In 1699, on the initiative of Peter the Great, the printing of Russian secular books began in Amsterdam, most of which were textbooks: on history, arithmetic, astronomy, navigation, and foreign languages. The compiler, translator, and publisher of these books was a native of the lands of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Ilya Fedorovich Kopievsky (or Kopievich). For many decades, historians have turned to the biography of this man, but it is still full of gaps and factual errors. The article summarizing the various information about Kopievsky available today (from archival documents to the latest works of historians) contains a detailed reconstruction of his life path. It also includes materials to return to the question of the contribution of this enlightener to the cultural reforms of Peter the Great.