Questions tagged [russia]

The largest country in the world, spanning territory from the eastern edge of Europe to Siberia in northern Asia, except for the period 1918-1990, when it was known as the "Soviet Union"

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Why did the Schlieffen Plan prioritize invading France?

AFAIK, the consensus is that the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand led to Austria-Hungary declaring war on Serbia, which led to Russia coming to Serbia's defense. The fact that this would lead ...
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What was the conspiratorial name of Roman Stanislaw Dmowski?

What name did Roman Stanislaw Dmowski before he returned to Warsaw in 1905? in Autumn 1905 after the proclamation of the constitution in Russia, he [returned] to Warsaw, where he could live under his ...
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Were deportations committed by Stalin during WWII covered in Allies' press? [closed]

Was the deportation of the Chechen and Ingush populations (carried out in 1944) covered in the media of the Allied powers?
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6 votes
1 answer
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What was "primitive labor rent" or "mains mortales"?

In this quote from Hellie, R. (1971) Enserfment and military change in Muscovy, Chicago, USA, page 14 (archive.org): B. D. Grekov, in periodizing peasant history, offered the following three forms of ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Did Nicholas II of Russia send telegrams demanding evacuation of Serbs?

During World War I, in 1915, the Serbian army had no other option but to retreat from their territory, over Albanian mountains, to Greece, who was an ally. Just to note that it was in winter, and ...
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13 votes
1 answer
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Why did peasant serfdom last longer in Eastern Europe than in Western?

My concern is for the early-modern period, roughly 16th to 19th centuries. Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Russia seem to provide the best known examples of long-lasting serfdom. The article on ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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Was Russia or the USSR ever involved in a large military embarrassment alongside or against Vietnam?

I was listening to a Russian politician's (2021, pre-war) declaration of what would happen with the current war in Ukraine, and I was caught offguard by him mentioning a Russian military-related ...
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2 votes
1 answer
285 views

Why Finland received so little foreign support during the winter war?

Considering the following four facts: Many western countries helped the anti-communist government during the Russian civil war, League of Nation supports Finland, The war lasts really long comparing ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Is it known if Yeltsin was planning to give up power peacefully if he lost the 1996 election?

In 1995 Yeltsin was considering to declare a state of emergency and cancel the Presidential elections, as there was a large chance he would lose the 1996 election: The question now, some analysts ...
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How large is a 19th century stage house near Kaluga, Russia?

On creating a fiction story I wanted to visit a stage house in the 19th century, and I don't have a reference for how large such an establishment can be on a main road. My fictional history setting is ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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What were women's social conditions in early 19th century Russia?

In "White Nights", one of Dostoevsky's masterpieces, the narrator meets Nastenka, the young girl with whom he falls in love, during a night walk. My question is: from an historical point of ...
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2 votes
0 answers
161 views

Do wars in Europe rarely start on a Wednesday? [closed]

When the Russian ambassador to the EU, Vladimir Chizhov, was asked by the German newspaper Die Welt whether Russian armed forces would start to invade the Ukraine on Wednesday February 16th, as ...
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2 votes
2 answers
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Have sanctions ever stopped a nation from starting or continuing a war?

I am asking about nations that would be considered “Great Powers”. It is my understanding that the U.S. oil embargo on Imperial Japan did nothing to stop Japan’s war in China and actually caused them ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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Were the majority of people killed in the last two Chechen Wars ethnic Russians?

This New York Times article relays the following numbers with the benefit of doubt (NYT: Chechen official puts death toll for 2 wars at up to 160,000 [paywalled]): 160 000 killed, 100 000 of them ...
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Was there any significant cultural shift in Russian Empire caused by the partition of Poland?

Wikipedia article on Tsardom of Russia claims that acquisition of Wild Fields and Kiev Academy caused an influx of intellectuals in Russia, which in turn kick-started later reforms by Peter The Great ...
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4 votes
0 answers
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What was the involvement of the upper social classes of Russia in Kizhi?

Kizhi Pogost, a UNESCO World Heritage site, was built in the 17th - early 18th century in Karelia (north-west Russia). Its architecture is remarkable, and it's quite big. The only personality ...
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22 votes
2 answers
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How and why did e.g. Chechnya differ in status from entities like Armenia?

