GRAND PRINCE ANDREI BOGOLYUBSKIY OF THE XII CENTURY IS JESUS CHRIST DURING HIS STAY IN VLADIMIR AND SUZDAL RUSSIA OF THE XII CENTURY, WHERE HE SPENT MOST OF HIS LIFE.
1. A BRIEF BIOGRAPHY OF ANDREI BOGOLYUBSKIY ACCORDING TO THE ROMAN VERSION.
Following in particular , we shall start with a brief reminder of the Romanov version of the biography of ANDREI Yuryevich BOGOLYUBSKIY. As we progress we shall straight away outline some focal points of the correspondence with Jesus Christ we discovered, which we shall discuss later.
ANDREI Yuryevich BOGOLYUBSKIY – Grand prince of Suzdal and Vladimir, the second son of Yuri (Georgi) Vladimirovich Dolgorukiy from the Polovtsian princess, khan Aepa's daughter. ANDREI was murdered in 1174 on the 63rd or 65th year of his life therefore he was born in 1109 or 1111. PRACTICALLY NOTHING IS KNOWN about ANDREI BOGOLYUBSKIY’s life prior to 1146, apart from the fact that he got married after 1130 to a daughter of the rich boyar Kuchka, who owned territories on the banks of the Moscow River. ANDREI BOGOLYUBSKIY WAS BORN AND SPENT OVER 35 YEARS OF HIS LIFE IN ROSTOV AND SUZDAL LAND, which he received as a domain from his father Yuri, the younger son of Vladimir Monomach.
Yuri (Georgi) Dolgorukiy, a dynamic and ambitious prince, when dwelling in the land of Suzdal he coveted the throne of Kiev. A good opportunity to claim his rights for the supreme Russian throne presented itself to Yuri in 1146, when the Kievans invited his nephew Iziaslav Mstislavich to be their prince. A HARD-FOUGHT BATTLE BEGAN BETWEEN THE UNCLE AND HIS NEPHEW, AND NEARLY ALL THE RUSSIAN REGIONS AND ALL THE BRANCHES OF THE PRINCELY HOUSE, AS WELL AS THEIR NEIGHBOURS – THE POLOVTSY (CUMANS), THE UGRIANS AND THE POLES TOOK PART. Yuri captured Kiev and subsequently was driven out of it twice, and only in 1155, already after Iziaslav’s death he finally seized Kiev and became the Grand Prince of Kiev in 1157. (It is likely that in this fragment of the Russian chronicle Yuri Dogorukiy is the king Herod of the Gospels, and Iziaslav - Izia+Slav, Jesus-Slava (Glory) – is Jesus Christ – Author).
Over the eight year long battle for Kiev ANDREI BOGOLYUBSKIY was an active aid to his father and more than once he had the opportunity to display his incredible courage. For the first time he appears on the historical stage in 1146. In 1149 ANDREI obtained from his father the town of Vyshgorod, 7 versts from Kiev.
In 1152 ANDREI participated in Yury’s march on Chernigov, undertaken in alliance with the princes of Ryasan, Muromsk, Seversk and the Polovtsy, where he showed the allied princes how to independently lead their troops into action.
But it seems that ANDREI did not like it in the land of Kiev, and he left IN SECRET, WITHOUT HIS FATHER’S BLESSING, for the land of Suzdal where he then permanently settled. ANDREI took with him from Vyshgorod an important holy relic, the icon of Mother of God, which according to legend is believed to have been painted by St.Luke and is known today as The Theotokos of Vladimir (this is probably the Gospel Flight to Biblical Egypt of Jesus Christ together with Mary Mother of God – Author). When they were transporting the icon the horses stopped 11 versts from Vladimir and refused to go further. This was interpreted as a sign and in that place ANDREI founded a village of Bogolyubovo, which became his favourite residence and which gave him his sobriquet Bogoloyubsky (in history). His father, Yuri Dolgorukiy did not want to acknowledge ANDREI’s affection towards Rostov and Suzdal land .But when Yuri Dolgorukiy passed away in 1157, the kissing of the cross oath was broken and the natives of Rostov and Suzdal "задумавше вси, пояша Андрея, сына его старейшего и посадиша и в Ростове на отни столе и Суждали, занеже бе любим всеми за премногую его добродетель, юже имяше преже к Богу и ко всем сущим под ним". ANDREI’s activities as an independent prince of Rostov and Suzdal lands are very important from the historical point of view: HERE HE IS THE FOUNDER OF THE NEW NATIONAL ORDER, THE FIRST RUSSIAN PRINCE WHO CLEARLY AND FIRMLY STRIVES TO ESTABLISH AUTOCRACY AND SOVEREIGNTY.
