Grand Prince of Kiev

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Grand Prince of Kiev
First monarch Volodymyr the Great
Last monarch Michael of Chernigov
Formation unknown
Abolition 1362

Grand Prince of Kiev (sometimes Grand Duke of Kiev) was the title of the Kievan prince and the ruler of Kievan Rus' from the 10th to 13th centuries. In the 13th century, Kiev became an appanage principality first of the Grand Prince of Vladimir and the Golden Horde governors, and later was taken over by the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.

According to some Ukrainian historians (i.e., Kanyhin, Tkachuk), Ptolemy's mention of Metropolis, a Sarmatian town on the Dnieper River, shows the ancient existence of Kiev.[1] The name Dnieper is derived from Sarmatian (Iranian) Dānu apara "the river far away."[citation needed]

Princes of Kiev

Mythological rulers

Name Reign Notes
Kyi 5th or 6th c. mythological founder of Kiev
Oleg 8th c. relation to dynasty is debatable
Bravlin 790s relation to Kiev and dynasty is debatable
Askold and Dir 870s existence debatable

According to Slavophiles, Kyi ruled since 430, one of the dates attributed to the legendary founding of Kiev in 482, although that date relates to Kovin on the Danube in Serbia. Some historians speculate that Kyi was a Slavic prince of eastern Polans in the 6th century. Kyi's legacy along with Shchek's is mentioned in the Book of Veles, the authenticity of which, however, is disputed.

Oleg, an apocryphal Kiev voivode, probably of Danish or Swedish origin, under the overlordship of the Khazar Khaganate.

Bravlin was a Varangian prince or chieftain, who led a Rus' military expedition to devastate the Crimea, from Kerch to Sugdaea, in the last years of the 8th century.

According to some Russian historians (i.e., Gleb S. Lebedev), Dir was a chacanus of Rhos (Rus' Khaganate|Rus' khagan).[2] Thomas Noonan asserts that one of the Rus' "sea-kings", the "High king", adopted the title khagan in the early 9th century.[3] Peter Benjamin Golden maintained that the Rus' became a part of the Khazar federation, and that their ruler was officially accepted as a vassal kagan of the Khazar Khaqan of Itil.[4]

Some western historians (i.e., Kevin Alan Brook) suppose that Kiev was founded by Khazars or Magyars. Kiev is a Turkic place name (Küi = riverbank + ev = settlement).[5] At least during the 8th and 9th centuries Kiev functioned as an outpost of the Khazar empire (a hill-fortress, called Sambat, "high place" in Old Turkic). According to Omeljan Pritsak, Constantine Zuckerman and other scholars, Khazars lost Kiev at the beginning of the 10th century.[6][7]

Rurik Dynasty

The Rurikids were descendants of Rurik (Rørikr), a Varangian pagan chieftain, according to the FamilyTreeDNA Rurikid Dynasty DNA Project, Rurik appears to have belonged to Y-DNA haplogroup N1c1, based on testing of his modern male line descendants.[8] But while genetically related to the later Baltic Finnic peoples, the Rurikids do not possess the DYS390=24 mutation associated with the Finnic languages, theirs remaining the ancestral DYS390=23 (which is also found among West Finns), with the Rurikid haplotype itself (all values considered) more closely associated with [North] Germanic speakers (Varangians).[9]

Portrait Name Branch Born-Died Ruled From Ruled Until Notes
Oleg of Novgorod.jpg Oleg the Seer (Helgi)[10] ?–912 882 912 Relation to Rurik is debatable
Igor the Old.jpg Igor I (Ingvar) ?–945 912 945 son of Rurik I
St Olga by Nesterov in 1892.jpg St.Olga[11] (Helga) ?–969 945 962 (regent-consort)
Svatoslav titularnik.png Sviatoslav I (Sven)[12] 942–972 962 972 son of Igor
Yaropolk murder.jpg Yaropolk I (Jaropolk)[13] 958 (960?)–980 972 980 One of the two Svyatoslav's sons

