Background[ edit ] Previously, the Russian Tsars had exerted some influence on church operations; however, until Peter's reforms the church had been relatively free in its internal governance. Following the model of the Byzantine Empirethe Tsar was considered to be the "Defender of Orthodoxy". In this capacity he had the right of veto over the election of new bishopsand upon the consecration of new bishops he would often be the one to present the crozier to them.
Peter believed that targeted reform could not only strengthen his hold on power, but increase the efficiency of the government, and thus better the lot of his people.
While their clout had declined since the reign of Ivan the Terriblethe Boyar Dumaan advisory council to the tsar, still wielded considerable political power.
Peter saw them as backward, standing in the way of Europeanization and reform. He specifically targeted the boyars with numerous taxes and obligatory services, including a tax on beards.
The state was divided into uyezdswhich mostly consisted of cities and their immediate surrounding areas; this system divided the population unevenly and was extremely clumsy to manage.
InPeter abolished these old national subdivisions and established in their place eight governorates guberniyas: Table of Ranks[ edit ] Main article: The Table of Ranks established a complex system of titles and honorifics, each classed with a number I to XIV denoting a specific level of service or loyalty to the Tsar.
Previously, high-ranking state positions were hereditary, but with the establishment of the Table of Ranks, anyone, including a commoner, could work their way up the bureaucratic hierarchy with sufficient hard work and skill.
A new generation of technocrats soon supplanted the old Boyar class and dominated the civil service in Russia. With minimal modifications, the Table of Ranks remained in effect until the Russian Revolution of Peter also taxed many Russian cultural customs such as bathing, fishing, beekeeping, and wearing beards and issued tax stamps for paper goods.
The solution was a sweeping new poll taxwhich replaced a household tax on cultivated land. Previously, peasants had skirted the tax by combining several households into one estate; now, however, each peasant was assessed individually for a tax of 70 kopeks, paid in cash.
This was significantly heavier than the taxes it replaced, and it enabled the Russian state to expand its treasury almost sixfold between and He firmly enforced class divisions, believing that "just as the landowner was to be tied to service, the townsman to his trade or handicraft, so the peasant was tied to the land.
He also created state-sanctioned handicraft shops in large cities, inspired by similar shops he had observed in the Netherlandsto provide products for the army.
All its members were appointed by Tsar Peter I from among his own associates and originally consisted of 10 people. All appointments and resignations of senators occurred by personal imperial decrees.
The senate did not interrupt the activity and was the permanent operating state body. The first members of the Senate were:The reforms of Peter I included all of the following OFFERING better pay for peasants who served for life as professional soldiers.
FORCING his subjects to adopt western European fashions.
PETER I ( – ), known as Peter the Great, tsar and emperor of Russia, – The reign of Peter I is generally regarded as a watershed in Russian history, during which Russia expanded westward, became a leading player in European affairs, and underwent major reforms of its government, economy, religious affairs, and culture.
Peter the Great ruled the Tsardom of Russia from to Determined to reform and modernise the country’s domestic structure, Peter succeeded in turning the Tsardom into a much larger empire that became a major European power. Peter the Great was determined to reform the domestic structure of Russia.
He had a simple desire to push Russia – willingly or otherwise – into the modern era as existed then. While his military reforms were ongoing, he reformed the church, education and areas of Russia’s economy.
Peter’s Reforms of the Russia State Unlike most of his predecessors, not only did Peter the Great recognize the weaknesses of the Russian state, which at the time was greatly influenced by the class of boyars (feudal elites), but also aspired to reform it following Western European models.
Peter's transformations in the sphere of culture, way of life and customs were of pronounced political character, and were conducted by force. The interests of the state, which was developed according to the strict monarch plan, were of the main Peter's concern when performing those reforms.