Nekrasov Cossacks

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Nekrasov Cossacks, Nekrasovite Cossacks, Nekrasovites, Nekrasovtsy (Russian: Некрасовцы, Некрасовские казаки, Казаки-некрасовцы) are descendants of Don Cossacks which, after the defeat of the Bulavin Rebellion fled to the Kuban (in September 1708), headed by Ignat Nekrasov, hence the name. The Kuban was then under the rule of the Crimean Khanate. Later they were joined by other fugitives from the Don and runaway Russian serfs. The Nekrasovites were Old Believers, a persecuted faith.

Initially, the Nekrasovites settled by the right bank of the Bolshaya Laba River, near its mouth. Later, the majority, including Nekrasov himself, settled on the Taman Peninsula, in three townlets (gorodoks) Bludilovsky, Golubinsky and Chiryansky (Блудиловский, Голубинский, Чирянский).

The Nekrasovites continued to raid the adjacent Russian lands, including the Don area, and, as a result, were raided in return by Russian forces. As a consequence, until 1737, several hundreds of thousands of fugitives from Southern Russia fled to the Kuban, with a significant amount joining the Nekrasovites.

About 1737 the activity of the Nekrasovites petered out, historians assuming that Nekrasov died in that year. Soon afterwards the Nekrasovite community began to disintegrate and resettled to the Ottoman Empire. See also Cossacks in Turkey.

In 1961 most Nekrasov Cossacks have returned to the U.S.S.R. They have preserved the Don Cossack language, songs, and their ethnic identity despite being away from other Cossacks for more than 200 years. There is an ongoing work for preserving the heritage of Nekrasov Cossacks.[1]

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