{short description of image}  
 
   
 

MILITARY HISTORY OF RUSSIA

 
 

John Sloan


 
 

In 1970 I was a student at the U.S. Army Institute for Advanced Russian Studies at Garmisch Germany. I had been collecting material for a too-ambitious idea for preparing a military history of Russia for over 10 years at that point. So I decided to write the required student paper at the Institute as a preliminary bibliographic study of the sources I had read at that point. My subequent career assignments as a manager of analysts and instructor of courses on Soviet military strategy, operational art, and tactics prevented more than occasional efforts to expand on this project. The student paper has been in my file cabinet since 1970. Obviously since then there has been a deluge of valuable articles, books and monographs published on the general subject of military affairs in Russia. But there is still not comprehensive and focused book on the entire course of the military history of Russia. Perhaps such a task is impossible. Recently, with the advent of the Internet and Web publishing, I have been formating materials from my files for such readership as may be interested.


 
 

One major problem with the study of military history is that it is two-sided. Campaigns and battles involve at least two opposing parties. Thus the full study of military events at the level of campaigns and battles must be approached from all sides, using the sources from all participants. Given the inherent language problems plus archival access required for this, the result has been that much writing on military affairs is done from only one side, or at least does not adequately exploit the sources from all sides. This has been especially true of Russian military history. Books written by western European and American authors that include campaigns or battles involving Russia mostly have not included Russian sources. Western books on general military history frequently don't even include Russia at all. (Nor of course China or India).
On the other hand Russian books and articles on Russian military history frequently have other problems, as discussed in the report. Among these is often inadequate use of Turkish, Swedish, Polish and similar foreign archival material.



 
 

Another problem exists at the broader level of comparative analysis of general military history. Evaluation of broad issues such as development of firearms; changes in tactical concepts and practices; recruitment, education, and personnel policies; strategic principles; development of fortifications; the influence of geography or demographics on military responses; and many more such topics require knowledge not only of Russian military history, but also Western and Oriental military history. Again, the result - especially circa 1970 - was that neither Russian nor Western discussions of these topics lacked comparative analysis.

 
{short description of image}

Here is the introduction to the study of Russian military history that I prepared in 1970.

 
{short description of image}

Here is the annotated bibliography that comprised the bulk of this report.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a chronology of military events from 868 to 1604 to which I am adding

 
{short description of image}

Here is the manuscript I wrote in 1970's on Russian military history of the 14th to 16th centuries.

 
{short description of image}

Here is the continuation - just the chronology of military events from 1604 - 1689

 
{short description of image}

Here is a summary translation of Chernov's book

 
{short description of image}

Here are graphics depicting the complex nature of the conflicts in which Russia and its neighbors were engaged in various centuries.

 
{short description of image}

This is a link to the directory of articles on Russian army history- these continue to increase

 
{short description of image}

This is a link to the directory of articles on Russian military history - these also continue to increase

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovni's map of Kievan Rus in 9th century

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovni's map of Kiev in the 10th century

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovnik's diagram that depicts the armed force of the early Slavs - Svatoslav and Igor on the right and the high command - that is from the prince to his two forces - his druzhina and the city militia.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to Beskrovniios map of the Battle of Dorosta in 971 AD

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to the listing of medieval Russian princes.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a review of Alexander Filjushkin's fine biography of Ivan IV

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to Dianne Smith's book on Muscovite military - Army of Ivan the Terrible

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a review of Brian Davies' book Warfare, state and society on the Black Sea Steppe 1500 -1700

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a review of Carol Stevens' book Russia's Wars of Emergence 1460-1730

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to article on the Battle of Kalka river in 1223

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a general map of Eastern Europe in 13th century that shows Alexander Nevski's campaigns and those of the Mongols

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovni map showing details of Alexander Nevski's campaigns against the Swedes and Livonian knights

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to map of the Battle on the Neva River against the Swedes

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to map of the Battle in 1242 on lake Peipus (Chud) in which Alexander defeated the Livonian knights.

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to large painting of Alexander Nevski by Zubov commissioned by Xenophon group.

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting the battle of Grunval'd (Tannenburg) in 1410 in which the Teutonic knights were decisively defeated by the combined Polish, Lithuanian and Russian - Tatar forces.

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to the map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting the overall campaign of 1410 in which the Lithuanians and Russians defeated the Teutonic knights at Tannenburg

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting Ivan III's campaign against Novgorod in 1471

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting Ivan III's campaigns against the Crimean Tatars, the Great Horde and into Livonia

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to the encyclopedia entry on Charles XI of Sweden

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to the encyclopedia entry on Charles XII of Sweden

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to the encylopedia entry on Charles XIII of Sweden

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to the encyclopedia entry on Charles XIV of Sweden

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a list of the rulers of Kazan khanate

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a list of the Khans of the Golden Horde

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to encyclopedia article on King Alexander of Poland

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to encyclopedia article on history of Poland - includes period of conflict with Moscow

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to encylopedia article on King Sigismund I of Poland

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to encyclopedia article on King Sigismund II of Poland

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to encyclopedia article on King Sigismund III of Poland

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to encyclopedia article on history of Smolensk

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Steve Stinmetz's article on the Cossacks

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to Joe Walukonis' article on the medieval Lithuanian army

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to Razin's illustration of artillery inspection by Ivan IV

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to illustration of diorama in the Artillery Museum in St. Petersburg of the siege of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to another illustration of diorama in the Artillery Museum in St. Petersburg of the siege of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to another illustration of diorama in the Artillery Museum in St. Petersburg of the siege of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to illustration of a sisngle panel of a gulai gorod

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to another illustration of a single panel of a gulai gorod