Grand Princes of Kiev

Rurik Dynasty

Portrait Name Branch Born-Died Ruled From Ruled Until Notes
St. Volodymyr.jpg Vladimir I the Great (Valdamarr) 958–1015 980 1015 One of the two Svyatoslav's sons; in 988 baptized the Rus
Sviatopolk silver srebrenik.jpg Sviatopolk I the Accursed (Sventopluk)[14] 980–1019 1015 1019 origin is debatable
Bilibin yaroslav.jpg Yaroslav I the Wise (Jarizleifr) 978–1054 1019 1054 son of Vladimir the Great, jointly with Mstislav in 1024-36
Minskizjaslav.jpg Iziaslav I of Kiev 1024–1078 1054 1073 son of Yaroslav, first time (in 1068/69 lost state power to Polotsk princes)
Izbornik.jpg Sviatoslav II of Kiev 1027–1076 1073 1076 son of Yaroslav
Minskizjaslav.jpg Iziaslav I of Kiev 1024–1078 1076 1078 second time, in 1075 Pope Gregory VII sent him a crown from Rome
Vsevolod yaroslavich.jpg Vsevolod I of Kiev 1030–1093 1078 1093 son of Yaroslav
Sviatopolk II of Kiev Izyaslavichi 1050–1113 1093 1113 son of Iziaslav I
Vladimir Monomakh.jpg Vladimir II Monomakh Monomakhovychi 1053–1125 1113 1125 son of Vsevolod I
Mstislav I of Kiev (Tsarskiy titulyarnik).jpg Mstislav I the Great (Harald)[citation needed] Monomakhovychi 1076–1132 1125 1132 son of Vladimir II
Yaropolk II of Kiev.jpg Yaropolk II Monomakhovychi 1082–1139 1132 1139 brother of Mstislav I
Viacheslav I Monomakhovychi 1083–1154 1139 1139 brother of Yaropolk II (first time)
Vsevolod Ol'govich.jpg Vsevolod II Svyatoslavichi ?–1146 1139 1146 son of Oleh Svyatoslavich
CvKnyazIgor.jpg Igor II Svyatoslavichi ?–1147 1146 1146 brother of Vsevolod II
Ізяслав II Пантелеймон.jpg Iziaslav II Monomakhovychi 1097–1154 1146 1149 son of Mstislav I (first time)
Dolgorukiy titularnik.jpg Yuri I Dolgorukiy Monomakhovychi 1099–1157 1149 1151 (first time)
Viacheslav I Monomakhovychi 1083–1154 1151 1154 (second time) jointly
Ізяслав II Пантелеймон.jpg Iziaslav II Monomakhovychi 1097–1154 (second time) jointly
Rostislav Mstislavich.jpg Rostislav I Monomakhovychi 1110–1167 1154 1154 brother of Iziaslav II (first time)
Izyaslav III.jpg Iziaslav III Svyatoslavichi ?–1162 1154 1155 (first time)
Dolgorukiy titularnik.jpg Yuri I Dolgorukiy Monomakhovychi 1099–1157 1155 1157 (second time)
Izyaslav III.jpg Iziaslav III Svyatoslavichi ?–1162 1157 1158 (second time)
Rostislav Mstislavich.jpg Rostislav I Monomakhovychi 1110–1167 1158 1167 (second time) jointly with Iziaslav III in 1162
Mstislav Izjaslavich.jpg Mstislav II Izyaslavichi (Monomakh) ?–1172 1167 1169 son of Iziaslav II (first time)
Gleb Yurievichi (Monomakh) ?–1171 1169 1169 son of Yuri Dolgorukiy (first time)
Mstislav Izjaslavich.jpg Mstislav II Izyaslavichi (Monomakh) ?–1172 1170 1170 (second time)
Gleb Yurievichi (Monomakh) ?–1171 1170 1171 (second time)
Vladimir III Monomakhovychi 1132–1173 1171 1171 son of Mstislav I the Great
Michael I Yurievichi (Monomakh) ?–1176 1171 1171 half-brother of Gleb
Roman I Rostislavichi (Monomakh) ?–1180 1171 1173 son of Rostislav I (first time)
Bolshoe Gnezdo.JPG Vsevolod III the Big Nest Yurievichi (Monomakh) 1154–1212 1173 1173 brother of Michael I
Rurik II Rostislavichi (Monomakh) ?–1215 1173 1173 brother of Roman I (first time)
Sviatoslav III Olgovichi ?–1194 1174 1174 son of Vsevolod II (first time)
Yaroslav II Izyaslavichi (Monomakh) ?–1180 1174 1175 son of Iziaslav II (first time)
Roman I Rostislavichi (Monomakh) ?–1180 1175 1177 (second time)
Sviatoslav III Olgovichi ?–1194 1177 1180 (second time)
Yaroslav II Izyaslavichi (Monomakh) ?–1180 1180 1180 (second time)
Rurik II Rostislavichi (Monomakh) ?–1215 1180 1182 (second time)
Sviatoslav III Olgovichi ?–1194 1182 1194 (third time)
Rurik II Rostislavichi (Monomakh) ?–1215 1194 1202 (third time)
Igor III Izyaslavichi (Monomakh) ?–? 1202 1202 son of Yaroslav II (first time)
Rurik II Rostislavichi (Monomakh) ?–1215 1203 1206 jointly (fourth time)
Roman Mstislavich , Roman of Halych, Roman the Great.jpg Roman II the Great Izyaslavichi (Monomakh) 1160–1205 son of Mstislav II, jointly (1203-05)
Rostislav II Rostislavichi (Monomakh) 1173–1214 son of Rurik II, jointly (1204-06)
Vsevolod IV the Red Svyatoslavichi (Olgovichi) ?–1212 1206 1207 son of Sviatoslav III (first time)
Rurik II Rostislavichi (Monomakh) ?–1215 1207 1210 (fifth time)
Vsevolod IV the Red Svyatoslavichi (Olgovichi) ?–1212 1210 1212 (second time)
Igor III Izyaslavichi (Monomakh) ?–? 1212 1214 (second time)
Mstislav III Rostislavichi (Monomakh) ?–1223 1214 1223 son of Roman I
Vladimir IV Rostislavichi (Monomakh) 1187–1239 1223 1235 brother of Rostislav II
Iziaslav IV Siveria (Olgovichi) or
Rostislavichi (Monomakh)
1186–? 1235 1236 son of Vladimir Igorevich or Mstislav
Yaroslav Vsevolodovich (Spas Nereditsi).jpeg Yaroslav III Yurievichi (Monomakh) 1191–1246 1236 1238 son of Vsevolod the Big Nest (first time)
Michael of Chernigov 1688.jpg Michael II Svyatoslavichi (Olgovichi) 1185–1246 1238 1239 son of Vsevolod IV (first time)

