Vsevolod I

views updated


(10301093), grand prince of Kiev.

Although Vsevolod was grand prince of Kiev, son of the eminent Yaroslav Vladimirovich the Wise, and father of the famous Vladimir Monomakh, his own career was not outstanding. He was allegedly Yaroslav's favorite son and married to a relative of Byzantine emperor Constantine IX Monomachus.

Before his death in 1054, Yaroslav bequeathed southern Pereyaslavl to Vsevolod along with territories in the upper Volga, including Rostov, Suzdal, and Beloozero. Yaroslav also designated him heir to Kiev, along with his elder brothers Izyaslav and Svyatoslav. For some twenty years the three acted as a triumvirate, asserting their authority over all the other princes, including their brothers Vyacheslav of Smolensk and Igor of Vladimir in Volyn. As prince of Pereyaslavl, Vsevolod had to defend his domain against attacks from the nomads, especially the Polovtsy (Cumans). In 1068 after the latter defeated the three brothers, the Kievans forced Izyaslav to flee to the Poles. Vsevolod joined Svyatoslav in persuading the citizens to reinstate Izyaslav in Kiev. In 1072 Vsevolod and his brothers translated the relics of Saints Boris and Gleb into a new church in Vyshgorod and together issued the Law Code of Yaroslav's Sons (Pravda Yaroslavichey ). In 1073, however, they quarreled, and Vsevolod helped Svyatoslav evict Izyaslav from Kiev. After Svyatoslav died in 1076, Vsevolod succeeded him briefly in Kiev until Izyaslav reclaimed the throne. In 1078 Izyaslav was killed in battle, and Vsevolod occupied Kiev, where he ruled until his death. His most difficult task was to satisfy his many nephews with territorial allocations. He died on April 13, 1093.

See also: grand prince; izyaslav i; polovtsy; svyatoslav ii; vladimir monomakh; yaroslav vladimirovich


Dimnik, Martin. (1994). The Dynasty of Chernigov, 10541146. Toronto: Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies.

Martin Dimnik