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Muraviev, Michael Nikolaievich, Count

MURAVIEV, MICHAEL NIKOLAIEVICH, COUNT (1845-19(50), Russian statesman, was born on the 19th of April 1845. He was the son of General Count Nicholas Muraviev (governor of Grodno), and grandson of the Count Michael Muraviev, who became notorious for his drastic measures in stamping out the Polish insurrection of 1863 in the Lithuanian provinces. He was educated at a secondary school at Poltava, and was for a short time at Heidelberg University. In 1864 he entered the chancellery of the minister for foreign affairs at St Petersburg, and was soon afterwards attached to the Russian legation at Stuttgart, where he attracted the notice of Queen Olga of Wiirttemberg. He was transferred to Berlin, then to Stockholm, and back again to Berlin. In 1877 he was second secretary at the Hague. During the Russo-Turkish War of 1878 he was a delegate of the Red Cross Society in charge of an ambulance train provided i by Queen Olga of Wiirttemberg. After the war he was successively first secretary at Paris, chancellor of the embassy at Berlin, and then minister at Copenhagen. In Denmark he was brought much into contact with the imperial family, and on the death of Prince Lobanov in 1897 he was appointed by the Tsar Nicholas II. to be his minister of foreign affairs. The next three and a half years were a critical time for European diplomacy. The Chinese and Cretan questions were disturbing factors. As regards Crete, Count Muraviev's policy was vacillating; in China his hands were forced by Germany's action at Kiaochow. But he acted with singular Itgerete with regard at all events to his assurances to Great Britain respecting the leases of Port Arthur and Talienwan from China; he told the British ambassador that these would be " open ports," and afterwards essentially modified this pledge. When the Tsar Nicholas inaugurated the Peace Conference at the Hague, Count Muraviev extricated his country from a situation of some embarrassment; but when, subsequently, Russian ' agents in Manchuria and at Peking connived at the agitation which culminated in the Boxer rising of 1900, the relations of the responsible foreign minister with the tsar became strained. Muraviev died suddenly on the 21st of June 1900, of apoplexy, brought on, it was said, by a stormy interview with the tsar.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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