Something like this can be imagined Nogai - perhaps the most prominent ruler of the Steppe of the late XIII century
Realizing that the Horde is a long time, Leo already from 1262 began to defend a new policy of submission and cooperation with the steppes. This made it possible not only to secure the eastern borders, but also to receive very specific military support from the khan, who rarely offended his faithful vassals in this regard. It was because of this that he forgot the title of King of Russia, which became one of the reasons for Burundi’s actions: despite his repetition in correspondence, Leo did not crown, continued to call himself an official prince and in every way pretended to respect tough but fair power Khan. Soon, such a policy paid off entirely due to a change in the balance of power in the Horde itself.
During the strife in the Mongol Empire, Nogai, one of the Juchids and vassals of Khan Berke, showed himself brightly. He fought a lot, won and lost, and in about 1270, along with his tumen, migrated to the Black Sea and the Dniester and Danube rivers, placing his headquarters in Isakce. It has not yet been established exactly what kind of policy regarding the Golden Horde he pursued. Some historians claim that this year he put himself off from it and decided to create his own state. Others put Nogai’s ambitions much higher, indicating that he was isolated, but in fact he later appeared as the “gray cardinal” of the Horde, subordinating the khans to his will, and wanted to gradually become the ruler of Ulus Jochi, but only after all competitors destroyed, preferably by each other’s hands.
Be that as it may, Nogai’s choice of his “volost” turned out to be nonrandom and very successful. At that time, busy trade routes passed through the mouth of the Danube, both along the river and on land. One of these routes was the northern one, which came from the territory of the Galicia-Volyn principality. I have a leg that it was beneficial to control and develop this trade, for which at one time he even attacked Genoese trading posts in Crimea and practically interrupted trade with the Horde, redirecting flows directly to Egypt, due to which the number of Saracen merchants increased sharply in Eastern Europe, which even founded their own quarter in Lviv. In addition, Nogai by military force established his dominance over Byzantium and Bulgaria, married the illegitimate daughter of Emperor Mikhail Paleolog and actively collaborated with the sedentary peoples controlled by him, especially the “indigenous” territories of his possessions, where brodniks, hawks and other “freemen” lived, once dependent on Bulgarians and Russians. In the future, these lands will become the principality of Moldova.
Of course, all this pushed Lev Danilovich to cooperate with Nogai, especially in the light of his pro-Horde policy. Moreover, from a certain moment almost all of Russia fell into his vassals, so some kind of interaction was inevitable for them. It could go according to completely different scenarios, since the relations of the Tatars with the Russians were always difficult. But in the case of Leo and Nogay, everything turned out in the best way.
Beklyarbek was very attentive to the one who controlled trade routes from the north, and Leo praised the skillful and effective management policy of his new southern neighbor. Gradually, between them, if not friendship, then close interaction and support in each other's important endeavors arose. Nogai more than once helped the troops of the Galicia-Volyn state and recognized its association under the leadership of Lev Danilovich after the death of Shvarn and Vasilka, which was contrary to the interests of the Horde. In response, Leo also sent his troops to help Nogai, developed trade with him, supported the Horde wars, and actively carried out joint raids on hostile neighbors. Close friendships and an alliance between them continued until the death of both rulers, and the reason for this was not only the personal sympathy of the two rulers, but also mutual benefit. As a result of this, Romanovichi and the Tatar beklyarbek Nogai several decades after the invasion of Batu formed a very effective and mutually beneficial symbiosis, which will be difficult to find analogues in Russia in terms of effectiveness.
Peak of the development of the Galicia-Volyn state
Lev Danilovich Palace in Lviv, reconstruction
The skillful rule of Lev Danilovich, a successful foreign policy, coupled with close relations with Nogai, who at that time was the main figure in Eastern Europe, allowed the Galician-Volyn state to survive its new heyday, the largest and, alas, the last. First of all, this was reflected in the territorial expansion of the Romanovich’s influence over the lands of Russia, about which there is, if not absolute, but quite significant information. Over time, for example, under the protection of Nogai, Leo annexed Kiev to his possessions. By that time, both the city and the principality had completely lost their role, depended heavily on the steppes who roamed alongside, and could bring little benefit to their ruler, but for the Romanovichs, owning the city was a matter of prestige.
