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For other uses, see Poltava (disambiguation).
Top left: Poltava City Hall on Kruhla Ploshcha, Top right: Poltava Uspenskiy Cathedral, 2nd left: Halushka Monument on Soborna Ploshcha, 2nd right: White Rotunda on Soborna Ploshcha, 3rd left: Glory Park and Memorial of Sodier of Glory, 3rd right: A shopping center in downtown Poltava, Bottom left: Gogol Theater, Bottom right: Butovsky Vorskla Stadium
Top left: Poltava City Hall on Kruhla Ploshcha, Top right: Poltava Uspenskiy Cathedral, 2nd left: Halushka Monument on Soborna Ploshcha, 2nd right: White Rotunda on Soborna Ploshcha, 3rd left: Glory Park and Memorial of Sodier of Glory, 3rd right: A shopping center in downtown Poltava, Bottom left: Gogol Theater, Bottom right: Butovsky Vorskla Stadium
Flag of Poltava
Coat of arms of Poltava
Coat of arms
Poltava is located in Poltava Oblast
Location of Poltava in Poltava Oblast.
Coordinates: 49°35′22″N 34°33′05″E / 49.58944°N 34.55139°E / 49.58944; 34.55139Coordinates: 49°35′22″N 34°33′05″E / 49.58944°N 34.55139°E / 49.58944; 34.55139
Country  Ukraine
Oblast Poltava Oblast
Founded 8991
Named for Ltava River
 • Mayor Oleksandr Mamay
 • Total 103 km2 (40 sq mi)
Population (2015)
 • Total 294,962
 • Density 2,864/km2 (7,420/sq mi)
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 • Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)
Postal code 36000—36499
Area code(s) +380-532
Licence plate CK, BI
Sister cities Filderstadt, Ostfildern, Veliko Tarnovo, Lublin, Nice
Website www.rada-poltava.gov.ua/foreign/
1 The previously believed foundation date was 1174.
Shield of Poltava Regiment
Shield of Poltava Regiment headquarters
Russian shield of Poltava

Poltava (Ukrainian, Russian: Полта́ва, Ukrainian pronunciation: [poɫˈtɑwɑ]) is a city located on the Vorskla River in central Ukraine. It is the capital city of the Poltava Oblast (province) and of the surrounding Poltava Raion (district) of the oblast. Poltava's estimated population is 294,962 as of 2015.[1]


It is still unknown when Poltava was founded, although the town was not attested before 1174. However, for reasons unknown, municipal authorities chose to celebrate the city's 1100th anniversary in 1999. The settlement is indeed an old one, as archeologists unearthed a Paleolithic dwelling as well as Scythian remains within the city limits.

Middle Ages[edit]

The present name of the city is traditionally connected to the settlement Ltava which is mentioned in the Hypatian Chronicle in 1174.[2][3] According to the chronicle, on the Saint Peter's Day (12 July) of 6682 Igor Sviatoslavich chasing hordes of Cuman khans Konchak and Kobiak crossed Vorskla River near Ltava and moved towards Pereyaslav (presumably the modern Pereiaslav-Khmelnytskyi) where Igor's army was victories over the Cumans.[2] With the Mongol invasion of Rus' in 1238-39 many cities of the middle Dnieper region were destroyed and possibly among which could have been the city of Ltava.[2]

In the mid 14th century the region was part of the Duchy of Kiev that was a vassal of the Algirdas' Grand Duchy of Lithuania.[2] According to the Russian historian Aleksandr Shennikov, the region around modern Poltava was a Cuman Duchy of Mansur who was a son of Mamai.[4] Shennikov also claims that the Mansur Duchy joined the Grand Duchy of Lithuania as an associated state rather than a vassal state and the city of Poltava already existed at that time.[4] In 1399 the army of Mansur assisted the army of Grand Duchy of Lithuania in battle of the Vorskla River, while a legend says that after it Cossack Mamay helped Vytautas to escape his death.[4]

The city for the first time is mentioned under the name of Poltava no later than 1430.[2] Supposedly in 1430 the Lithuanian duke Vytautas gave the city along with Glinsk (today a village near the city of Romny) and Glinitsa to Murza Olexa (Loxada Mansurxanovich) who moved to the Grand Duchy of Lithuania from the Golden Horde.[2] In 1430 Murza Olexa was baptized as Alexander Glinsky who was a progenitor of the Glinsky family.[2] According to the same Shenninkov, Alexander Glinsky must have been baptized in 1390 by Cyprian, Metropolitan of Kiev who just regained his title of Metropolitan of Kiev and all Russia (rather than the Metropolitan of Russia Minor and Lithuania) and on 6 March 1390 permanently moved to Muscovy.[4]

In 1482 Poltava was razed by the Crimean Khan Mengli I Giray.[2]

