The Emergence of Russia

The Rise of Russia
• Cold
• Surrounded by
water but……no
warm water port
for trading
• Forest
• Grasslands
• Mix of Slavic tribes and Vikings
City of Kiev
• 1st major city
• Present day
• Converted Russian people to Christianity
• Linked emperor with religion
– Influenced by Byzantine Empire
– Common trade routes
Begin Contact with Byzantine
• Orthodox Christianity
• Cyrillic Alphabet
Mongols invade
• Between the Crusades and Mongols, Kievan
Empire declined
• Kiev destroyed in 1240
– Mongols isolated Russians
from Europe
Ivan III
• Russian Prince
• Freed Russians from
Mongol rule in 1480
• Crowned himself “Czar”
• Proclaimed Russia
would be 3rd Rome
• Moved to Moscow
Ivan IV (Ivan the Terrible)
1547-1560 –Good Ivan
1560 1584 Bad Ivan
Execution of
traitors/enemies of
boyers (nobles)
• Secret police
Ivan the Terrible
Ivan IV takes the throne in 1533
- he is 3 years old
His mother rules on his behalf until
her death when Ivan is 5
Ivan the Terrible
Boyars- the landowning nobility in Russia
The boyars fight for control of the young prince and for
- Ivan is terrified
Ivan the Terrible
• Ivan crowns himself Czar of Russia when he is 16 years old
•He is the first Czar of Russia
Czar = Emperor
Ivan the Terrible
“The Good Period”
1547 to 1560
Ivan conquers land in an effort to boost the economy
- wants to have sea routes to Russia
- goes to war with Sweden and Poland
Ivan later loses his new territories
Ivan the Terrible
“Ivan the Terrible”
Ivan turns against Russia
Oprichniki- Ivan’s secret police
-dressed in all black and
rode black horses
- murdered anyone Ivan
suspected of being a
traitor (mostly boyars)
Murdered a possible 5,000 or more subjects
Ivan the Terrible
Ivan’s most terrible act
Ivan murders his only viable heir in a fit of rage in 1581
Leads to a later period, the Time of Troubles, when boyars
fought and there was no powerful czar to control them
Absolute Rulers of Russia
From Ivan IV
Ivan the Terrible
Was Ivan terrible?
• In 1581, Ivan beat his pregnant
daughter-in-law for wearing
immodest clothing, which may
have caused a miscarriage. His
son, also named Ivan , upon
learning of this, engaged in a
heated argument with his father,
which resulted in Ivan striking
his son in the head with his
pointed staff, causing his son's
(accidental) death.
• Killed son
• Accused of poisoning wife
• Younger son took thrown at death and died
without an heir
Romanov Dynasty
• After years of quarrel, boyars chose next
leader, Michael Romanov beginning
Romanov dynasty
• Restored power to government
• Mongol Rule and religious
differences had kept Russia from
interaction with Europe. (missed
Renaissance and Age of
• No Seaport for trade
• Russians looked to Constantinople
for guidance, not Rome
Peter the Great- Absolute
• 6’6
• Prior to becoming czar at
24, Peter went and studied
in the “west” as a
• Decided it was best to
westernize Russia
• Russia needed warm
water port to trade
Westernization by Peter
• Reduced power of great
• Introduced potatoes
• Western clothes and fashions
– Beard Tax
Advanced schools (stressed
• Increased women status
• Newspaper
• Fought Sweden for warm
water port
St. Petersburg
• Peter’s “window to the west”
• New capital of Russia
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