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[[File:1200px-Russian_Troops_NGM-v31-p372.jpg|thumbnail|300px|left|Russian troops moving to the front lines in 1917]]
In 1913 there were lavish public celebrations of the 300th anniversary of the Romanov Dynasty’s rule in Russia. The Tsar used the anniversary to demonstrate that he was appointed by God to rule ‘all the Russia’s.<ref>Figes, p. 117.</ref> That year the Tsar and his family were very popular and it seemed to the revolutionaries that there would never be a revolution. However, after the assassination of the Archduke Ferdinand, Europe was plunged into war. Russia was allied with France and Britain against Germany, Austro-Hungary and Turkey. Russia invaded Prussia in 1914, but after some initial success was defeated. It also fought campaigns against the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empire.
The war on the Eastern Front became bogged down in trench warfare. Russia endured very heavy casualties and it placed a great strain on its resources. Poverty increased and food supplies became scarcer and the lives of many ordinary people became intolerable. The Tsarist government became very unpopular. A scandal also made the Tsar and his family hated by many. A Siberian holy man, called Rasputin gained great influence with the Tsar and his family, as he claimed to have the ability to heal the crown prince’s haemophilia. This brought him ‘immense power and prestige at Court’ but it scandalized many.<ref>Figes, p. 31.</ref> By 1917, the Russian people were war weary and strikes became very common. The Tsar refused to enter into peace negotiations with the Central Powers, despite several defeats on the Eastern Front and the suffering of the ordinary people.