Vsevolod Mstislavich of Pskov, Prince of Novgorod, Prince of Pereyaslavl, Prince of Turov and Pinsk, Prince of Pskov, was born 1095 in Veliky Novgorod, Novgorod Oblast, Russia to Mstislav I Vladimirovich of Kiev (1076-1132) and Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden (c1080-1122) and died February 1138 Pskov, Pskov Oblast, Russia of unspecified causes. He married Unnamed daughter of Svyatoslav Davydovich (c1103-c1160) in Veliky Novgorod, Russia.

Vsevolod Mstislavich (Russian: Всеволод Мстиславич), the patron saint of the city of Pskov, ruled as Prince of Novgorod in 1117–32, Prince of Pereyaslavl and Prince of Turov and Pinsk (1132) and Prince of Pskov in 1137–38.

Early life

The eldest son of Mstislav the Great and Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden, Vsevolod was born in Novgorod during his father's reign as prince there (1088–1093, 1095–1117) and given the baptismal name Gabriel, or Gavriil. His maternal grandfather was King Inge the Elder of Sweden. The date of his birth is unknown, although the idea has been advanced that the event was commemorated by the Church of the Dormition of the Mother of God in the Market Place, founded by Mstislav in 1103.[1]

He was enthroned as Prince of Novgorod after his father Mstislav Vladimirovich became Grand Prince of Kiev in 1117 and ruled Novgorod, with some interruption, until he was ousted by the Novgorodians in 1136. He was married in Veliky Novgorod to an unnamed daughter of Svyatoslav Davydovich in 1123 and his son, Ivan Vsevolodovich, who died in 1128, was born there.[2] In 1123, Vsevolod led the Novgorodians against the Estonians. These campaigns continued in 1130 and over the next several years.[3] Aside from Vladimir Yaroslavich, Vsevolod was the first Novgorodian prince known to have been in conflict with Finns (in 1123).[4]

Expulsion from Novgorod

Following his father's death in 1132, support for him began to erode in Novgorod. The same year, he was sent by his uncle, Grand Prince Yaropolk, to Pereyaslavl, to reign there. When he tried to return to Novgorod later that year, the Novgorodians refused to accept him back because they considered his move to Pereyaslavl as a betrayal: He had sworn an oath to die in Novgorod. That being said, the chronicles indicate that he was back leading a Novgorodian army in 1133. It was during that campaign that Vsevolod captured the city of Yuryev (modern Tartu, Estonia).[5]

In 1134, Vsevolod led an unsuccessful campaign in Vladimir-Suzdal during which, according to the Novgorodians, he showed indecisiveness, one of the reasons for his dismissal a little over a year later. On 28 May 1136, he was confined in the Archbishop's courtyard (compound) in Novgorod Kremlin along with his wife and family, guarded by thirty men so as not to escape. In mid-July he was allowed to leave, going to his uncle in Kiev.[6] The following year, he tried to come back to Novgorod at the head of an army but withdrew instead to Pskov, where he died in February 1138.[7] According to his own wishes, he was buried in the Church of Saint Demetrios in Pskov, which does not exist any more.

Vsevolod's dismissal from Novgorod has traditionally been seen as the end of Kievan power in the north and the beginning of the Novgorod Republic. After him a number of princes were invited in or dismissed over the next two centuries, although only a few, like Aleksandr Nevsky, could assert themselves in the city for a prolonged period.

Church-building and veneration

Cathedral of Saint Nicholas, constructed by Vsevolod in Novgorod.

In addition to leading Novgorodian armies on several campaigns, Vsevolod built a number of churches in and around the city: the Church of Saint John the Baptist on Opoka (1127–1130),[8] the Church of St. George in the Market Place (1133), the Church of the Dormition of the Mother of God in the Market Place (1133; built with Archbishop Nifont),[9] and the Church of St. George in the Yuryev Monastery.[10] It was Vsevolod who granted the charter to Ivan's Hundred, the first Russian merchant guild. In addition, the Cathedral of St. Nicholas in Yaroslav's Court, while often attributed to his father Mstislav, was mostly built during Vsevolod's tenure in Novgorod.

