Rostislav Mstislavich Rurik of Kiev, Prince of Smolensk, Prince of Novgorod, Grand Prince of Kiev, was born circa 1110 to Mstislav I Vladimirovich of Kiev (1076-1132) and Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden (c1080-1122) and died 14 March 1167 of unspecified causes.

Rostislav Mstislavich (baptized Michael [1]; ca. 1107/1109.9[2] - 14 March 1167 ) - Prince of Smolensk (1127-1167) [3], Prince of Novgorod (1154), Grand Prince of Kiev (1154-1155, 1159-1161, 1161-1167) son of [[Mstislav I Vladimirovich of Kiev (1076-1132)| Mstislav Vladimirovich , grandson of Vladimir Monomakh. His mother waa Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden, daughter of the Swedish king Inge the Elder .

Prince of Smolensk

See also: The internecine war in Russia (1146-1154) Rostislav was the best guardian of people's veche rights. Particularly characteristic feature of the Smolensk Principality was the complete merging of the prince's squad with the Zemshchina which took the most active part in all social and political affairs. The Princes of Smolensk themselves enjoyed very limited rights. Rostislav Mstislavich did not limit the rights of the Zemshchina , but, on the contrary, began to rely on it in all matters. In the early days of the reign of Smolensk, the young prince in all things submitted to the dictates of his father; even the initiative of the Smolyan struggle against the Princes of Polotsk belongs not to Rostislav, but to his father Mstislav. Features of personal temperament attracted Rostislav Mstislavich to peaceful, organizational activities. The whole essence of his reign was that he "arranged" the principality of Smolensk. Politically unite the Smolensk krivichs, make the Smolensk region rich, strong and independent from other principalities - this was the purpose of its domestic policy.

Surrounded on all sides by Russian lands, the Principality of Smolensk was freed from constant wars with foreign tribes by its geographical position. Rostislav urged Metropolitan Nikita to place Bishop Manuila in Smolensk.

In 1137, Rostislav Mstislavich conceived the knowledge of the space of all lands and lands that were in use of Smolyan, as well as the number of towns, pogosts, villages, fisheries, the state of trade, so that on the basis of the collected data, the amount of tax should be more accurately and evenly distributed, the Principality of Smolensk could pay him. For this he gathered in Smolensk a veche consisting of representatives of all towns and villages; the result of the meeting was September 30, 1150, the "charter" given by the Smolensk bishopric.

Rostislav cared much about collecting and copying books and manuscripts. In Smolensk itself, in other cities and villages in his time, there were book depositories of secular and spiritual literature.

At the same time, Rostislav did not shy away from participating in the struggle for the great reign, which reached its peak in his time. He was a loyal ally of his elder brother - Izyaslav Mstislavich, together with him fought against Yuri Dolgoruky, especially active in 1147-1151. The power of Rostislav increased so much that in 1147 the Principality of Ryazan voluntarily recognized the vassal dependence on Smolensk.

The Kiev reign

See also: The internecine war in Russia (1158-1161)

Rostislav Mstislavich, image from the Russian Biographical Dictionary

After Izyaslav Mstislavich's death, in November 1154, the latter's co-ruler, old Vyacheslav Vladimirovich, called Rostislav on the throne of Kiev to share power with him. The seniority of Rostislav was recognized by the Princes of Ryazan and Novgorod, who accepted his son Davyd Rostislavich.

Already at the beginning of 1154 Vyacheslav Vladimirovich died, Veliky Novgorod received Yuri Dolgoruky's son Mstislav, and Kiev put forward the claims of the Prince of Chernigov Izyaslav Davydovich and Yuri Dolgoruky himself. Both of them, according to the ladder system, had more rights to the Grand Principality of Kiev than Rostislav. Yuri made a campaign from Suzdal to Kiev through the principality of Smolensk, and Rostislav had to leave Kiev and withdraw the Smolensk regiments to meet his uncle. Before the collision did not come, but Rostislav recognized his uncle's seniority. This greatly angered his ally Mstislav, son of Izyaslav Mstislavich, who was ready to support him. And although Kiev was occupied by Izyaslav Davydovich, at the approach of Yuri he yielded to him the reign. In 1156, Rostislav's seniority was recognized by Izyaslav Davydovich's nephew Svyatoslav Vladimirovich Vshchizhsky.

