Iurii Dolgorukii

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Iurii Dolgorukii


Born 1090’s; died May 15, 1157, in Kiev. Prince of Suzdal’; grand prince of Kiev. Sixth son of Vladimir Vsevolodovich Monomakh.

While his father was still alive, Iurii ruled the Rostov-Suzdal’ Principality. In 1125, after becoming an independent prince, he moved the capital of the principality from Rostov to Suzdal’. After the death of Grand Prince Mstislav Vladimirovich of Kiev in 1132, Iurii turned his attention to the south with the aim of acquiring first the southern Pereiaslavl’ (now Pereiaslav-Khmel’nitskii) and then Kiev; for these activities he received the nickname “Dolgorukii” (literally, “long-armed”). In the first stage of the struggle (1132–35), however, he was unsuccessful.

Under Iurii the boundaries of the Rostov-Suzdal’ Principality were fixed, especially those adjoining the Novgorod feudal republic and the Chernigov Principality. Fortresses were built in border areas (including Ksniatin, Dubna, and, evidently, Tver’) and in central regions (including Pereiaslavl’, Iur’ev-Pol’skii, and Dmitrov). In 1147, Iurii met with Prince Sviatoslav Ol’govich of Novgorod-Severskii in the settlement of Moscow. The founding of Moscow traditionally dates from the meeting, in connection with which Moscow is first mentioned in historical sources. In 1156, Iurii fortified Moscow with new wooden walls and a moat.

In 1147, Iurii resumed his struggle for Kiev, and in 1149 he took the city; in 1151, however, he was defeated by Iziaslav Mstislavich. In 1155, Iurii again seized Kiev. After his death an uprising broke out in the city, and during the course of the rebellion his conquests in the south were lost.

In 1954 a monument was erected in Moscow to Iurii Dolgorukii as the founder of the city. His likeness appears on the medal In Memory of the 800th Anniversary of Moscow, which was introduced in 1947.


Voronin, N. N. Zodchestvo Severo-Vostochnoi Rusi XII-XV vv., vol. 1. Moscow, 1961.
Kuchkin, V. A. “Rostovo-Suzdal’skaia zemlia v X-pervoi treti XIII vv.” Istoriia SSSR, 1969, no. 2.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
the tsar for dispatching Iurii Dolgorukii (to scour the Don for fugitives from the central provinces), whose arrival in the fall of 1707 became the impetus for the rebellion.
The first foundation stone was for a statue to the city's founder, Iurii Dolgorukii, which was to be erected in Soviet Square in the heart of downtown Moscow, replacing an obelisk of the Revolutionary era.
That's Iurii Dolgorukii, the founder of Moscow!" In response, the first Georgian exclaims: "What a remarkable man!
(32) From a version of the Soviet-era joke reprinted in a retrospective article on the statue of Moscow's founder (Bogdan Stepovoi, "Iurii Dolgorukii vybral svobodu," Izvestiia, 7 September 2007).
It can help to provide more in-depth context, for example, that the Roger of Sicily who kidnapped Abraham bin Yiju's entire family in 1148 in Tunisia was then allied with King Louis VII of France, King Geza of Hungary, and Iziaslav M'stislavich, countering an alliance that included Emperor Manual Komnenos of Byzantium, King Konrad of Hohenstaufen, King Vladislav of Bohemia, Vladimirko of Galicia, Iurii Dolgorukii, and Polovtsians.
It appears (now in its second, slightly but distinctly improved edition) in the venerable popular series Zhizn' zamechatel'nykh liudei (Lives of Remarkable People), where the author has more recently published a life of Iurii Dolgorukii. (21) From a strictly scholarly perspective the book might be condemned as flawed, but it has some surprising and substantial virtues.