List of Russian people

List of Russian people
The Millennium of Russia monument in Veliky Novgorod, featuring the statues and reliefs of the most celebrated people in the first 1000 years of Russian history.
Men of enlightenment at the Millennium of Russia
Statesmen at the Millennium of Russia
Military men and heroes at the Millennium of Russia
Writers and artists at the Millennium of Russia

This is a list of people associated with the modern Russian Federation, the Soviet Union, Imperial Russia, Russian Tsardom, the Grand Duchy of Moscow, and other predecessor states of Russia.

Regardless of ethnicity or emigration, the list includes famous natives of Russia and its predecessor states, as well as people who were born elsewhere but spent most of their active life in Russia. For more information, see the articles Russians and Demographics of Russia. For specific lists of Russians, see Category:Lists of Russian people and Category:Russian people.


Statesmen and military


  • Rurik, ruler of Novgorod, progenitor of the Rurikid Dynasty, traditionally the first ruler of Russia
    Vladimir the Great
  • Oleg "the Seer", conqueror of Kiev and founder of Kievan Rus', famous for his wars with Byzantium
  • Igor "the Old", the first historically well-attested Rurikid ruler
  • Olga, the first woman ruler of Rus' (regent), the first Christian among Russian rulers
  • Svyatoslav I, united all East Slavs under Kievan rule and destroyed the Khazar Khaganate
  • Vladimir I "the Great", turned from pagan to saint and enacted the Christianization of Kievan Rus'
  • Yaroslav I "the Wise", reigned in the period when Kievan Rus' reached the zenith of its cultural flowering and military power, founder of Yaroslavl
  • Vladimir II Monomakh, defender of Rus' from Cuman nomads, presided over the end of the Golden Age of Kiev
  • Mstislav I "the Great", the last powerful Grand Prince of Kiev, after his reign Kievan Rus fell into feudal decline
  • Yury I "the Long-Handed", founder of Moscow and the key figure in transition of political power from Kiev to Vladimir-Suzdal
  • Andrey I "the Pious", the first Grand Prince of Vladimir
  • Vsevolod "the Big Nest", the Grand Prince of Vladimir during its Golden Age, had 14 children
  • Yury II, Grand Prince of Vladimir during the Mongol invasion of Rus'
  • Yaroslav II, the first Grand Prince of Vladimir after the Mongol invasion, the first European to travel into Mongolia
  • Alexander Nevsky, Prince of Novgorod and Grand Prince of Vladimir, military hero famous for the Battle of Neva and the Battle of the Ice, patron saint and the Name of Russia
  • Andrey II, brother of Alexander Nevsky, his companion in the Battle of the Ice and the journey to Karakorum, progenitor of the Shuisky family
  • Daniel of Moscow, the first Grand Prince of Moscow
  • Yury of Moscow, also Grand Prince of Vladimir and Novgorod, led early Muscovite expansion
  • Ivan I "the Moneybag", brought wealth and power to Moscow by maintaining his loyalty to the Golden Horde and acting as its chief tax collector in Russia
  • Simeon "the Proud", continued the policies of his father Ivan I, died of the Black Death
    Ivan the Great
  • Ivan II "the Fair", an apathetic ruler who succeeded his brother Simeon
  • Dmitry Donskoy, saint and war hero, the first Prince of Moscow to openly challenge Mongol authority in Russia, famous for the Battle of Kulikovo
  • Vasily I, avoided serious confrontation with the Golden Horde and attempted an alliance with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania
  • Vasily II "the Blind", reigned during the long Muscovite Civil War
  • Ivan III "the Great", reunited the Central and Northern Rus', put an end to the Mongol yoke, brought Renaissance architecture to Russia
  • Vasily III, successfully continued the policies of his father Ivan III
  • Ivan IV, the first Tsar of Russia, called "the Terrible" in the West while more correct translation is "the Awesome", transformed Russia into multiethnic, multiconfessional and transcontinental state
  • Fyodor I, the last Rurikid monarch
  • Boris Godunov, the first non-Rurikid monarch
  • Fyodor II, the second and the last ruler from the Godunov Dynasty, cartographer
  • False Dmitriy I, the first impostor during the Time of Troubles
  • Vasili IV Shuisky, Tsar elected during the Time of Troubles
  • False Dmitry II, the second impostor during the Time of Troubles
  • Mikhail, the first Romanov monarch, oversaw the largest ever expansion of Russia's territory, reaching the Pacific
  • Aleksey, called "the Quietest" despite rather tumultuous reign
  • Fyodor III, founder of the Slavic Greek Latin Academy
  • Tsarevna Sophia, regent during the minority of Ivan V and Peter I
  • Ivan V, until his death was the joint ruler with his brother Peter I
  • Peter I "the Great", the first Russian Emperor, polymath craftsman and inventor, modernized Russian Army and westernized culture, won the Great Northern War, founded the Russian Navy and the new capital Saint Petersburg
  • Catherine I, the first Russian Empress
  • Peter II, attempted partial reversal of Petrine reforms and briefly relocated the capital back to Moscow
  • Anna, famous for building the first ice palace
  • Ivan VI, reigned for a year while a baby, then was deposited and imprisoned
  • Elizabeth, "the Merry Empress" during the era of high Baroque
  • Peter III, pro-Prussian ruler deposited by his wife Catherine II
  • Catherine II "the Great", German-born Russian Empress during the Age of Enlightenment, significantly expanded Russia's territory
  • Paul I (though there was no Paul II), the Grand Master of the Knights Hospitaller
    Catherine the Great
  • Alexander I "the Blessed", oversaw the victory over Napoleon, headed Russia's delegation at the Congress of Vienna
  • Constantine, Grand Duke who abdicated the Russian throne in favour of Nicholas I, which formed a background for the Decembrist Revolt
  • Nicholas I, famous for his conservative policies, oversaw the construction of the first Russian Railways
  • Alexander II "the Liberator", enacted the "Great Reforms" in Russian economy and social structure, including the emancipation reform of 1861
  • Alexander III, "the Peacemaker", oversaw conservative, but progressive and peaceful reign
  • Nicholas II, the last actual Emperor, forced to abdicate after the February Revolution, killed with his family during the Russian Civil War
  • Mikhail II, nominally the last monarch, abdicated the day after Nicholas II