Nogai also returned Romanovich’s control over the lower Dniester, retaining only the most important cities, although it is not possible to establish the exact border between the possessions of the prince and Beklyarbek. There was no particular benefit to him from direct domination of the local settled population, and Leo was a reliable ally, so there was nothing surprising in such an act. The local population, having found themselves under the double patronage of the beclarbek and the prince, truly experienced a heyday: archeology confirms the absence of any ruin of this land at the indicated time, and, conversely, indicates the unusually active construction of cities, villages and the rapid growth of the local population. It is on this basis that, in the next century, the Principality of Moldova will emerge, which can for some time remain a serious force in the region.
In the Galicia-Volyn principality at that time literally everything was booming. A stream of settlers arrived in large numbers from the West, settling in cities or setting up new rural communities. Together with them, “German” law first arrived in Russia - it was under Lev Danilovich that quite European mechanisms of urban and peasant self-government began to take shape, which began to extend to the indigenous population. The introduction of Western agricultural culture and an increase in the number of peasants led to an increase in agriculture, and the growth of cities and urban population further stimulated the development of handicraft production - in this regard, the Galicia-Volyn state has already gone far ahead relative to other Russia. Together with the ongoing development of trade, which was facilitated by double guarantees of security from both the prince and the beclarback, this provided great profits for the treasury, increased the welfare of the population, and allowed talking about the heyday even at a time when the Galicia-Volyn state was divided between Romanovichs .
Small campaigns of Lev Danilovich
As soon as Lev Danilovich was able to unite the Galicia-Volyn state under his leadership, a new period of almost continuous wars began in which he had to take a personal part. True, unlike in the old days, it was no longer a question of restoring his father’s inheritance, and therefore, in addition to defense, it was possible to develop an offensive in neighboring states, which, however, did not end with radical border changes. In addition to major conflicts, such as the war with the Hungarians, there were also small foreign campaigns, primarily related to the support of the Polish allies and the fight against the Lithuanians, who intensified the onslaught from the north.
The first such minor conflict was the Polish campaign in 1271 in alliance with Boleslav the Shy against the Wroclaw Prince Henry IV Probus. It was part of a much larger game, as it was performed with the permission of the Horde and in alliance with the Hungarians, and its goal was to weaken the ally of Przemysl Otakar II, who at that time was the main opponent of the Magyars. Contrary to their own will, the Leo brothers Mstislav Danilovich and Vladimir Vasilkovich participated in this campaign. Both princes were homebodies, preferred to rule their lands peacefully, but Leo, having much more power and authority than them, forced the brothers to submit to their will and fight against the Poles and Czechs together. The following year, a new campaign followed, this time against the Yotvyag, who began to attack the Galician-Volyn outskirts.
In 1275, the Lithuanians of Grand Duke Troiden raided Dorogochin, ravaging this city and killing all its inhabitants. In response, Leo gathered a large army of allies, including the Nogai Tatars, and went to war on Lithuania. Thanks to the support of the beclarbeck, a number of small Russian princes, who were dependent on the Horde, also joined him. The beginning of the campaign was quite successful, it was possible to occupy the city of Slonim, but soon after that a group of allies, led by the Leo brothers, began to sabotage the war in every possible way, fearing the excessive strengthening of the governor of the Galician-Volyn state. In response to this, Leo without their participation took Novogrudok, the former most important city on the border of Russia and Lithuania, after which the brothers finally left it.
