Prior to the late tenth century, the princes of the Riurikid dynasty were rulers over the loose collection of pagan Slavic tribes and minor city states that were Kievan Rus. However, in a relatively short period, the dynasty had linked itself and its legitimacy to rule to the Orthodox Christian Church centered in Constantinople.
From 1565-1572, the Oprichnina was a land within Muscovy of Ivanís choosing where he alone held sole power. The Zemschina was the remaining portion of Muscovy that was governed by the state administration.
Mann argues that a rare text of the Skazanie o Mamaevom poboishche comes from an early, fifteenth-century redaction that scholars could never locate—a redaction that is the prototype for all the redactions that have been studied heretofore. He maintains that unique parallels between this redaction and the Slovo o polka Igoreve support the hypothesis that the Igor Tale was an oral epic song in a tradition that actually continued into the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, when oral tales about the Kulikovo Battle (1380) were composed. He places the new parallels in the context of other evidence for oral composition in the Igor Tale.
Muscovite understanding of how the autocratic ruler and his subjects should interact with each other was explicitly expressed in ritualised con- sultations between the sovereign and his counsellors. In my work, I endeavour to answer the question of how these consultations met the ide- ological needs of the autocracy and the requirements of the state adminis- tration.