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Sviatopolk II of Kiev

Sviatopolk II of Kiev

Grand prince of kiev
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro Grand prince of kiev
Gender male
Birth 1050
Death April 16, 1113 (Vyshhorod, Vyshhorod Raion, Kyiv Oblast, Ukraine)
Mother: Gertrude of Poland
Father: Iziaslav I of Kiev
Siblings: franzingxxx klindix Yaropolk Izyaslavich
Children: Zbyslava of KievIziaslav SviatopolkovichPredslava of KievIaroslav Sviatopolkovich someonesomeone
The details

Sviatopolk II Iziaslavich (1050 – April 16, 1113) was supreme ruler of the Kievan Rus for 20 years, from 1093 to 1113. He was not a popular prince, and his reign was marked by incessant rivalry with his cousin Vladimir Monomakh. Upon his death the Kievan citizens raised a rebellion against the Jewish merchants and Varangian officials who speculated in grain and salt.

Early life

Sviatopolk was the son of Iziaslav Iaroslavich by his concubine. Sviatopolk's Christian name was Michael. During his brother Iaropolk's life, Sviatopolk was not regarded as a potential claimant to the Kievan throne. In 1069 he was sent to Polotsk, a city briefly taken by his father from the local ruler Vseslav, and then he spent ten years (1078–88) ruling Novgorod. Upon his brother's death he succeeded him in Turov, which would remain in possession of his descendants until the 17th century.


Mosaic of St. Demetrius was installed by Sviatopolk in the Kievan St. Michael's Golden-Domed Monastery to glorify the patron saint of his father.

When Vsevolod Iaroslavich died in 1093, Sviatopolk was acknowledged by other princes as the senior son of Veliki Kniaz and permitted to ascend the Kievan throne. Although he participated in the princely congresses organized by Vladimir Monomakh, he is sometimes charged with encouraging internecine wars among Rurikid princes. For instance, he sided with his cousin David of Volhynia and his son-in-law Bolesław III Wrymouth in capturing and blinding one of the Galician princes. He also sided with Vladimir Monomakh in several campaigns against the Kypchaks but was defeated in the Battle of the Stugna River (1093). Later that year, Sviatopolk would face the Kypchaks again, and again be defeated. Whereupon the Kypchaks destroyed Torchesk, an Oghuz Turk settlement.

In 1096, in an attempt to force Oleg I of Chernigov into a Rus compact, Sviatopolk left his lands undefended. His father-in-law, Tugorkhan raided Pereiaslavl, while Boniak raided as far as Kiev, destroying Berestovo and sacking the three monasteries of Klov, Vydubichi, and the Caves. Tugorkhan would be killed during his raid on Pereiaslavl, consequently Sviatopolk would have him buried in Kiev.

Sviatopolk's Christian name was Michael, so he encouraged embellishment of St Michael's Abbey in Kiev, which has been known as the Golden-Roofed up to the present. The history now known as the Primary Chronicle was compiled by the monk Nestor during Sviatopolk's reign.

Marriage and children

Sviatopolk married firstly a Bohemian princess (Přemyslid dynasty), probably a daughter of Duke Spytihněv II. They had three children:

  1. Zbyslava, married to king Boleslaw III of Poland on November 15, 1102.
  2. Predslava, married to Prince Álmos of Hungary on August 21, 1104. Her fate is less known.
  3. Iaroslav (died 1123), Prince of Volynia and Turov was married three times - to Hungarian, Polish Sophia (daughter of Władysław I Herman and his second wife Judith of Swabia), and Kievan princesses. In consequence of Iaroslav's early death, his descendants forfeited any right to the Kievan throne and had to content themselves with Turov and Pinsk.

Secondly, in 1094 Sviatopolk married to a daughter of Tugorkhan of the Kypchaks, Olena. They had four children:

  1. Anna (died 1136), married to Sviatoslav Davydych from Chernihiv who turned into a monk upon her death and later became Saint Nikolai Svyatoslav Davydych of Chernihiv.
  2. Maria, married Piotr Włostowic, castellan of Wroclaw and Polish palatine.
  3. Bryachislav (1104–1127), possibly dethroned Iaroslav as the Prince of Turov (1118–1123) in 1118.
  4. Izyaslav (died 1127), possibly the Prince of Turov in 1123.

In 1104, Sviatopolk would marry for a third time to Barbara Comnena.

Some sources claim Sviatopolk had an out-of-wedlock son Mstislav who ruled Novgorod-Sieversky in 1095–1097 and later Volyn (1097–1099). Mstislav later was murdered in Volodymyr-Volynski.

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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