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to an illustration of a gulai gorod in action in the field

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to John Sloan's essay on the siege of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a map of the Siege of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration of the siege towers used at siege of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is a map showing Ivan's campaign routes to the siege of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration showing an aerial view of the siege of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration showing a plan of the walls of Kazan

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to map of the siege of Kazan from Razin's history

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a map of the siege of Kazan from a German book

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a diagram depicting artillery emploaced in field fortification for siege.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a diagram depicting a siege tower with embrasures for mounting cannon

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a diagram depicting a field fortification constructed as a redan- the caption writes 'defense point'

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a diagram depicting a field fortification as an outer work in front of the ditch of a city wall.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a a view of Kazan during the siege of 1552

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a banner of Ivan IV now in Hermitage

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration from Razin of Ivan's artillery in action

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration from Razin of an artillery crew

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a map of phase one of Ivan's campaigns in Livonia

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a map of phase two if Ivan's campaigns in Livonia

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to encyclopedia article on King Stephen Bathory

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to diagram of Bathory's siege of Pskov

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to an illustration chart of the Muscovite armed forces organization in the 16th century

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to an illustration diagram of the Muscovite march formation

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an article by John Sloan on documents on Kulikovo battle

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a diagram of Muscovite order of battle employed by Dmitri Donskoi and contemporaries

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to diagram of typical Tatar- Mongol order of battle as at Kulikovo battle

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a diagram showing the dispositions of both sides during Kulikovo battle

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a diagram showing the routes of march prior to the Kulikovo battle

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a painting of Dmitri Donskoi comissioned by Xenophon

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a painting of the battle of Kulikovo in the Russian Museum to military uniforms

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to Oglobin's article on the Battle of Kletzk in 1706

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to description of the Battle of Bortenovo in 1317 with links to a painting of the battle

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovni map of Russia in 17th century

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovni map of Russia in 18th century

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Muscovite command organization in 16th century

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to tables depicting the strength by categories of the Russian army in the 16th to 17th centuries

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to diagram depicting Muscovite formation deployed for battle

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a map showing Muscovite defense lines and Ivan's campaign routes.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a schematic drawing of a medieval Muscovite cavalryman with names of the parts of his armor

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a schematic drawing of a medieval Muscovite warrior on foot with names of the parts of his armor

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an article by Richard Sanders on the Streltzi

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration of a group of streltzi from Viskovatov

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration of a Cossack from Viskovatov

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration of a Cossack from Viskovatov

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration of a Cossack from Viskovatov

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration of a Cossack from Viskovatov

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an illustration of a Cossack from Viskovatov

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to map depicting the Russian fortified frontier lines and the Tatar raids of the 1630's.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to map depicting the fortified Russian frontier lines and the Tatar raids of 1643-47.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to map from Beskrovni's Atlas of Russian military history showing in blue the typical attack routes from Crimea. The Nogai Tatars had other routes nearer the Volga. It shows in solid red the first defensive lines as of 1571 and in dotted red some of the later lines up to the reign of Boris Gudunov. More extensive and elaborate defensive lines were built further south during the first half of the 17th century.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a plan map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting the Moscow Kremlin as it looked at the beginning of the17th century It also shows the line of the earlier Kremlin wall when the area was much smaller. We have many photos of the Kremlin over time on the web.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to map from Beksronvni's Atlas depicting the siege of the Trinity-Sergiev monastery by the Polish force in 1608-1610. We have many photos of the monastery on our web site.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting the Swedish and Polish interventions during the 'Time of Trobles' and the counter offensive led by Prince Pozharski and Kuzma Minin.

 
{short description of image}    
{short description of image}

Here is a link to map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting the 'liberation' war in the Ukraine by Cossacks of Khmel'nitski in 1640's.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to the map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting the Russ-Polish of 1654-55

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to the map from Beskrovni's Atlas depicting the campaign of Chmel'nitsii and Tatar allies against the Polish force of Jan Kasimir at Zborov in 1649

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a partial translation of Epifanov article on reforms of Peter I.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a selection from Patrick Gordon's Diary (The whole diary is now being translated into Russian and published in multiple volumes)

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an article on Patrick Gordon

 
{short description of image}

Here is a ink to Col Lukava's essay on the Categories of War

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a partial translation of Telpukovski's book on the Great Northern War

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to my review of Edward Phillip's book on the founding of Russian's navy by Peter for use against Azov

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to Col.Tushin's article on the construction of naval and other ships in Russia prior to Peter.

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to a bibliography compiled of references to the Great Northern War

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to an essay on the Great Northern War - the introduction with further links to chapters

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovni's map of the first battle of Narva - 1700 - in which Peter was besieging the city and was routed by Charles XII

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovni's map of the second battle of Narva - 1704- in which Peter returned and successfully besieged the city

 
{short description of image}

Here is link to Beskrovni's map; of the battle at Lesna in which Peter crucially damaged Charles' supply and reenforcement train.

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a review of Englund's excellent book on the Battle of Poltava

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a memorial monument for Poltava battle

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to another memorial monument to Poltava

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a Beskrovni map of the Battle of Poltava

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a Beskrovni map of the campaign that led to Poltava

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a painting depicting Peter at Poltava

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a diagram showing the organization of Peter's army

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to a directory containing photos from Viskovatov of uniforms of Peter's army

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to an article describing the Peter and Paul Fortress in St. Petersburg

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to Beskrovni's map depicting campaigns in the Great Northern War

 
{short description of image}

Here is a link to Beskrovni's map of the naval battle of Hangut in 1714 and Peter took the offensive into the Baltic

 

Return to Xenophon. Return to Ruscity. Return to Rushistory. Return to Ukraine.