Vasily IV (Russia)

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Vasily IV. Ivanovich Shuisky

Wassili IV. Ivanovich Schuiski ( Russian Василий Иванович Шуйский , scientific transliteration Vasilij Ivanovič Šujskij ; born  September 22, 1552 ; † September 12, 1612 at Gostynin Castle) was Russian tsar from 1606 to 1610.



Prince Shuisky came from a Novgorod boyar family that went back to the Rurikid princes of Suzdal. In 1587 he took part in the courtly intrigue struggle against Boris Godunov and fell out of favor. He returned to Moscow in 1605 and initially stood on the side of the fake Dimitri , an impostor who posed as the surviving Tsarevich Dmitri . Vasily Shuisky himself had headed the investigation committee into his death; it can therefore be ruled out that he actually believed this story. He was the leader of a Bojarenaufstandes that during the nine-day wedding celebrations Pseudodmitris I. on May 17, 1606 Marina Mniszkowa , the daughter of the Polish voivode of Sandomierz, broke out.

In a chronicle it says:

“The Muscovites rushed at the Poles with wild howls, full of anger because of their licentiousness and greed. In their hands they only had axes and spears, but in their hearts they had boundless anger. "


Vasily married Elena Repnina in the first marriage and Marija Buinossowa-Rostovskaya in the second marriage. Both marriages remained childless.


After the assassination of the fake Dmitri, the boyars proclaimed him tsar, against the resistance of the people who rose up under Ivan Isayevich Bolotnikov . Under his rule there was an intensification of the disputes between the various high nobility genders. In October 1607 Vasily succeeded in decisively defeating Bolotnikov's insurgent army. The unstable domestic political situation was soon exploited by the second fake Dimitri , who met open support from the high nobility and maintained a counter-government in Tushino in June 1608 . In the Wiborg Agreement of 1609, Vasily was from Karl IX. The King of Sweden assured military aid with which he succeeded in defeating the fake Dmitri.

It ruled, largely thanks to Swedish support, until 1610, when Polish troops again invaded Russia. He was overthrown and sheared to become a monk. Vasily Schuiski died in Polish captivity in 1612.

His reign fell during the so-called Smuta , the time of turmoil, which began in 1598 with the death of Fjodor I and only ended in 1613 with Mikhail Romanov's accession to the throne .


  • Helmut Neubauer; in: Hans-Joachim Torke (Ed.): The Russian Tsars 1547–1917 ; Munich: CH Beck, 1999; ISBN 3-406-42105-9 .
predecessor Office successor
Pseudodimitri I. Tsar of Russia
1606 - 1610
Władysław IV.