Siege of Ryazan

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Siege of Ryazan
Part of Mongol Invasion of Rus
Rejection Tatars Peace.jpeg
The Ryazan's prince rejects the Mongols' tribute demand.
DateDecember 16-December 21, 1237
Old Ryazan

54°23′49″N 40°25′39″E / 54.39694°N 40.42750°E / 54.39694; 40.42750
Result Mongol victory; Ryazan burned to the ground[1]
Mongol Empire Principality of Ryazan
Commanders and leaders
Batu Khan Yuriy Igorevich [1]
Unknown; probably large Unknown
Casualties and losses
Unknown; not very heavy Nearly the entire population of Ryazan

Ryazan was the first Russian city to be besieged by the Mongol invaders under Batu Khan.


In the autumn of 1237 the Mongol Horde led by Batu Khan invaded the Rus' principality of Ryazan. The Prince of Ryazan, Yuriy Igorevich, asked Yuriy Vsevolodovich, the prince of Vladimir, for help, but did not receive any.[2]


The Mongols defeated the vanguard of the Ryazan army at the Voronezh River[2] and on December 16[3], 1237 besieged the capital of the principality (this site is now known as Old Ryazan, Staraya Ryazan, and is situated some 50 km from the modern city of Ryazan).[1] The townspeople repelled the first Mongol attacks. The Mongols then used catapults to destroy the city's fortifications. On December 21, Batu Khan's troops stormed the walls, plundered Ryazan, killed Prince Yuriy and his wife, executed nearly all of the city's inhabitants, and burned the city to the ground.[1]"But God saved the Bishop, for he had departed the same moment when the troops invested the town."[4]


Population of Ryazan in XIII century is hard to estimate. Archaeological excavations on the site of Old Ryazan in 1915 and 1979, uncovered 97 severed heads on the site of the former church, and 143 bodies in several mass graves, all of whom met violent deaths during the sack of the city[5].


The writer of the Rus chronicle described the aftermath of the battle with the words "There was none left to groan and cry". The city of Old Ryazan was completely destroyed and was never rebuilt.

After the destruction of Ryazan, Batu Khan's horde pushed on into the principality of Vladimir-Suzdal.


  1. ^ a b c d Basil Dmytryshyn, Medieval Russia:A source book, 850-1700, (Academic International Press, 2000), 147.
  2. ^ a b Basil Dmytryshyn, Medieval Russia:A source book, 850-1700, 146.
  3. ^ "Новгородская летопись". Retrieved 2018-02-24.
  4. ^ Michell, Robert; Shakhmaton, A. A.; Forbes, Nevill; Beazley, C. Raymond (Charles Raymond) (1914). The chronicle of Novgorod, 1016-1471. University of California Libraries. London, Offices of the society.
  5. ^ Petrovič,, Darkevič, Vladislav; Петрович,, Даркевич, Владислав (1993). Putešestvie v drevnûû Râzanʹ zapiski arheologa. Râzanʹ: Novoe vremâ. ISBN 5854320088. OCLC 489730332.