Peter's besporodnaya entourage, above all Ekaterina and Menshikov, began to push the king to change the order of succession and they succeeded. To Peter’s surprise, Tsarevich Alexei easily denied the right to the throne, and even agreed to his father’s demand to have a haircut as a monk. But Peter did not believe in the loyalty of his son, and especially his supporters (who were simultaneously opponents of many thoughtless Peter's reforms) and decided to keep him with him at all times. While visiting Denmark, he called his son there. Alex felt the danger and on the advice of like-minded people instead of Denmark went to Vienna under the protection of his brother-in-law, the Austrian emperor Charles VI, who sheltered him in a safe place. Peter, in fact fraudulently, managed to get his son back into the country, convicted and executed on trumped-up charges. Alexey was dangerous only because he sometimes told proxies that after the death of his father, many of his entourage would sit on stakes. However, in the monarchical epoch, such an attitude of princes to their paternal grandees was typical rather than exceptional, and only notorious tyrants considered this circumstance sufficient for the repression of the hereditary princes. In an effort not to go down in history as a son-killer, Peter acted extremely hypocritically. He gave his son to the court of the Senate, that is, to the court of the nobles, many of whom the prince and threatened to put on the stakes after the death of his father. With this murder, Peter undermined his lineage and the legitimate dynasty of the Romanovs in the male line. Because of this insane act, for almost a century, the Moscow throne was replaced by random individuals, first in a straight line of women, and then completely random individuals. Tsarevich Alexey was sacrificed to fanaticism and reforms introduced by Peter, but even more so to family intrigues and security guarantees for his new outbred entourage and son Peter Petrovich, born of Catherine. By his decision, Peter created a dangerous precedent for violating the rules of succession to the throne and the rule of his successors was accompanied by numerous palace coups and the power of omnipotent temporary rulers. Less than a year after the murder of Alexei, as a new heir, Petr Petrovich, a degenerate from birth, also died. Peter I, submitting to fate, left the question of the succession to the throne open.
Figure.1 Peter I and Prince Alexei
The short rule of Catherine I and Peter II had little effect on the Cossacks. Dnieper Cossacks, the activities of the St. Petersburg College and asked the emperor to give them a hetman. Peter II closed the college and Daniel Apostol was elected hetman. After the untimely death of Emperor Peter II, the male line of the Romanovs was interrupted and a long period of "Indian" rule began. The first empress in this row was Anna Ioannovna. Her rule was characterized by the dominance of foreigners in the affairs of internal affairs and the consciousness of their military power in external affairs. Russia actively intervened in the affairs of Poland. Poland was ruled by kings elected by the nobility, and candidates were actively supported or rejected by neighboring states. A good basis for interfering in the internal affairs of Poland was its mixed ethnic group, which also professed different religions. Turkey did not stop friction on border issues. But Turkey was involved in a difficult war with Persia and in every possible way made concessions to Russia in an effort to preserve peace in the Black Sea. In the reign of Anna Ivanovna, there were almost continuous wars, in which the Cossack troops took an active part. In the 1733 year, after the death of the Polish king Augustus II, an internal war of aspirants arose in Poland, but after Russia's intervention, his son Augustus III became king. Having dealt with the Polish question, the government shifted its attention to Turkey. Since the Persian Shah Tahmas-Kuli inflicted a heavy defeat on the Turks, the Russian government found the time to start the war with Turkey, and on 25 in May 1735, it began with the attack on Azov and the Crimea. With the start of this war, the Zaporozhye Cossacks, who had gone to the Turks with Mazepa, were finally rehabilitated and adopted again into Russian citizenship. Austria by that time had made peace with France and the Russian expeditionary corps, in which there were 10 thousands of Don Cossacks, returned to Black Sea coast from Silesia. In addition to them, on the southern front there were 7 thousands of Cossacks, 6 thousands of Dnieper and 4 thousands of Slobodian Cossacks. The army easily took Perekop and occupied part of the Crimea, at the same time General Lassi took Azov. Then the Dnieper army was created, which, in alliance with Austria, launched an offensive against Moldova and Wallachia. This army occupied Iasi and advanced on Bender. Don Cossacks were sent on a deep raid on the Danube. However, the Turks managed to mobilize, defeated the Austrians and forced them into a separate peace. Then they forced Russia to also conclude a forced peace in 1739, by which all previous successes of the Russian troops were reduced to zero. Don Cossacks were cut off in deep enemy rear, but managed to break into Transylvania, where they were interned. In this war, under the command of Minikh, the Don Cossacks first appeared with spikes and from that time onions, serving the Cossacks faithfully and faithfully for thousands of years, were left and became the property of history. In the reign of Anna Ioannovna, the Volga Cossacks, which almost ceased to exist, were restored. Ataman was appointed Don Sergeant Major Makar Persian. October 17 1740, the year Anna Ivanovna died.
