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Nikita Ivanovich Panin was born in 1718. He was the son of Ivan Panin, who during his life rose to the rank of lieutenant general.
Nikita Panin himself began military service in the Horse Guards regiment. presented the scepter to Empress Elizaveta Petrovna.
In 1748 Panin was sent to Sweden, where he spent the next twelve years. In 1760, when Panin returned to St. Petersburg, he was entrusted with the education of Pavel Petrovich, Nikita Ivanovich received the rank of Chief Hofmeister. This was the son of the heir, the future autocrat Paul I.
In 1763 Panin was appointed head of the foreign policy department. In 1764 Nikita Ivanovich was appointed head of the campaign for business in Poland. The goal of this campaign was to elect to the Polish throne a candidate beneficial to the Russian Empire - Stanislav Ponyatovsky became him.
Until 1774 Nikita Ivanovich Panin was the tutor of the Grand Duke Paul. Nikita Ivanovich Panin was dismissed in 1781 (until that time it was Panin who was the ruler of all Russian foreign policy).
In retirement, he drew attention to the internal problems of the Russian Empire. In 1782, he wrote an essay that was essentially an introduction to the constitution. In 1783 Nikita Ivanovich Panin died.
When Empress Elizabeth Petrovna spotted Nikita Ivanovich Panin, she sent him to Denmark, and then to Sweden. Her favorite I.I. Shuvalov. He realized that there was a rival in front of him. It was possible to get rid of him in a tried and tested way - to give an order, necessarily connected with excommunication from the capital. So Panin was forced to go as ambassador to Denmark and Sweden.
Panin had a good time in Sweden. Here he learned how the struggle between political parties takes place. In this country, Nikita Panin comprehended the depths of the diplomat's art. Sweden helped him understand some of the ideas of the Enlightenment. In particular, he realized what the power of the law means. After all, absolutely the entire population of the country (including the autocrat) must unquestioningly follow it. The state should in every way help the development of trade, both internal and external, as well as the development of industry and agriculture. He understood that a country with such rich natural resources should rely on this wealth in its development.
Panin was interested in the fate of the serfs. In this case, he believed that it would be too early to abolish serfdom. But the state, in his opinion, is obliged to protect the peasants from the tyranny of the landlords. The relationship between them must be fully regulated, in particular, the amount of duties that the peasant is obliged to bear in favor of his master is clearly established.
In 1760, Panin became one of the country's important dignitaries. He was summoned by Elizaveta Petrovna with the aim of educating Pal Petrovich (the future tsar). Nikita Ivanovich Panin took over as Chief Hofmeister. This position gave Panin many rights: he could maintain a fairly close relationship with the Grand Duke and Princess, even had access to the Empress's apartments. Panin's duties included the upbringing of faith, good nature, meekness, justice, etc. in Catherine's son, as well as the prevention of all sorts of vices (cowardice, flattery, etc.). The history of Russia occupied the most important place among the sciences taught to Pavel.
N.I. Panin did not differ in zeal for the education of the heir. The point was not only laziness, but rather that in 1763 Panin was appointed head of the foreign policy department. In addition, the topics that Panin started at the dinner table were rarely educational. Basically, they dealt with the most pressing secular problems that the pupil, due to his age, could not perceive properly. There were cases when the conversation had a direction contrary to moral foundations. Under his pupil Panin could talk about executions, many of which seemed funny to him. Sometimes Pavel attended performances in the theater, which were clearly not intended for children. Be that as it may, Panin perfectly selected teachers who know their business for the pupil. Among them, officer Poroshin, who had a broad outlook, was distinguished.
Panin took part in the palace coup on June 28, 1762. Panin was a man who did not like to take risks, so it was very difficult to involve him in participation in the palace coup. And yet E. Dashkova decided to directly ask Panin what he thinks about the deposition of Peter III from the throne. To this Panin replied that he was aware of the harmful influence the reign of Peter III could have on the development of the country, but he was not a supporter of violent measures. However, Panin was in favor of the accession to the throne of the legitimate heir - Paul. After the accomplishment of the coup and the joy that hovered in society after the overthrow of Peter III, Catherine II became empress. Speech about the regency of Ekaterina Alekseevna over her minor son no longer went.
Catherine II treated Panin confidentially. Although the goal of the palace coup, as Panin believed, was the accession of the legitimate heir of Paul I, no alienation arose between him and Catherine II. And N.I. himself Panin no longer insisted on the enthronement of Paul.
