Antiqua Print Gallery Alexander II of Russia
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Alexander II of Russia

Alexander (Aleksandr) II Nikolaevich (Russian: Aleksandr II Nikolaevich) (Moscow, 29 April 1818–13 March 1881 in St. Petersburg), also known as Alexander the Liberator (Russian: Aleksandr Osvoboditel') was the Emperor of the Russian Empire from 3 March 1855 until his assassination in 1881. Coronation 7 September 1856. He was also the Grand Duke of Finland and the King of Poland. Alexander II succeeded to the throne upon the death of his father in 1855. The first year of his reign was devoted to the prosecution of the Crimean War, and after the fall of Sevastopol to negotiations for peace, led by his trusted counselor, Prince Gorchakov. It was widely thought that the country had been exhausted and humiliated by the war. Encouraged by public opinion he began a period of radical reforms, including an attempt to not to depend on a landed aristocracy controlling the poor, to develop Russia's natural resources and to thoroughly to reform all branches of the administration. Autocratic power was now in the hands of someone with some sort of flexible thought, sufficient prudence and practicality. However, the growth of a revolutionary movement to the "left" of the educated classes led to an abrupt end to Alexander's changes when he was assassinated in 1881. It is notable that after Alexander became tsar in 1855, he maintained a generally liberal course at the helm while being a target for numerous assassination attempts (1866, 1873, 1880).

(Source Wikipedia)