Kiev Rus


Kievan Rus (862-1242 CE) was a medieval political federation located in modern-day Belarus, Ukraine, and part of Russia (the latter named for the Rus, a Scandinavian people). The name Kievan Rus is a modern-day (19th century CE) designation but has the same meaning as `land of the Rus’, which is how the region was referred to in the Middle Ages. The Rus ruled from the city of Kiev and so `Kievan Rus’ simply meant “the lands of the Rus of Kiev”.

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The Rus are first mentioned in the Annals of Saint-Bertin which records their presence in a diplomatic mission from Constantinople to the court of Louis the Pious (r. 814-840 CE) in 839 CE. The annals claim they were Swedes, and this is possible, but their ethnicity has never been firmly established. (Ancient History Encyclopedia)

Nice article with only couple corrections to be made:

1. “Russia” has nothing to do with the legacy of Kiev Rus. Even if the Rurik dynasty came to Kiev from Novgorod, it was the Swedish dynasty, not “russian”. That is the reason the colors of Ukrainian and Swedish flags are identical.

2.  Kiev Rus had become a Kingdom a bit earlier – Askold was recognized as a King by Constantinople already in 860. 

The faulty logic used by Moscow to claim Kiev Rus’ legacy by the fact that the Rurik dynasty arrived to Kiev from Novgorod is riduculous. By such logic, France can claim the whole British legacy by alluding to William the Conqueror who came to Britain from Normandy.

Besides, the home town of the Rurik dynasty was the Swedish city of Sigtuna, where the future King Vladimir the Great spent 5 years in exhile (in the article it is Norway).

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It is strange that the author mentions St. Sophia Cathedral in Novgorod which Yaroslav the Wise started to build, but does not know that the St. Sophia Cathedral in Kiev had been finished. The Kiev one is on the UNESCO list and symbolizes Kiev as a “New Constantinople.”

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