HISB93H3 Professor Dowler Summer 2010 Lecture Note

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24 Jul 2010
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x Time of Troubles begin when Fedor dies (1598-1613) and Boris becomes the leader
x The people cannot accept Boris, elected Tsar, because he was not a descendent
x He had the support of the service gentry for awhile because he favoured them over the boyars
x The boyars opposed him strongly
x The leader of the boyars was Vasilli Shuiskii and he led the opposition
x Boris was not trusted
x Some of the new boyars, the Romanov family, joined the Shuiskii because Boris was their
enemy
x In Muscovy, the princes ruled with the Boyar Duma (partners)
x The Boyars withdraw their support from Boris and he finds himself isolated at the court
x He begins to believe that he has enemies everywhere. He retaliated with spying, paied
servants to snitch on owners, he hired people to eavesdrop and he used the evidence to arrest
many boyars and confiscate their property
x The Romanov fell victim to his fears
x They were accused of plotting bringing down Boris through witchcraft
x The whole family and their relatives were exiled away from Moscow
x The most important was Filaret because he was forced into a monestary and forced to
become a monk
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x The famine was caused by flooding. Many believed that God was punishing Russia because
it did not have a legitimate Tsar
x Boris responded by massive public works programs and he paid the workers out of the
treasury and in order to increase the food supply, he imported food
x Boris is not passive
x In order to purchase the food, the raised taxes on the service gentry and he loses their loyalty
x These years of famine caused a peasants to move to the borders from the central region and
that region suffered from labour shortages
x Boris was one of the first Tsars that was fascinated by Western ideas
x He understood the benefits that Russia could get from Western relations
x He sent 18 noblemen abroad to study the West
x Many of them did not want to return because they liked the west
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x As a result, he was seen as alien as well as illegitimate
x Rumours began to circulate that Boris murdered Dimitrii and that Dimitrii was not dead after
all and that he was living in Poland
x There was a man in Poland that called himself the Tsarivich Dimitrii
x No one knows who he really is, he was probably backed by the Romanovs and other boyars
in a conspiracy against Boris
x The king of Poland, Sigismund saw him as a way to control the Moscow throne
x The Jesuits looked on Dimitrii to help them to Catholicize Russia
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