Sylvester Kossov

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Sylvester Kossov (Russian: Сильвестр Коссов, Ukrainian: Сильвестр Косів, Belarusian: Сільвестр Косаў; born ? Vitebsk Voivodeship, Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, died 13 April 1657) was an Eastern Orthodox Church metropolitan and writer. He served as metropolitan of Kiev (1647-1657) during the Khmelnytsky uprising. His official title was Metropolitan of Kiev, Galychyna and All-Rus'.


Kossov was a descendant of a noble Belarusian family. He studied at the Vilnius Brotherhood School and at the Catholic academies in Lublin and Zamość before beginning to teach at the Lviv Dormition Brotherhood School. In 1631, Metropolitan Petro Mohyla requested that Kosiv be a lecturer at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. He became the prefect of the school, and developed close ties with Mohyla.


In 1635 he became bishop of Mstsislau, Orsha, and Mahiliou. In 1647 he became the metropolitan of Kiev. This was during the Khmelnytsky Uprising, a time of uncertainty in Ukraine and in the Ukrainian church. Kosiv himself was strongly opposed to union with Tsardom of Russia, and also against unreserved alliance with Poland. Despite being critical of some of the policies of the Cossacks, he attempted to rectify the situation and gave Bohdan Khmelnytsky a hero's welcome when he entered Kiev in December 1648. Kosiv strived for an independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church that would be only under the jurisdiction of the Patriarch of Constantinople, and he fought against the subjugation of the Kiev metropolate to Moscow.


He authored works on the Seven Sacraments and Orthodox schools, and also translated works into Polish.


Preceded by
Peter Mogila
Metropolitan of Kiev, Galychyna and All-Rus'
Succeeded by
Dionysius Balaban