The beginning of the Troubles. Military action against impostors and rebels
At the end of the 16 century, a series of disasters struck the Russian state. The lands were ravaged by a long Livonian war and confrontation with the Crimean Khanate (the Crimean Tatars approached Moscow twice - in 1571 and 1591). Tens of thousands of inhabitants of the central Russian regions died, were taken to the full, or fled to the outskirts. People left from war, growth of requisitions, turning into free people. It must be said that one of the unexpected positive consequences of this phenomenon was the fact of a more dense settlement of the Urals and Siberia, their economic development.
The government, concerned about the mass flight of the population, which steadily reduced the taxes paid to the treasury and dropped the fighting capacity, the size of the army, began to restrict the personal freedom of the rural population. In the 1590-ies, "reserved years" were introduced - a ban on the transition from one landowner to another on Yuryev's day and "lesson summer" - a five-year term ("lesson") of spying and returning the runaway peasants to their former place. This was a step towards enslaving the peasantry.
The internal problems of the state were aggravated by natural disasters. Three years in a row - 1601-1603, were barren, there were frosts even in summer, heavy rains for weeks, and in September snow fell. A terrible famine, illness and an epidemic of cholera began. According to some estimates, Russia has lost up to a third of the population. Lord expelled their lackeys, servants, peasants, so as not to feed them. Large gangs of robbers were formed, who plundered and plundered entire neighborhoods. The spontaneous "thieves'" movement covered approximately 19 central, western and southern regions of the country. So, in 1603, the government had to send troops to fight the Cotton squad (Cotton), which numbered about 500 people. Cotton was able to turn his squad into a well-organized combat unit. His detachment operated near Moscow on the Smolensk, Volokolamsk and Tver roads. The government, having underestimated the danger of the lackey detachment, sent against it a small detachment of archers headed by okolnichy Ivan Fedorovich Basmanov. 9 September 1603, the archers were ambushed, the deceased was killed, but the royal warriors were able to break the Cotton band, although they suffered heavy losses. The wounded chieftain was brought to Moscow and hanged along with other captured robbers. These were the first mass executions since the accession of Boris Godunov.
The government could not solve the problem of speculation - many boyars, merchants and monasteries had huge reserves of grain, but they hid it or sold it for huge money. Thousands of people rushed to the eastern and southern outskirts - the lower reaches of the Don, the Volga, Yaik (Ural) and Siberia. This seriously destabilized the situation in the country - people were unhappy with the government, crowds of “thieves” appeared. The personal authority of Boris Godunov plummeted, since he was not a "born state". We should not forget about the activities of the “fifth column” of that time - the “agents of influence” of Rome, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and the boyar clans, who sought to decentralize the state, dividing it into “destinies”. The Troubles began - a grand crisis of the Russian civilization, caused by a number of internal and external causes, which shook the founding state of Moscow and the whole society.
In 1601, a man appeared in Poland who pretended to be Tsarevich Dmitry Ivanovich, a “legitimate sovereign” who supposedly miraculously escaped from the murderers sent by Boris Godunov. AT history he entered as False Dmitry I. According to the official version, it was a runaway monk Gregory (Yuri) Bogdanovich Otrepyev, who fled to Lithuania. He belonged to the noble but impoverished Lithuanian Nelid family. Father Gregory Bogdan rented the land from Nikita Romanovich Zakharyin (grandfather of the future Tsar Michael). Grigory (Yuri) entered the service of Mikhail Nikitich Romanov (brother of Theodore Nikitich Romanov, future patriarch Filaret and uncle of the first tsar of the Romanovs of Mikhail Fedorovich). Thus, the first impostor was closely associated with the Romanov dynasty.
In addition, there are other versions of the origin of the False Dmitry. Almost all of them are in one way or another connected with Rome, the Jesuits and Poland. Thus, according to eyewitness Smoot Konrad Bussov, a German mercenary in the Russian service, he was the illegitimate son of the former Polish king Stefan Batory, whom Gregory Otrepyev taught "everything that was necessary to fulfill the plan." According to this version, the conspiracy was born in Moscow, where to know who was dissatisfied with Boris Godunov, came up with a plan to “seize control” in the Russian state. According to another version, it was a genuine Tsarevich Dmitry, who was taken to Poland and trained there by Jesuits. Russian writer, historian of the second half of 19. - 20's start. N. M. Pavlov believed that there were two impostors, one - Grigory Otrepyev, sent from Moscow, and the other - an unknown Pole, who was specially trained by the Jesuits for his role, and he played the role of False Dmitry. I must say that the final answer to the question about the identity of the first impostor is currently not. But one thing we know for sure, Rome and its "tools" (Jesuits, Poland) played a huge role in stirring up the Troubles in Russia.
