World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Kingdom of Rus'

Article Id: WHEBN0023734845
Reproduction Date:

Title: Kingdom of Rus'  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Öz Beg Khan, Rus
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Kingdom of Rus'

"Kingdom of Rus'" redirects here. For Tsardom of Rus', see Tsardom of Russia. For other uses, see Galich (disambiguation).
Галицько-Волинське королівство
Vassal of Kingdom of Hungary (1214-1232)

Flag Coat of arms
The Galician–Volhynian Kingdom in the 13th–14th centuries
Capital Volodymyr, Halych, Lviv
Languages Old East Slavic
Religion Eastern Orthodox Christianity
Government Monarchy
Prince later King
 -  1199–1205 Roman the Great
 -  1211—1264 Daniel of Galicia
 -  1293—1301 Lev I of Galicia
 -  1301—1308 Yuri I of Galicia
 -  1308—1323 Andrew of Galicia and
Lev II of Galicia
 -  1323—1340 Yuri II
 -  1340—1349 Lubart-Dmitry Giedyminowicz
Historical era Middle Ages
 -  Established 1199
 -  Disestablished 1349

The Principality of Galicia–Volhynia[1] or Kingdom of Rus' (Latin: Regnum Galiciae et Lodomeriae, Regnum Russiae) was a Ruthenian (Ukrainian) state in the regions of Galicia and Volhynia that was formed after the conquest of Galicia by the Prince of Volhynia Roman the Great with the help of Leszek the White. Roman the Great united the principalities of Halych (Galicia) and Volhynia in a union which existed during the years 1199–1349. Along with Novgorod and Vladimir-Suzdal, it was one of the three most important powers to emerge from the collapse of Kievan Rus'.

After the enormous destruction wreaked by the Mongol invasion of Kievan Rus' in 1239–41, the King of Rus' Danylo Romanovych was forced to pledge allegiance to Batu Khan of the Golden Horde in 1246. He strove, however, to rid his realm of the Mongol yoke by attempting, unsuccessfully, to establish military alliances with other European rulers.[2] The Polish conquest of the kingdom in 1349 ended its vassalage to the Golden Horde.[3]

Western Galicia–Volhynia extended between the rivers San and Wieprz in what is now south-eastern Poland, while eastern territories covered the Pripet Marshes (now in Belarus) and upper Southern Bug in modern-day Ukraine. During its time, the kingdom was bordered by Black Rus', the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the Principality of Turov-Pinsk, the Principality of Kiev, the Golden Horde, the Kingdom of Hungary, the Kingdom of Poland, the Principality of Moldova, and the Monastic State of the Teutonic Knights.


Tribal area

In pre-Roman times the region was populated by various tribes, including the Lugii, Goths and Vandals (which may correspond to the Przeworsk and Puchov cultures in archaeology). After the fall of the Roman Empire, the area was populated by West Slav people, identified with a group called Lendians. Around 833 the West Slavs became part of the Great Moravian state. Upon the invasion of the Hungarian tribes into the heart of the Great Moravian Empire around 899, the Lendians of the area found themselves under the influence of the Hungarian Empire. The whole area was inhabited by White Croats,and land name was White Croatia,capital of Duchy was Stilsko. In 955 their area seems to have constituted part of the Bohemian State. Around 970 it was included in the Polish state. This area was mentioned in 981 (by Nestor), when Vladimir the Great of Kievan Rus' took the area over on his way into Poland. He founded the city of Vladimir (Volynski) and later Christianized the locals. The area returned to Poland in 1018 and in 1031 was retaken by Rus'.

The territory was settled by the East Slavs from the early middle ages and, in the 12th century, the Rurikid Principality of Halych was formed there by descendants of Vladimir, merged at the end of the 12th century with the neighboring Principality of Volhynia into the principality of Galicia–Volhynia which existed for a century and a half.

