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NICHOLAS II (Russian : Николай II Алекса́ндрович, tr. Nikolay II Aleksandrovich; 18 May 1868 – 17 July 1918) was the last Emperor
Emperor
of Russia
Russia
, ruling from 1 November 1894 until his forced abdication on 15 March 1917. His reign saw the fall of the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
from being one of the foremost great powers of the world to economic and military collapse. Due to the Khodynka Tragedy , anti-Semitic pogroms , Bloody Sunday , the violent suppression of the 1905 Revolution , the execution of political opponents and his perceived responsibility for the Russo-Japanese War , he was given the nickname NICHOLAS THE BLOODY by his political adversaries. Soviet historiography portrayed Nicholas as a weak and incompetent leader, whose decisions led to military defeats and the deaths of millions of his subjects.

Russia
Russia
suffered a decisive defeat in the 1904-05 Russo-Japanese War , which saw the annihilation of the Russian Baltic Fleet at the Battle of Tsushima , loss of Russian influence over Manchuria
Manchuria
and Korea
Korea
, and the Japanese annexation of South Sakhalin . The Anglo-Russian Entente , designed to counter German attempts to gain influence in the Middle East, ended the Great Game between Russia
Russia
and the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
.

Nicholas approved the Russian mobilisation on 30 July 1914, which led to Germany declaring war on Russia
Russia
on 1 August 1914. It is estimated that around 3,300,000 Russians
Russians
were killed in the First World War
First World War
. The Imperial Army\'s severe losses and the High Command's incompetent management of the war efforts, along with the lack of food and other supplies on the Home Front, were the leading causes of the fall of the House of Romanov
House of Romanov
dynasty.

Following the February Revolution
February Revolution
of 1917, Nicholas abdicated on behalf of himself and his son. Nicholas and his family were imprisoned and transferred to Tobolsk
Tobolsk
in late summer 1918. On 30 April 1918, Nicholas, Alexandra and his mother Marie were handed over to the local Ural Soviet in Ekaterinburg ; the rest of the captives followed on 23 May. With the approval of Lenin
Lenin
, Sverdlov and the rest of the top Bolshevik party leadership, Nicholas and his family were eventually executed on the night of 16–17 July 1918. The recovered remains of the Imperial Family were finally re-interred in St. Petersburg, eighty years to the day on 17 July 1998.

In 1981, Nicholas, his wife and their children were canonised as martyrs by the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
Outside Russia
Russia
, located in New York City. On 15 August 2000 Nicholas and his family were canonised as passion bearers , a title commemorating believers who face death in a Christ-like manner, by the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
within Russia.

CONTENTS

* 1 Family background * 2 Tsesarevich * 3 Engagement, accession and marriage

* 4 Reign

* 4.1 Initiatives in foreign affairs * 4.2 Ecclesiastical affairs * 4.3 Russo-Japanese War * 4.4 Anti-Jewish pogroms of 1903–1906 * 4.5 Bloody Sunday (1905) * 4.6 1905 Revolution * 4.7 Relationship with the Duma * 4.8 Tsarevich Alexei\'s illness and Rasputin
Rasputin
* 4.9 European affairs * 4.10 The Tercentenary * 4.11 First World War
First World War

* 4.12 Collapse

* 4.12.1 Abdication (1917)

* 4.13 Imprisonment * 4.14 Execution

* 5 Identification * 6 Funeral * 7 Sainthood * 8 Assessment * 9 Ancestors

* 10 Titles, styles, honours and arms

* 10.1 Titles and styles * 10.2 Honours * 10.3 Arms

* 11 Children * 12 Wealth * 13 Documentaries and films * 14 See also * 15 Note * 16 References * 17 Sources * 18 Further reading * 19 External links

FAMILY BACKGROUND

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Nicholas II as a child with his mother, Maria Feodorovna, in 1870

Nicholas was born in the Alexander Palace in Saint Petersburg , Russian Empire
Russian Empire
, the eldest son of Emperor
Emperor
Alexander III and Empress Maria Feodorovna of Russia
Russia
(formerly Princess Dagmar of Denmark). He had five younger siblings: Alexander (1869–1870), George (1871–1899), Xenia (1875–1960), Michael (1878–1918) and Olga (1882–1960). Nicholas often referred to his father nostalgically in letters after Alexander's death in 1894. He was also very close to his mother, as revealed in their published letters to each other.

His paternal grandparents were Emperor
Emperor
Alexander II and Empress
Empress
Maria Alexandrovna (born Princess Marie of Hesse and by Rhine). His maternal grandparents were King Christian IX and Queen Louise of Denmark
Denmark
. Nicholas was of primarily German and Danish descent, his last ethnically Russian ancestor being Grand Duchess Anna Petrovna of Russia
Russia
(1708-1728), daughter of Peter the Great . Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas II of Russia
Russia
with his physically similar cousin, King George V
George V
of the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
(right), in German military uniforms in Berlin
Berlin
before the war; 1913

Nicholas was related to several monarchs in Europe. His mother's siblings included Kings Frederik VIII of Denmark and George I of Greece
Greece
, as well as the United Kingdom's Queen Alexandra
Queen Alexandra
(consort of King Edward VII
Edward VII
). Nicholas, his wife Alexandra, and Wilhelm II, German Emperor
Emperor
were all first cousins of King George V
George V
of the United Kingdom . Nicholas was also a first cousin of both Haakon VII of Norway
Norway
and Maud of Wales , as well as King Constantine I of Greece
Constantine I of Greece
. Nicholas and Wilhelm II were in turn second cousins-once-removed, as each descended from King Frederick William III of Prussia
Frederick William III of Prussia
, as well as third cousins, as they were both great-great-grandsons of Tsar
Tsar
Paul I of Russia
Russia
. In addition to being second cousins through descent from Louis II, Grand Duke of Hesse and his wife Princess Wilhelmine of Baden , Nicholas and Alexandra
Nicholas and Alexandra
were also third cousins-once-removed, as they were both descendants of King Frederick William II of Prussia .

Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas II was the first cousin-once-removed of Grand Duke Nicholas Nikolaevich . To distinguish between them the Grand Duke was often known within the Imperial family as "Nikolasha" and "Nicholas the Tall", while the Tsar
Tsar
was "Nicholas the Short".

In his childhood, Nicholas, his parents and siblings made annual visits to the Danish royal palaces of Fredensborg and Bernstorff to visit his grandparents, the king and queen. The visits also served as family reunions, as his mother's siblings would also come from the United Kingdom, Germany and Greece
Greece
with their respective families. It was there in 1883, that he had a flirtation with one of his English first cousins, Princess Victoria . In 1873, Nicholas also accompanied his parents and younger brother, two-year-old George, on a two-month, semi-official visit to England. In London, Nicholas and his family stayed at Marlborough House
Marlborough House
, as guests of his "Uncle Bertie" and "Aunt Alix," the Prince and Princess of Wales, where he was spoiled by his uncle.