The short rule of the Brunswick dynasty had no effect on the Cossacks. In 1741, a bloodless palace coup came to power, with the help of the guard, Peter I's daughter Elizaveta Petrovna came to power. After the accession to the throne of Elizabeth Petrovna, the Dnieper Cossacks, after the death of the Apostle, once again left without a hetman, received this right and the favorite of the Empress Razumovsky was made a hetman. Other cardinal changes in the life of the Cossacks in the reign of Elizabeth did not happen. All orders concerned current internal affairs, all existing privileges and autonomy remained inviolable, and no new ones were added. 25 December 1761, Elizaveta Petrovna passed away. The short reign of Peter III was accompanied by dramatic events for Russia, but did not affect the fate of the Cossacks. In June 1762, the wife of Peter III, Catherine, with the help of the guard and the clergy, carried out a coup and removed him from power, and in July he died. After his death, there remained his young son Paul, who was supposed to take the throne by law, and Catherine to be with him regent. But she, supported by a circle of confidants and guards regiments, proclaimed herself the empress, having performed a dubious act from the point of view of legality. She understood this perfectly, and decided to strengthen her position with personal authority and influence on others. With her abilities, she succeeded. 22 September 1762, she was solemnly crowned in the Assumption Cathedral in Moscow, according to the custom of the Moscow kings. She caressed and generously favored supporters, attracted opponents to her side, tried to understand and satisfy the national feelings of all and above all Russians. From the very beginning, unlike her husband, she did not see any benefit in helping Prussia in the war against Austria, in the same way, unlike Elizabeth, she did not consider it necessary to help Austria as well. She never took any action without benefit for Russia. She said: “I’m pretty war-loving, but I will never start a war without a reason, but if I start, then ... not to please other powers, but only when I find it necessary for Russia.” With this statement, Catherine identified the main vector of her foreign policy, which was able to reconcile people of opposing views. In domestic policy, Catherine showed great caution and tried as much as possible to become more familiar with the situation. To solve important issues, she appointed a commission, which was chaired by herself. And questions that took alarming forms were often resolved painlessly. In order to familiarize herself with the situation in the country, Ekaterina undertook several trips around Russia. And her amazing ability to select for himself not only the faithful, but also surprisingly capable and talented Companions admires to this day. And an amazing thing, a foreign queen-German with these qualities and deeds managed to achieve excellent results and enormous prestige not only among the nobility, servants and retinue, but also among the masses. Most historians rightly consider the reign of Catherine one of the most productive in the history of Russia.
In foreign policy, the Polish direction was central. In relations between Russia and Poland, 3 was a complex issue, each of which was very disturbing to Poland, threatened with conflict and was sufficient for war, namely:
- Russia strengthened its influence in Kurland, formally vassal Poland
- Russia sought the freedom of Orthodoxy in Catholic Poland
- Russia had an increasing influence on the Baltic coast, which Poland considered a zone of its political interests.
