History of Russia Part 2

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Epic History TV’s history of Russia continues! Emerging from the Time of Troubles, Russia fights back against foreign invaders, as Prince Pozharksy and Kuzma Minin liberate Moscow from Polish forces. Russia’s assembly, the Zemsky Sobor, turns to a 16 year old boy, Mikhail Romanov, for leadership. He and the early Romanovs oversee a turbulent period of war, reform and rebellion: all Russian peasants are made serfs by the terms of the Sobornoye Ulozheniye, while Patriarch Nikon’s religious reforms split the Russian Orthodox Church between Reformers and Old Believers. The Thirteen Years War (1654 – 67) against the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth brings Smolensk and Kiev under Russian control, as Cossack renegade (and folklore hero) Stenka Razin leads revolt in the south.

In 1689, Peter the Great seizes power from his half-sister, Princess Regent Sofia. Peter is determined to make Russia a great European power, and travels to the Dutch Republic and England to study the latest developments in science and shipbuilding. He wages successful wars against the Ottoman Empire, acquiring the Black Sea port of Azov, and defeats Sweden in the Great Northern War, winning one of Russia’s most famous victories at Poltava in 1709. He builds a new capital, St.Petersburg, as well as a Russian navy, and reforms education, industry and government. Not without internal opposition, Peter’s boundless energy transforms Russia.

The second half of Russia’s 18th century is dominated by female rulers. Under the reign of Empress Anna Ioannovna, Vitus Bering charts the coast of Alaska and discovers the Aleutian Islands. Empress Elizabeth leads Russia into the Seven Years War against Frederick the Great, with Russian victory at Kunersdorf in 1759, and oversees construction of St.Petersburg’s stunningly lavish and expensive Winter Palace. While Peter III falls victim to a conspiracy by his wife Catherine and army officers, leading to his own death, and the reign of Catherine the Great..

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Recommended general histories of Russia (as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases):
Martin Sixsmith, Russia: A 1000 Year Chronicle of the Wild East
Orlando Figes, Natasha’s Dance: A Cultural History of Russia
Robert Service, The Penguin History of Modern Russia: From Tsarism to the Twenty-first Century

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43 COMMENTS

  1. Блять не было тогда Украины, была окраина, край, граница государства Русского.

  2. Zaporozhian Cossacs never called themselves "Ukraines", they called themselves Russians, and followed Orthodox faith, and absolute majority of them were Russians peasant, who ran away from their aristocratic masters. Cossacs called "Ukraines" their enemies from Eastern Polland, Russians from Galych-Volynean princedom, who changed their fath to Catholic church, and both of these sides used every possible opportunity to fight against each other.
    Also this region has become known as Eastern Ukraine only in Soviet Period, when occupation communist government decided to destroy old Russian culture, so one of their ideas was to transfer to Ukraine and "ukrainize" Western Russia also known as Novorossiya.

  3. Hi,
    Much appreciated how much sense you put in such a short video.
    A wee technical correction though – that time Lithuania was the precursor to modern Belarus rather than modern Lithuania (e.g., their official documents and papers were written in so called "old-Belorussian" language). If I understand correct Lithuania that time was called differently.

  4. I liked how Peter the great modernized Russians and forced them to look like Europeans in every way
    I wished if we had such a great ruler in middle east

  5. The Russian government has always been the enemy of its own people.
    Tsars did that, communists did that and now the oligarchy under Putin is also abusing power and ripping off Russians and making Russians' lives a living hell.
    it will continue to do so because the people in the power are never punished for their crimes against people.
    most Russians do not know that Putin has accumulated over $200,000,000,000 in foreign banks.
    if Russians hang Vladimir Putin in public square, it will send the stark message to all government officials and they will stop ripping off their own people.

  6. The Romanov line died off with Elisabeth, Catherine the Great claimed her son Paul was not Peter lll child . Why historians presist in the saying the house of Romanov lasted 400 years is pusseling.

  7. Russia is a parasite. The history of Russia is the conquest, aggression and plunder of neighboring countries. The history of Russia is the history of the parasite.

  8. The ottoman empire did huge mistake ,instead invading Hungary and Bulgaria in the beginning . They should have used all their might on Russia and dismantled the russian once it for all. Now imperial Russia is everywhere from Chechnya to syria to kazakhstan, next time it will be North africa and East Africa. The Russian military complex loves innocent blood more than american . Their bible commands them to invade ,kill unbelievers and bomb people in their homeland.

  9. Excellent serie and a video… but saying that Polish troops occupied Smolensk (1611-1654) is a mistake. Poles and Lithuanians reconquered Smolensk from Muscovites, which grabbed this city in 1514. Smolensk before 1514 never weren't under Moscow rule. But was during 130 years before under Lithuanian rule. This is a huge difference. Lithuanians get a Smolensk, because prince of independent (then) Smolensk principality of Smolenk, the Swiatoslaw suported a rebelion against Skirgiello, a legal prince in Lithuania. Swiatoslaw also besieged Mscislaw in Lithuania, but rebels and his own troops were crushed. So Lithuanians get a city of Smolensk. And whad did Muscovite state under Ivan III? They just ride on Lithuania lands saying "That they are Russian lands, and now Muscovy principality will be a ruler of whole Russia." As the Muscovites and later Russians. They didn't ask those lands or people living there, do they even want to be under their rule… Muscovites did the same with Novogrod, later with Smolensk. In perspective of next 280 years with whole Lithuania, and even Poland (which never been a Russian land). And also firstly during the time of troubles Duchy of Muscovy was allied with Sweden (Treaty of Vyborg 1609), after decisive Battle at Klushino in 1610, Sweeds turned against Muscovy. And also about siege of Smolensk 1609-1611, Battle of Klushino, Battle under Moscow, and Polish- Muscovy war of 1632-1634 (War of Smolensk), I thing you also should say something. That was really important events for Russian and also Polish history. But in my opinion this is a only this mistakes, and like I said whole video is brilliant ;).

  10. Serfs " live under the tsar sucks ass " . Lenin " we can fix that ", serfs "yay !" . a few years later …average worker in ussr "FML"

  11. Have you ever wondered what Moscow looked like more than 60 years ago?
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UL4e7YABzDc&t=148s

  12. This is the fake history. russia not a rus! Moscow Kingdom was renamed
    by Petro I at 1721 in RUSsia because he believed that great history and
    heir of Kievan Rus was better that small kingdom without history.
    Rus not a russia and was never not involved to the Kievan rus!

  13. You see that Poland still play victim all the time and screaming : EVIL RUSSIA !!! all the time. This should be mention that Poland itself once threaten and opress Russia. No one is sweet angel in geopolitical game and Poland should remember their sins too. Stop becoming cry baby

  14. 1. "Stenka" (humiliative shortname) Razin had a normal name of Stepan 🙂
    2. Ivan VI of course hasn't ruled himself since he was a baby. The sort reign was at hands of Anna Leopoldovna, the niece of recently died Anna Ioannovna (herself a niece of Peter I)
    3. Just a remark – the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg was painted red til right into the 20th century. It can be seen that way on some postcards form the Tsars time

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