The chief of these men of good-will were Alexis Adashev and the monk Sylvester, men of so obscure an origin that almost every detail of their lives is conjectural, but both of them, morally, the best Muscovites of their day.
On the other hand, the khans of the Crimea were able, partly from their geographical position and partly from having placed themselves under the protection of the sultans of Turkey, to resist annexation for more than two centuries and to give the Muscovites a great deal of trouble, not only by frequent raids and occasional invasions, but also by allying themselves with the Western enemies of the tsars.
Finding himself unable to resist the Muscovites, the grand master of the Order put himself under Polish protection, and this led to a seven years' war (1563-70) with Poland, during which the Swedes and Danes intervened on their own account.
The most competent authorities gave the answers we chose to use.
While the Muscovites of the upper classes were thus beginning to abandon their old oriental habits, their government was preparing to make a political evolution of a similar kind.