Irina was the daughter of the Russian landlord Fyodor Ivanovich Godunov belonging to the minor nobility and his first wife Stepanida Ivanovna . Little is known about the background of the choice made by Tsar Ivan IV to be the wife of his son Fyodor, who was still behind his brother Ivan in the line of succession. Irina's brother, Boris Godunow , was one of Ivan IV's confidants at the court of the tsars, there is evidence that he had been there since around 1570. The wedding with Fyodor probably took place around 1580. The husband and since the violent demise of his brother Ivan, who had been slain by the tsar with the scepter himself in 1581, the heir to the throne of the Russian Empire, was considered to be less gifted and weak-willed. He succeeded the throne in 1584 after the death of Tsar Ivan IV. Particularly in the early years, the marriage was under great pressure to beget an heir to the throne, as claims to the throne were also made for the younger half-brother of Fjodor, Dimitri . There were several miscarriages and pilgrimages were made by the Tsarina to obtain an heir to the throne. In June 1592 a daughter Feodosia was finally born to them. But the child died after about two years in 1594.
After the death of her husband in 1598, Irina retired to the Novodevichy Convent in the south of Moscow and left power to her brother Boris Godunov, who had been able to gain more and more power since the beginning of the reign of Tsar Fyodor . There she took the name Alexandra as a nun and lived there until her death in 1603. She found her final resting place in the Archangel Michael Cathedral in the Moscow Kremlin.
|ALTERNATIVE NAMES||Godunova, Fyodorovna Irina (full name); Alexandra (religious name); Годунова, Ирина Фёдоровна (Russian spelling)|
|BRIEF DESCRIPTION||Russian tsarina and wife of tsar Fyodor I.|
|DATE OF BIRTH||around 1557|
|DATE OF DEATH||around October 26, 1603|
|Place of death||Moscow|