Skip to main content



Polyane is one of the Eastern Slavic tribes that inhabited the Kievan Rus state, as noted in the Russian Primary Chronicle.

According to the Russian Primary Chronicle, the Polyane occupied the middle Dnieper River region: Kiev, the capital of the Rus state, as well as Vyshgorod, Vasilev, and Belgorod. The Polyane received their name (meaning "people of the field") on account of their settlement in the open terrain of the middle Dnieper. With its chernozem soils, the middle Dnieper was ideal for agriculture, the primary economy of the Polyane. Archaeologists believe that the Polyane belonged to a larger group of Slavs, known as Duledy, who migrated east from southeastern Europe sometime during the sixth to seventh centuries. By the eighth to ninth centuries, the Polyane settled both sides of the middle Dnieper and came to form their own ethnic identity. During the ninth century, the middle Dnieper was under the control of the Khazar state, to which the Polyane paid tribute in furs. Kiev itself functioned as the western-most military outpost and a commercial center for the Khazars. During the late ninth century, the Rus prince Oleg (legendary reign 880913) allegedly incorporated the middle Dnieper and the Polyane into the expanding Rus state, although evidence suggests that it was Grand Prince Igor (r. 924945) who brought the two under Rus control around 930. While predominantly Slavic, the Polyane appear to have had Iranian, Turkic, and Finno-Baltic ethnic elements. Evidence for this is found through archaeological and linguistic studies of the Polyane and from Chronicle descriptions of their pre-Christian religious practices.

See also: igor; khazars; kievan rus; oleg; primarychronicle; vikings


Golb, Norman, and Pritsak, Omeljan. (1982). Khazarian Hebrew Document of the Tenth Century. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

The Russian Primary Chronicle. (1973). Tr. and ed. Samuel Hazzard Cross and Olgerd P. Sherbowitz-Wetzor. Cambridge, MA: Mediaeval Academy of America.

Roman K. Kovalev

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Polyane." Encyclopedia of Russian History. . 20 Mar. 2019 <>.

"Polyane." Encyclopedia of Russian History. . (March 20, 2019).

"Polyane." Encyclopedia of Russian History. . Retrieved March 20, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.