TSESAREVICH

Tsarevich Nicholas in Japan
Japan
(1891)

On 1 March 1881, following the assassination of his grandfather, Tsar
Tsar
Alexander II, Nicholas became heir apparent upon his father's ascension as Alexander III. Nicholas and his other family members bore witness to Alexander II's death, having been present at the Winter Palace in Saint Petersburg , where he was brought after the attack. For security reasons, the new tsar and his family relocated their primary residence to the Gatchina Palace
Gatchina Palace
outside the city, only entering the capital for various ceremonial functions. On such occasions, Alexander III and his family occupied the nearby Anichkov Palace .

In 1884, Nicholas's coming-of-age ceremony was held at the Winter Palace, where he pledged his loyalty to his father. Later that year, Nicholas's uncle, Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich , married Princess Elizabeth , daughter of Louis IV, Grand Duke of Hesse and his late wife Princess Alice of the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
(who had died in 1878), and a granddaughter of Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria
. At the wedding in St. Petersburg, the sixteen-year-old Tsarevich met with and admired the bride's youngest surviving sister, twelve-year-old Princess Alix . Those feelings of admiration blossomed into love following her visit to St. Petersburg five years later in 1889. Alix had feelings for him in turn. As a devout Lutheran, she was initially reluctant to convert to Russian Orthodoxy in order to marry Nicholas, but later relented.

Eventually, in 1890 Nicholas, along with his younger brother George and their cousin Prince George of Greece
Greece
set out on a world tour , although Grand Duke George fell ill and was sent home partway through the trip. Nicholas visited Egypt, India, Singapore, and Bangkok, receiving honors as a distinguished guest in each country. In April 1891, while traveling through the city of Otsu, Japan , Nicholas was the victim of an assassination attempt . The incident cut his trip short. Returning overland to St. Petersburg, he was present at the ceremonies in Vladivostok
Vladivostok
commemorating the beginning of work on the Trans-Siberian Railway . In 1893, Nicholas traveled to London on behalf of his parents to be present at the wedding of his cousin, George, Duke of York to Mary of Teck . Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria
was struck by the physical resemblance between the two cousins, and their appearances confused some at the wedding. During this time, Nicholas had an affair with St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg
ballerina Mathilde Kschessinska .

Despite being heir-apparent to the throne, however, Nicholas's father failed to prepare him for his future role as tsar. He attended meetings of the State Council ; however, as his father was only in his forties, it was expected that it would be several years before Nicholas would take the throne. Sergei Witte
Sergei Witte
, Russia's finance minister, saw things differently and suggested to the tsar that Nicholas be appointed to the Siberian Railway Committee. Alexander argued that Nicholas was not mature enough to take on serious responsibilities, to which Witte replied that if he was not introduced to state affairs Nicholas would never be ready to understand them. Alexander's assumptions about living a long life and having years to prepare Nicholas for becoming tsar would be proven wrong, as by 1894, Alexander III was suffering from ill health.

ENGAGEMENT, ACCESSION AND MARRIAGE

See also: Wedding of Nicholas II and Alexandra Feodorovna

In April 1894, Nicholas joined his Uncle Sergei and Aunt Elizabeth on a journey to Coburg, Germany, for the wedding of Elizabeth's and Alix's brother, Ernest Louis, Grand Duke of Hesse
Ernest Louis, Grand Duke of Hesse
, to their mutual first cousin Princess Victoria Melita of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha . Other guests included Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria
, Wilhelm II, German Emperor
Wilhelm II, German Emperor
, the Victoria, Princess Royal (Kaiser Wilhelm's mother and Queen Victoria's eldest daughter), Nicholas's uncle, the Prince of Wales , and the bride's parents, the Duke and Duchess of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha .

Once in Coburg Nicholas proposed to Alix, but she rejected his proposal, being reluctant to convert to Orthodoxy. But the Kaiser later told her she had a duty to marry Nicholas and to convert, as her sister Elizabeth had voluntarily done in 1892. Thus Nicholas and Alix became officially engaged on 20 April 1894. Nicholas's parents initially hesitated to give the engagement their blessing, as Alix had made poor impressions during her visits to Russia. They gave their consent only when they saw Tsar
Tsar
Alexander's health deteriorating. Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria
also initially opposed to the match; for, though she had no objections against Nicholas personally, she evidently disliked Russia. Official engagement photograph of Nicholas II and Alexandra, April 1894

That summer, Nicholas travelled to England to visit both Alix and the Queen. The visit coincided with the birth of the Duke and Duchess of York's first child, the future King Edward VIII . Along with being present at the christening, Nicholas and Alix were listed amongst the child's godparents. After several weeks in England, Nicholas returned home for the wedding of his sister, Xenia , to a cousin, Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich ("Sandro").

By that autumn, Alexander III lay dying. Upon learning that he would live only a fortnight, the Tsar
Tsar
had Nicholas summon Alix to the imperial palace at Livadia . Alix arrived on 22 October; the Tsar insisted on receiving her in full uniform. From his deathbed, he told his son to heed the advice of Witte, his most capable minister. Ten days later, Alexander III died at the age of forty-nine, leaving twenty-six-year-old Nicholas as Emperor
Emperor
of Russia. That evening, Nicholas was consecrated by his father's priest as Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas II and, the following day, Alix was received into the Russian Orthodox Church, taking the name Alexandra Feodorovna with the title of Grand Duchess and the style of Imperial Highness . Nicholas II and family.

Nicholas may have felt unprepared for the duties of the crown, for he asked his cousin and brother-in-law, Grand Duke Alexander, "What is going to happen to me and all of Russia?" Though perhaps under-prepared and unskilled, Nicholas was not altogether untrained for his duties as Tsar. Nicholas chose to maintain the conservative policies favoured by his father throughout his reign. While Alexander III had concentrated on the formulation of general policy, Nicholas devoted much more attention to the details of administration.

Leaving Livadia on 7 November, Tsar
Tsar
Alexander's funeral procession—which included Nicholas's paternal aunt Queen Olga of Greece
Greece
, and the Prince and Princess of Wales —arrived in Moscow. After lying in state in the Kremlin, the body of the Tsar
Tsar
was taken to St. Petersburg, where the funeral was held on 19 November. Tsar Nicholas II and Empress
Empress
Alexandra with their first child, 1896

Nicholas and Alix's wedding was originally scheduled for the spring of 1895, but it was moved forward at Nicholas's insistence. Staggering under the weight of his new office, he had no intention of allowing the one person who gave him confidence to leave his side. Instead, Nicholas\'s wedding to Alix took place on 26 November 1894, which was the birthday of the Dowager Empress
Empress
Marie Feodorovna, and court mourning could be slightly relaxed. Alexandra wore the traditional dress of Romanov brides, and Nicholas a hussar 's uniform. Nicholas and Alexandra, each holding a lit candle, faced the palace priest and were married a few minutes before one in the afternoon.