He chose Vladimir, a small town located on Klyazma River to be his capital and lived mostly in nearby Bogolyubovo. ANDREI wanted not only to raise Vladimir above the old cities of his principality, but to turn it into a second Kiev. Almost immediately after being proclaimed the Grand prince ANDREI founded in 1158 in Vladimir the Assumption Cathedral made of stone and bestowed it with several villages and gave it a tenth from the flocks and the trade taxes. In Bogolyubovo ANDREI also constructed the magnificent Nativity Cathedral of Mother of God.
In 1162 ANDREI made an attempt to set up a new eparchy in Vladimir with a new metropolitan. He had a candidate in mind for a new metropolitan, a certain Fyodor or Fyodorets (it is possible that the information about Feodor = Theo + Dar (Gift) = God’s Gift also became a part of the Gospel biography of John the Baptist – Author). He sent his request to Patriarch of Constantinople, but it was denied. The chronicles report that the bishop Feodor (he was consecrated a Rostov bishop, but he lived in Vladimir) did not want to recognise the authority of the metropolitan of Kiev regardless of the admonitions of his prince, and was universally despised for his arrogance and cruelty. In the end ANDREI gave Feodor up to be taken into custody to Kiev for trial by the Metropolitan in Kiev, where FEODOR SUFFERED A BRUTAL EXECUTION (death of John the Baptist ? - Author). This matter present itself not entirely clearly .
In religious affairs, according to some scholars, ANDREI was an autocrat: HE EXPELLED LEON THE BISHOP OF SUZDAL for prohibiting the consumption of meat during religious holidays if they fell on a Wednesday or a Friday. It is very likely that bishop Feodor’s (the Gospels John the Baptist – Author) unwillingness to recognise the metropolitan of Kiev can be attributed to the prince’s desire to have an autocephalous bishop .
In 1164 ANDREI led a military campaign against the Kama Bulgars, captured their city of Bryahimov and razed the other three cities to the ground. The success of this campaign was attributed to the Icon of Vladimir Theotokos, which was taken with them during the campaign. (Mary Mother of God was likely to be still alive at that time and only later the chroniclers in hindsight interpreted the facts from her biography as the deeds of the ‘icon’, i.e. allegedly the icon of the Mother of God – Author).
ANDREI WISHED TO MAKE THE ROSTOV AND SUZDAL PRINCIPALITY SUPERIOR OVER ALL OF THE RUSSIAN LANDS; by bringing Kiev and Novgorod under his control. He began to interfere in Novorod’ affairs demanding that the Novgorodians accepted the princes of his choice.
Pursuing such a policy towards Novgorod and Kiev led ANDREI to bitter disputes with the princes of Southern Russia. In 1169 ANDREI sent a huge army against the Prince of Kiev Mstislav Izyaslavich.
In 1169 for the first time Kiev was conquered and devastated. ANDREI refused to rule in Kiev himself and asked his younger brother Gleb to govern there. Such a defiance of Kiev was a milestone in Russian history. This act underlined the declining importance of the city, showing that the CENTRE OF POLITICAL AND RELIGIOUS LIFE IN RUSSIA HAD BEEN MOVED TO THE NORTH, TO THE UPPER COURSE OF THE VOLGA RIVER. Following the conquest of Kiev ANDREI decided to overpower Novgorod.
