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Video:Profile: Catherine the Great

with Neville Miller

Interested in learning about the life of Russian empress, Catherine the Great? Watch this About.com video to see a quick biography.See Transcript

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Transcript:Profile: Catherine the Great

Hi, my name is Neville Miller and today on About.com we are profiling the Russian empress, Catherine the Great.

Catherine the Great: Born a Princess in Prussia

Catherine the Great was born in May of 1729. She was born as a princess in Prussia, which later became part of the German Empire. Catherine later married the heir to the Russian throne, the Grand Duke Peter.

Life on the Throne for Catherine the Great

While on the throne, she helped expand Russia's borders into the Black Sea and into central Europe. She also promoted education and Enlightment over the elite.

Catherine the Great's Lovers

Catherine the Great also had many lovers. She came to the throne with her lover Count Gregory Orlov. She remained committed to him but also had several other lovers.

Death and Myths

Catherine the Great died in 1796 of illness. However, there are several myths about her death. Myth one was that Catherine was crushed to death by a horse while trying to have sex with it. This myth was believed to be started as an attack on Catherine. During past centuries, the easiest way to verbally offend women was sex. Another myth was that Catherine died on the toilet. Catherine did collapse on the toilet but did not actually die there.  Doctors moved her to bed where they tried to save her and priests tried to heal her soul. She died later in her bed. Catherine the Great's son, Paul, succeeded her to the throne.

That's a look at empress Catherine the Great. For more information, visit About.com. Thanks for watching.

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