Vsevolod's comparatively early death prevented him from claiming the throne of Kiev. He was survived by a daughter, Verkhuslava, the wife of Bolesław IV the Curly. The prince was canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church as Vsevolod-Gavriil. In the Stepennaya Kniga (the "Book of Degrees of Royal Genealogy"), he is listed as a Pskov Wonderworker.[11] In 1193, his relics were moved from the Church of Saint Demetrios to the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Pskov. The Pskovians attached his name to a German sword with the inscription honorem meum nemini dabo, formerly preserved in the cathedral sacristy, but modern historians date the sword to the 15th century at the earliest.

Marriage and children

Married in 1123 in Veliky Novgorod to a Princess of Chernigov being an unnamed daughter of Svyatoslav Davydovich


  1. Ivan Vsevolodovich died as a child
  2. Verkhuslava, married in 1137 Bolesław IV the Curly, High Duke of Poland
  3. Vladimir Vsevolodovich
  4. Anna Vsevolodovna (1127-1128) died as a child on 10 April 1128
  5. Mstislav Vsevolodovich


Vsevolod Mstislavich
Born: ± 1103 Died: February 1138
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Davyd Svyatoslavich
Prince of Novgorod
Succeeded by
Svyatopolk II Mstislavich
Preceded by
Svyatopolk II Mstislavich
Prince of Novgorod
Succeeded by
Svyatoslav II Olgovich
Preceded by
Yaropolk Vladimirovich
Prince of Pereslavl
Succeeded by
Yuri I Vladimirovich Dolgoruky
Preceded by
Vyacheslav Vladimirovich
Prince of Turov and Pinsk
Succeeded by
Vyacheslav Vladimirovich
Preceded by
Prince of Pskov
Succeeded by
Svyatopolk Mstislavich


  1. ^ А.Ф. Литвина, В.Б. Успенский. Выбор имени у русских князей X-XVI вв. [Choice of personal names for the Russian princes of the 10th-16th centuries.] Moscow: Indrik, 2006. ISBN 5-85759-339-5. Page 503.
  2. ^ Arsenii Nikolaevich Nasanov, ed., Novgorodskaia pervaia letopis': Starshego i mladshego izvoda (Moscow and Leningrad: Nauka, 1950), 21, 206; Robert Michell and Neville Forbes, The Chronicle of Novgorod 1016-1471 (New York: American Medieval Society, 1970), 9.
  3. ^ Michell and Forbes, The Chronicle of Novgorod, 10.
  4. ^ Novgorod First Chronicle entry about the war, "1123". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. . In Swedish. Hosted by the National Archive of Finland. See [1] and Diplomatarium Fennicum from the menu.
  5. ^ Michell and Forbes, The Chronicle of Novgorod,13.
  6. ^ Michell and Forbes, The Chronicle of Novgorod, 14.
  7. ^ Michell and Forbes, The Chronicle of Novgorod, 15.
  8. ^ Michell and Forbes, The Chronicle of Novgorod, 11. The church was overhauled by Archbishop Evfimii II in the 1450s but still stands in the Marketplace in Novgorod.
  9. ^ Michell and Forbes, The Chronicle of Novgorod,13. These churches, too were rebuilt by Archbishop Evfimii II and still stand in the marketplace in Novgorod.
  10. ^ Michell and Forbes, The Chronicle of Novgorod,, 10.
  11. ^ Stepennaya Kniga, volume 21 of Polnoe Sobranie Russkikh Letopisei, (St. Petersburg: A. Aleksandrova, 1908), pp. 193-203.

External links


Offspring of Vsevolod Mstislavich of Pskov and Unnamed daughter of Svyatoslav Davydovich (c1103-c1160)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Ivan Vsevolodovich of Novgorod (1124-1128) 1124 Veliky Novgorod, Novgorod Oblast, Russia 1128
Verkhuslava Vsevolodovna of Novgorod (1125-1162) 1125 15 March 1162 Bolesław IV the Curly of Poland (c1125-1173)
Vladimir Vsevolodovich of Novgorod (c1126-c1141) 1126 1141
Anna Vsevolodovna (1127-1128) 1127 10 April 1128
Mstislav Vsevolodovich (1128-1168) 1128 1168



Footnotes (including sources)