Chechnya, Dagestan, North and South Ossetia, etc. are Russian republics. In this regard, they differ from "Soviet Republics" like Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, etc. (My particular interest ...
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4 votes
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What type of uniform and cap emblem could my great grandfather be wearing? We have been told that it is maybe a Cossack

This picture was given to me and I was told it was the only picture we have of our great grandfather. He looks quite young in the photo (maybe around 15-16, he was born about 1878). My guess is this ...
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5 votes
0 answers
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What were Russian empresses' position and policy regarding women's role in society and their rights?

There are 4 empress regnants (Catherine I, Anna, Elizabeth, Catherine II) in Russian history, all of whom ruled during roughly the same historic period (18th century). 3 of them (Anna, Elizabeth, ...
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1 answer
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Can anyone find the letter of Tsar Alexander II to Rostovtsev dated October / December 25th, 1859?

I don't know Russian so this is exceedingly hard for me. I am trying to find the beautiful original Russian letter of Tsar Alexander II Liberator (Алекса́ндр II Освободи́тель) to Iakov Ivanovich ...
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26 votes
5 answers
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Why was the northern boundary of the Mongol empire set where it was?

The Question By the latter part of the 13th century, the Mongols' frantic territorial expansion was losing momentum. In the east, their empire reached the Pacific, and their efforts to conquer Japan ...
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7 votes
3 answers
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Who are the 'Tiursk tribe' of Central Asia?

I am reading this passage in a book called Overland to China (1900) which on page 66 makes mention of a Tiursk tribe in Central Asia. Online searches didn't provide much details except referencing/...
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6 votes
2 answers
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Was Russia ready for amphibious invasion of Istanbul in 1914?

I've been reading The Russian Origins of the First World War by Sean McMeekin, in which he makes some very interesting claims about what the strategic situation prior to the July crisis looked like ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
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Were Russians less racist than I thought? [closed]

I recently found out that Alexander Pushkin's great grandfather, Abram Petrovich Gannibal, came from Africa and was black. Apparently he was abducted as a slave and given to Peter the great as a gift, ...
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2 votes
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Did Russian government employ state-sponsored assassins under Russian Empire?

Did Russian government employ state-sponsored assassins under Russian Empire during 1800-1917? I know, killings of many figures disliked by the Tsar were arranged in the forms of staged duels, but ...
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1 vote
5 answers
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Why did no one take Siberia over before the Russians, and how did they do it?

I realize that Russia had ambitions in the east and they took over Siberia. However Siberia was just north of the Mongols really and its islands were easily accessible to Japan in history. They even ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
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Why was Lenin's brother executed, when he himself was only banished?

Alexander was executed. But Lenin was sent abroad. He settled in Germany, before he came back for the Revolution (and, as some people say, to avenge his brother). (A related question.)
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17 votes
2 answers
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Why did Peter the Great change his daughters' title to Tsesarevna?

Having won the Great Northern War in 1721, Peter the Great promoted himself from Tsar to Emperor. At the same time, he seems to have changed the title used by his daughters from Tsarevna to Tsesarevna....
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7 votes
2 answers
417 views

What were the relations between Romania and Bulgaria before WWI?

I am researching the Balkan's involvement in World War 1. Specifically, Bulgaria, Serbia, and Romania. My question is: What were Romanian - and Bulgarian relations in, and around the lead-up to the ...
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49 votes
4 answers
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During the breakup of the Soviet Union, on what basis was citizenship granted or withheld for each of the fifteen new republics?

The politics and economics of the Soviet Union caused large numbers of people to be transplanted from one region to another, for example: The Crimean Tatars were deported to Central Asia; Ethnic ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Is this a pastiche of a particular painting or photograph?

The children's book Zen Ghosts by Jon J. Muth depicts a Halloween in suburban America, with several unexplained figures trick-or-treating in the background. Among them are these two children: This ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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How formalised were the various tiers of Russian nobility during the regency of Sophia Alekseyevna?

I'm a few chapters into Robert K Massie's biography of Peter the Great, and I was surprised to read that, in the aftermath of Peter's seizure of power from his sister and regent Sophia, when passing ...
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Were there other reasons or interests apart from Pan-Slavism for the Russian Empire to support Serbia? [duplicate]

In my History class, I was taught that that the Russian Empire supported Serbia's independence and nationality and fought against the Austria-Hungary Empire due to Pan-Slavism. My point is, were there ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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When did the Russians first employ a successful envelopment tactic?

