Peter the Great

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Jeff Heskey

Hist 3320

December 08, 2011

Dr. Sanchez

The impact of Westernization under Peter the Great

The impact of Westernization under Peter the Great.
Virtually every aspect of Russia was affected by reforms during the reign of Peter the Great. His reforms were the most wide-spread ever to take place. Of all of the Czars Peter is one of the most visible and in Russian history. The reforms and westernization of Peter the Great made Russia a more modern and stronger power in Europe under his rule and until his death in 1725. Peter was a powerful and forceful leader with a vision. He wanted to westernize Russia and bring the state to a more modern era in order to compete with Europe for goods and services. Russia was antiquated in many of the state infrastructures, organization and administration structures as compared to other countries. Peter’s new vision for a new Russia was to restructure it by changing the internal organization of many of its oldest legacy institutions. Peter radically raised taxes to support his military reforms, including the creation of a "soul tax," Women were included in more social functions. Previously, (Robinson) women were isolated in Terem not to exclude them from society as so often is misrepresented. The Terem was a medieval royal palace in the Kremlin, Moscow. This concept was structured after a similar model used by the Byzantines to protect women from attacks from barbarians. As a ruler that significantly affected Russian society, his events and actions left a negative impact on his personal legacy and history. He was an absolute authority that fought against rebellion and punished those who spoke against him. Peter the Great took Russian from an outdated and antiquated role in Europe to move it forward and become influential and strong as a nation. Peter diverged from traditional Russian thinking and was very aware it was far behind many other European countries. His plan was to change how it was ruled and moved it to become a modern nation. Russia was behind in military, social reform, technology and many other aspects in comparison to the other countries were leading the world. His vision and mission began to reform every Russian institution and “westernize” the State with sweeping changes never before approached. Peter the Great inherited the position of Czar in 1682 when he was ten years old. Peter forced his half-sister Sophia and then. (Raeff). Peter was born in Moscow on 9th June, of 1672. Peter was the first son for his father Alexis and his 2nd wife Natalia Naryshkin. After the death of his father in 1676 Peter’s half-brother from his father’s first marriage to Maria Miloslavsky and took over the throne. A power struggle took place in 1689 when he forced his half-sister with his half-brother Ivan. After Ivan, Peters Half-brother died, The struggle of power and influence between the Miloslavsky and Naryshkin family ultimately brought support from the Russian Orthodox Church and Russian Nobles to proclaim the nine-year-old Peter as czar in April of 1682. Natalia Naryshkin, became the Regent of Russia. In her position of power and influence she appointed many family members and friend to authoritative titles of distinction. Her family held government agency authority and powerful position within the government’s official titles. Peter’s half sister Sophia Alekseyevna did not support the appointment of Peter as the czar. She revolted because Peter was bypassing the normal aristocratic élite. The rebellion by Sophia against the Naryshkin resulted in killing many members of Peter’s family. At a young age Peter was witness to many of family killings. After the rebellion Peter made an example of many people by using public executions as a deterrent. Dead bodies were left on display as a message and reference to the strength and power of Peters reign and an indicator of how rebellion would not be tolerated. Peter did not have formal academic education...
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