REIGN

Coronation by Valentin Serov
Valentin Serov
Nicholas II's Imperial Monogram Silk Imperial Crown of Russia
Russia
1896 Coronation gift to Nicholas II Nicholas II of Russia
Russia
as Tsarevich in 1892

Despite a visit to the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
in 1893, where he observed the House of Commons in debate and seemingly impressed by the machinery of constitutional monarchy , as well as a similar positive appraisal of the US Congress on an official visit to the United States as Tsesarevich, Nicholas turned his back on any notion of giving away any power to elected representatives in Russia. Shortly after he came to the throne , a deputation of peasants and workers from various towns' local assemblies (zemstvos ) came to the Winter Palace
Winter Palace
proposing court reforms, such as the adoption of a constitutional monarchy, and reform that would improve the political and economic life of the peasantry, in the Tver Address .

Although the addresses they had sent in beforehand were couched in mild and loyal terms, Nicholas was angry and ignored advice from an Imperial Family Council by saying to them: "... it has come to my knowledge that during the last months there have been heard in some assemblies of the zemstvos the voices of those who have indulged in a senseless dream that the zemstvos be called upon to participate in the government of the country. I want everyone to know that I will devote all my strength to maintain, for the good of the whole nation, the principle of absolute autocracy , as firmly and as strongly as did my late lamented father."

On 26 May 1896, Nicholas's formal coronation as Tsar
Tsar
was held in Uspensky Cathedral located within the Kremlin
Kremlin
. The Silk Imperial Crown Of Russia
Russia
was used, as an official coronation gift of the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
. Nicholas II was the first and only monarch to be presented with such a monumental coronation gift. It was not intended as ceremonial regalia, but as private Imperial property, a memento to his coronation.

In celebration on 27 May 1896, a large festival with food, free beer and souvenir cups was held in Khodynka Field outside Moscow. Khodynka was chosen as the location as it was the only place near Moscow large enough to hold all of the Moscow citizens. Khodynka was primarily used as a military training ground and the field was uneven with trenches. Before the food and drink was handed out, rumours spread that there would not be enough for everyone. As a result, the crowd rushed to get their share and individuals were tripped and trampled upon, suffocating in the dirt of the field. Of the approximate 100,000 in attendance, it is estimated that 1,389 individuals died and roughly 1,300 were injured. The Khodynka Tragedy was seen as an ill omen and Nicholas found gaining popular trust difficult from the beginning of his reign. The French ambassador's gala was planned for that night. The Tsar
Tsar
wanted to stay in his chambers and pray for the lives lost, but his uncles believed that his absence at the ball would strain relations with France, particularly the 1894 Franco-Russian Alliance . Thus Nicholas attended the party; as a result the mourning populace saw Nicholas as frivolous and uncaring.

During the autumn after the coronation, Nicholas and Alexandra
Nicholas and Alexandra
made a tour of Europe. After making visits to the emperor and empress of Austria-Hungary, the Kaiser of Germany, and Nicholas's Danish grandparents and relatives, Nicholas and Alexandra
Nicholas and Alexandra
took possession of their new yacht, the Standart , which had been built in Denmark. From there, they made a journey to Scotland to spend some time with Queen Victoria at Balmoral Castle
Balmoral Castle
. While Alexandra enjoyed her reunion with her grandmother, Nicholas complained in a letter to his mother about being forced to go shooting with his uncle, the Prince of Wales, in bad weather, and was suffering from a bad toothache.

The first years of his reign saw little more than continuation and development of the policy pursued by Alexander III . Nicholas allotted money for the All- Russia
Russia
exhibition of 1896 . In 1897 restoration of gold standard by Sergei Witte
Sergei Witte
, Minister of Finance, completed the series of financial reforms, initiated fifteen years earlier. By 1902 the Trans-Siberian Railway was nearing completion; this helped the Russians
Russians
trade in the Far East but the railway still required huge amounts of work.

INITIATIVES IN FOREIGN AFFAIRS

In foreign relations, Nicholas followed the policies of his father, strengthening the Franco-Russian Alliance and pursuing a policy of general European pacification, which culminated in the famous Hague peace conference . This conference, suggested and promoted by Nicholas II, was convened with the view of terminating the arms race , and setting up machinery for the peaceful settlement of international disputes. The results of the conference were less than expected due to the mutual distrust existing between great powers. Nevertheless, the Hague conventions were among the first formal statements of the laws of war. In 1901 Nicholas II (and the famous Russian diplomat Friedrich Martens ) were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize
Nobel Peace Prize
—for the initiative to convene the Hague Peace Conference and contributing to its implementation.

ECCLESIASTICAL AFFAIRS

In 1903, Nicholas threw himself into an ecclesiastical crisis regarding the canonisation of Seraphim of Sarov . The previous year, it had been suggested that if he were canonised, the imperial couple would beget a son and heir to throne. While Alexandra demanded in July 1902 that Seraphim be canonised in less than a week, Nicholas demanded that he be canonised within a year. Despite a public outcry, the Church bowed to the intense imperial pressure, declaring Seraphim worthy of canonisation in January 1903. That summer, the imperial family travelled to Sarov for the canonisation.

RUSSO-JAPANESE WAR

Main article: Russo-Japanese War The Russian Baltic Fleet was annihilated by the Japanese at the Battle of Tsushima
Battle of Tsushima
.

A clash between Russia
Russia
and the Empire of Japan
Empire of Japan
was almost inevitable by the turn of the 20th century. Russia
Russia
had expanded in the Far East, and the growth of its settlement and territorial ambitions, as its southward path to the Balkans
Balkans
was frustrated, conflicted with Japan's own territorial ambitions on the Chinese and Asian mainland. Nicholas pursued an aggressive foreign policy with regards to Manchuria
Manchuria
and Korea
Korea
, and strongly supported the scheme for timber concessions in these areas as developed by the Bezobazov group .

War began in February 1904 with a preemptive Japanese attack on the Russian fleet in Port Arthur , prior to a formal declaration of war.

