Sviatosha Mykola (Nicholas the Saint)

XII pageKyivan RusPrincely times

Mykola Sviatosha (secular name and patronymic – Sviatoslav-Pankraty Davydovych; 1080–14.10.1143) – Prince of Lutsk and Chernihiv. Wonderworker of the Pechersk Monastery.

Son of Prince Davyd Sviatoslavych of Chernihiv, grandson of Grand Prince Sviatoslav Yaroslavych of Kyiv who was the patron of the Pechersk Monastery monks. Before tonsuring reigned in Lutsk, from which was banished by Prince Davyd Ihorovych of Volyn; later in duumvirate with his father ruled the Chernihiv Principality, had landed property near Kyiv (it is considered that one of Kyiv’s suburbs – Sviatoshyn – was named after him), had a wife and children (his daughter was married to the Prince Vsevolod-Gabriel of Novgorod).

On February 17, 1106, Prince Sviatoslav-Pankraty, having forsaken his worldly life forever, left native parts, took monastic vows, and under the name of Nicholas spent 36 year in the Kyiv-Pechersk Monastery, leading a strict ascetic way of life. He was called Sviatosha (the Saint) for his piety. He transferred the monastery hospital to the other part of the cloister and expanded it so that an entire “infirmary monastery” formed. On his donations in the Kyiv-Pechersk Monastery the Gate Church of the Holy Trinity was built (which was proved by the excavations held by the Kyivan archaeologist P. Lashkariov in the 19 th c.) as well as the Infirmary Church of St. Nicholas. Near his cell Mykola Sviatosha laid out a wonderful garden. He collected many books and later donated them to the Kyiv-Pechersk Monastery. He was a great peacemaker and reconciled his brothers in their quarrels. He is known and esteemed as a miracle-worker.

The Prince-monk was canonized after his death. His relics are kept in the Near (St. Anthony’s) Caves of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra.