Vasilisa Melentyeva

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Vasilisa Melentyeva
Vasilisa Melentieva.jpeg
Portrait by Nikolai Nevrev in 1886
Tsaritsa of All Russia
Tenure 1579
Spouse Ivan IV of Russia
Dynasty Rurik
Died 1579
Religion Eastern Orthodox

Vasilisa Melentyeva (Russian: Васили́са Меле́нтьева) (died 1579) was the sixth wife of Ivan the Terrible. Before her marriage to Ivan, Vasilisa is recorded to have been a widow of a prince serving in the Livonian War. Though Ivan considered her beautiful and sweet natured, he discovered her a few months after their marriage having an affair with a prince named Devletev. Ivan forced Vasilisa to watch her lover be impaled, and as further punishment, confined her to life in a cloister.


  • Troyat, Henri Ivan le Terrible. Flammarion, Paris, 1982
  • de Madariaga, Isabel Ivan the Terrible. Giulio Einaudi editore, 2005
Russian royalty
Title last held by
Anna Vasilchikova
Tsaritsa of All Russia
Title next held by
Maria Dolgorukaya