With the Russian Far East fleet trapped at Port Arthur, the only other Russian Fleet was the Baltic Fleet ; it was half a world away, but the decision was made to send the fleet on a nine-month voyage to the East. The United Kingdom
United Kingdom
would not allow the Russian navy to use the Suez Canal
Suez Canal
, due to its alliance with the Empire of Japan, and due to the Dogger Bank incident where the Baltic Fleet mistakenly fired on British fishing boats in the North Sea. The Russian Baltic Fleet traversed the world to lift the blockade on Port Arthur, but after many misadventures on the way, was nearly annihilated by the Japanese in the Battle of the Tsushima Strait . On land the Imperial Russian Army experienced logistical problems. While commands and supplies came from St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg
, combat took place in east Asian ports with only the Trans-Siberian Railway for transport of supplies as well as troops both ways. The 9,200-kilometre (5,700 mi) rail line between St. Petersburg and Port Arthur was single-track, with no track around Lake Baikal , allowing only gradual build-up of the forces on the front. Besieged Port Arthur fell to the Japanese, after nine months of resistance.

Nicholas's stance on the war was something that baffled many. He approached the war with confidence and saw it as an opportunity to raise Russian morale and patriotism, paying little attention to the financial repercussions of a long-distance war. Shortly before the Japanese attack on Port Arthur, Nicholas held firm to the belief that there would be no war. Despite the onset of the war and the many defeats Russia
Russia
suffered, Nicholas still believed in, and expected, a final victory, maintaining an image of the racial inferiority and military weakness of the Japanese.

As Russia
Russia
faced imminent defeat by the Japanese, the call for peace grew. Nicholas's own mother, as well as his cousin, Emperor
Emperor
Wilhelm II , urged Nicholas to open peace negotiations. Despite the efforts for peace, Nicholas remained evasive, sending a telegram to the Kaiser on 10 October that it was his intent to keep on fighting until the Japanese were driven from Manchuria. It was not until 27–28 May 1905 and the annihilation of the Russian fleet by the Japanese, that Nicholas finally decided to sue for peace. Nicholas II accepted American mediation, appointing Sergei Witte
Sergei Witte
chief plenipotentiary for the peace talks. The war was ended by the signing of the Treaty of Portsmouth .

ANTI-JEWISH POGROMS OF 1903–1906

Main article: Anti-Jewish pogroms in the Russian Empire
Russian Empire

The Kishinev newspaper Bessarabets, which published anti-Semitic materials, received funds from Viacheslav Plehve , Minister of the Interior. These publications served to fuel the Kishinev pogrom (rioting). The government of Nicholas II formally condemned the rioting and dismissed the regional governor, with the perpetrators arrested and punished by the court. Leadership of the Russian Orthodox Church also condemned anti-Semitic pogroms. Appeals to the faithful condemning the pogroms were read publicly in all churches of Russia. In private Nicholas expressed his admiration for the mobs, viewing anti-Semitism as a useful tool for unifying the people behind his regime; however in 1911 he approved of government efforts to prevent anti-Semitic pogroms following the assassination of Pyotr Stolypin by the Jewish revolutionary Dmitry Bogrov .

BLOODY SUNDAY (1905)

Main article: Bloody Sunday (1905) Play media Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas of Russia
Russia
mounts his horse (1905?), unknown cinematographer of the Edison Manufacturing Company

A few days prior to Bloody Sunday (9 (22) January 1905), the priest and labor leader Georgy Gapon informed the government of the forthcoming procession to the Winter Palace
Winter Palace
to hand a workers' petition to the Tsar. On Saturday, 8 (21) January, the ministers convened to consider the situation. There was never any thought that the Tsar, who had left the capital for Tsarskoye Selo on the advice of the ministers, would actually meet Gapon; the suggestion that some other member of the Imperial family receive the petition was rejected.

Finally informed by the Prefect of Police that he lacked the men to pluck Gapon from among his followers and place him under arrest, the newly appointed Minister of the Interior, Prince Sviatopolk-Mirsky , and his colleagues decided to bring additional troops to reinforce the city. That evening Nicholas wrote in his diary, "Troops have been brought from the outskirts to reinforce the garrison. Up to now the workers have been calm. Their number is estimated at 120,000. At the head of their union is a kind of socialist priest named Gapon. Mirsky came this evening to present his report on the measures taken."

On Sunday, 9 (22) January 1905, Gapon began his march. Locking arms, the workers marched peacefully through the streets. Some carried religious icons and banners, as well as national flags and portraits of the Tsar. As they walked, they sang hymns and the Imperial anthem, God Save The Tsar
Tsar
. At 2 PM all of the converging processions were scheduled to arrive at the Winter Palace. There was no single confrontation with the troops. Throughout the city, at bridges on strategic boulevards, the marchers found their way blocked by lines of infantry, backed by Cossacks
Cossacks
and Hussars; and the soldiers opened fire on the crowd.

The official number of victims was 92 dead and several hundred wounded. Gapon vanished and the other leaders of the march were seized. Expelled from the capital, they circulated through the empire, increasing the casualties. As bullets riddled their icons, their banners and their portraits of Nicholas, the people shrieked, "The Tsar
Tsar
will not help us!". Outside Russia, the future British Labour Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald
Ramsay MacDonald
attacked the Tsar, calling him a "blood-stained creature and a common murderer".

That evening Nicholas wrote in his diary:

Difficult day! In St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg
there were serious disturbances due to the desire of workers to get to the Winter Palace. The troops had to shoot in different places of the city, there were many dead and wounded. Lord, how painful and bad!

Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna (Nicholas's sister) wrote afterwards:

Nicky had the police report a few days before. That Saturday he telephoned my mother at the Anitchkov and said that she and I were to leave for Gatchina at once. He and Alicky went to Tsarskoye Selo. Insofar as I remember, my Uncles Vladimir and Nicholas were the only members of the family left in St. Petersburg, but there may have been others. I felt at the time that all those arrangements were hideously wrong. Nicky's ministers and the Chief of Police had it all their way. My mother and I wanted him to stay in St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg
and to face the crowd. I am positive that, for all the ugly mood of some of the workmen, Nicky's appearance would have calmed them. They would have presented their petition and gone back to their homes. But that wretched Epiphany incident had left all the senior officials in a state of panic. They kept on telling Nicky that he had no right to run such a risk, that he owed it to the country to leave the capital, that even with the utmost precautions taken there might always be some loophole left. My mother and I did all we could to persuade him that the ministers' advice was wrong, but Nicky preferred to follow it and he was the first to repent when he heard of the tragic outcome.

From his hiding place Gapon issued a letter, stating "Nicholas Romanov, formerly Tsar
Tsar
and at present soul-murderer of the Russian empire. The innocent blood of workers, their wives and children lies forever between you and the Russian people ... May all the blood which must be spilled fall upon you, you Hangman. I call upon all the socialist parties of Russia
Russia
to come to an immediate agreement among themselves and bring an armed uprising against Tsarism ."

