Consequences Of The Mongol Inv Essay, Research Paper
What were the consequences of the Mongol invasion on Kievan Russia?
The question about the consequences of the Mongol invasion is considered one of the most difficult in the history of Russia. Definitely, they had a great impact on demographics, agriculture, social, political and cultural development of the territories.
Generally speaking, the influence of 200-year-long yoke was negative. It brought wholesale devastation and massacre to Russia. (Nicholas V. Riasanovsky, A History of Russia, 20) For instance, a Mongol chronicle states that Batu and his lieutenants destroyed the towns of the Russians and killed or captured all their inhabitants. As a result the serious diminish of the population acured after. Those people, who survived the tatar raids, in order to avoid the new routs, had to escape to the more secure territories- West and North-West of Volgo-Ocksk Mezhdurech e. (Phroyanov, The History of Russia from Ancient Times Until Beginning of the XXc.) All these people didn t have any lands and were unable to pay dan . So they had to ask for help the gentry. As a result of it, slowly but surly the number of dependent feudal farmers increased. At the same time the standing of the gentry, especially the princes, changed. If before they received most of their profits from dan , kormlenie, and polud e, now they can t use them anymore, everything must be given to Hord. Therefore, the only way for them to survive was to change their orientation to agriculture. That what actually happened: the huge increase in the number of large private land estates took place in the end of the XIII-XIVcc.
The role of prince in the political sphere also increased. During the time of Kievan Russia, the Prince depended upon veche, which could even exile him. However, now they came to the cities with yarlick, or even with khan s troops, which implies their increasing power.
The impact on culture also was bad. The decades following the invasion, acquired the character of a grim struggle for survival, with the advanced and elaborate Kievan style of life and ethical and cultural standards in rapid decline. (N.Riasanovsky, A History of Russia, 73)
However, the limited number of the positive contributions of Mongols to Russian history does exist. One of the most important of them is the development of the Orthodox Church in Russia. Khan Mengu-Temir issued a yarlik exempting all church lands from taxation, and all people working on them from military service. The church thus became a specially privileged institution. The reason for it is a Mongol tradition- to respect the learned and wise men of all peoples. (Archie Brown, Gerald S. Smith, The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Russia and the Former Soviet Union, 76)
Another positive change is that the financial measures of Mongols together with the cansus and Mongol roads added something to process of centralization in Russia. (N.Riasanovsky, A History of Russia, 73)
The Mongol also could be credited with affecting the evolution of Russian military forces and tactics, notably cavalry. (N.Riasanovsky, A History of Russia, 73)
That is to say, however, the yoke lasted for for almost 200 years, its impact didn t reached the possible maximum. The reason for that is because the main goal of Mongols was robbery and receiving of dan . The capture of territories never was their goal, just because the nomadic life style and economic factors. The boards of the invention were on the direct proportion with the resistance they met. (A.B.Voronin, The History of the Russian State) Very important to note that it seems incorrect to say that Kievan culture was destroyed. In the shift of cultural center of gravity of the numerous regional centers, Kievan traditions were in the main continued and in some cases encode remarkable development: Galisian literature, Novgorodian icon painting, Suzdalian architecture. Similarly the notions of isolation from the west can not be supported. The Novgorodian culture sphere, the Upper Dnieper territories, the principalities of Volhynia and Galisia had closer contact with Western and central Europe than in the previous period. (Encyclopedia Britanica, Ed. 15th)
How did the society that emerged after the invasion differ from Kievan Russia? Refer to institutions, social structure, culture and geography.
With the time and heavy impact of tatars, Russian religion and culture just like its economy and social development experienced the dramatic change. However all of the trates of Moscovite and Appanage Russia directly stemme from the Kievan period. To see it better let s try to compare and contrast geography, politics, economy, culture and structure of these two periods.
At its zenith Kievan state stretched from Baltic to Black Sea and from mouth of Oka river to Carpatian mountains. The Appanage Russia after the emergence of the Union of Lubin had under its rule almost the same territories. However, Ivan the Terrible and Theodore (on the times of Moscovite Russia) concurred a lot of what in a last couple of centuries used to be Mongol Khanate, by that considerably expending the size of the country.
From the political point of view, the key difference between two states is in their structure. The Kievan Russia appeared as the united state, which gradually was divided to the smaller princedoms. Beginning with Sviatoslav, who assigned to control the territories to his three sons: Iaropolk, Vladimir and Oleg. But later on, Iaroslav did the same thing, but the only difference that he had six children, so princedoms assigned became even smaller. This process continued and led to the break between prince and state and to the weakening of its (state s) parts. At that moment Russia emerged as an aggregate of 10-12 states; the social conflicts, destruction trade and wars between the princes became its main characteristics.
However, in Appanage and Moscovut Russia we watch the reversed flow of the process of division of lands. Ivan Kalita was the first prince who started gathering of the Russian lands. On these times the unification of Russia under Moscow, which then becomes its capital instead of Kiev, takes place. Slowly, all the small princedoms and their princes disappear, and Russia becomes autocratic country with one ruler- Tsar.
At the same time as the country becomes more powerful, its middle class people gradually lose their rights. For example, town assembly veche, which existed in Kievan Russia, disappeared during Appanage period. Traders, artisans, middle class experienced decline and were politically ineffective. (N.Riasanovsky, A History of Russia, 118) Among other democratic institutions duma also experienced negative change. In Appanage Russia it supports authority of ruler.
Many new words, which usually mean some kind of duties, enter Russian lexicon. As the example barshchina and obrok supplement kormlenie, polud e and povoz. Votchina (hereditary landholding) and pomest e (estate granted by prince during the term service) also were new, not known in Kievan period, kinds of land owing for Russia.
In the X-XI centuries Kievan Russia felt the strong influence from the Byzantine Empire. It made the major impact on economical and cultural spheres of life.
In the cultural sphere the most important was the conversion of Russia into Christianity by St.Vladimir in about 998. Until that time Russians used to be pagans. The Christianity gave strong ideological basis urging the unity of country. It is important to emphasize, that Christianity came to Russia not from Rom. That s why it led to relative isolation from the rest of Europe and Latin Civilization. The fact that it came from Byzantine, increased even more already big influence on Russia; written literature experienced strong Byzantene impact, just like customs, lows, manners.
Church stayed, probably, the only institution in Russia, which didn t really experienced any dramatic changes on the way of its development (on that time). Meaning the attitude towards it had always been positive. Beginning its existence in Kievan Russia, it had privileges during the Mongol yoke and had successfully developed and gained power and influence through the time of Appanage and Moscovite Russia (when it owned 25% of cultivated land in the country). The arts closely connected with Church such as wooden architecture and icon painting also reached high creative achievements. Fasting , celebrating religious holidays and generally observing the Church calendar provided further occasions for ritualism.
Byzantine effected also the economy of Kievan Russia, since they had strong trade connections.