The Illustrated Chronicle of Ivan the Terrible (? ? ?) is the largest compilation of historical information ever assembled in medieval Russia. It covers the period from the creation of the world to the year 1567. It is also informally known as the Tsar Book (?-), in an analogy with Tsar Bell and Tsar Cannon
The set of manuscripts was commissioned by Ivan the Terrible specifically for his royal library. The literal meaning of the Russian title is "face chronicle," alluding to the numerous hand-painted miniatures. The compilation consists of 10 volumes, containing about 10 thousand sheets of rag paper. It is illustrated with more than 16 thousand miniatures.
The volumes are grouped in a relatively chronological order and include four major areas: Biblical History, History of Rome, History of Byzantium and Russian history. The titles and contents of the 10 volumes are:
The manuscript is thought to have been created between 1568 and 1576. The work seems to have been started as early as the 1540s. It was commissioned by Ivan the Terrible for the royal library for the purposes of educating his children. The tsar's confidant Aleksey Adashev was involved in the creation of the work.