they don’t call catherine the great for nothing. although she wasn’t the most democratic of rulers in history, she made some great strides for her empire. she brought russia to the stage as a great european power and she helped modernize it with the rest of western europe. i can’t say i agree with her empowering the oligarchy, but who can judge these days? my opinions of her politics aside, she was smart as a whip. at a pivotal moment in history, she was widely recognized as one of the “enlightened despots” (oxymoron.com/much?) who kept regular correspondence with voltaire and montesquieu. in the long run her efforts help put governments on the course to better and more intelligent days. catherine had to have been a strong woman as evidenced by her accomplishments.
1: meeting up with voltaire: dress by bottega veneta, shoes by anne demeulemeester
2: foiling the coup d’etat: top by givenchy, pants by miu miu, shoes by alexander mcqueen
3: catherine is great: dress by kenzo, shoes by balmain