The Four Dumas

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The Four Dumas

  • The October Manifesto promised reform, this included having a 'State Duma' (established in February 1906)
  • Method of Selection and Role of Dumas:

Over 500 delegates, elected every 5 years by men over 25 using indirect suffrage. Their role was to debate law and improve it. However 4 days before the first State Duma met, Nicholas issued the 'Fundamental Laws'. These laws cleverly upheld the October Promises, but 'confirmed the Tsar's supreme autocractic power'

The First Duma (May - June 1906) 'Duma of National Hopes'

  • It was dominated by Kadets and radicals with large peasant representation.
  • It demanded Radical constitional change. 
  • It passed a vote of 'no confidence' in the government. 
  • It was dissovled but reassembled in Finland where kadets issued the 106 'Vyborg Appeal' for a tax boycott. Leaders were arrested and disenfranchised. (Sent into political exile)
  • This prompted Nicholas II to promote Stolypin to PM to manage 'The Duma Experiment'.

Second Duma (February - June 1907) 'Duma of National Anger'

  • Stolypin engineered elections to increase the number of Octobrists. 
  • But the Bolsheviks and the Social Revolutionaries


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