View Full Version : What if Russia would have been united under Novgorod and not by Moscow ?

13 Nov 07,, 21:09
Next year there will be 530 years from the moment that that Ivan III added the republic of Novgorod with Moscovia .
What would have been the history of Russia if the opposite would have happened ?

It was a republic in sense of 13th century Italian cities , not in today´s context of course but still - it was one of major players in 10-15th century Russia . It was never conquered by Mongols , it had steady commercial and political ties with Europe .

Arguably had Russia been united under Novgorod it would have not been isolated from Renaissance , from the spiritual and technological progress , ideas of humanism and reformation .
Even the birth of real russian literature would have probably been two and half centuries earlier .

Well history went the other way and the fighting between Novg. and Moscow ended for citizens of Novgorod in gutters of history .

So here are some questions .
How would look the Russian Empire in Novgorod model ?
Would it been accomplishable at all , or in other words - did the Novg. even had a chance against Moscow ?

Veliky Novgorod - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novgorod)
Novgorod Republic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novgorod_Republic)

13 Nov 07,, 21:30
Good post, braindead.:) I'll have to admit ny ignorance here and say that I know precious little of Russian history.:redface:

15 Nov 07,, 08:15
I think that eventually the Republic would have succumbed to a monarchy or collapsed from internal divisions the way most Republics have as they have grown into empires. Muscovy collapsed several times, only to come back.

15 Nov 07,, 09:59
Instead of a huge empire Russia would have remained a small European nation. small relative to it's current size. It probably would still be one of the largest and more populous nations in Europe. There would have been less interest in expansion east ward.

16 Nov 07,, 00:03
Nothing actually would've been different. Similar challenges demand similar answers.

P.S. such topics make sense only if we discuss two events with non-zero possibility. In this case, one event is true fantasy - Novgorod could never become the center of new Russian state, just because Novgorod was what it was - politically unstable republic with many internal problems, hardly able to rule the whole Rus'.

16 Nov 07,, 07:10
I´m not suggesting it would have remained a republic , could have been a monarchy for all I care . But probably it would have not isolated itself up to Peter The Great´s times . Would it have expanded to Siberia and South ? Probably . Open spaces tempt explorers and expeditions .
But cultural difference would have been immense .

09 Dec 07,, 23:02
Vast lands to explore and conquer in the East would still be there, although the explorers would be Novgord boyars, who would have a privilege to keep their beards;)

The basic premise of the foreign policy, though, would remain intact. As Catherine the Great once put it - I have no way to defend my borders, but extend them.