In the spring of 1917 the Warsaw Publishing Company published the first volume of my History of Russia which in 527 pages of the 8th print size covered the time period only up to the year 1449. Before I shall be able to complete this work in the same sort of detail, the need appeared, a very urgent one, to give to our general public a concise overview of the subject - and so this is the genesis of the present book.
From start to finish this book contains only the results of my own investigations and many years of studies which were conducted and interrupted due to various circumstances of life. This is an abridged version in respect to the former more exten-sive study, providing here only its backbone. It is an abbrevia-tion of the first volume and a conspectus of further ones pub-lished in advance because of the practical needs of the public. For this reason in this volume I have kept to the rule that a presentation of the earlier times is given as briefly as possible and the work expands increasingly as more recent times are dealt with.
This shortened version is completely void of the so called scientific apparatus; this is left for the more detailed editions in which I shall try to maintain the same method as was used in vol. 1. Whoever is interested in details, deductions, proofs, who likes to ask the question: why? and requires justified answers for it will have to look into the main study and consider the present volume as an introductory reading.