By Marie-Pierre Rey,Susan Emanuel

Alexander i used to be a ruler with excessive aspirations for the folk of Russia. Cosseted as a tender grand duke by means of Catherine the nice, he ascended to the throne in 1801 after the brutal assassination of his father. during this magisterial biography, Marie-Pierre Rey illuminates the advanced forces that formed Alexander’s tumultuous reign and sheds awesome new mild at the good-looking ruler identified to his humans as "the Sphinx."

 

Despite an early and bold dedication to sweeping political reforms, Alexander observed his liberal aspirations crushed via civil unrest in his personal state and by means of expensive confrontations with Napoleon, which culminated within the French invasion of Russia and the burning of Moscow in 1812. ultimately, Alexander grew to become again Napoleon’s forces and entered Paris a victor years later, yet by way of then he had already grown weary of army glory. because the years handed, the tsar who defeated Napoleon could develop into more and more preoccupied together with his personal non secular salvation, an obsession that led him to pursue a rapprochement among the Orthodox and Roman churches.

 

When in exile, Napoleon as soon as remarked of his Russian rival: “He might pass a ways. If I die the following, he'll be my real inheritor in Europe.” It was once to not be. Napoleon died on Saint Helena and Alexander succumbed to typhus 4 years later on the age of forty-eight. yet during this richly nuanced portrait, Rey breathes new existence into the tsar who stood on the heart of the political chessboard of early nineteenth-century Europe, a key determine on the center of international relations, warfare, and overseas intrigue in the course of that region’s such a lot tumultuous years.

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