Panin is the head of the foreign policy department. In 1763, Nikita Ivanovich Panin received a special rescript from the empress, which spoke of his temporary appointment as head of the Foreign Collegium of Affairs. However, Panin held this position for about twenty years. The fact is that for the first two years he replaced Chancellor Vorontsov, who went on vacation for this period. But this very vacation for Vorontsov was a good pretext for resignation. Based on this, after the end of the Chancellor's vacation, Panin became a full-fledged head of this foreign policy department.
Panin was in charge of the Khitrovo case investigation. It was associated with the Empress's desire to marry G. Orlov. In connection with this case, no danger was identified for Catherine the Great. The punishment for the participants in the "conspiracy" was very light. True, this is also explained by the fact that Panin himself was not satisfied with the possible marriage of the empress with his favorite.
Panin directed the investigation into Mirovich's cases. This case was much more important than the previous one. Mirovich tried to free Ivan Antonovich from the Shlisselburg fortress and give him the crown, thereby overthrowing Catherine II. These events took place just in those days when the Empress was absent from the capital (she arrived in the Baltic States). The case itself ended with the death of the pretender to the throne and the arrest of Mirovich himself.
N.I. Panin took an active part in the election of the king of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth - Stanislav Poniatovsky. Under pressure, the electoral Diet of the Rzecz Pospolita, without any debate, elected Stanislav Poniatovsky as king. This happened on July 4, 1764. In principle, the main source of intrigue in Warsaw was the Empress Catherine the Great herself. Panin, however, fully complied with all her requirements.
Panin was the initiator of the creation of the Imperial Council. The one that was not created at the very last moment. This project was of national importance - it was supposed to help the empress in governing the state. The composition of the imperial council was to include from six to eight people, four of whom would be secretaries of state - they would be in charge of managing domestic and foreign policy, as well as the military and maritime industries. The days off for the council were to be Saturday and Sunday. It should be borne in mind that Catherine the Great could either support or reject any decision of the council. Catherine II even seemed to like the project: she signed the prepared Manifesto on its establishment, even announced the composition of this council. But something made Catherine the Great tear up the sheet with the Manifesto. Why did she do it. Scientists believe that this is partly due to a blow to pride, since earlier such bodies were created with the aim of helping empresses who do not know anything about government. Catherine II did not consider herself to be such. An even more important reason seems to be the decree, which Catherine the Great did not like, to remove the favorites from managerial affairs.
Panin's project provided for the reform of the Senate. Panin did not see any significant efficiency in the current Senate. It was a very cumbersome institution - it included thirty senators, each of whom, according to Panin, "comes to the Senate meeting as a guest for dinner."
Panin, leading the foreign policy department, carried out only the will of Catherine II. If Panin's opinion contradicted the opinion of Catherine the Great, she simply ignored him. Panin, on the other hand, always carried out all the orders of Catherine II, did not mind her even when he had his own convictions. Panin could not be denied zeal.
In honor of Paul's reaching the age of majority, Catherine the Great generously awarded N.I. Panin. He was awarded the title, which was regarded as a field marshal, more than eight thousand serfs, as well as one hundred thousand rubles. Disposing of these gifts, Panin showed himself as a noble and disinterested person: he gave about half of the peasants to his three main subordinates, although Nikita Ivanovich owed nothing to them.
Panin was not married. Without starting a family, he, nevertheless, did not allow casual connections. But still Nikita Ivanovich made two attempts to get married. In 1766, Panin fell in love with Countess Stroganova (who, incidentally, was the daughter of Chancellor Vorontsov). In this regard, Nikita Ivanovich abandoned his affairs, even began to lose respect for himself, but Catherine the Great did not punish him in any way. In 1767 the Empress granted Nikita Ivanovich the count's dignity. This gift was dedicated to the anniversary of the coronation of Catherine II. The second attempt dates back to 1768. Panin fell passionately in love with Anna Sheremeteva - the daughter of P. B. Sheremetev. There was even a wedding scheduled for May 10, 1768. However, just before the wedding, Anna fell ill with smallpox and soon died. This was a significant loss for Panin. Nikita Ivanovich abandoned all business again. Catherine the Great did not remove him from business, because she understood how educated he was. She appreciated his talents as a diplomat.