ches in the wall which shut Russia off from the rest of Europe; in letting in that light which was necessary for any literary plants to grow, and in removing those obstacles which prevented Russia from enjoying her rightful heritage among the rest of her sister European nations: a heritage which she had well employed in earlier days, and which she had lost for a time owing to the barbarian invasion.
The first event which made a breach in the wall was the marriage of Ivan III, Tsar of Moscow, to Sophia Palæologa, the niece of the last of the Byzantine Emperors. She brought with her Italian architects and other foreigners, and the work of Peter the Great, of opening a window in Russia on to Europe, was begun.
The first printing press was established in Moscow during the reign of Ivan the Terrible, and the first book was printed in 1564. But literature was still under the direct control of the Church, and the Church looked upon all innovations and all foreign learning with the deepest mistrus