Statesmen of the Tsardom and Empire

Soviet leaders and statesmen

Presidents and contemporary politicians




Air Force


Orthodox leaders

  • Metropolitan Alexius, saint, ruled Russia during Prince Dmitry Donskoy's minority
    Patriarch Kirill
  • Patriarch Alexy I, the longest serving Patriarch in the Soviet era
  • Patriarch Alexy II, the first post-Soviet Patriarch, oversaw the period of major church restoration and religious renaissanse
  • Patriarch Hermogenes, saint, inspired the popular uprising against foreign occupation, putting an end to the Time of Troubles
  • Metropolitan Innocent, saint, missionary in Alaska and the Russian Far East
  • Metropolitan Isidore, attempted a reunion with the Roman Catholic Church, which instead led to independence of the Russian Orthodox Church
  • Patriarch Joachim, founder of the Slavic Greek Latin Academy, the first higher education establishment in Russia
  • Patriarch Job, the last Metropolitan and the first Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia
  • Metropolitan Jonah, saint, the first independent Metropolitan of Moscow and all Russia
  • Patriarch Kirill, current Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia
    Patriarch Philaret
  • Metropolitan Macarius, saint, prominent iconographer
  • Metropolitan Maximus, saint, Metropolitan of Kiev who moved the see of Russian metropolitans to Vladimir
  • Patriarch Nikon, introduced major church reforms which eventually led to a lasting schism in the Russian Orthodox Church, known as Raskol
  • Metropolitan Peter, patron saint of Moscow, moved the see of Russian metropolitans from Vladimir to Moscow
  • Metropolitan Philaret, saint, the principal Russian theologician of the 19th century
  • Patriarch Philaret, de facto ruler of Russia during the minority of his son, Tsar Mikhail
  • Metropolitan Philip, saint and martyr in the reign of Ivan IV
  • Patriarch Pimen, oversaw the end of the persecution of Christianity in the Soviet Union and the 1000th anniversary of the Baptism of Rus'
    Patriarch Tikhon
  • Platon Levshin, president of the Most Holy Synod during the Age of Enlightenment, author of the first systematic course of the history of Russian Orthodox Church
  • Patriarch Sergius, led the Russian Orthodox Church during World War II, when the earlier Soviet militant atheism was scaled down and the Church was re-legalised
  • Stephen Yavorsky, the first president of the Most Holy Synod, which replaced the Patriarchate after Peter I's reign
  • Theofan Prokopovich, the second president of the Most Holy Synod, co-founder of the Russian Academy of Sciences, religious poet and sermon writer
  • Patriarch Tikhon, the first Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia after restoration of the Patriarchate in the early Soviet era

