Muscovite affairs during the 1360s, abided by the patriarchal synod's decisions, and was an honoured guest both at Constantinople and at the khan's court. He benefited from the vacancy of the Lithuanian metropolitan see following the death of Roman in 1362. Olgerd finally complained to Constantinople in 1370 that Aleksii never visited the Lithuanian-ruled lands and sided with Dmitrii of Moscow: 'he blesses the Muscovites to commit bloodshed . . . And when someone kisses the cross to me and then escapes to them, the metropolitan frees him from his allegiance [to me].'62

The fluctuating power-balances in regions far beyond effective political reach inevitably posed problems for Byzantium. The flexibility earlier shown in accommodating the rise of Lithuanian power was strained once the grand duke aspired to dominance over all Rus. Patriarch Philotheos's response to Olgerd's complaints and demands was, for all its ingenuity, slow to take effect. During Aleksii's lifetime, Philotheos consecrated his own former envoy to Rus, Kiprian, as 'metropolitan of Kiev, Rus and the Lithuanians' and sent him to live temporarily in the lands under Lithuanian dominion; but the synodal act promulgating his appointment in 1375 expressly stated that 'the ancient state of affairs should be restored in the future under one metropolitan'; Kiprian was, after Aleksii's death, to assume jurisdiction over the whole of Rus and be metropolitan 'of all Rhosia'.'63

In the event, after Aleksii's death Prince Dmitrii of Moscow secured the installation as metropolitan ofhis own candidate, Pimen. Only after the deaths of prince and metropolitan in the same year, 1389, was Kiprian able to take up residence in Moscow. Yet, without downplaying the importance of contingency, both the pagan Olgerd and Moscow's leadership shared the assumption that patriarch and emperor, acting in conjunction, would have the last word in determining the ecclesiastical landscape. Olgerd's complaint to Philotheos about Aleksii's partisanship and plea for his own candidate presupposes a degree of impartiality in Byzantine church discipline not so far removed from Semen's rhetorical-seeming declaration that the empire was 'the teacher of law-giving'.64 Olgerd's frustration sprang from recognition of the indispens-ability of Orthodox rites and devotions to most of the Rus inhabitants of his dominions; in light of his subjects' proclivities, the grand duke's bargaining power with the Constantinopolitan patriarchate was limited, for all his martial prowess and intimations of sympathy for Latin churchmen.

62 Miklosich and Muller, i, 581; Reg. no. 2625; Meyendorff, Byzantium, 193-5, 288.

63 Miklosich and Muller, ii, 120; Reg. no. 2665; Meyendorff, Byzantium, 200-1.

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