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Kievan Rus' ( orv, , Rusĭ, or , , "Rus' land") or Kyivan Rus', was a loose
federation A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity A polity is an identifiable political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, ...

federation
of
East Slavic East Slavic may refer to: * East Slavic languages, one of three branches of the Slavic languages * East Slavs, a subgroup of Slavic peoples who speak the East Slavic languages See also

* Old East Slavic, a language used during the 10th–15th ...
,
Baltic Baltic may refer to: Geography Northern Europe * Baltic Sea, a sea in Europe * Baltic region, an ambiguous term referring to the general area surrounding the Baltic Sea * Baltic states (also Baltics, Baltic nations, Baltic countries or Baltic rep ...
and
Finnic peoples The Finnic or Fennic peoples, sometimes simply called Finns, are the nations who speak languages traditionally classified in the Finno-Permic languages, Finno-Permic language family, and which originated in the region of the Volga River. The larg ...
in
Eastern Eastern may refer to: Transportation *China Eastern Airlines, a current Chinese airline based in Shanghai *Eastern Air, former name of Zambia Skyways *Eastern Air Lines, a defunct American airline that operated from 1926 to 1991 *Eastern Air Lin ...

Eastern
and
Northern Europe Northern Europe is the northern region of Europe. Narrower definitions may describe Northern Europe as being roughly north of the southern coast of the Baltic Sea, which is about 54th parallel north, 54°N, or may be based on other geographic ...
from the late 9th to the mid-13th century,John Channon & Robert Hudson, ''Penguin Historical Atlas of Russia'' (Penguin, 1995), p.16.Kievan Rus
Encyclopædia Britannica Online.
under the reign of the
Rurik dynasty The Rurik dynasty ( be, Ру́рыкавічы, Rúrykavichy; russian: Рю́риковичи, Ryúrikovichi, ; uk, Рю́риковичі, Riúrykovychi; literally "sons/scions of Rurik"), also known as the Rurikid dynasty or Rurikids, was a no ...
, founded by the
Varangian The Varangians (; non, Væringjar; gkm, Βάραγγοι, ''Várangoi'';Varangian
" Online Etymolog ...
prince
Rurik Rurik of Ladoga (also Ryurik or Rorik; orv, Рюрикъ ''Rjurikŭ'', from Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germanic dialects before their final divergence into separate Nordic la ...

Rurik
. The modern nations of
Belarus , image_map = , map_caption = , capital = Minsk Minsk ( be, Мінск , russian: link=no, Минск) is the capital and the largest city of Belarus, located on the Svislach (Berezina), Svislach and the now subterranean Nyamiha, Niam ...

Belarus
,
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...

Russia
, and
Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also shares borders with to the north; , , and to the west; and to the south; and has a coastli ...

Ukraine
all claim Kievan Rus' as their cultural ancestors, with Belarus and Russia deriving their names from it. The Rurik dynasty would continue to rule parts of Rus' until the 16th century with the
Tsardom of Russia The Tsardom of Russia or Tsardom of Rus' (russian: Русское царство, translit=Russkoye tsarstvo, later changed to: ), also externally referenced as the Tsardom of Muscovy, was the centralized Russian state from the assumption of the ...
. At its greatest extent, in the mid-11th century, it stretched from the
White Sea The White Sea (russian: Белое море, ''Béloye móre''; Karelian language, Karelian and fi, Vienanmeri, lit. Dvina Sea; yrk, Сэрако ямʼ, ''Serako yam'') is a southern inlet of the Barents Sea located on the northwest coast of ...
in the north to the
Black Sea , with the skyline of Batumi Batumi (; ka, ბათუმი ) is the second largest city of Georgia Georgia usually refers to: * Georgia (country) Georgia ( ka, საქართველო; ''Sakartvelo''; ) is a country locat ...

Black Sea
in the south and from the
headwaters The headwaters of a river A river is a natural flowing watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, sea, lake or another river. In some cases, a river flows into the ground and becomes dry at the end of its course witho ...
of the
Vistula The Vistula (; pl, Wisła, , german: Weichsel) is the longest river in Poland Poland, officially the Republic of Poland, is a country located in Central Europe. It is divided into 16 Voivodeships of Poland, administrative provinc ...

Vistula
in the west to the
Taman Peninsula The Taman Peninsula (russian: Тама́нский полуо́стров, ''Tamanskiy poluostrov'') is a peninsula in the present-day Krasnodar Krai of Russia, which borders the Sea of Azov to the North, the Strait of Kerch to the West and the ...
in the east, uniting the majority of East Slavic tribes. According to '' Rus' Primary Chronicle'', the first ruler to start uniting East Slavic lands into what has become known as Kievan Rus' was (879–912). He extended his control from
Novgorod Veliky Novgorod ( rus, links=yes, Великий Новгород, p=vʲɪˈlʲikʲɪj ˈnovɡərət), also known as just Novgorod (russian: Новгород, lit=newtown, links=yes), is the largest city and administrative center of Novgorod O ...
south along the
Dnieper } The Dnieper or Dnipro () is one of the major list of rivers of Europe, rivers of Europe, rising in the Valdai Hills near Smolensk, Russia, before flowing through Belarus and Ukraine to the Black Sea. It is the longest river of Ukraine and ...

Dnieper
river valley to protect trade from
Khazar The Khazars; he, כוזרים, Kuzarim; la, Gazari, or ; zh, 突厥曷薩 ; 突厥可薩部 ''Tūjué Kěsà bù'' () were a semi-nomad A nomad ( frm, nomade "people without fixed habitation") is a member of a community without fi ...
incursions from the east, and moved his capital to the more strategic
Kiev Kyiv ( uk, Київ) or Kiev . is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also share ...

Kiev
.
Sviatoslav I Sviatoslav I Igorevich (Old East Slavic : ''Cyrillic letters in this article are romanized Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every asp ...
(died 972) achieved the first major expansion of Kievan Rus' territorial control, fighting a war of conquest against the Khazars.
Vladimir the Great Vladimir Sviatoslavich ( orv, Володимѣръ Свѧтославичь, ''Volodiměrъ Svętoslavičь''; ''Uladzimir'', russian: Владимир ''Vladimir'', uk, Володимир ''Volodymyr''. See Vladimir (name) Vladimir (russi ...
(980–1015) with his own baptism and, by decree, extended it to all inhabitants of Kiev and beyond. Kievan Rus' reached its greatest extent under
Yaroslav the Wise Yaroslav the Wise or Yaroslav I; russian: Ярослав Мудрый, ; uk, Ярослав Мудрий; non, Jarizleifr Valdamarsson; la, Iaroslaus Sapiens. (c. 978 – 20 February 1054) was the Grand Prince of Kiev from 1019 until his death. ...

Yaroslav the Wise
(1019–1054); his sons assembled and issued its first written legal code, the
Russkaya Pravda ''Russkaya Pravda'' or Rus' Justice (Rus' Justice or Rus' Truth; orv, Правда роусьскаꙗ, ''Pravda Rusĭskaya'' (13th century, 1280), Правда Руськая, ''Pravda Rus'kaya'' (second half of the 15th century); russian: Ру ...
("Rus' Justice"), shortly after his death.Bushkovitch, Paul. ''A Concise History of Russia''. Cambridge University Press. 2011. The state began to decline during the late 11th century and the 12th century, disintegrating into various rival regional powers. It was further weakened by economic factors, such as the collapse of Rus' commercial ties to the
Byzantine Empire The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire, or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn ...

Byzantine Empire
due to the decline of Constantinople and the accompanying diminution of
trade routes A trade route is a Logistics, logistical network identified as a series of pathways and stoppages used for the commercial transport of cargo. The term can also be used to refer to trade over bodies of water. Allowing Good (economics and accounting ...
through its territory. The state finally fell to the
Mongol invasion The Mongol invasions and conquests took place during the 13th and 14th centuries, creating history's largest contiguous empire - The Mongol Empire, which by 1300 covered large parts of Eurasia. Historians regard the Mongol devastation as one of ...
of the 1240s.


Name

During its existence, Kievan Rus' was known as the "land of the
Rus Rus or RUS may refer to: People and places * Rus (surname)Rus is a Romanian language, Romanian and Slovene language, Slovene surname that may refer to: Romanians *Daniela L. Rus, roboticist, Romanian-born, working in US *Ioan Rus Romanian polit ...
" ( orv, ро́усьскаѧ землѧ, from the ethnonym ;
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
: ;
Arabic Arabic (, ' or , ' or ) is a Semitic language The Semitic languages are a branch of the Afroasiatic language family originating in the Middle East The Middle East is a list of transcontinental countries, transcontinental region ...

Arabic
: '), in Greek as , in Old French as , in Latin as or (with local German spelling variants ''Ruscia'' and ''Ruzzia''), and from the 12th century also or . ''Назаренко А. В.'
Глава I
/
Древняя Русь на международных путях: Междисциплинарные очерки культурных, торговых, политических связей IX—XII вв.
— М.: Языки русской культуры, 2001. — c. 40, 42—45, 49—50. — .
Various
etymologies Etymology ()The New Oxford Dictionary of English ''The'' () is a grammatical article Article often refers to: * Article (grammar) An article is any member of a class of dedicated words that are used with noun phrases to mark the identif ...
have been proposed, including , the Finnish designation for Sweden or ''Ros'', a tribe from the middle Dnieper valley region. According to the prevalent theory, the name ''Rus'', like the Proto-Finnic name for
Sweden Sweden ( sv, Sverige ), officially the Kingdom of Sweden ( sv, links=no, Konungariket Sverige ), is a Nordic country The Nordic countries, or the Nordics, are a geographical and cultural region In geography, regions are areas that ...

