Ivan IV Vasilyevich (Russian: Ива́н Васи́льевич, tr. Ivan Vasilyevich; 25 August 1530 – 28 March [O.S. 18 March] 1584), commonly known as Ivan the Terrible or Ivan the Fearsome (Russian: About this sound Ива́н Гро́зный (help·info), Ivan Grozny; a better translation into modern English would be Ivan the Formidable), was the Grand Prince of Moscow from 1533 to 1547, then "Tsar of All the Russias" until his death in 1584. The last title was used by all his successors.
During his reign, Russia conquered the Khanates of Kazan, Astrakhan and Sibir, becoming a multiethnic and multicontinental state spanning approximately 4,050,000 km2 (1,560,000 sq mi). He exercised autocratic control over Russia's hereditary nobility and developed a bureaucracy to administer the new territories. He transformed Russia from a medieval state into an empire, though at immense cost to its people, and its broader, long-term economy.
Historic sources present disparate accounts of Ivan's complex personality: he was described as intelligent and devout, yet given to rages and prone to episodic outbreaks of mental instability that increased with his age. In one such outburst, he killed his son and heir Ivan Ivanovich. This left his younger son, the pious but politically ineffectual Feodor Ivanovich, to inherit the throne.
Ivan was an able diplomat, a patron of arts and trade, and founder of the Moscow Print Yard, Russia's first publishing house. He was popular among Russia's commoners (see Ivan the Terrible in Russian folklore), except possibly the people of Novgorod and surrounding areas (see "Massacre of Novgorod"), and he is also noted for his paranoia and harsh treatment of the Russian nobility.