Yaroslav the Wise - why wise?

The times of Kievan Rus are a unique period of history, rich in majestic personalities and interesting events that took place not only in the state, but also beyond its borders (in foreign policy activities). There are many questions about that time, the answers to which are still of interest to our contemporaries. For example, this is the question of why Yaroslav the Wise was called wise.

In order to understand this question, it is necessary to make a brief excursion into history. The times of the rule of Prince Yaroslav fell on the beginning of a new century, and the throne was inherited in an internecine struggle with the brothers. Yaroslav received a sole reign as a reward, as well as a land battered by the enemies and a poor, frightened people with constant squabbles. During the reign of Russia, Yaroslav not only gathered and reunited all the lands, but also rebuilt the majestic power from a cultural point of view. It is not for nothing that the times of Yaroslav’s rule in history were called the “Golden Age” of Kievan Rus, and the figure of Prince Yaroslav is considered the ideal manager of the times of the existence of Russia.

Family tree

An interesting fact is that Yaroslav and his children, both sons and daughters, entered into marriage with representatives of other states. For the right to get the hand and heart of the daughters of the prince, many lords of huge and prosperous European countries fought, and the sons married the daughters of successful managers of huge states.

Thus, in Kievan Rus many different customs and traditions came together, the cultures of the best European countries crossed. Ancient Kiev became the center of culture and art, and the beauty of the city surprised even one of the most cruel conquerors of that time, Khan Baty, when he first saw the capital of Kievan Rus.


Another fact of why Yaroslav was nicknamed wise is that he continued the work of his father Vladimir — he then spread Christianity throughout the territory of his state. During his reign, the process of the Christianization of people was officially completed, and wonderful temples and monasteries were built. An example is St. Sophia Cathedral, a temple that still pleases the eyes of Kiev residents and city guests.

During the reign of Prince Yaroslav, the city of Kiev was also surrounded by a defense Moor, and the Golden Gate was crowned with the entrance to the capital of Russia, which has survived to the present.


Prince Yaroslav was able to read (unlike his relatives) and tried as much as possible to raise the level of education of the population in his state. He opened schools for children and adults, and also hired clerks and translators to create a huge library.

Code of laws

Also the first to create a collection of laws in Kievan Rus was Prince Yaroslav. "Ruska Pravda" consisted of the basic rules and laws by which the citizens of Kievan Rus were supposed to live. Also, this set of laws provided for various types of punishment in case of violation of the prescribed rules.

Despite all the merits, the nickname Wise did not always belong to Prince Yaroslav. He was also called Lame (the prince had a broken leg bone) and Old. But why contemporaries called Yaroslav the Wise is not surprising, since this prince wisely ruled the state and in a relatively short time lifted Kievan Rus to unprecedented heights.

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