Sweden
(''*Ruotsi''), is derived from an
Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germanic dialects before their final divergence into separate Nordic languages. Old Norse was spoken by inhabitants of Scandinavia Scandinavia; : ''Skades ...
term for "the men who row" (''rods-'') as rowing was the main method of navigating the rivers of Eastern Europe, and that it could be linked to the Swedish coastal area of
Roslagen 300px, Folklands in Svitjod (Uppland and Gästrikland) The coastline has changed considerably in the last millennium due to post-glacial rebound. Originally there was a sea bay coming in from the north all the way into Uppsala. Roslagen is th ...

Roslagen
(''Rus-law'') or ''Roden'', as it was known in earlier times.Stefan Brink, 'Who were the Vikings?', in
The Viking World
', ed. by Stefan Brink and Neil Price (Abingdon: Routledge, 2008), pp. 4-10 (pp. 6–7).
The name ''Rus'' would then have the same origin as the
Finnish Finnish may refer to: * Something or someone from, or related to Finland * Finnish culture * Finnish people or Finns, the primary ethnic group in Finland * Finnish language, the national language of the Finnish people * Finnish cuisine See also

...
and
Estonian Estonian may refer to: *Something of, from, or related to Estonia, a country in the Baltic region in northern Europe *Estonians, people from Estonia, or of Estonian descent *Estonian language *Estonian cuisine *Estonian culture See also

* * La ...
names for Sweden: ''Ruotsi'' and ''Rootsi''."Russ, adj. and n." OED Online, Oxford University Press, June 2018, www.oed.com/view/Entry/169069. Accessed 12 January 2021. In the
Norse Norse is demonym for Norsemen, a medieval North Germanic ethnolinguistic group ancestral to modern Scandinavians, defined as speakers of Old Norse from about the 9th to the 13th centuries. Norse may also refer to: Culture and religion * Norse m ...
sources, the
sagas Sagas are prose stories and histories, composed in Iceland and to a lesser extent elsewhere in Scandinavia. The most famous saga-genre is the ''Íslendingasögur'' (sagas concerning Icelanders), which feature Viking voyages, migration to Iceland, ...
, the principality is called Garðariki, and the peoples, according to Snorre Sturlason, are called
Suiones The Swedes ( sv, svear; Old Norse: ''svíar'' (probably from the PIE reflexive pronoun, reflexive pronominal root *wikt:Reconstruction:Proto-Indo-European/swé, s(w)e, "one's own ribesmen/kinsmen;Bandle, Oskar. 2002. The Nordic languages: an i ...
, the confederation of Great Sviþjoð (Þjoð means people in Norse; cf. etymology of
Sweden Sweden ( sv, Sverige ), officially the Kingdom of Sweden ( sv, links=no, Konungariket Sverige ), is a Nordic country The Nordic countries, or the Nordics, are a geographical and cultural region In geography, regions are areas that ...

Sweden
) were made up of the peoples along the
Dniepr } The Dnieper or Dnipro () is one of the major rivers of Europe A river is a natural flowing watercourse A watercourse is the channel Channel, channels, channeling, etc., may refer to: Geography * Channel (geography), in physi ...
called
Tanais Tanais ( el, Τάναϊς ''Tánaïs''; russian: Танаис) was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), ...
that separated Asia and Europe (called Enea by Snorri Sturluson), all the way to the Baltics and Scandinavia. The term ''Kievan Rus'' (russian: Ки́евская Русь, translit=Kiyevskaya Rus) was coined in the 19th century in
Russian historiography This list of Russian historians includes the famous historian ( 484– 425 BC) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC and one of the earliest historians whose work survives. A historian is a person who studies and writes about the ...
to refer to the period when the centre was in Kiev. In English, the term was introduced in the early 20th century, when it was found in the 1913 English translation of
Vasily Klyuchevsky Vasily Osipovich Klyuchevsky (russian: Василий Осипович Ключевский; in Voskresnskoye Village, Penza Governorate, Russia – , Moscow) was a leading Russian Empire, Russian Imperial historian of the late imperial period. A ...

Vasily Klyuchevsky
's ''A History of Russia'', to distinguish the early polity from successor states, which were also named ''Rus''. Later, the Russian term was rendered into be, Кіеўская Русь, translit=Kiyewskaya Rus’, translit-std=bgn/pcgn or , rue, Київска Русь, translit=Kyïvska Rus′, translit-std=ala-lc, and uk, Ки́ївська Русь, translit=Kyivska Rus, translit-std=ungegn, respectively.


History


Origin

Prior to the emergence of Kievan Rus' in the 9th century AD, the lands between the
Baltic Sea The Baltic Sea is an arm of the Atlantic Ocean, enclosed by Denmark Denmark ( da, Danmark, ) is a Nordic country The Nordic countries, or the Nordics, are a geographical and cultural region In geography, regions are areas that a ...

Baltic Sea
and
Black Sea , with the skyline of Batumi Batumi (; ka, ბათუმი ) is the second largest city of Georgia Georgia usually refers to: * Georgia (country) Georgia ( ka, საქართველო; ''Sakartvelo''; ) is a country locat ...

Black Sea
were primarily populated by eastern Slavic tribes. In the northern region around
Novgorod Veliky Novgorod ( rus, links=yes, Великий Новгород, p=vʲɪˈlʲikʲɪj ˈnovɡərət), also known as just Novgorod (russian: Новгород, lit=newtown, links=yes), is the largest city and administrative center of Novgorod O ...
were the
Ilmen Slavs The Novgorod Slavs, Slovenes or Ilmen Slavs (russian: Ильменские слове́не, ''Il'menskiye slovene'') were the northernmost tribe The term tribe is used in many different contexts to refer to a category of human social group. T ...
and neighboring
Krivichi The Krivichs (Kryvichs) ( be, крывічы, kryvičý, ; rus, кри́вичи, p=krʲɪvʲɪˈtɕi) were a tribal union of Early East Slavs between the 6th and the 12th centuries. It is suggested that originally the Krivichi were native to the ...
, who occupied territories surrounding the headwaters of the West Dvina,
Dnieper } The Dnieper or Dnipro () is one of the major list of rivers of Europe, rivers of Europe, rising in the Valdai Hills near Smolensk, Russia, before flowing through Belarus and Ukraine to the Black Sea. It is the longest river of Ukraine and ...
, and
Volga River The Volga (; russian: Во́лга, a=Ru-Волга.ogg, p=ˈvoɫɡə) is the longest river in Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention ra ...
s. To their north, in the and
Karelia Karelia (Karelian language, Karelian and fi, Karjala, ; rus, Каре́лия, links=y, r=Karélija, p=kɐˈrʲelʲɪjə, historically ''Korjela''; sv, Karelen), the land of the Karelians, Karelian people, is an area in Northern Europe of ...

Karelia
regions, were the Finnic
Chud Chud or Chude ( orv, чудь, in Finnic languages The Finnic (''Fennic'') or more precisely Balto-Finnic (''Balto-Fennic''; Baltic Finnic, ''Baltic Fennic'') languages, are a branch of the Uralic language family spoken around the Baltic Sea b ...
tribe. In the south, in the area around Kiev, were the Poliane, a group of
Slavicized Slavicisation or Slavicization, is the acculturation or adoption of something non-Slavic into Slavic culture or terms or (to a greater degree) the acculturation of something Slavic into a non-Slavic culture, cuisine, region, or nation. The proce ...
tribes with
Iranian Iranian may refer to: * Iran Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia, and officially the Islamic Republic of Iran, is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subreg ...
origins, the Drevliane to the west of the Dnieper, and the Severiane to the east. To their north and east were the
Vyatichi The Vyatichs or more properly Vyatichi or Viatichi (russian: вя́тичи) were a native tribe of Early East Slavs who inhabited the Oka River, Oka river, Moskva River, Moskva river and Don (river), Don river. The Vyatichi had for a long time n ...
, and to their south was forested land settled by Slav farmers, giving way to steppelands populated by nomadic herdsmen. Controversy persists over whether the Rus' were
Varangians The Varangians (; non, Væringjar; gkm, Βάραγγοι, ''Várangoi'';Varangian
" Online Etymol ...
or Slavs, with the current scholarly consensus holding that they were an ancestrally Norse people that quickly assimilated into Slavic culture. "The controversies over the nature of the Rus and the origins of the Russian state have bedevilled Viking studies, and indeed Russian history, for well over a century. It is historically certain that the Rus were Swedes. The evidence is incontrovertible, and that a debate still lingers at some levels of historical writing is clear evidence of the holding power of received notions. The debate over this issue – futile, embittered, tendentious, doctrinaire – served to obscure the most serious and genuine historical problem which remains: the assimilation of these Viking Rus into the Slavic people among whom they lived. The principal historical question is not whether the Rus were Scandinavians or Slavs, but, rather, how quickly these Scandinavian Rus became absorbed into Slavic life and culture." This uncertainty is due largely to a paucity of contemporary sources. Attempts to address this question instead rely on archaeological evidence, the accounts of foreign observers, and legends and literature from centuries later. To some extent the controversy is related to the foundation myths of modern states in the region. While Varangians were Norse traders and
Vikings Vikings—"pirate", non, víkingr is the modern name given to seafaring people primarily from Scandinavia Scandinavia; : ''Skadesi-suolu''/''Skađsuâl''. ( ) is a in , with strong historical, cultural, and linguistic ties. In ...

