Peter the Great or Czar Peter I was born in 1672, son of
Alexis I and Natalia Naryshkin. After a violent childhood, Pater
enheirited the throne in April 1682. Because Peter was only nine
years old at the time, he became czar while his mother became regent.
In May, Peter's half-sister, Sofia, seized power for her sickly brother,
Ivan. Ivan then became senior czar and Peter was junior czar.
Peter was married to Eudoxia Lopukhina in 1689. After the death of
Natalia Naryshkin in 1694, Peter was viewed as the ruler of Russia and
in 1696, when Ivan V died, it was official. He took full power and
sought to modernize Russia. Also in 1696, the Ottoman Empire surrenered
to Peter after a one-year war.
Peter received hardly any formal education, however he learned about many
things in relaxed, informal environment. Peter established the Grand
Embassy, a group of 250 men that visited European countries and sometimes
traveled with them. In 1698, after the streltsy (who wanted Peter's
half-sister, Sofia, to take the throne) rebelled, Peter executed more then
1,000 of them. Peter encouraged Western ideas and styles and even
adopted the western calendar based on the birth of Jesus. in 1703,
after Peter had defeated Sweden, he founded St. Petersburg on the Gulf
of Finland. Peter literally created the Russian navy and changed
the Russian Orthodox Church greatly. He also gave women more rights,
expanded the Russian Empire, and built a new capital, St. Petersburg.
Peter the Great died in 1725 after he tried to save dying soldiers.