Timchenko K. V. The Parliament in Borgo: from idea to reality (.pdf)


The article analyzes the parliament’s preparation in Finland and the documents published during its work. The first part of the article describes the activity of George Magnus Sprengthporten. The author outlines several stages of the development of the draft of the Finnish Seim, covering the period from the 1780s to March 1809. The main purpose of Sprengthporten’s notes was to prove the necessity of the people’s assembly to the rulers (Catherine II and Alexander I) and to the highest state public figures. The apogee of his activity fell on the first months of the war between Russia and Sweden in 1808-1809. His notes about the desire of the Finns to go under the patronage of Russia and the aggravation of the international situation forced the Russian authorities to change the policy towards Finland. The Sejm convening, as a means of population appeasement, became the main goal of the authorities in the north-western direction. The second part of the article describes the Sejm’s immediate preparation and the opening ceremony and analyzes different documents published during the last work. The rights and powers of public representatives, noticed in different manifests and declarations, and limited in practice, are under research. The members of the Sejm were deprived of the right to hold law activity and to discuss many questions of the further region development. The deputies were practically powerless. Nevertheless, on the base of the published archive materials, the author concludes that the Emperor's attitude toward his new servants was generous, as he preserved the Finns’ rights and liberties.


Key words: the Sejm, the Grand Duchy of Finland, Borgo, George Magnus Sprengthporten, Alexander I, rights and liberties, constitution, the manifest of the 7th (20th) of January 1809, the declaration of the 15th of March 1809.


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