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PETER III

( Emperor of Russia from 1761)

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Biography PETER III
(1728-1762)
. The reign of Peter III, which lasted only six months old, was one of the shortest in Russian history, and probably would have passed unnoticed if not for the tragic fate of Caesar and the major changes that he managed to carry out
. Both are still a matter of controversy among historians.

. Eldest son of Peter I's daughter Anna and Duke Karl Friedrich of Holstein, called the birth of Karl Peter Ulrich, he was the first day of his birth has attracted the attention of political circles throughout Europe
. After all, being a grandson of two sworn enemies - Peter the Great and Charles XII, - he could have claimed and Russian, and Swedish throne. That is why people from surrounding early childhood orphan prince, were concerned not so much of his upbringing and education, as his device, and hence their own destiny. And teachers themselves - O. F. Brummer and F. W. Bergholz - did not differ, apparently, of high moral qualities, often brutally punished the boy, who for 13 years did not have any knowledge, except for a mediocre French. In these circumstances, Peter was growing nervous, sensitive child, reconciled a love for music and painting with adoration of all military. It is with the military have been connected to all the pleasures of his ambitious dreams, and without restraint, he boasted of his exploits non-existent on the battlefield, but in fact was a coward, and showed courage, just torturing animals. However, he was more genial than the evil; best feeling in the society and the waiters, according to some sources, already in his childhood passion for wine.

. form Holstein troops

.
. Accession to the throne of Elizabeth dramatically changed the fate of the young man: he was summoned to Russia, with the baptism in the Orthodox Church called the Peter Fyodorovich and proclaimed heir to the throne of Russia
. In 1745, he was married to a distant relative, the future Empress Catherine II. Bored at the court of Peter at first reacted to the appearance of the bride with joy, for he saw in her companion in amusements. Soon, however, revealed that Catherine did not share the love of her husband to play with dolls in the marital bed and arms drill. Over time, they grew increasingly estranged from each other, converging only in the moment common danger. Equally strange remained for Peter and Russia. He never did attempt to learn more about this country, its people and history. Moreover, he detested many of its customs, indecent grimacing and laughing during a church service, not observing the fasts and other rituals. Besides Peter, whom the Empress Elizabeth Petrovna did not admit to politics, languished in idleness, criticized the government, and during the Seven Years' War showed sincere sympathy to the Prussian King Frederick II. All this is well known not only at court but also in the wider strata of Russian society, where warily awaited reign was unpopular Peter.

. Entered in December 1761 to the throne, Peter immediately launched a frenzied activity, reveling in what became the absolute autocrat
. Every morning he listened to the reports of the nobles and generals, attended meetings of the Senate and the colleges, participated in the endless parades and competitions. At first glance, their active participation in government, which was in sharp contrast to its predecessors, the new emperor was like his great grandfather, but he doubted whether he had any particular political program. He just felt an unaccountable desire to demonstrate the determination of where Elizabeth hesitated and doubted. He did not care about how the subjects perceive their behavior, not trying to win their sympathy and even tried to form a party at the court of his supporters. But, most importantly, Peter thought it possible to solve all the problems cavalry assaults. That's right, just a few days in February 1762, he signed three important decree essentially means the radical political reform.

. These decrees were proclaimed freedom of the nobility from compulsory service, launched secularization (appeal to the secular) church land and eliminated Secret Chancellery - the main institution of political spying
. The first two reforms have long been preparing Elizabethan ministers and were only delayed hesitant Empress. But if a manifesto on freedom of the nobility, which contributed to the emergence in Russia of the estate, had long been expected, at least, and necessary, but carried out hastily second reform has turned against the Emperor a significant part of his subjects. In conjunction with the defiant behavior of Peter in the temples and persistent rumors about his intention to replace the orthodox Protestant rites, secularization was seen by many as a disrespect to the Russian Church. As for the elimination of the Secret Chancellery, and with it, and change the procedure itself and the nature of spying, it is obvious that this was an important event with far-reaching consequences. However, to assess it fully at that time, apparently, it was difficult. As a result, these reforms have not given to Peter III the necessary support in the community, . and the fact, . that immediately after the proclamation, he completely switched to foreign affairs, . testified about his unpredictability, . frightening court, . who fear expecting each of the next day.,

. Unlike domestic policy, in foreign Peter knew what he wanted
. Do not conceal his sympathy for Prussia, he signed with her first world, and then the military alliance. Thus, 'on no' were reduced all the efforts of Russia in the Seven Years' War, but Frederick II to avoid a complete rout. Military alliance with Prussia was directed against Denmark, in which Russia's new Emperor wanted to win the Duchy of Schleswig, formerly owned by his ancestors on his father's. At the same time he intended to speak from St. Petersburg, headed the guards regiments. Meanwhile the war with Denmark, not in the interests of Russia, did not cause approval of Russian society and the more guards, who did not want to leave the warm metropolitan apartments. Overhead, Peter began to thicken the clouds: in St. Petersburg almost openly talked about the impending coup, and begged the Prussian king in his letters ally be more careful.

. But the emperor was so sure of himself that no one would listen
. He sported a Prussian military uniform, with the Prussian medal on his chest and boasting about their superior knowledge of all the regiments of the Prussian army and its officers. Peter openly showed contempt for his wife and son Paul, spending time in a society favorite of Elizabeth Vorontsova, which had promised to marry. In the courtyard there were daily drinking, accompanied by revelry and unseemly imperial rank pastimes. As written later Catherine II, 'throughout the empire he had no more ferocious enemy than himself'. June 28, 1762 was the last day of his reign. During the coup Peter showed confusion, lack of will and agreed to sign the abdication of the throne, imploring his wife to let him go abroad.

The fate of the deposed emperor formed tragically. Catherine understood that, if Peter would survive, she can never be sure of themselves and their power. On the other hand, starting with the reign of murder, she also did not want. Catherine hesitated, apparently intending to enter Peter's Schlusselburg Fortress, which already contained the deposed Elizabeth John Antonovich. In the meantime, she had put her husband in Ropsha castle under the protection of her most loyal guards. Here is where Peter and killed. Some historians admit that Catherine herself had given orders to kill the prisoner, according to others, the guardsmen just guessed the secret desire of his mistress. There is reason to believe that Peter's death was the consequence of stroke. The official version is that the emperor had died of "hemorrhoidal colic '.

. Occurring in the literature conflicting assessments of personality and work of Peter is often related to the fact that this man, with his orphan's childhood, adolescence and crippled tragic end, of course, is sympathy
. His love for music, children's belief in their own talents, ingenuous bravado touching, and good and even noble motives, which he often guided in matters deserve respect. But neither by nature nor by psychological makeup, not in mental abilities, he was not fit to the difficult role of the Emperor of Russia. However, . circumstances of his life and death oddly reflected in the popular consciousness, . and during the XVIII century have repeatedly, . not only in Russia, . but also in Eastern Europe, . appearing impostors, . posing as miraculously escaped the Emperor Peter III.,


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