At the end of the eleventh century two Russian princes (the saintly brothers Boris and Gleb) were canonized.
Services to saints of the same rank were usually used; for example, in some versions of a service to St Equal-to-Apostles Vladimir, verses taken from the service to Sts Equal-to-Apostles Constantine and Helen, (12) and hymns to St Protomartyr Stephen and to Sts Martyrs Cyrus and John (13) are used in the service of Sts Martyrs Boris and Gleb as models.
A second example is a sticheron for the Transfer of the Relics of the Russian saints Boris and Gleb. (39) These two brothers, killed by their older brother Svyatopolk, were the first Russian saints, canonized by the Russian church with the consent of the Byzantine Empire.
One example is the above mentioned service to Sts Boris and Gleb (tables 3-4).
(49) The motif of healing is one of the main themes of the early hymnography to Sts Boris and Gleb. This is confirmed by the iconographic tradition in which the saintly brothers are among selected saints on the borders of the Novgorod icons of St Nicholas, Archbishop of Myra, from the Holy Spirit monastery, in the mid-eighteenth century (50) and in the church devoted to St Nicholas on the island of Lipno, 1294 (51), where they are placed directly under the Fathers of the Church, above the other martyrs and saintly healers Cosmas and Damian, Florus and Laurus.
Later, the kontakion to Sts Boris and Gleb was used as a model for the creation of a kontakion to a local saint--Orthodox Prince Yaropolk Izyaslavich (1043/47-22 November 1086), (54) who was also killed during a political fight with his brothers, thus forming a 'chain model', when the initial connection had been lost.
Rejecting earlier interpretations of this cult, which employed a "two-tiered" model of sanctity very similar to that criticized by Brown in the 1978 Haskell Lectures (The Cult of the Saints: Its Rise and Function in Latin Christianity [Chicago, 1981]), Hollingsworth asserts that "scholars should study the veneration of Boris and Gleb
against the backdrop of how the mutual interaction between the princes and the churchmen led to the formation ...