The formation of absolutism in Russian state




1.Prerequisites of formation and legalization of absolutism

2.The social structure


2.2Classes and ranks

3. State apparatus

. The military and judicial reforms of Peter I

. Development of the law during the period of absolute monarchy


5.2Civil law;

5.3 Family law

Conclusionlist of the used literature

end of XVII-XVIII-th centuries in the history of Russia state marked by the emergence, legalization and the actual establishment of the absolute monarchy.monarchy in Russia was deposed only in 1917 in a result of the February Revolution. Its development can be divided into five stages: - an absolute monarchy of the second half of XVII century with the Boyar Council and the Boyar aristocracy;- the bureaucratic-aristocratic monarchy of the XVIII century with elements of enlightened absolutism,- absolute monarchy in the first half of XIX century until the reforms of 1861- from 1861 to 1904 - Starting of transformation absolutism into a bourgeois monarchy,- from 1905 to 1917 - when absolutism had made "another step towards the bourgeois monarchy".


Economic development in the late XVII beginning of the XVIII century was characterized by progress in the field of agriculture, the growth of commodity production, the development of manufacturing large-scale, nationwide market consolidation and expansion of foreign trade. This led to the emergence of bourgeois relations, had intensified the class struggle, strained the conflict between the bojars and nobility, between the feudal lords and the posadsky population, between Russian and foreign merchants.conditions to establish absolutism was the need to fight for access to the sea, as only a strong central authority could conduct costly war.of absolutism in Russia were (in contrast to European countries) the weakness of the emerging bourgeoisie and the lack of struggle between the nobility and the bourgeoisie, on the one hand, and the worsening of class struggle of peasants and landlords who demanded a consolidation of the ruling class - on the other hand.

The establishment of absolutism in Russia noted by the following events: In the second half of XVII century the Assembly of the land (Zemsky Sobor) ceased to be convened , which greatly limited the power of the monarch. However, were continuing to call meetings of the various classes.

Prikaznaya system was strengthened and it directly subordinated to the Tsar.

-The regular army was created and the monarch had become less dependent on the noble army.

Tsar got the financial independent and had the opportunity to establish and maintain a huge state apparatus.

Decreased importance of the Boyar Council (Duma) (in 1688 there were 68 members from the nobility, and 28 - from the boyars). "The Secret" or "privay" Council (blizhniaia Duma) had taken the place of Boyar Council. In 1711, the functions of the Council had completely switched to the "Privay Chancellary". The Chancellary Council office consisted of 8-14 people and was called Konziliey. In February 1711 with the establishment of the Senate, Privay Council had ceased to exist as the final organ which was limited the power of the monarch.

In this period took place an intense process of subordination of the church to the state. October 20, 1721 after the victory in the Northern War the Senate and the Holy Synod was given to Peter I the title Father of the Native land, the Emperor of all Russia, which also played a role in strengthening the power of the monarch.

At the beginning of the XVIII century absolutism received the legislative confirmation. In the interpretation of article 20th of Military statute 1716 : ... yego velichestvo yest samovlastnyi Monarh nikomu na svete o svoih delah otvetu dat ne dolzhen ; no silu i vlast imyeet svoi Gosudarstva i zemli , yako Hristianskii gosudar po svoyei vole i blagomneniyu upravlyat., in Russia at the end of XVII - beginning of XVIIIth century absolutism had formed as the state form of the dictatorship of the feudal class. By the class nature he expressed primarily the interests of the nobility and the emerging merchant class. And for the peasantry and urban lowers it had meant rising the exploitation.


feature of the social structure in the period of formation absolutism was the trends of legal regulation of the position of each class. Society at that time was divided into four classes:

) the nobility,

) the clergy,

) townsmen,

) the peasantry.


legal status of nobility was enshrined in legislation. The Law Code 1649 known as the Ulozhenie and The Decree on Primogeniture (March 23, 1714) was virtually equalized the legal status of manors and ancestral lands under the general term "real thing", with right of inheritance. According with these documents noblemen had a monopoly on land ownership.the decree of the poll census of 26 January 1718 was enshrined in law the position of the nobility as an exempt class, unlike other classes.role in strengthening the aristocratic dictatorship played The Table of Ranks of January 24, 1722.

The Table of Ranks recognized three fundamental types of service: military <#"justify">Under Peter I by his decree nobles began service with the rank of the soldier, and served for life, and from 1730 - 25 years beginning from 20 years.


