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Duma (Russian

Duma (Russian, assembly), lower house of the Russian parliament (1906-17), created by Tsar Nicholas II in response to demands made during the Revolution of 1905 for popular representation in government. Each of the four electoral classes (landowners, townspeople, industrial workers, and peasants) elected delegates who, in turn, chose the members of the Duma. The tsar had the power to veto the assembly`s acts and to dissolve it. In theory, the Duma`s consent was required for all legislation, but this rule was often disregarded in practice.

The First Duma (May-July 1906) was dissolved

The First Duma (May-July 1906) was dissolved after only 73 days for being too critical of government policy. When the Second Duma (March-June 1907) proved similarly unmanageable, it, too, was dissolved, and the electoral system was altered to give greater representation to the upper classes. The Third Duma (1907-12) had a conservative majority and was allowed to function normally for its full term. The Fourth Duma (1912-17), although even more conservative, became a center of opposition to the government during World War I. Tsar Nicholas dissolved it in February (March, New Style) 1917, shortly before he was overthrown. "See "Russian Revolution.

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