Abstract and Keywords
Arguing that the modernity, rationality and secularity of Peter the Great’s project have been generally over-emphasized, this chapter contends that the Tsar’s drive to transform his vast realm into a wealthy, powerful and well-regulated Empire derived less from his fondness for things foreign or from the constant demands of warfare than from his sense of divine election for his imperial vocation and his unswerving belief—nurtured by his intimates, tested by the ups-and-downs of political and military fortune, and represented by ceremonies and spectacles, both sacred and profane—that he was predestined for greatness.
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