1905 REVOLUTION

Main article: 1905 Russian Revolution

Confronted with growing opposition and after consulting with Witte and Prince Sviatopolk-Mirsky , the Tsar
Tsar
issued a reform ukase on December 25, 1904 with vague promises. In hopes of cutting short the rebellion, many demonstrators were shot on Bloody Sunday (1905) as they tried to march to the Winter Palace
Winter Palace
in St. Petersburg. Dmitri Feodorovich Trepov was ordered to take drastic measures to stop the revolutionary activity. Grand Duke Sergei was killed in February by a revolutionary's bomb in Moscow as he left the Kremlin. On 3 March the Tsar
Tsar
condemned the revolutionaries. Meanwhile, Witte recommended that a manifesto be issued. Schemes of reform would be elaborated by Goremykin and a committee consisting of elected representatives of the zemstvos and municipal councils under the presidency of Witte. In June the battleship Potemkin , part of the Black Sea Fleet , mutinied .

Around August/September, after his diplomatic success on ending the Russo-Japanese War , Witte wrote to the Tsar
Tsar
stressing the urgent need for political reforms at home. The Tsar
Tsar
remained quiet impassive and indulgent; he spent most of that autumn hunting. With the defeat of Russia
Russia
by a non-Western power, the prestige and authority of the autocratic regime fell significantly. Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas II, taken by surprise by the events, reacted with anger and bewilderment. He wrote to his mother after months of disorder:

It makes me sick to read the news! Nothing but strikes in schools and factories, murdered policemen, Cossacks
Cossacks
and soldiers, riots, disorder, mutinies. But the ministers, instead of acting with quick decision, only assemble in council like a lot of frightened hens and cackle about providing united ministerial action... ominous quiet days began, quiet indeed because there was complete order in the streets, but at the same time everybody knew that something was going to happen — the troops were waiting for the signal, but the other side would not begin. One had the same feeling, as before a thunderstorm in summer! Everybody was on edge and extremely nervous and of course, that sort of strain could not go on for long.... We are in the midst of a revolution with an administrative apparatus entirely disorganized, and in this lies the main danger.

In October a railway strike developed into a general strike which paralysed the country. In a city without electricity, Witte told Nicholas II, "that the country was at the verge of a cataclysmic revolution". According to Orlando Figes the Tsar
Tsar
asked his uncle Grand Duke Nicholas to assume the role of dictator. "But the Grand Duke ... took out a revolver and threatened to shoot himself there and then if the Tsar
Tsar
refused to endorse Witte's memorandum." Nicholas II had no choice but to make a number of steps in the constitutional liberal direction. The Tsar
Tsar
accepted the draft, hurriedly outlined by Aleksei D. Obolensky . The Emperor
Emperor
and Autocrat of All the Russias was forced to sign the October Manifesto
October Manifesto
, to agree with the establishment of the Imperial Duma , and give up part of his unlimited autocracy . For the next six months, Witte was the Prime Minister . According to Harold Williams : "That government was almost paralyzed from the beginning. On 26 October (O.S.) the Tsar
Tsar
appointed Trepov Master of the Palace (without consulting Witte), and had daily contact with the Emperor; his influence at court was paramount. On 1 November 1905, (O.S.) Princess Milica of Montenegro presented Grigori Rasputin
Grigori Rasputin
to Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas and his wife at Peterhof Palace .

RELATIONSHIP WITH THE DUMA

One ruble silver Coin of Emperor
Emperor
Nicholas II, dated 1898, with the Imperial coat-of-arms on the reverse. The Russian inscription reads: B M Nikolay Imperator i Samoderzhets Vse Ross.. The English translation is, "By the grace of God, Nicholas II, Emperor
Emperor
and Autocrat of All the Russias."

Under pressure from the attempted 1905 Russian Revolution , on 5 August of that year Nicholas II issued a manifesto about the convocation of the State Duma , known as the Bulygin Duma , initially thought to be an advisory organ. In the October Manifesto
October Manifesto
, the Tsar pledged to introduce basic civil liberties , provide for broad participation in the State Duma, and endow the Duma with legislative and oversight powers. He was determined, however, to preserve his autocracy even in the context of reform. This was signalled in the text of the 1906 constitution . He was described as the supreme autocrat, and retained sweeping executive powers, also in church affairs. His cabinet ministers were not allowed to interfere or assist each other; they were responsible only to him.

Nicholas's relations with the Duma were poor. The First Duma , with a majority of Kadets , almost immediately came into conflict with him. Scarcely had the 524 members sat down at the Tauride Palace
Tauride Palace
when they formulated an 'Address to the Throne'. It demanded universal suffrage , radical land reform, the release of all political prisoners and the dismissal of ministers appointed by the Tsar
Tsar
in favour of ministers acceptable to the Duma.

Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna, the younger sister of Nicholas II, wrote, "There was such gloom at Tsarskoye Selo. I did not understand anything about politics. I just felt everything was going wrong with the country and all of us. The October Constitution did not seem to satisfy anyone. I went with my mother to the first Duma. I remember the large group of deputies from among peasants and factory people. The peasants looked sullen. But the workmen were worse: they looked as though they hated us. I remember the distress in Alicky 's eyes."

Minister of the Court Count Vladimir Frederiks commented, "The Deputies, they give one the impression of a gang of criminals who are only waiting for the signal to throw themselves upon the ministers and cut their throats. I will never again set foot among those people." The Dowager Empress
Empress
noticed "incomprehensible hatred."

Although Nicholas initially had a good relationship with his prime minister, Sergei Witte
Sergei Witte
, Alexandra distrusted him as he had instigated an investigation of Grigori Rasputin
Grigori Rasputin
and, as the political situation deteriorated, Nicholas dissolved the Duma. The Duma was populated with radicals , many of whom wished to push through legislation that would abolish private property ownership, among other things. Witte, unable to grasp the seemingly insurmountable problems of reforming Russia
Russia
and the monarchy, wrote to Nicholas on 14 April 1906 resigning his office (however, other accounts have said that Witte was forced to resign by the Emperor). Nicholas was not ungracious to Witte and an Imperial Rescript was published on 22 April creating Witte a Knight of the Order of Saint Alexander Nevsky with diamonds (the last two words were written in the Emperor's own hand, followed by "I remain unalterably well-disposed to you and sincerely grateful, for ever more Nicholas.").

A second Duma met for the first time in February 1907. The leftist parties—including the Social Democrats and the Social Revolutionaries, who had boycotted the First Duma—had won 200 seats in the Second, more than a third of the membership. Again Nicholas waited impatiently to rid himself of the Duma. In two letters to his mother he let his bitterness flow, "A grotesque deputation is coming from England to see liberal members of the Duma. Uncle Bertie informed us that they were very sorry but were unable to take action to stop their coming. Their famous 'liberty', of course. How angry they would be if a deputation went from us to the Irish to wish them success in their struggle against their government."

