The Epoch of Palace Revolutions and reforms of the Government apparatus of Russian empire in the reign of Catherine I, Peter II, Anna Ioannovna, Elizabeth Petrovna, Peter III.
After the death of Peter I Russia stepped into the time of Palace Revolutions. Enormous overstrain of the country during 25 years of wars and reforms, connected with it the necessity of correction of the government course, the conditions of military-police state, created by Peter - all these caused the original Russian 'tradition' of the Palace Revolutions.
In the conditions, when the public life was totally controlled by the Government, legal politics didn't exist at all, Palace Revolutions became the only way of solving the contradictions between the main components of absolutism - autocratic power, the governing people and the dominating estate. The tension in this triangle became crucial, which was caused by the extremely disadvantageous for the nobles correlation between system of privileges and the pressure of the government, and increasing autocratic power, which led, to a certain extent, to breaking up with its own social base. To add to this, there was no unity inside the ruling circle.
On the eve of Peter's death, on January 25-26, 1725, the dissent happened to be among the higher officials of the country. One group (the president of Judicial Collegium F.M. Apraksin, the president of Commerce Collegium D.M. Golitsin, the president of Military Collegium, N.I. Repnin, Senator V.L. Dolgoruky, the president of Stats-Kontor Collegium I.A. Musin and Chancellor G.I. Golovkin) wanted the Peter's I grandson - Tsarevich Peter Alekseyevich - to be enthroned, and the system of regency to be established, so that Peter's wife Catherine Alekseyevna together with Senate could rule.
The other group (his Grace Prince A.D. Menshikov, prosecutor-general of Senate P.I. Yaguzhinsky, general I.I. Buturlin, diplomat and the Head of Secret Office P.A. Tolstoy, vice-president of Synod F. Prokopovich and others) wanted to see Catherine on the throne as the sovereign. The discussion went far, but skilled maneuvering and - the most important - support of Guards'( Preobrazhensky and Semenovsky) regiments provided for enthroning Catherine Alekseyevna on January 28, 1725, after Peter's the Great death.