Catherine the Great is chosen by Barbara Stocking. Matthew Parris presents.
Catherine the Great assumed power in a St Petersburg coup, extended the empire into Crimea, Ukraine and Alaska. is Russia's longest lasting female ruler, and wasn't even Russian herself. All of this intrigues Dame Barbara Stocking, former head of Oxfam, who admires Catherine's leadership style.
Biographer Virginia Rounding provides the details of her background and her lovers, and Matthew Parris presents.
The producer in Bristol is Miles Warde.
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