1000 Years of Christianity in Russia Medal. St. Vladimir (958-1015), Prince of Kiev, was the grandson of St. Olga and the son of Prince Svyatoslav. He is known as Equal to the Apostles and Krasno Solnyshko (Красно Солнышко), which means the Fair, or Red, Sun. Born a pagan, he married Anna (963-1011), the daughter of the Byzantine emperor Romanos II and the empress Theophano and sister of emperors Basil II and Constantine VIII. After baptizing Kievan Rus, St. Vladimir set about destroying pagan monuments and establishing churches.
He is portrayed resting atop a cloud holding the Russian Orthodox cross aloft. He also holds a shield, the symbol of protection against evils and falsities. Behind him the rays of the sun symbolize his wisdom and life in the church.
Originally issued in a limited edition by the Munich mint for the celebration of the Millennium of Christianity (988-1988), this later issue medal is the same size as the original. They were minted in a small batch by the Russian Orthodox community centered in New York City. The Russian Orthodox Church in Russia (Moscow Patriarch) also produced a limited number of the same medals but cast them in different metals, including aluminum. This stunning medal is minted in heavy solid gold plated brass. 2¾" diameter (70mm).