Briefly about the main points
It should be understood that the characterization of the personality of Prince Oleg the Prophet is based on scant information from chronicles, which for thousands of years have been subjected to corrections, additions, and in many ways are criticized by modern historians.
Nevertheless, one of the semi-legendary founders of the ancient Russian state firmly occupies a place both in public consciousness and as the subject of numerous works of art of various genres and directions.
Below is a brief list of the main information characterizing the personality of Prince Oleg the Prophet and his influence on history:
Character traits and qualities
- Responsible mentor – ulfilled Rurik’s task by not only raising Igor but also preparing a solid foundation for his further development of the state.
- Skilled tactician – the decision to put the ships on wheels before the siege of Constantinople scared the Greeks and made them ask for peace.
- Prudent – in the chronicles, the people called Oleg “the Prophet” for his ability to predict the behavior of the enemy.
- True Varangian – the majority of the prince’s life consisted of military campaigns in which he was fortunate.
Main merits and achievements
- United Kiev and Novgorod – by relocating the capital after the murder of Askold and Dir, he linked the two centers of settlement of the eastern Slavs and laid the foundation for the future state.
- Subdued neighboring tribes – deprived the Khazars of several tribute-paying tribes, increased his own army, and strengthened his economic position.
- Built cities – to consolidate and defense on new territories.
- Successful campaign on Tsargrad – concluded a peace treaty with favorable conditions for Russes merchants.
The image of Oleg the Wise in the descriptions of Russian historians
N. M. Karamzin
The wisdom of a Ruler blooms with the educated States; but only the strong hand of a Hero establishes great Empires and serves as a reliable support in their dangerous news. Ancient Russia is famous not for one hero: none of them could compare with Oleg in conquests that established its powerful existence. Has history recognized him as an unlawful Lord since he came of age after Rurik’s heir? Do great deeds and state benefit not excuse the ambition of Oleg? And could hereditary rights, not yet established in Russia by custom, seem sacred to him?.. But the blood of Askold and Dir stains his gloryN. M. Karamzin, clipping from the 5th chapter of the “History of the Russian State”.
S. M. Solovyov
In the legend, he is also a prince-custodian of the land: he arranges tributes, builds cities; under him, almost all the tribes living along the eastern waterway gather under one banner, gain an understanding of their unity, and for the first time, united forces undertake a distant campaign. This is the legend of Oleg, and the historian has no right to suspect this legend, to reject the significance of Oleg as a gatherer of tribesS. M. Solovyov, clipping from the 5th chapter of the “History of Russia”.
Oleg’s success made a deep impression on Rus: he was praised in songs, and his deeds were embellished with fairy-tale traits. Oleg’s activity indeed had exceptional significance: he created a large state from disconnected cities and tribes, liberated Slavs from Khazar subjugation, and arranged proper trade relations between Rus and Byzantium through treaties. In short, he was the creator of Russian-Slavic independence and powerСергей Федорович Платонов. Полный курс лекций по русской
For a more detailed study of the main events of foreign and domestic policy, corresponding sections have been developed:
If you are interested in a more detailed study of the prince’s life, we have prepared a complete version of the history of his activities, illustrated with a large number of portraits and thematic images (reading time 15-20 minutes):
- N. M. Karamzin, clipping from the 5th chapter of the “History of the Russian State”
- S. M. Solovyov, clipping from the 5th chapter of the “History of Russia”
- Сергей Федорович Платонов. Полный курс лекций по русской истории