The last question was particularly explosive. The Baltic coast, which was of great importance for Russia, had a long and complicated history connected with the crusades. Since ancient times, the eastern Baltic (Ostsee) was inhabited by various tribes of the Balts and Ugrians. The appearance of the German population in the Baltics dates back to the end of the 12 century. Simultaneously with the movement of the Tatars from the East, from the West began the movement of the peoples of the German race. Swedes, Danes and Germans began to occupy the eastern shores of the Baltic Sea. They conquered the Livonian and Finnish tribes that lived on the shores of the Gulf of Bothnia, the Gulf of Finland and Riga. The Swedes occupied Finland, the Danes Estland, the Germans colonized the mouths of the Neman and Dvina. Colonization was accompanied by the missionary activities of Catholics. The popes called the peoples of the north to a crusade against the pagans of the Baltic states and the Russian schismatics of Eastern Christianity. Bishop Albert, with the blessing of the pope, arrived with troops in Livonia and built the fortress of Riga. In 1202, the Order of the Sword was founded and he became lord of the Baltic states. The chamberlain of the order became the ruler of the region, and the knights owned land plots and the local peasantry. A class of German knights and a peasant class from the Baltic states were created. In the 1225-1230 years between the Neman and the Vistula in the Baltic settled the Teutonic Order. Created during the crusades in Palestine, he possessed great means. Unable to restrain himself in Palestine, he received an offer from the Polish prince Konrad of Mazovia to settle in his domain to protect his lands from the raids of the Prussian tribes. The Teutons began a war with the Prussians and gradually turned their lands (Prussia) into their possessions. In place of the Prussian regions, a German state was formed, which was formerly dependent on the German emperor. After the Livonian War, unsuccessful for Ivan the Terrible, part of the Baltic was forced to surrender to the power of the Polish king, part to the power of the Swedish king. In continuous wars against Poland, Sweden and Russia, the Baltic (Baltic) knightly orders ceased to exist, and there was a struggle between these states for their former possessions. Peter I joined the Swedish territory in the Baltic States and among the nobility of the Baltic nobility began to Russia. After the death of King Sigismund III in 1763, international struggles around the Polish succession to the throne also began. In 1764, Ekaterina undertook a trip to inspect the Ostsee region. The Duke of Courland, 80 summer Biron, being formally a vassal of Poland, showed her a worthy master. Relations between Poland and Russia began to get complicated. The plight of the Orthodox population in Poland also continued to not improve. Moreover, the Sejm responded to every note of the Russian ambassador Repnin by increasing repression. In Poland, a confederation began between Russians and Poles; legal armed protection of their rights. To the aid of the Polish confederates were France, the Pope and Turkey. At the same time, the Haidamak movement led by Maxim Zheleznyak began in Polish Ukraine. The king turned to Moscow for help and the Haidamaks were scattered by the Russian army, and Zheleznyak was captured and exiled to Siberia. In response, the Turks demanded the withdrawal of Russian troops from Poland, after the refusal another Russian-Turkish war began. 15 January 1769, the Crimean Khan Giray invaded Elizabethan province, but was beaten off by serf artillery. This was the last raid of the Crimean Tatars on Russian soil. On the Bessarabian direction, the Russian army advanced and occupied Iasi, then all of Moldova and Wallachia. On the Don direction, Azov and Taganrog were occupied. The following year, the Turks suffered a crushing defeat at Bender and Cahul. Corps Potemkin took Ishmael. The Mediterranean squadron of Count Orlov burned down the Turkish fleet in Chesme. In 1771, a new Crimean front was formed, which occupied Perekop, then the entire Crimea and brought it out of the war and the Turkish patronage. With the mediation of Austria and Prussia, negotiations began in Focsani, but the Turks refused to recognize the independence of the Crimea and Georgia and the war resumed. The Russian army crossed the Danube and occupied Silistria. Only after the death of Sultan Mustafa was a peace treaty concluded in Kucuk-Kaynardzhi, forced and extremely disadvantageous for Turkey. But even in Russia, there was restlessness, at that time a mutiny began that went down in history as the “Pugachev Rebellion”. Many circumstances set the stage for such a riot, namely:
- discontent of the Volga peoples with national oppression and arbitrariness of the royal authorities
- discontent of mining workers with hard, hard labor and poor living conditions
- Cossack discontent with harassment of the authorities and theft of atamans appointed since the time of Peter the Great
- historians do not deny the “Crimean-Turkish trace” in these events, some facts from Pugachev point to this. But Emelyan himself did not recognize the connection with the Turks and Crimeans, even under torture.
