The Russian Empire

external image ptibmap.gifMap of the Russian Empire's territories in 1800 and 1900.


Utopian Socialists
Eastern Orthodox


Russia underwent a program of industrialization led by Count Sergei Witte, in the late 19th century. Therefore, the Russian empire had the technology of factories, which led to economic advancement, but also led to disillusionment with the corruption and downside to industrialization. Since Russia covered a large land mass, industrialization also led to the need for railroads. Railroads were another technology that was important to the Russian Empire, especially its economy. One of the main railroads in Russia was the Trans-Siberian Railroad, which was an important addition to the industrialized empire.


The culture of the Russian Empire began in 1721, when Peter the Great became our first tsar, or emperor, and presided over the entire empire. The term tsar was taken by all Peter's successors, all the way up to the 1917 Bolshevik revolution. The Russian empire was a vast land mass encompassing many territories, which were eventually all connected by the Transcontinental Railroad. In the early 20th century, our empire was marked by dissent, revolution, and the growth of industrialization.


The major religion that we practiced in the Russian Empire was that of the Russian Orthodox Church, which was led by the tsar. Although the state religion of our empire was Russian Orthodox Christianity, our large and populous empire had many other religions as well, including a large number of Muslims and Roman Catholics.


1905 - Revolution of 1905: In the late 19th century the culture began shifting in the Russian Empire. This is when the tsarist empire underwent many reforms and changes. Tsar Alexander II abolished the institution of serfdom in 1861, and the government created zemstvos, elected district assemblies, in 1864. In the 1890s, a great cultural shift occurred with the growth of industrialization in Russia, mostly brought about by the Sergei Witte system. We soon became discontent with the new industrialized empire, and began movements to bring about social change to the corrupt industrial society. Our protests brought even greater repression by the government; we set out to terrorize and revolutionize the Russian Empire in order to acheieve social change. After the Russo-Japanese War, we were able to express our discontent during the Revolution of 1905 in Russia.

1917 - Revolution of 1917: In this revolution, we overthrew the tsarist authority that had been in power for nearly two centuries. Also called the Bolshevik Revolution, we took over after the Russian Empire had been weakened by the Great War that had occurred recently before. Tsar Nicholas II abdicated his throne, and then the revolution spread throughout Russia. Lenin came to power at this time, after bringing himself into the tense Russian political situation and promoting reforms for the working class.

1897 - Sergei Witte's Program for Industrialization: In the late 19th century, the Russian statesman Sergei Witte began to eagerly encourage the Russian Empire to industrialize. We saw that other societies were becoming more economically successful and powerful through industrialization, so we undertook the entensive program of building factories throughout Russia, and connecting these factories by building extensive railroad systems such as the Trans-Siberian Railroad, allowing us to transport goods, raw materials, and workers to far reaches of the industrialized empire. Eventually, dissent followed the program of industrialization, I guess because we were becoming corrupt and treating workers badly while paying low wages.

The Wall

serfs: I am so glad Alexander freed us. Although thank you Russia for so many years of servitude. I really appreciate being freed and given no money to buy land or food for my family.
France (Napoleonic): You have really stupid winters, Russia. Thanks a lot for pretty much initiating the downfall of our empire in 1812, lame-o. Real nice of you. Just when we thought we had you by capturing Moscow, you went and burned your own stupid city so that we wouldn't have anything to help us comfortably live in Moscow. (You were obviously scheming with Britain to kick our butts, so you totally deserved to have your city captured.) We wanted to leave after that destruction, but your winter went and wiped out a ridiculously large fraction of our army. You need to get a better climate. It was so embarassing! And then, on top of that, you teamed up with Britian, Austria, and Prussia to exile Napoleon! Not cool.At all.


Bentley, Jerry H., and Ziegler Herbert F.. Traditions and Encounters: A Global Perspective on the Past. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 2006.
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