Why was St Petersburg the capital of Russia between 1712 to 1918?

Why was St Petersburg the capital of Russia between 1712 to 1918 (with the exception of a few years under Peter II) ? Why did Moscow become the capital in 1918?


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8 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    On 1 May, 1703 (Russian calendar), during the Great Northern War, Peter the Great captured the Swedish fortress of Nyenskans on the Neva river in Ingria. A few weeks later, on 27 May, 1703 (May 16, Old Style), lower on the river, on Zayachy (Hare) Island, three miles (5 km) inland from the gulf, he laid down the Peter and Paul Fortress, which became the first brick and stone building of the new city. He named the city after his patron saint, Saint Peter, the apostle. The original name was meant to sound like Dutch due to Peter's obsession with the Dutch culture. The city was built by conscripted serfs from all over Russia and also by Swedish prisoners of war under the supervision of Alexander Menshikov and later became the centre of Saint Petersburg Governorate. Peter moved the capital from Moscow to Saint Petersburg in 1712, before the Treaty of Nystad of 1721 ended the war.

    The city's proximity to the border and anti-Soviet armies forced the Bolsheviks under Lenin to transfer the capital to Moscow on March 12, 1918. In 1919 during the ensuing Russian Civil War Nikolay Yudenich advancing from Estonia was about to capture the city from the Bolsheviks, but Leon Trotsky ultimately managed to mobilise the population and make him retreat. Many people fled the city in 1917-1920 or were repressed in the Red Terror, so its population decreased dramatically. On January 24, 1924, three days after Lenin's death, Petrograd was renamed Leningrad. For decades Leningrad was glorified by the Soviet propaganda as "the cradle of the revolution" and "the city of three revolutions", many spots related to Lenin and the revolutions, such as the cruiser Aurora, were carefully preserved. Many streets and other toponyms were renamed accordingly.

  • 5 years ago

    This Site Might Help You.


    Why was St Petersburg the capital of Russia between 1712 to 1918?

    Why was St Petersburg the capital of Russia between 1712 to 1918 (with the exception of a few years under Peter II) ? Why did Moscow become the capital in 1918?

    Source(s): st petersburg capital russia 1712 1918: https://shortly.im/HK2ws
  • 1 decade ago

    Peter the First moved the capital from Moscow to St Petersburg because the last one was a port city so his decision was strategic to make the shortest sea way from the Russian Empire to Europe. Yet St Petersburg had a quarter layout like in most European capitals whereas Moscow had a ring-radial layout. It's known that Peter the First wanted to build a city which was similar with the European cities.

    In 19818 the capital was moved to Moscow because of the possible German military raid on Petrograd (St Petersburg). There was a strong political opposition to the Bolshevik government in Petrograd as well. It could defeat the Bolshevik power.

    Source(s): http://www.encspb.ru/en/article.php?kod=2804020144 http://www.answers.com/topic/moscow (see Russian History Encyclopedia) My own knowledge of the Russian history
  • Aqwa
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    The Czar Peter the Great built St Petersburg as a new capital, mainly because it has access to the sea (through Baltic sea). The city was even referred to as "The window to Europe". It was strategically important to build a major Northern port city that Russia did not have before. The capital was moved back to Moscow after the Communist Revolution, because communists decided Moscow was better fit for the role of a new government sit.

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  • 4 years ago

    The Capital Of Russia

  • 1 decade ago

    Because of the history. But really, Peter I didn't like Moscow at all. He wanted "his city". So, he founded Sankt-Piterburh (in hollander manner). Moscow wasn't the european city, it was a big suburb. He needed the city of european style - so he did a "window" to Europe. And the next reason, he needed strategy city near to Baltic sea.

    The next question is more difficult. Moscow became capital in 1918 because of revolutions. And Saint-Petersburg (Petrograd) was the capital of the best minds in Russia, and new government decided to change capital. And it was a bad sign - to start new history in the city where new government killed czar's family. Petrograd was very dangerous for new government.

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    In the event that you want to visit areas like Kremlin, Red Square and St Basil's Cathedral than you will have to visit Moscow, the capital of the Russian Federation and one of the country's hottest places for international readers and you may be one if you appear with hotelbye . In Moscow you will also see the planet popular cinema, the Bolshoi Theatre, the gem in the crown of Moscow's wealthy ethnic life. Moscow has lot to offer and without a doubt you will like a holyday here.

  • 1 decade ago

    Besides the reasons mentioned by other contributors here Peter I HATED Moscow. It apparently had to do with some Freudian complexes from his childhood when he witnessed violent death of his maternal uncle in the hands of "streltsy" (semi-regular troops which performed police and security duties in Moscow of that time). Moscow "streltsy" supporting Peter's half-sister Sophia in the succession struggle initiated a few revolts. On one occasion 16 year old Peter I fled the Kremlin on a horseback in his underwear. Eventually he disbanded the troops and executed (beheaded) hundreds of them. Peter never felt safe in Moscow afterward haunted by his memories.

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