Avdeev A.G.



The Russian historiographic sources recognize three probable birth dates of Hadrian, the last Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia in 17th century, i.e.1627, 1637 and 1639. The fourth date, 1636, is not widely recognized. Two epitaphs to the Patriarch Hadrian, both written by Karion Istomin, a major court poet of that time, serve as the main source of information about the life of the head of the Russian Church. The first epitaph is prosaic, mounted on his tomb in the shrine of the heads of the Russian Church in the Assumption Cathedral in the Moscow Kremlin, and the second is poetic, preserved in the papers of the poet. . This paper establishes that the cause of chronological differences were errors in reading and interpreting the date of the Patriarch's death in the prosaic epitaph, which were made in historical studies of the 19th — early 20th century and without cross-checking with the gravestone inscription were reproduced in various publications. A visual study of the prosaic epitaph, conducted by the author in March 2014, indicates that Patriarch Hadrian died on October 2, 1700 at the age of 62 . The same date is written in the poetic epitaph. The “birthday” of Patriarch Hadrian (October 2), also raises doubts; most likely this date originated in the 19th century on the basis of the day of his baptism. The conducted research on the base of combination of archival sources and critical analysis of the writings of historians of the 19th — early 20th centuries established that Patriarch Hadrian was born in 1638.

About the autors:

Alexander Grigoryevich Avdeev, Candidat of Historical Sciences, research fellow, associate professor of the Department of History; history teacher

Place of employment:

St. Tikhon’s Orthodox University; University of Dmitry Pozharsky; Intellectual middle school


e-mail: avdey57@mail.ru

Key words:

history оf the Russian Orthodox Church; patriarchs of Moscow and all Russia; Patriarch Hadrian; Karion Istomin; epigraphy of Moscow Russia