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State Council of Imperial Russia
Early Tsar's Councils were small and dealt primarily with the external politics .
Peter III of Russia created the Imperial Council on May 20, 1762 ("Императорский Совет"), or, formally "The Council at the Highest Court" ("Совет при высочайшем дворе"). It was dismissed shortly after the succession of Catherine II of Russia.
The State Council was established by Alexander I of Russia in 1810 as part of Speransky's reforms. Although envisaged by Speransky as the upper chamber of the Russian parliament, it was actually an advisory organ composed of people whom the tsar could trust.
During 1906-1917, the status of the State Counsil was defined by the Russian Constitution of 1906. Its chairman was appointed by Tsar. Initially half of its members were appointed by Tsar and half by elections from various categories of society, separately (clergy, Russian Academy of Science, universities, guberniya-level zemstvo, Dvoryan Assembly, merchants("купечество"), industrialists ("промышленники")). After 1910, only the Tsar appointed the members. During this period it is sometimes formally compared to the upper house of the parliament, the Duma being compared with the lower house.
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