Modern Age[edit]

In 1537 Ografena Vasylivna Glinska (Baibuza) passed Poltava to her son-in-law Mykhailo Ivanovych Hrybunov-Baibuza.[2]

After the Union of Lublin in 1569, the territory around Poltava was passed to the Crown of Poland. In 1630 Poltava was passed to a Polish magnate Bartholomew Obalkowski.[2] In 1641 it changed its owner again whom was Alexander Koniecpolski.[2] In 1646 Poltava became part of Wiśniowiecki Ordynatsia (a big Wiśniowiecki estate in Left-bank Ukraine centered in Lubny) governed by the Ruthenian-Polish magnate Jeremi Wiśniowiecki (1612–51).[2] In 1648 Poltava was the base of a distinguished regiment of the Ukrainian Cossacks, and served as a Cossack stronghold during the Khmelnytsky Uprising.[2] To commemorate a victory of Cossack Host over the Polish army at the Poltavka River, in 1650 on the order of Metropolitan of Kiev Sylvester Kossov in Poltava was established the monastery of the Exaltation of the Cross that was financed by number of local residents among which were Martyn Pushkar, Ivan Iskra, Ivan Kramar and many others.[2]

During the 1654 Pereyaslav Council, the Poltava city delegates pledged their allegiance to the Czar of Muscovy, after which stolnik Andrei Spasitelev arrived to Poltava and recorded 1,335 residents who pledged their allegiance.[2] In 1658 Poltava became a center of anti-government revolt led by the local leader Martyn Pushkar who contested legitimacy of Ivan Vyhovsky's election to the post of Hetman of Zaporizhian Host.[2] The uprising was extinguished with help of Crimean Tatars.[2] On the issue boyar Vasily Borisovich Sheremetev wrote to Alexei Mikhailovich on 8 June 1658: "... the Circassian city of Plotava is ravaged and burned to the ground and only if the Great Sovereign orders to rebuilt on the Tatar Sokma (pathway) of Bakeyev Route and protect many his sovereign cities from Tatar visits. And if the Great Sovereign allows to place a voivode in the city and rebuilt the city until the fall that in Plotava Circassians and residents built their houses and stock-piled their food".[2] With the signing of the 1667 truce of Andrusovo, the city became part of the Tsardom of Muscovy, while remaining part of the Cossack Hetmanate.

The city suffered from the Great Turkish War when in 1695 Petro Ivanenko led anti-Muscovite uprising with help of Crimean Tatars who ravaged the local monastery.[2] The same year the Poltava Regiment actively participated in the Azov campaigns which resulted in taken the Turkish fortress Kyzy-Kermen (today the city of Beryslav, Kherson Oblast).[2] On 8 July (New Style) or 27 June (Old Style) 1709 near the city took place the battle of Poltava of the Great Northern War between Muscovite and Swedish armies.[2] For Russia the battle had a huge historical meaning.[2] In 1710 in city and its surroundings there was a plague.[2] On 13 July 1752 Poltava Colonel Andriy Horlenko reported to the Hetman of Little Russia (Hetman of Zaporizhian Host) Kyrylo Rozumovsky that in the Kolomak Woods are haidamaks.[2]

In 1770 Poltava had several brick factories, a regimental doctor and pharmacy, during a year the city conducted four fairs.[2] On 9 August 1774 the commander of Dnieper Pike Regiment 100 people to guard the city from haidamaka detachments that were located near the Kolomak River.[2] In 1775 Poltava became a city of Novorossiysk Governorate guarded by the 8th Company of the Dnieper Pike Regiment headquartered in Kobeliaky.[2] In 1775 the Poltava's Monastery of the Exaltation of the Cross (Russian: Крестовоздвиженский монастырь, Krestovozdvizhensky Monastyr) became the seat of bishops of the newly created Eparchy (Diocese) of Slaviansk and Kherson. This large new diocese included the lands of the Novorossiya Governorate and Azov Governorate north of the Black Sea. Since much of that area had been only recently conquered by Russia from the Ottoman Empire, and a large number of Orthodox Greek settlers had been invited to settle in the region, the Imperial Government selected a renowned Greek scholar, Eugenios Voulgaris to preside over the new diocese. After his retirement in 1779, he was replaced by another Greek theologian, Nikephoros Theotokis.[5][6]

In 1776-1779 Alexander Suvorov visited Poltava on several occasions.[2] In 1779 in the city was established the Poltava county school which became the first secular educational institution.[2] In 1787 Catherine the Great stopped in Poltava on the way from Crimea and was escorted by Grigori Potemkin, Alexander Suvorov and Mikhail Kutuzov.[2] On 7 June 1787 before another Russo-Turkish War here in Poltava Potemkin received his title "Prince of Taurida", while Suvorov received a snuffbox with monogram.[2] In 1797-1803 in Poltava existed the first city hospital on 50 beds which was privately funded.[2] In 1802 the city became a seat of the newly established Poltava Governorate.[2] The Poltava's population in 1802 accounted for some 8,000 residents.[2] The same year in the city was opened a government funded city hospital on 20 beds.[2]

