Ivan IV Ivan the terrible (1530-1584)


  • An absolute ruler of Russia
  • He was claimed grand prince of Moscow at the age of three in 1533 when his father died
  • First to be claimed tsar of Russia in 1587
  • He seized power and crowned himself czar at age 16.
  • He married Anastasia who was related to a boyar family (Romanovs)

Ivan's "bad period" began in 1570 after his wife died. He accused the boyars of poisoning his wife. Ivan turned against the boyars and created a secret police. He began executing many boyars and seized their estates.

  • He killed his oldest son (heir) in a violent quarrel
  • Said to have died in 1584 while playing chess

Legacy: He expanded Russia, introduced new laws which restricted movement of peasants and solidified his rules, and ordered St. Basil's Cathedral to be built.


Andreyev Nikolay. Britannica. https://www.britannica.com/biography/Ivan-the-Terrible. April 8, 2017.

Yegolav Oleg. Russia beyond the headlines. http://rbth.com/arts/history/2016/10/14/7-facts-about-ivan-the-terrible-the-first-russian-tsar_638895. April 10, 2017.

Russiapedia. http://russiapedia.rt.com/prominent-russians/the-ryurikovich-dynasty/ivan-iv-the-terrible/. April 8, 2017.

History of Russia. http://historyofrussia.org/ivan-the-terrible-facts/. April 8, 2017.

Conflicts. http://www.conflicts.rem33.com/images/Russia/rushist_3.html. April 8, 2017.

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