Princes of Kiev (Mongol invasion)

Due to Mongol invasion in 1240 Michael of Chernigov left Kiev to seek military assistance from the Kingdom of Hungary (Béla IV). During that time Prince of Smolensk Rostislav occupied Kiev, but was captured the same year by Daniel of Galicia who placed his voivode Dmytro to guard Kiev while the Grand Prince was away. Being unsuccessful in Hungary, Michael visited Konrad I in Masovia. Receiving no results in Poland, he eventually asked Daniel of Galicia for a sanctuary due to the invasion of Mongols.

Portrait Name Branch Born-Died Ruled From Ruled Until Notes
Rostislav Mikhailovich Smolensk (Rostislavichi) 1210–1262 1239 1239 son of Michael II
Voivode Dmytro 1239 1240 appointed by Daniel of Galicia
Michael of Chernigov 1688.jpg Michael II Svyatoslavichi (Olgovichi) 1185–1246 1241 1243 (second time)
Yaroslav Vsevolodovich (Spas Nereditsi).jpeg Yaroslav III Yurievichi (Monomakh) 1191–1246 1243 1246 (second time)
Alexander Newski.jpg St. Alexander Nevsky Vladimirsky (Monomakh) 1220–1263 1246 1263 son of Yaroslav III
Yaroslav Yaroslavich in Novgorod.jpeg Yaroslav IV Vladimirsky (Monomakh) 1230–1271 1263 1271 brother of Alexander
Lev Danylovich of Halych.PNG Lev Galicia (Monomakh) 1228–1301 1271 1301 son of Daniel
Volodymyr-Ivan Ivanovich Siveria (Olgovichi) ?–? 1301 ?
Stanislav Ivanovich Siveria (Olgovichi) 1228–1301 ? 1321

Olshanski dynasty

Since the 14th century the principality of Kiev started to fall under the influence of Grand Duchy of Lithuania. In 1299 Metropolitan of Kiev Maximus moved his metropolitan see from Kiev to Vladimir-on-Klyazma. In 1321 after the battle on the Irpin River Gediminas installed one of his subjects Mindgaugas from the house of Olshanski, a descendant of exiled to the Byzantine Empire family of Vseslav of Polotsk.

Portrait Name Branch Born-Died Ruled From Ruled Until Notes
Mindaugas Holshanski POL COA Hippocentaurus.svg ?–? 1321 1324 son of Holsha Romanovich
Algimantas-Michael POL COA Hippocentaurus.svg ?–? 1324 1331[15] son of Mindaugas

Rurik dynasty

In 1331 Kiev once again was taken by members of Rurik dynasty (Olgovich branch), the prince of Putivl.