The prince had to seek support from someone from outside, as a result of which Vasilko Romanovich, the son of the Bryansk prince, who completely obeyed the will of the Galician prince and Nogai, was imprisoned in Slonim. In 1277, Leo sent his troops under the command of his son Yuri along with the Tatars on a new campaign to Lithuania, but due to the inept command of the prince and continued sabotage from the brothers, the entire campaign was reduced to an unsuccessful siege of Gorodno. After that, for some time, the situation on the border with Lithuania calmed down, and in the ensuing conflict over Krakow, Daniel could even attract Lithuanian soldiers to his side. Nevertheless, relations with the northern neighbor remained difficult, since Lev Danilovich maintained good mutually beneficial relations with the Teutonic Order, while Lithuania continuously fought with the Teutons.
The war in Poland, which began in 1279 for Krakow after the death of Boleslav the Shameful, gained more and more momentum. Discarding all conventions and having, although small, but legal rights to Krakow, Leo himself declared his own claims on the city, and began to prepare for a big war. In the event of victory, he would actually take over the entire south-eastern territory of Poland and put a number of Polish princes in a dependent position, which in the long run could lead to the creation of a powerful Slavic state that could freely compete with any of its neighbors. True, by this he suddenly united all his opponents, primarily Laszlo Kuhn and Leszek Czerny, who had already firmly sat down to rule in Krakow. However, the biggest problem as a result was that they were joined by Mstislav Danilovich and Vladimir Vasilkovich, who deprived their brother of support and actually spied on him in favor of Leszek.
The first campaign, completed in 1279, ended in a major defeat for the Russian-Tatar army, led by Lev Danilovich. Apparently, this outcome was facilitated by his brothers, who acted passively and merged information to the Poles. Seriously beaten, the army of Lev Danilovich was forced to retreat to Lviv. Leszek Cherny with his troops, stepping on the heels of the army of Lev Danilovich, invaded the Principality of Galicia-Volyn and besieged Berestye. Despite the difficult situation, the city was defended, and the Polish prince returned home with nothing. After that, taking advantage of Leo’s main forces diverting to Hungary, Leszek removed the Galicians from the Polish allies from the game, and in 1285 again invaded the Romanovich state - without any particular success. In response, Leo, who returned from Hungary, began to prepare a large campaign with the participation of Nogai in Poland in order to once and for all solve the problem of Krakow.
Lion, Nogai and Telebug
Telebuga was a khan who exalted thanks to intrigues and from the very beginning had a very cool relationship with Nogai. Nevertheless, for the first time, the appearance of reverence was still preserved between them, until in 1287 the next campaign of the Russian-Tatar army in Hungary took place, which the khan decided to lead personally. Already after the invasion of Pannonia, Nogai unexpectedly deployed his troops and took them back to his possessions, after which Leo also left the khan, though most likely with his permission. Having completed the raid on Hungary, Telebuga deployed its horde, but the transition through the Carpathians, instead of the usual occupation, turned into a real punishment, stretching for a month. The mass death of people and horses from starvation led to the fact that the khan brought his army back to the steppe in a very shabby form, which could not but cause his anger.
Without stopping, Telebuga decided in the same year to repeat the campaign - though, already towards Poland. Through the Galicia-Volyn principality, the horde went slowly, each of the Romanovichs was forced to individually report to him. In the process, usually restrained Horde began to slip into looting, including plundering the surroundings of Vladimir-Volynsky. It was clear that Telebug was angry with the Romanovichs in general, and Lev Danilovich in particular. Khan transferred the whole of South-Western Russia to personal dependence on himself and considered appointing Mstislav Danilovich to be senior among the Romanovichs, who showed much more accommodatingness than Leo.
However, the campaign against Poland failed as a result: the horde and Russian troops acted successfully, reached Sandomierz and were going to go to Krakow, abandoned by Leszek Cherny ... But suddenly the news came that Nogai, acting quickly and secretly, led his troops to the city first and had already plundered its surroundings. Telebuga, infuriated by such arbitrariness, deployed the army back to the Steppe. His road lay through the principalities of the Romanovichs, who had recently been allies of Nogai ...