Vikings
, some Russian and Ukrainian nationalist historians argue that the Rus' were themselves Slavs (see The Anti-Normanist debate). Normanist theories focus on the earliest written source for the
East Slavs The East Slavs are the most populous subgroup of the Slavs. They speak the East Slavic languages, and formed the majority of the population of the medieval state Kievan Rus', which all three independent East Slavic states (Belarus, Russia, and U ...
, the ''
Primary Chronicle The ''Tale of Bygone Years'' ( orv, Повѣсть времѧньныхъ лѣтъ, ''Pověstĭ vremęnĭnyxŭ lětŭ''), known in English-language historiography as the ''Primary Chronicle'' or ''Old Russian Primary letopis'' or, after the auth ...
'', which was produced in the 12th century. Nationalist accounts on the other hand have suggested that the Rus' were present before the arrival of the Varangians, noting that only a handful of Scandinavian words can be found in modern Russian and that Scandinavian names in the early chronicles were soon replaced by Slavic names.David R. Stone,
A Military History of Russia: From Ivan the Terrible to the war in Chechnya''
(2006), pp. 2–3.
Nevertheless, a fact is the close connection of Rus' with the Norse, which is confirmed by both extensive Scandinavian settlement in Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine as well as Slavic influences in the Swedish language. Considering the linguistic arguments mounted by nationalist scholars, if the proto-Rus' were Norse, they must have quickly become nativized, adopting Slavic languages and other cultural practices.
Ahmad ibn Fadlan Aḥmad ibn Faḍlān ibn al-ʿAbbās ibn Rāšid ibn Ḥammād ( ar, أحمد بن فضلان بن العباس بن راشد بن حماد, 921–22), commonly known as Ahmad ibn Fadlan, was a 10th-century Arabs, Arab Muslims, Muslim traveler, ...
, an Arab traveler during the 10th century, provided one of the earliest written descriptions of the Rus': "They are as tall as a
date palm ''Phoenix dactylifera'', commonly known as date or date palm, is a flowering plant species in the palm family, Arecaceae The Arecaceae is a family In , family (from la, familia) is a of people related either by (by recognized birt ...

date palm
, blond and ruddy, so that they do not need to wear a tunic nor a cloak; rather the men among them wear garments that only cover half of his body and leaves one of his hands free."
Liutprand of CremonaLiutprand may refer to: *Liutprand, King of the Lombards ruled from 712 to 744 *Duke Liutprand of Benevento (died after 759) *Bishop Liutprand of Cremona, (c. 922–972) historian {{hndis, Liutprand ...
, who was twice an envoy to the
Byzantine The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire, or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire in its eastern provinces during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, when its capital city was Constantinople. It survi ...

Byzantine
court (949 and 968), identifies the "Russi" with the
Norse Norse is demonym for Norsemen, a medieval North Germanic ethnolinguistic group ancestral to modern Scandinavians, defined as speakers of Old Norse from about the 9th to the 13th centuries. Norse may also refer to: Culture and religion * Norse m ...
("the Russi, whom we call Norsemen by another name") but explains the name as a Greek term referring to their physical traits ("A certain people made up of a part of the Norse, whom the Greeks call '' ..' the Russi on account of their physical features, we designate as Norsemen because of the location of their origin.").
Leo the DeaconLeo the Deacon ( el, Λέων ο Διάκονος) (born c. 950) was a Byzantine The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire, or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire in its eastern provinces during Late An ...
, a 10th-century Byzantine historian and chronicler, refers to the Rus' as "
Scythians The Scythians (from grc, Σκύθης , ) or Scyths, also known as Saka and Sakae ( ; egy, 𓋴𓎝𓎡𓈉 The ancient Egyptian Hill-country or "Foreign land" hieroglyph (𓈉) is a member of the sky, earth, and water hieroglyphs. A ...
" and notes that they tended to adopt Greek rituals and customs. But 'Scythians' in Greek parlance is used predominantly as a generic term for
nomad A nomad ( frm, nomade "people without fixed habitation") is a member of a community without fixed habitation who regularly moves to and from the same areas. Such groups include hunter-gatherer A hunter-gatherer is a human Humans (''Homo ...

nomad
s.


Invitation of the Varangians

According to the ''Primary Chronicle'', the territories of the East Slavs in the 9th century were divided between the Varangians and the Khazars. The Varangians are first mentioned imposing tribute from Slavic and Finnic tribes in 859. In 862, the Finnic and Slavic tribes in the area of
Novgorod Veliky Novgorod ( rus, links=yes, Великий Новгород, p=vʲɪˈlʲikʲɪj ˈnovɡərət), also known as just Novgorod (russian: Новгород, lit=newtown, links=yes), is the largest city and administrative center of Novgorod O ...

Novgorod
rebelled against the Varangians, driving them "back beyond the sea and, refusing them further tribute, set out to govern themselves." The tribes had no laws, however, and soon began to make war with one another, prompting them to invite the Varangians back to rule them and bring peace to the region: The three brothers—
Rurik Rurik of Ladoga (also Ryurik or Rorik; orv, Рюрикъ ''Rjurikŭ'', from Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germanic dialects before their final divergence into separate Nordic la ...

Rurik
, Sineus, and Truvor—established themselves in Novgorod,
Beloozero Belozersk (russian: Белозе́рск) is a town A town is a human settlement. Towns are generally larger than villages and smaller than city, cities, though the criteria to distinguish between them vary considerably in different p ...
, and
Izborsk Izborsk (russian: Избо́рск; et, Irboska; vro, Irbosk, Irbuska, label= Seto) is a rural locality (village A village is a clustered human settlement or community, larger than a hamlet (place), hamlet but smaller than a town (alt ...

Izborsk
, respectively. Two of the brothers died, and Rurik became the sole ruler of the territory and progenitor of the
Rurik Dynasty The Rurik dynasty ( be, Ру́рыкавічы, Rúrykavichy; russian: Рю́риковичи, Ryúrikovichi, ; uk, Рю́риковичі, Riúrykovychi; literally "sons/scions of Rurik"), also known as the Rurikid dynasty or Rurikids, was a no ...
. A short time later, two of Rurik's men,
Askold and DirAskold (''Haskuldr'' or ''Hǫskuldr'' in Old East Norse and ''Hǫskuldr'' in Old West Norse) was a prince of Kiev (Kyiv Kyiv ( uk, Київ) or Kiev . is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine. It is in north-central Ukraine along t ...
, asked him for permission to go to Tsargrad (
Constantinople la, Constantinopolis ota, قسطنطينيه , alternate_name = Byzantion (earlier Greek name), Nova Roma ("New Rome"), Miklagard/Miklagarth (Old Norse Old Norse, Old Nordic, or Old Scandinavian is a stage of development of North Germa ...

Constantinople
). On their way south, they discovered "a small city on a hill," Kiev, captured it and the surrounding country from the Khazars, populated the region with more Varangians, and "established their dominion over the country of the Polyanians."Janet Martin
"The First East Slavic State"
''A Companion to Russian History'' (Abbott Gleason, ed., 2009), p. 37
Primary Chronicle
, p.8.
The Chronicle reports that Askold and Dir continued to Constantinople with a navy to attack the city in 863–66, catching the Byzantines by surprise and ravaging the surrounding area, though other accounts date the attack in 860. Patriarch Photius vividly describes the "universal" devastation of the suburbs and nearby islands, and another account further details the destruction and slaughter of the invasion. The Rus' turned back before attacking the city itself, due either to a storm dispersing their boats, the return of the Emperor, or in a later account, due to a miracle after a ceremonial appeal by the Patriarch and the Emperor to the Virgin. The attack was the first encounter between the Rus' and Byzantines and led the Patriarch to send missionaries north to engage and attempt to convert the Rus' and the Slavs.Majeska (2009)
p.52
Dimitri Obolensky, ''Byzantium and the Slavs'' (1994)
p.245


Foundation of the Kievan state

Rurik led the Rus' until his death in about 879, bequeathing his kingdom to his kinsman, , as regent for his young son, Igor. In 880–82, Oleg led a military force south along the
Dnieper river } The Dnieper or Dnipro () is one of the major rivers of Europe 400px, Main European drainage divides (red lines) separating catchments (green regions) This page lists the principal rivers of Europe Europe is a continent A co ...
, capturing
Smolensk Smolensk ( rus, Смоленск, p=smɐˈlʲensk, a=smolensk_ru.ogg) is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The ...