A little while later Nicholas wrote, "All would be well if everything said in the Duma remained within its walls. Every word spoken, however, comes out in the next day's papers which are avidly read by everyone. In many places the populace is getting restive again. They begin to talk about land once more and are waiting to see what the Duma is going to say on the question. I am getting telegrams from everywhere, petitioning me to order a dissolution, but it is too early for that. One has to let them do something manifestly stupid or mean and then — slap! And they are gone!" Nicholas II, Stolypin and Jewish delegation during the Tsar's visit to Kiev
Kiev
in 1911

After the Second Duma resulted in similar problems, the new prime minister Pyotr Stolypin (whom Witte described as "reactionary") unilaterally dissolved it, and changed the electoral laws to allow for future Dumas to have a more conservative content, and to be dominated by the liberal-conservative Octobrist Party of Alexander Guchkov . Stolypin, a skilful politician, had ambitious plans for reform. These included making loans available to the lower classes to enable them to buy land, with the intent of forming a farming class loyal to the crown. Nevertheless, when the Duma remained hostile, Stolypin had no qualms about invoking Article 87 of the Fundamental Laws , which empowered the Tsar
Tsar
to issue 'urgent and extraordinary' emergency decrees 'during the recess of the State Duma'. Stolypin's most famous legislative act, the change in peasant land tenure, was promulgated under Article 87.

The third Duma remained an independent body. This time the members proceeded cautiously. Instead of hurling themselves at the government, opposing parties within the Duma worked to develop the body as a whole. In the classic manner of the British Parliament, the Duma reached for power grasping for the national purse strings. The Duma had the right to question ministers behind closed doors as to their proposed expenditures. These sessions, endorsed by Stolypin, were educational for both sides, and, in time, mutual antagonism was replaced by mutual respect. Even the sensitive area of military expenditure, where the October Manifesto
October Manifesto
clearly had reserved decisions to the throne, a Duma commission began to operate. Composed of aggressive patriots no less anxious than Nicholas to restore the fallen honour of Russian arms, the Duma commission frequently recommended expenditures even larger than those proposed.

With the passage of time, Nicholas also began to have confidence in the Duma. "This Duma cannot be reproached with an attempt to seize power and there is no need at all to quarrel with it," he said to Stolypin in 1909. Unfortunately, Stolypin's plans were undercut by conservatives at court. Reactionaries such as Prince Vladimir Nikolayevich Orlov never tired of telling the Tsar
Tsar
that the very existence of the Duma was a blot on the autocracy, which Tsaritsa Alexandra had always believed anyway. Stolypin, they whispered, was a traitor and secret revolutionary who was conniving with the Duma to steal the prerogatives assigned the Tsar
Tsar
by God. Witte also engaged in constant intrigue against Stolypin. Although Stolypin had had nothing to do with Witte's fall, Witte blamed him. Stolypin had unwittingly angered the Tsaritsa. He had ordered an investigation into Rasputin and presented it to the Tsar, who read it but did nothing. Stolypin, on his own authority, ordered Rasputin
Rasputin
to leave St. Petersburg. Alexandra protested vehemently but Nicholas refused to overrule his Prime Minister, who had more influence with the Emperor.

By the time of Stolypin's assassination by Dmitry Bogrov , a student (and police informant) in a theatre in Kiev
Kiev
on 18 September 1911, Stolypin had grown weary of the burdens of office. For a man who preferred clear decisive action, working with a sovereign who believed in fatalism and mysticism was frustrating. As an example, Nicholas once returned a document unsigned with the note: "Despite most convincing arguments in favour of adopting a positive decision in this matter, an inner voice keeps on insisting more and more that I do not accept responsibility for it. So far my conscience has not deceived me. Therefore I intend in this case to follow its dictates. I know that you, too, believe that 'a Tsar's heart is in God's hands.' Let it be so. For all laws established by me I bear a great responsibility before God, and I am ready to answer for my decision at any time."

Alexandra, believing that Stolypin had severed the bonds that her son depended on for life, hated the Prime Minister. In March 1911, in a fit of anger stating that he no longer commanded the imperial confidence, Stolypin asked to be relieved of his office. Two years earlier when Stolypin had casually mentioned resigning to Nicholas he was informed:

This is not a question of confidence or lack of it. It is my will. Remember that we live in Russia, not abroad...and therefore I shall not consider the possibility of any resignation.

It never got that far. On 18 September 1911, in a procession where Stolypin's car was unprotected, Rasputin
Rasputin
had coincidentally returned from his exile. As Stolypin's car passed him, Rasputin
Rasputin
cried out in a loud voice, "Death is after him! Death is driving behind him!" Bogrov would later assassinate Stolypin in the Kiev
Kiev
theatre that night.

In 1912, a fourth Duma was elected with almost the same membership as the third. "The Duma started too fast. Now it is slower, but better, and more lasting," stated Nicholas to Sir Bernard Pares .

The First World War
First World War
developed badly for Russia. By late 1916, Romanov family desperation reached the point that Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich , younger brother of Alexander III and the Tsar's only surviving uncle, was deputed to beg Nicholas to grant a constitution and a government responsible to the Duma. Nicholas sternly and adamantly refused, reproaching his uncle for asking him to break his coronation oath to maintain autocratic power for his successors. In the Duma on 2 December 1916, Vladimir Purishkevich, a fervent patriot, monarchist and war worker, denounced the dark forces which surrounded the throne in a thunderous two-hour speech which was tumultuously applauded. "Revolution threatens," he warned, "and an obscure peasant shall govern Russia
Russia
no longer!"

TSAREVICH ALEXEI\'S ILLNESS AND RASPUTIN

Tsarevich Alexei Nikolaevich , c. 1913 Grigori Rasputin
Grigori Rasputin

Further complicating domestic matters was the matter of the succession. Alexandra bore Nicholas four daughters, the Grand Duchess Olga in 1895, the Grand Duchess Tatiana in 1897, Grand Duchess Maria in 1899, and Grand Duchess Anastasia
Anastasia
in 1901, before their son Alexei was born on 12 August 1904. The young heir was afflicted with Haemophilia B , a hereditary disease that prevents blood from clotting properly, which at that time was untreatable and usually led to an untimely death. As a granddaughter of Queen Victoria, Alexandra carried the same gene mutation that afflicted several of the major European royal houses, such as Prussia
Prussia
and Spain. Hemophilia therefore became known as "the royal disease ". Through Alexandra the disease had passed on to her son. As all of Nicholas and Alexandra's daughters perished with their parents and brother in Yekaterinburg in 1918, it is not known whether any of them inherited the gene as carriers .

