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The Khazars in the Shadows of Kievan Political Thought

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Chapter Summary

The Kievan Rus' had developed much more than a simple or perfunctory interest in the texts of the Old Testament. Their preoccupation with biblical writing, which became one of the foundations for the formulation of a Vladimirian-Jaroslavian historiographic tradition, stems not solely from their conversion to Christianity and their acquaintance with its literature. The impact of Khazar khagan notions of rulership upon the Rus' would somewhat take the form of a residual effect rather than a direct contemporaneous influence. A more exhaustive scrutiny of Near Eastern sources reveals the presence of imprecision in their rendering of a definition for Khazar khagan. This chapter demonstrates a uniform belief and willingness to admit the independence and sovereign rule of the Kievan princes, and these same accounts list no impediments placed upon their powers. It establishes the dependence of the Kievan princes upon a Khazar khagan.

Keywords: Christianity; Eastern Slavs; Jaroslavian historiographic tradition; Khazar khagan; Kievan Rus'



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