First Advisor

Jon Mandaville

Date of Award


Document Type

Closed Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in History and University Honors






Moscow (Russia) – Historiography, Moscow (Russia) -- Politics and government -- History




This thesis is the culmination of research from over the past three years. It started out with the question: Can the foreign policy of the medieval Muscovite State be fully explained by the concept of Third Rome? Third Rome is a concept of political inheritance whereby Moscow was seen as heir of the religious and political ideology of Byzantium, and, therefore, the Roman Empire. I made an appointment to see the Russian historian Dr. David Goldfrank at Georgetown University. It quickly became apparent that my research, at the time, was inadequate, but with a few suggestions I was sent back on the right path. Yet, I kept thinking that all my research could not have been inadequate. After all, it came from well published historians. I delved deeper into the historiography. The great majority of scholarship that mentioned the concept appeared to validate my original assumption, but recent scholarship by Russian, or more specifically Muscovite, historians countered this assumption. There was a shift in scholarship from those that supported the concept of Third Rome to those that upheld counter views. With such a vast amount of scholarship at my fingertips I sought to organize and explicate how such a shift occurred. The result is this historiographic survey of the concept of Third Rome.


In Copyright. URI: This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).


This thesis is only available to students, faculty and staff at PSU.

Persistent Identifier