On 2 February 1808 there was established the Poltava Male Gymnasium.[2] On 20 June 1808 to Poltava were invited some 54 families of craftsmen (249 people) from German principalities for whom in Poltava was established German Sloboda neighborhood with about 50 clay-made houses.[2] In 1810 in Poltava lived 8,328 people.[2] In 1810 in the German colony was built the first city theater.[2] In August 1812 on orders of Little Russia Governor General Lobanov-Rostovsky, Ivan Kotlyarevsky forms the 5th Poltava Cavalry Cossack Regiment.[2]

In World War II, the Wehrmacht occupied Poltava from late October 1941 until 23 September 1943, when it was retaken during the Chernigov-Poltava Strategic Offensive of the battle of the Dnieper. During the Nazi occupation the Jewish population (9,9% of the total population in 1939) is imprisoned in a ghetto before being murdered during mass executions perpetrated by an Einsatzgruppe.[7] By the summer of 1944 the USAAF conducted a number of shuttle bombing raids against the Third Reich under the name of Operation Frantic. Poltava Air Base, as well as Myrhorod Air Base, were used as eastern locations for landing B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers involved in those operations.


Climate data for Poltava
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 11.0
Average high °C (°F) −3.1
Daily mean °C (°F) −5.5
Average low °C (°F) −8.3
Record low °C (°F) −32.2
Average precipitation mm (inches) 40.7
Average precipitation days 19.2 15.7 15.7 9.0 9.6 9.2 6.9 4.7 9.3 10.8 14.4 17.9 142.4
Average relative humidity (%) 86.7 83.6 76.8 61.4 61.0 65.8 66.7 60.3 70.5 78.3 86.5 87.9 73.8
Mean monthly sunshine hours 68.2 76.3 133.3 183.0 266.6 294.0 300.7 285.2 216.0 142.6 60.0 43.4 2,069.3
Source #1: Climatebase.ru[8]
Source #2: Hong Kong Observatory (sun data).[9]
The Column of Glory commemorates the centenary of the Battle of Poltava (1709).
The 200th Anniversary celebrations of the Battle of Poltava in June 1909

Government and subdivisions[edit]

Building of the regional administration (by Vasyl Krychevsky)
Theological seminary, which during the World War I was converted into a military school quartering the Vilno Cadet School

Poltava is the administrative center of the Poltava Oblast (province) as well as of the Poltava Raion housed within the city. However, Poltava is a city of oblast subordinance, thus being subject directly to the oblast authorities rather to the raion administration housed in the city itself.

Poltava's government consists of the 50-member Poltava City Council (Ukrainian: Полтавська Міська рада) which is headed by the Secretary (currently Oleksandr Kozub). The city's current mayor is Oleksandr Mamay, who was sworn in on 4 November 2010 after being elected with more than 61 percent of the vote.[10] In 2015 he was re-elected as a candidate of Conscience of Ukraine with 62.9% in a second round of Mayoral election.[11]

The territory of Poltava is divided into 3 administrative raions (districts):[12]

  1. Shevchenkivsky Raion,[13][14] to the south-west with an area of 2077 hectares and a population of 147,600 in 2005. It's a largely residential area and includes the city centre.
  2. Kyivsky Raion,[15] is the largest by area, comprising 5437 hectares, or 52.8% of the city total situated in the north and north-west. Its census in 2005 was 111,900. This district has a large industrial zone.
  3. Podilsky Raion,[16] to the east and south-east, in the valley of the Vorskla river, with an area of 2988 hectares and a population of 53,700 in 2005.

The village of Rozsoshentsi, Scherbani, Tereshky, Kopyly and Suprunivka are officially considered to be outside the city, but actually constitute a part of the Poltava agglomeration.


The Kyivskyi Vokzal, the city's main railway station.

Poltava's transportation infrastructure consists of two major train stations with railway links to Kiev, Kharkiv, and Kremenchuk. Poltava's Kiev line is electrified and is used by the Poltava Express. The electrification of the Poltava-Kharkiv line was completed in August 2008.[17]

The Avtovokzal serves as the city's intercity bus station. Buses for local municipal routes depart from "AC-2" (autostation No. 2 – along Shevchenko street) and "AC-3" (Zinkivska street). Local municipal routes are parked along the Taras Shevchenko Street. Marshrutka minibuses serve areas where regular bus access is unavailable; however, they are privately owned and cost more per ride. In addition, a 15-route trolleybus network of 72.6 kilometres (45.1 mi) runs throughout the city.

