Sweden seized large parts of today's eastern Germany and Poland, and became a major Baltic power. Peter_III_by_Antropov_1753_Russian_museum.jpg. The future Catherine the Great of Russia had surprising beginnings. Born Sophia Augusta Fredericka to Christian August, Prince of Anhalt-Zerbst, and Princess Johanna Elisabeth of Holstein-Gottorp in Stettin, Pomerania, she received education chiefly from a French governess and from tutors. She expanded the Russian Empire, improved administration, and vigorously pursued the policy of Westernization. Peter considered this a casus belli and prepared for open warfare against Denmark, but lost his throne before starting the war. THE GREAT is a satirical, comedic drama - based on the occasional historical fact - about the rise of Catherine the Great from outsider to the longest reigning female ruler in Russia's history. Throughout Russia, the inspectors encountered a patchy system. 1725 - Peter the Great dies and his wife Catherine I reigns as Empress of Russia. Meanwhile, Russian columns ambushed and destroyed Swedish reinforcements that Charles desperately needed to replenish his battered army. by brooks johnson 1. Catherine was originally the German lady Sophie Friederike Auguste.. Sophie became Catherine II, the Empress of Russia from 1762 until 1796.She was an enlightened despot and all in all a pretty tough bone.. He focused on making alliances with Sweden and England to ensure that they would not interfere on Denmark’s behalf, while Russian forces gathered at Kolberg in Russian-occupied Pomerania. Peter’s shift in the official position of Russia from the enemy to the ally of Prussia during the Seven Years’ War eroded much of his support among the nobility. Peter was believed to have taken a mistress (Elizabeth Vorontsova), while Catherine carried on liaisons with Sergei Saltykov, Grigory Grigoryevich Orlov, Alexander Vasilchikov, Grigory Potemkin, Stanisław August Poniatowski, Alexander Vasilchikov, and others. She spent much of this time alone in her own private boudoir to hide away from Peter’s abrasive personality. The regiment marched to the Winter Palace and arrested the infant Emperor, his parents, and their own lieutenant-colonel, Count von Munnich. The Smolny Institute, the first Russian Institute for Noble Maidens and the first European state higher education institution for women, by S.F. One of Peter’s most widely debated reforms was a manifesto that exempted the nobility from obligatory state and military service (established by Peter the Great) and gave them freedom to travel abroad. The Romanovs The Romanov Dynasty (1613 to 1917) was the last imperial dynasty to rule Russia. Within a few months of her accession in 1762, having heard the French government threatened to stop the publication of the famous French Encyclopédie on account of its irreligious spirit, Catherine proposed to Diderot that he should complete his great work in Russia under her protection. Russia was revitalized, growing larger and stronger than ever and becoming recognized as one of the great powers of Europe. Pugachev’s Rebellion Catherine was an enlightened liberal only in theory. Music also gained importance in Russia under Elizabeth. Seeing the soldiers reminds Catherine of her goal to rule Russia differently. Some of these men eventually became her trusted political or military advisors. Her reputation as an "enlightened despot," however, is not wholly supported by her deeds. Catherine became pregnant with her second child, Anna, who died as an infant in 1757. Charles left Russia with 543 survivors. The plan was another attempt to force nomadic people to settle. The object was to strengthen the friendship between Prussia and Russia, to weaken the influence of Austria and to ruin the chancellor Aleksey Petrovich Bestuzhev-Ryumin, on whom Russian Empress Elizabethrelied, and who was a known partisan of the Austrian alliance. After Peter succeeded to the Russian throne, the pro-Prussian emperor withdrew Russian forces from the Seven Years’ War and concluded a peace treaty with Prussia, an event known as the Second Miracle of the House of Brandenburg. S1 E6 Parachute Elizabeth invited her young nephew to Saint Petersburg, where he was received into the Orthodox Church and proclaimed heir in 1742. He represented the anti-Franco-Prussian portion of Elizabeth’s council and his object was to bring about an Anglo-Austro-Russian alliance. He also placed a corps of his own troops under Frederick’s command. Catherine II the Great Recognized worldwide as a noteworthy historical figure, Catherine the Great made such progress in political power that it is hard to find similar examples in world history. The Winter Palace and the Smolny Convent in Saint Petersburg are among the chief monuments of her reign. Portrait of Empress Catherine the Great by Russian painter Fyodor Rokotov, 1763.: Catherine reformed the administration of Russian guberniyas and many new cities and towns were founded on