Oleksander Barvinsky

Oleksander Barvinsky (Ukrainian: Олександр Барвiнський) (June 8, 1847 – December 25, 1926) was an important western Ukrainian cultural figure and politician, a founder of the Christian Social Party in western Ukraine. He also was a member of the Austrian parliament, chaired the Shevchenko Scientific Society and held the post of secretary of education and religious affairs of the West Ukrainian National Republic. It was during his chairmanship that the Shevchenko Scientific Society was turned into a well established academy of sciences.

Oleksander Barvinsky
Олександр Барвінський
O Barvinskyj1.jpg
Oleksander Barvinsky
Secretary of Education of West Ukraine
In office
November 9, 1918 – January 4, 1919
Prime MinisterKost Levytsky
Preceded bypost created
Succeeded byAhenor Artymovych
Chairman of Shevchenko Scientific Society
In office
Preceded byJulian Celewycz
Succeeded byMykhailo Hrushevsky
Leader of Catholic Social Movement
In office
Deputy of Imperial Council
In office
In office
Deputy of Galician Diet
In office
Personal details
Oleksandr Hryhorovych Barvinsky

(1847-06-08)8 June 1847
Shliakhnyntsi, Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria
Died25 December 1926(1926-12-25) (aged 79)
Lviv, Poland
Political partyChristian Social Party
Alma materLviv University
OccupationAcademician, politician, pedagogue


Oleksander Barvinsky was born on June 8, 1847 in Shliakhnyntsi, a village near Ternopil in western Ukraine (at the time, part of Austria–Hungary), into the family of a Ukrainian Catholic priest. From 1868 he began teaching at gymnasiums (secondary schools) in western Ukraine until 1888, when he began teaching at Lviv's teacher's seminary and later the theological seminary. Collaborating with Panteleimon Kulish, Barvinsky helped create textbooks for Ukrainian schools, and was largely responsible for the use of Ukrainian orthography and for the term of Ruthenian-Ukrainian within the schools in eastern Galicia.[1]

In 1890, Barvinsky was one of the initiators of the "New Era" policy among Ukrainian political leaders, calling for rapproachment between Poles and Ukrainians. Even after most Ukrainian leaders abandoned this approach by 1894, Barvinsky along with Anatole Vakhnianyn refused to reconsider their positions and together with him formed the political party "Catholic Ruthenian-Social Union". A prominent community organizer and Ukrainophile activist, in 1891 he was elected to the Austrian parliament in Vienna, where he served until 1907. From 1894 until 1904 he was a member of the local Galician Diet. In 1917 Barvinsky became a member of the Austrian upper chamber (House of Lords). When Austria-Hungary fell apart following the First World War, Barvinsky became the minister of education and religious affairs of the West Ukrainian National Republic,[2] retiring from political life after the Poles captured the capital of Lviv.[1]



  • Small Dictionary of History of Ukraine/Chief Editor Valeriy Smoliy. "Lybid". Kiev, 1997.
  • Melnychuk,B. Khanas,V. Oleksandr Hryhorovych Barvinsky/Ternopil Encyclopedic Dictionary. Vol.1. "Zbruch" Ternopil, 2004. ISBN 966-528-197-6
  • Seredyak,А. Outline of Prosvita history. Lviv, 1993. pp. 120–121
  • Kachkan,V. Ukrainian Social Studies in names. Vol.2. Kiev, 1997. pp. 45–54
  • Liberny,О. Oleksandr of the Barvinsky constellation... "Svoboda". 1997
  • Chornovil,І. Political realism of O.Barvinsky "Suchasnist". #1. 1998. pp. 99–105

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