Poltava is also served by a domestic airport, situated outside the city limits near the village of Ivashky. The international highway M03, linking Poltava with Kiev and Kharkiv, passes through the southern outskirts of the city. There is also a regional highway P-17 crossing Poltava and linking it with Kremenchuk and Sumy.[18]


Poltava has always been one of the most important science and education centres in Ukraine. Major universities and institutions of higher education include the following:


  • Poltava gravimetric observatory (PGO) is situated a bit north from city centre (27–29 Miasoyedov St.). Its main work directions are measurements of Earth rotation, latitude variations (applying zenith stars observations, lunar occultation observations and other)
  • Observational station of PGO in rural area, some 20 km east along the M03-E40 highway. Radiotelescope URAN-2 (Ukrainian: УРАН-2) is situated there too.


Alexander Square in 1850

The centre of the old city is a semicircular Neoclassical square with the Tuscan column of cast iron (1805–11), commemorating the centenary of the Battle of Poltava and featuring 18 Swedish cannons captured in that battle. As Peter the Great celebrated his victory in the Saviour church, this 17th-century wooden shrine was carefully preserved to this day. The five-domed city cathedral, dedicated to the Exaltation of the Cross, is a superb monument of Cossack Baroque, built between 1699 and 1709. As a whole, the cathedral presents a unity which even the Neoclassical belltower has failed to mar. Another frothy Baroque church, dedicated to the Dormition of the Theotokos, was destroyed in 1934 and rebuilt in the 1990s.

A minor planet 2983 Poltava discovered in 1981 by Soviet astronomer Nikolai Stepanovich Chernykh is named after the city.[19]


The most popular sport is football(soccer). Two professional football(soccer) teams are based in the city: Vorskla Poltava in the Ukrainian Premier League and FC Poltava in the Second League. There are 3 stadiums in Poltava: Butovsky Vorskla Stadium (main city stadium), Dynamo Stadium are situated in the city centre and Lokomotiv Stadium which is situated in Podil district.

Famous people from Poltava and its region[edit]

Nikolai Gogol

International relations[edit]

Twin towns – Sister cities[edit]

Poltava is twinned with:



  1. ^ "Чисельність наявного населення України" [Actual population of Ukraine] (PDF) (in Ukrainian). State Statistics Service of Ukraine. Retrieved 22 March 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an Poltava: chronicles of the most important events. "History of Poltava" website.
  3. ^ Antipovich, G., Buryak, Voloskov, V., others. Poltava: a book for tourists. Ed.2. "Prapor". Kharkiv, 1989.
  4. ^ a b c d Duchy of the Mamai's descendents. Zarusskiy.org. 29 June 2008
  5. ^ Евгений Булгарис (Eugenios Voulgaris's biography) (Russian)
  6. ^ Никифор Феотоки (Nikephoros Theotoki's biography) (Russian)
  7. ^ http://www.yadvashem.org/untoldstories/database/index.asp?cid=515
  8. ^ "Climatological Normals for Poltava, Ukraine (1949-2011)". Climatebase. Retrieved 21 April 2013. 
  9. ^ "Climatological Information for Poltava, Ukraine". Hong Kong Observatory. Retrieved 4 September 2012. 
  10. ^ "Oleksandr Mamay won at the elections for the mayor of Poltava" (in Ukrainian). Dzerkalo Tyzhnya. 6 November 2010. Retrieved 14 May 2011. 
  11. ^ Mamai reelected as Poltava mayor – election commission, Interfax-Ukraine (16 November 2015)
  12. ^ "Poltavska Oblast, city of Poltava (raion councils of the cities)" (in Ukrainian). Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. Retrieved 4 January 2009. 
  13. ^ "Official resource." (in Ukrainian). Oktiabrskyi Raion Council of Poltava. 2008. Retrieved 3 January 2009. 
  14. ^ "Information of the Oktiabrskyi Raion of Poltava" (in Ukrainian). Poltava City Council. 2007. Retrieved 3 January 2009. 
  15. ^ "Information of the Kyivskyi Raion of Poltava" (in Ukrainian). Poltava City Council. 2007. Retrieved 3 January 2009. 
  16. ^ "Information of the Leninskyi Raion of Poltava" (in Ukrainian). Poltava City Council. 2007. Retrieved 3 January 2009. 
  17. ^ "Poltava-Kharkiv rail line" (in Russian). Retrieved 21 September 2008. 
  18. ^ Poltava – Plan. Kiev Army-Cartographic Fabric.
  19. ^ Schmadel, Lutz D. (2003). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names (5th ed.). New York: Springer Verlag. p. 246. ISBN 3-540-00238-3. 

External links[edit]