Alexander Peresvet

A single combat of Peresvet against Chelubei before the Battle of Kulikovo (Viktor Vasnetsov, 1914)

Alexander Peresvet, also spelled Peresviet (Russian: Александр Пересвет), was a Russian Orthodox Christian monk who fought in a single combat with the Tatar champion Temir-murza (known in most Russian sources as Chelubey or Cheli-bey) at the opening of the Battle of Kulikovo (8 September 1380), where they killed each other.

He is believed to have hailed from the Bryansk area and took the monastic habit at the Rostov Monastery of Saints Boris and Gleb. Later he moved to the Monastery of Pereslavl-Zalessky under the service of Dmitri Donskoi. He later moved to the Trinity Abbey where he became a follower of Sergius of Radonezh. Alexander and his friend Rodion Oslyabya joined Russian troops approaching to fight against Mamai invasion.

The battle of Kulikovo was opened by single combat between the two champions. The Russian champion was Alexander Peresvet. The Horde champion was Temir-murza. The champions killed each other in the first run, though according to a Russian legend, Peresvet did not fall from the saddle, while Temir-murza did.

Peresvet's body, together with that of his brother-in-arms Oslyabya, were brought to Moscow, where they lie buried at the 15th-century Theotokos Church in Simonovo.


MV Alexander Peresvet carrying the holy relics of Venerable Macarius stops in Kstovo, on its way from Nizhny Novgorod to Makaryev Monastery


In Russian Language

  • Титов А. А. Предание о ростовских князьях. М., 1885
  • Описание Свято-Димитриевского монастыря в г. Скопине. Издательство Свято-Димитриевского монастыря, 2000.
  • Рязанские епархиальные ведомости. 1891, № 2, 3.
  • Лошиц Ю. М. Дмитрий Донской., М., 1996
  • Розанов Н. П. История церкви Рождества Пресвятые Богородицы на Старом Симонове в Москве. К её пятисотолетию (1370—1870). М., 1870
  • Благословение преподобного Сергия. Под редакцией В.Силовьева. Изд.совет РПЦ, 2005 ISBN 5-94625-127-9