Boris Morozov


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Morozov, Boris Ivanovich

 

Born in 1590; died in 1661. Statesman who headed the Russian government during the mid-17th century; boyar.

Morozov was the diad’ka (tutor) of Tsar Aleksei Mikhailovich. He directed prikazy (central offices) dealing with finance, the streltsy (semiprofessional musketeers), apothecaries, and customs revenue. In the hope of increasing treasury income, Morozov reduced the pay of servicemen and introduced a high indirect tax on salt. These measures were among the causes of the Moscow rebellion of 1648. The rebels demanded that Morozov be handed over to them, but the tsar first hid him in the palace and then sent him into feigned exile in a monastery; within four months he had returned to Moscow.

Morozov aided in the preparation of the ulozhenie (code) of 1649 under Tsar Aleksei Mikhailovich; until the end of the 1650’s he continued as the unacknowledged head of government. He owned 55,000 peasants, ironworks, brickyards, potash plants, flour mills, and wineries. Morozov’s holdings provide an example of the combination of feudal landowning with energetic commercial and industrial activity.

REFERENCES

Akty khoziaistva boiarina B. I. Morozova, vols. 1–2. Moscow-Leningrad, 1940–45.
Petrikeev, D. I. Krupnoe krepostnoe khoziaistvo XVII v.: Po materialam votchiny boiarina B. L Morozova. Leningrad, 1967.

A. L. GOL’DBERG