Smolensk
and
Lyubech Liubech ( uk, Любеч, russian: Любеч, pl, Lubecz) is an urban-type settlement Urban-type settlement (russian: посёлок городско́го ти́па, translit=posyolok gorodskogo tipa, abbreviated: russian: п.г.т., translit=p ...
before reaching Kiev, where he deposed and killed Askold and Dir, proclaimed himself prince, and declared Kiev the " mother of Rus' cities." Oleg set about consolidating his power over the surrounding region and the riverways north to Novgorod, imposing tribute on the East Slav tribes. In 883, he conquered the
Drevlians The Drevlians ( uk, Древляни, Drevliany, russian: Древля́не, Drevlyane) were a tribe The term tribe is used in many different contexts to refer to a category of human social group. The predominant usage of the term is in the d ...
, imposing a
fur Fur is a thick growth of hair Hair is a protein filament In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular bi ...

fur
tribute on them. By 885 he had subjugated the Poliane, Severiane, Vyatichi, and
Radimichs The Radimichs (also Radimichi) ( be, Радзiмiчы, russian: Радимичи, uk, Радимичі and pl, Radymicze) were an East Slavic tribe of the last several centuries of the 1st millennium, which inhabited upper east parts of the Dni ...
, forbidding them to pay further tribute to the Khazars. Oleg continued to develop and expand a network of Rus' forts in Slav lands, begun by Rurik in the north. The new Kievan state prospered due to its abundant supply of
fur Fur is a thick growth of hair Hair is a protein filament In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular bi ...

fur
s,
beeswax Beeswax (''cera alba'') is a natural wax Waxes are a diverse class of organic compound In , organic compounds are generally any s that contain - . Due to carbon's ability to (form chains with other carbon s), millions of organic c ...

beeswax
,
honey Honey is a sweet, viscous food substance made by honey bees Honey is a sweet, viscous food substance made by honey bees and some other Bee, bees. Bees produce honey from the sugary secretions of plants (floral nectar) or from secretion ...

honey
, and
slaves Slavery and enslavement are both the state and the condition of being a slave, who is someone forbidden to quit their service for an enslaver, and who is treated by the enslaver as their property. Slavery typically involves the enslaved per ...
for export,Walter Moss, A History of Russia: To 1917 (2005)
p. 37
and because it controlled three main trade routes of
Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical reg ...

Eastern Europe
. In the north, Novgorod served as a commercial link between the Baltic Sea and the
Volga trade route In the Middle Ages In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and presentation and the interpretation of past events and affairs of the people of Europe si ...
to the lands of the
Volga Bulgars Volga Bulgaria ( tt, Идел Болгар, chv, Атӑлҫи Пӑлхар) or Volga–Kama Bulghar, was a historic Bulgar state that existed between the 7th and 13th centuries around the confluence of the Volga The Volga (; rus, Во́лг ...
, the Khazars, and across the
Caspian Sea The Caspian Sea (also known as Mazandaran Sea, Hyrcanian Ocean, or Khazar Sea), tk, Hazar deňzi, az, Xəzər Dənizi, russian: Каспийское море, script=Latn, fa, دریای مازندران، دریای خزر, script=Latn, tly, ...

Caspian Sea
as far as
Baghdad Baghdad (; ar, بَغْدَاد ) is the capital of Iraq Iraq ( ar, الْعِرَاق, translit=al-ʿIrāq; ku, عێراق, translit=Êraq), officially the Republic of Iraq ( ar, جُمْهُورِيَّة ٱلْعِرَاق '; ku, ...

Baghdad
, providing access to markets and products from Central Asia and the Middle East.Martin (2009)
p. 47
Trade from the Baltic also moved south on a network of rivers and short portages along the Dnieper known as the " route from the Varangians to the Greeks," continuing to the Black Sea and on to Constantinople. Kiev was a central outpost along the Dnieper route and a hub with the east–west overland trade route between the Khazars and the Germanic lands of Central Europe. These commercial connections enriched Rus' merchants and princes, funding military forces and the construction of churches, palaces, fortifications, and further towns. Demand for luxury goods fostered production of expensive jewelry and religious wares, allowing their export, and an advanced credit and money-lending system may have also been in place.


Early foreign relations


Volatile steppe politics

The rapid expansion of the Rus' to the south led to conflict and volatile relationships with the Khazars and other neighbors on the Pontic steppe.Magocsi (2010)
p. 62
Magocsi (2010)
p.66
The Khazars Pax Khazarica, dominated the Black Sea steppe during the 8th century, trading and frequently Khazar#Khazars and Byzantium, allying with the Byzantine Empire against Persians and Arabs. In the late 8th century, the collapse of the Göktürks, Göktürk Khaganate led the Magyars and the Pechenegs, Ugrians and Turkic peoples from Central Asia, to migrate west into the steppe region, leading to military conflict, disruption of trade, and instability within the Khazar Khaganate. The Rus' and Slavs had earlier allied with the Khazars against Arab raids on the Caucasus, but they increasingly worked against them to secure control of the trade routes. The Byzantine Empire was able to take advantage of the turmoil to expand its political influence and commercial relationships, first with the Khazars and later with the Rus' and other steppe groups. The Byzantines established the Theme (Byzantine district), Theme of Cherson (theme), Cherson, formally known as Klimata, in the Crimea in the 830s to defend against raids by the Rus' and to protect vital grain shipments supplying Constantinople. Cherson also served as a key diplomatic link with the Khazars and others on the steppe, and it became the centre of Black Sea commerce. The Byzantines also helped the Khazars build a fortress at Sarkel on the Don river to protect their northwest frontier against incursions by the Turkic migrants and the Rus', and to control caravan trade routes and the portage between the Don and Volga rivers. The expansion of the Rus' put further military and economic pressure on the Khazars, depriving them of territory, tributaries, and trade. In around 890, Oleg waged an indecisive war in the lands of the lower Dniester river, Dniester and Dnieper rivers with the Tivertsi and the Ulichs, who were likely acting as vassals of the Magyars, blocking Rus' access to the Black Sea. In 894, the Magyars and Pechenegs were drawn into Byzantine-Bulgarian Wars#Simeon I's Imperial ambitions, the wars between the Byzantines and the First Bulgarian Empire, Bulgarian Empire. The Byzantines arranged for the Magyars to attack Bulgarian territory from the north, and Bulgaria in turn persuaded the Pechenegs to attack the Magyars from their rear. Boxed in, the Magyars were forced to migrate further west across the Carpathian Mountains into the Hungarian plain, depriving the Khazars of an important ally and a buffer from the Rus'. The migration of the Magyars allowed Rus' access to the Black Sea, and they soon launched excursions into Khazar territory along the sea coast, up the Don river, and into the lower Volga region. The Rus' were Caspian expeditions of the Rus', raiding and plundering into the Caspian Sea region from 864, with the first large-scale expedition in 913, when they extensively raided Baku, Gilan, Mazandaran and penetrated into the Caucasus. As the 10th century progressed, the Khazars were no longer able to command tribute from the Volga Bulgars, and their relationship with the Byzantines deteriorated, as Byzantium increasingly allied with the Pechenegs against them. The Pechenegs were thus secure to raid the lands of the Khazars from their base between the Volga and Don River (Russia), Don rivers, allowing them to expand to the west. Rus' relations with the Pechenegs were complex, as the groups alternately formed alliances with and against one another. The Pechenegs were nomads roaming the steppe raising livestock which they traded with the Rus' for agricultural goods and other products.Martin (2003)
p. 17
The lucrative Rus' trade with the Byzantine Empire had to pass through Pecheneg-controlled territory, so the need for generally peaceful relations was essential. Nevertheless, while the Primary Chronicle reports the Pechenegs entering Rus' territory in 915 and then making peace, they were waging war with one another again in 920.Magocsi (2010)
p. 67
Pechenegs are reported assisting the Rus' in later campaigns against the Byzantines, yet allied with the Byzantines against the Rus' at other times.


