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The Reforms of Peter the Great - Essay Example

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Name: October 17h 2012 Reforms of Peter the Great Peter the great was born on June 9, 1672 in Moscow and was the 14th child of Czar, he ascended to power jointly with his half-brother, Ivan, but since they were underage, they had Regent Sophia their sister who literally ran the country, as she wished through them…
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The Reforms of Peter the Great
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Download file to see previous pages According to Thomas Riha, he was one of the few leaders in the empire who had “… the imagination and ability to offer outstanding personal leadership” (498). He instituted radical reforms in the country’s education military, local government and church by reorganizing his army in line with western standards, creating a navy secularizing the education sector as well and exercising greater control of the reactionary Orthodox Church compared to any of his predecessors. In summary, his foreign policy was aggressive considering that he, “...acquired territory in Estonia, Latvia and Finland and through several wars with Turkey in the south” (“Peter the Great biography”). This paper is an examination of the reforms made by Peter the great, their effects, and the significance they had on Russia. In an attempt to weaken the powers of the provincial government which he considered a threat, Peter allowed the towns to elect their own officials who would be charged with collection of revenue and simulation of trade, the real power behind the local government was Ratusha based in Moscow. In 1702, an elective board that replaced the old system of elected sheriffs governed towns, moreover, in 1724; he changed the system so that local governments could have a quasi-aristocracy of sorts where towns could be self-governed under guilds of elected well off citizens. Nonetheless, these reforms were considerably difficult to implement, practice since local property owners and the provincial governor had immense influence, and their hold on local affairs was extremely difficult to break. Provincial government was divided into eight Guberniia, which were headed by a Gubnator who had absolute power from within the guberniia that were divided into districts known as Uzeda, which by 1718 the increased by twelve in number. Peter considering the forty Provintsiia, in order to consolidate his power he ensured the Gubnators despite their local autonomy were directly answerable to him. In this case, there were forty departments to carry out his orders, however, since not all of them had predefined functions their duties would sometimes overspill into each other creating inefficiency and an allowance for corruption. Peter’s centralized government policy was evident in that “…each of the provinces was ruled by an appointed governor” (Riasanovsky and Steinberg 259). This meant that the governors exercised power at his pleasure, hence were fully loyal to him. Peter’s belief in absolutism ensured that the church would no longer retain its semiautonomous status, as he was interested in its control since it was a very wealth institution among other reasons. In addition, he wanted access to these funds, and although he had tried to modernize it, but it had refused to be changed and remained steadfast in its traditional ways. Furthermore, the church had substantial amounts of land, many serfs and other “properties”; consequently, Peter was uncomfortable because it appeared in a way the church was rivaling him. In order to control the church, Peter refused to appoint a leader of the church after Partricah Aldrich died and gradually took over the church integrating it into the state. In the year 1701, it was placed under a government department known as Monastyrskii Prikaz, and they paid the monks ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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