ANDREI marched onto Novgorod with a united army consisting of the duchy of Rostov, duchy of Suzdal, duchy of Smolensk, duchy of Ryazan and Murom. But this march failed: during the Suzdal troops’ attack of Novgorod in 1170, the besieged sallied and sent the enemy flying. Novgorod attributed its salvation to the miracle of the Icon of the Mother of God (Theotokos) and to commemorate it established the holiday of Honourable Sign of Our Lady, which was later adopted by the entire Russian church .ANDREI’s dominance over the South seemed to be lost. On the 28 June 1174 in Bogolyubovo death befell him. The prince’s courtiers embittered with his severity formed a conspiracy (conspiracy between Judas and the Gospel Pharisees? – Author), headed by: Yakim Kuchkov, ANDREI’s brother-in-law from his 1st wife (who intended to take revenge for the execution of his brother), Peter, Yakim’s brother-in-law and Anbal the key-keeper, born Jassin (from the Caucasus). The conspirators, 20 in number, burst into his chambers (i.e. his bedroom – Author) breaking down the door. The prince wanted to reach out for his sword which used to belong to St.Boris, but it was misplaced: Anbal has hidden it in advance (Judas’ betrayal? – Author). In spite of his advanced age the prince was still quite strong and though unarmed bravely resisted his murderers. ‘Woe unto you, you infidels! - said Andrei, why conform unto Goriaser (Boris’ murderer?) what evil have I done to you? If you spill my blood, God will take vengeance on you for my bread’. In the end Andrei fell under the blows. The plotters thought the prince killed, took the body of their comrade killed by mistake by them in the struggle, and were ready to leave, but heard the moaning of the prince, WHO ROSE UP ON HIS FEET AND WENT TO THE INNER PORCH (Jesus’ resurrection after his execution? – Author). They came back and finished off the prince, WHO LEANT AGAINST THE LESTVICHNY STOLP (WOODEN STAIRCASE PILAR) (the crucifixion of Jesus on a pillar or a cross?- Author)
In the morning the conspirators killed the prince’s favourite Prokopiy and plundered the treasury. At first they feared revenge from the people of Vladimir. But the people of Vladimir were indifferent to the news of what had happened. The prince’s murder and pillage of his palace were followed by the murders of the prince’s governors and court servants and the pillage of their houses; the foreign craftsmen of the churches were also robbed. On the first day after Andrei’s murder Kuzma, a faithful servant of the deceased prince, a native of Kiev took the naked body of his master lying in the garden, wrapped it in a cloak and a rug and wanted to take it inside a church. But the drunken servants did not want to open up so he could do nothing but lay the body down on the porch. Then Kuzma began to wail over the prince’s body: ‘Even your serfs don’t want to know you, master … and these ones do not let me lay you down in the church’. Two days the body was lying on the church porch, until hegumen Arseny of Kozmodemyansk carried the body inside the church and served panihida (the last rights). On the sixth day when the riots abated the people of Vladimir sent for prince’s body to Bogolyubov. When they saw the prince’s banner carried in front of the coffin, the people burst into tears, having remembered the many good things the murdered prince had done in his lifetime. PRINCE ANDREI IS BEATIFIED AS A SAINT BY THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH. ‘Andrei was the first RUSSIAN GRAND PRINCE (VELIKORUSSKY PRINCE)’ .
Now let us look at the Romanov version of Andrei Bogolyubskiy biography once again, but in more detail.
2. WHAT IS KNOWN ABOUT ANDREI BOGOLYUBSKIY’S MOTHER AND HIS CHILDHOOD YEARS?
The answer to the question stated in the title of this chapter is very simple: virtually nothing is known. The Romanov version of the Russian history vaguely reports only the name of his mother: a certain Polovtsian princess, khan Aepa's daughter . As has been said before the first half of Andrei Bogolyubskiy’s biography is also completely unknown: from his birth in circa 1109-1111 (the date computable, incidentally, only on circumstantial grounds, see above) up until 1146. So it means that the events of an almost 35 year period in Andrei’s life are submerged in obscurity on the pages of the Russian chronicles. We will note that according to the Gospels Jesus Christ reappears after a long absence in Jerusalem approximately being the same age – about 30 years old.
AT THE SAME TIME THE IMAGE OF MARIA THEOTOKOS (THE BIRTH GIVER) IS RUNNING THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE SECOND HALF OF THE BIOGRAPHY OF ANDREI BOGOLYUBSKIY. It is her that many of the important events of this period are connected to. We shall learn the details in the following paragraphs. Thus Virgin Mary is constantly present by prince’s Andrei side. The more recent chronologists being already under the pressure of the scaligerian chronology give a vague allegorical interpretation of such accounts given in the old documents, alleging that it was the Image of Theotokos, i.e. the holy icon, that was constantly by Andrei Bogolyubskiy’s side. But added to that the icon turned out to be animate! It moves independently, travels around, engages in a conversation, see below. Most likely, it is a reflection of the fact that on the pages of the old Russian primary sources they referred to the God Birth Giver (Theotokos) herself, the woman and not the icon, who accompanied Andrei-Christ in reality.
