Turiv-Pynsk principality

Turiv-Pynsk principality. An administrative territory of the 10th to 14th centuries in central Polisia. Its capital was Turiv. The larger, northern part was settled by Drehovichians, and the smaller, southeastern part by Derevlianians. Its inhabitants, who lived by farming, hunting, fishing, and beekeeping, were protected from nomad attacks by thick forests and swamps. The land and water routes from Kyiv to Poland and the land route from Kyiv to Lithuania and the other Baltic countries contributed to the principality's economic and political importance. The oldest cities are mentioned in the medieval chronicles: Turiv (under the year 980), Pynsk (1097), Berestia (1019), Chortoryisk (1110), Klechesk (Kletsk, 1128), Sluchesk (Slutsk, 1116), and Mozyr (1155). From the 9th century the territory was within Kyiv's sphere of influence, and during the reign of Volodymyr the Great it became part of Kyivan Rus’. The first ruler was Volodymyr's son, Sviatopolk I (988–1015). In the 11th century, because of its ties with the West, it was one of the more important principalities of Kyivan Rus’. In 1052 Yaroslav the Wise installed his son Iziaslav Yaroslavych there. Iziaslav Yaroslavych was succeeded by his sons, Yaropolk Iziaslavych (1078–86) and Sviatopolk II Iziaslavych (1087–1113). Then the principality was ruled directly by the grand prince in Kyiv until Yurii Yaroslavych, a descendant of Sviatopolk II Iziaslavych, wrested Turiv from Kyiv's control (1157). In the second half of the 12th century, during Yurii's sons' reign, the principality declined and eventually was divided into appanages: Sviatopolk got Turiv, Ivan, Dubrovytsia, Yaropolk, Pynsk, and others, Slutsk and Kletsk. In the second quarter of the 13th century those small principalities came under the influence of the Principality of Galicia-Volhynia, which was ruled by Danylo Romanovych. After the Mongol invasion of 1240 the area came under the control of the Golden Horde, and in the 14th century, under Lithuanian rule. In the mid-16th century the territory became part of the Polish Commonwealth.

Dovnar-Zapol’skii, M. Ocherk istorii Krivichskoi i Dregovichskoi zemel’ do kontsa XII st. (Kyiv 1891)

Mykhailo Zhdan, Arkadii Zhukovsky

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 5 (1993).]

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