Ivan the Terrible
Ivan IV, the first Grand Duke of Moscow to take the title Czar, was one of the most violent and demented rulers in history. Both sadist and mystic, he claimed to be both the blood successor to Caesar Augustus and God¿:s vicar on earth. Devoted associates and sworn enemies alike perished amid hideous tortures. Villages, towns and an entire city were obliterated: he even murdered his own son in a burst of fury.
And yet, by conquering much of the territory that became 20th century Russia, he also forged an orderly empire out of the barbarous and disordered world into which he was born.
Henri Troyat, the Prix Goncourt ¿:winning biographer of Catherine the Great, Tolstoy, Turgenev and other giants of Russian history brings to life Russia¿:s bloodiest czar creating the unforgettable portrait of a man driven mad with the delirium of his divine right to power.
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