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18 Pages

FROM PETER THE GREAT TO LENIN

CHAPTER I FROM PETER THE GREAT TO PUGACHEV

THE Russian Labour Movement is two hundred years old. The first signs of industrial development in Russia appeared in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries; but production was sporadic and primitive in character, and goods were manufactured not so much for the open market as for the use of the Crown; and internal and foreign trade alike bore a handicraft character. The early part of the eighteenth century marks the beginning of industry on Western lines, when Peter the Great decided to copy European methods of production in Russia. It was at this time also that the first shoots of free labour began to push their way through the bondage by which the social and economic life of Russia was overlaid.