Mysteries of the Time of Troubles

Many authors, especially of a liberal sense, like to talk about the “wine” of Ivan the Terrible in the Time of Troubles at the beginning of the 17 century. But why did it not begin immediately after his death or during his time !? Once all its prerequisites have been created, and the country is ruined? After Ivan the Terrible, two more rulers ruled — Fyodor Ivanovich, Boris Godunov, and there was no Troubles with them, although they were much weaker than Ivan Vasilyevich, as managers. It would be logical to assume that under Ivan the Terrible the country was “brought to the handle”, an explosion was to occur in the coming years after his death.

Mysteries of the Time of Troubles

A. Kivshenko. “Tsar Fedor Ioannovich puts a gold chain on Boris Godunov”

Under Fedor Ivanovich (reigned in 1584-1598 years) Russia not only did not weaken, even though the king was a man of a weak mind. So, the Vatican, through Bogdan Belsky ("management" went through the Poles and Boris Godunov), organized a conspiracy against Ivan the Terrible - the doctor Johann Eilof connected with the Jesuits and Possevino was entered into the courtyard. Most likely, since Grozny and finished off, his health was already undermined by a difficult life. But the catholization of Russia under Fedor did not work: B. Godunov eliminated the rival - B. Belsky the boyars hostile to him and the people were besieged in the Kremlin, forced to surrender and exiled. Fyodor was a zealous advocate of Orthodoxy, and through him the Vatican could not embody his plans. In the course of the successful Russian-Swedish war of 1590 - 1593, the Russian army recovered the cities of Yam, Koporye, Ivangorod, Oreshek, Korela that were lost during the Livonian campaign. Successfully restrained the raids of the Crimean Khanate, the southern defensive lines were strengthened, fortress fortresses were built: Valuyki, Voronezh, Belgorod, Kursk, Samara, Saratov, Tsaritsyn and others. Finally, Western Siberia was annexed. In 1589, Moscow received permission from the Patriarch of Constantinople to create a fully independent Moscow Patriarchate. In 1586 - 1593 the years in Moscow built another powerful defensive line - the White City. In Smolensk, began to build powerful defenses, under the leadership of Fyodor Kony. The lands in the south, the former “Wild Field”, were developed in the Volga region. Grew the role of Russia in the North Caucasus and Transcaucasia. It is clear that the role of the king himself in this small - did not interfere. The vector of development was laid by Ivan the Terrible, and his predecessors.

Tsar Fedor Ioannovich and Tsar Ivan Vasilyevich the Terrible.
Vasily Osipov (Kondakov?). 1689 year.
Fragment of the fresco of the Transfiguration Cathedral
Novospassky monastery in Moscow.

During this period, the Vatican conceived a plan to create a Polish-Lithuanian-Swedish superderust to crush Russia and conquer the East to the papal throne. The king of the Commonwealth Stefan Batory was poisoned, the Swedish throne was erected to the Swedish prince Sigismund III. In Little Russia, White Russia and Lithuania, pressure on Orthodoxy sharply increased. In 1596, Brest Cathedral was organized; a number of bishops and dioceses of the Orthodox Kiev Metropolitan Church, headed by Metropolitan of Kiev Mikhail Ragoza, joined the Roman Catholic Church. But to create an association of the Commonwealth and Sweden did not come out, the Swedish Protestants did not want an ardent Catholic King and deprived him of the throne.

Negative processes so far invisible to the eye went through Fedor's board, through Boris Godunov, who was actually the ruler of the state, due to the weakness of the king’s mind. The heir to the throne, Tsarevich Dmitry, was eliminated, due to the childlessness of Fyodor, the actual introduction of the beginning of the serfdom of peasants and some other categories of the population of Russia (decrees 1586, 1592-1593, 1597), so to enslaving serfs (actually the property of the owner) “free slaves” were translated, that is, free people who concluded a number-agreement on admission to the position of a slave, but for a while. After the death of Fyodor, with whom it is also unclean — arsenic was found in his bones in the investigation of the remains of Fyodor — some researchers believe that B. Godunov, who was already a little unofficial ruler of Russia, removed him.

7 January 1598 Fyodor Ivanovich died, and the male line of the Rurik dynasty was interrupted, the only legitimate heir to the royal throne was Maria, daughter of Ivan Androevich’s cousin Ivan the Terrible. Maria Staritskaya returned to Russia during the life of Fyodor, but she was immediately forcibly tonsured as a nun, and her daughter Evdokia was soon poisoned.

That is, the most important prerequisite for the Time of Troubles was laid - eliminated the "legitimate" royal power, sacred, coming from God (or gods, if we consider that the first Rurik were pagans), and Godunov took an active part in this. In Russia, the elimination of, albeit weak, but “legitimate” power leads to chaos, Godunov was not perceived by the “legitimate” king as either the aristocracy or the people.

