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He was the second son of Konstantin Vasil'yevich, appanage prince of Suzdal and his second wife, Yelyena. Dmitri Konstantinovich was appanage prince of Suzdal (ca 1355), grand prince of Vladimir (1360-62) or (59-63); and grand prince of Nizhigorod (1364-83). He married Vasilia or Anna (unknown parentage). His sons were Vasilii Kirdyapa, appanage prince of Gorodets; Ivan, crown prince of Suzdal, who died without heirs; Semyon, appanage prince of Suzdal. Vasilii Kirdyapa began the Shuiski family that played such a prominent role as boyars during the reigns of Vasilii III and Ivan IV and then placed Vasilii Shuiski on the throne of Moscow. Semyeon began the cadet branch of the Shuiskii family whose members fought Moscow unsuccessfully. His daughters were Evdokia and Maria. Evdokia married Dmitri Ivanovich Donskoi of Moscow. Maria married the boyar, Nikolai Vasil'yevich Vel'yaminov. The family is shown on this chart.

Initially he fought against Dmitrii Ivanovich Donskoi for the title of Grand Prince of Vladimir. He held the title between 1360 and 1363, while Dmitrii Ivanovich was a teenager. He attempted to promote the interests of Nizhgorod but was eventually blocked from regaining power as grand prince of Vladimir by Dmitrii Donskoi. When his brother, Boris Konstantinovich, began to oppose him and claim the titles, Dmitrii Konstantinovich was forced to ally himself with Dmitrii Ivanovich and give his daughter, Evdokia, to him in marriage in 1366. The two Dmitrii's then campaigned together to expand Russian control eastward into the lands of the Mordvinians and Volga Bolgars. His troops were defeated along with the Muscovite contingents by the Tatars in the battle on the P'iana River in 1377. He began conversion of the kremlin in Nizhnii Novgorod to stone in 1372. Dmitrii Konstantinovich attempted to supplant Moscow in favor with the Tatars in 1382 by sending his sons to serve Toqtamish and assisting the Khan in capturing Moscow.


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