However, he found a friend in Bestuzhev's supplanter, Michael Vorontsov, and when in 1760 he was unexpectedly appointed the governor of the little grand duke Paul, his influence was assured.
Was endeavouring to arm the northern powers against Peter the Great, and this it was Bestuzhev's mission to counteract.
The sudden death of Peter the Great seriously injured Bestuzhev's prospects.
Moreover, through Bestuzhev's efforts, the credit of the Prussian king (whom he rightly regarded as more dangerous than France) at the Russian court fell steadily, and the vice-chancellor prepared the way for an alliance with Austria by acceding to the treaty of Breslau (1st of November 1743).
On the throne, alienated the empress from Austria for a time; and Bestuzhev's ruin was regarded as certain when, in 1743, the French agent, the marquis de La Chetardie, arrived to reinforce his other enemies.
Bestuzhev's offer, communicated to the British government at the end of 1745, to attack Prussia if Great Britain would guarantee subsidies to the amount of some £6,000,000, was rejected as useless now that Austria and Prussia were coming to terms. Then he turned to Austria, and on the 22nd of May 1746, an offensive and defensive alliance was concluded between the two powers manifestly directed against Prussia.
The hour of Bestuzhev's triumph coincided with the peace congress of Aixla-Chapelle, which altered the whole situation of European politics and introduced fresh combinations, the breaking away of Prussia from France and a rapprochement between England and Prussia, with the inevitable corollary of an alliance between France and the enemies of Prussia.
Bestuzhev's violent political prejudices at first prevented him from properly recognizing this change.
The accession of Russia to the anti-Prussian coalition (1756) was made over his head, and the cowardice and incapacity of Bestuzhev's friend, the Russian commander-in-chief, Stephen Apraksin, after the battle of Gross-Jagersdorf (1757), was made the pretext for overthrowing the chancellor.