Rus'–Byzantine relations

After the Rus' attack on Constantinople in 860, the Byzantine Patriarch Photius sent missionaries north to convert the Rus' and the Slavs. Prince Rastislav of Moravia had requested the Emperor to provide teachers to interpret the holy scriptures, so in 863 the brothers Saints Cyril and Methodius, Cyril and Methodius were sent as missionaries, due to their knowledge of the Slavonic language. The Slavs had no written language, so the brothers devised the Glagolitic alphabet, later replaced by Cyrillic (developed in the First Bulgarian Empire) and standardized the language of the Slavs, later known as Old Church Slavonic. They translated portions of the Bible and drafted the first Slavic civil code and other documents, and the language and texts spread throughout Slavic territories, including Kievan Rus'. The mission of Cyril and Methodius served both evangelical and diplomatic purposes, spreading Byzantine cultural influence in support of imperial foreign policy. In 867 the Patriarch announced that the Rus' had accepted a bishop, and in 874 he speaks of an "Archbishop of the Rus'." Relations between the Rus' and Byzantines became more complex after Oleg took control over Kiev, reflecting commercial, cultural, and military concerns. The wealth and income of the Rus' depended heavily upon trade with Byzantium. Constantine VII, Constantine Porphyrogenitus described the annual course of the princes of Kiev, collecting tribute from client tribes, assembling the product into a flotilla of hundreds of boats, conducting them down the Dnieper to the Black Sea, and sailing to the estuary of the Dniester, the Danube delta, and on to Constantinople. On their return trip they would carry silk fabrics, spices, wine, and fruit. The importance of this trade relationship led to military action when disputes arose. The Primary Chronicle reports that the Rus' Rus'–Byzantine War (907), attacked Constantinople again in 907, probably to secure trade access. The Chronicle glorifies the military prowess and shrewdness of Oleg, an account imbued with legendary detail. Byzantine sources do not mention the attack, but a pair of treaties in Rus'–Byzantine Treaty (907), 907 and Rus'–Byzantine Treaty (911), 911 set forth a trade agreement with the Rus', the terms suggesting pressure on the Byzantines, who granted the Rus' quarters and supplies for their merchants and tax-free trading privileges in Constantinople. The Chronicle provides a mythic tale of Oleg's death. A sorcerer prophesies that the death of the Grand Prince would be associated with a certain horse. Oleg has the horse sequestered, and it later dies. Oleg goes to visit the horse and stands over the carcass, gloating that he had outlived the threat, when a snake strikes him from among the bones, and he soon becomes ill and dies. The Chronicle reports that Igor of Kiev, Prince Igor succeeded Oleg in 913, and after some brief conflicts with the Drevlians and the Pechenegs, a period of peace ensued for over twenty years. In 941, Igor led another Rus'–Byzantine War (941), major Rus' attack on Constantinople, probably over trading rights again. A navy of 10,000 vessels, including Pecheneg allies, landed on the Bithynian coast and devastated the Asiatic shore of the Bosphorus.Ostrogorski, p.277 The attack was well-timed, perhaps due to intelligence, as the Byzantine fleet was occupied with the Arabs in the Mediterranean, and the bulk of its army was stationed in the east. The Rus' burned towns, churches, and monasteries, butchering the people and amassing booty. The emperor arranged for a small group of retired ships to be outfitted with Greek fire throwers and sent them out to meet the Rus', luring them into surrounding the contingent before unleashing the Greek fire.Logan, p.193.
Liutprand of CremonaLiutprand may refer to: *Liutprand, King of the Lombards ruled from 712 to 744 *Duke Liutprand of Benevento (died after 759) *Bishop Liutprand of Cremona, (c. 922–972) historian {{hndis, Liutprand ...
wrote that "the Rus', seeing the flames, jumped overboard, preferring water to fire. Some sank, weighed down by the weight of their breastplates and helmets; others caught fire." Those captured were beheaded. The ploy dispelled the Rus' fleet, but their attacks continued into the hinterland as far as Nicomedia, with many atrocities reported as victims were crucified and set up for use as targets. At last a Byzantine army arrived from the Balkans to drive the Rus' back, and a naval contingent reportedly destroyed much of the Rus' fleet on its return voyage (possibly an exaggeration since the Rus' soon mounted another attack). The outcome indicates increased military might by Byzantium since 911, suggesting a shift in the balance of power. Igor returned to Kiev keen for revenge. He assembled a large force of warriors from among neighboring Slavs and Pecheneg allies, and sent for reinforcements of Varangians from “beyond the sea.” In 944 the Rus' force advanced again on the Greeks, by land and sea, and a Byzantine force from Cherson responded. The Emperor sent gifts and offered tribute in lieu of war, and the Rus' accepted. Envoys were sent between the Rus', the Byzantines, and the Bulgarians in 945, and a Rus'–Byzantine Treaty (945), peace treaty was completed. The agreement again focused on trade, but this time with terms less favorable to the Rus', including stringent regulations on the conduct of Rus' merchants in Cherson and Constantinople and specific punishments for violations of the law. The Byzantines may have been motivated to enter the treaty out of concern of a prolonged alliance of the Rus', Pechenegs, and Bulgarians against them, though the more favorable terms further suggest a shift in power.


Sviatoslav

Following the death of Igor, Grand Prince of Kiev, Grand Prince Igor in 945, his wife Olga of Kiev, Olga ruled as regent in Kiev until their son Sviatoslav I of Kiev, Sviatoslav reached maturity (c. 963). His decade-long reign over Rus' was marked by rapid expansion through the conquest of the Khazars of the Pontic–Caspian steppe, Pontic steppe and the Sviatoslav's invasion of Bulgaria, invasion of the Balkans. By the end of his short life, Sviatoslav carved out for himself the largest state in Europe, eventually moving his capital from Kiev to Pereyaslavets on the Danube in 969. In contrast with his mother's conversion to History of Christianity#High Middle Ages (800–1299), Christianity, Sviatoslav, like his druzhina, remained a staunch paganism, pagan. Due to his abrupt death in an ambush in 972, Sviatoslav's conquests, for the most part, were not consolidated into a functioning empire, while his failure to establish a stable succession led to a fratricide, fratricidal feud among his sons, which resulted in two of his three sons being killed.


Reign of Vladimir and Christianisation

It is not clearly documented when the title of the Grand Duke was first introduced, but the importance of the Kiev principality was recognized after the death of Sviatoslav I in 972 and the ensuing struggle between Vladimir I of Kiev, Vladimir the Great and Yaropolk I of Kiev, Yaropolk I. The region of Kiev dominated the state of Kievan Rus' for the next two centuries. The grand prince or grand duke ( be, вялікі князь, translit=vyaliki knyaz’, translit-std=bgn/pcgn or , russian: великий князь, translit=velikiy kniaz, rue, великый князь, translit=velykŷĭ kni͡az′, translit-std=ala-lc, uk, великий князь, translit=velykyi kniaz, translit-std=ungegn) of Kiev controlled the lands around the city, and his formally subordinate relatives ruled the other cities and paid him tribute. The zenith of the state's power came during the reigns of Vladimir the Great (980–1015) and Prince Yaroslav I the Wise (1019–1054). Both rulers continued the steady expansion of Kievan Rus' that had begun under Oleg. Vladimir had been prince of Novgorod when his father Sviatoslav I died in 972. He was forced to flee to Scandinavia in 976 after his half-brother Yaropolk had murdered his other brother Oleg of Drelinia, Oleg and taken control of Rus. In Scandinavia, with the help of his relative Earl Håkon Sigurdsson, ruler of Norway, Vladimir assembled a Viking army and reconquered Novgorod and Kiev from Yaropolk. As Prince of Kiev, Vladimir's most notable achievement was the Christianization of Kievan Rus', a process that began in 988. The
Primary Chronicle The ''Tale of Bygone Years'' ( orv, Повѣсть времѧньныхъ лѣтъ, ''Pověstĭ vremęnĭnyxŭ lětŭ''), known in English-language historiography as the ''Primary Chronicle'' or ''Old Russian Primary letopis'' or, after the auth ...
states that when Vladimir had decided to accept a new faith instead of the traditional Slavic mythology, idol-worship (paganism) of the Slavs, he sent out some of his most valued advisors and warriors as emissaries to different parts of Europe. They visited the Christians of the Latin Rite, the Jews, and the Muslims before finally arriving in Constantinople. They rejected Islam because, among other things, it prohibited the consumption of alcohol, and Judaism because the god of the Jews had permitted his chosen people to be deprived of their country. They found the ceremonies in the Roman church to be dull. But at Constantinople, they were so astounded by the beauty of the cathedral of Hagia Sophia and the liturgical service held there that they made up their minds there and then about the faith they would like to follow. Upon their arrival home, they convinced Vladimir that the faith of the Byzantine Rite was the best choice of all, upon which Vladimir made a journey to Constantinople and arranged to marry Anna Porphyrogenita, Princess Anna, the sister of Byzantine emperor Basil II. Vladimir's choice of Eastern Christianity may also have reflected his close personal ties with Constantinople, which dominated the Black Sea and hence trade on Kiev's most vital commercial route, the Dnieper River. Adherence to the Eastern Church had long-range political, cultural, and religious consequences. The church had a liturgy written in Cyrillic and a corpus of translations from Greek that had been produced for the Slavic peoples. This literature facilitated the conversion to Christianity of the Eastern Slavs and introduced them to rudimentary Greek philosophy, science, and historiography without the necessity of learning Ancient Greek, Greek (there were some merchants who did business with Greeks and likely had an understanding of contemporary business Greek). In contrast, educated people in medieval Western Europe, Western and Central Europe learned Latin (language), Latin. Enjoying independence from the Roman authority and free from tenets of Latin learning, the East Slavs developed their own literature and fine arts, quite distinct from those of other Eastern Orthodox countries. (See Old East Slavic language and Architecture of Kievan Rus for details). Following the East–West Schism, Great Schism of 1054, the Rus' church maintained communion with both Rome and Constantinople for some time, but along with most of the Eastern churches it eventually split to follow the Eastern Orthodox. That being said, unlike other parts of the Greek world, Kievan Rus' did not have a strong hostility to the Western world.


