Boris Ivanovich Kurakin

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Kurakin, Boris Ivanovich


Born July 20 (30), 1676, in Moscow; died Oct. 17 (28), 1727, in Paris. Russian statesman; one of Peter I’s associates; diplomat.

In 1683, Kurakin was made a part of the most intimate entourage of the juvenile Peter, and from that time on he took part in Peter’s games with his regiment of boy-soldiers and later in more serious military affairs. He participated in the Azov campaigns of 1695–96. In the battle of Poltava of 1709, Kurakin commanded the Semenovskii Regiment. As one of the most educated people of his times, he rapidly advanced in his diplomatic career. During the Congress of Utrecht of 1711–13 and subsequently, Kurakin succeeded in preventing Britain from an open display of hostility toward Russia; he assisted in transforming the Northern Alliance into a powerful coalition in 1714–15. As early as 1710, Kurakin had concluded a treaty between Russia and Hanover with the elector George, the future king of England. He accompanied Peter I to Paris in 1717 and took part in concluding the Amsterdam Treaty of 1717 with France and Prussia. Kurakin was of aid with his advice at the Aland Negotiations with Sweden in 1718–19.

While he was at The Hague from 1711 with the title of ambassador, Kurakin in fact carried out the role of a Russian chancellor abroad. In 1724–27 he was ambassador to Paris. He left behind him a large number of manuscripts; in addition to ambassadorial materials, there were travel notes, an autobiography, and rough drafts for a large-scale historical work, devoted primarily to the period of Peter I.


Arkhiv kniazia F. A. Kurakina, vols. 1–10. Saratov, 1890–1902.
Krylova, T. K. “Poltavskaia pobeda i russkaia diplomatiia.” In the collection Petr Velikii. Moscow-Leningrad, 1947.
Feigina, S. A. Alandskii kongress. Moscow, 1959.
Nikiforov, L. A. Russko-angliiskie otnosheniia pri Petre I. [Moscow] 1950.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.