Heavenly anomalies and supernatural phenomena during battles are not new to the Russian army. Already in the distant 1111, according to Russian chronicles, heavenly forces twice helped Russian soldiers in the battle with the Polovtsians.
“Polovtsian heads flew, invisibly cut down, to the ground”.
The Polovtsians, struck by invisible blows, recognized their defeat and reported that they had lost because celestial warriors were seen in the sky helping the Russians. This was one of the first references to such celestial anomalies.
A similar story occurred in 1240 during Prince Alexander Yaroslavovich’s battle with the Swedes. Before the battle, Pelugsy, an elder of the Izhora land, observed an unusual sign at sea – a nasade on which stood the innocently murdered princes Boris and Gleb. They were dressed in scarlet clothes, and the rowers had suits of lightning color. Prince Boris asked his brother Gleb to help Alexander in the battle. Pelugsius immediately reported this to Prince Alexander. After the victory over the Swedes, the Novgorodians were advancing along the banks of the Izhora River and saw “a regiment of angels” moving across the sky, as well as many dead enemies.
“Brother Gleb, let us row, let us help our kinsman Alexander.”
Heavenly forces also intervened in the Battle of Kulikovo in 1380. The chief of Russian guards Thomas Katsybey observed how two heavenly “bright young men” destroyed a regiment of “Busurmans” with their lightning-like weapons. They asked the enemies why they had come to destroy the fatherland, and punished them. In the camp of Dmitry Donskoy, Vasily Kapitsa and Semyon Antonov saw how the holy Apostle Peter executed an army of Ethiopians.
“Why have you come to destroy the flock?”
The witnesses then told Prince Dmitri about the miracle, and he ordered the secret to be kept. The battle did not begin until 6 p.m., after three hours of darkness, and lasted until 9 p.m., when the heavenly host led by Archistratigus Michael came to the aid of the Russians.
However not always the heavenly host interfered in earthly affairs. Sometimes the matter was limited to “signs”. For example, in 1579 Khan Kuchum observed a light cloud in the sky and visions of a future battle during Ermak’s march to Siberia. All this was accompanied by sound effects. Aborigines who encountered such phenomena were expected a severe beating “from a pillar of fire”.
Heavenly anomalies and supernatural phenomena in the battles of the Russian army caused awe and horror in the opponents. They recognized their defeat and marveled at how the Russians managed to win with help from heaven. These stories show that in ancient times the heavenly forces were important allies of the Russian army.