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[1487 A.D.] lieutenant. The continual incursions of the Voguls obliged Ivan to send troops to the Ugrian territory and Prince Kurbski even crossed the Ural. While leaving there native princes, Ivan nevertheless included the lands of Perm and Ugria in his title. With the Golden Horde Ivan did not begin war, although from the very beginning he did not pay tribute punctually. Ivan's enemy, the grand prince of Lithuania, incited the Tatars against Moscow, and in 1471 Casimir called upon Ahmud to rise against the grand prince of Moscow; Ahmud however took a whole year to assemble his troops, and meanwhile during the migration of the Tatars from Sarai, which took place every summer, the people of Viatka came and plundered it. In 1472 Ahmed at last assembled his troops and took Alexin, but on meeting the grand prince's brothers with a strong army at the river Oka, he decided not to go further.

After this, until 1480, the relations with the Golden Horde remained indefinite. Meanwhile intercourse was established with the Crimean horde. Azi Girai died in 1467, and his son Nordovlat succeeded him, but he was deposed by his brother Mengli Girai, and sought a refuge with Casimir. Ivan hastened to enter into relations with Mengli Girai through the intermediation of a Jew of Feodosia, named Kokos; Mengli Girai, without breaking with Casimir, hastened to affirm these relations, which, however, were not very profitable, on account of the disturbances in the Crimea: the overthrow of Mengli Girai, by Aidar, the taking of Feodosia by the Turks, and the consequent destruction of the power of the Genoese in the Crimea; the capture of Mengli Girai and his liberation on the condition of his becoming a Turkish tributary; the devastation of the Crimea by the son of Ahmed, and the rise of the czarevitch Zenebek to the supreme power. It was only in 1479 that Mengli Girai finally established himself in the Crimea and that his constant relations with Moscow commenced.1

In 1480 the khan of the Golden Horde, Ahmed, incited by Casimir of Lithuania, prepared to march against Russia. It is reported that about that time Ivan refused to pay tribute, and that Sophia persuaded Ivan not to go out to meet the Tatar envoys under the pretext of illness, and also by her cunning managed to destroy the hospice of the Tatars in the Kremlin; it is said that she wrote to the wife of the khan telling her that she had had a vision in which she had been commanded to build a church upon the very same site, and that the wife of the khan, who was bribed with presents, managed to arrange the matter, and when the envoys came there was no resting place to be found for them in Moscow. However this may be, it is certain that Ivan ceased to pay tribute. When he heard of Ahmed's coming Ivan took up his position on the banks of the Oka, where he remained encamped from July until September; Ahmed being informed that the passage was here occupied, passed through the territories of Lithuania and came to the Ugra, but here he also found the passages occupied. The two armies remained in this position until November, and in the camp of the grand prince councils were held as to what should be done, for two parties had arisen, the one proposing to offer a ransom, while the other was for fighting; the famous letter of Archbishop Vassain of Moscow was written in the latter spirit. The grand prince was sometimes at Kolomna and sometimes at Moscow to consult with the metropolitan. When the frosts set in, by which the Tatars greatly suffered, the grand prince commanded the Russians to fall back on Kremenets, and

'Mengli Girai's rivals: Adir, Nordovlat, and Zenebek, fled to Moscow and were detained by Ivan, who thus rendered Mengli Girai a service at the same time that he held out their liberation as a tacit menace e

[1494-1495 A.D.] meanwhile the Tatars fled. Soon after his return to Sarai, Ahmed was killed by Ivak, prince of the Nogaian Tatars; and Mengli Girai delivered Russia from the sons of Ahmed, with whom he was constantly at war.

The relations with the Crimea, which were of importance in the struggle against the Golden Horde, were also of importance in the conflict with Lithuania, and therefore Ivan constantly maintained them; but zealously looked after his own interests. Of course many presents had to be given to the Tatars of the Crimea, although Ivan was economical to such a degree that when sheep were given to the envoys he required the skins to be returned; but he spent his wealth all the more willingly for this object, because Lithuania on her side also endeavoured to bribe the horde, and a regular auction went on in the Crimea. The conquest of Feodosia by the Turks made it necessary for the Russians to enter into relations with them for commercial



