Stolbovo, Treaty of

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Signed February 27, 1617 in Stolbovo village, this treaty terminated Swedish intervention in Russian affairs after the Time of Troubles. King Gustavus Adolphus recognized Mikhail Romanov as the legitimate tsar of Russia; withdrew the claim of his brother Charles Philip to the Russian throne; and evacuated Novgorod. Russia ceded eastern Karelia and Ingria to Sweden, foregoing direct access to the Baltic Sea, and paid an indemnity of twenty thousand rubles.

King Charles IX had initially intervened in 1609 to provide aid against Polish attempts to place a pretender on the Russian throne. Following the deposition of Vasily Shuisky in 1610, the boyars' council agreed to accept Prince Wladyslaw, son of King Sigismund III, as the next tsar of Russia. Sweden declared war and advanced the candidacy of Charles Philip to the vacant throne. Novgorod was seized in July 1611.

Sweden found it difficult to control northwestern Russia effectively, and its occupation drained away military resources needed to protect Swedish interests in Central Europe. The Stolbovo terms met Sweden's primary objective, ensuring that the Baltic coastand with it, the primary east-west trade routes remained in Swedish hands.

Stolbovo marks the high point of Sweden's eastward expansion beyond the border first confirmed by the 1323 Treaty of Nöteborg. The Swedish government promoted Lutheran missionary activity among the Orthodox inhabitants and encouraged settlement from other Swedish dominions. The Stolbovo settlement was reconfirmed by the 1661 Treaty of Kardis, but overturned by the Treaty of Nystad (1721) that ended the Great Northern War.

Sir John Merrick, an English merchant, helped to negotiate the treaty, testifying to Russia's growing links with Western Europe. The treaty is also connected with a famous relic, the Tikhvin Icon of the Mother of God, a copy of which was brought to Stolbovo for the negotiations.

See also: novgorod the great; romanov, mikhail fyodorovich; shuisky, vasily ivanovich; smolenok war; sweden, relations with; time of troubles


Küng, Enn. (2001). "The Swedish Economic Policy in the Commercial Aspect in Narva in the Second Half of the 17th Century." Ph.D. diss. Tartu University, Estonia.

Nikolas Gvosdev