Catherine the Great by Simon Dixon

By Simon Dixon

Sought after for her achievements and satirized for her own lifestyles, Catherine the good used to be some of the most celebrated monarchs in background, turning eighteenth-century Russia into arguably the biggest and strongest nation because the fall of the Roman Empire. She promoted radical political rules whereas emphasizing moderation in govt. She should be ruthless while important, yet she charmed everybody she met, joking at inner most dinner events within the Hermitage, which she had outfitted for her personal use. decided to endear herself to the Russians, she made non secular devotions within which she by no means believed.

Intimate and revealing, Catherine the nice examines the lifelong friendships that sustained the empress all through her own existence and locations her in the context of the royal court docket: its politics, its flourishing literature and the very tradition that grew to become principal to her workout of absolute strength.

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He arrived in Alekseyevka in 1800 or 1801, when he had just turned eighteen. From the meshchane he received a cold welcome. Because of his youth, they scorned him and considered him unworthy of participating in the administration of the commune. They soon calmed down, however, when they realized that in my father they had an obedient tool. But Father had other things in mind. Nature had endowed him not only with special talents but also a passionate, noble heart. Father was the kind of person fated to devote his life to struggling against the disorder around him and, in the end, to become its victim.

She died at one hundred years of age, with all her faculties intact. About five years before her death, only her vision had begun to weaken slightly. YD6970. 006-017 1/24/01 10:22 AM Page 6 2 ◆ •◆ •◆ •◆ My Parents A few facts about my father’s childhood have come my way. When Father, Vasily Mikhailovich Nikitenko, was eleven or twelve, one of Count Sheremetev’s agents arrived in Alekseyevka to select boys for the count’s choir. Father had a fine soprano voice, so he was sent to Moscow to join it.

Suspecting Father of being a secret agent of the count, the rich meshchane were very upset at first. Their gloom vanished quickly when they saw they were dealing with a hotheaded, inexperienced youth who would be easy to handle. They calculated that it was only necessary to let his fervor build up a little more and wait patiently for the appropriate moment to strike. In the beginning the local aristocrats still hoped to curb the unwelcome reformer by employing other tactics—peaceful ones. They wanted to marry him off to one of their kin and, by involving him in family matters, make him more compliant.

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