Moving southeast, Telebuga suddenly stopped his horde near Lviv, where Lev Danilovich was, and actually took him into a blockade, not allowing anyone to leave the city or go into it. The blockade lasted two weeks, and as a result, many citizens died of starvation, and the Horde residents plundered the neighborhood. Nevertheless, he did not dare to storm the Telebug, although Mstislav Danilovich was already at his headquarters, ready to take up the principality of his brother after the fall of Lviv. Due to the support of the khan, his position was now stronger than that of his brother, and in 1288 he inherited from childless Vladimir Vasilkovich Volyn, which further strengthened Mstislav. Realizing that the Romanovichs were weakened and the fire of contradictions between them was swollen properly, Telebuga went into the steppe with the whole horde. The Galician-Volyn state has actually broken up.
The situation was far from being the most pleasant. The position of Leo greatly weakened, as well as his military capabilities. Losses are estimated at 20,5 thousand people from two passes of Telebugi through the Principality of Galicia, which was a rather large number. I had to spend a lot of time recovering what was lost. Fortunately, Nogai quickly regained his position in the Horde after the assassination of Telebughi and was in no hurry to sever ties with Lev Danilovich, which could be useful in the event of a military exacerbation. The Nogai factor also prevented Mstislav Danilovich from further conflict with his brother and helped to maintain Leo’s power over the Principality of Galicia.
And again, Poland
In 1288, Leszek Cherny, Prince of Krakow, died, and the struggle for the capital of Poland resumed. Lev Danilovich could no longer personally apply for the principality, since after the decisions of the Khan Telebugi he did not have enough strength for this, however, he also could not allow the appearance of a hostile prince in Krakow. It was decided to support the candidate for Krakow from among the Piasts, which was Boleslav II Plotsky, on whose side a number of other Polish princes also spoke, including the still little-known Vladislav Lokotka at that time.
Another applicant, Henry IV Probus, Prince of Wroclaw, managed to occupy Krakow and leave the garrison there, but after that he behaved extremely frivolously, dismissing the militia and remaining with only one squad. Going back to Silesia, he met with an army of princes allies and suffered a brutal defeat. Following this, the princes besieged Krakow, who continued to remain faithful to Henry. It was at this moment that the Russian rati of Lev Danilovich joined the Poles. In 1289, the prince of Galicia already ravaged Silesia, where he met with the Czech king, Vaclav II, and concluded an alliance treaty with him, renewing relations even from the time of Przemysl Otakar II. In addition, at about this time, Leo finally entrenched in Lublin, joining him to his state.
Shortly afterwards, a large congress of Polish princes followed in Opava. Boleslav II abandoned his claims to Krakow in favor of his ally, Vladislav Lokotka. He was the younger brother of Leszek Cherny, a sworn opponent of Lev Danilovich. This fact did not prevent the Galician prince from concluding an alliance with Vladislav by arranging the marriage of the sister of the Polish prince with Yuri Lvovich. Leo had high hopes for this marriage, hoping that in the future it would lead to the formation of a strong Russian-Polish union.
Heinrich Probus did not give up, and in the same 1289 he was able to assemble a new army and defeat Lokotk's supporters under the walls of Krakow. Vladislav escaped from the city, almost captured, and Leo was forced to take his troops home. However, he was a stubborn man and never gave up after another setback. Already in winter, he returned to Poland at the head of the Russian-Tatar army, again securing the support of Nogai. The campaign was so large-scale and successful that the allied army reached the walls of Ratibor, located in Upper Silesia. Hungarian king Laszlo Kun, who was about to invade Russia at that time, unexpectedly changed his mind, fearing retaliatory actions by the steppes and Russians. Soon after, he was killed.
In 1290, Henry Probus also died, so unexpectedly that any possible applicants for Krakow were not ready for this. And there were two of them: Przemyslaw II of Great Poland and Boleslav I of Opole. Both princes were not friends of Leo, and therefore he remained faithful to his two old allies: Lokotka, who, however, could not yet hope to regain Krakow, and Wenceslas II of Czech. The latter received Krakow in 1291 from Przemyslaw, who fled to Greater Poland with royal regalia, where he was soon crowned king of Poland.
