Reform and Regicide
The Reign of Peter III of RussiaUnknown - 1993
The victim of a coup engineered by his wife, the future Catherine the Great, who portrayed him as "a libertine, a halfwit, and a drunkard whose contempt for ordinary decency and for his country made imperative his removal, " Emperor Peter III has received short shrift from Russian and Western historians. Challenging traditional interpretations, Carol S. Leonard argues that the policies and legislation pursued by Peter III during his short reign in 1762 were not foolish and arbitrary but rather were firmly rooted in the traditions of Russian absolutism and the intellectual climate of the mid-eighteenth century. Leonard views Peter III as a serious ruler who, with a circle of talented advisors, instituted fundamental changes of an enlightened nature. Important turning points during Peter III's reign involved the emancipation of the nobility from compulsory service, the secularization of church property, the institution of progressive economic policies, the extrication of Russia from its costly participation in the Seven Years War, and the inception of an alliance with Prussia that was to be the cornerstone of Russian foreign policy through much of the Imperial period.
Publisher: Bloomington : Indiana University Press, ©1993.
Characteristics: 1 online resource (232 pages).
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