Formation Of The Institute Of Constitutional And Legal Responsibility In The Legal System Of Kievan Rus

  • V.V. Knysh
Keywords: Kievan Rus, legal system of Kievan Rus, responsibility, social responsibility, social and legal responsibility, legal responsibility, constitutional and legal responsibility, constitutional and legal responsibility of state bodies of Kievan Rus.


The article is devoted to the problems of the genesis of the institute of constitutional and legal responsibility within the legal system of Kievan Rus. During the study, the author concludes that the principles of the so-called universal positive constitutional and legal responsibility of the Grand Duke. This universality was manifested in a wide range of its powers, which determined the broad limits of positive responsibility in various spheres of public life, in particular: 1) in the legislative sphere - through the adoption of regulations on various issues of society; 2) in the field of executive and management activities - through the implementation of personnel appointments at different levels of government; 3) in the field of justice - due to the presence of the highest judicial power. The constitutional and legal responsibility of the chamber in Kievan Rus also had its specifics. It included the following features: 1) could only be positive (prospective), which concerned the choice of direction of development of the state, and negative (retrospective) responsibility of the chamber was not determined at the regulatory level, as the people can not apply constitutional sanctions; 2) the scope of positive constitutional and legal responsibility of the council for the circle of persons who took part in it, depending on the city in Russia, could be of different nature. If in Kyiv the chamber was nationwide, and therefore the whole population was responsible for its decision (general positive responsibility), in Novgorod such responsibility was limited (estate-representative) due to the limitation of the number of persons who participated in the chamber; 3) according to the scope and scope of powers, the positive constitutional and legal responsibility of the people’s council can be differentiated as follows: a) responsibility for key personnel appointments (for example, for the election of the prince or his removal); b) responsibility for justice. The Chamber considered individual court cases, but these were, firstly, isolated cases, and secondly, such isolated cases of «people’s justice» were based more on legal custom than on normative legal acts.

At the local level, the constitutional and legal responsibility for state-building processes rested with mayors and parishioners. It had the following features: 1) responsibility for the organization of justice, for executive and administrative activities (especially in the field of taxation), as well as for military and defence activities; 2) a separate principle of such responsibility was also a combination of centralization principles (in terms of subordination and accountability to the prince, who could remove mayors or districts from office) and decentralization principles (although mayors and districts were not officially paid, but they actually formed local budgets. of which part of the funds for their own maintenance and distributing the rest of the finances for the needs of administrative-territorial units).