Orthodox saints


Siberian explorers

Explorers of Russian America


Travelers in the tropics

Explorers of Central Asia

Polar explorers


  • Pavel Belyayev, a member of the first two-person space crew
  • Georgy Beregovoy, the oldest human to go into space (by date of birth, 1921)
  • Valery Bykovsky, performer of the longest solo spaceflight
  • Konstantin Feoktistov, a member of the first three-person space crew
  • Yuri Gagarin, the first ever human to travel into space
  • Yevgeny Khrunov, participant of the first dual spacewalk and crew transfer between spacecraft
  • Vladimir Komarov, a member of the first three-person space crew, the first human to die during a space mission (landing accident)
  • Sergei Krikalyov, accumulated most time in space (803 days) during six flights
  • Aleksei Leonov, the first to perform a spacewalk, a member of the first two-person space crew, space painter
    Aleksei Leonov
  • Musa Manarov, the first to spend in orbit over a year
  • Andrian Nikolayev, participant of the first parallel flight, the first to perform spacecraft-to-spacecraft communications, the first to spend two weeks in space
  • Valeri Polyakov, performer of the longest continuous spaceflight (437 days)
  • Pavel Popovich, participant of the first parallel flight, the first to perform spacecraft-to-spacecraft communications
  • Svetlana Savitskaya, second woman to fly into space, the first to perform a spacewalk
  • Vitaly Sevastyanov, the first to spend two weeks in space
  • Anatoly Solovyev, the person who made most spacewalks and accumulated most time spacewalking (over 82 hours)
  • Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman and civilian in space
  • Gherman Titov, the second human to orbit the Earth, the first who spent a whole day and slept in space, the youngest cosmonaut/astronaut so far
  • Vladimir Titov, the first to spend in orbit over a year
  • Boris Yegorov, a member of the first three-person space crew, the first physician in space
  • Aleksei Yeliseyev, participant of the first dual spacewalk and crew transfer between spacecraft

Inventors and engineers

Polymath inventors

Weaponry makers

Land transport developers

Naval engineers

Aerospace engineers

Structural engineers

Electrical engineers

IT developers

Optics and photography pioneers

Communication engineers

Musical instrument makers

Miscellaneous inventors

Scientists and scholars


Earth scientists

Biologists and paleontologists

Physicians and psychologists

Economists and sociologists

Historians and archeologists

Linguists and ethnographers


Astronomers and cosmologists


Chemists and material scientists


Visual arts


Sculptors and jewellers



Novel and short story authors

Boris Pasternak

Philosophers and critics



Aleksandr Blok

Performing arts


Theatre directors

Konstantin Stanislavski

Film directors and animators

Ballet dancers and choreographers

Classical composers and musicians

Opera and choir singers

Modern musicians and singers

Radio and TV people

Igor Kirillov
Ivan Urgant
Anatoly Wasserman

Fashion models




  • Louis Kaplan ("Kid Kaplan"), world champion featherweight boxer, Hall of Fame
  • Oleg Maskaev, professional boxer, former WBC Heavyweight Champion
  • Natascha Ragosina, boxing world champion
  • Alexander Povetkin, Olympic Gold medalist
  • Shamil Sabirov, Russia, Olympic Gold medalist light flyweight
  • Kostya Tszyu, professional boxer, former Undisputed Junior Welterweight champion
  • Nikolai Valuev, professional boxer, former two-time WBA Heavyweight champion

Chess players


  • Maria Mazina, épée fencer, Olympic Gold medalist, bronze
  • Mark Midler, foil fencer, 2-time Olympic champion
  • Mark Rakita, saber fencer, 2-time Olympic champion, 2-time silver
  • Yakov Rylsky, saber fencer, Olympic champion
  • Sergey Sharikov, sabre fencer, two-time Olympic Gold medalist, silver, bronze
  • Eduard Vinokurov, sabre fencer, 2-time Olympic Gold medalist, silver

Figure skaters

Evgeny Plushenko


Ice hockey players

Soccer players

Tennis players

  • Andrei Chesnokov, former top 10 player
  • Nikolay Davydenko, former consistent top 10 player
  • Elena Dementieva, reached 2 Grand Slam finals in 2004 (French Open and U.S. Open), Silver Medal at the 2000 Summer Olympics and Gold Medal at the 2008 Summer Olympics
  • Yevgeny Kafelnikov, former world no. 1 tennis player
  • Maria Kirilenko, winner of 5 WTA Titles
  • Anna Kournikova, former top 10 tennis player, celebrity, and model
  • Svetlana Kuznetsova, former world no. 2 tennis player. Won the 2004 U.S. Open and 2009 French Open
  • Olga Morozova, former world top 10 tennis player, reached 2 Grand Slam finals in 1974 (French Open and Wimbledon), winner of French Open doubles in the same year
  • Anastasia Myskina, former world no. 2 tennis player. Won the 2004 French Open (becoming the first Russian woman to win a grand slam title)
  • Nadia Petrova, former top 3 tennis player
  • Marat Safin, former world no. 1 tennis player. Won 2000 U.S. Open and 2005 Australian Open.
  • Dinara Safina, former world no. 1 ladies tennis player
  • Maria Sharapova, former world no. 1 tennis player. Won 2004 Wimbledon at age of 17 as well as 2006 U.S. Open and 2008 Australian Open
  • Mikhail Youzhny, tennis player
  • Vera Zvonareva, 2 time Grand Slam finalist


Other sportspeople

Legendary and folk heroes

See also


External links

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