Yuri soon died (probably poisoned by boyars) (1157) at a time when Rostislav and Mstislav and Izyaslav were preparing a speech against him. Izyaslav returned to Kiev, but in 1158 he attempted to interfere in Galician affairs, and the Galicians supported Rostislav and Mstislav. Since 1158, the Novgorod prince was the son of Rostislav Svyatoslav (with a short break in 1160-61, when Novgorod was reigned by Mstislav Rostislavich, Yuri Dolgoruky's grandson)

Izyaslav Davydovich was deposed in 1158, and Rostislav was summoned to Kiev by Mstislav Izyaslavich and Yaroslav Osmomysl. Not wanting to be a puppet of the southern princes, and also not to give Smolensk, Novgorod and Kiev citizens a reason to accuse him of striving for autocracy and out of respect for people's rights and customs, Rostislav sent to Kiev two ambassadors from the West, from Smolensk - Ivan Ruchechnik, from Novgorod - Yakun, to agree with the people of Kiev on what terms they invite him to the Kiev princes. Mstislav Izyaslavich, he singled out Belgorod, Torchesk and Trypillia from his possessions. In 1159, Rostislav sent an army to liberate the town of Oleshyein the lower reaches of the Dnieper, captured volnitsa so-called. Berlennikov. Izyaslav, who was not sent back to Chernigov by Svyatoslav Olgovich, entered into an alliance with his nephews Vsevolodovich and the Polovtsians, made a ruinous trip to the principality of Smolensk, after which he managed to return to Kiev, but he was again defeated by Mstislav and the Galicians and killed by Chorni Klobuky on March 6, 1161

Boris Chorikov . Rostislav and his nephew Mstislav find the dying Izyaslav.

The further reign of Rostislav as Grand Prince of Kiev was quite calm (until 1167), especially in contrast to previous years. Inconsistencies happened only occasionally, and Rostislav always tried to reconcile the warring parties and prevent conflicts. Rostislav's authority did not experience serious assassination attempts. He tried to maintain the security of Kiev and followed the order. In 1162, he repulsed the Polovtsians who attacked the Chorni Klobuky, and in 1163 married his son Ryurik to the daughter of the Polovtsian Belyuk Khan and since then he was allied with the Polovtsians, but the attacks of other Polovtsian hordes continued. In 1165, he actually annexed to the Smolensk Principality of Vitebsk, where he installed his son Davyd Rostislavich. For this, the former Prince of Vitebsk Roman was given control of two Smolensk towns.

In 1166, the Polovtsians took the rapids and began to rob Russian and Byzantine merchants. Rostislav sent messengers to the princes, ordering him to gather in Kiev with all the regiments. The call of the Grand Duke responded: Mstislav Izyaslavich with the brothers Yaroslav Izyaslavich and Yaropolk Izyaslavich, Vladimir Andreyevich, Vladimir Mstislavich, Gleb Yuryevich, the sons of Rostislav - Ryurik Rostislavich of Peremyshl (1063-1092), Davyd Rostislavich, Mstislav Rostislavich, the Galician prince Yaroslav Vladimirovich, who sent considerable help, and several other princes. A huge Russian army descended to Kanev and stood there until the end of river navigation, guarding merchant ships.

At the end of his reign, the Novgorodians disliked their prince Svyatoslav, the son of Rostislav, and drove him out of Novgorod. Rostislav decided to go to Veliky Novgorod in 1167, in order to reconcile his son with the Novgorodians. When the Smolensk people found out that their beloved prince was going to them, "not all the city of Smolensk was not enough" went out to meet him for 300 versts. Richly gifted with tar, Rostislav went to Novgorod via Toropets, but here he fell ill and therefore sent to his son in Novgorod to come to Velikiye Luki together with noble Novgorodians. Rostislav begged the ambassadors to reconcile with his son, not to part with him until the coffin, begged them to keep an alliance with Smolensk, as their best friends; son of Svyatoslav, he begged to get along with the Novgorodians. Both sides consolidated their alliance, and the Novgorodians promised to be faithful to Svyatoslav before the coffin. On the way back to Smolensk, Rostislav felt even worse, but, wanting to die at any price, he continued his journey.


Rostislav died in the village of Zarube, and his body was brought to Kiev and on April 2, 1167, he was buried in the Saint Theodor Monastery, Kiev.

Honoring in Christianity

Glorified by the Russian Orthodox Church in the face of saints as a faithful ; Memorial Day - March 14 (27) . Until 2016 had local reverence . By the decision of the Bishops' Council of the ROC on February 3, 2016, the general church veneration of the pious Prince Rostislav [8] was established .