Golden age

Yaroslav, known as "the Wise", struggled for power with his brothers. A son of Vladimir I of Kiev, Vladimir the Great, he was vice-regent of Novgorod at the time of his father's death in 1015. Subsequently, his eldest surviving brother, Svyatopolk the Accursed, killed three of his other brothers and seized power in Kiev. Yaroslav, with the active support of the Novgorodians and the help of Viking mercenaries, defeated Svyatopolk and became the grand prince of Kiev in 1019. Although he first established his rule over Kiev in 1019, he did not have uncontested rule of all of Kievan Rus' until 1036. Like Vladimir, Yaroslav was eager to improve relations with the rest of Europe, especially the Byzantine Empire. Yaroslav's granddaughter, Eupraxia of Kiev, Eupraxia the daughter of his son Vsevolod I, Prince of Kiev, was married to Henry IV, Holy Roman Emperor. Yaroslav also arranged marriages for his sister and three daughters to the kings of Poland, France, Hungary and Norway. Yaroslav promulgated the first East Slavic law code, ''
Russkaya Pravda ''Russkaya Pravda'' or Rus' Justice (Rus' Justice or Rus' Truth; orv, Правда роусьскаꙗ, ''Pravda Rusĭskaya'' (13th century, 1280), Правда Руськая, ''Pravda Rus'kaya'' (second half of the 15th century); russian: Ру ...
''; built Saint Sophia Cathedral in Kiev and Saint Sophia Cathedral in Novgorod; patronized local clergy and monasticism; and is said to have founded a school system. Yaroslav's sons developed the great Kiev Pechersk Lavra (monastery), which functioned in Kievan Rus' as an ecclesiastical academy. In the centuries that followed the state's foundation, Rurik Dynasty, Rurik's descendants shared power over Kievan Rus'. Princely succession moved from elder to younger brother and from uncle to nephew, as well as from father to son. Junior members of the dynasty usually began their official careers as rulers of a minor district, progressed to more lucrative principalities, and then competed for the coveted throne of Kiev.


Fragmentation and decline

The gradual disintegration of the Kievan Rus' began in the 11th century, after the death of
Yaroslav the Wise Yaroslav the Wise or Yaroslav I; russian: Ярослав Мудрый, ; uk, Ярослав Мудрий; non, Jarizleifr Valdamarsson; la, Iaroslaus Sapiens. (c. 978 – 20 February 1054) was the Grand Prince of Kiev from 1019 until his death. ...

Yaroslav the Wise
. The position of the Grand Prince of Kiev was weakened by the growing influence of regional clans. An unconventional power succession system was established (rota system) whereby power was transferred to the eldest member of the ruling dynasty rather than from father to son, i.e. in most cases to the eldest brother of the ruler, fomenting constant hatred and rivalry within the royal family. Familicide was frequently deployed to obtain power and can be traced particularly during the time of the Yaroslavichi (sons of Yaroslav), when the established system was skipped in the establishment of Vladimir II Monomakh as the Grand Prince of Kiev, in turn creating major squabbles between Oleg I of Chernigov, Olegovichi from Chernihiv, Monomakhs from Pereyaslav, Izyaslav I of Kiev, Izyaslavichi from Principality of Turov, Turov/Volhynia, and Polotsk Principality, Polotsk Princes. The most prominent struggle for power was the conflict that erupted after the death of Yaroslav the Wise. The rival Principality of Polotsk was contesting the power of the Grand Prince by occupying Novgorod, while Rostislav of Tmutarakan, Rostislav Vladimirovich was fighting for the Black Sea port of Tmutarakan belonging to Chernihiv. Three of Yaroslav's sons that first allied together found themselves fighting each other especially after their defeat to the Cuman forces in 1068 at the Battle of the Alta River. At the same time, an uprising took place in Kiev, bringing to power Vseslav of Polotsk who supported the traditional Slavic paganism. The ruling Grand Prince Iziaslav fled to Poland asking for support and in couple of years returned to establish the order. The affairs became even more complicated by the end of the 11th century driving the state into chaos and constant warfare. On the initiative of Vladimir II Monomakh in 1097 the first Council of Liubech, federal council of Kievan Rus' took place near Chernihiv in the city of Liubech with the main intention to find an understanding among the fighting sides. However, even though that did not really stop the fighting, it certainly cooled things off. By 1130, all descendants of Vseslav of Polotsk, Vseslav the Seer had been exiled to the
Byzantine Empire The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire, or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn ...

Byzantine Empire
by Mstislav the Great. The most fierce resistance to the Monomakhs was posed by the Olegovichi when the izgoi Vsevolod II of Kiev, Vsevolod II managed to become the Grand Prince of Kiev. The Volodar of Peremyshl, Rostislavichi who had initially established in Halych lands by 1189 were defeated by the Monomakh-Piast descendant Roman the Great. The decline of Constantinople – a main trading partner of Kievan Rus' – played a significant role in the decline of the Kievan Rus'. The trade route from the Varangians to the Greeks, along which the goods were moving from the Black Sea (mainly Byzantine) through eastern Europe to the Baltic, was a cornerstone of Kievan wealth and prosperity. These trading routes became less important as the Byzantine Empire declined in power and Western Europe created new trade routes to Asia and the Near East. As people relied less on passing through Kievan Rus' territories for trade, the Kievan Rus' economy suffered. The last ruler to maintain a united state was Mstislav the Great. After his death in 1132, the Kievan Rus' fell into recession and a rapid decline, and Mstislav's successor Yaropolk II of Kiev, instead of focusing on the external threat of the Cumans, was embroiled in conflicts with the growing power of the Novgorod Republic. In March 1169, a coalition of native princes led by Andrei Bogolyubsky of Vladimir sacked Kiev. This changed the perception of Kiev and was evidence of the fragmentation of the Kievan Rus'. By the end of the 12th century, the Kievan state fragmented even further, into roughly twelve different principalities. The Crusades brought a shift in European trade routes that accelerated the decline of Kievan Rus'. In 1204, the forces of the Fourth Crusade sacked Constantinople, making the
Dnieper } The Dnieper or Dnipro () is one of the major list of rivers of Europe, rivers of Europe, rising in the Valdai Hills near Smolensk, Russia, before flowing through Belarus and Ukraine to the Black Sea. It is the longest river of Ukraine and ...
trade route marginal. At the same time, the Livonian Brothers of the Sword (of the Northern Crusades) were conquering the Baltic region, Baltic region and threatening the Lands of Novgorod. Concurrently with it, the Ruthenian Federation of Kievan Rus' started to disintegrate into smaller principalities as the Rurik dynasty grew. The local Orthodox Christianity of Kievan Rus', while struggling to establish itself in the predominantly pagan state and losing its main base in Constantinople, was on the brink of extinction. Some of the main regional centres that developed later were Novgorod, Chernigov, Halych, Kiev, Ryazan, Vladimir-upon-Klyazma, Volodimer-Volyn and Polotsk.


Novgorod Republic

In the north, the Republic of Novgorod prospered because it controlled trade routes from the River Volga to the Baltic Sea. As Kievan Rus' declined, Novgorod became more independent. A local oligarchy ruled Novgorod; major government decisions were made by a town assembly, which also elected a prince as the city's military leader. In 1136, Novgorod revolted against Kiev, and became independent. Now an independent city state, city republic, and referred to as "Lord Novgorod the Great" it would spread its "mercantile interest" to the west and the north; to the Baltic Sea and the low-populated forest regions respectively. In 1169, Novgorod acquired its own Archbishop of Novgorod, archbishop, named Ilya (Archbishop of Novgorod), Ilya, a sign of further increased importance and political independence. Novgorod enjoyed a wide degree of autonomy although being closely associated with the Kievan Rus.


Northeast

In the northeast, Slavs from the Kievan region colonized the territory that later would become the Grand Duchy of Moscow by subjugating and merging with the Finnic tribes already occupying the area. The city of Rostov, the oldest centre of the northeast, was supplanted first by Suzdal and then by the city of Vladimir, Russia, Vladimir, which become the capital of Vladimir-Suzdal'. The combined principality of Vladimir-Suzdal asserted itself as a major power in Kievan Rus' in the late 12th century. In 1169, Prince Andrey Bogolyubskiy of Vladimir-Suzdal sacked the city of Kiev and took over the title of the grand prince to claim primacy in Rus'. Prince Andrey then installed his younger brother, who ruled briefly in Kiev while Andrey continued to rule his realm from Suzdal. In 1299, in the wake of the Mongol invasion of Rus, Mongol invasion, the metropolitan bishop, metropolitan moved from Kiev to the city of Vladimir and Vladimir-Suzdal.


