Yevgeny PCHELOV, Cand. Sc. (Hist.), Russian State University of the Humanities (Moscow)
According to the Tale of Bygone Years (the earliest extant annalistic collection of the 12th century), the alliance of the Slavonic and Finno-Ugric tribes, inhabiting the territory of the present Novgorod Region, called upon the Varangian brothers to defend their towns and ploughlands in 862. The author writes: "They came, and the elder brother Rurik settled down in Novgorod, another brother Sineus in Beloozero and the third one Truvor in Izborsk." It is the first brother who gave birth to the family of great princes, which ruled over our country for many centuries. Therefore, the said year became a starting point for Russian statehood, the fact, which is embodied in the wonderful monument "Millennium of Russia" (sculptors Mikhail Mikeshin and Ivan Shreder, architect Viktor Gartman) erected in Veliky Novgorod in 1862.
One page of the "Tale of Bygone Years".
The Tale of Bygone Years expressly associated our first princes with the inhabitants of the Scandinavian region, whom it referred to, for example, as Svears (Swedes), Normans (Norwegians) and also Rus*: "they were called Ruses by Varangians, though before they were Slavs." However, in the mid-18th century a conflict developed among national historians between supporters and opponents of the foreign origin of the ruling dynasty. But what is its history?
This problem was first scientifically analyzed by German philologist and researcher of the Russian antiquities, Acad. of the Petersburg AS (from 1725) Gottlieb-Ziegfried Bayer, who published in 1735 The Work on the Varangians in Latin as was accepted at that time. Based on the annals, foreign sources of the 9th-11th centuries, and what is more, on linguistic research, the author substantiated the Scandinavian origin of these natives from the Baltic region who were called Norsemen in Western Europe. The modern historical science recogniz ... Читать далее