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Dmitry Donskoy. Biography of the Grand Duke

A nine-year-old boy was given the throne by Dmitry Donskoy. The biography of the early period of his life is connected with the constant struggle of candidates for the princely throne in Vladimir. Opponents of Moscow were openly supported by the Horde.

When Dmitry took over the throne, for only two years in Moscow was built the Kremlin, which became a symbol of strength and success of the principality of Moscow. It was the first fortress of stone in the northeast of Russia at that time. This event allowed to reflect the claim of Tver and Novgorod to Moscow, and also to escape from the campaigns of Olgerd, the Lithuanian prince.

In the middle of the 14th century, the Horde weakened due to the struggle for the throne of the khan, and Moscow's forces, on the contrary, increased. Even the crushing of the Moscow army in 1377 near Nizhny Novgorod could not consolidate the success of the Tatars. A year later, Begich's army on the river Vozhene, which in Ryazan, was defeated by Dmitry Donskoy. His biography, connected with the Battle of Kulikovo, begins precisely with this battle. It served as a prelude to future events.

In 1380, the hostility in the Horde finally ended with the coming to power of Mamai, who immediately began to strengthen his position in Russia. First of all, he made an alliance with Jagiello, the Lithuanian prince, and led the troops to the Russian lands. In order to detain the enemy, the prince's squads assembled in Kolomna and from there moved to the Tatars. Here, and showed himself as a talented commander Dmitry Donskoy. Biography reports that he accepted an unexpected, unconventional decision for that time: to meet with Mamai on the opposite bank of the Don, which the khan considered his territory. Also, the prince tried to prevent the Horde from joining the Lithuanian army. For the bravery shown in this battle, for the merits of the commander, Prince received a new nickname - Dmitry Donskoy.

A brief biography of him does not always mention battles with the Khan Tokhtamysh. Defeated Mamai hid in the Cafe (now Theodosius), where he was killed. The Khan Tokhtamysh began to rule over the Horde . In 1382 Oleg Ivanovich, a Ryazan prince, showed him the passage through the Oka. Taking advantage of this help, Tokhtamysh unexpectedly attacked Moscow. Even before that, Donskoy left the capital for the northern lands to collect a new militia. Residents of the city as they could, defended it, while fighting with the boyars, who tried to escape from Moscow in panic. Two enemy assaults they managed to repel thanks to the use of new cannons (so-called mattresses), for the first time forged from iron in Russia. Tokhtamish understood that the city could not be taken by storm, especially since Dmitry Donskoy was soon to approach. Then he resorted to deception, telling Muscovites that he needed not them and the city, but only the prince. Promising not to repair the robbery, Tokhtamysh tricked into Moscow, defeated her and forced to pay a huge tribute again.

The historical mission of Dmitry Donskoy is, first of all, in the unification of the lands of Russians. For the first time Moscow appeared as a strong, powerful economic and political center, from which the organization of battles against the yoke of the Golden Horde and the idea of reuniting several lands proceeded. Thanks to the victory in the Kulikovo battle, the amount of tribute became much smaller. The Horde recognized the fact that Moscow occupies the main place among other Russian lands. The power of the Horde became not the same as before. The Russian people believed that the Tatars could still be defeated.

Vladimir principality Dmitry before his death handed Basil, his son. In the will of the principality was spoken of as a Moscow patrimony, which indicated the immediate merger of Moscow and Vladimir lands. And this happened for the first time without the permission of the Horde.

On the other hand, Dmitry Donskoi brought not only positive changes during his reign. The biography, for example, set forth by Kostomarov, testifies to the losses of the western lands, the destruction of wars with the Lithuanian principality. A large territory was destroyed by Tokhtamysh and payment of an unbearable tribute. Kostomarov considered this period one of the most unhappy and sad in the history of the Russian people.

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