Rusian genealogy

Maintained by: Christian Raffensperger ( and David J. Birnbaum ( [Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 3.0 Unported License] Last modified: 2021-03-01T12:09:18-0500 About this site:

Introduction | About | Browse | Query | Sources | Maps

N.N. of Moravia of Bohemia

b. unknown – d. unknown


Svjatopolk M′stislavič, son of M′stislav Volodimerič, was married between Christmas 1143 and Epiphany 1144 to a woman from Moravia. [5] The Novgorod Fourth Chronicle aberrantly records that the ruler who was married was Svjatopolk Vsevolodovič. [6] However, it is clear from the records that at that time Svjatopolk M′stislavič was ruler of Novgorod, [7] and thus the only Volodimeroviči likely to be married in the city. The confusion may stem from the fact that in the same year, 1143, Vsevolod Ol′govič married off his son Svjatoslav. [8]

The identity of the groom, therefore, is relatively straightforward, but not that of the bride. All of the chronicle records clearly state that Svjatopolk’s bride came from Moravia. [9] Moravia receives a place in the PVL due to its importance as the first home for the Slavonic Liturgy and for housing Constantine and Methodius, but apart from that it does not often make an appearance. [10] Baumgarten, in pursuing his research on dynastic marriages, even went so far as to track down the potential royal brides from Bohemia and determined that it could only have been Ephrosina, daughter of Otto II. [11] He did this through a process of elimination, finding which daughters had been born, died, and married to determine who was available, similar to Nazarenko’s search, also involving Bohemia, for the mother of Svjatopolk Izjaslavič. [12] Otto II was duke, or vice–duke, of Olomouc one of the main centers of the region of Moravia, beholden to the Duke of Bohemia, located in Prague. [13] Adding to the credibility of this idea is the fact that Otto III, Otto II’s son and Ephrosina’s brother, was in exile in Rus′ from roughly 1126 until 1140. [14] Though, where he was and what he was doing are unknown, and in fact no Rusian chronicle mentions his existence whatsoever. If one might speculate, however, it seems likely that such an exile would go to Kyiv as had happened many times in the past. M′stislav Volodimerič was ruling in Kyiv at that time, and for the first half of Otto’s exile in Rus′. To speculate further, M′stislav and Otto may have gotten on well, and he may have come to know M′stislav’s sons, including Svjatopolk who had not yet assumed rule of a city and was thus most likely with his father in Kyiv. [15] Though this is just speculation, it fits a record of Rusian rulers building alliances with exiled royalty and tieing them together through marriage. It also fits later events, in which Bohemian forces march to the aid of Svjatopolk’s brother Izjaslav. [16] It is not the only possibility however, as trading ties are always a possibility especially with Svjatopolk ruling the important trading cities of Pskov and Novgorod from roughly 1137–48, or simply acknowledging the fact that the M′stislaviči largely controlled the territory of Volodymyr, which occupied territory on the east–west trade route that goes through Bohemia as well.

These questions and the lack of source material add to the mystery surrounding some of the Rusian dynastic marriages, their participants, and their purposes, even in the more well-documented twelfth century. And though the conjecture regarding Ephrosina is fascinating, it is not supported by enough evidence to list her as such in the tables of part 2.


  1. Birth/Death: [↑]
  2. Father: [↑]
  3. Mother: [↑]
  4. Marriage to Sviatopolk Mstislavich: NPL s.a. 1143.; NChL s.a. 1143 (Sviatopolk is identified as Vsevolodich).; Tver Chronicle, s.a. 1143.[↑]
  5. NPL, s.a. 1143.[↑]
  6. NČL, s.a. 1143.[↑]
  7. NPL, s.a. 1142; Laurentian Chronicle, s.a. 1141; Hypatian Chronicle, s.a. 1142; Voskresenskij Chronicle, s.a. 1141; Tver Chronicle, s.a. 1142.[↑]
  8. See above for Svjatoslav Vsevolodič.[↑]
  9. Though Vernadsky assumed this meant Bohemia, or Czechia, it is possible to accept the specificity of the chronicler that she was in fact from Moravia, a territory governed by the Slavniks until the end of the tenth century, and then controlled by the Premyslids, who aslo controlled Bohemia. Vernadsky, Kievan Russia, 330. [↑]
  10. PVL, s.a. 898. [↑]
  11. Baumgarten, “"Généalogies,"” 25, table V.[↑]
  12. Nazarenko, Drevnjaja Rus′ na meždunarodnyx putjax, 566ff.[↑]
  13. Wolverton. Hastening Toward Prague, 104–5, 215.[↑]
  14. Ibid., 214–15.[↑]
  15. Svjatopolk does not appear as a ruler of a city until ruling Polack briefly in 1132. Laurentian Chronicle, s.a. 1132; Tver Chronicle, s.a. 1132; Nikon Chronicle, s.a. 1132.[↑]
  16. Hypatian Chronicle, s.a. 1149.[↑]