Project “16 Days of Gratitude”: day 13
Day 13. January Uprising of 1863 and Kyiv. We are getting closer to a significant day, but who knows if we had it without the struggle of the previous generations. Especially important was the January Uprising of 1863, when the people of the former Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth raised against the Russian autocracy. The uprising is a common historical experience of the Polish, Lithuanians, Belarusians, and Ukrainians. The coat of arms of the rebels reflects the aspiration of the three nations – the Polish “eagle”, the Lithuanian “Vytis”, and the Ukrainian “Archangel Michael”. In the toponymy of Kyiv, the memory of the uprising is preserved in the previously mentioned street, named after Konstantin Kalinovsky, and in the museum “Kiev Fortress”, where the 7 rebel leaders were once held and executed. The participants of the uprising became the first political prisoners of “Kyiv Shlisselburg”. Today, the walls of the restored fortress are crowned with the names of 815 rebels. Every year in January, Ukrainian people gather here to honour their memory. The commemoration was especially significant this year. On January 21, 2023, during the commemorative 160-year celebration, Valdemaras Sarapinas, the Ambassador of the Republic of Lithuania to Ukraine, rightly said that “Freedom is the main value, it begins within each of us. Lithuanians have always been with freedom-loving nations. I think you will agree with me: the slogan of the rebels “For our and your freedom” is very relevant today. Today we support our Ukrainian sisters and brothers in their struggle, and – in our struggle as well… We will stay with you until the victory.” Thus, the January Uprising became a precursor to the victory of national aspirations after the First World War, including the revival of the Lithuanian statehood. And we will step by step get closer to this day.
Dr. Ruslana Martseniuk
Source of the photos: from websites “Ukrinform” and the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine.