The Kievan Rus’ were once a formidable power, but that strength shifted away from Kiev in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. The reasons for this shift were numerous, and the power structures which came in Kiev’s place were also varied.
Indeed, according to A History of Russia to 1855, “there is considerable controversy about the precise nature of these factors [related to the decline and fall of Kiev] and no consensus concerning their relative weight” (Riasanovsky and Steinberg 36).… Read the rest here
As Kievan Rus’ became less and less centralized, individual principalities rose in its place as the chief governing bodies in the land. These were much more independent of one another, and largely stayed more personal. While this movement was occurring on the own accord of the princes, the pace was changed drastically as the hordes of Mongols began to go West. While making it difficult for princes to stay sovereign, a large proportion of inhabitant of Rus’ felt the inclusion of Rus’ into the Mongol Yoke certainly had some benefits.… Read the rest here
The Pravda Russkaia, or the law code of Kievan Rus’, has a very interesting and unique mixture of possible offenses and punishments, some of which are logical, while others are not. For example, Point 9 states that “If someone unsheathes a sword, but does not strike anyone,then he pays 1 grivna.” This offense is somewhat similar to laws about carrying a weapon with out a permit. Another example is point 12, which states that “if someone rides on someone else’s horse, not having asked him for permission, then he is to provide three grivnas.” This law is similar to that of auto theft. … Read the rest here
It seems like the Kievan Rus’ empire just dissolved under unfavorable circumstances. The general population became dissatisfied with their Grand Prince in Novgorod, and the Mongols’ invasion of the region further extinguished the flame of Rus’ society. Kievan Rus’ again proved to be highly religious in its political endeavors, and although a split between Prince Ivan and his people occurred – it arguably proved to be a step in the right direction for Rus’ society. Even Kaiser and Marker argue that the kingdom of Rus’ deserved the pummeling it received by the Mongols as punishment for the careless and selfish princes who ignored the wise words of Iaroslav (100).… Read the rest here
From the tenth to thirteenth centuries Kievan Rus’ economy was largely believed to be based on agriculture. There is very little written evidence to support this, however due to the physical evidence of tools such as iron blades and plows, archeologists and historians have determined that agriculture, trade and farming held major importance in society. However, there is still little evidence to support the theories of whether or not Kievan Rus’ was a commercial society located mainly in towns or if they were an agricultural society that used towns for marketplaces.… Read the rest here
Much of early Russian history has been contested and debated by historians for years. Unfortunately, the information historians can glean about this civilization is confined to the sources and artifacts available. Learning about the Kievan economy is no exception to these limitations. However, a lot of information about this group can be derived from both primary sources and archeological information.
At the base of the Kievan economy was the idea of tribute. This was the driving force behind the exchanging of goods from all over the area. … Read the rest here
The period between the 10th and the 13th century was a period of economic prosperity for the Rus’. This can be proven by the study of the remains of both agricultural tools and proofs of an extensive trade of Amber. The location of Rus’ was, of course, propitious to the development of the economy: the Dniepr for example offered the Rus’ a perfect trade route.
The remains of agricultural tools prove that the Rus’ had a capacity to adapt to their environment but also that they also were able to optimize their work, as seen in the North by the evolution of the technique from Slash-and-Burn to a technique based on light plowing.… Read the rest here