Posted: February 24th, 2023

Peter the Great

Primary Source Analysis: In this course we will discuss many primary sources, the first-hand accounts of events. The primary source analysis exercise gives you an opportunity to analyze and compare 2 selected documents in a formal written essay. Your essay should be approximately 5 pages in length, double-spaced, and in Turabian format (i.e., the Chicago Style). Your analysis should include a brief summary of the document, a discussion of key terms, and a comment on the document’s historical significance. This is not an exercise in paraphrasing. Journalists report facts; historians search for meaning, as well as facts. For a good introduction to the use of primary sources, see History in the Raw. Title History in the Raw Author National Archives URL Essay 1 — Primary Source Analysis: The first paper should be about 500-700 words (the equivalent of about 2 pages) and submitted as instructed in the Assignment Folder. In the paper, you will analyze the 2 primary source documents below based on this question. While you need to know background info about Peter, be sure to focus your essay mainly on analyzing the source documents. Based on the views of the document, what type of leader was Peter the Great? To what extent did he follow the ideals of absolutism which Louis XIV set the standard for? As in other analyses of documents, you should consider the historical significance of the documents and what it tells you about the time and place it was created. You should consider the context in which it was written, with an eye toward the motives and goals of the original writer. Be sure to identify the author and how his background influences the depiction, and attempt to evaluate how accurate it is. Remember to focus on the documents, its authors, their perspectives, and what they contribute to our knowledge about Peter and his attempt to imitate Louis XIV. . Modern History Sourcebook: Peter the Great and the Rise of Russia, 1682-1725 – Bishop Burnet, Peter the Great 1698 Bishop Burnet , Peter the Great 1698 I mentioned in the relation of the former year [1698] the Tsar’s coming out of his own country; on which I will now enlarge. He came this winter over to England and stayed some months among us. I waited often on him, and was ordered by both the king and the archbishops and bishops to attend upon him and to offer him such information of our religion and constitution as he was willing to receive. I had good interpreters, so I had much free discourse with him. He is a man of very hot temper, soon inflamed and very brutal in his passion. He raises his natural heat by drinking much brandy, which he rectifies himself with great application. He is subject to convulsive motions all over his body, and his head seems to be affected with these. He wants not capacity, and has a larger measure of knowledge than might be expected from his education, which was very indifferent. A want of judgment, with an instability of temper, appear in him too often and too evidently. He is mechanically turned, and seems designed by nature rather to be a ship carpenter than a great prince. This was his chief study and exercise while he stayed here. He wrought much with his own hands and made all about him work at the models of his ships. He told me he designed a great fleet at Azov and with it to attack the Turkish empire. But he did not seem capable of conducting so great a design, though his conduct in his wars since this has discovered a greater genius in him than appeared at this time. He was desirous to understand our doctrine, but he did not seem disposed to mend matters in Muscovy. He was, indeed, resolved to encourage learning and to polish his people by sending some of them to travel in other countries and to draw strangers to come and live among them. He seemed apprehensive still of his sister’s intrigues. There was a mixture both of passion and severity in his temper. He is resolute, but understands little of war, and seemed not at all inquisitive that way. After I had seen him often, and had conversed much with him, I could not but adore the depth of the providence of God that had raised up such a furious man to so absolute an authority over so great a part of the world. David, considering the great things God had made for the use of man, broke out into the meditation, “What is man, that you are so mindful of him?” But here there is an occasion for reversing these words, since man seems a very contemptible thing in the sight of God, while such a person as the tsar has such multitudes put, as it were, under his feet, exposed to his restless jealousy and savage temper. He went from hence to the court of Vienna, where he purposed to have stayed some time, but he was called home sooner than he had intended upon a discovery, or a suspicion, of intrigues managed by his sister. The strangers, to whom he trusted most, were so true to him that those designs were crushed before he came back. But on this occasion he let loose his fury on all whom he suspected. Some hundreds of them were hanged all around Moscow, and it was said that he cut off many heads with his own hand; and so far was he from relenting or showing any sort of tenderness that he seemed delighted with it. How long he is to be the scourge of that nation God only knows. Von Korb , Diary 1698-99 How sharp was the pain, how great the indignation, to which the tsar’s Majesty was mightily moved, when he knew of the rebellion of the Streltsi [i.e., the Muscovite Guard], betraying openly a mind panting