Principality of Kiev

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Principality of Kiev
Old East Slavic: Киевское князство
Coin issued by Prince Vladimir Olgerdovich of Kiev. 1388–1392
Coin issued by Prince Vladimir Olgerdovich of Kiev. 1388–1392
Capital Kiev
Languages Old East Slavic
Religion Eastern Orthodox
Government Monarchy
 •  Established 1132
 •  Disestablished 1471
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Kievan Rus' Kievan Rus'
Kiev Voivodeship Kiev Voivodeship
Warning: Value not specified for "common_name"
File:Rus de Kiev en 1237.png
The Rus' principalities in 1237. Kiev is shown in light blue.

The Principality of Kiev (Old East Slavic: Киевское князство, Ukrainian: Київське князівство) was a Ruthenian state in the regions of central Ukraine around the city of Kiev that existed after the fragmentation of the Kievan Rus' in the early 12th century.


The Principality of Kiev occupied land areas on both banks of the Dnieper River, bordering the Principality of Polotsk to the north-west, the Principality of Chernigov to the north-east, Poland to the west, the Principality of Galicja to the south-west and Cumania to the south-east. Later, Kiev would be bordered by the separated Principality of Turov-Pinsk to the north and the joined Principality of Galicja-Volhynia to the west.


The region of the Kievan Rus' fragmented in the early 12th century and a number of semi-autonomous successor states arose. Kiev remained the core of the country and was the center of the spiritual life with the office of the Metropolitan of the Russian Orthodox Church in Kiev.

Reconstructed Orthodox church in Kiev

Following the death of Mstislav I of Kiev in 1132, the semi-autonomous states were de facto independent and so forth brought the emergence of the Principality of Kiev as a separate principality.

The importance of the Kievan Principality began to decline. In the years of 1150-1180 saw many of its cities such as Vyshhorod, Kaniv and Belgorod seek independence as individual principalities. The emergence of the principalities of Vladimir-Suzdal and Galicia-Volhynia resulted in the transition of the political and cultural center of Ruthenia as well as the migration of citizens to cities like Vladimir and Halych.

The Mongol Invasion left the Principality of Kiev in a severely ruined state. Following the invasions, it was now under a formal suzerainty of the Grand Prince of Vladimir-Suzdal, Alexander Nevsky, whom in turn was a vassal to the Mongols. After the Battle of Irpen in 1321, Kiev was the object of desire among the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas and it was incorporated to the Grand Duchy of Lithuania in 1362. The duchy formally existed as a distinct entity until 1471 when it was converted into the Kiev Voivodeship