The impostor, using the secret help of the Polish king Sigismund III, recruited a small army - about 4 thousand people and October 13 1604, crossed the border of the Russian state. Soon he captured the first fortress - Monastyrevsky prison. He received great support from the local population - many Russian people believed in the miraculous rescue of Tsarevich Dmitry and stood under the banners of the "legitimate sovereign." Taking advantage of the support of the population of the South Russian cities, the False Dmitry achieved significant success - captured Chernihiv and Putivl. In the camp of the impostor, Bogdan Sutupov fled, he carried the treasury to the army of Boris Godunov, who opposed the False Dmitry. Only Novgorod-Seversky had stubborn resistance to the False Dmitry, where Peter Fedorovich Basmanov headed the defense. On the night of 17 on 18 in November 1604, the garrison repulsed the assault, the impostor units suffered significant losses. However, the territory controlled by the False Dmitry was rapidly expanding, at the end of November its power was recognized by Rylsk and Kursk, Komaritsky volost, in early December - Kromy and Okolenskaya volost.
Boris Godunov, alarmed by the success of the impostor, strengthened the Eagle garrison and sent a large army to help Basman under the command of Prince Theodore Ivanovich Mstislavsky. It was the first boyar of the state, who could have been elected king three times - in 1598, 1606 and 1611, but he preferred to be on the sidelines, playing a double game. In the future, Mstislavsky will be a member of the overthrow of a False Dmitry, the leader of the Seven Boyars, elected Vladislav Sigismundovich to be king, and after the Poles were expelled, Mikhail Romanov. Mstislavsky had an army of 25 thousand under his command (and with battle serfs, apparently, about 40 thousand), and a False Dmitry was no more than 15 thousand soldiers. However, the initiative was on the side of the impostor. 21 December 1604 of the year in the battle of Novgorod-Seversky, Polish hussars overturned the right Russian flank and bypassing the center of the Russian position, hit the Mstislavsky rate. Boyar was wounded, but he was rescued by the rescued archers. The control of the Russian troops was disrupted and the Moscow regiments went to the train. Due to the inconsistency of the actions of the Polish troops, the army of Mstislavsky was able to avoid big losses, although it was defeated.
In January, 1605, receiving reinforcements, the Russian army again moved to active operations. The forces of Godunov, which rose to 50 thousand people, in addition to Mstislavsky, commanded Prince Vasily Ivanovich Shuisky. The Russian governors moved to the city of Sevsk, not far from which, in the Chelyzhsky prison, the army of the impostor was stationed. 20 January, the Moscow regiments occupied the village of Dobrynichy in 20 versts from Sevsk. On the night of 20 on 21 in January, 23-thousand. Polish-Cossack army of False Dmitry I launched from Sevsk to deliver a sudden blow to the Moscow army. However, this attempt was stopped due to watchfulness of the watch. The Russian governors had time to build shelves in front of the Dobrynichi. Errors that led to the defeat of Novgorod-Seversky, were taken into account. Standing in the center of the infantry infantry from the front and the flanks covered the wagons, between them installed 14 guns. The cavalry was placed on the flanks, slightly ahead of the main position.
The attack on the Moscow army led himself False Dmitry. Initially, the Poles and the Cossacks were successful - the impostor troops overthrew hired horse companies, which stood on the right of the Russian flank and pressed the regiment of the Right Hand (it was headed by V. Shuisky). However, when the Poles turned around and tried to strike at the front and flank of the Russian infantry, the prudence of the Russian command fully justified itself. Enemy cavalry was met by strong rifle and cannon fire and could not overcome the "wall" of carts. The cavalry of the impostor turned to flight. Cossack infantry Falsdmitry, deprived of equestrian cover, was surrounded and destroyed. The remnants of the impostor fled to the border.
The heroic defense of the Cossack garrison of the small fortress of Kromy and the passive tactics of the royal governors, who played a double game, saved the final defeat of the “prince”. Under the walls of the fortress, the royal army was delayed for a long time. This allowed the impostor to recover from defeat, replenish their troops. In late January - early February, Belgorod, Tsarev-Borisov, and Elets and Livny, went over to the side of False Dmitry I, in March.
Capture of Moscow. The death of the pretender
13 April 1605, Boris Godunov unexpectedly died. This dramatically changed the situation in the country. To the besieged Croma sent new troops under the command of Mikhail Katyrev-Rostovsky and Peter Basmanov. An extensive conspiracy in favor of the "legitimate sovereign" arose in the royal army. His most active participants were Prince Vasily Golitsyn and his stepbrother Peter Basmanov. May 7 in the army began a mutiny. Noble hundreds from Ryazan, Tula, Kashira, Aleksin, Seversk cities, German mercenaries of captain Walter Rosen passed over to the side of False Dmitry. The rest of the troops with the governors M. Katyrev-Rostovsky, A. Telyatevsky, V. Morozov and others hurriedly moved towards Moscow.
