Author Topic: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad  (Read 275983 times)

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Offline Janet_W.

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #165 on: January 17, 2006, 03:51:20 PM »
Alexandra was, like all of us, a product of her childhood. While many who knew her, such as Marie of Romania, did not find her  convivial, she had many defenders, both during and after her lifetime. That Nicholas wished to marry Alexandra above all others says quite a lot; beyond her beautiful physical appearance, he appreciated her strength of character and sincere desire to lead a good and useful life. That these characteristics later worked against her and, ultimately, her family and all of Russia, is one of the many tragedies of this world.

Offline matushka

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #166 on: January 17, 2006, 04:13:20 PM »
I would like to emphazise on 3 Alexandra's qualities: her sincerity, her charity, and something as a sense of organization.
Her sincerity: whatever she did - as it seems to me, I can be wrong- she did it with all her heart and conviction that it is really necessary. She did not work at the lazaret to show her, she worked giving all the possible time, knowledge, heart. She was not a supercificial women.
Her charity: she pay attention to the little, the poors, the wounded, the invalids soldiers. She found lazarets, sanatoriums and personnaly covered their work. She found houses for children without parents, a big house for the invalids of the Japanese' war and, once more, covered their work. She gave not only money but her own work. Invalids of this house and wounded of the lazaret "adore" her, as one of them wrote after years, adore her for her motherhood.
Her sense of organization. She tought about what is necessary for Russia, from the social point of view and founded interesting schools of artisanat, of folk arts, for nursing, to learn young girls how to take care of the children, how to sew and so one. Those girls then had to teach their knowledge. At the house for the invalids, she organize a lot of ateliers. Invalids could work, their received a little salary and receive news knowledge for their future.
Sorry, I can not explain what I really want to in english.
So, 3 qualities I found really attaching. The problem is that she did not always succeded in: her sincerity was not understandable, her charity stay in the shadow of her bad influence on the political life; her ideas about the future of Russia... well, nothing to comment!
Alexandra's story show once more than, as we say in french, "l'enfer est pave de bonnes intentions"!
I did not speak about the fact she was a loving wife and an attentive mother, because it is really an evidence.

Offline ChristineM

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #167 on: January 17, 2006, 04:20:38 PM »
Her ability, after almost a century, to engage us in on going discussions, writers to write books and publishers to publish them.

An amazingly complex, rich, timeless personality which still has the ability to capture countless imaginations.

tsaria

Offline Marialana

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #168 on: January 17, 2006, 05:22:51 PM »
There are several qualities that I find admirable in Alexandra. Here is my laundry list, so to speak... :)

1. Her sincerity was genuine. Right, wrong, or somewhere in the middle, most everything Alexandra did came from her heart. The story of her coming to Russia a shy, inexperienced girl thrust to the lions of Russian society has been told a thousand times, and it is true. Her shyness may have inhibited her from forming an "acceptable" circle of friends, but somehow I doubt it was just that. She found the fakery and banality of high society repugnant and refused to be a part of it. Many people accuse of her not fulfilling her duties as an Empress in this way, of being the anti-Maria Feodorovna, somewhat of a failure as a consort in this regard. While I understand her social role, in my own personal value system I admire her much more for not "playing the game" and remaining true to herself and what she believed was best for her immediate family.
2. She was charitable. Matushka's post summed this point up beautifully to me. She didn't just name hospitals and visit soldiers, she cared for them. People will question her motives, and delve into psychological reasons why she felt the need to do this, but I'm of the inclination that Alexandra was a nurturer who truly felt a desire to help (however misguided or resented her actions ended up)
3. She was loyal. Her love for Nicholas was boundless and she was utterly devoted to him. The fact that he loved her back in kind is a testament to her good qualities as well, as I believe that there are many good things about her which he saw and knew that we will never know about this intensely private woman. She married him knowing that she needed to produce an heir, true, but no one knew how difficult that was going to be. She went through sheer hell to eventually bear Alexei, at the expense of her physical and mental health. Her loyalty extended to her friendships (Sonia Orbeliani comes to mind) even to her own obvious detriment. People may say what they want about Rasputin, her attachment to him, etc., but from an objective standpoint I'd have to say that if I wanted a friend in my corner that I knew would have my back if I was threatened, I'd choose her over Nicholas in a heartbeat. Nicholas was a waffler, but not Alexandra. I appreciate that completely.
4. I don't think that Alexandra was perfect, not by any stretch of the imagination. She had a LOT of faults, some of them exceedingly serious and the cause of much harm to herself, her family, and untold others. But I DO think she was greatly misunderstood. She had the best of intentions and truly loved Russia in the most honest and pure way that she knew how and understood. Unfortunately for herself, for her family, and for Russia, the shape of her intellect, heart, and opinions didn't fit into the mold that Russia wanted, and perhaps needed, them to fit into. That to me is the real tragedy.

