Special Report

19 Wars Russia Has Lost, from Ivan the Terrible to Vladimir Putin

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Livonian War
>Year(s) 1558–1583
> Opponents: Livonian Confederation, Denmark-Norway, Sweden, Polish- Lithuanian Commonwealth and Union

Under the reign of Tsar Ivan IV Vasilyevich, known to history as Ivan the Terrible, Russia went to war with Sweden, the Great Duchy of Lithuania (united with Poland in 1569), and their allies over control of the lands held by the Livonian Confederation (much of present day Latvia and Estonia). The war lasted 25 years, and ended with a major defeat for Russia, which was obliged to renounce any claims to Livonia and give up other territory, including parts of Lithuania and towns along the Gulf of Finland.

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Ingrian War
>Year(s) 1610–1617
> Opponent: Sweden

The Ingrian War with Sweden involved an attempt by Sweden to install a Swedish duke on the Russian throne. The conflict ended with Sweden gaining territory – including Ingria on the southeastern shore of the Gulf of Finland – in the Treaty of Stolbovo. The pact required Russia to pay war indemnities to Sweden, and robbed the Tsardom of all access to the Baltic Sea.

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Smolensk War
>Year(s) 1632–1634
> Opponent: Poland-Lithuania

The Smolensk War was an unsuccessful campaign by Russia to recover the western border regions lost to the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The area included 30 fortress towns, the most important of which was Smolensk, which guarded the main western roads to Moscow. The conflict was significant because it marked Russia’s first use of Western European infantry organization and tactics.

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Alexis I’s Persian War
>Year(s) 1651–1653
> Opponent: Persia

War erupted between the Safavid Empire in Persia and Russia under Tsar Alexis I. The bone of contention was a newly built Russian-held fortress on the lower Sunzha River near present-day Grozny in the North Caucasus. After defeats by Russian troops, a stronger Persian force seized the fort and destroyed it. The fort’s fall strengthened Persia’s position in the region.

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Sino-Russian border conflicts
>Year(s) 1652–1689
> Opponent: China/Korea

In the 17th century, Russia was trying to expand to the East, and imperial China stood in its way. There were sporadic battles over a 37-year period between the Qing dynasty and the Tsardom of Russia, the latter of which sought the land north of the Amur River. The conflict ended with the Treaty of Nerchinsk in 1689 with the Russians yielding the area north of the Amur River as far as the Stanovoy Mountains. Sino-Russian border disputes continue to this day.

Sponsored: Tips for Investing

A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. They often offer low investment fees, helping you maximize your profit.