Mstislav I of Kiev
Mstislav I Vladimirovich the Great (June 1, 1076, Turov – April 14, 1132, Kiev
Kiev or Kyiv is the capital and the largest city of Ukraine, located in the north central part of the country on the Dnieper River. The population as of the 2001 census was 2,611,300. However, higher numbers have been cited in the press....

) was the Grand Prince
Grand Prince
The title grand prince or great prince ranked in honour below emperor and tsar and above a sovereign prince .Grand duke is the usual and established, though not literal, translation of these terms in English and Romance languages, which do not normally use separate words for a "prince" who reigns...

 of Kiev
Kiev or Kyiv is the capital and the largest city of Ukraine, located in the north central part of the country on the Dnieper River. The population as of the 2001 census was 2,611,300. However, higher numbers have been cited in the press....

 (1125–1132), the eldest son of Vladimir II Monomakh
Vladimir II Monomakh
Vladimir II Monomakh |Basileios]]) was a Velikiy Kniaz of Kievan Rus'.- Family :He was the son of Vsevolod I and Anastasia of Byzantium Vladimir II Monomakh |Basileios]]) (1053 – May 19, 1125) was a Velikiy Kniaz (Grand Prince) of Kievan Rus'.- Family :He was the son of Vsevolod I (married in...

 by Gytha of Wessex
Gytha of Wessex
Gytha of Wessex was one of several daughters of Edith Swanneck by Harold II, the last Anglo-Saxon king of England.According to Saxo Grammaticus, two of Harold's sons and a daughter escaped to the court of their uncle, king Sweyn Estridsson of Denmark. They were treated by Sweyn with hospitality,...

. He figures prominently in the Norse Saga
Norse saga
The sagas are stories about ancient Scandinavian and Germanic history, about early Viking voyages, the battles that took place during the voyages, about migration to Iceland and of feuds between Icelandic families...

s under the name Harald
Harald or Harold is the name of several kings and lesser rulers:Kings of Denmark*Harald I of Denmark , also known as Harald Bluetooth.*Harald II of Denmark*Harald III of DenmarkKings of England...

, taken to allude to his grandfather, Harold II of England
Harold Godwinson
Harold Godwinson was the last Anglo-Saxon King of England.It could be argued that Edgar the Atheling, who was proclaimed as king by the witan but never crowned, was really the last Anglo-Saxon king...



As his father's future successor, Mstislav reigned in Novgorod the Great from 1088–93 and (after a brief stint at Rostov
Rostov is a town in Yaroslavl Oblast, Russia, one of the oldest in the country and a tourist center of the Golden Ring. It is located on the shores of Lake Nero, northeast of Moscow. Population:...

) from 1095–1117. Thereafter he was Monomakh's co-ruler in Belgorod Kievsky
Belgorod Kievsky
Bilhorod Kyivsky was a city-castle of Kievan Rus' on the right bank of Irpin River. The city was quite prominent in the 10th-12th centuries but ceased to exist after 1240 destruction of Kiev by the Mongols. Currently there is a small village of Bilohorodka, Kiev Oblast near the location of the...

, and inherited the Kievan throne after his death. He built numerous churches in Novgorod, of which St. Nicholas Cathedral (1113) and the cathedral of St Anthony Cloister (1117) survive to the present day. Later, he would also erect important churches in Kiev, notably his family sepulchre
The rock-cut tombs in ancient Israel are a group of hundreds of rock-cut tombs constructed in Israel in ancient times. They were cut into the rock, sometimes with elaborate facades and multiple burial chambers. Some are free-standing, but most are caves. Each tomb typically belonged to a...

 at Berestovo and the church of Our Lady at Podil
The Podil or Podilskyi Raion is a historic neighbourhood and an administrative raion in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. It is one of the oldest neighborhoods of Kiev, the birthplace of the city's trade, commerce and industry...

Mstislav's life was spent in constant warfare with Cumans
The Cumans were Turkic nomadic people comprising the western branch of the Cuman-Kipchak confederation. After Mongol invasion , they decided to seek asylum in Hungary, and subsequently to Bulgaria...

 (1093, 1107, 1111, 1129), Estonia
Estonia , officially the Republic of Estonia , is a state in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. It is bordered to the north by the Gulf of Finland, to the west by the Baltic Sea, to the south by Latvia , and to the east by Lake Peipsi and the Russian Federation . Across the Baltic Sea lies...

ns (1111, 1113, 1116, 1130), Lithuania
Lithuania , officially the Republic of Lithuania is a country in Northern Europe, the biggest of the three Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, whereby to the west lie Sweden and Denmark...

ns (1131), and the princedom of Polotsk (1127, 1129). In 1096, he defeated his uncle Oleg of Chernigov on the Koloksha River, thereby laying foundation for the centuries of enmity between his and Oleg's descendants. Mstislav was the last ruler of united Rus
Kievan Rus'
Kievan Rus was a medieval polity in Eastern Europe, from the late 9th to the mid 13th century, when it disintegrated under the pressure of the Mongol invasion of 1237–1240....

, and upon his death, as the chronicler put it, "the land of Rus was torn apart".

