The Finances of the Russian Empire in the Period of the Patriotic War of 1812 and of the Foreign Campaigns of the Russian Army

  • Liudmila P. Marnei
Chapter
Part of the War, Culture and Society, 1750–1850 book series

Abstract

Despite nearly two centuries of research on the era of the Napoleonic Wars, the task of discovering and publishing previously unknown sources on the history of the so-called Patriotic War of 1812 and the foreign campaigns of the Russian army remains an important one, and a number of other features require further research. One of these is the history of Russian finances in the first quarter of the nineteenth century.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    The Tilsit peace agreements dealt a serious blow to the Russian economy. The foreign trade turnover contracted from 120 million roubles in 1806 to 83 million roubles in 1808, and trade with the Empire’s main trading partner, Britain, was lost. The losses were not compensated by illegal trade, which was not policed very strictly, or by the attempts to increase demand for Russian goods in France. The rouble fell. Most historians consider the blockade to have had an extremely negative effect on the economic, financial, industrial and commercial development of Russia. One positive effect of the continental blockade, in the opinion of Gur’ev, was an increase in 1808 and 1809 in deposits made in credit institutions. ‘Foreign capitalists’, he wrote, ‘in the context of a nearly universal reduction in commerce, turned with their capital to our Loan Bank, attracted in particular by the rate of return on interest’: St Petersburg, Rossiiskii gosudarstvennyi istoricheskii arkhiv (hereafter RGIA), f. 560, op. 11, d. 9, l. 40. The same could not have been said of Russian subjects, who demanded their capital from the bank and the brokers: Zhurnal Komiteta ministrov. Tsartvovanie Aleksandra I, 2 vols (St Petersburg, 1891), 2, 493–7. See also: Mikhail F. Zlotnikov, Kontinental’naia blokada i Rossiia (Moscow-Leningrad, 1966), 227–46;Google Scholar
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