Peter I The Great And The Westernization Of Russia

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Peter I the Great

Peter I the Great is single-handedly responsible for the Westernization and the modernization of Russia. His multiple domestic reforms and border expansions transformed Russia from an isolated medieval country- that had remained nearly isolated from the Renaissance or Reformation of any kind- into a great modern power.
Peter was born on June 9, 1672 in Moscow, Russia. Peter was the son of Tsar Aleksey I and Natalya Naryshkina, the czar’s second wife. Peter’s birth resulted in little celebration, due to Peter being Aleksey’s fourteenth son.But unlike his half-brothers, the offspring of his father’s first marriage, Peter managed to survive past infancy.
In 1682, Peter was ruling Russia after being chosen by the Boyar Duma
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Peter was the first Russian tsar to sponsor secular education. Countless secular schools were built under Peter’s rule. Vedomosti, Russia’s first newspaper, was created to educate the Russian population. In 1724, the Russian Academy of Sciences was instituted. Peter also believed that a successful military must be well educated.
Peter the Great’s foreign policy mainly revolved around making Russia a maritime power and expanding Russia’s borders. He is responsible for forging Russia’s first navy and reorganizing the army based on the Western standards he observed. Peter personally recruited foreigners to the positions of generals and officers. These foreigners had to be experts of all fields- including shipbuilding, military affairs, the sciences, and the arts.
This military force became helpful to the success of the Northern War (1700-1721) with Sweden. The victory finally gave Peter acess to the warm-water port, the Baltic Sea, that he so desperately wanted. In 1703, Peter declared St. Petersburg the capital of Russia. St. Petersburg was nicknamed the “Window to Europe” due to it being located near the west of Europe, and it being filled with European
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The goal of the Table of Ranks was to abuse of appointments and promotions in service.
In order to enforce these reforms, the citizens of Russia were heavily taxed by the state. Citizens who attempted to avoid these reforms, were required to pay a special tax. These relentless taxes led to multiple revolts in Russia.
Peter’s died on February 8, 1724 from a mix of gangrene and uremia. His wife, Catherine I, was declared Empress of the Russian Empire. This is due to him never naming a successor and nearly all of his children dying in infancy. Peter the Great was buried in Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral in St. Petersburg Russia.
Peter the Great’s many domestic reforms and territorial gains led to Russia becoming a modern and powerful empire. Russia most likely would not be as powerful as it is today if it were not for Peter.
Overall, Peter the Great ruled for the benefit of the citizens of Russia. Peter was a fierce autocratic ruler, but the Westernization of Russia helped Russia become a powerful European force. His taxes, despite being high, were necessary for his many reforms to be enacted.

Sources
"Peter the Great - Domestic Reforms - History Learning Site." History Learning Site. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Dec.

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