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Peter the Great

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Peter the Great

If this were a list about strange monarchs, Peter the Great would top the list. Peter the Great was the Czar of Russia in the 18th century. Seeing how backwards Russia was, he decided to tour Western Europe in order to find ways to modernize his country.Peter took the guise of an average merchant to avoid being discovered and came back to Russia with many ways to improve the empire. He set up new schools, created the mighty port of St. Petersburg, and ordered all Russian men to shave their beards or pay a tax. Yes, you read that right. Russians grow such poor beards that they had to pay to keep them.He also had a museum of oddities ranging from deformed animal fetuses to animal parts to dispel superstition in his country. Now thats scientific curiosity.


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