Because of the fragility of the autocracy at this time, Nicholas and Alexandra chose not to divulge Alexei's condition to anyone outside the imperial household. In fact, there were many in the household who were unaware of the exact nature of the Tsarevich's illness. At first Alexandra turned to Russian doctors and medics to treat Alexei; however, their treatments generally failed, and Alexandra increasingly turned to mystics and holy men (or starets as they were called in Russian). One of these starets, an illiterate Siberian named Grigori Rasputin
Rasputin
, appeared to have some success. Rasputin's influence over Empress
Empress
Alexandra, and consequently the Tsar
Tsar
himself, had grown stronger ever since 1912, when the Tsarevich nearly died from an injury while the family was on vacation at the hunting lodges at Białowieża and Spała
Spała
( Poland
Poland
). The bleeding grew steadily worse until it was assumed that the Tsarevich would not survive, and the Last Sacrament was administered on 10 October 1912. In desperation Alexandra called upon Rasputin
Rasputin
as a last resort, to which he replied, "God has seen your tears and heard your prayers. Do not grieve. The Little One will not die. Do not allow the doctors to bother him too much." The haemorrhage stopped the very next day and the boy began to recover. Alexandra took this as a sign that Rasputin
Rasputin
was a starets and that God was with him; for the rest of her life she would fervently defend him and turn her wrath against anyone who dared to question him.

EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

Nicholas II and his son Alexei aboard the Imperial yacht Standart during King Edward VII
Edward VII
's state visit to Russia
Russia
in Tallin , 1908

In 1907, to counter perceived German aggression, Russia
Russia
and Great Britain signed the Anglo-Russian Convention . Great Britain had already entered into the Entente cordiale with France
France
in 1904, and the Anglo-Russian convention led to the formation of the Triple Entente
Triple Entente
. The following year, in May 1908, Nicholas and Alexandra's shared "Uncle Bertie" and "Aunt Alix," Britain's King Edward VII
Edward VII
and Queen Alexandra made a state visit to Russia, being the first reigning British monarchs to do so. However, they did not set foot on Russian soil. Instead, they stayed aboard their yachts, meeting off the coast of modern-day Tallinn
Tallinn
. Later that year, Nicholas was taken off guard by the news that his foreign minister, Alexander Izvolsky had entered into a secret agreement with the Austro-Hungarian foreign minister, Count Alois von Aehrenthal , agreeing that, in exchange for Russian naval access to the Dardanelles and the Bosporus Strait , Russia
Russia
would not oppose the Austrian annexation of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
, a revision of the 1878 Treaty of Berlin
Berlin
. When Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary
did annex this territory that October, it precipitated the diplomatic crisis . When Russia
Russia
protested about the annexation, the Austrians threatened to leak secret communications between Izvolsky and Aehernthal, prompting Nicholas to complain in a letter to the Austrian emperor, Franz Joseph , about a breach of confidence. In 1909, in the wake of the Anglo-Russian convention, the Russian imperial family made a visit to England, staying on the Isle of Wight
Isle of Wight
for Cowes Week . In 1913, during the Balkan Wars , Nicholas personally offered to arbitrate between Serbia
Serbia
and Bulgaria. However, the Bulgarians rejected his offer. Also in 1913, Nicholas, albeit without Alexandra, made a visit to Berlin
Berlin
for the wedding of Kaiser Wilhelm II's daughter, Princess Victoria Louise , to a maternal cousin of Nicholas, Ernest Augustus, the Duke of Brunswick . Nicholas was also joined by his cousin, King George V
George V
and his wife, Queen Mary .

THE TERCENTENARY

Main article: Romanov Tercentenary

In February 1913, Nicholas presided over the tercentenary celebrations for the Romanov Dynasty
Dynasty
. On 21 February, a Te Deum
Te Deum
took place at Kazan
Kazan
Cathedral, and a state reception at the Winter Palace. In May, Nicholas and the imperial family made a pilgrimage across the empire, retracing the route down the Volga River
Volga River
that was made by the teenage Michael Romanov from the Ipatiev Monastery in Kostroma
Kostroma
to Moscow in 1613 when he finally agreed to become tsar.

FIRST WORLD WAR

On 28 June 1914 Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria , heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, was assassinated by Gavrilo Princip in Sarajevo
Sarajevo
. Nicholas vacillated as to Russia's course of action. The outbreak of war was not inevitable, but leaders, diplomats and nineteenth-century alliances created a climate for large-scale conflict. The concept of Pan-Slavism
Pan-Slavism
and shared ethnicity created strong public sympathy between Russia
Russia
and Serbia. Territorial conflict created rivalries between Germany and France
France
and between Austria and Serbia
Serbia
, and as a consequence alliance networks developed across Europe. The Triple Entente
Triple Entente
and Triple Alliance networks were set before the war. Nicholas wanted neither to abandon Serbia
Serbia
to the ultimatum of Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary
, nor to provoke a general war. In a series of letters exchanged with Kaiser Wilhelm of Germany (the so-called " Willy and Nicky correspondence") the two proclaimed their desire for peace, and each attempted to get the other to back down. Nicholas desired that Russia's mobilization be only against the Austrian border, in the hopes of preventing war with the German Empire . Nicholas II (right) with Kaiser Wilhelm II
Kaiser Wilhelm II
of Germany in 1905. Nicholas is wearing a German Army uniform, while Wilhelm wears that of a Russian hussar regiment.

On 25 July 1914, the council of ministers was held in Krasnoye Selo at which Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas II decided to intervene in the Austro-Serbian conflict, a step toward general war. He put the Russian army on "alert" on 25 July. Although this was not general mobilization, it threatened the German and Austrian borders and looked like military preparation for war. However, his army had no contingency plans for a partial mobilization, and on 30 July 1914 Nicholas took the fateful step of confirming the order for general mobilization, despite being strongly counselled against it.

On 28 July, Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary
formally declared war against Serbia. On 29 July 1914, Nicholas II sent a telegram to Wilhelm II (The Willy-Nicky Correspondence ), with the suggestion to submit the Austro-Serbian problem to the Hague Conference (in Hague tribunal ). Wilhelm II did not address the question of the Hague Conference in his subsequent reply. Count Witte told the French Ambassador, Maurice Paléologue that from Russia's point of view the war was madness, Slav solidarity was simply nonsense and Russia
Russia
could hope for nothing from the war. On 30 July, Russia
Russia
ordered general mobilisation, but still maintained that it would not attack if peace talks were to begin. Germany, reacting to the discovery of Russian partial mobilisation ordered on 25 July, announced its own pre-mobilisation posture, the Imminent Danger of War. Germany requested that Russia
Russia
must demobilise within the next twelve hours. In Saint Petersburg , at 7pm, with the ultimatum to Russia
Russia
expired, the German ambassador to Russia
Russia
met with the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Sazonov
Sergey Sazonov
, asked three times if Russia
Russia
would reconsider, and then with shaking hands, delivered the note accepting Russia's war challenge and declaring war on 1 August. Less than a week later, on 6 August, Franz Joseph I of Austria signed the Austro Hungarian declaration of war on Russia.

