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According to the Primary Chronicle the Rus' elite initially consisted of Varangians from Scandinavia.
The Golden Age of Kievan Rus' began with the reign of Vladimir the Great (980–1015), who turned Rus' toward Byzantine Christianity.
However, both of these first two earlier periods would eventually see Ukraine's territories consolidated back into a Soviet republic within the USSR.
The third period of independence began in 1991, when Ukraine gained its independence from the Soviet Union in the aftermath of its dissolution at the end of the Cold War.
During the 20th century three periods of independence occurred.
By 4,500 BC, the Neolithic Cucuteni-Trypillian Culture flourished in a wide area that included parts of modern Ukraine including Trypillia and the entire Dnieper-Dniester region.
During the Iron Age, the land was inhabited by Cimmerians, Scythians, and Sarmatians.
Beginning in the sixth century BC, colonies of Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome and the Byzantine Empire, such as Tyras, Olbia and Chersonesus, were founded on the northeastern shore of the Black Sea.
Ukrainian Rock Band Okean Elzy Formed in the city of Lviv in 1994, the band Okean Elzy has gathered a following of fans throughout Ukraine and beyond its borders with music and lyrics that resonate with the band's audience. read more Historical Reminders of the Scythians in Ukraine Thousands of burial mounds across the southern steppes of Ukraine remain as a reminder of the historical presence of the Scythians, a semi-nomadic equestrian tribe who occupied the area between the 7th century BC and the 4th c...
read more Ukrainian Crafts: Petrykivka Painting Originating in the village of Petrykivka in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, the Petrykivka style of painting is one of Ukraine's unique and treasured forms of ornamental folk art which is still practiced around the country today. read more Visiting Villages in the Heart of Ukraine On the road between Kiev and Poltava, through an area affectionately referred to as the 'Heart of Ukraine', travelers will come across a number of villages overflowing with history and culture. read more Important Bird Areas of Ukraine Working in partnership with Birdlife International, the Ukrainian Society for the Protection of Birds (USPB) has its headquarters in Kiev, with local branches throughout Ukraine supported by thousands of birdwatchers and ornit...