• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Was the defeat in the war the real cause of the Russian Revolution

Extracts from this document...


History Essay Was the defeat in the war the real Cause of the Russian Revolution? I think that there would have still have been a revolution without the war, it would have just taken a lot longer. The war was like a catalyst for the revolution. This is because Lenin believed that there would be a revolution but he wrote that "We will not see a revolution in our lifetime". There were major flaws in Russia before this. Tsar Nicholas II was not a natural born leader, he had, had great tsar's before him in the form of his father and grandfather. He was unprepared for the throne because of the sudden death of Alexander III. He was 'charming but weak'. Nicholas was a firm believer in the autocracy and so were the people that he appointed, like Pobedonostev who in 1984 was chief advisor to Nicholas. This meant that he didn't like to give any of his rule away and so when he made the October Manifest and Peasant Manifest in 1905 which stated that there would be franchise to all classes, fundamental civil liberties and the all the future laws would require the approval of the State Duma, less than a year later, after this 'revolution' was over he took it all back with the fundamental laws and Article 87 which allowed the tsar to rule by decree in emergencies. The tsar did not learn any lessons from 1905. ...read more.


With the church turning against the tsar because of his leniency with Rasputin the pillars of tsarism which kept the autocracy was already starting to crumble. Rasputin is also not to be blamed entirely for the revolution as he was only 'a symptom o the downfall to the autocracy, not a cause'. He was opposed to war and tried to urge the tsar to reconsider his decision about joining the war. Also he was assassinated in December 1916 by Prince F.F. Yusupov and V.M. Puriskevitch, his death was not met with sadness, infact it had the opposite effect. Some people blame his assassins for the revolution as no-one had Rasputin to fear anymore just like the peasants didn't have to fear Stolypin. The population had been increasing in the cities which made conditions very cramped and poor. This made even more reasons to strike and the numbers were greater, so when there was a revolution in Petrograd there were more people to join the opposition and they were in a more condensed space. There were many strikes because of poor working condition. Factory inspectors recorded the number of strikes that they found so not even all the strikes were counted in the final figures as there were not many inspectors and that is why the working conditions were poor. The growth of the population in St Petersburg went from 1 905 600 in 1910 to 2 217 500 in 1914. ...read more.


There was a big rise in armaments production but this was at the expense of other everyday goods as the factories were being used for this new production (80% of the labour force was engaged in war production by 1916) and this made the people unhappy with the situation because of the price increase. Industrialists were doing Ok as the government was paying to use their factories but they wanted more economic freedom. Most were forced into accepting to let the government make their supplies in their factories as non-war industries often went out of business, so there was incentive there for them to join in the revolution but not as much as the peasants and workers as they were still being paid. Because of the war the Duma was dissolved in 1915 which meant that the people would have no say in what was going the happen in the war. Becaus Nicholas took over the army he was solely to blame for the massive defeats. While he was on the front his wife was under the influence of Rasputin, to which nobody liked. The war alienated the government from its supporters. The revolutionary in 1917 was spontaneous as the leaders of the opposition were still in Switzerland. The demonstrators weren't expecting the army to join forces with them despite the huge losses as they had always been loyal to the tsar and demonstrators had been shot just the day before. The people saw their chance and took it because there was more radicalisation. In the end they got their revolution. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Russia, USSR 1905-1941 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Russia, USSR 1905-1941 essays

  1. The fall of Tsarism in Russia.

    In conclusion, the comparison of these two sources shows the unfavorable impact that the war had on the Russian army. This therefore proves evidence for Kokovstov's idea, "Without war Tsarist Russia would have survived and prospered. In this section I am going to study Source G and Source H.

  2. 1917 Russian Revolution Perspective

    You all wanted to believe that they could make your life better now! Lies! Lies I tell you! And finally, before that filth took over my government I tried to stop it once and for all by arresting the Military Revolutionary Committee, closing down Bolshevik papers, and cutting off the phones to their base at the Smolny Institute.

  1. Examine the importance of Russian weaknesses in WW1 in explaining the start of Revolution ...

    because 80% of Russia's population at the time were peasants, and in 1881 only 928,000 people were living in St Petersburg. By 1914 the population of St Petersburg had increased to 2,217,000 this caused a lot of problems. It caused social unrest, their were on trade union or legal representation and bad living conditions because the city was so crowded.

  2. Source based questions on the Russian revolutions.

    the possibilities are endless. All the other sources however claim that they were killed in Ipatiev house. Source J also partially could help source A & B, in that they claim that only Tsar, Dr Botkin (the family doctor), two servants and the Empress's maid were shot in Ipatiev house.

  1. Stereotypes - The Russian Character.

    To foreign travellers who have found Russians in the street to be brusque and impersonal, who remember Soviet officials to be cold and rigid and Soviet waiters exasperating in their imperious and surly indifference, this side of the Russian character often comes as a surprise.

  2. 'The First World War was the most important cause of the Russian Revolution.' How ...

    appointed himself the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, all between 1914 and 1916. He ignored the demands of the Duma for the appointment of talented men from among its own ranks. The war dragged on and news of defeats were more common than those of victories, causing the masses to

  1. The Examination of One of Russia's Greatest Leaders - Peter the Great

    Natalia Naryshkin's death in 1694 marked the true beginning of Peter's reign. In 1696 Ivan V died, and Peter formally became the sole occupant of the Muscovite throne. Peter was very tall, extremely powerful, incredibly energetic, and an intellectually gifted child4.

  2. Analyse how far WW1 caused the Russian Revolution.

    Nicholas was already very incapable of leading, and so with the devastation that rocked the whole of Russia, the people believed that it was finally time to make the Tsar leave. During the period before the war, the Tsar was able to find ways to gain support, and the support

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work