logo
 

ARMY OF IVAN IV

 
  {short description of image}  
 

This shows the administrative organization for comand and control of the Muscovite armed forces. At the top is the 'bol'shoi voyevod'=field commander ; the 'voyevod gulyavi '=commander of the gulai gorod; 'voyevod u naryada'=commander of the artillery and trains; then the 'bol'shoi polk'=main body (battl); the 'storozhevoi polk'=security unit; the 'zasadnii polk=ambush unit; the golova strelitskii=commander of the streltzi; beneath him are the several 'strelyetskii prikazi'=units of 800 to 1000 strelets which are in turn divided into 100's and 10's; with the main body are the 'peredovoi polk=lead body or advanced guard; the 'polk levoi ruki and polk pravoi ruki '=left and right wing bodies; they are organized into sotni=100's and desyatki=10's; and at bottom the 'artoul' or trains. Typically during the earlier middle ages the 'national' army if assembled for a major campaign would be composed of the forces brought by various serving princes which would be amalgamated into the total force. But by the reign of Ivan IV practically all forces with the exception of native (Tatar) or cossack units were already contained in one armed force. While the term 'polk' in modern Russian is translated into 'regiment', in the medieval army the 'polk' was not a standing body regiment - rather, the term should be translated into the western term 'battle' or corps.

 
     

Return to Xenophon. Return to Ruscity. Return to Rushistory. Return to Ukraine. Please take a minute to leave a note at our guestbook.