Imperiia: a spatial history of the Russian Empire


Vladimir is an ancient Russian town situated on the left bank of the Klyazma River.  Founded early in the 11th century, Vladimir played a central role in Medieval Russian history.  Due to its strategic location on the Klyzama, which connected it to the ancient Volga Trade Route, Vladimir grew in wealth, power and political significance.  By 1169, Vladimir secured its position as the most powerful town in northeastern Rus’ and was established as the capital by Prince Andrey Bogolyubsky.  However, early in the 13th century, the Golden Horde conquered Vladimir, which diminished its supremacy and thus enabled Moscow to rise to power.  The following vignettes are written by Alexander Herzen.  They will take us on a visual tour of some important ancient monuments of Vladimir.  They will help explain some of the challenges leaders of Vladimir encountered when attacked by the Mongols.  And they will provide some understanding behind the foundation of Muscovy.  Join Alexander on his journey through Vladimir and its extensive history!

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