Demetrios Ypsilantis

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Dimitrios Ypsilantis
Dimitrios Ypsilantis - Sp. Prosalentis.JPG
Native name
Greek: Δημήτριος Υψηλάντης
Romanian: Dumitru Ipsilanti
Constantinople, Ottoman Empire
Died(1832-08-16)16 August 1832
Nafplion, Greece
AllegianceRussian Empire Russian Empire
First Hellenic Republic Greece
Years of service1814–1832
Commands heldGeneral of the First Hellenic Republic
Battles/warsWar of the Sixth Coalition
Greek War of Independence

Demetrios Ypsilantis (also spelt using Dimitrios, Demetrius and/or Ypsilanti; Greek: Δημήτριος Υψηλάντης; Romanian: Dumitru Ipsilanti; 1793 – August 16, 1832) was a member of the prominent Phanariot Greek family Ypsilantis, dragomans of the Ottoman Empire. He served as an officer in the Imperial Russian Army and played an important role in the Greek War of Independence. Ypsilantis was the brother of Alexander Ypsilantis, leader of Filiki Eteria.

Early life[edit]

A member of an important Phanariote family, he was the second son of Prince Constantine Ypsilantis of Moldavia. He was sent to France where he was educated at a French military school.

Union of Moldavia and Wallachia[edit]

He distinguished himself as a Russian officer in the campaign of 1814.[1]

In 1821 he took part in the Wallachian uprising under the leadership of his brother Alexandros, that indirectly benefited the Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia.[2]

The Greek War of Independence[edit]

The flag of the Sacred Band.
A bust of Demetrius Ypsilantis in front of the Ypsilanti Water Tower in Ypsilanti Michigan, United States.

After the failure of the uprising in Wallachia, he went to the Morea (Peloponessus), where the Greek War of Independence had just broken out, as representative of Filiki Eteria and his brother.

He was one of the most conspicuous of the Phanariote leaders during the early stages of the revolt, though he was much hampered by the local chiefs and by the civilian element headed by Alexandros Mavrokordatos;[1] as a result the organisation of a regular army was slowed and operations were limited.[3] He took part in the sieges of Tripolitsa, Nafplion and the Battle of Dervenakia, securing the Greek dominion in Morea.

On 15 January 1822, he was elected president of the legislative assembly. However, due to the failure of his campaign in central Greece, and his failure to obtain a commanding position in the national convention of Astros, he was compelled to retire in 1823.[4] After the landing of Ibrahim at Morea, he took part in the defence of Naplion in the Battle of the Lerna Mills.

In 1828, he was appointed in the new established regular army by Ioannis Kapodistrias as commander of the troops in eastern Greece. On 25 September 1829, he successfully compelled Aslan Bey to capitulate at the Pass of Petra (Battle of Petra), thus ending the active operations of the war.[4]


He was known for an affair with Manto Mavrogenous, who was a Greek heroine of the Greek War of Independence.


Demetrius Ypsilantis by Adam Friedel
The funerary monument of Dimitrios Υpsilantis in Nafplion.

He died due to illness in Nafplion, Greece on August 16, 1832.


  • The city of Ypsilanti, Michigan in the United States; founded in 1823, during the Greek struggle for independence; is named after him.[5] A bust of Demetrios Ypsilanti stands between American and Greek flags at the base of the landmark Ypsilanti Water Tower.
  • Ypsilanti, North Dakota, USA was named by a person from Ypsilanti, Michigan, and is thus also indirectly named after Demetrios Ypsilanti.
  • Ypsilanti in Talbot County, Georgia, USA was once a relatively important cotton growing centre but “is now (2010) merely a crossroads with a reported five residences."[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b  One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Ypsilanti s.v. Demetrios Ypsilanti". Encyclopædia Britannica. 28 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 942.
  2. ^ East, The Union of Moldavia and Wallachia, 1859, p. 8.
  3. ^ John S. Koliopoulos, Brigands with a Cause - Brigandage and Irredentism in Modern Greece 1821-1912, Clarendon Press Oxford (1987), p. 68.
  4. ^ a b Chisholm 1911.
  5. ^ Scriba, Jay (15 October 1970). "From Sleepy Eye to Chicken Bristle, USA". The Milwaukee Journal. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  6. ^ "Ypsilanti's Yonder - Ypsilanti Gleanings". Retrieved 27 August 2016.


  • East, The Union of Moldavia and Wallachia, 1859 - An Episode in Diplomatic History, Thirlwall Prize Essay for 1927, Cambridge University Press (1929).

External links[edit]