Yuri (Georgi) Dolgorukiy, Andrei’s father also had a second wife. There is a little bit more known about her, though also not much. N.M.Karamzin reports: ‘Georgi’s second wife was probably Greek, as he left to Czar-Grad; but our Historians call her the Greek Princess Helen without any reason’ , book 1, annotation 405 to v.2, ch.16. Despite the very misery of information an interesting fact pops up here. As according to our reconstruction Jesus Christ and his mother Theotokos lived specifically in Czar-Grad for some time. Moreover, possibly due to that, the legend about the second wife of Andrei Bogolyuskiy’s father reflected the fact that she left Russia for Czar-Grad.
The mother of Andrei Bogolyubskiy, a khan’s daughter, a Polovtsian princess lived in Russia. It turns out that it is for a reason that the Orthodox Church tradition claims that ‘Russia’ is the ‘Home of Mother of God (Theotokos, Birth Giver of God)’. For example the letters addressed to S. Razin contain the appeals ‘to stand up for the Home of the Holy Mother of God’. We will quote one of the letters to Razin: ‘And we, the Great Don Army stood up for the house of the Holy Mary Mother of God and Him, the Great Prince and for all the common people’ , p.28. It of course refers to Russia, as the Christian church was not called ‘The House of Theotokos’. It might have been called ‘the House of Christ’.
Now, by the way, we begin to better understand why Russia = Scythia was earlier called Sarmatia. This is exactly the way Russia was marked on the many old maps, for example on Ptolemy’s ‘classical antiquity’ maps, see ‘Bibleiskaya Rus’’ (‘Biblical Russia’) and Chron6, ch.15. We have already expressed an idea that the name Sar-Matia could have originated from the Slavic Czar Mat’, i.e. Mother of the Czar. Mary Mother of God (the Birth Giver of God, Theotokos) was probably referred to in this way. And as she lived in Russia, then after Christianity spread all over the world, Russia, as the HOME OF THEOTOKOS (BIRTH GIVER OF GOD) was also given the name of MOTHER OF THE CZAR = SARMATIA.
It is not very clear where exactly was Jesus Christ – Andrei Bogolyubskiy – Andronicus Comnenus was born. It could have been in Russia (as claimed by the Russian chronicles), it could have been in Czar-Grad. It is possible that the khan’s daughter Maria at some point left Russia, visited Czar-Grad and for some time lived there with the infant Andrei-Jesus.
3. THE STRUGGLE OF THE SENIOR YURI (GEORGI) DOLGORUKIY WITH HIS NEPHEW IZYASLAV MSTISLAVICH THE YOUNG – IS THE STRUGGLE BETWEEN THE GOSPELS HEROD AND ‘BABY JESUS’.
It is likely that Yuri Dolgorukiy appears in a dual role in Russian history. Firstly, as the father to Jesus Christ (Andrei Bogolyubskiy), i.e. the Gospels Joseph – a positive character. And secondly, in a separate and large fragment of his chronicle biography he is the Gospel King Herod – a negative character.
We have already pointed out an interesting fact, that ‘a good opportunity to claim his rights for the supreme Russian throne presented itself to Yuri in 1146, when the Kievans invited his nephew Iziaslav Mstislavich to be their prince. A hard-fought battle began between the uncle and his nephew, and nearly all the Russian regions and all the branches of the princely house, as well as their neighbours – the Polovtsy (Cumans), the Ugrians and the Poles took part in it’ .
We will note that the events unfolded at the time, when Andrei Bogolyubskiy was still in the shadow on the pages of the Russian chronicles. Soon he will appear as an active character, however for now in his place, as his deputy, on the historical stage there is Iziaslav, the opponent of Yuri (Georgi) Dolgorukiy. That is why it is possible that Jesus Christ appears here on the pages of our chronicles under the name of IZIA-SLAV, that is Jesus-Slava, Jesus-Slav. We will remind you that according to the Gospels ‘the evil’ king Herod persecuted baby Jesus and even wishes to kill him. What danger did Herod see in young Jesus? The Gospel version quite clearly explains the reason for the conflict. The matter is that in the face of Jesus there was born the King of Jews. Matthew says: ‘After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews?’ (Matthew 2:1-2). Clearly King Herod saw Jesus as a rival for the throne and decided to eliminate him.