Rise and apogee

Volhynia and Galicia had originally been two separate Rurikid principalities, assigned on a rotating basis to younger members of the Kievan dynasty. The line preceding Roman had held the principality of Volhynia whereas another line, that of Yaroslav Osmomysl held the Principality of Halych (later adopted as Galicia). Galicia–Volhynia was created following the death, in 1198[4] or 1199[5] (and without a recognized heir in the paternal line), of the last Prince of Galicia, Vladimir II Yaroslavich; Prince Roman the Great of Vladimir-in-Volhynia (modern Volodymyr-Volynskyi) thereafter acquired the Principality of Galicia, uniting both lands into one state. Roman's successors would mostly use Halych (Galicia) as the designation of their combined kingdom. In Roman's time Galicia–Volhynia's principal cities were Halych and Volodymyr-in-Volhynia. In 1204 he captured Kiev. Roman was allied with Poland, signed a peace treaty with Hungary and developed diplomatic relations with the Byzantine Empire. At the height of his reign he briefly became the most powerful of the Rus' princes.[6]

In 1205 Roman turned against his Polish allies which led to a conflict with Leszek the White and Konrad of Masovia. Roman was subsequently killed in the Battle of Zawichost (1205) and his dominion entered a period of rebellion and chaos. Thus weakened, Galicia–Volhynia became an arena of rivalry between Poland and Hungary. King Andrew II of Hungary styled himself rex Galiciæ et Lodomeriæ, Latin for "king of Galicia and Vladimir [in-Volhynia]", a title that later was adopted in the Habsburg Empire. In a compromise agreement made in 1214 between Hungary and Poland, the throne of Galicia–Volhynia was given to Andrew's son, Coloman of Lodomeria who had married Leszek the White's daughter, Salomea.

In 1221, Mstislav Mstislavich, son of Mstislav Rostislavich, liberated Galicia–Volhynia from the Hungarians, but it was Daniil Romanovich (Daniel I of Galicia or Daniel Romanovych or Danylo Halytskyi), son of Roman, who re-united all of south-western Rus', including Volhynia, Galicia and Rus' ancient capital of Kiev, which Danylo captured in 1239. Danylo defeated the Polish and Hungarian forces in the battle of Yaroslav (Jarosław) and crushed their ally Rostislav Mikhailovich, son of the prince of Chernigov, in 1245. He also strengthened his relations with Batu Khan by traveling to his capital Saray (Sarai) and acknowledging, at least nominally, the supremacy of the Mongol Golden Horde. After meeting with Batu Khan, Danylo reorganized his army along Mongol lines and equipped it with Mongolian weapons although Danylo himself maintained the traditional attire of a Rus' prince. Danylo's alliance with the Mongols was merely tactical, because he pursued a long-term strategy resistance against the Mongols.[7]

In 1245, Pope Innocent IV allowed Danylo to be crowned king. Danylo wanted more than recognition, commenting bitterly that he expected an army when he received the crown.[8] Although Danylo promised to promote recognition of the Pope to his people, his realm continued to be ecclesiastically independent from Rome. Thus, Danylo was the only member of the Rurik dynasty to have been crowned king. Danylo was crowned by the papal archbishop in Dorohychyn 1253 as the first King of all Rus' (Rex Russiae; 1253–1264). In 1256 Danylo succeeded in driving the Mongols out of Volhynia, and a year later defeated their attempts to capture the cities of Lutsk and Volodymyr-Volynskyi.[7] However with the approach of a large army under the Mongolian general Boroldai in 1260 Danylo was forced to accept their authority over him and to raze the fortifications he had built against them.[9]

