History of Russia
PETER THE GREAT THE REVOLUTIONARY CZAR OF RUSSIA
Peter the First of Russia (more commonly known as Peter the Great) was born the son of Alexis Michailovich Romanov and Natalia Cyrilovna Narishkina on June 9, 1672 in Moscow, Russia. Alexis was overjoyed, and a great gingerbread cake with the double eagle was made, cannons were fired, and bells rang all over the land. But at his birth, it was not known that he would be the future czar of Russia. It was not until later on, when the czar Alexis died in 1676 at the age of 47, leaving his son Feodor (son of his first wife, Maria Miloslavsky) the heir to the throne . Feodor was slightly retarded, and therefore very fragile. Bitter rivalries went up for 6 years between the widow and ex-wife of Alexis, until Feodor died of natural causes in 1682. It was then that a truce was made that Peter and his half-brother Ivan (also son of Maria), who was also slightly retarded, would be joint czars. He spent most of his young childhood life in the Kremlin, which he grew to hate, due to the dusky rooms, the labyrinthine corridors, and the bloody memories of terror and danger. When Peter was 10 years old, the palace guards revolted, and brutally murdered the supporters of his mother. Peter witnessed the brutal murders of Artemon Mateev, and Natalia¹s brother on the lawn of the Kremlin. It was then that Peter, his two small sisters, and his mother withdrew to the countryhouse of Czar Alexis in the village of Preobrazhenskoe outside Moscow. They returned to the Kremlin infrequently, where Peter and Ivan sat on their double throne, flanked by 12 giant guards with battle-axes. Warily Peter listened as his clever and relentlessly ambitious older half-sister Sophia (also daughter of Maria), acting as regent, whispered instructions to him through the curtain.
In the country, Peter was allowed to roam the fields and streets with the peasant boys, who were his close friends, playing...