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Ivan III, grandfather to Ivan the Terrible, is the Russian leader most often associated with the defeat of the Mongols. Duke of Muscovy, Ivan III consolidated control over areas of modern Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia, forming a solid front against what has become known as the "Mongol Yoke." Through mostly political maneuvering, he weakened the political control of Mongol officials, and the Russian noble families who had come to depend on them for titles and authority. Later, Ivan the Terrible would consolidate Russian gains against the Mongols with major military victories at Kazan and at Astrakhan.
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