Oleg

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Oleg

(ō`leg, Rus. ôlĕk`) or

Oleh

(ôlĕkh`), d. c.912, founder of Kievan RusKievan Rus
, medieval state of the Eastern Slavs. It was the earliest predecessor of modern Ukraine and Russia. Flourishing from the 10th to the 13th cent., it included nearly all of present-day Ukraine and Belarus and part of NW European Russia, extending as far N as Novgorod
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. Succeeding his kinsman RurikRurik
, d. 879, semilegendary Varangian warrior, regarded as the founder of the princely dynasty of Kievan Rus. Rurik and his two brothers, at the head of an armed band, apparently seized Novgorod and nearby districts (c.862).
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 as leader of the VarangiansVarangians
, name given by Slavs and Byzantine Greeks to Scandinavians who began to raid the eastern shores of the Baltic and penetrate Eastern Europe by the 9th cent. Their leader, Rurik, established himself at Novgorod in 862, thus laying the traditional foundation for Kievan
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 at Novgorod, Oleg led forth his retainers to seize Kiev (c.879). He made Kiev his capital and set about uniting the Slavic tribes along the Volkhov-Dnieper waterway, freeing them from the overlordship of the Khazars. Oleg concluded commercial treaties with the Byzantine Empire in 907 and 911, making trade with the empire a major factor in the Kievan economy and opening the path for Greek Christian cultural penetration. Oleg was succeeded by IgorIgor
or Ihor
, d. 945, duke of Kiev (912–45), successor of Oleg as ruler of Kievan Rus. According to the Russian Primary Chronicle, a medieval history, Igor was the son of Rurik, founder of the Russian princely line.
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.
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