The Teaching about Concord and Reconciliation in the Encyclical of Metropolitan Daniil of Moscow


  • Ludmila Zhurova



Metropolitan Daniil’s Encyclical; pastor’s instruction; history of Old Russian literature; agape


The Encyclical of Metropolitan Daniil (On Reconciliation, Unity, Concord, Love, the Preservation of Orthodoxy and Religious Instruction and Guidance for All of Us), written in 1539, represents a farewell instruction from the hierarch. Following the deaths of Vasily III and Elena Glinskaya, the historical circumstances in Moscow did not favour Daniil, and, as a result, he had to leave his throne. The Encyclical has not been studied thoroughly or published previously. The article aims to uncover the history behind the text and the development of the author’s ideas. Using textological, structural, typological, historical, and literary methods of analysis, the article singles out two versions of the work in question and describes them, focusing on the author’s intentions. Additionally, the article contains a critical assessment of the conclusions made by
V. Zhmakin in 1881. The Encyclical can be found in three handwritten collections of the mid-16th century, all related to the Iosifo-Volokolamsky Monastery. The copies kept in the Russian State Library are the initial short and extended versions of the instruction. The extended version contains insets clarifying the message of the author and providing a continuation of the text. The plot of the Encyclical contains two themes: reconciliation in society and preservation of the Orthodox faith. In the short version, their roles are unequal. The teaching about reconciliation and concord is addressed to laymen, the clergy, and all God’s children. The structure of the model of reconciliation and concord is based on the Gospel and the Epistles. Daniil maintains that salvation is to be found in humility and agape, which is the root of all good causes. Agape is the leitmotif of Daniil’s theology. The short version of the Encyclical only contains one sentence about the observation of divine law (the other theme of the instruction). In the extended version, the author develops the idea connected with the protection of faith from evil teachings and hostile people. He encourages the reader to fight with them and maintains that in this case, there can be no reconciliation. The final part of the work in the extended version is a nakaz (pastor’s instruction) as a type of sermon. The structural connection of the Encyclical with Daniil’s Sobornik revealed in the article allow the author to describe the principles of the ecclesiastical writer and prepare his work for academic publication.

Author Biography

Ludmila Zhurova

Dr. Hab. (Philology), Leading Researcher, Institute of History, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

8, Nikolayev Str, 630090, Novosibirsk, Russia.


Dmitrieva, R. P. (1974). Volokolamskie chet’i sborniki XVI v. [Almanach Collections of Volokolamsk of the 16th Century]. In TODRL. Vol. 28. Leningrad, Nauka, pp. 202–230.

Dmitrieva, R. P. (1991). Iosifo-Volokolamskii monastyr’ kak tsentr knizhnosti [Iosifo-Volokolamskii Monastery as a Centre of Book Culture]. In Knizhnye tsentry Drevnei Rusi : Iosifo-Volokolamskii monastyr’ kak tsentr knizhnosti. Leningrad, Nauka, pp. 3–15.

Krom, M. M. (2010). “Vdovstvushchee tsarstvo” : Politicheskii krizis v Rossii 30‒40-kh gg. XVI v. [“Dowager Reign”. Political Crisis in Russia in the 1530s‒1540s]. Moscow, Novoe literaturnoe obozrenie. 888 p.

Muzeinoe sobranie rukopisei gosudarstvennoi biblioteki imeni V. I. Lenina [Museum Collection of Manuscripts of the Lenin State Library]. (1961). Moscow, Publichnaya biblioteka SSSR imeni V. I. Lenina. 524 p.

RGB [Russian State Library]. Stock 113. Volokolamskoe sobranie. № 514. 1563 g. Fol. 413–424 reverses; № 522. 50-e gg. XVI v. Fol. 481–495; Stock 173. Sobranie MDA/I. № 197. 30-e gg. XVI v. 493 fol.

RNB [National Library of Russia]. Sobranie Pogodina. № 1149. 80-e gg. XVI v. Fol. 1–217; Q.I.1439 (60-е gg. XVI v.). Fol. 200 ob.‒314.

Shaposhnik, V. V. (2012). K voprosu o sobytiyakh avgusta 1534 goda [About the Events of August 1534]. In Russkoe Srednevekov’e : sbornik statei v chest’ professora Yu. G. Alekseeva. Moscow, Drevlekhranilishche, pp. 351–374.

Shaposhnik, V. V. (2016). Smert’ Eleny Glinskoi i pridvornaya bor’ba v Moskve (aprel’– oktyabr’ 1538 goda) [Elena Glinskaya’s Death and Court Wars in Moscow (April – August 1538)]. In Grani russkogo Srednevekov’ya : sbornik statei k 90-letiyu Yu. G. Alekseeva. Moscow, Drevlekhranilishche, pp. 47–54.

Sinitsyna, N. V. (1965). Poslanie konstantinopol’skogo patriarkha Fotiya knyazyu Mikhailu Bolgarskomu v spiskakh XVI v. [Letter of Patriarch Photios of Constantinople to Prince Mikhail Bolgarskii in Copies of the 16th Century]. In TODRL. Vol. 21. Leningrad, Nauka, pp. 96–125.

Zhmakin, V. (1881). Mitropolit Daniil i ego sochineniya [Metropolitan Daniil and His Works]. Moscow, Imperatorskoe Obshchestvo istorii i drevnostei rossiiskikh pri Moskovskom universitete. 762 + 96 p.

Zhurova, L. I. (2014). “Nakazaniya” v strukture Slov “Sobornika” mitropolita Daniila [“Orders” in the Structure of the Sermons in Metropolitan Daniil’s Sobornik]. In Sibirskii filologicheskii zhurnal. No. 3, pp. 50–57.

Zhurova, L. I. (2016). K voprosu o nravstvennom bogoslovii mitropolita Daniila [About Metropolitan Daniil’s Moral Theology]. In Vestnik Ekaterinburgskoi dukhovnoi seminarii. No. 4, pp. 63–83.

Zhurova, L. I. (2017a). Poslaniya miropolita Daniila: istoriya teksta avtorskogo sobraniya [Metropolitan Daniil’s Epistles. The History of Text from the Author’s Collection]. In Drevnyaya Rus’ : Voprosy medievistiki. No. 4, pp. 109–116.

Zhurova, L. I. (2017b). Druzhininskii sbornik poslanii Daniila (RNB. Q.I.1439): voprosy tsiklizatsii [Druzhinin’s Collection of Metropolitan Daniil’s Epistles (NLR. Q.I.1439): Cyclisation Issues]. In Kuskovskie chteniya – 2017 : Kul’turno-semioticheskoe prostranstvo russkoi slovesnosti: istoriya razvitiya i perspektivy izucheniya. Moscow, Izdatel’stvo Moskovskogo gosudarstvennogo psikhologo-pedagogicheskogo universiteta, pp. 272–280.

Zimin, A. A., Lur’e, Ya. S. (Eds.). (1959). Poslaniya Iosifa Volotskogo [Iosif Volotsky’s Epistles]. Moscow, Leningrad, Izdatel’stvo Akademii nauk SSSR. 390 p.



How to Cite

Zhurova, L. (2018). The Teaching about Concord and Reconciliation in the Encyclical of Metropolitan Daniil of Moscow. Quaestio Rossica, 6(4), 1015–1030.



Problema voluminis