her orders. Russia’s annexation of the Crimea (1783) and desire to make Georgia a protectorate, plus the Turks’ attempts to foment a Tatar revolt, led to a renewal of Catherine’s war (it was rumored that she desired to absorb the Ottoman Empire). Key point: Sweden once was mighty and it nearly defeated Russia. She therefore entered into an alliance with France and Austria against Prussia. able to undo the ignominy of the Nordic war and return Sweden its supremacy in the Baltic Sea region. She had her husband arrested and forced him to sign a document of abdication, leaving no one to dispute her accession to the throne. Writing for History Extra, Hartley describes Catherine’s Russia as an undoubtedly “aggressive nation” that clashed with the Ottomans, Sweden, Poland, Lithuania and the Crimea in … The Swedes were commanded by young Charles … In 1775, she decreed a Statute for the Administration of the Provinces of the Russian Empire. In 1785, Catherine approved the subsidization of new mosques and new town settlements for Muslims. Grand_Duchess_Catherine_Alexeevna_by_L.Caravaque_1745_Gatchina_museum.jpg. Although the exemption from the obligatory service was welcomed by the Russian elites,  the overall reform did not convince them to support their emperor, who was generally considered as taking little interest in Russia and its matters. 1884 painting by Ivan Feodorov. Their crowning achievement was the Battle of Breitenfeld in September 1631, when a Protestant army of 23,000 Swedes and 18,000 Saxons nearly wiped out a Catholic Holy Roman Empire force of 35,000 men, and lost just 5,500 men in the process. The war inspired patriotism in Catherine's subjects but, in 1773, a former officer of the Don Cossacks inspired the greatest uprising in Russia prior to 1917. Detail Catherine the Great’s journey from German Princess to sole ruler of Russia. There is considerable speculation as to the actual paternity of Paul. In 1743, the Treaty of Åbo was signed, with Sweden ceding to Russia all of southern Finland east of the Kymmene River. Two years after the implementation of Catherine’s program, a member of the National Commission inspected the institutions established. Her religious policies largely aimed to control populations and religious institutions in the multi-religious empire. Ever the aggressive monarch, Charles XII laid siege to Poltava. By that time, Austria and other European powers had withdrawn from their alliances with Russia, so Catherine wasn't able to realize her plan to take over lands as far as Constantinople. Catherine longed for recognition as an enlightened sovereign. Then came the Great Frost of 1709, the coldest winter that Europe had experienced in the previous 500 years, which of course turned Russia into a vast freezer that could sustain human life under the right conditions. Catherine, though not descended from any previous Russian emperor of the Romanov Dynasty (she descended from the Rurik Dynasty, which preceded the Romanovs), succeeded her husband as empress regnant. However, Russia engaged in a scorched-earth campaign and managed to outlast and defeat the Swedish invaders. Peter III was emperor of Russia for six months in 1762. The Russo-Turkish War took four years, but Russia gained a large amount of land from Turkey and annexed Crimea. However, in her anti-Ottoman policy, she promoted the protection and fostering of Christians under Turkish rule. Nobles in each district elected a Marshal of the Nobility, who spoke on their behalf to the monarch on issues of concern to them, mainly economic ones. Peter III’s temperament became quite unbearable for those who resided in the palace. As a patron of the arts and an advocate of Enlightenment ideals, she presided over the age of the Russian Enlightenment, In this painting, she is visiting Mikhail Lomonosov, a Russian polymath, scientist and writer, who made important contributions to literature, education, and science. During the reign of her cousin, Elizabeth was gathering support in the background but after the death of Empress Anna, the regency of Anna Leopoldovna (Empress Anna’s niece) for the infant Ivan VI was marked by high taxes and economic problems. Her Prussophile successor, Peter III, at once recalled Russian armies from Berlin and mediated Frederick’s truce with Sweden. When most people think of Sweden, they think of IKEA furniture, depressing murder mysteries and a foreign policy of strict neutrality. The Russians also suffered. Due to the rumors of Catherine’s promiscuity, Peter was led to believe he was not the child’s biological father. Conflict in which a coalition led by the Tsardom of Russia successfully contested the supremacy of the Swedish Empire in northern Central Europe and Eastern Europe. A case of Peter’s religious policies serves as a demonstrative example of how the pro-Prussian emperor was perceived in Russia. An admirer of Peter the Great, Catherine continued to modernize Russia along Western European lines. None