Razriadnye Knigi

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Razriadnye Knigi


(gosudarevy razriady), in the 16th and 17th centuries, books containing lists of yearly appointments by the Russian government to military, civil service, and court posts, as well as excerpts from various official documents. They were compiled by secretaries in the grand prince’s chancellery and later by the Razriadnyi Prikaz.

The gosudarevy razriady compiled in 1566, 1584, 1585, 1598, and 1604–05 each covered the previous few years or decades. From 1613 they were compiled annually. A new type of official razriadnye knigi appeared after 1613 containing chiefly descriptions of military service along Russia’s southern borders. Of these, only the volumes dealing with the period from 1613 to 1636 have survived. An abridged edition of the razriadnye knigi, covering the period from 1550 to 1636, was produced in 1636. Such books ceased to be compiled in the early 18th century, when the Razriadnyi Prikaz was dissolved.

With the abolition of the mestnichestvo system of state appointments in 1682, the razriadnye knigi kept in the various government departments were destroyed because they had often been used by members of the service nobility to prove the noble origin and high official status of their ancestors. The razriadnye knigi constitute an extremely important source for the history of the central administration, the army, military affairs, and foreign policy of Russia in the 16th and 17th centuries.


Buganov, V. I. Razriadnye knigi poslednei chelverli X V-nachala X VII vv. Moscow, 1962.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The government produced: military registers (razriadnye knigi), lists of personnel assigned as officers in field armies and to some civilian administrative positions; diplomatic books (posol'skie knigi), divided geographically among Muscovite relations (dela) with Lithuania or Crimea, which contain position papers, accounts of negotiations, and administrative documents dealing with embassies to or from Muscovy; and cadastral surveys (pistsovye knigi), censuses of land allocation or population in order to conduct tax assessments.
The central sections of Kozliakov's biography of Shuiskii are based on the conventional range of primary sources for the Time of Troubles (documents, chronicles, and contemporary accounts, including those of foreign eyewitnesses of events), but the early chapters, which provide a collective history of the Shuiskii clan, make extensive use of the razriadnye knigi (service registers) with their detailed records of precedence disputes.