  1. ^ Template:Книга: Литвина А. Ф., Успенский Ф. Б. Выбор имени у русских князей в X-XVI вв. — С. 600—601.
  2. ^ Согласно оценке Д. Домбровского.
  3. ^ ВТ-ЭСБЕ-Смоленская земля - Рудаков В. Е.


Offspring of Rostislav Mstislavich of Kiev (Ростислав Мстиславич) and unknown parent
Name Birth Death Joined with
Roman Rostislavich of Kiev (c1132-1180) 1132 1180 Smolensk, Smolensk Oblast, Russia Mariya Svyatovlavna of Novgorod-Seversky (1140-1175)
Ryurik II Rostislavich of Kiev (c1137-1212) 1137 1212 Anna Yuryevna of Turov (c1152-c1209)
Svyatoslav Rostislavich of Novgorod (c1139-1170) 1139 1170 Nomen nescio
Davyd Rostislavich of Novgorod (1140-1197) 1140 Smolensk, Smolensk Oblast, Russia 23 April 1197 Smolensk, Smolensk Oblast, Russia
Mstislav Rostislavich of Novgorod (c1143-1180) 1143 11 July 1180 Veliky Novgorod, Novgorod Oblast, Russia NN Yaroslavna of Halych (c1150-c1176)
Feodosya Glebovna of Ryazan (c1156-c1200)
Elena Rostislavna of Smolensk (c1145-c1195)
Agafiya Rostislavna of Smolensk (c1147-c1210) 1147 1210 Oleg Svyatoslavich of Novgorod-Seversky (c1137-1180)
Agrafena Rostislavna of Smolensk (c1165-1234) 1165 1234 Igor Glebovich of Ryazan (c1154-1194)
Unnamed daughter (c1150-c1220)


Offspring of Mstislav I Vladimirovich of Kiev (1076-1132) and Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden (c1080-1122)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Vsevolod Mstislavich of Pskov (c1095-1138) 1095 Veliky Novgorod, Novgorod Oblast, Russia February 1138 Pskov, Pskov Oblast, Russia Unnamed daughter of Svyatoslav Davydovich (c1103-c1160)
Izyaslav II Mstislavich of Kiev (c1097-1154) 1097 13 November 1154 Agnes of the Holy Roman Empire (c1116-1151)
Ingeborg Mstislavna of Kiev (c1100-c1145) 1100 1140 Knud Lavard (1096-1131)
Evpraksiya Mstislavna of Kiev (c1102-c1135) 1102 1140 Alexios Komnenos (1106-1142)
Malmfred Mstislavna of Kiev (c1105-c1140) 1105 Sigurd I of Norway (c1090-1130)
Eric II of Denmark (c1090-1137)
Maria Mstislavna of Kiev (c1108-c1155) 1108 1155 Vsevolod II Olgovich of Kiev (1094-1146)
Rostislav Mstislavich of Kiev (c1110-1167) 1110 14 March 1167
Rogneda Mstislavna of Kiev (c1112-c1159) 1112 1159 Yaroslav Svyatopolkovich of Volhynia (c1091-1123)
Svyatopolk Mstislavich of Volhynia (c1115-1154) 1115 20 February 1154 Eufimia of Olomouc (1115-c1170)
Kseniya Mstislavna of Kiev (c1118-c1160)

Offspring of Mstislav I Vladimirovich of Kiev (1076-1132) and Lyubava Dmitriyevna (c1104-c1170)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Euphrosyne Mstislavna of Kiev (1130-1193) 1130 1193 Géza II of Hungary (c1130-1162)
Yaropolk Mstislavich of Porossk (c1131-1149) 1131 1149
Vladimir III Mstislavich of Kiev (1132-1171) 1132 30 May 1171 Unnamed daughter of Beloš (c1130-c1190)
Rostislav Mstislavich of Kiev (c1110-1067)
Born: 1110 Died: 1167
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Vyacheslav I
Prince of Smolensk
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Yaroslav II
Prince of Novgorod
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Izyaslav II
Grand Prince of Kiev
Succeeded by
Izyaslav III
Preceded by
Mstislav II
Grand Prince of Kiev
Apr. 1159–12 Feb 1161
Succeeded by
Izyaslav III
Preceded by
Izyaslav III
Grand Prince of Kiev
6 Mar 1161–14 Mar 1167
Succeeded by
Mstislav II

Footnotes (including sources)

‡ General