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Elizabeth Empressof Russia

Elizabeth, Empress of Russia (1710-1762), was the daughter of Peter the Great and Catherine. In 1741 she succeeded to the throne owing to a conspiracy of the old party, which was opposed to the innovations which had been introduced by Peter the Great. Elizabeth was beautiful and licentious, and her government, which was carried on by a succession of favourites, was tyrannical and capricious, and banishment to Siberia was freely used. She patronised literature, and corresponded with Voltaire, to whom she supplied material for his life of Peter. She founded the University of Moscow, and the Academy of Fine Arts at St. Petersburg. Besides her lovers she had a husband of low rank. She had a war with Sweden, which ended with the Peace of Abo, she aided Maria Theresa in the War of Succession, and she was engaged in the Seven Years' war at the time of her death.