Author Topic: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"  (Read 90458 times)

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anabel

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #45 on: April 08, 2006, 09:45:34 AM »
Hey!

We know how much Alexander II. loved little children, so now I wonder which kind of relationship he had with his grandchildren, the children of Alexander III, Vladimir and Marie, Duchess of Edinburgh? Curiously, I have never read anything about it (despite one anecdote in Romanov Autumn).... :( Maybe somebody out there could help out? :) ;)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by anabel »

Offline Suzanne

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #46 on: April 08, 2006, 04:10:24 PM »
Baroness Buxhoeveden's Memoir "Before the Storm" contains a number of anecdotes about the future Tsar Nicholas II's relationship with his grandfather, Alexander II. The two appear to have been very close. In Bux's book, she describes Nicholas telling his daughter Olga about the times he spent his grandfather as a child, passing on the family lore so to speak. Incidentally, the scenes in the memoir indicate that Nicholas went for walks just with Olga sometimes, challenging the idea that OTMA were always together, with the exception of the daughter who kept Alix company on any given day.

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #47 on: April 08, 2006, 08:45:57 PM »
In Queen Marie of Romania's memoirs she only mentions one or two meetings with him, when she was very young. She was born around 1876 and he died just a few years later. Not only was she herself very young but there wasn't much time to make very many visits to Russia before he died.

I don't know what, if any, memories Alfred Jr or Ducky would've had.
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Offline Caleb

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #48 on: April 08, 2006, 09:10:26 PM »
I've heard that when Alexander II was on his deathbed, despite of his pain after the bomb was thrown at him, Alexander tried to give Nicholas a reassuring smile.

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #49 on: April 10, 2006, 10:23:14 AM »
I always thought, whatever the reason, bringing a boy of Nicholas's age to such a gruesome scene was awful.  :(
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Offline Madal

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #50 on: April 11, 2006, 02:02:22 PM »
What was Missy or Ducky's opinion about their grandfather's second wife? And second marriage? Did they write something about it (in letters, memories ...) ?

Offline Suzanne

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #51 on: April 11, 2006, 07:50:27 PM »
John Sullivan's work "A Fatal Passion" - biography of Ducky - certainly indicates that Ducky and Missy's mother was outraged when she visited Russia to find her mother dying and her father having acquired a mistress. According to Sullivan, this was the only time Marie argued with her father and she was later remorseful for leaving him on such bad terms because he was assassinated soon afterward.

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #52 on: April 12, 2006, 12:08:50 AM »
A past item from Sotheby's

The children of Alexander II and Marie

(going diagonally from far left)
1. Nixa
2. Sasha

3. Vladimir
4. Alexis
5. Serge

6. Paul
7. Marie

not portrayed--Alexandra



« Last Edit: February 10, 2011, 05:46:59 AM by Svetabel »
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Offline imperial angel

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #53 on: April 12, 2006, 11:02:35 AM »
Well, I think he was great, in that he pushed some much needed reforms ahead, and actually went through with them rather than hedging. He died, however, on the eve of greater refoms, so he perhaps is not remembered as much as he would be otherwise. His personal life was perhaps a discredit to the dynasty, and it certainly his second marriage didn't make for a good image. He was human, going on what he felt, and not really thinking of position, as he ought to have been. He was simply an older married man, with a wife unable to please him anymore, who took up with a young girl, who he deeply loved, an all too human story. But it was not as moral as he was supposed to be, that's true. He defintely was forward thinking, and very intelligent, perhaps more of a true European monarch than either of his succesors.

Offline imperial angel

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #54 on: April 12, 2006, 01:34:38 PM »
This is a pretty widespread rumour sadly enough. Perhaps the fact that is to be wished is why it became so widely known. Had he lived longer, perhaps more reforms would have happened, that's possible. I used to believe thus myself, because it's a rumour that seems to be everywhere. It even sounds a bit credible.

Offline CountessKate

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #55 on: April 13, 2006, 04:42:58 AM »
One of the functions which the salon of GD Elena Pavlovna performed, was keeping Alexander II on track for reforms.  Like many autocrats, such as Catherine II, he started out with good intentions and then began to get cold feet as vested interests exerted pressure, and there wasn't universal gratitude and rejoicing at the reforms which did get implemented.  In the GD's salon he could receive sympathy and support which wasn't always available elsewhere; no doubt it was very discouraging when you showed yourself to be at least a bit more liberal, but people still wanted to blow you up.  

Offline imperial angel

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #56 on: April 13, 2006, 10:45:27 AM »
Yes, that is true, that if he showed himself the least inclined to implement reforms, along came the revolutionaries. This was of course, bound to be discouraging, I'm sure. And this could be why a constitition never appeared during his lifetime. The revolutionaries actually, according to Radzinsky's book on this ruler, were caused by the reforms, because as soon as you give an inch, they take a mile, as they old saying goes, and want more, and if they don't get it, it's not going to be good. And as well, the revolutionaries knew that reforms on the part of Tsar could destroy their cause-reason to do away with him. He actually was a better Czar in Russian history than he is given credit for, as he idn't just talk about reforms like Catherine the Great-he did some.

Offline ilyala

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #57 on: April 14, 2006, 01:59:30 AM »
would he have been more 'moral' had he kept her in the background as a mere mistress? i know he wasn't very nice to his wife, but once she died, i think marrying katya was the right thing to do. and if you want you can compare him to other kings, like the french kings, who made a habbit out of giving their mistresses castles and apartments in versailles (where their wives also lived, which means alexander wasn't the first to do so). yes, in russia it was more unusual than in france for such a thing to happen, but what would you have him do? pull a peter the great and move marie to the monastery and marry katya?

i am in no way trying to defend a man who cheated on a wife that he chose against the wishes of his own parents. but i am saying that in the circumstances i think he behaved quite well.
'loving might be a mistake, but it's worth making'
ilya


Offline imperial angel

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #58 on: April 18, 2006, 11:31:50 AM »
I do think Alexander II acted the best he could, in both his personal and public life. He was human, as are we all, and his romance and second marriage have a familiar ring because of this. It was percieved to be negative, and was widely called so, but his ancestors hadn't been much better in their love lives.  I never meant to judge him, just to show how his actions were generally thought of.

Offline ALEXEI_P

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Re: Emperor Alexander II "the Liberator"
« Reply #59 on: April 18, 2006, 06:13:49 PM »
Friends at the Forum,

I think I mentioned this on another link, but I rember having heard/read that there was a correspondence--or at least an exchange of a few letters between Alexandre II and President Lincoln.
Is anyone else aware of this--does a correspondence exist?

I think it would be a fascinating exchange of ideas between two men that couldn't be more contrasting.

Thanks for any information that any of you might have.

Alexei