In 1161–1168 was the Prince of Ovruch. After the death of his father in 1167 got Ovruch in possession; in 1170–1172 was the Prince of Novgorod, later succeeded Sviatoslav Vsevolodovych on the Kyiv throne. Spent the remainder of his life in the struggle for the throne of the Grand Prince of Kyiv (he sat on it in 1173, 1176, 1180–1181, 1194–1201, 1203–1205, 1206, 1207–1210), in particular with his
Political differences with the Olhovychi and later with his
In the struggle against Roman Mstyslavych for the throne of the Grand Prince was defeated and in 1204 was confined to a cloister. In 1205, after the death of Roman Mstyslavych, left the monastery and returned to political activities: he again started struggle for the Kyivan throne, which lasted to 1210, when his rival, Prince Vsevolod Sviatoslavych Cheremny became the Grand Prince of Kyiv.
He was married twice: in 1162 to a daughter of the Polovtsian Khan Beluk (her name is unknown, died before 1172) and in 1172 to Anna, daughter of the Prince Yuri Yarosalvych of Turiv. Anna Yuriivna, though forcedly took the veil (1204), refused to leave the convent in 1205.
At the end of his life the Prince was forced to leave Kyiv for Chernihiv (1210), where he ruled until his death.
Portrait (imaginary) of Riuryk Rostyslavych