succeeded. In her memoirs, she wrote that when she came to Russia she decided to do whatever was required of her to become qualified to wear the crown. This dramatically shifted the balance of power in Europe. At the beginning Catherine’s foreign policy was in the hands of Nikita Panin. When the Ottoman Empire declared war on Russia for the second time in 1787, the Swedish king Gustav III. Elizabeth regarded the 1756 alliance between Great Britain and Prussia as utterly subversive of the previous conventions between Great Britain and Russia and sided against Prussia over a personal dislike of Frederick the Great. He had a substantial force composed of Cossacks, Russian peasants, factory serfs, and non-Russians. Empress Elizabeth arranged for Peter to marry his second cousin, Sophia Augusta Frederica (later Catherine the Great). On July 17, eight days after the coup and just six months after his accession to the throne, Peter III died at the hands of Alexei Orlov. The period of Catherine’s rule (1762-1796), the Catherinian Era, is often considered the Golden Age of the Russian Empire and the Russian nobility. Peter intervened with a relief force of 80,000 men. The road to Moscow is a matter of choice. While 17th Century armies were transitioning from swords and pikes to muskets and artillery, Gustavus Adolphus increased the number of gunpowder weapons. It was his aunt, Empress Elizabeth, that chose him as her successor. Elizabeth invited her young nephew to Saint Petersburg, where he was received into the Orthodox Church and proclaimed heir in 1742. Count Andrei Shuvalov, chamberlain to Catherine, is credited as the source of rumors regarding the monarch’s intimate affairs. However, she did not support a free-thinking spirit among her own subjects as much as among the famous French philosophers. Elizabeth’s half-nephew Peter II (the son of her half-brother from her father’s first marriage) succeeded her mother. to become wife of her second cousin, the prospective tsar Peter III, whom she eventually overthrew to become the Empress of Russia in 1762. The monarch taking responsibility for the subjects precluded their political participation. When Napoleon said he would defeat Russia, Balashov is said to have warned him: “The Russians, like the French, say that all roads lead to Rome. While the nobility put up appreciable amounts of money for these institutions, they preferred to send their children to private, more prestigious institutions. Elizabeth was renowned throughout and beyond Russia for her fierce commitment to the arts, particularly music, theater, and architecture. The Russian troops first resisted a Swedish charge (wounds had forced Charles to relinquish command of his army). Paul had in effect become a ward of the state and in a larger sense, the property of the state, to be brought up by Elizabeth as she believed he should be — as a true heir and great-grandson of her father, Peter the Great. She also became a great patron of Russian opera. Profile_portrait_of_Catherine_II_by_Fedor_Rokotov_1763_Tretyakov_gallery.jpg. The period of Catherine’s rule (1762-1796), the Catherinian Era, is often considered the Golden Age of the Russian Empire and Russian nobility. In an age when armies consisted of poorly paid and underfed peasants and mercenaries more likely to loot their own fellow citizens than fight the enemy, Sweden maintained a professional and well-trained standing army. Catherine the Great enthusiastically supported the ideals of the Enlightenment, thus earning the status of an enlightened despot, although her reforms benefited a small number of her subjects and did not change the oppressive system of Russian serfdom. Those who have seen the photos of frozen German soldiers at Moscow and Stalingrad can imagine what the boys from Stockholm must have looked like. However, due to extremely high mortality rates, it failed to serve that purpose. Watch Official Trailer now. As such, she believed that strengthening her authority had to occur by improving the lives of her subjects. A year before the Seven Years’ War formally ended, Elizabeth died. 1.1. It’s sometimes simply called the Miracle of the House of Brandenburg, which also refers to a surprising development during the Seven Years’ War, when Russia and Austria failed to follow up their victory over Frederick the Great at the Battle of Kunersdorf in 1759) He gave up Russian conquests in Prussia and offered 12,000 troops to make an alliance with Frederick the Great (1762). It is curious that over the course of 250 years, three European kings and dictators fought a campaign in Russia in the dead of winter. Yet the war began well for the Swedes. His pro-Lutheran stand has been interpreted by some recent biographers as the introduction of religious freedom, while Peter’s contemporaries (and many historians) saw it as an anti-Orthodox attitude proving Peter’s lack of understanding of his own empire. 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