Leo welcomed a similar outcome of events, as this secured his western borders, but did not break off ties with Lokot, although he was already about to fight the Czechs for Krakow. Apparently, Leo did not make the final choice in favor of Vaclav or Lokotka until the end of his life. There is information both about his close relations with the Czech king, and about the Tatar detachments in Lokotka’s troops, and he could get those only through the mediation of one of the Horde vassals, including his relative, who ruled in Lviv. The active participation of Prince Lev Danilovich in Polish affairs ended there.
Map of the Galicia-Volyn state at the end of the XNUMXth century. Establishing precise boundaries is difficult due to lack of information. So, for example, it’s really not clear when the GVK lost Slonim and Novogrudok, which Leo had annexed to his possessions earlier.
After the assassination of Laszlo IV Kuhn in 1290, Hungary began a period of non-feverishness. Meanwhile, the pope was pretty tired news from this state, and in order to restore the former state of affairs, he called the legitimate king of Andras III the Venetian, having achieved his support from a number of magnates and foreigners. The king came to rule with an army at the head, in order to restore order in the country. At the same time, an army of Lev Danilovich came forward to meet him from Transcarpathia, who acted as his ally. Andras, in response, recognized Transcarpathia after the Romanovichs and restored the former Russian-Hungarian alliance.
Good luck seemed to be returning. Mstislav Danilovich died in 1292, and Leo again united the entire Galicia-Volyn state under his authority, and Nogai, thanks to the strengthening of his influence in the Horde after the murder of Telebughi in 1291, obtained permission from Khan Tokhta. It was at this time that the power of Nogai reached a peak, as did his relationship with Lev Danilovich. Invariable loyalty of the prince to beklyarbek, even during the time of the visit to Teleport of Galicia, became a clear illustration of how much the prince appreciated this connection, and Nogai paid him back. It was at this time, most likely, that Leo was transferred control of Kiev. There are references to the fact that Leo at that time ruled the Pereyaslav land on the Left Bank, although, even if this was true, control over these possessions remained weak.
However, Tokhta did not want to be a Nogai puppet and soon began to resist him. In 1298, this led to a real full-scale war. At the beginning of this conflict, Nogay won the victory, but then luck changed him. Tohta, having mobilized all its forces, including the northern Russian principalities under its control, fell upon the rebellious beclarbek in 1300. The first to be hit were the Pereyaslavl and Kiev lands, controlled by Lev Danilovich, who continued to maintain his alliance with Nogai. At the same moment, he lost the eastern possessions, which passed into the hands of the small Olgovichi. This was followed by a general battle of the entire war, in which Nogai, who had gathered a much smaller army, was defeated, was seriously wounded, and soon died. His sons with the remnants of the horde fled towards Galich or Bulgaria, where their brother ruled.
Understanding that soon there could come a reckoning for an alliance with the loser, Lev Danilovich soon after the death of Nogai left for the monastery, transferring power to his son, Yuri. Thus, he allegedly took all the blame for what he had done personally, trying to ward off the wrath of the Horde from his principality - just like his father did. Yuri had to wait for the visit of the Khan and hope for his mercy. Soon after, around 1301-1302, Leo died, already at a very advanced age. He fought all his life: first, together with his relatives, against foreigners, then together with foreigners against relatives. I had to simultaneously show loyalty to my allies and political flexibility in order to survive. Thanks to correctly made bets on the necessary horses, Lev Danilovich was able to achieve the peak of political and territorial development of the Galicia-Volyn state and established itself as one of the most powerful rulers of Eastern Europe. However, after the take-off, a fall follows - and it is not possible to recover after each fall. Especially if the heir was unlucky, as happened with Lev Danilovich.
The ending should ...