Age of palace coups
The era of palace coups in 1725-1762. - thirty-seven-year stage of political instability that began after the death of Peter I. Palace nobility, formed groups, actively interfered in the politics of the country. The solution of the question of inheritance, the struggle for power, the implementation of coups was the main activity of these groups. Pushed the palace nobility to these actions published in 1722, February 5, the Charter of the throne. This provision abolished the existing orders of inheritance (conciliar election and testament), replacing them with personal appointment at the discretion of the reigning sovereign. However, Peter I did not take advantage of this by the Charter. In 1725, on January 28, the Emperor died without appointing a successor. As a result, immediately after his death, representatives of the ruling circles began a struggle for power.
In the regular army created by Peter I, there wasThe privileged part is the guard of the Preobrazhensky and Semenov regiments. Later they were added to the Konnogvardeisky and Izmailovsky regiments. It was the Guard that became the decisive force in the palace coups - which side was the privileged part of the army, that gentry group won. The Guards, in turn, represented a whole gentry class - almost completely formed from it and, accordingly, represented his interests.
The heir of Peter I (in the male line) washis grandson Pyotr Alekseevich. However, the throne was sought by the ruler's wife - Catherine. Peter I had two daughters who were also heirs, Elizabeth and Anna, a minor at the time. The first palace coup was carried out by A. Menshikov in favor of Catherine I. He himself became the all-powerful favorite under the empress.
The era of palace coups in Russia was characterized by a rapid change of ruler. For this period on the throne was six.
Ended the era of palace coupsthe elevation to the throne of the wife of Peter III, Catherine II. Peter III himself was overthrown quickly enough. This ruler completely lost his credibility after the end of the Seven Years' War, as a result of which a peace treaty was signed, where the emperor renounced all the gains and acquisitions in this battle.
The era of palace coups took place in connection with various reasons.
At the forefront were the contradictions betweendifferent noble groups in the question of the Petrine heritage. It should be noted that they all sought to mitigate the course of change in the state - to give respite to themselves and society. However, attempts to defend exceptional narrow-class privileges and interests created favorable conditions for unleashing internal political struggle.
At the same time, by and large, the confrontation betweengroups were, as a rule, reduced to support and promotion of a certain candidate. In addition, the active position of the nobility guard was of great importance. This privileged estate took upon itself, among other things, the right to monitor the conformity of the policy and personality of the emperor to the legacy left by Peter I.
The era of palace coups took place without the participation of the masses. The population at that time was quite far from politics.
The era of palace coups did not entailchanges in the political and social spheres. The nobility groups fought for power, pursuing only their own interests. However, at the same time, each of the six rulers, who was on the throne, pursued a special policy, sometimes even useful to the country.
Before ascension to the throne of Catherine II inthe country as a whole, the socio-economic situation was stable, moreover, some foreign policy achievements were achieved that created the prerequisites for a more rapid development of the state and new achievements in foreign policy.