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Russia Engages the World, 1453-1825
1453 Through the Reign of Ivan the Terrible (1533-1584) The Time of Troubles to the First Romanovs (1598-1682) Peter the Great and His Legacy (1682-1762) The Age of Catherine the Great (1762-1801) The Reign of Emperor Alexander I (1801-1825)


Explore this Section:

From the Fall of Constantinople to the Reign of Ivan the Terrible: A Summary of Russian History
Russia Symbol Introduction
Russia Symbol Prior to 1453
Russia Symbol The Period of Mongol Invasion and Rule, 1237–1480
Russia Symbol Muscovy Emerges as a Power
Russia Symbol 1453–1584: Moscow Becomes the "Third Rome"
Russia Symbol Ivan IV Descends into Madness
From the Fall of Constantinople to the Reign of Ivan the Terrible: A Summary of World History
World Symbol
World Symbol
Special Features

Russia's Globalization:
A Key

Events marked Russia Symbol are specific to Muscovy/Russia's internal development.
Those marked World Symbol are important world historical or cultural events.
Engagement Symbol indicates specific points of sociocultural or military engagement between Muscovy/Russia and foreign powers or individuals.



 Russia Symbol    Muscovy Emerges as a Power

Russia Symbol Vasilii III

Vasilii III
NYPL, Slavic and Baltic Division

The long reigns of Ivan III (r. 1462-1505), called "the Great," and Vasilii III (r. 1505-33) brought the consistent policies of their Muscovite forebears to fruition. All the main rivals for power, including the great Novgorod, were subdued and annexed; it was said of Ivan the Great that "he increased his land even as he slept." The tribute to the Mongols ended. A single monetary system and a law code were devised as part of an ongoing process of centralization. Diplomatic relations were established with the pope in Rome, the emperor in Mughal India, the Holy Roman Emperor, and the Turkish sultan. Italian Renaissance architects refashioned the Kremlin with new towers, palaces, and cathedrals, while native artists, such as Andrei Rublev (d. ca. 1430), Dionisii (ca. 1440-1503), and his followers, excelled at painting icons and frescoes. The policies of Ivan III and Vasilii III were typical of those of the New Monarchs of western Europe, who worked to expand their power and their states. However, Muscovy's direction also had a unique twist.