Alixz

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #169 on: January 17, 2006, 06:31:20 PM »
I wonder how well Lady Diana Spencer would have done in Russia if she were in Alix's place.

Diana was just as shy and inexperienced, but (on her part) just as solidly in love.

We all remark on Alix's shyness and how she had no time to "get used" to Russia before she became Tsaritsa.

Diana had all the time in the world (but a non loving spouse) and just look at how dynamic she became!!

I am not a fan of Alix's, everyone says how strong she was and how weak Nicholas was.  Too bad she wasn't intellegent enough to use her strength to help him instead of compounding his failings.

But that said, she did love her close friends.  And right or wrong would defend them to the death (either theirs or hers).

Matushka - I got the part about "paved with good intentions" but what does ''l'enfer" translate to?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Alixz »

Offline koloagirl

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #170 on: January 17, 2006, 08:38:02 PM »
 :)

I have always felt that Alexandra has been "demonized" for so many years - it is far too easy to put the blame on the "crazed, delusional, domineering spouse" -- I feel that she was a fragile woman in a position that she was just not suited for.

Having had no time to prepare herself for her role as Tsarina (unlike Minnie) she was immediately put in the role of the "funeral bride" and never caught the affection of the public.  Being so painfully shy in public certainly didn't help her - perceived as haughty and unapproachable, and with a mother-in-law who she didn't get along with - who could have mentored her - I think she just started off bad and got worse from there.

Her good qualities were many:  her enduring love for her husband, her love for her children, especially the heir - her true love for her adopted home, - her ability to be a true and devoted friend - her great belief in the Church.  

Was she suited to be a Tsarina, especially one in such a turbulent time in history?  No.  She was mentally fragile and made some bad decisions certainly.  But was she the cause of the downfall of the Monarchy?  No.  She was far more suited to be the Princess of one of English princes where she could live a quiet life and devote herself to her children and family.  

I have always felt very sorry for her.  Her haunting look in most of her pictures always strikes me as much more than just a "pose."  

Janet R.
Janet R.

Offline GrandDuchess_Bella

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #171 on: January 17, 2006, 08:48:13 PM »
Alexandra had many good qualities that I certainly appreciate:

1. Loving mother and wife - this quality stands out more that anything. Almost everyone see's it. It was one of the most obvious things about her.

2. Strong Will - She was determined to show Russia that she was a true russian at heart. I've always admired that.

3. Sense of humor - Not many people see this but Alexandra did have a slight sense of humor. It is difficult to see but when you read the IF letters, look between the lines.

4. Caring nature - Alexandra not only had a caring nature towards her family but towards others as well. She was more than willing to help any way she could to the sick while in the hospitals.

Offline Russian_Duchess_#5

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #172 on: January 17, 2006, 09:31:04 PM »
Empress Aleksandra was just good.
I am sorry, these words may sound unfeeling, simple, and unintelligent. But, behind the words "just good", there is a true faith that the Empress Aleksandra was a kind soul, and had a humane sense of being.
She was one of the most important people in history, and will always be remembered that way.
I have never gaven a comment on the Empress that is harsh, or against her.
I respect her as we all should.