The friendship of Mengli Girai, which had been of value to Ivan in his conflicts with the Tatars, was of still greater importance in his dealings with Lithuania: Casimir, occupied with matters in the west, principally the establishment of his son on the throne of Bohemia, had incited both the inhabitants of Novgorod and the Golden Horde against Ivan, while Ivan on his side had instigated Mengli Girai against Lithuania and carried on relations with Casimir's enemy, the king of Hungary, Matthias (I) Corvinus. The quarrels of the border princes serving in the various armies, and their passing into the service of the Muscovite sovereign, served as the chief pretext for dissatisfaction. The grand prince of Moscow, taking advantage of the fact that in the treaty concluded between Vasili Vasilievitch and Casimir, the subject of the princes had been treated very vaguely, began to receive those that passed into his service. Thus he received together with their domains Prince I. M. Vorotinski, Prince I. V. Bielski, and Prince D. Th. Vorotinski. The complaints at their desertions, the quarrels of the border princes, and in general, the frontier disagreements, were a continual subject of friction, which occasionally went as far as slight skirmishes. In 1492 Casimir died, and Lithuania chose as king his son Alexander, while Poland took as king his other son John. Ivan again roused Mengli Girai against Lithuania and sent detachments of his troops to lay waste the frontiers. Propositions of peace were sent from Lithuania and negotiations for a marriage with one of the daughters of Ivan were entered upon. In Moscow it was insisted that the negotiations for peace should precede those for marriage. Meanwhile more princes passed into the Russian service: two more princes Vorotinski, Prince Mezetski and Prince Viazemski; the frontier incursions also continued. Finally in 1494 Alexander sent his ambassadors to open negotiations both for peace and for the marriage. The treaty concluded by them recognised the passing of the princes into Ivan's service, and what was of even greater importance, Ivan was therein called sovereign of all Russia. Ivan then gave his consent to the marriage of his daughter Helen with the grand prince of Lithuania, Alexander, stipulating however that a promise in writing should be given that Helen would not be constrained to change her religion. When all this was concluded, in 1495 Ivan sent Helen to Lithuania, giving her detailed instructions. At the celebration of the marriage 'Soloviov decisively confutes the story that the cause of Ahmed's retreat was the destruction of Sarai by Nordovlat.

[1495-1503 A.D.] ceremony the Russian ambassadors insisted that the ceremony should also be celebrated by an orthodox priest. But even from the very beginning it was manifest that seeds of discord lay hidden in this alliance. Alexander refused to build an orthodox church at his court, the boyars from Moscow who were with Helen were soon sent back, and finally Alexander ceased to give Ivan the title of sovereign of all Russia. The dissatisfaction grew, so that Ivan wrote to Mengli Girai: "If Alexander makes peace with you now, let us know if he does not, also let us know, and we are with you, our brother." More princes passed into the service of the grand prince of Moscow, amongst them Prince Simon Bielski, who asserted that persecutions against orthodoxy had commenced in Lithuania, and accused the bishop of Smolensk, Joseph, of co-operating with the Latins; Prince Simon Ivanovitch (son of Ivan of Mozhaisk) with Tchernigov, and Prince Vasili Ivanovitch (a grandson of Shemiaka) with Novgorod Severski also came over (1499). Ivan sent Alexander a declaration of war; which began with incursions of the vassal princes, and on the 14th of July, 1500, Prince Daniel Kholmski, who led the troops of Tver and Moscow, and the vassal Tatars and princes, met the Lithuanian hetman Prince Constantine, defeated him, and took him prisoner; on the other hand the grand prince's son, Prince Dmitri Ivanovitch, was unable to take Smolensk, and in general during four years warlike action proceeded very feebly. Diplomatic intrigue was however carried on with great activity; Moscow incited Mengli Girai against Lithuania, who sent his sons to devastate Lithuania and Poland, in spite of tempting offers from Alexander.

Stephen of Moldavia, however, hearing of the disgrace and abandonment into which his daughter Helen (widow of Ivan's son) had fallen at the court of Moscow, made peace with Alexander; his enmity however did not express itself in any important act. Far more important was the help given to Alexander by the Livonian grand master Plettenberg. Notwithstanding the truce which had been concluded, the continual collisions between the Livonians and the inhabitants of Pskov did not cease. To avenge one of these incursions, Ivan sent twenty thousand troops to Livonia who laid waste the land, captured towns, and carried away prisoners. A fresh truce was concluded (1482) which was extended in 1493, but the Germans burned a certain Russian in Reval, and in answer to Russian complaints they replied that they would have burned the grand prince himself. This, it is supposed, explains the order given in 1495 to expel the Hanseatic merchants and close their shops; but perhaps it is more probable that the true reason was the treaty concluded with the king of Denmark, the enemy of the Hansa, who had asked for help against the Swedes, promising in the event of success to cede a part of Finland to Russia. Ivan sent an army against Sweden; but when the Danish king took possession of Sweden he gave nothing to Russia. Such being the relations between Russia and Livonia, it was quite natural that the grand master Plettenberg should hasten to conclude an alliance with Lithuania (1501). He defeated the Russians near Izborsk, but did not take the town and turned back, while the Russians continued to ravage Livonia. Plettenberg again entered Russian territory, besieged Pskov, and a battle took place near Lake Smolin, but it was not decisive (1502). Meanwhile Alexander began negotiations for peace, partly through his brothers John (after whose death in 1502 he occupied the throne of Poland) and Vladislav, and partly through embassies. Finally, in 1503, a treaty was concluded by which Russia kept all her acquisitions and Ivan was granted the title of sovereign of all Russia. A truce was then concluded with Livonia.

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Painted especially for " The Historians' History of the World" by P. L. de Czernichowski

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