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Catherine the Great personifies the whole epoch in the history of Russia. Historians estimate it as a subtle and clever diplomat, a versatile man and strong woman. In order to fully assess its activities in the public arena, it is necessary to consider separately its internal and external policies.


Foreign Policy Catherine was aimed at strengthening the country's prestige and role in the political arena of Europe. The empress aimed to expand the frontiers of the state, and the acquisition of an outlet to the Black Sea. In her reign as a result of two wars with Turkey, 1768-1774 and 1787-1792 years the country has gained an important strategic point at the mouth of the Dnieper, such as Azov, Kerch, he joined Crimea and established the Black Sea coast. As a result, the subtle intrigue and complex diplomacy after three partitions of Poland Russia won Lithuania, Kurland, Volyn, Right-Bank Ukraine and Belarus. As a result of the Treaty of Georgievsk in 1783 to Russia entered Georgia.

Thanks to the fine diplomatic role in Russian policy in Europe has increased considerably. Created northern alliance between Russia, Prussia, England, Sweden, Denmark and the Commonwealth against Austria and France, permanently changed the balance of power in Europe. During the second half of the 17th century, Russia has often acted as an arbitrator between the two countries, imposing political conditions of contracts, taking into account their own interests.


Domestic policy of Catherine the contradictory and ambiguous. Catherine II embodies the era of enlightened absolutism in Russia. She opened schools, encourages scientific research, collecting paintings and took care of the transformation of cities and building palaces. In his domestic policy, it has been steadily strengthened the army and navy. Its board of Russian army has increased 2-fold, the number of ships increased more than threefold compared to the reign of her husband. State income countries increased more than fourfold. But at the same time, there were paper money, which led to significant inflation and external debt has arisen for the first time in Russia. Smelting iron Russia came out on top. Significantly increased the share of exports of goods, while trade was extremely raw, and the economy remained predominantly agricultural.

In its policy, the Empress relied on the nobility, whose rights have been significantly expanded. Nobles got right to the depths of the earth, their property could not be confiscated, and they were freed from the obligation to serve. The peasant population was the enslavement of more and more, they were forbidden to complain to the landlord, the peasants without land were sold.

Catherine continued the political course that has been scheduled by its predecessors. She cared a lot about the greatness of the country, but did so at the expense of internal resources. Its policy was quite contradictory.

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