Under Danylo's reign, Galicia–Volhynia was one of the most powerful states in east central Europe.[9] Literature flourished, producing the Galician–Volhynian Chronicle. Demographic growth was enhanced by immigration from the west and the south, including Germans and Armenians. Commerce developed due to trade routes linking the Black Sea with Poland, Germany and the Baltic basin. Major cities, which served as important economic and cultural centers, included Lvov (where the royal seat would later be moved by Danylo's son), Vladimir-in-Volhynia, Galich, Kholm (Danylo's capital), Peremyshl, Drohiczyn and Terebovlya. Galicia–Volhynia was important enough that in 1252 Danylo was able to marry his son Roman to the heiress of the Austrian Duchy in the vain hope of securing it for his family. Another son, Shvarn, married a daughter of Mindaugas, Lithuania's first king, and briefly ruled that land from 1267–1269. At the peak of its expansion, the Galician–Volhynian state contained not only south-western Rus' lands, including Red Rus' and Black Rus', but also briefly controlled the Brodnici on the Black Sea.

After Danylo's death in 1264, he was succeeded by his son Lev. Lev moved the capital to Lviv in 1272 and for a time maintained the strength of Galicia–Volhynia. Unlike his father, who pursued a Western political course, Lev worked closely with the Mongols, in particular cultivating a close alliance with the Tatar Khan Nogai. Together with his Mongol allies, he invaded Poland. However, although his troops plundered territory as far west as Racibórz, sending many captives and much booty back to Galicia, Lev did not ultimately gain much territory from Poland. Lev also attempted, unsuccessfully, to establish his family's rule over Lithuania. Soon after his brother Shvarno ascended to the Lithuanians throne in 1267, he had the former Lithuanian ruler Vaišvilkas killed. Following Shvarn's loss of the throne in 1269, Lev entered into conflict with the Lithuania. From 1274–1276 he fought a war with the new Lithuanian ruler Traidenis but was defeated, and Lithuania annexed the territory of Black Ruthenia with its city of Navahrudak. In 1279, Lev allied himself with king Wenceslaus II of Bohemia and invaded Poland, although his attempt to capture Kraków in 1280 ended in failure. That same year, Lev defeated Hungary and annexed part of Transcarpathia, including the city of Mukachevo. In 1292 he defeated Poland and added Lublin with surrounding areas to the territory of Galicia–Volhynia.

Decline and fall

After Lev's death in 1301, a period of decline ensued. Lev was succeeded by his son Yuri I who ruled for only seven years. Although his reign was largely peaceful and Galicia–Volhynia flourished economically, Yuri I lost Lublin to the Poles (1302) and Transcarpathia to the Hungarians. From 1308 until 1323 Galicia–Volhynia was jointly ruled by Yuri I's sons Andrew and Lev II, who proclaimed themselves to be the kings of Galicia and Volhynia. The brothers forged alliances with King Władysław I of Poland and with the Teutonic Knights against the Lithuanians and the Mongols. But the Kingdom was still tributary to the Mongols and joined the Mongol military expeditions of Uzbek Khan and his successor, Janibek Khan.[3] They died together in 1323, in battle, fighting against the Mongols, and left no heirs.

After the extinction of the Rurikid dynasty in Galicia–Volhynia in 1323, Volhynia passed into the control of the Lithuanian prince Liubartas, while the boyars took control over Galicia. They invited the Polish Prince Boleslaw Yuri II, a grandson of Yuri I, to assume the Galician throne. Boleslaw converted to Orthodoxy and assumed the name Yuri II. Nevertheless, suspecting him of harboring Catholic feelings, the boyars poisoned him in 1340 and elected one of their own, Dmitry Detko, to lead the Galician state. In Winter 1341 Tatars, Ruthenians led by Detko, and Lithuanians led by Liubartas, were able to defeat Poles, although they were not so successful in Summer 1341. Finally, Detko was forced to accept Polish overlordship, as a starost of Halych. After Detko's death, Poland's King Casimir III mounted a successful invasion, capturing and annexing Galicia in 1349. Galicia–Volhynia ceased to exist as an independent state.