I and IIHigh Excellency (Vashe vysokoprevoskhoditelstvo)III and IVExcellency (Vashe prevoskhoditelstvo)VHighly Born (Vashe vysokorodie)VI, VII and VIIIRight Highly Born (Vashe vysokoblagorodie)XI, X, XI, XII, XIII and XIVWellborn (Vashe blagorodie)to the manifesto of Peter III "Manifesto Freeing Nobles from Obligatory Service " in 1762 the nobles were exempted from compulsory military and civil service.decree of 1760 nobles were entitled to banishing of guilty peasants to Siberia, and from 1765 - to hard labor.most important act was adopted by Catherine II, which recognized the privileges of the nobility, was "The letters patent to the nobility" in this charter the nobles:

exempt from the binding service;

acquired in the ownership bowels of their land;

-had the right to trade and to be owner of factories;

exempted from taxes, and corporal punishment;

got the right to establish Class meetings in each province. Nobles had a number of personal advantages. Noble rank could be transferred to the wife and children (and husband had a right to transmit nobility to his wife but the wife to her husband - couldnt). The nobles had the right to enlisting to other countries. The noble court was created (an elected judicial authority). The nobles had family coat of arms, they compiled an ancestral noble books.

The nobles were divided into the following categories:

real noblemen who have descended from royalty;

-military aristocracy;

eightclasses nobility;

foreign nobility;

titular nobility (the princes, counts, barons);

ancient nobles (with a genealogy of over 100 years). However, the nobleman could be deprived of noble titles in the following cases: the violation of the oath;

the treason;

commiting robbery, burglary, crimes for which deprived the honor or corporal punishment, as well as incitement to commit a crime;

committing other deceitful acts.

The clergy in Russia for a long time remained a closed estate. However, at the end of the beginning of the XVII-XVIII centuries had increased the legal regulation of the clergy, and there was a process of subordination to the State. The Law Code of 1649 restricted the right to purchase the estates, to have a white suburb and commercial establishments in the posads. From XVII in wartime, one in five of the peasants from spiritual estates called up for service in the foot.1722 were established strict rules of entry into the spiritual class from the nobility (only the youngest son of a nobleman on reaching 40 years).to the Decree of 1764 (February 26) was carried out the secularization of church and monastic lands, and the diocesan bishops and monasteries were transferred to regular salaries. As a result, more than 800 thousand peasant moved into the category of state.

Townsmen (urban inhabitants) -were the majority of the urban population and in accordance with the Deed to the rights and benefits of the cities of Russia from 1785 were divided into 6 categories (parts).

. These real people (have land and buildings in the city, bankers, etc.);2. Merchants in their turn were divided into three guilds (the first - with capital from 10 to 50 thousand rubles. The second - from 5 to 10 thousand rubles; the third - from 1 to 5 thousand rubles.)

. Artisans which were entered in guilds;

. Foreign visitors and foreign persons registered in the burgers;

. Eminent citizens.

. posadsky population, which were not included in the first 5 categories. The peasants formed the bulk of the dependent population and they were the primary productive force in society.peasants were divided into the following categories:

State farmers, whose numbers decreased significantly (especially under the Catherine II ruling), paid dues to the state and carried duties; - Serfs (privately owned) carried the obligations: the quit-rent (obrok) and corvee.

The monastery and church

Palace (the king's estates peasants);

Possessional (attributed to the factory);

Odnodvortsy (descendants of the servants, settled on the outskirts of the state).peasants paid a poll tax (introduced by Peter I in 1719), carried corvee and quit-rent, recruit, Postojna and mostovaya duties.called the impoverished peasants and townspeople. In the XVIII century, they represent an entire social group.

absolutism social reform state law


During the period of absolutism, a lot of attention was paid to strengthening the state apparatus. First, Peter I, Catherine II then, had carried a series of reforms, in the result of which was formed branched, highly centralized, bureaucratic state apparatus.

The Government Senate was created in 1711. Boyar Duma had ceased to exist. The Senate was the highest executive, administrative, judicial body, according toStatute of the Senate 1722. It was consisted from 9 people, which were appointed by Tsar. The Senate had had functions of the supreme state power in the case of absence of the monarch. The office of general prosecutor was established in the Senat as. He was an inspector the activities of the Senate, he could suspend the execution of the decisions of the Senate. The chief role of the Senate was to look over and guide the governments of eight provinces, which were divided for the efficiency of tax collection and levy of troops. However such relationship wasn't always smooth, so Peter wholly restructured the central government.I created colleges, government departments, to distribute the various tasks of the government. Each college was constituted of a board of men who checked on each other. With the establishment of colleges, the Senate assumed additional roles. It coordinated and checked the works of the colleges, acted as the supreme court, and drafted legislation. The office of Procurator of the Senate was also created to check the senators by presiding over their meetings and signing every decree.