Southwest

To the southwest, the principality of Halych had developed trade relations with its Poland, Polish, Hungary, Hungarian and Lithuanian neighbours and emerged as the local successor to Kievan Rus'. In 1199, Roman the Great, Prince Roman Mstislavych united the two previously separate principalities of Halych and Volhynia, Volyn. In 1202 he conquered Kiev, and assumed the title of Knyaz of Kievan Rus', which was held by the rulers of Vladimir-Suzdal since 1169. His son, Daniel of Galicia, Prince Daniel (r. 1238–1264) looked for support from the West. He accepted a crown as a "Rex Rusiae" ("King of Rus") from the Roman papacy, apparently doing so without breaking with Constantinople. In 1370, the patriarch of the Eastern Orthodox Church in Constantinople granted the King of Poland a metropolitan for his Ruthenian subjects. Lithuanian rulers also requested and received a metropolitan for Novagrudok shortly afterwards. Cyprian, Metropolitan of Moscow, Cyprian, a candidate pushed by the Lithuanian rulers, became Metropolitan of Kiev in 1375 and metropolitan of Moscow in 1382; this way the church in the territory of former Kievan Rus was reunited for some time. In 1439, Kiev became the seat of a separate "Metropolitan of Kiev, Halych and all Rus'" for all Greek Orthodox Christians under Polish-Lithuanian rule. However, a long and unsuccessful struggle against the Mongols combined with internal opposition to the prince and foreign intervention weakened Galicia-Volhynia. With the end of the Mstislavich branch of the Dynasty of Rurik, Rurikids in the mid-14th century, Galicia-Volhynia ceased to exist; Poland conquered Halych; Lithuania took Volhynia, including Kiev, conquered by Gediminas in 1321 Battle on the Irpen' River, ending the rule of Rurikids in the city. Lithuanian rulers then assumed the title over Ruthenia.


Final disintegration

The state finally disintegrated under the pressure of the Mongol invasion of Rus', fragmenting it into successor principalities who paid tribute to the Golden Horde (the so-called Tatar Yoke). In the late 15th century, the Grand Duchy of Moscow, Muscovite Grand Dukes began taking over former Kievan territories and proclaimed themselves the sole legal successors of the Kievan principality according to the protocols of the medieval theory of translatio imperii. On the western periphery, Kievan Rus' was succeeded by the Principality of Galicia-Volhynia. Later, as these territories, now part of modern central
Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also shares borders with to the north; , , and to the west; and to the south; and has a coastli ...

Ukraine
and
Belarus , image_map = , map_caption = , capital = Minsk Minsk ( be, Мінск , russian: link=no, Минск) is the capital and the largest city of Belarus, located on the Svislach (Berezina), Svislach and the now subterranean Nyamiha, Niam ...

Belarus
, fell to the Gediminids, the powerful, largely Ruthenized Grand Duchy of Lithuania drew heavily on Rus' cultural and legal traditions. From 1398 until the Union of Lublin in 1569 its full name was the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Ruthenia and Samogitia. Due to the fact of the economic and cultural core of Rus' being located on the territory of modern Ukraine, Ukrainian historians and scholars consider Kievan Rus' to be a founding Ukrainian state. On the north-eastern periphery of Kievan Rus', traditions were adapted in the Vladimir-Suzdal Principality that gradually gravitated towards Moscow. To the very north, the Novgorod Republic, Novgorod and Pskov Republic, Pskov Feudal Republics were less autocratic than Vladimir-Suzdal-Moscow until they were absorbed by the Grand Duchy of Moscow. Russian historians consider Kievan Rus' the first period of Russian history.


Economy

During the Kievan era, trade and transport depended largely on networks of rivers and portages. The peoples of Rus' experienced a period of great economic expansion, opening trade routes with the
Vikings Vikings—"pirate", non, víkingr is the modern name given to seafaring people primarily from Scandinavia Scandinavia; : ''Skadesi-suolu''/''Skađsuâl''. ( ) is a in , with strong historical, cultural, and linguistic ties. In ...

Vikings
to the north and west and with the Byzantine Greeks to the south and west; traders also began to travel south and east, eventually making contact with Persia and the peoples of Central Asia.


Society

Due to the expansion of trade and its geographical proximity, Kiev became the most important trade centre and chief among the communes; therefore the leader of Kiev gained political "control" over the surrounding areas. This princedom emerged from a coalition of traditional patriarchic family communes banded together in an effort to increase the applicable workforce and expand the productivity of the land. This union developed the first major cities in the Rus' and was the first notable form of self-government. As these communes became larger, the emphasis was taken off the family holdings and placed on the territory that surrounded. This shift in ideology became known as the verv'. In the 11th and the 12th centuries, the princes and their retinues, which were a mixture of Slavic peoples, Slavic and Scandinavian elites, dominated the society of Kievan Rus'. Leading soldiers and officials received income and land from the princes in return for their political and military services. Kievan society lacked the class institutions and autonomous towns that were typical of Western European feudalism. Nevertheless, urban merchants, artisans and labourers sometimes exercised political influence through a city assembly, the ''veche'' (council), which included all the adult males in the population. In some cases, the veche either made agreements with their rulers or expelled them and invited others to take their place. At the bottom of society was a stratum of slaves. More important was a class of tribute-paying peasants, who owed labour duty to the princes. The widespread personal serfdom characteristic of Western Europe did not exist in Kievan Rus'. The change in political structure led to the inevitable development of the peasant class or smerds. The smerdy were free un-landed people that found work by labouring for wages on the manors that began to develop around 1031 as the verv' began to dominate socio-political structure. The smerdy were initially given equality in the Kievian law code; they were theoretically equal to the prince; so they enjoyed as much freedom as can be expected of manual labourers. However, in the 13th century, they slowly began to lose their rights and became less equal in the eyes of the law.


Historical assessment

Kievan Rus', although sparsely populated compared to Western Europe, was not only the largest contemporary European state in terms of area but also culturally advanced. Literacy in Kiev, Novgorod and other large cities was high. As birch bark documents attest, they exchanged love letters and prepared cheat sheets for schools. Novgorod had a sewage system and wood paving not often found in other cities at the time. The
Russkaya Pravda ''Russkaya Pravda'' or Rus' Justice (Rus' Justice or Rus' Truth; orv, Правда роусьскаꙗ, ''Pravda Rusĭskaya'' (13th century, 1280), Правда Руськая, ''Pravda Rus'kaya'' (second half of the 15th century); russian: Ру ...
confined punishments to fines and generally did not use capital punishment. Certain rights were accorded to women, such as property and inheritance rights.Janet Martin, ''Medieval Russia, 980–1584'', (Cambridge, 1995), p. 72 The economic development of Kievan Rus may be translated into demographic statistics. Around 1200, Kiev had a population of 50,000, Novgorod and Chernigov both had around 30,000.Janet Martin, ''Medieval Russia, 980–1584'', (Cambridge, 1995), p. 61 Constantinople had a population of about 400,000 around 1180.J. Phillips, ''The Fourth Crusade and the Sack of Constantinople'' page 144 The Soviet scholar Mikhail Tikhomirov calculated that Kievan Rus' on the eve of the Mongol invasion had around 300 urban centres. Kievan Rus' also played an important genealogical role in European politics.
Yaroslav the Wise Yaroslav the Wise or Yaroslav I; russian: Ярослав Мудрый, ; uk, Ярослав Мудрий; non, Jarizleifr Valdamarsson; la, Iaroslaus Sapiens. (c. 978 – 20 February 1054) was the Grand Prince of Kiev from 1019 until his death. ...

Yaroslav the Wise
, whose stepmother belonged to the Macedonian dynasty, which ruled the Byzantine empire from 867 to 1056, married the only legitimate daughter of the king who Christianized Sweden. His daughters became queens of Hungary, France and Norway, his sons married the daughters of a King of Poland, Polish king and a Byzantine emperor (not to mention a niece of the Pope), while his granddaughters were a German Empress and (according to one theory) the queen of Scotland. A grandson married the only daughter of the last Anglo-Saxon king of England. Thus the Rurikids were a well-connected royal family of the time.


Foreign relations


Turco-Mongols

From the 9th century, the Pecheneg nomads began an uneasy relationship with Kievan Rus'. For over two centuries they launched sporadic raids into the lands of Rus′, which sometimes escalated into full-scale wars (such as the 920 war on the Pechenegs by Igor of Kiev reported in the
Primary Chronicle The ''Tale of Bygone Years'' ( orv, Повѣсть времѧньныхъ лѣтъ, ''Pověstĭ vremęnĭnyxŭ lětŭ''), known in English-language historiography as the ''Primary Chronicle'' or ''Old Russian Primary letopis'' or, after the auth ...
), but there were also temporary military alliances (e.g., the 943 Byzantine campaign by Igor). In 968, the Pechenegs Siege of Kiev (968), attacked and besieged the city of Kiev. Some speculation exists that the Pechenegs drove off the Tivertsi and the Ulichs to the regions of the upper Dniester river in Bukovina. The Byzantine Empire was known to support the Pechenegs in their military campaigns against the Eastern Slavic states. Boniak was a Cuman Khan (title), khan who led a series of invasions on Kievan Rus′. In 1096, Boniak attacked Kiev, plundered the Kiev Monastery of the Caves, and burned down the prince's palace in Berestovo. He was defeated in 1107 by Vladimir Monomakh, Oleg, Sviatopolk and other Rus′ princes. The Mongol Empire invaded Kievan Rus' in the 13th century, destroying numerous cities, including Ryazan, Kolomna, Moscow, Vladimir, Russia, Vladimir and Kiev. Giovanni de Plano Carpini, the Pope's envoy to the Mongol Great Khan, traveled through Kiev in February 1246 and wrote:
They [the Mongols] attacked Rus, where they made great havoc, destroying cities and fortresses and slaughtering men; and they laid siege to Kiev, the capital of Rus; after they had besieged the city for a long time, they took it and put the inhabitants to death. When we were journeying through that land we came across countless skulls and bones of dead men lying about on the ground. Kiev had been a very large and thickly populated town, but now it has been reduced almost to nothing, for there are at the present time scarce two hundred houses there and the inhabitants are kept in complete slavery.


