Mihail Sturdza

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For the Iron Guard politician, see Mihail R. Sturdza.
Mihail Sturza.jpg

Mihail Sturdza (Greek: Μιχαήλ Στούρτζας; 1795, Iaşi – 8 May 1884, Paris) was prince of Moldavia from 1834 to 1849.


A man of liberal education, he established the Mihaileana Academy, a kind of university, in Iaşi. He brought scholars from foreign countries to act as teachers, and gave a very powerful stimulus to the educational development of the country.

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In 1844 he decreed the emancipation of the Gypsies. Until then the Gypsies had been treated as slaves and owned by the Church or by private landowners; they had been bought and sold in the open market.

Mihail Sturdza also attempted the secularization of monastic establishments, which was carried out by Prince Alexandru Ioan Cuza in 1864, and the utilization of their endowments for national purposes. He quelled the attempted revolution in 1848 without bloodshed by arresting all the conspirators and expelling them from the country.

Under his rule, the internal development of Moldavia made immense progress; roads were built, industry developed, and Mihail is still gratefully remembered by the people.

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Preceded by
Russian occupation
Prince of Moldavia
Succeeded by
Grigore Alexandru Ghica