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Giselle Innocent

Giselle Innocent (b. 1600, Prussia – 11/18/1683, Kyiv) was a church figure, theologian scientist, philosopher, historian, Archimandrite of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra, student, professor and Rector of the Kyiv-Mohyla Collegium. He came from a Protestant family in Prussia. He presumably studied at Zamość Academy (now Zamość, Lublin province, Poland), at Königsberg (now Kaliningrad, Russia) and in Rostock (Germany). After moving to Kyiv, he converted to Orthodoxy and accepted monasticism. After studying at the Kyiv-Mohyla Collegium, he was sent by Petro Mohyla to study abroad. Returning to Kyiv, he held the positions of teacher, professor of philosophy at the Kyiv-Mohyla Collegium. Petro Mohyla saw Gisel as his successor and trustee of the Kyiv Collegium. From 1646-1650 he was Rector of the Kyiv-Mohyla Collegium and Rector of the Kyiv Epiphany Bratskyi Monastery. In the years of 1646-1647, for students of the Kyiv-Mohyla Collegium, Gisel wrote a textbook on philosophy, Opus totius philosophiae, which included the basics of dialectics, logic, physics, and metaphysics. In the years 1656-1683, Gisel was elected Archimandrite of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. He actively supported scholars, including Lazar Baranovych, Ioanykiy Galiatovskyi, in their scholarly and literary work, contributing to the publication of works in the printing house of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. He was the editor of “Synopsis”, or the Brief Collection from various chroniclers about the origin of the Slavic-Russian people,” the first scientific textbook of the national history. Gisel took an active part in the ecclesiastical and political life of Ukraine, negotiated with representatives of the Russian Tsar about the status of the Ukrainian church after the conclusion of the Ukrainian-Moscow treaty in 1654. He is buried in the Assumption Cathedral of Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra.

Source: Kyiv-Mohyla Academy Reflected in Names: XVII-XVIII, 2001.