Byzantine Empire

Byzantium quickly became the main Trade route from the Varangians to the Greeks, trading and cultural partner for Kiev, but relations were not always friendly. The most serious conflict between the two powers was the Sviatoslav I of Kiev#Campaigns in the Balkans, war of 968–971 in Bulgaria, but several Rus' raiding expeditions against the Byzantine cities of the Black Sea coast and Constantinople itself are also recorded. Although most were repulsed, they were concluded by Rus'–Byzantine War (970–971), trade treaties that were generally favourable to the Rus'. Rus'-Byzantine relations became closer following the marriage of the ''porphyrogenita'' Anna Porphyrogeneta, Anna to
Vladimir the Great Vladimir Sviatoslavich ( orv, Володимѣръ Свѧтославичь, ''Volodiměrъ Svętoslavičь''; ''Uladzimir'', russian: Владимир ''Vladimir'', uk, Володимир ''Volodymyr''. See Vladimir (name) Vladimir (russi ...
, and the subsequent Christianization of Kievan Rus', Christianization of the Rus': Byzantine priests, architects and artists were invited to work on numerous cathedrals and churches around Rus', expanding Byzantine cultural influence even further. Numerous Rus' served in the Byzantine army as mercenaries, most notably as the famous Varangian Guard.


Military campaigns

* Caspian expeditions of the Rus' (864–1041) * Rus'–Byzantine War (disambiguation), Rus'–Byzantine Wars (830–1043) * Boleslaw I's intervention in the Kievan succession crisis, 1018, 1018 Polish intervention


Administrative divisions

; 11th century *Novgorod Land 862–1478 the allied territory of Kievan Rus'; from 1136 the Novgorod Republic *Vladimir-Suzdal#Rostov-Suzdal, Principality of Rostov-Suzdal Rostov Principality until 1125; became Vladimir-Suzdal Principality in 1155 *Principality of Polotsk 9th century-14th century (separatist territory, partial suzerainty under Kievan Rus') ** Principality of Minsk *Principality of Smolensk from 1054 *Principality of Pereyaslavl *Principality of Volhynia *Principality of Kiev from 1132–1399 **Kingdom of Galicia–Volhynia, Principality of Galicia **Principality of Turov and Pinsk *Principality of Chernigov **Murom-Ryazan Principality until 1078 **Principality of Novgorod-Seversk *Tmutarakan, City of Tmutarakan from 988 until some time in the 12th century *Sarkel, Belaya Vezha from 965 until some time in the 12th century *Southern dependencies Oleshky, New Galich, Peresechen' *Drevlians, Drevlian territories annexed to Rus' by Oleg ?-884; 912–946 (vassal of Rus' from 914, Drevlians Uprising in 945)


Principal cities

*Belgorod Kievsky, capital of Rus' under Rurik Rostislavich *Chernihiv, capital along with Kiev from 1024–1036 (joint rule between Yaroslav and Mstislav) *Halych *
Kiev Kyiv ( uk, Київ) or Kiev . is the capital and most populous city of Ukraine Ukraine ( uk, Україна, Ukraïna, ) is a country in . It is the in Europe after , which it borders to the east and north-east. Ukraine also share ...

Kiev
*Minsk, centre of Principality of Minsk *Murom *Pereyaslavets, capital of Rus' from 969–971 (in current day Romania) *Polotsk *Rostov, Rostov Veliky *Ryazan *
Smolensk Smolensk ( rus, Смоленск, p=smɐˈlʲensk, a=smolensk_ru.ogg) is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The ...

Smolensk
*Staraya Ladoga *Suzdal *Tmutarakan *Veliky Novgorod *Vladimir, Russia, Vladimir *Vyshhorod, Vyshgorod, princes' residence and royal library (at Mezhyhirya Monastery, Mezhyhirya)


Religion

In 988, the Christian Church in Rus' territorially fell under the jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople after it was officially adopted as the state religion. According to several chronicles after that date the predominant cult of Slavic paganism was persecuted. The exact date of creation of the Kiev Metropolis is uncertain, as well as who was the first leader of the church. Predominantly it is considered that the first head was Michael I of Kiev (metropolitan), Michael I of Kiev, however some sources also claim Leontiy who is often placed after Michael or Anastas Chersonesos, became the first bishop of the Church of the Tithes. The first metropolitan to be confirmed by historical sources is Theopemp, who was appointed by Patriarch Alexius of Constantinople in 1038. Before 1015 there were five dioceses: Kiev, Chernihiv, Bilhorod, Volodymyr, Novgorod, and soon thereafter Bila Tserkva, Yuriy-upon-Ros. The Kiev Metropolitan sent his own delegation to the Council of Bari in 1098. After the sacking of Kiev in 1169, part of the Kiev metropolis started to move to Vladimir, Russia, Vladimir-upon-Klyazma, concluding the move sometime after 1240 when Kiev was taken by Batu Khan. Metropolitan Maxim was the first metropolitan who chose Vladimir-upon-Klyazma as his official residence in 1299. As a result, in 1303, Lev I of Galicia petitioned Patriarch Athanasius I of Constantinople for the creation of a new Halych metropolis; however, it only existed until 1347. The Church of the Tithes was chosen as the first Cathedral Temple. In 1037, the cathedral was transferred to the newly built Saint Sophia Cathedral in Kiev. Upon the transferring of the metropolitan seat in 1299, the Dormition Cathedral, Vladimir was chosen as the new cathedral. By the mid 13th century, the dioceses of Kiev Metropolis (988) were as follows: Kiev (988), Pereyaslav, Chernihiv (991), Volodymyr-Volynsky (992), Turov (1005), Polotsk (1104), Novgorod (~990s), Smolensk (1137), Murom (1198), Peremyshl (1120), Halych (1134), Vladimir-upon-Klyazma (1215), Rostov (991), Bilhorod, Yuriy (1032), Chełm (1235), Tver (1271). There also were dioceses in Carpathian Ruthenia, Zakarpattia and Tmutarakan. In 1261 the Sarai-Batu diocese was established.


Collection of maps

File:CHODZKO(1861) CARTE DES PAYS SLAVO-POLONAIS AUX VIII ET IX SIECLE.jpg, Map of the 8-9th centuries by Leonard Chodzko (1861) File:Polska Rosja Skandynawia w IX w.jpg, Map of the 9th century by Antoine Philippe Houze (1844) File:LEROY-BEAULIEU(1893) p1.097 RUSSIA IN THE 9th CENTURY.jpg, Map of the 9th century by F. S. Weller (1893) File:Europe 1000.jpg, Map of Rus in Europe in 1000 (1911) File:Shepherd-c-066-067.jpg, Map of 1097 (1911) File:Europe-1139.jpg, Map of 1139 by Joachim Lelewel (1865) File:Центры Руси по Идриси.jpg, Fragment of the 1154 Tabula Rogeriana by Muhammad al-Idrisi


See also

* Template:History of Belarus * Template:History of Russia * Template:History of Ukraine * De Administrando Imperio * Kievan Rus' Park * Old Russian Chronicles * Slavic studies * Symbols of the Rurikids


Explanatory notes


References


Citations


General sources

* *
Russia


Further reading

* David Christian (historian), Christian, David. ''A History of Russia, Mongolia and Central Asia''. Blackwell, 1999. * Franklin, Simon and Shepard, Jonathon, ''The Emergence of Rus, 750–1200''. (Longman History of Russia, general editor Harold Shukman.) Longman, London, 1996. * Fennell, John, ''The Crisis of Medieval Russia, 1200–1304''. (Longman History of Russia, general editor Harold Shukman.) Longman, London, 1983. * Jones, Gwyn. ''A History of the Vikings''. 2nd ed. London: Oxford Univ. Press, 1984. * Martin, Janet, ''Medieval Russia 980–1584''. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1993. * * Pritsak, Omeljan. ''The Origin of Rus. Cambridge Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1991. * Stang, Håkon. ''The Naming of Russia''. Meddelelser, Nr. 77. Oslo: University of Oslo Slavisk-baltisk Avelding, 1996. * Alexander F. Tsvirkun E-learning course. History of Ukraine. Journal Auditorium, Kiev, 2010. * Velychenko, Stephen, ''National history as cultural process: a survey of the interpretations of Ukraine's past in Polish, Russian, and Ukrainian historical writing from the earliest times to 1914''. Edmonton, 1992. * Velychenko, Stephen, "Nationalizing and Denationalizing the Past. Ukraine and Russia in Comparative Context", Ab Imperio 1 (2007). * Velychenko, Stephen "New wine old bottle. Ukrainian history Muscovite-Russian Imperial myths and the Cambridge-History of Russia," http://historians.in.ua/index.php/dyskusiya/853-stephen-velychenko-new-wine-old-bottle-ukrainian-history-muscovite-russian-imperial-myths-and-the-cambridge-history-of-russia


External links


Historical map of Kiev Rus' from 980. to 1054.
*
Ancient Rus: trade and craftsChronology of Kievan Rus' 859-1240.
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