The troops of False Dmitry moved to the capital of the Russian state. In Moscow, 1 July 1605, a rebellion broke out, which was organized by emissaries of the impostor - G. Pushkin and N. Pleshcheyev. They read out a certificate from the “prince” in Krasnoye Selo and on Red Square. He announced his miraculous salvation to the people and demanded loyalty from the people, promising to everyone “peace, quiet and prosperous living,” a reduction in taxes. Generous promises raised people to revolt. The rebels, with the connivance of the boyars government, arrested Fyodor II, his mother and sister Xenia in the Kremlin. The fate of the king was overthrown was predetermined - 10 June deposed the king and his mother were strangled in his Kremlin house, their bodies were put on public display. People announced that they were poisoned. Princess Xenia was spared, for some time she was an impostor's concubine (he was eager for women), then she was tonsured as a nun.
The murder of Fedor Godunov. Painting K. E. Makovsky (1862).
20 June 1605, an impostor solemnly entered the capital. True, his reign was short lived. The country fell into the abyss and in order to begin to rise, it had to reach the very bottom, to sip grief with full measure. The impostor gave out a lot of promise to his Western patrons and allies in Russia. The part he performed. The false Dmitry carried out an amnesty, returning boyars and princes who were in disgrace under Boris and Fyodor Godunov from references, bestowed tax-paying privileges on southern Russian cities, canceled 10 years taxes in the South, presented Cossacks, restored the right of secession of peasants to Yuryev, began to reorient foreign policy on the interests of Poland, etc.
However, the impostor presented one hand and took it with the other. Thus, numerous “gifts” to faithful people, the cost of a wedding, spending on the impending campaign against the Turks, etc., led to a significant increase in tax collections in regions that did not receive privileges. Many were outraged by the fact that the new tsar (he called himself an emperor or a Caesar), surrounded himself with foreigners and non-believers, constantly violated Russian, Orthodox traditions. Thus, the impostor established a foreign guard under his person, which ensured his personal security by removing the Russian tsarist guards, created the Secret Office consisting only of Poles - it included captains Maciej Domaratsky, Stanislav Borsha, Mikhail Sklinsky and the personal secretaries of the tsar Jan Buchinsky, Stanislav Slonsky and Lipnitsky. As a result, part of the Russian boyars, who thought that the new king would be their puppet, seriously miscalculated.
The Falsdmitry's marriage to the noble Pole Marina Mnishek, the daughter of the Sandomierz governor Jerzy (Yuri) Mnishek, made the situation even more tense in the capital. With the bride and her relatives, an entire Polish detachment arrived in Moscow at 6 thousand people (according to Polish data about 1 thousand). Huge money was spent on gifts to the Poles. For example, Marina as a wedding gift received about a jewelry box worth 500 thousand gold rubles. In addition, another 100 thousand rubles was sent to Poland to pay debts. 8 May 1606, Marina was named Queen and a magnificent wedding took place. Dinners, balls and festivals followed one after another, during a multi-day celebration of "guests" in a drunken rampage broke into the houses of Muscovites, raped women, robbed passers-by, shot in the air, shouted that the king did not decree them, since they themselves put him on throne. The brazen behavior of the Poles, who behaved in Moscow as winners, became a serious factor, which led to the success of the boyar conspiracy.
On May 14, 1606, Vasily Shuisky (he already tried to organize a coup in June, but was exposed and sent into exile) gathered people loyal to him and outlined a plan of action. It was decided on Saturday to sound the alarm and raise the people under the pretext of protecting the tsar from the Poles. On May 15, a denunciation was made against Vasily Shuisky, but the impostor frivolously dismissed him. On May 16, a ball was given in the new royal palace, after which the king went to his wife. He was again warned of a conspiracy, but this time he did not take the information seriously either. At night, Shuisky reduced the German guard in the palace, freed the prisoners and distributed weapon to people. 17 (27) of May Shuisky ordered to ring the alarm on Ilyinka, he was supported by other bell-ringers. Shuisky and his supporters drove into Red Square and began shouting that “Lithuania” wanted to kill the king, and demanded that the townspeople rise to the protection of the sovereign. Cunning success, excited people rushed to kill the Poles.
Shuisky broke into the Kremlin and ordered the murder of an “evil heretic”. The few German mercenaries were swept away, all approximate impostor fled. Only Peter Basmanov tried to protect the False Dmitry, and was killed. The king tried to escape, climbed out the window and wanted to climb down through the woods (the palace was under construction), but stumbled and fell. The arrested impostor was picked up by archers; he promised them patrimonies and property of rebellious boyars for defense. The archers in response to the demands of the rebels to extradite the impostor, asked Martha (Maria Feodorovna Nude, the last wife of Ivan IV), once again confirmed that Dmitry was her son, otherwise “God is free in him.” A messenger was sent to Martha, the messenger who returned was Prince Ivan Vasilyevich Golitsyn, who shouted that the queen replied that her son had died in Uglich. After that, the son of the boyars, Grigory Valuev, shot an impostor.
To be continued ...
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