Ivan III “the Great” of Moscow died on this day in 1505. Inheriting the Grand Duchy of Moscow and the Grand Duchy of Rus, he set about conquering the neighboring provinces, including those of Novgorod, to grow the Duchy into a regional power. He also led wars against the Mongol successor state the Golden Horde, which had held power over the Russian area for more than a century, demanding tributes from the weaker countries. Ivan III set the foundation for the expansion of the Russian nation, tripling the land held by Moscow. With the separation of Poland-Lithuania once again with the death of Casimir IV, Ivan led a war against the weakened Lithuania, beginning Russian dominance of Poland and Eastern Europe, something that would last to this day. Ivan allied himself with Denmark, developing a deep friendship with Danish king Hans. Upon his death at the age of sixty-five, the unification of the Russian lands is considered completed, and the beginning of the first united Russian country began.