn't even been released yet, but its melody was based on an old Russian folk song called Stenka Razin.
But whereas Colton compares the rebellious act to Khrushchev's Secret Speech of 1956 denouncing the deceased Stalin, and even less usefully to the mutinous acts of the 17th- and 18th-century Cossacks Stenka Razin and Emel'ian Pugachev, Aron more insightfully notes that timing was all.
How can I live if Peter I is great, and Bulavin, who led a revolt against him in Astrakhan, is glorious; if Peter's father Alexei Romanov is clever and Stenka Razin, bandit-leader of the Cossacks against his rule, is also a hero?
In his own review of The Furtwangler Record (Fanfare 18 [May/ June 1995]: 463) Fogel claims to have checked with the Vienna Philharmonic archivist who, in turn, found that Furtwangler had never performed Stenka Razin with that orchestra.
Other byliny may relate events from the reigns of Ivan the Terrible or Peter the Great, or deal with the Cossack rebels Stenka Razin and Yemelyan Ivanovich Pugachov.