Октября Манифестъ


The October Manifesto was created out of the hope for changed, signed out of fear, and not fully used until the “Fundamental Laws” was written almost 6 months later.

The year of 1905 proved to hold the biggest trouble for the Russian Tsar. To kick off the year with Bloody Sunday, then continue it by the losses in the Russo-Japanese War, then massive strikes all over Russia, with the closing of factories, schools, and theaters. The autocracy needed to fix the unrest which was prevalent throughout his country. He turned to Sergei Witte for an answer. Military action or reform?


Sergei Witte was the “architect of the manifesto,” who had felt the “Russia had out grown its existing order and is striking towards a legal order based on civil liberty.” The October Manifesto was a means to give the people hope without taking too much power away from the autocracy. The Manifesto, which was signed on October 17, 1905, promised the people civil liberties, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, and that no laws would be implemented without the agreement of the Duma. Though it does not say anywhere in the Manifesto that the Duma can create new laws or act like a normally functioning legislative body like we know it in the West.

The Manifesto was well received at first, but the broadness of the Manifesto sparked more conflict. The workers and peasantry felt that they were not getting the proper change. They wanted immediate “practical social and economic change.” The Manifesto was a short term fix of the chaos that was erupting all over Russia. Nicolas II put a cork in the bottle of the Revolution without realizing that the bottle was going to shatter under the pressure. But the Tsar’s “failed implementation of the Manifesto” was the driving force in the Revolution of 1917.

Work Cited:

“The October Manifesto”. HistoryLearningSite.co.uk. 2005. Web. 7 Sept 2014. <http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/october_manifesto.htm>.

“The Explosive October Manifesto.” Proquest. Proquest, Sept.-Oct. 2010. Web. 7 Sept. 2014. <http://search.proquest.com/docview/749234680?pq-origsite=summon>.

“The October Manifesto of 1905.” The October Manifesto of 1905. Durham, n.d. Web. 07 Sept. 2014. <http://community.dur.ac.uk/a.k.harrington/octmanif.html>.

Kropotkin, G. M. “The Ruling Bureaucracy and the “New Order” of Russian Statehood After the Manifesto of 17 October 1905.” Get VText Search Results. Russians Studies in History, 2008. Web. 07 Sept. 2014. <http://su8bj7jh4j.search.serialssolutions.com/?ctx_ver=Z39.88-2004&ctx_enc=info%3Aofi%2Fenc%3AUTF-8&rfr_id=info:sid/summon.serialssolutions.com&rft_val_fmt=info:ofi/fmt:kev:mtx:journal&rft.genre=article&rft.atitle=The+Ruling+Bureaucracy+and+the+%22New+Order%22+of+Russian+Statehood+After+the+Manifesto+of+17+October+1905&rft.jtitle=Russian+Studies+in+History&rft.au=Kropotkin%2C+G.+M&rft.date=2008-04-01&rft.issn=1061-1983&rft.eissn=1558-0881&rft.volume=46&rft.issue=4&rft.spage=6&rft.epage=33&rft_id=info:doi/10.2753%2FRSH1061-1983460401&rft.externalDBID=n%2Fa&rft.externalDocID=10_2753_RSH1061_1983460401&paramdict=en-US>.

“Tsar Nicolas and the October Manifesto.” Cgscrussianrevolution2011. N.p., n.d. Web. 7 Sept. 2014. <http://cgscrussianrevolution2011.wikispaces.com/Tsar+Nicolas+and+the+October+Manifesto>.

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6 thoughts on “Октября Манифестъ

  1. I researched Bloody Sunday and found that the petition the marchers brought to the Tsar included a request for free elections, shorter hours, and higher wages. Instead of responding to this petition, Tsar Nicholas II had the people marching to the Winter Palace murdered. It is unfortunate that it took uprisings across the empire to enact some sort of social change that ended up being similar to what those that were killed on Bloody Sunday were hoping for. Those hundred or so lives could have been saved if the Tsar had recognized and accepted these signs of revolt earlier on.

    • I agree. But what I found in my research (from the resources above) was that as the rioting and striking continued throughout the year that he turned to Sergei Witte for decision on what to do. Obviously military action was not working, as was seem on Bloody Sunday, and a different perspective was needed. Witte said that the military couldn’t be trusted and reform was the only option to contain the masses. The original manifesto that Witte wrote gave more rights to the people and limited the autocracy’s power more, but the Tsar’s advisors made Witte rewrite the Manifesto so that he could maintain more power.

  2. I liked your post! I researched the Peasant Union, which actually misinterpreted the October Manifesto, so it was interesting to read more background information on this topic. The peasants took it to mean that the gentry land was theirs for the taking since now they had civil liberties, so it started lots of looting and uprisings, as you pointed out. I also appreciated the images you included–it helped to bring the reader into the action in the beginning. The only thing I would suggest is making your post longer! It’s well-written, but maybe more information would make it even better.

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