Danylo's dynasty attempted to gain support from Pope Benedict XII and broader European powers for an alliance against the Mongols, but ultimately proved unable of competing with the rising powers of centralised Grand Duchy of Lithuania and The Kingdom of Poland. Only in 1349, after the occupation of Galicia–Volhynia by an allied Polish-Hungarian force, the Kingdom of Galicia–Volhynia was finally conquered and incorporated in Poland. This act put an end to the relationship of vassalage between Galicia–Volhynia Rus' and the Golden Horde.[10]


From 1340 to 1392 the civil war in the region transitioned into a power struggle between Lithuania, Poland, and Hungary. The first stage of conflict saw signing of the 1344 treaty which secured the Principality of Peremyshl after the Crown of Poland, while the rest belonged to a member of Gediminis family, Liubartas. Eventually by the mid 14th century, the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania divided up the region between them: King Kazimierz III Wielki took Galicia and Western Volhynia, while the sister state of Eastern Volhynia together with Kiev came under Lithuanian control, 1352–1366.

Since 1352 when the kingdom was eventually divided between the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, most of the Ruthenian Voivodeship belonged to the Crown of the Polish Kingdom where it remained also after the Union of Lublin between Poland and Lithuania. The present-day town of Halych is situated 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) away from the ancient capital of Galicia, on the spot where the old town's river port was located and where King Liubartas of Galicia–Volhynia constructed a wooden castle in 1367.

By the treaty of the Lublin Union of 1569, all of the former principality of Galicia–Volhynia became part of Poland. In 1772, Empress Maria Theresa of Austria (who was also Queen of Hungary) recalled the old Hungarian claims to the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria (Regnum Galiciæ et Lodomeriæ), and used them to justify Austria's participation in the partitions of Poland.


  • Principality of Halych
    • Principality of Peremyshl
    • Principality of Zvenyhorod
    • Principality of Trebovlia
  • Principality of Volhynia
    • Principality of Lutsk
    • Principality of Dorohobuzh
    • Principality of Peresopnytsia
  • Principality of Belz
  • Land of Chelm (Lublin 1289–1302)
  • Land of Berestia


  • Principality of Kiev (1230–1240)
  • Principality of Turow (1230s)
  • Black Ruthenia (1251–1276)
  • Zakarpattia (1280–1320)
Halych-Volyn in
mid-13th century
Annexations by
Other Ruthenian
Kingdom of
Borders of lands
and regional
Main trade
Borders of
"Capital cities"
Minsk Principality
Halych Principality




Historical Role

The Galician-Volhynian Chronicle reflected the political programme of the Romanovich dynasty ruling Galicia–Volhynia. Galicia–Volhynia competed with other successor states of Kievan Rus' (notably Vladimir-Suzdal) to claim the Kievan inheritance. According to the Galician–Volhynian Chronicle, Galicia–Volhynia's King Daniil was the last ruler of Kiev preceding the Mongolian invasion and thus Galicia–Volhynia's rulers were the only legitimate successors to the Kievan throne.[11] Until the end of Galician-Volhynian state, its rulers advanced claims upon "all the land of Rus'." The seal of King Yuri I contained the Latin inscription domini georgi regis rusie.[11]

In contrast to their consistent secular or political claims to the Kievan inheritance, Galicia's rulers were not concerned by religious succession. This differentiated them from their rivals in Vladimir-Suzdal, who sought to, and attained, control over the Kievan Church. Rather than contest Vladimir-Suzal's dominance of the Kievan Church, Galicia-Volhynia's rulers merely asked for and obtained a separate Church from Byzantium.[11]

Galicia–Volhynia also differed from the northern and eastern principalities of the former Kievan Rus' in terms of its relationship with its western neighbors. King Danylo was alternatively an ally or a rival with neighboring Slavic Poland and partially Slavic Hungary. According to historian George Vernadsky, Galicia–Volhynia, Poland and Hungary belonged to the same psychological and cultural world. The Roman Catholic Church was seen as a neighbor and there was much intermarriage between the princely houses of Galicia and those of neighboring Catholic countries. In contrast, the Westerners faced by Alexander, prince of Novgorod, were the Teutonic Knights, and the northeastern Rus' experience of the West was that of hostile crusaders rather than peers.[7]