The Russian version considerably complements and clarifies the heart of the matter. It turns out that it concerned a hard dynastic struggle between the senior Yuri Dolgorukiy and the young Izia-Slav Mstislavich, his nephew, who was significantly younger than Yuri. N.M.Karamzin devoted a big chapter describing their struggle called ‘Grand Prince Iziaslav Mstislavich’ (it noticeably stands out next to the other chapters due to its great volume) , book.1, v.2, ch.12. Incidentally it’s quite possible that the names YURI and HEROD sound similar and could have been confused. As the Gospels were written most likely by Czar-Grad chroniclers, they had a better idea about Czar-Grad history, but much worse the distant, from the geographical point of view, events in Russia of the XII century.
This is the account given by the Russian sources of the Romanov edition about the opposition between Yuri Dolgorukiy (Herod?) and
Izia-Slav (Jesus?) Mstislavich. ‘Georgi Vladimirovich Suzdalskiy (aka Yuri Dolgorukiy – Author) saw DISCONTENTEDLY, that proud Iziaslav despite of the ancient covenant, AFTER TAKING AWAY THE SUCCESSION FROM HIS UNCLES, sat on the Kiev throne’ , book1, v.2, ch.12, column 127. And further: ‘Georgi got offended … ‘the cruel nephew ‘ENTIRELY ESTRANGES ME AND MY CHILDREN FROM THE RUSSIAN LAND’ (at that time this name was predominantly attributed to Southern Russia)’ , book 1, v.2, ch.12, column 139.
The details of this struggle are very tangled. There are descriptions of the numerous battles given, the complex inter dynastic disputes and intrigues, etc. V.N.Tatishev speaks of, for example: ‘Yuri’s crime’ , v.2, p.243. And further: ‘Iziaslav … witnessed with regret … Yuri’s speedy oath-breaking’ , v.2, p. 243-244. Besides: ‘The Kievans heard that YURI INTENDED TO RUIN IZIASLAV, and many wept about it, and everyone, both the nobles and the common people took against Yuri and secretly tried to get Izialav back in Kiev (Kiev here is probably Czar-Grad – Author) … The others in secret … enrooted the hatred and danger of Yuri’s lust for power, spread word about YURI’S WICKEDNESS AND FEROCITY in all the cities, denouncing his disorderly life and ruling, and they corresponded with Iziaslav, but everything was done in secret, so that Yuri, who squandered his time in indolence, could not learn anything’ , v.2, p.251.
It further says that at some point his associates ‘persuaded Georgi (Yuri Dolgorukiy - Author) to cease the WRETCHED HOSTILITY. They made peace in April: Iziaslav admitted his guilt, i.e. admitted to be the weakest; met up with his uncles in Peresopnitsa and set with them on the same carpet … Everyone seemed to be happy, BUT SOON GEORGI’S CUNNING WAS REVEALED, HE DID NOT FULFIL THE CONDITIONS and did not return to Iziaslav his spoils of war … Masses of citizens swarmed towards Iziaslav (Jesus? – Author). ‘You are our Lord!’ they exclaimed: ‘we do not want neither Georgi, nor his brother!’ Followed by a great many of people on his way out of the Church of Sophia, Iziaslav entered Dvor Yaroslavov (Jesus entering Jerusalem? – Author)’ (Yaroslav's Court, Yaroslavovo Dvorishche, the princely compound in the city of Novgorod – Tr.) , book 1, v.2, ch.12, columns 143-144.
A new struggle erupts between Yuri Dolgorukiy and Iziaslav Mstislavich. Many allies from the both sides are drawn into it. ‘The Prince of Suzdal (Yuri – Author) GREW TO HATE the Mstislavichi EVEN MORE… ‘Will there be the end to our civil discord?’ , book 1, v.2, ch.12, columns 156-157. V.N.Tatishev adds: ‘Yuri Vladimirovich (Dolgorukiy - Author) … often vowed to keep peace and love all the Russian princes, but soon THE SPITE INSTILLED IN HIM TOWARDS IZIASLAV AND HIS CHILDREN PROVOKED HIM TO BANISH THEM FROM THEIR MOTHERLAND … The Kievans seeing that Yuri UNRIGHTFULLY ROSE AGAINST THE CHILDREN OF IZIASLAV …’ , v.2, p.295.
Suddenly Iziaslav dies ‘to the inconsolable woe of the Kievans, all the Russians and the foreigners, Berendei and Torks. They unanimously called him their glorious Czar, the kind master, the father to his subjects … Iziaslav’s reign is described in the chronicles IN AMAZING DETAIL’ , book1, v.2, ch.12, column 160. There are no details regarding the circumstances of Iziaslav’s death reported in our chronicles.
