The Life and Times of Alexander II

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Alexander II was an Imperial figure in the history of Russia. He ruled as the Emperor of Russia, King of Congress Poland, and Grand Duke of Finland. His reign lasted from 2 March 1855 until his assassination. His death was one of the most devastating events in Russian history.

Alexander II was born in Moscow on April 17, 1818. Alexander II was born in Moscow on April 17, 1818. He was educated by legions of private tutors and endured a grueling military training. His father believed that this training was crucial to building his character. Alexander II married Maria Alexandrovna, a Hessian princess, in 1841. Both he and his wife later converted to Orthodoxy.

Alexander II traveled throughout the Russian Empire and Europe during the late 1830s and early 1840s. He was the first emperor to visit Siberia and met the Decembrists. He also petitioned Nicholas I to improve the situation in Siberia. His travels prompted him to fall in love with a princess from Hesse-Darmstadt. He married Maria Alexandrova in 1841 and had eight children. In 1845, Alexander II became heir to his father.

The Alexander II years saw significant reforms to the Russian government. He introduced the concept of local councils in each district, which provided services such as roads, schools, and medical care. He also instituted a universal military service and reorganized the legal system. While he was a strong supporter of democracy, he also opposed the repressive policies of his predecessors.

In 1881, he died of a tragic assassination attempt. He had ridden in a bulletproof carriage, gifted by Napoleon III. During his last trip, a radical revolutionary threw a bomb at his feet. The tsar was wounded, but was brought to the Winter Palace, where he was given his last rites. He died a few hours later.

Alexander II was also an outstanding foreign policy leader. He was able to negotiate with China in the 1860s and signed a treaty with the Chinese government. He also ended the Polish uprising. In 1877, he led Russia to war against Turkey in support of a Christian group in Bulgaria and Bosnia.

Alexander II had many successes in improving the lives of the Russian people, but he was the target of revolutionaries. In 1866, peasant uprisings had provoked many radicals to take aim at him. One such organization was the People's Will and carried out several assassination attempts. In 1881, an assassination attempt occurred on the Catherine Canal.

Alexander II was buried in a grey-green jade tomb in the Peter Paul Fortress Cathedral. A statue of Alexander II was unveiled in Helsinki Senate Square in 1899. The statue was designed by Theodor Decker. In Tampere, the Alexander II Church is named after him.

So, Alexander II was an Imperial figure in the history of Russia. He ruled as the Emperor of Russia, King of Congress Poland, and Grand Duke of Finland. His reign lasted from 2 March 1855 until his assassination. His death was one of the most devastating events in Russian history.

September 12, 2022
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History

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Russian Empire

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