A.Vasnetsov. Sevenhigh tower of the White City (in place of the modern Cathedral of Christ the Savior)

Boris Godunov (from 17 February 1598 - to 13 April 1605)

The first king, not from Rurik. He continued the repressive policy towards the aristocracy, he was afraid that there are contenders for the throne. Conducted reforms in the European way, even more enslaved the peasantry. In addition, during the uprisings of slaves, peasants, Cossacks, thousands of people were executed. The people noted this: the terror of Ivan the Terrible was aimed at a narrow group of "elitarians", so the people recalled the Terrible Tsar with respect, Godunov also angered the common people. As a result, the government of Godunov and he himself lost the trust of most of the people. Godunov’s character also deteriorated: before it was active and energetic, it was increasingly removed from business, became much more suspicious, first generous to the people, helping to find a court for the “strong”, less and less appearing to the people, petitioners were driven off with sticks.

More and more infected with "magic", just like Nicholas II, surrounded by all sorts of fortune-tellers, fortunetellers, soothsayers, astrologers, holy fools. With the advent of rumors that Tsarevich Dmitry was "alive", he himself sometimes began to fall into doubt.

Long before Peter the Great, Godunov went through the Westernization of Russia: he wanted to open a school with foreign teachers in Moscow, because of the resistance of the clergy failed; he sent the young men to study in England, France, Austria, Germany, however, no one returned, they all remained there; patronized foreign merchants, invited doctors from Lübeck, gadgets, woolen cloths and various craftsmen to the royal service, assigning a generous salary, giving estates; of the foreigners, mostly Livonian Germans, a squad of the royal guards was created; some Russians even began to shave their beards. Foreigners exempted from taxes.

The most important cause of the Troubles were natural disasters.they are in Russia, and in China, always occur at the beginning of colossal socio-political changes. In the summer of 1601, there were heavy rains, and then the early frosts struck, the harvest died, in 1602, the situation repeated itself. As a result, began a terrible famine, it lasted three years. Only in Moscow more than 120 thousand people died. Popular uprisings began, rumors about Tsarevich Dmitry, the “miraculously saved”, began. The first uprisings were able to suppress, but could not calm the country down.

October 16 1604 of the year False Dmitriy, a nobleman Gregory Otrepyev, who fled to 1602 in Poland to Poland, with his squad moved to Moscow. In January, 1605, the royal troops defeated him, he fled to Putivl, Cossacks, nobles, peasants from all over Russia begin to flock to him, people believe that this is the "legitimate king." That is, the force to reset Godunov did not work. 13 April 1605, Boris Godunov was cheerful and healthy, he ate with appetite, then he felt bad, then worse - his ears and nose began to bleed, and eventually died. The king was proclaimed his son Fedor - a clever and educated young man, but a rebellion soon broke out, and his mother was killed. An interesting fact is that the rebellion was headed by the already familiar Bogdan Belskaya.

Boris Godunov

Grigory Otrepyev

He was a figure "created" by the papal throne with the help of Yuri Mnishek, his retinue included a special group of Jesuits disguised as Orthodox priests and fluent in Russian. As soon as the squad of the impostor entered the borders of Russia, an essay about the “miraculous rescue of Tsarevich Dmitry” was immediately published in Italy. This book was immediately translated into German, French, Spanish, Latin. Spread good circulation throughout Europe, its author was the famous Antonio Posevino - it was he who “disfigured” Ivan the Terrible to accept union with Catholicism. That is, information support for the impostor was arranged at the highest level - Rome was then the most powerful control center of Western civilization. From the side of the “bed,” Gregory was also “strengthened” - through Maria Mnishek.

Antonio Possevino, a fragment of the painting “Stefan Batory near Pskov”

As a result, Moscow was under the control of an impostor, behind which stood Rome. Smoot entered the apogee stage: Russia was flooded with all sorts of adventurers, impostors, foreigners, intervention began, insurrections broke out one after another, government structures collapsed.

It seemed that Russia was dead, but the enemies celebrated early. The Russian people took the case of resistance into their own hands, the high viability was shown by the system of Zemstvo self-government, created by Ivan the Terrible, she was able to create parallel power structures. Popular ratifications were formed, military leaders emerged - the most famous Dmitry Pozharsky, business executives and administrators Kuzma Minin. As a result, Moscow was freed, the invaders were knocked out. Russia began a new climb up.

Results: The most important reasons for the Troubles were not the actions of Ivan the Terrible, but the external influence of the Vatican and managerial mistakes, the actions of Boris Godunov. Prerequisites to facilitate the emergence of the Time of Troubles were the suppression of the dynasty of Rurik, natural disasters.

Zimin A.A. On the eve of terrible upheavals. M., 1986.
Skrinnikov R. G., Boris Godunov. M., 1978.
Skrynnikov R.G. Impostors in Russia at the beginning of the XVII century. Gregory Otrepiev. Novosibirsk, 1990.
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