We will remind you, that the Christian depiction of the cross is often accompanied with the inscription THE CZAR OF SLAVA (‘GLORY’ in Russian), referring specifically to Christ. See for example fig.3.1 and fig.3.2 . Thus, according to the tradition, Christ is the Czar of Slava. This expression can be interpreted in different ways. But now we begin to realise that we should understand absolutely literally: the Czar of the Slavs.
Thus, having discovered the correspondence with the New Gospel, we receive a wonderful opportunity to look at the Gospel story of the opposition between Herod and Jesus Christ in a new way. What was briefly described in just several verses in the Gospels, survived on the pages of the Russian chronicles in a much more detailed version. It is true though, that the chronicles reached us only in the tendentious Romanov version. Nevertheless, as we see, they kept many true details which shed a new, unexpected light over the Gospel stories.
A separate fragment of the Russian chronicles in the Romanov edition clearly finishes with a story about the death of Izia-Slav. Now in the place of Iziaslav (Jesus-Slava?) literally on the following pages of the chronicles appears young Andrei Bogolyubskiy. Most likely the following fragment of the combined Russian chronicles once again, for the second time returns to the story of Jesus, but this time under the name of Andrei. He emerges from the darkness and immediately takes the prominent place in the events of the following epoch. Here we come across a clear stitch in the Romanov version of history. Here the editors ‘stitched’ several separate pieces of the chronicles and there were traces of the joining remained. But before we continue to the detailed analysis of the chronicle biography of Andrei Bogolyubskiy, let us turn our attention to another popular Gospel story and demonstrate its duplicate in the Russian history of the XI-XII cc.
4. THE MASSACRE OF THE INNOCENTS ON THE ORDER OF KING HEROD DESCRIBED IN THE GOSPELS IS THE MURDER OF THE YOUNG PRINCES BORIS AND GLEB WITH THEIR YOUNG COURTIERS ON THE ORDER OF PRINCE SVIATOPOLK OKAYANNY (THE ACCURSED).
The Gospel story of the infanticide is well known. The subject matter is one of the most popular in the Mediaeval fine art and in the art in general, see fig.3.3 . We shall give a brief reminder of its salient points. Herod learns that baby Jesus is being named the King of the Jews. Fearing to lose his throne, he strives to murder Jesus. However The Holy Family flees to Egypt. Herod tries to capture Jesus and to do so he orders the execution of all the young children not only in Bethlehem, but also in its vicinity. The Gospels say: 'Then Herod … was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and SLEW ALL THE CHILDREN that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, FROM TWO YEARS OLDER AND UNDER, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men … In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not’ (Matthew 2:16, 2:18). Fig.3.4 presents one of the numerous old depictions of the massacre of the infants.
Now we shall address the Russian history. Let us try to understand exactly what kind of events provided the basis for this well known Gospel tragedy.
The true historical place-setting which we will turn to now is most likely situated in the XII century. However in the result of a hundred years chronological shift clearly presented in the Russian history, see the details in [PAP], CHRON4 and CHRON6, ch.6:2, the massacre of the infants in Russia migrated from the XII century into the XI century, following the story of Jesus Christ – Andronicus Comnenus – Andrei Bogolyubskiy.
In the Romanov version of Russian history in the beginning of the XI century there is a well-known event – the murder of the young princes Boris and Gleb. After Vladimir’s death there were left several of his sons. The older son Sviatopolk who soon got a nickname of Accursed began to murder his younger brothers.
We will remind you of the core of the story.
Allegedly in 1014 the Grand Prince Vladimir Svyatoy dies. His elder son Sviatopolk takes his father’s place in Kiev. However ‘the Kievans could not forgive Sviatopolk his devotion to the Catholicism and his revolt against his father. Prince Boris WHO HAS BARELY COME OF AGE was the GENERAL FAVOURITE OF THE KIEVANS, as well as of the late Prince Vladimir. Brought up by his mother in the Christian faith together with his beloved YOUNGER BROTHER GLEB, he since his childhood was studiously reading books, especially the Lives of the Saints’ , book.1, p.217-218.
At the time of Vladimir’s death the army of young Boris suggest that he marches upon Kiev and takes the throne instead of the elder Sviatopolk. However Boris refuses: ‘I cannot raise my hand against my older brother. Let him become like a father to me’.
Then in order to relief him from any reason for fear … Boris immediately dismissed his troops on the river Alta – Author) … and stayed alone with his servants.