Greetings fellow history buffs. I read a book on the Soviet Army called, not surprisingly, Inside the Soviet Army. The author, Victor Suvorov (note this is an edit as there was confusion with the ...
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1 vote
0 answers
131 views

What factors led to the differing attitude to (civil) engineering projects between Roman and Russian armies?

While this might sound like a bit of a leap (i.e., why should Roman armies and Russian armies have any similarities), the Romans were considered as one of the first civilizations to use as models (if ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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Have there been any significant developments in the "Norman Controversy" on the origin of the Kievan Rus? [closed]

I've been reading Riasanovsky's "A History of Russia" (2nd edition, so fairly out of date), and it comes out strongly against the Norman theory. Today though, most sources seem to lean ...
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8 votes
1 answer
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How difficult was Muraviev's amassing of troops for the forcing of the Treaty of Aigun, and what effects on development did it have?

I'm reading an account of the Trans-Siberian Railways' construction, and what was interesting was the poor level of development in Siberia, including that roads were very limited and transport ...
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9 votes
2 answers
511 views

Did Germans refuse to take Cossacks prisoners in WWI? If so, why?

The Russian Wikipedia's page about Kozma Kryuchkov, the first awardee of Russia's Cross of Saint George in the First World War, says: После этого случая, освещённого почти во всей тогдашней ...
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5 votes
1 answer
532 views

Did Hezbollah kidnap Russian diplomats, and Russia subsequently dismember Hezbollah family members?

I heard this story several years ago, I don't recall the exact details, and I don't even know if the story is real or not (if it is real, I'm guessing it may be exaggerated). Can anyone confirm this ...
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4 votes
2 answers
207 views

How did Britain and Russia block the railway in Iran?

Karen Armstrong (2000): [...] both Britain and Russia promoted only the technology that furthered their own interests and blocked such inventions as the railway, which might have benefited the ...
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2 votes
1 answer
363 views

Did Helsinki have higher standards of living than Saint Petersburg when it was a part of the Russian Empire?

For over a century Finland was a part of the Russian Empire. It seems that overall Finland was significantly richer than Russia proper in the early XX century (look at these estimates). Was Helsinki ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Was the Kerensky Offensive doomed from the start?

I've been reading about Russia in the Great War during 1917, and what is quite surprising for me is the Kerensky Offensive. Primarily, what is surprising is that the army was in great material terms ...
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6 votes
0 answers
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What specific Medieval Rus waterway engineering examples are there?

I've been investigating a statement (cited below) made in Nicolle's 'Lake Peipus 1242' which describes waterway engineering by Medieval Russian princes but doesn't bring any specific examples. Which ...
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8 votes
2 answers
442 views

Why was Austria given the best chunk in the First Partition of Poland, even while protesting it?

In the First Partition of Poland, Austria was given 2.7 million people, versus 1.3 million for Russia, and almost 1 million for Prussia. Austria got more than twice as much land as Prussia, and only ...
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15 votes
2 answers
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Why was Poland subject to much harsher Russification than Finland was?

A Wikipedia page describes Russification of Poland: Russification in Congress Poland intensified after the November Uprising of 1831, and in particular after the January Uprising of 1863. In 1864 the ...
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10 votes
2 answers
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What did the Baltic Fleet do in Reval in 1904 and when was it there?

I noticed, in @Schwern's answer that the 1904-1905 journey of the Baltic Fleet is cited as having started in (modern Tallinn). This doesn't make much sense as to the best of my knowledge Reval/Tallinn ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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Good books on Kievan Rus era? [closed]

Title pretty much self explenatory. Im a student myself (but not of history), and I am looking for a good book on the period that is not too heavy, but gives good coverage for early east Slavic ...
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5 votes
1 answer
170 views

Did Boris Belousov join in his brother's conspiracy to kill the Emperor?

I'm working on a paper about the Belousov-Zhabotinsky-reaction (a chemical oscillator). I included some information about the history of oscillation reaction, in particular about Boris Pavlovich ...
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6 votes
2 answers
407 views

Identify male uniform 1860-80 north Central Europe single breast trouser boot round cap

This photo is believed to be from 1860-1880 Poland/Lithuania, as the house behind them looks like a Polish thatch house. The man in question is in the center back of the photo. Uniform is single ...
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24 votes
3 answers
4k views

How did the Bolsheviks fund their government? [closed]

I came across this from a telegram sent by a Mr. Lindley in Russia to Mr. Balfour in London.— (Received November 28.) (Telegraphic.) Archangel, November 27, 1918. Principal reason why Bolsheviks have ...
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