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I'm not convinced that any of the people listed here before Witte in 1905 should be considered heads of government. john k (talk) 04:04, 31 July 2014 (UTC)
I'd tend to agree. As an absolute monarchy, surely the Emperor/Empress would have been the head of government? Sotakeit (talk) 12:49, 18 August 2014 (UTC)
You both probably have a different understanding of a head of government. The Emperor/Empress was the head of state, not the government. Also by that you decline any reliable sources that list almost the same politicans, even in soviet sources.--Tomcat(7) 18:50, 19 August 2014 (UTC)
Does the word "Autocrat" mean anything to you ? Or "L'etat, c'est moi". The notion that the head of government is different to the head of state is a fairly modern one, and not universal either. Look at the United States, for example. I agree with the previous comments, that this list looks rather dubious. Lathamibird (talk) 07:29, 2 March 2015 (UTC)
Furthermore, even if the emperor has appointed a cabinet/privy council/committee of ministers, call it what you like, to be a "government", then only one of them can be the prime minister/head of government . The table currently lists multiple "ministers" with the same period of service. They can't all be the "head" of the "government".Lathamibird (talk) 07:34, 2 March 2015 (UTC)
However, sources say that highest ministers before Witte were de facto heads of government, eg here it says that Charles Frederick of Holstein-Gottorp was factual head of government. But I am not an expert, I just trust reliable sources.--Tomcat(7) 17:47, 2 March 2015 (UTC)