Home Kyiv Rus History Sviatoslav the Brave of Kyiv was of Tauroscythian Royal Descent. Just like...

Sviatoslav the Brave of Kyiv was of Tauroscythian Royal Descent. Just like Anacharsis and Achilles


Byzantine court historian and chronicler Leo the Deacon who is particularly known for his eyewitness description of Sviatoslav I of Kyiv during the latter’s invasion of Bulgaria in 969 and epic battles against Byzantine Imperial forces, made a clear statement about Sviatoslav’s origin: “When night fell, since the moon was nearly full, they [the Rus] came out on the plain and searched for their dead; and they collected them in front of the city wall and kindled numerous fires and burned them, after slaughtering on top of them many captives, both men and women, in accordance with their ancestral custom. And they made sacrificial offerings by drowning suckling infants and chickens in the Istros [Danube], plunging them into the rushing waters of the river. For they are said to be addicted to Hellenic mysteries, and to make sacrifices and libations to the dead in the Hellenic fashion, having been initiated in these things either by their own philosophers, Anacharsis and Zamolxis, or by the comrades of Achilles. For Arrian says in the Periplous that Achilles, son of Peleus, was a Scythian, from a small town called Myrmekion located by Lake Maeotis [Azov Sea]; and that he was banished by the Scythians because of his harsh, cruel, and arrogant temperament, and then went to live in Thessaly. Clear proofs of this story are the style of his clothing with a brooch, and his fighting on foot, and his red hair and grey eyes, and his reckless and passionate and cruel temperament, on account of which Agamemnon reproached and mocked him, speaking as follows: “Always is strife dear to you and wars and battles.” For the Tauroscythians are still accustomed to settle their disputes with killing and bloodshed. That this people is reckless and warlike and mighty, and attacks all the neighboring peoples, is attested by many people, among them the holy Ezekiel, who alludes to them when he says as follows: “Behold, I will bring upon you Gog and Magog, the ruler of the Rosy“.

And here is the famous description Leo the Deacon made of Sviatoslav the Brave:

“Sphendosthlavos arrived sailing along the river in a Scythian light boat, grasping an oar and rowing with his companions as if he were one of them. His appearance was as follows: he was of moderate height, neither taller than average nor particularly short; his eyebrows were thick; he had grey eyes and a snub nose; his beard was clean-shaven, but he let the hair grow abundantly on his upper lip where it was bushy and long; and he shaved his head completely, except for a lock of hair that hung down on one side, as a mark of the nobility of his ancestry; he was solid in the neck, broad in the chest and very well articulated in the rest of his body; he had a rather angry and savage appearance; on one ear was fastened a gold earring, adorned with two pearls with a red gemstone between them; his clothing was white, no different from that of his companions except in cleanliness. After talking briefly with the emperor about their reconciliation, he departed sitting on the helmsman’s seat of the boat. Thus the war of the Romans with the Scythians came to an end.”

The original seal of Sviatoslav the Brave below appears to have a Taurus [bull] image in the center of it.

Who were the Tauroscythians? >

< Gog and Magog of the Bible and Kyiv Rus

More details on the topic can be found in the “Gardariki, Ukraine” e-book.



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