Minister of Land Affairs V. M. Leontovych: the final of the agrarian reform of Hetman Pavlo Skoropadskyi (october – november 1918)

Main Article Content

Ruslan Pyrih


The purpose of the study is to highlight the participation of the Minister of Land Affairs V. Leontovych in the
implementation of the agrarian reform, his influence on its final stage.
Scientific novelty: for the first time, the activity of V. Leontovych as a minister of the Hetman’s government was specifically
Conclusions. After coming to power, P. Skoropadskyi declared a broad agrarian reform based on the primacy of private
property rights. In May-August, the ministry staff and the special land commission prepared a number of bills important for
the reform. However, the mechanism of the purchase of land by the State Land Bank from landowners for sale to small-land
peasants was not used. In the autumn of 1918, P. Skoropadskyi realized the danger of delaying the land reform. V. Leontovych, a
well-known Ukrainian figure, landowner and philanthropist, became the new Minister of Land Affairs. His government activity
lasted only two weeks. He was engaged in the formation of a special land meeting, which he never had time to complete. At
P. Skoropadskyi’s request, he submitted a plan for land reform, in which P. Skoropadskyi lost interest soon. The government
approved several bills prepared by the previous ministry. However, they could no longer influence the course of land reform.
The new geopolitical realities forced the hetman to seek the salvation of Ukrainian statehood on the way to the revival of
Russia. The land reform has lost its meaning so much that there was no relevant ministry in the structure of the new government.
In retrospect, V. Leontovych tried to somewhat hyperbolize his own role in the implementation of the land reform. Pro-hetman
historiography also connects it primarily with his name, ignoring P. Skoropadskyi’s authoritative unequivocal statement: «The
law was developed by Kolokoltsov». V. Leontovych suffered a difficult emigrant fate and only his literary talent allowed him
to earn a living.

Article Details

How to Cite
Pyrih, R. (2023). Minister of Land Affairs V. M. Leontovych: the final of the agrarian reform of Hetman Pavlo Skoropadskyi (october – november 1918). Ukrainian Peasant, (29).
Agrarian history in names
Author Biography

Ruslan Pyrih, Institute of History of Ukraine

Doctor of Historical Sciences, Professor, Leading Researcher, Institute of History of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine


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