Although the discontent was universal, but a mutiny began among Yaik Cossacks. Yaik Cossacks in the internal life enjoyed the same rights as the Don. Lands, waters and all lands were the property of the Army. Fishing was also duty free. But this right was violated and the Army began to impose taxes on catching and selling fish. The Cossacks complained about the chieftains and the foremen, and a commission arrived from St. Petersburg, but it took the side of the foremen. Cossacks raised a riot and killed the foremen and crippled the capital commissars. Punitive measures were taken against the Cossacks, but they fled and disappeared into the steppes. At this time Pugachev appeared among them. He declared himself a miracle who had survived the death of Peter III, and under his name began to publish manifestos with the promise of wide freedoms and material blessings to all disgruntled. There were dozens of such impostors at the time, but Pugachev turned out to be the most successful. In fact, Pugachev was a Don Cossack from Zimoveyskaya stanitsa 1742, born. During military service he participated in the Prussian campaign, was in Poznan and Krakow, rose to the orderly regimental commander. Then he participated in the Polish campaign. In the Turkish campaign participated in the capture of Bender and was promoted to Cornet. In 1771, Pugachev got sick "... and his chest and legs were rotting," returned to Don due to illness and was treated. Since 1772, on suspicion of criminal activity, he has been on the run, visited the Terek Cossacks, in the Crimean-Turkish territory beyond the Kuban Cossacks-Nekrasovtsy, in Poland, lived among Old Believers. He was arrested several times but escaped. After another runaway from Kazan prison in May 1773, he headed to the lands of the Yaik Cossacks and the disgruntled began to gather around him. In September 1773, they launched an offensive on the border villages and outposts, easily taking away the weak border fortifications. Dissatisfied with the crowds joined the rebels, a Russian revolt began, as Pushkin later said, "senseless and merciless." Pugachev moved through the Cossack villages and raised Yaik Cossacks. His assistant Khlopusha raised and excited the factory workers, Bashkirs, Kalmyks and inclined the Kirghiz-Kaysak Khan to an alliance with Pugachev. The rebellion quickly swept the whole Volga region to Kazan and the number of insurgents reached several tens of thousands of people. Most of the Ural Cossacks, workers and peasants turned to the side of the rebels, and the weak rear units of the regular army were defeated. Not many people believed that Pugachev was Peter III, but many followed him, such was the thirst for rebellion. The scope of the uprising accelerated the conclusion of peace with the Turks and regular troops led by General Bibikov were sent from the front for suppression. From the regular army, the rebels began to suffer defeat. But General Bibikov soon in Bugulma was poisoned by a captive Polish confederate. Lieutenant-General A.V. was sent to suppress the uprising. Suvorov, who captivated Pugachev, and then escorted him to Petersburg in a cage. At the beginning of 1775, Pugachev was executed on Bolotnaya Square.
"Execution of Pugachev." Engraving from a picture by A.I. Charlemagne. Mid XIX century
For Don, the Pugachev rebellion had a positive meaning. On the Don, the Council of Elders of 15-20 was ruled by a man and a leader. The circle met only annually on January 1 and held elections for all elders, except for the ataman. The prescription of chieftains introduced by Tsar Peter (most often life-long) strengthened the central authority in the Cossack regions, but at the same time led to the abuse of this authority. Under Anna Ioannovna, the glorious Cossack Danil Efremov was appointed Don Ataman, after some time he was appointed Military Ataman for life. But the government spoiled it, and when it began the uncontrolled domination of power and money. In 1755, for many achievements of the chieftain, he was granted the rank of major general, and in 1759, for his services in the Seven Years War, he was also a secret adviser with being in charge of the Empress, and his son Stepan Efremov was appointed ataman on the Don. Thus, the power on the Don by the highest order of the Empress Elizabeth Petrovna turned into hereditary and uncontrolled. From that time on, the Ataman family passed all moral boundaries into acquisitions, and in retaliation, an avalanche of complaints fell upon them. Even with 1764, according to the complaints of the Cossacks, Catherine demanded from Ataman Efremov a report on income, land and other possessions, his and foremen’s fisheries. The report did not satisfy her, and according to her instructions, the commission on the economic situation in the Don worked. But the commission worked not shaky, not roll. In 1766, a land survey was carried out and illegally occupied yurts were selected. In 1772, the commission finally gave an opinion on the abuse of ataman Stepan Efremov, he was arrested and sent to St. Petersburg. This case, on the eve of the Pugachev rebellion, took a political turn, especially since Ataman Stepan Efremov had personal services to the empress. In the 1762 year, being at the head of the light village (delegation) in St. Petersburg, he took part in the coup that raised Catherine to the throne and was awarded a nominal weapons. The arrest and the investigation into the case of Ataman Efremov defused the situation on the Don and the Don Cossacks turned out to be practically not involved in the Pugachev rebellion. Moreover, the Don regiments took an active part in suppressing the rebellion, capturing Pugachev and reconciling the rebellious regions over the next few years. If the empress had not condemned the thieving chieftain, Pugachev would undoubtedly find support on the Don and the scope of the Pugachev rebellion would be completely different.
