As Skinner writes, Nicholas I
's decision in 1844 to send Vorontsov to govern the Caucasus, then seething with rebellion, "was among the wisest he ever took." Uniquely, Vorontsov was at once an Anglophile and a patrician liberal by upbringing, a hero of the Napoleonic wars, and a seasoned governor-general of the New Russia.
Riding a wave of nationalism, Tsar Nicholas I
in 1837 ordered a design called the Kremlin that found its inspiration in 16th- and 17th-century Russia.
Avrutin starts with a chapter on "Making Jews Legible" under Nicholas I
. The designation of the Pale of Settlement in 1835 and the abolition of the Jewish kahal in 1844 demonstrated the state's desire to limit mobility and to undermine Jewish communal institutions.
Instead, Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern offers a simple, straightforward thesis: after Tsar Nicholas I
reformed conscription in 1827 and included Jews, the Russian Imperial Army treated Jews pretty much like they treated everyone else; and this transformed Jews from repressed "others" into modern imperial Russian Jews.
Moreover, Skinner presents it as the beginning of a single imperial effort that culminated with Nicholas I
's campaign to eliminate the Uniate church in 1839.
Though Catherine II embraced and benefited from the Petrine legacy, others (Paul I, Nicholas I
) were paralyzed by it, and the last tsar, Nicholas II, sought escape in the traditions and ceremonies of Peter's Muscovite predecessors.
Debates about the path that Russia should take continued throughout the nineteenth century, culminating in the Decembrist revolt in 1825, when a small circle of liberal nobles and army officers desirous of constitutional change sought to overthrow Nicholas I
. The successful crushing of the revolt led to gradual moves away from Peter I's Westernization policies.
Becoming Mikhail Lermontov: The Ironies of Romantic Individualism in Nicholas I
Tsar Nicholas I
's long reign, from 1825 to 1855, enabled him to fine-tune the autocratic power of the Imperial Academy.
The book's scope is the 'long eighteenth century', from the city's foundation to the first year of Nicholas I
's reign, 1826 (rather than 1825!), since its final piece, by Patrick O'Meara, examines the circumstances in which the 'Decembrist' suspects were incarcerated and interrogated until July of that year.
And how could a state that repeatedly crushed intellectual freedom, lament Nicholas I
's victimization of Pushkin?
Both he and his brother and successor Nicholas I
, however, shared Catherine's fascination with ancient Rome.