Rus Articles Journal

What is known of the princess Olga Kiyevskaya?

Stories are known names of the few women who are in power. But in those days, when there lived the princess Olga, it was almost impossible: men operated the world. However the princess became the real ruler of Ancient Russia during the period, very important for the country, and received canonization as the Saint grand duchess Olga equal to the apostles.

In those days when there lived the princess Olga, the woman could almost not dominate: men operated the world. Laws of life, more precisely - survivals, were cruel, all foreign policy eventually was reduced to the military conflicts where the leading role was assigned to men.

But at will of destiny in due time and in the right place extraordinary people are born. The princess Olga Kiyevskaya just from such people. It could operate the state very young still, extremely needing targeting of an internal order. Skillfully balancing among strong and severe men, the princess proved to be the good diplomat and the manager.

A turn of the first millennium in the history of Russia - the period which is a little studied because of small quantity of documentary sources. Late certificates on the princess Olga theoretically quite can be called into question as are written after her death. And today it is written much, however - almost same, only in different options of retelling. Generally all articles about the princess begin with the beautiful fairy tale about acquaintance to the prince Igor and come to an end with the detailed description of revenge of Olga to Drevlyans for murder of the husband. Too long ago it was and most likely nothing we learn new.

There are several versions of an origin of the princess Olga. According to the Story of Temporary years (12th century) future ruler was born in Pleskov`s (Pskov) vicinities, in the village of Vybuta, approximately at the end of the 9th century. Exact date of birth is not established, is considered to be as year of birth of Olga 890.

There is an assumption that it from a noble izborsky family of a posadnik of Gostomysl. It is confirmed by the Ioakimovsky chronicle (the beginning of the 11th century) which is closest on time to the period of life of the princess therefore it could apply for some reliability if in itself was not a disputable source. Also there is an opinion on the Bulgarian origin of Olga from - for accords of names of the cities of Pleskov and Plisk, the capital of Bulgaria which was at that time.

But there is also a version about its simple origin, literally - from the people. Otherwise, the romantic legend of acquaintance of Olga and the prince Igor - her future husband loses meaning., It seems, Igor, being on hunting, it wanted to be transported on other coast and called up the boatman who was a young girl (Olga). It was pleasant to the prince, and he wanted to satisfy right there the sudden desire, but Olga could appeal clever speeches to honor of the man and stop violence.

When came it is time to marry, Igor rejected all pretenders and remembered “marvelous in maidens“, sent behind it and married. It is no wonder that he remembered it: it is unlikely at least once someone dared to refuse life to the prince and is so dexterous that he also did not understand how it happened. Then nobody stood on ceremony with women and if some all - forced itself to respect - such will forget.

There is one more version of an origin of the princess Olga - Norman. As if she is from Varangians, it is possible - Oleg Veshchego the daughter (the relative, the pupil). On it the name pushes: Oleg - conformably Varangian Helge, respectively, Olga - Helge (Volga). And, it seems, Oleg planned this marriage long ago. But then why to it to hide the daughter? From intriguers? It is unlikely: the authorities and influences and at Oleg was enough - could preserve a family.

However, logically arguing, it can be so. Probably, Oleg had no son, otherwise hardly Igor would get the power. At the time of Rurik`s death Igor was a little boy, and Oleg for whom it is possible to get rid of the successor governed actually.

Only why if there is no son? And if there is a daughter, then it is possible to bring up her in the right direction and to marry to Igor. Then all undertakings of the prince - the Varangian will not go to waste. This version is spoken well also by the fact that very quickly and reasonably the princess ran all business as though always knew how to do it. The politician Olga was to a consistent policy of Oleg. It increased lands, she - strengthened, brought order.

Under similar reasonings also the version about its relationship with Gostomysl`s family approaches. In total - in such family an education can be got good and education corresponding. And on a crossing Olga could appear accidentally, but - is not casual at all. Perhaps, there was also no acquaintance on the small river, just gave the girl for the prince - and all.

Really from where at simple illiterate maiden (if to trust in a simple origin of the princess) such intellectual data, such will, to become princely, ability to behave and give? And for several years not to learn it and who would begin to learn all this the newly appeared princess (perhaps, and not the only wife) from which it is required only by a female half to direct and to the prince to give rise and grow up the successor to adolescence, and there all the same he will pass to a man`s half to military business to study. It was so accepted.

And if someone taught Olga, then who? Why to them to potter with the woman if there is a father - the prince? Unprecedented business. A conclusion arises that Olga already to everything taught arrived under a wreath. And as well as from where it arrived, about it, as they say, there is no mention.

Anyway, but the princess Olga Kiyevskaya quickly, strong and with skill undertook the public and administrative affairs - it is the fact which is difficult for disproving. And during lifetime of the husband - he willingly shifted to it boring administrative duties, having reserved hobbies - hunting and collecting a tribute.

An arbitrariness of princely people generated chaos in even the young, not strengthened state. Reached murder of the prince Igor. And with it it was necessary to do something. Having furiously revenged Drevlyans for murder of the husband, Olga got down to business with truly state scope. It was necessary to transfer to the son Svyatoslav strong and rich inheritance. The princess was widowed all life, without having got married repeatedly, but it not for the love of the husband at all. Olga lived for the sake of Svyatoslav`s wellbeing and the country. And achieved much.

The wise princess divided the country into peculiar administrative educations which coped tiunam. Defined the so-called churchyards which became the center of collecting a tribute. She was not lazy and went over the country much, wishing to track performance of its orders personally.

Olga entered and established the fixed tax, the first in the history of Russia. People knew now how many they have to, in advance and could not be afraid any more that, having fleeced them, they the prince with a team will be in few weeks behind an additive, and against them will make nothing. Olga encouraged trade, laid the foundation to stone town planning.

And let to a general order it was still far, however it is big break, actually - the first steps to formation of the real feudal state with the internal territorial division and laws.

From all princely wives of the period of Ancient Russia one Olga was remembered stories as the independent and self-sufficient personality, but not addition to the husband, as other princesses. It on an equal basis with princes was mentioned in chronicles. And today she is canonized as Sacred equal to the apostles Russian Orthodox Church, the grand duchess Olga Kiyevskaya.

It is not casual too. In many respects exactly thanks to Olga Russia became orthodox. Only she could dare to try to change religion - paganism - for Christianity as for a long time by that moment strong held all reins of government in hand and was able to afford a lot of things.

Even the son Svyatoslav who grew up the inveterate pagan did not begin mother to forbid anything. But also did not want to support. Christianity - a way of humility, and such way not for it - this furious person lived, breathed war. Svyatoslav grew up among soldiers, since the childhood went to fight. However, Olga herself was with strong character and brought up the son same entrusted it to the betrayed and knowing people, more precisely. Otherwise, grown coddled, not knowing difficulties the son could not hold the power in the hands.

Krestivshis if to trust chronicles, in Constantinople, the princess intended to extend in the homeland Christianity, but pagans wanted to hear nothing. To betray belief of ancestors to nobody and came to mind. However slowly but surely, ranks of Christians were joined. Being exposed to sneers, sometimes - to persecutions and riots, people did not renounce faith in Christ. Olga`s grandson - the prince Vladimir, an imperative measure christening all citizens finished business.

Buried the princess Olga in 969 on a Christian ceremony - Svyatoslav could not refuse it to mother whom deeply respected, loved also which too much was obliged.