Rumor : Catherine died after being crushed by her horse Catherine did love horseback riding, but that is not what did her in. She died of a stroke in her bed at the ripe old age of sixty-seven. Everyone knows that it is not polite to start rumors about your empress. So who started this poppycock about Catherine’s death?
Rumor Suspect #1:
A member of the Russian Court?
The dainty ladies and dapper gentlemen of Catherine’s court were shocked by her riding habits. Catherine often rode astride a horse instead of using the conventional sidesaddle. There must have been much whispering behind her back.
Rumor Suspect #2:
A supporter of Peter the III?
Many of Catherine’s court were angry about a German empress on the throne. Catherine came to Russia from Germany to marry Peter III. Being German born, she was forbidden to rule over Russia by herself. This minor detail didn’t stop her from kicking her nincompoop husband off the throne and taking his place.
Rumor Suspect #3:
A French enemy?
At the time of Catherine’s reign, the French were going through an especially raucous period called the French Revolution. The people of France were tired of kings, queens, and useless authority figures and were having a grand old time chopping their heads off. Catherine was hopping mad about the beheading and was not a fan of torture. She spoke out against France’s unruly behavior and made many French enemies.