for vengeance! He was still tarrying at Vienna, quite full of the desire of setting out for Italy; but, fervid as was his curiosity of rambling abroad, it was, nevertheless, speedily extinguished on the announcement of the troubles that had broken out in the bowels of his realm. Going immediately to Lefort (almost the only person that he condescended to treat with intimate familiarity), he thus indignantly broken out: ATell me, Francis, son of James, how I can reach Moscow by the shortest way, in a brief space, so that I may wreak vengeance on this great perfidy of my people, with punishments worthy of their abominable crime. Not one of them shall escape with impunity. Around my royal city, which, with their impious efforts, they planned to destroy, I will have gibbets and gallows set upon the walls and ramparts, and each and every one of them will I put to a direful death.” Nor did he long delay the plan for his justly excited wrath; he took the quick post, as his ambassador suggested, and in four week’s time he had got over about three hundred miles without accident, and arrived the 4th of September, 1698—a monarch for the well disposed, but an avenger for the wicked. His first anxiety after his arrival was about the rebellion—in what it consisted, what the insurgents meant, who dared to instigate such a crime. And as nobody could answer accurately upon all points, and some pleaded their own ignorance, others the obstinacy of the Streltsi, he began to have suspicions of everybody’s loyalty. . . No day, holy or profane, were the inquisitors idle; every day was deemed fit and lawful for torturing. There were as many scourges as there were accused, and every inquisitor was a butcher. . . The whole month of October was spent in lacerating the backs of culprits with the knout and with flames; no day were those that were left alive exempt from scourging or scorching; or else they were broken upon the wheel, or driven to the gibbet, or slain with the axe. . . To prove to all people how holy and inviolable are those walls of the city which the Streltsi rashly meditated scaling in a sudden assault, beams were run out from all the embrasures in the walls near the gates, in each of which two rebels were hanged. This day beheld about two hundred and fifty die that death. There are few cities fortified with as many palisades as Moscow has given gibbets to her guardian Streltsi. (In front of the nunnery where Sophia [Peter’s sister] was confined) there were thirty gibbets erected in a quadrangle shape, from which there hung two hundred and thirty Streltsi; the three principal ringleaders, who tendered a petition to Sophia touching the administration of the realm, were hanged close to the windows of that princess, presenting, as it were, the petitions that were placed in their hands, so near that Sophia might with ease touch them. Source: From: James Harvey Robinson, ed., Readings in European History, 2 Vols. (Boston: 3) Write an introduction which answers the questions in a general sense, by offering a thesis, i.e., the main point which you aim to prove about the SOURCE. 4) The body of the paper needs to provide examples to prove a thesis, with evidence from the document and an analysis that shows you understand the material and the possible motives of the author. 5) Often it is good to disprove views that would run counter to your thesis. 6) A conclusion should tie the essay together and show that the thesis is valid. 8) Also use your readings as a main background source, cite it and the pages used. Cite any other sources that you might use. 10) As always, write in your own words only . All have been warned about plagiarism. It is an automatic zero. 11) Write double-spaced and in Times New Roman, 12 font, and about one inch margins. 12) Make sure you follow all directions and write a paper with a body of AT LEAST two pages long. 13) Remember that the paper is an essay designed to gauge your thinking and analysis of the validity of a Website. Facts should be used to support your views, and are not an end themselves. You are to explain and analyze the web site and not simply answer by number, but WRITE IN ESSAY FORM. Compare what you find in the sample essay I am including. Evaluate not just what is there in the primary source, but was not included that might have provided more useful insight.

Peter the Great was the Tsar of Russia from 1682 to 1725 and is considered to be one of the greatest rulers in Russian history. He was a strong and authoritarian leader who sought to modernize and westernize Russia, and he is known for his ambitious and ambitious reforms in areas such as military, education, and government.

Peter the Great was an absolutist leader, meaning that he believed in the absolute power of the monarch and did not tolerate any opposition or dissent. He followed many of the ideals of absolutism that were established by Louis XIV of France, who is often considered to be the model for absolute monarchs. Like Louis XIV, Peter the Great believed in the divine right of kings and sought to centralize power and control all aspects of society.

However, Peter the Great did not strictly follow all of the ideals of absolutism. For example, he was more open to reforming and modernizing the government and society than many other absolutist rulers. He also placed a greater emphasis on the importance of education and the development of a strong and modernized military, which were not necessarily priorities for other absolutist rulers.

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