During the reign of the Empress Catherine I, Senate lost power, and Supreme Privy Council, a body of six favorites led by Catherine, became influential. The Supreme Privy Council was at first retained for a while because it was part of the condition Empress Anna had to accept in order to have the throne. Though it seems like such council was a step toward a constitutional government, it actually was just a scheme to keep the influence of the council and the noble families dominating it. Most of the gentry wanted autocracy rather than the "self-perpetuating oligarchy". (11) <#"justify">4.THE MILITARY AND JUDICIAL REFORMS OF PETER I

the beginning of the XVIII century Russia was in an extremely unfavorable foreign environment. Russia was constantly threatened by Sweden, Poland and Turkey. England, Holland and France have taken the path of capitalist development, began the struggle for colonies and also threaten Russia.political situation in the country remained difficult because the final enslavement of the population threatened by social explosion. Under these conditions, especially the ruling class, were required guarantees the successful resolution of internal and external problems. The absolute monarchy was such State with a strong bureaucracy, army and army in the Russian history was connected with the name of Peter I.was carried out military reforms:

were eliminated Streltsy troops and nobles' levies;

-established new ways of manning the army and navy by officers and soldiers;

developed strong foundations of military service;

defined the legal status of soldiers and officers;

changed the organizational structure of the army;

reorganized military administration;

established a new order of material support of personnel;

changed teaching methods and education of the troops;

conducted rearmament of the army;

improved supply system.

Legalization of the regular army got in the Military regulations 1716 and the Maritime Statute 1720.first act was the decree of 8 November 1699 on a voluntary entry into the soldiers regular part ohotchih people of all classes.had received the freedom in the case of admission to the soldiers, and contrakt slavers were freed from bondage.of 20 February 1705 "On the recruitment of the man with 20 yards" was established recruiting service, entered a unified system of recruitment of regular troops. Under the decree, subjects of recruiting were tax-paying classes: peasants of all types and townsmen. Recruitment conducted periodically. In due time from 20 yards had been called up a physically healthy recruit: first, at the age of ot15 to 20 years, and later from 17 to 32 years. Escaping of recruits was severely punished. In case of death, death in battle or escaping of recruits instead of them was taken a soldier from the people of the same yards.1706 a decree was issued, in which recruits were recruited from boyar estates (ot300 yards - one recruit) and from the elderly, injured landowners, landlords widows and merchants (from 100 yards - one recruit).significant event was the adoption on Jan. 2, 1722 such an legal act as the "Table of Ranks of all ranks of military, civilian, court." In accordance with the Table of Ranks, the command of the army and the navy received military ranks, which were divided into ground forces, the guards, and artillery and naval. All posts have been divided into 14 classes (grades). In 1700 the Line statute (Stroevoi ustav) were adopted and a complement to it, "Company commander ranks"(Rotye Chiny) and "Military Articles"(Stati voinskie). These documents contained the requirements for officers and soldiers.

The Military Statute was adopted in 1716, which summed up the experience of the activity of regular army.Statute consists of 4 parts:I - defined the activities of all military units and institutions - were regulated the rights and duties of the higher ranks from the Generalissimo and Field Marshal to the General Warder.II - The Military Article with a brief interpretation of the contents of the norm of criminal law.III - short representation of processes or litigation, including criminal-procedural law and the structure of military courts.IV - on ekzertsitsii (trainings), on the preparation for the march, on ranks and posts of regimental ranks., the result of military reforms of the early XVIII century in Russia was established regular army and navy. The army was a national, completed on the basis of recruiting. By its nature, it was the army of the feudal-serf state support of absolutism.significant event in the first quarter of XVIII in law was the military-judicial reform.I in 1702 created the military courts. The structure and activities of these courts were regulated by the Military Statute 1716. The court of first instance for Military Court was a regimental court. It included a chairman (prezus) - colonel, lieutenant colonel or major, and 6 assessor (2 captain, 2 lieutenants and two ensignes).instance for the regimental courts was General krigireht (court). It also carried on the most important cases. Its chairman was the Senior General and 6 assesors.court had its jurisdiction:

All crimes against the state,

crimes of entire parts of the troops,

crimes committed by senior officials,

crimes against the higher ranks.structure of each court: the auditor (he was checking the legal side of case) and the recorder.

The Court was not a permanent body, and was appointed for each case. Assessors were chosen by the chairman.

