Events Leading Up to the Russian Revolution

  • The Great Northern War

    The Great Northern War was fought between Sweden and Russia, Denmark/Norway, and Saxony/Poland for control of the Baltic. Sweden ended up losing most of its control over the Baltic. (Lasted from 1700 to 1721)
  • The Decembrist Revolt

    A small group of nobles and army officers tried to overthrow the czar’s government, because they hoped to set up a constitutional monarchy. Czar Nicholas I quickly crushed the uprising.
  • Czar Alexander II Emancipates the Serfs

    When Czar Alexander II emancipated the serfs, they gained a few political rights and were allowed to keep their homes and tools, but they were not given land. They instead had to buy it at high prices, and many peasants continued to live in terrible poverty, due to debt and high taxes. (No exact date)
  • The Assassination of Alexander II

    Czar Alexander II was killed in the streets of St. Petersburg by a bomb thrown by someone in the "People's Will" group. People's Will had a goal of overthrowing Russia's czarist autocracy.
  • The Russo-Japenese War

    Conflict with Japan over Korea and Manchuria led to this war. It resulted in a stunning defeat for Russia and only increased economic hardships at home. (Ended September 5, 1905)
  • Bloody Sunday

    A young priest named Father Georgi Gapon planned a peaceful march of factory workers to the czar’s palace in order to present a petition to Nicholas II to ask for better working conditions and political freedoms. Thousands joined Father Gapon, but soldiers appeared and shot into the crowd. Over 100 people were killed and hundreds more were severely injured.
  • The Revolution of 1905

    H. The Revolution of 1905 – After Bloody Sunday, riots and strikes swept the cities, and peasants looted and burned the homes of landowners. Czar Nicholas II agreed to set up an elected assembly called Duma to try and end the violence. However, inequality and repression remained and there was still discontent. (Started after Bloody Sunday and lasted throughout much of 1905)
  • World War I (Russian Involvement)

    The Russians were allied with Britain and France and were fighting Germany and Austria-Hungary. While they expected a quick victory, the war dragged on. Soldiers had a shortage of supplies, and citizens had a shortage of food and other goods. Russians blamed the czar and his generals for the disastrous defeats. (Ended November 11, 1918)
  • The March Revolution

    Riots and strikes erupted in Petrograd because angry crowds were protesting World War I and the shortage of food. When the government sent troops to restore order, however, many soldiers refused to fire, and hundreds of the soldiers even joined the protesters. (Lasted until March 15, when the czar abdicated the throne)
  • Czar Nicholas II Abdicates the Russian Throne

    Czar Nicholas II gave up the throne after the March Revolution caused demonstrators to overthrow czarist officials. He was the last czar of Russia.