See also




  • Галицько-Волинський Літопис. Іпатіївський список
  • Галицько-Волинський Літопис. Іпатіївський список
  • Галицько-Волинський Літопис. Острозький (Хлєбниковський) список
  • Галицько-Волинський Літопис. Переклад Л.Махновця
  • Литовсько-білоруські літописи
  • Список городів руських дальніх і близьких
  • Ілюстрації з "Chronicon Pictum"
  • . Київ, 1984"
  • Болеслав-Юрий II, князь всей Малой Руси: Сборник материалов и исследований. — Санкт-Петербург, 1907.

Further reading


  • Андрияшев А. М. Очерки истории Волынской земли до конца XIV ст. Киев, 1887.
  • Галицкий исторический сборник, 1854, вып. 2.
  • Греков Б. Д. Древнейшие судьбы славянства в Прикарпатских. областях // Вестник АН СССР. 1940. № 11-12.
  • Греков Б. Д. Крестьяне на Руси. — Москва,1952.
  • Иванов П. А., Исторические судьбы Волынской земли с древнейших времен до конца XIV века, Одесса, 1895.
  • . Київ, 1984.
  • . — Львів, 2001. — С.154-165.
  • Котляр М. Ф. Данило Галицький. — Київ, 1979.
  • Материалы для истории и этнографии края. — Волынския губернския ведомости, 1854.
  • . — Москва, 1950.
  • Руссов С. Волынские записки сочинінные Степаном Руссовым в Житомире. — Санкт-Петербург, 1809.
  • . Киев, "Наукова думка", 1987.


  • Bielowski A. Halickowlodzimierskie księstwo. — Biblioteka Ossolińskich., t. 4.
  • Bielowski A. Królewstwo Galicji (o starem księstwie Halickiem). — Biblioteka Ossolińskich, 1860, t. 1
  • Gebhard L. A. Geschichte des Konigreiches Galizien, Lodomerien und Rotreussen. — Pest, 1778;
  • Engel J. Ch. Geschichte von Halitsch und Vlodimir. — Wien, 1792.
  • Harasiewicz M. Berichtigung der Umrisse zu einer Geschichte der Ruthenen. — Wien, 1835.
  • Harasiewicz M. Annales ecclesiae Ruthenae. — Leopoli, 1862.
  • Hoppe L A. Geschichte des Konigreiches Galizien und Lodomerien. — Wien, 1792.
  • Lewicki A. Ruthenische Teilfürstentümer. — In: Österreichische Monarchie im Wort und Bild Galizien. Wien, 1894.
  • Siarczyński F. Dzieje księstwa niegdyś Przemyślskiego. — Czasopism naukowy Biblioteki im. Ossolińskich, 1828, N 2/3;
  • Siarczyński F. Dzieje niegdyś księstwa Belzkiego i miasta Belza. — Czasopism naukowy Biblioteki im. Ossolińskich, 1829, N 2.
  • Stecki J. T. Wołyń pod względem statystycznym, historycznym i archeologicznym. — Lwów, 1864
  • Zubrzycki D. Rys do historii narodu ruskiego w Galicji i hierarchii cerkiewnej w temże królewstwie. — Lwów, 1837.
  • Zubrzycki D. Kronika miasta Lwowa. — Lwów, 1844.

External links

  • . За ред. І. Підкови та Р. Шуста. — Київ: Генеза, 1993.
  • Галицько-волинські князі
  • . 2001, №48 (372)
  • Карта Галицько-Волинського князівства
  • Володимир-Волинський у «Галереї мистецтв»


  • )
  • Волинська земля у складі Галицько-Волинського князівства (Volynśka zemľa u skladi Halyćko-Volynśkoho kńazivstva)
  • )

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.