The most serious crimes were: treason, attempted by the tsar, discussion and conviction of his actions and intentions, attacks on officers, resisting their orders, insubordination, refusal to serve, countering the courts and police.

Activities of the Navy and personnel were regulated by statutes, regulations and instructions.



this period, the sources of law were legislative acts issued in the form of decrees, orders, statutes and manifestos.most important events were determined by decrees:

The Decree on Primogeniture March 18, 1714

The Table of Ranks January 2, 1722

Decree on the form of court Nov. 5, 1723of public administrations, the structure and order of their work were established by Orders:

The General Order of the College February 29, 1720

Order of the Chief Magistrate on January 16, 1721

The Spiritual Order of January 29, 1721the statutes were understood norms of law, which were regulated a particular area of state activity:

The Statute of the bills in 1722

The Statute on Public Order 1782

The Military Statute 1716

The Maritime Statute 1720most important and solemn events were declared by Manifestos. For example: A Manifesto for the granting of freedom and liberty to all the Russian nobility 1762.1715 were created:

"The Military Articule" - the Criminal Code, and "The short representation of processes or litigations - the Procedural Code.Sobornoe ulogenie of 1649 also was the source of law. Attempts to create a new Legal Code under Peter I and Catherine II were unsuccessful because of contradictions in the interests of different social classes, which were blocked the committee's work.


attention was paid to the regulation of ownership of real estate, primarily on the land. A long process to establish a single legal regime of ancestral lands and manors that had received the name of "real estate"was completed. The following settings were determined by the decree dated March 23, 1714 "On the order of inheritance in personal and real estates ":

Land ownership could be inherited one of the sons, but in the absence of the will, it was inherited by the elder son, other members of family received a property and conscriptioned.

daughters inherited the real estate in the case of sons' absence,

forbidden to dispose the real estate except of the sale, except of the special needs

The elder son and his descendants had the right to purchase the real estate for 40 years (in 1837 this term was reduced to 3 years, and the grandson's right was granted to all relatives).

The Decree on Primogeniture was repealed in 1781 at the request of the nobility. By decree of 10 December 1719 the State retained the right to bowels of the earth and to the "vegetation of the earth" (forests). The felling the ship timber was forbidden under the fear death penalty (in 1782 Ordinance was repealed by Catherine II and the nobles became the absolute owner of bowels of the earth and forests).lands were divided on privat and public.of establishing property rights:

taking a thing no one belonging (extraction of minerals, animal capture, fishing) offspring of animals and fruits of plants,

Awarding of land by the state

the increment (dry river bank),

the finding (if the owner was not found) or a fee of 1 / 3 price from the thing

Contracts (gift, barter, sale, pledge - in case of delay of repayment).


In family law had been significant changes. By The Decree on Primogeniture 1714 was installed age for marriage 20 years for men and 17 for women. After the death of Peter I was set the previous marriage age 15 and 13 years.The Decree of the Synod in 1744 was identified the limiting marriage age - 80 years.


the time of Peters death in 1725, Russia controlled territory six times greater than at the time of Ivan the Terrible. The Russian empire was thirty times larger than that of France. Because of Peters efforts to employ technology, many Westerners and western ideas flowed into Russia for the first time. A new class of educated Russians emerged. Sadly however, the split between the serfs and educated class widened, and the serfs hated Peter more than ever.his predecessors, Peter fostered the idea that his actions were for the good of the country; that the states interest were more important than his own personal interests. He was the first Czar to distinguish between his person as ruler and the state. He required his nobles to take two oaths, one to him as ruler, and the other to the state itself. For the first time in history, the Czar attached explanations to his decrees in an attempt to gain the confidence and support of the populace. Even so, the Czar had the last word, and this became a continuing source of tension between the Czar and the people that finally erupted in 1917. Even so, Peters actions moved Russia into the modern era and closer to the West. His ideas allowed Russia to participate in the age Enlightenment under Catherine the Great.


1.Paul Dukes <>, The making of Russian absolutism, 1613-1801, - Longman, 1990, - 240 p.

2.Martha Moore <>, European History, - Kaplan Publishing, 2009, - 387 p.

3.Perry Anderson <>, Lineages of the absolutist state, - Verso, 1974, - 573 p.

4.John Holland Rose <>, The development of the European nations, 1870-1914, - Putnam's sons, 1916, - 786 p.

CONTENTS Introduction 1.Prerequisites of formation and legalization of absolutism 2.The social structure 2.1Documents; 2.2Classes and ranks

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