More than a thousand years ago, on the vast territories stretching from the Carpathian Mountains in the west to the Volga River in the east, from the Black Sea in the south to the White Sea in the north one of the largest and mightiest mediaeval states, Kiev Rus, appeared. Many of the rulers of the Old Rus played an important role in its development.

Oleg the Prophetic (879—912) began to trade with Byzantium. Olga and Svyatoslav also tried to enter into relations with the countries in the west. One of the most important figures in the history of Kiev Rus was Vladimir the Great (980-l015). He founded new towns and joined some new tribes to the state. He was the ruler of the largest country in Europe. His greatest achievement was christening of the country It became the only state religion and was of great political importance. It helped to unite the country and raise the authority of the ruler. The new religion also helped to develop the cultural life of the state. It influenced the international standing of Kiev Rus, which became more stable and convincing. Centuries will pass and on the part of the territory of Kiev Rus a new independent state, Ukraine, with its capital — Kiev will appear. In Kiev there is a monument to Vladimir the Great, who played an important role in its development,


to stretch — протягиваться

mediaeval — средневековый

Byzantium — Византия

an achievement — достижение

christening — крещение

authority — авторитет

international standing — международная позиция

stable and convincing — стабильный и уверенный

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