2017-06-13 01:02:41 UTC
What if Russia is satisfied with the Treaty of Cardis (1661)? The coastal
territory remains in the Swedish possession but the Russian merchants have
a right to set up their warehouses in Stockholm, Riga, Revel, Narva (and
Swedes got similar rights for a number of the Russian cities) and the same
goes for a right of free passage. Also, the reasonable taxes had been
established not to cut off the Russian trade.
Of course, a temptation of getting their own port had been big but even after
the Great Northern War for most of the XVIII an overwhelming volume of cargo to
and from St Petersburg and Riga had been carried by the foreign ships.
So, on one hand there is no St. Petersburg (but perhaps Novgorod becomes more
important, as was the case before it was destroyed by Ivans III & IV). OTOH,
there are no 2+ decades of the Northern War and few more wars with Sweden in
the XVIII and early XIX with the huge stress on the Russian economy (and
Sweden retains possession of the Baltic provinces (and in XIX century
Finland) and is not suffering from the exhaustion caused by the GNW but
perhaps it will eventually face a need to defend them from the expanding
Perhaps, there is earlier concentration on anti-Ottoman/Crimea activities
or "Drang Nach Osten" Russian style: earlier expansion into the Central Asia.