A Brief History
On June 11, 980, Vladimir the Great was proclaimed the ruler of all Kievan Rus’, having consolidated an empire consisting of the lands from what is now Ukraine in the East to the Baltic Sea in the West, the White Sea in the North, and to the Black Sea in the South.
Called the Kievan Realm, the people comprising this vast country included what are now Ukrainians, Russians, Belarusians, Nordic, and Finnic people along with other Slavic people. As the name implies, the capital of these people was located in Kyiv.
Vladimir, bearing the titles of Grand Prince of Kiev and Prince of Novgorod, secured his victories over the Turkic people from the East and in turn spread Christianity through his realm, having converted personally in 988. He ruled the Kievan Rus’ from 980 until his death in 1015.
Question for students (and subscribers): Did you know that Russia and Ukraine both started in Kyiv? Please let us know in the comments section below this article.
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For more information, please see…
Plokhy, Serhii. The Origins of the Slavic Nations: Premodern Identities in Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus. Cambridge University Press, 2010.
Volkoff, Vladimir. Vladimir the Russian Viking: The Legendary Prince Who Transformed a Nation. Overlook Books, 2011.
The featured image in this article, Volodymyr the Great portrait on obverse of ₴1 bill, circa 2006, is in the public domain within Ukraine and possibly in other jurisdictions because it is one of the following:
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