Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A Cossack chief. Also called hetman.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A title of Cossack and haidamak leaders of various kinds. The term was also used for the leader of a fisherman artel and of a band of robbers or thieves.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A hetman, or chief of the Cossacks.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Same as hetman.

Etymologies

Russian, from South Turkic, leader of an armed band : ata, father + -man, augmentative suff.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Russian атаман. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • "Among his potential allies were worthies like the murderously anti-Bolshevik Cossack atamans Grigory Semeyonov and Ivan Kalmykov, who each controlled a stretch of Far Eastern railroad line."
    Travels in Siberia by Ian Frazier, p 143

    February 11, 2011