Kievan Rus

Novgorod Republic gains independence
1136 Jan 1

Novgorod Republic gains independence

Nòvgorod, Novgorod Oblast, Rus

In 882, Prince Oleg founded the Kievan Rus', of which Novgorod was a part from then until 1019–1020. Novgorod Princes were appointed by the Grand Prince of Kiev (usually one of the elder sons).

The Republic of Novgorod prospered because it controlled trade routes from the River Volga to the Baltic Sea. As Kievan Rus' declined, Novgorod became more independent. A local oligarchy ruled Novgorod; major government decisions were made by a town assembly, which also elected a prince as the city's military leader. In 1136, Novgorod revolted against Kyiv, and became independent.

Now an independent city republic, and referred to as "Lord Novgorod the Great" it would spread its "mercantile interest" to the west and the north; to the Baltic Sea and the low-populated forest regions respectively. In 1169, Novgorod acquired its own archbishop, named Ilya, a sign of further increased importance and political independence. Novgorod enjoyed a wide degree of autonomy although being closely associated with the Kievan Rus.