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HOUSE OF YAROSLAVL (ROSTISLAVICHI)

 
  {short description of image} bio of Mikhail Fedorovich bi oof Mikhail Davidovich bio of Vasilii Davidovich bio of David Fedorovich bio of Vasilii Vsyevolodovich bio of Rostislav Mstislavich bio of Fedor Rostislavich geneology chart of Mikhail Davidovich geneology chart of Roman Vasil'yevich Grozni geneology chart of Gleb Vasil'yevich Grozni geneology of Vasilii Vasil'yevich Grozni  
 

Please place your cursor over the individual names to see which are linked to descriptions and charts. This chart continues the elaboration of the houses of the princes of Yaroslavl. For anticedents in the house of Rostov please see chart.
Yaroslavl is one of the more ancient of Russian cities founded by Yaroslav the Wise around 1010. Archeological evidence shows the area was inhabited at least from the 8th century and was an important trade and artisan settlement by Finno-Ugric tribes. Then Yaroslav arrived and wiped out the existing settlements in order to build his key post on the northern reach of the Volga. Yaroslavl occupies a beautiful, commanding position on a high ridge dominating the right bank fo the Volga at the mouth of the Kostrol river. (We have extensive photography of the city in the web site section on Russian cities.) This river flows north from the key agricultural region around Rostov. Thus Yaroslavl is at a strategic location both to portect Rostov from the north and to control trade traffic on the Volga. It also is in a good position from which to exert influence into the far northern area of European Russia. From this beginning Yaroslavl was directly connected with Kyivan Rus. Most likely it was governed by a namestnik (lieutentant) sent from Kyiv. In the middle 11th century it came into the control of the Rostov territorial princes. At that time the town did not have an independent government but was still controled by deputies, now sent from Rostov. Then it was part of the united grand principality of Vladimir.
Only in 1207 was it separated as a 'votchina' as Vsyevolod Bolshoi Gnezdo provided appanages for his sons. Yaroslavl fell to the lot of Konstantin Vsyevolodovich. (See chart) He gave it to his son, Vsyevolod Konstantinovich in 1218. He was the first actual appanage prince of the Yaroslavl principality. At this point the principality contained a very large territory on both banks of the Volga and its tributaries, the Ukhota, Mologa, Sutka, Cheremkha, Pazha, Kurbitsa, Kotorosl, and it included lands on the lower reaches of the Sheksna and Inopasha. Already the town was a major port for transport along the Volga and also a center of artisan crafts. In February 1238 the town was taken by the Mongols. Vsyevolod Konstantinovich died in the battle at the Siti River on 4 March. It then passed to his son, Vasilii Vsyevolodovich. But this family dynasty died out.
In a unique occurance, the group of Valdimir princes decided that rule of the principality should go to the betrothed groom of Vasilii's daughter, Maria Vasil'eyvna Yaroslavskaya, who was Fedor Rostislavich Cherni, younger son of the powerful ruler of Smolensk. Then, unexpectedly, in 1278, on the death of his father at the Horde, Fedor received also Smolensk. But he could not continue to rule two so separated principalities. Apparently it was about this time that Fedor's first wife, Maria, because of whom he had received the right to Yaroslavl, died and he married a daughter of the powerful Mongol prince and general, Nogai. At the start of the 14th century there were anti-Tatar uprisings throughout northeast Rus, including Yaroslavl. This principality began to decline. Mikhail and Konstantin Fedorovich died without heirs. The entire votchina of Yaroslavl passed to David Fedorovich, whose mother was the Mongol princess, Anna, daughter of the famous warrior general, Nogai. David divided it for his sons, giving Vasilii Grozni the main region around Yaroslavl and Mikhail the north-western region with capital at Mologa. This soon formed a separate principality. We follow the family on David's side with separate charts for each of his three grandsons, Vasilii, Gleb and Roman. On Mikhail's side the family held together around Mologa sufficiently so one diagram will show all the princes.
About 1321 prince David Fedorovich began to divide his votchina amongst his sons. He gave his youngest son, Mikhail, Mologa, which from then on in practice gained its independence from Yaroslavl. About this time the principality also came into the interests of the Muscovite princes who started interfering with internal affairs. In 1332 Ivan I Kalita obtained the khan's order and brought a Tatar army to storm Yaroslavl and burn it. A few years later Ivan I married the Yaroslavl prince, Vasilii Davidovich Groznii to his own daughter, Yevdokia and became in practice the real khozain of the city.
Vasilii Davidovich tried to regain freedom from Moscow by entering into alliance with Tver and Beloozero, but under Ivan I's orders was required by the Khan to cease anti-Muscovite politics. From then on Yaroslavl was a subordinate ally of Moscow, although retaining its princes. It sent its troops to support Muscovite military campaigns. After the death of Ivan I in 1345, Moscow interfered in Yaroslavl all the more. Although beginning with Vasilii Davidovich the ruling prince of the house at Yaroslavl began to use the title "grand prince", in actuality he was subordinate to Moscow. The internal social situation in Yaroslavl and the relationship with the Tatars also enabled Moscow to strengthen its control over Yaroslavl. In the second quarter of the 15th century
In 1463 Ivan III required the Yaroslavl prince, Aleksandr Fedorovich Brukhatii, to sign an aggrement on the future fransfer of Yaroslavl to Moscow and from then on Moscow sent its namenstniks to govern.

 
     

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