Sofia

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #173 on: January 17, 2006, 10:28:41 PM »
Empress Alexandra was DEFINITELY a loving and caring wife! No doubt about that! Read her letters to Nicholas. She's obviously devoted. ::)
I would say she was a good mother. I've read her letters to her children. She obviously cares about them, PARTICULARLY Aleksei! He was a haemophiliac and she stressed over his illness a lot and was always desperate to seek help.
Now I'm not sure about intelligence. She always did what Rasputin told her to do and that ended up trouble. She didn't even take a chance to look at the police reports of what Rasputin's true character was really like (though she was desperate to save her son)!
But she was loving and caring towards her family. She was an acceptional woman.  ;D

leushino

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #174 on: January 17, 2006, 10:45:27 PM »
She was just good? Hmmm... when Stolypin died, her behavior seems anything but good. In fact, his widow took some relatively drastic measures to ensure the Romanovs would not enter the room during his last minutes and I've read in Kurth's book that Alexandra had this to say:

"... his destiny was fulfilled.... Believe me, one must not feel sorry for those who are no more." Kurth concluded, "There was one reason above all others for Alexandra's unfeeling dismissal of the man who had done so much to preserve her husband's reign: Stolypin had had the courage to take on Rasputin.

Now, I find it hard to equate goodness with this sort of behavior which to all intents and purposes smacks of: well... he got his just desserts.

Offline RichC

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #175 on: January 17, 2006, 11:45:32 PM »
I think Alexandra made those comments to Kokovtsov, who succeeded Stolypin.  He mentions it in his memoirs, Out of My Past.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by RichC »

Offline Helen

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #176 on: January 18, 2006, 01:59:17 AM »
Quote
She was just good? Hmmm... when Stolypin died, her behavior seems anything but good. In fact, his widow took some relatively drastic measures to ensure the Romanovs would not enter the room during his last minutes and I've read in Kurth's book that Alexandra had this to say:

"... his destiny was fulfilled.... Believe me, one must not feel sorry for those who are no more." Kurth concluded, "There was one reason above all others for Alexandra's unfeeling dismissal of the man who had done so much to preserve her husband's reign: Stolypin had had the courage to take on Rasputin.

Now, I find it hard to equate goodness with this sort of behavior which to all intents and purposes smacks of: well... he got his just desserts.


Leushino,  You have clearly not read the words she wrote to her brother about the attack and Stolypin's wounds before his death. These were words of compassion, that also showed that the situation was not exactly as some of us may think it was. If you would read those words, you might realise that your interpretation of the above quote is an unduly negative one.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2009, 10:09:24 AM by Alixz »
"The Correspondence of the Empress Alexandra of Russia with Ernst Ludwig and Eleonore, Grand Duke and Duchess of Hesse. 1878-1916"  -  http://www.bod.de/index.php?id=296&objk_
"Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig and Princess Alix of Hesse and by Rhine in Italy - 1893"

Offline Grace

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #177 on: January 18, 2006, 05:24:55 AM »
Do we read from most of the posts in this thread that Alexandra's most positive feature seems to be that she was a loving mother?

Offline matushka

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #178 on: January 18, 2006, 07:02:43 AM »
Alixz: l'enfer is the contrary of the Heavens, is that hell in english? Inferno in italian, ad in russian, Hole in german. Well, that place Satan is living!!!

Alixz

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Re: Alexandra's Personality Traits - Good & Bad
« Reply #179 on: January 18, 2006, 07:27:04 AM »
Thanks, Matushka, I sort of thought that because in English we say that "The road to H-ll is paved with good intentions."

I just wanted to make sure.  And you are so right.  Good intentions do not make for a "good" person, " but good deeds do.

So many of us do all the wrong things for the right reasons.  I think that Alix was one of us.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Alixz »