Portrait Name Branch Born-Died Ruled From Ruled Until Notes
Fyodor (Teodoras) Siverski (Olgovichi) ?–? 1331 1362 son of Ivan
Prince of Kiev
First monarch Vladimir VI
Last monarch Simonas
Formation 1362
Abolition 1471

After the Battle of Blue Waters in 1362, Kiev and surrounding areas were incorporated into the Grand Duchy of Lithuania by Algirdas, Grand Duke of Lithuania.


Portrait Name Branch Born-Died Ruled From Ruled Until Notes
Vladimir VI COA of Gediminaičiai dynasty Lithuania.svg ?–? 1362 1394 son of Algirdas
Skirgailo.jpg Casimir COA of Gediminaičiai dynasty Lithuania.svg 1354–1397 1395 1397 son of Algirdas


Portrait Name Branch Born-Died Ruled From Ruled Until Notes
Ivan POL COA Hippocentaurus.svg ?–? 1397 c. 1402 son of Algimantas (in 1404-11 Jurgis Gedgaudas as voivode)
Andrew POL COA Hippocentaurus.svg ?–? c. 1412 c. 1422 son of Ivan
Michael IV POL COA Hippocentaurus.svg ?–1433 c. 1422 c. 1432 son of Ivan
Michael V Boloban POL COA Hippocentaurus.svg ?–1435 c. 1433 c. 1435 son of Simonas


Portrait Name Branch Born-Died Ruled From Ruled Until Notes
Lithuanian Grand Duke Švitrigaila.jpg Boleslav COA of Gediminaičiai dynasty Lithuania.svg 1370–1452 1432 1440 son of Algirdas
Alexander-Olelko Herb Pogon Litewska.jpg ?–1454 1443 1454 son of Vladimir
Simonas Herb Pogon Litewska.jpg 1418–1470 1454 1470 son of Alexander

See also


  1. Wilson, Andrew (2002). The Ukrainians. Unexpected Nation. Yale University Press. pp. 31–32. ISBN 0-300-09309-8.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. Duczko, Wladyslaw (2004). Viking Rus: Studies on the Presence of Scandinavians in Eastern Europe. Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands. ISBN 90-04-13874-9
  3. Noonan, Thomas (2001). The Khazar Qaghanate and Its Impact On the Early Rus' State: The translatio imperii from Itil to Kiev. Nomads in the Sedentary World, Anatoly Mikhailovich Khazanov and Andre Wink, eds. p. 76-102. Richmond, England: Curzon. ISBN 0-7007-1370-0
  4. Golden, Peter Benjamin (1982). The Question of the Rus' Qaganate. Archivum Eurasiae Medii Aevi. pp. 77-92
  5. Brook, Kevin Alan (1996-2009). An Introduction to the History of Khazaria
  6. Pritsak, Omeljan (1981). The origin of Rus. Cambridge, Mass.: Distributed by Harvard University Press for the Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute.
  7. Zuckerman, Constantine (2007). The Khazars and Byzantium - The First Encounter. In The World of the Khazars: New Perspectives - Selected Papers from the Jerusalem 1999 International Khazar Colloquium, eds. Peter Benjamin Golden, Haggai Ben-Shammai, and András Róna-Tas, pp. 399-432. Leiden, Netherlands: Brill.
  8. Rurikid Dynasty DNA Project - News
  9. Stratification of Y-haplogroup N1c, Jaakko Häkkinen. 5 August 2010. University of Helsinki.
  10. Sveerne (konung of Holmgård (Novgorod) and Kønugård (Kiev))
  11. Olga was first of Rurikid to be baptized by Emperor Constantine VII but failed to bring Christianity to Kiev
  12. Leszek Moczulski, Narodziny Międzymorza, p.475, Bellona SA, Warszawa 2007, ISBN 978-83-11-10826-4
  13. Ярополк is modern Ukrainian, Jaropełk is Polish, Jaropluk is Czech, Jaropelkas is Lithuanian, Iaropelkos is Greek, Jaropolk is German and Swedish.
  14. The Old Slavonic is Свѧтопълкъ in the Cyrillic alphabet, the modern Ukrainian is Святополк, Polish is Świętopełk, Czech is Svatopluk, and Slovak is Svätopluk. Reconstructed, his name is Sventopluk. More commonly, his name is given in its Latin and Frankish equivalents: Suentopolcus, Suatopluk, Zventopluk, Zwentibald, Zwentibold, Zuentibold, or Zuentibald.