In 1095, Mstislav wed Princess Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden
Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden
Princess Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden was a Swedish princess and, by marriage, a princess of Veliky Novgorod, Rostov and Belgorod, spouse of Grand Prince Mstislav I of Kiev....

, daughter of King Inge I of Sweden
Inge I of Sweden
Inge the Elder was a King of Sweden.-Biography:Inge was the son of the former King Stenkil and a Swedish princess. Inge shared the rule of the kingdom with his probably elder brother Halsten Stenkilsson, but little is known with certainty of Inge's reign...

. They had many children:
  1. Ingeborg of Kiev
    Ingeborg of Kiev
    Ingeborg Mstislavna of Kiev was a Russian princess, married to the Danish prince Canute Lavard of Jutland.She was the daughter of grand prince Mstislav I of Kiev and Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden and was in about 1116 married to Canute in a marriage arranged by her maternal aunt, the Danish...

    , married Canute Lavard
    Canute Lavard
    Canute Lavard was a Danish prince. Later he was the first Duke of Schleswig and the first border prince who was both a Danish and a German vassal, a position leafing towards the historical double position of Southern Jutland...

     of Jutland
    Schleswig or South Jutland is a region covering the area about 60 km north and 70 km south of the border between Germany and Denmark; the territory has been divided between the two countries since 1920, with Northern Schleswig in Denmark and Southern Schleswig in Germany...

    , and was mother to Valdemar I of Denmark
    Valdemar I of Denmark
    Valdemar I of Denmark , also known as Valdemar the Great, was King of Denmark from 1157 until 1182.-Biography:...

  2. Malmfred
    Malmfred of Kiev , was a Russian princess and a medieval Norwegian and Danish queen consort, wife first to King Sigurd I of Norway and second to king Eric II of Denmark....

    , married (1) Sigurd I of Norway
    Sigurd I of Norway
    Sigurd I Magnusson , also known as Sigurd the Crusader , was King of Norway from 1103 to 1130. His rule, together with his brother Eystein I of Norway , has been regarded by historians as a golden age for the medieval Kingdom of Norway...

    ; (2) Eric II of Denmark
    Eric II of Denmark
    Eric II the Memorable was king of Denmark between 1134 and 1137. Eric was an illegitimate son of Eric I of Denmark, who ruled Denmark from 1095 to 1103. Eric the Memorable rebelled against his uncle Niels of Denmark, and was declared king in 1134. He punished his adversaries severely, and...

  3. Eupraxia, married Alexius Comnenus, son of John II Comnenus
  4. Vsevolod of Novgorod and Pskov
  5. Maria, married Vsevolod II of Kiev
    Vsevolod II of Kiev
    Vsevolod II Olgovich was the Prince of Chernigov and Grand Prince of Kiev , son of Oleg Svyatoslavich, Prince of Chernigov....

  6. Iziaslav II of Kiev
    Iziaslav II of Kiev
    Iziaslav II Mstislavich , Prince of Pereyaslav , Prince of Turov , Prince of Rostov , Prince of Vladimir and Volyn , Pereyaslavl , Velikiy Kniaz of Kiev , was the oldest son of Mstislav Vladimirovich, Kniaz' , and...

  7. Rostislav of Kiev
    Rostislav I of Kiev
    Rostislav Mstislavich , Kniaz' of Smolensk , Novgorod and Velikiy Kniaz of Kiev . He was the son of Mstislav I of Kiev and Christina Ingesdotter of Sweden....

  8. Sviatopolk of Pskov
  9. Rogneda, married Yaroslav of Volinya
  10. Xenia, married Briachislav of Izyaslawl

Christine died on January 18, 1122; later that year Mstislav married again, to Liubava Dmitrievna, the daughter of Dmitry Zavidich, a nobleman of Novgorod. Their children were:
  1. Vladimir III Mstislavich (1132–1171)
  2. Euphrosyne of Kiev
    Euphrosyne of Kiev
    Euphrosyne of Kiev was Queen consort of Hungary.Euphrosyne was the first daughter of Grand Prince Mstislav I of Kiev and his second wife, Liubava Dmitrievna...

    , (c. 1130 – c. 1193) married King Géza II of Hungary
    Géza II of Hungary
    Géza II , , King of Hungary, King of Croatia, Dalmatia and Rama . He ascended the throne as a child and during his minority the kingdom was governed by his mother and uncle...

     in 1146

Through Euphrosyne, Mstislav is an ancestor of King Edward III of England
Edward III of England
Edward III was King of England from 1327 until his death and is noted for his military success. Restoring royal authority after the disastrous reign of his father, Edward II, Edward III went on to transform the Kingdom of England into one of the most formidable military powers in Europe...

 and hence of all subsequent English and British monarchs. Through his mother Gytha, he is part of a link between Harold II of England and the modern line of English kings founded by William the Conqueror
William I of England
William I , also known as William the Conqueror , was the first Norman King of England from Christmas 1066 until his death. He was also Duke of Normandy from 3 July 1035 until his death, under the name William II...

, who deposed him.


See also

External links

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