The name of the Kazikermen fortress in translation from the Turkish language means “The Maiden’s Beauty”. The fortification was built to control chaikas (wooden boats) of the Zaporozhian Cossacks on the Dnipro River. There was a strategic point to conduct offensive operations on the Cossacks’ lands here. So, the Kazikermen fortress was often attacked by the Zaphorozhian Host. From time to time, the fortress fell into the control from one invader to another. That’s why the history of the fortification is so fascinating. Read the article to learn about the events that happened in the walls of the Kazikermen. Let’s explore all that remains of the old glory.
The history of the Kazikermen fortress
Great wars and battles are a large part of Beryslav’s history. In the third century, the Ostrogoths founded their kingdom here. The capital was called Danparstathir (translated as “the town on the Dnipro”). But the Ostrogoths were destroyed by the Huns in the 5th century. Despite a lack of scientific evidence, some Medieval German epic poems mention Danparstathir. Anyway, the true history faded into legends.
In the 14th century, the area belonged to the Golden Horde. Khan Tokhtamysh founded the Dogan geçit fortress here. However, internal wars were destroying the Golden Horde from the inside, so the Army of Temür Qutlugh completely ruined the fortress in 1399.
At the beginning of the 14th century, Vytautas the Great, the ruler of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, built here a custom-house. It was even called “the Vytautas Tower”. The custom-house didn’t exist for a long time, and passed into the possession of the Crimean Tatars after the death of Vytautas the Great. In 1450, the Kazikermen (or Gazikermen) fortress was established here.
The fortress served to control the access to the Black Sea and to attack the Cossacks’ lands. Naturally, the Zaphorozhian Host got mad and raided the fortification. But all attempts were unsuccessful until 1670. That’s when the Cossacks have laid siege to the fortress and destroyed it partyally. In 1695, the Moscovite and Zaphorozhian Cossacks Armies, led by Boris Sheremetev and Ivan Mazepa, achieved the final victory over the fortification.
As the Treaty of Constantinople stated, there were not allowed to resettle the Kazikermen’s lands. In the 18th century, the fortress served as a shipping point to trade. When the Russo-Turkish War of 1877–1878 came to an end, the Kazikermen’s lands became a part of the Russian Empire. Then, the settlers from Poltava and Chernihiv colonized the area. In 1784, Beryslav city was established on the ruins of the fortress.
The historic chapter of the Kizikerman is drawing to an end. Nowadays, the emblem of Beryslav with the depicted Kizikerman is a reminder of the fortress.
Why the fortress attracts tourists
Only ruins, fragments of walls, and arches remain about the fortress. The memorial sign in honor of capturing the fortress in 1695 was installed here. The Kizikerman fortress is the Turkish-Ukrainian legacy, which will disappear soon. The attempts to restore the landmark were unsuccessful.
Only history will make us feel the former glory of its lands. Just imagine what remarkable events took place here since the third century. They left a mark in the history of the world and Ukraine.
Direction and location
The fortress is located in Beryslav, it’s 47 miles away from Kherson. You can reach the landmark by car. Just follow the P47 route. Turn to the Т0403 route to Beryslav on the ring road. You’ll find the ruins near the public employment services building on Shevchenko, 20 Street. The public transport to Beryslav departs from the Central bus station (Polkovnyka Kedrovskoho, 1 Street) in Kherson.