According to Kuchuk-Kaynardzhsky world, Russia acquired the Azov coast and decisive influence in the Crimea. The left coast of the Dnieper to the Crimea was called Little Russia, it was divided into 3 provinces, the boundaries of which did not coincide with the former borders of the regiments. The fate of the Dnieper Cossacks was made dependent on the measure of their adaptation to the conditions of peaceful labor. The Zaporozhye Cossacks turned out to be the least suitable for such a lifestyle, because their organization was adapted exclusively for military life. With the termination of the raids and the need to repel them, they had to cease to exist. But there was another good reason. After the uprising of Pugachev, in which some Zaporizhzhya Cossacks took part, there was a fear that the uprising would spread to Zaporizhia and it was decided to eliminate Sich. 5 May 1775, the army of Lieutenant-General Tekeli at night approached Zaporozhye and removed the posts. The suddenness demoralized the Cossacks. Tekeli placed the artillery, read the ultimatum and gave 2 an hour to think. The elders and the clergy convinced the Cossacks to surrender the Sich. In the same year, by a decree of the Empress, the Zaporizhian Sich was destroyed administratively, as expressed in the decree, “as a godless and unnatural community, not suitable for extending the human race.” After the liquidation of the Sich, the former foremen were given a nobility and given a place of service in various parts of the empire. But Catherine did not forgive the previous insults to the three foremen. Kosheva ataman Peter Kalnyshevsky, military judge Pavel Golovaty and clerk Ivan Globa for treason and transitions to the side of Turkey were sent to different monasteries. The lower ranks were allowed to join the hussar and dragoon regiments of the regular army. The discontented part of the Cossacks first went to the Crimean Khanate, and then to the territory of Turkey, where they settled in the Danube Delta. Sultan allowed them to establish the Transdanian Sich (1775 − 1828) under the terms of providing the 5-thousandth army to their army.
The dissolution of such a large military organization as the Zaporizhzhya Sich brought a number of problems. Despite the departure of a part of the Cossacks abroad, about 12-ti thousand Zaporozhets remained in the citizenship of the Russian Empire, many did not withstand the strict discipline of regular army units, however, the empire could serve and wanted to continue. The Cossacks were personally sympathized with Grigory Potemkin, who, being the "chief commander" of the attached Black Sea coast, could not help but use their military force. Therefore, it was decided to restore the Cossacks and in 1787, Alexander Suvorov, who, by order of Empress Catherine II, organized army units in southern Russia, began to form a new army from the Cossacks of the former Sich and their descendants. The great warrior treated all assignments extremely responsibly and also to this. He skillfully and thoroughly filtered contingent and created the "Army of the faithful Zaporozhtsev." This Army, renamed 1790 in the Black Sea Cossack Army, very successfully and adequately participated in the Russian-Turkish war 1787 — 1792. But after the death of Prince Potemkin, having lost his patronage, the Cossacks felt extremely insecure on the allotted lands. At the end of the war, they were asked to Kuban, closer to the war and the border, away from the king's eye. As a token of gratitude for their faithful service in the war, they separated from Catherine II the territory of the right-bank Kuban, which they immediately settled in 1792-93. In the Azov region, the ancient cradle of their Cossack family, they returned, after seven hundred years of their stay on the Dnieper, with a language that became one of the dialects of Cossack speech to our time. The Cossacks, remaining in the Dnieper basin, soon melted among the masses of the multiplying mixed ethnic Ukrainian population. The Black Sea Army (which later became part of the Kuban) took an active part in the Caucasian War and other wars of the empire, but this is a completely different and very glorious history.
Gordeev A.A. History of the Cossacks
Letopisnoe.povestvovanie.o.Malojj.Rossii.i.ejo.narode.i.kazakakh.voobshhe.1847. A. Rigelman