The outbreak of war on 1 August 1914 found Russia
Russia
grossly unprepared. Russia
Russia
and her allies placed their faith in her army, the famous 'Russian steamroller'. Its pre-war regular strength was 1,400,000; mobilisation added 3,100,000 reserves and millions more stood ready behind them. In every other respect, however, Russia
Russia
was unprepared for war. Germany had ten times as much railway track per square mile, and whereas Russian soldiers travelled an average of 1,290 kilometres (800 mi) to reach the front, German soldiers travelled less than a quarter of that distance. Russian heavy industry was still too small to equip the massive armies the Tsar
Tsar
could raise, and her reserves of munitions were pitifully small; while the German army in 1914 was better equipped than any other, man-for-man, the Russians
Russians
were severely short on artillery pieces, shells, motorised transports, and even boots. With the Baltic Sea barred by German U-boats and the Dardanelles by the guns of Germany's ally, Turkey
Turkey
, Russia
Russia
initially could receive help only via Archangel , which was frozen solid in winter, or via Vladivostok
Vladivostok
, which was over 6,400 kilometres (4,000 mi) from the front line. By 1915, a rail line was built north from Petrozavodsk
Petrozavodsk
to the Kola Gulf and this connection laid the foundation of the ice-free port of what eventually was called Murmansk
Murmansk
. The Russian High Command was moreover greatly weakened by the mutual contempt between Vladimir Sukhomlinov , the Minister of War, and the redoubtable warrior giant Grand Duke Nicholas Nikolayevich who commanded the armies in the field. In spite of all of this, an immediate attack was ordered against the German province of East Prussia
Prussia
. The Germans mobilised there with great efficiency and completely defeated the two Russian armies which had invaded. The Battle of Tannenberg , where an entire Russian army was annihilated, cast an ominous shadow over the empire's future. The loyal officers lost were the very ones needed to protect the dynasty. The Russian armies had great success against both the Austro-Hungarian armies and against the forces of the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
from the very beginning of the war, but they never succeeded against the might of the German Army. In September 1914, in order to relieve pressure on France, the Russians
Russians
were forced to halt a successful offensive against Austro- Hungary
Hungary
in Galicia in order to attack German-held Silesia. Russian prisoners at the Battle of Tannenberg , where the Russian Second Army was annihilated by German forces

Gradually a war of attrition set in on the vast Eastern Front , where the Russians
Russians
were facing the combined forces of the German and Austro-Hungarian Empires, and they suffered staggering losses. General Denikin, retreating from Galicia wrote, "The German heavy artillery swept away whole lines of trenches, and their defenders with them. We hardly replied. There was nothing with which we could reply. Our regiments, although completely exhausted, were beating off one attack after another by bayonet ... Blood flowed unendingly, the ranks became thinner and thinner and thinner. The number of graves multiplied." Total losses for the spring and summer of 1915 amounted to 1,400,000 killed or wounded, while 976,000 had been taken prisoner. On 5 August, with the Russian army in retreat, Warsaw
Warsaw
fell. Defeat at the front bred disorder at home. At first, the targets were German, and for three days in June shops, bakeries, factories, private houses and country estates belonging to people with German names were looted and burned. The inflamed mobs then turned on the government, declaring the Empress
Empress
should be shut up in a convent, the Tsar
Tsar
deposed and Rasputin hanged. Nicholas was by no means deaf to these discontents. An emergency session of the Duma was summoned, and a Special
Special
Defense Council established, its members drawn from the Duma and the Tsar's ministers.

In July 1915, King Christian X of Denmark , first cousin of the Tsar, sent Hans Niels Andersen to Tsarskoye Selo with an offer to act as a mediator. He made several trips between London, Berlin
Berlin
and Petrograd and in July saw the Dowager Empress
Empress
Maria Fyodorovna . Andersen told her they should conclude peace. Nicholas chose to turn down King Christian's offer of mediation, as he felt it would be a betrayal for Russia
Russia
to form a separate peace treaty with the Central Powers when its allies Britain and France
France
were still fighting.

The energetic and efficient General Alexei Polivanov replaced Sukhomlinov as Minister of War , which failed to improve the strategic situation. In the aftermath of the Great Retreat and the loss of the Kingdom of Poland
Poland
, Nicholas assumed the role of commander-in-chief after dismissing his cousin, Nikolay Nikolayevich , in September 1915. This was a mistake, as the Tsar
Tsar
came to be personally associated with the continuing losses at the front. He was also away at the remote HQ at Mogilev
Mogilev
, far from the direct governance of the empire, and when revolution broke out in Petrograd he was unable to halt it. In reality the move was largely symbolic, since all important military decisions were made by his chief-of-staff General Michael Alexeiev , and Nicholas did little more than review troops, inspect field hospitals , and preside over military luncheons. Nicholas II with his family in Yevpatoria
Yevpatoria
, Crimea
Crimea
, May 1916

The Duma was still calling for political reforms and political unrest continued throughout the war. Cut off from public opinion, Nicholas could not see that the dynasty was tottering. With Nicholas at the front, domestic issues and control of the capital were left with his wife Alexandra. However, Alexandra's relationship with Grigori Rasputin
Rasputin
, and her German background, further discredited the dynasty's authority. Nicholas had been repeatedly warned about the destructive influence of Rasputin
Rasputin
but had failed to remove him. Rumors and accusations about Alexandra and Rasputin
Rasputin
appeared one after another; Alexandra was even accused of harboring treasonous sympathies towards Germany. Anger at Nicholas's failure to act and the extreme damage that Rasputin's influence was doing to Russia's war effort and to the monarchy led to Rasputin's eventual murder by a group of nobles, led by Prince Felix Yusupov
Felix Yusupov
and Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich , a cousin of the Tsar, in the early morning of Saturday 17 December 1916 (O.S. ) / 30 December 1916 (N.S. ).

COLLAPSE

As the government failed to produce supplies, mounting hardship created massive riots and rebellions. With Nicholas away at the front from 1915 through 1916, authority appeared to collapse and the capital was left in the hands of strikers and mutineering conscript soldiers. Despite efforts by the British Ambassador Sir George Buchanan to warn the Tsar
Tsar
that he should grant constitutional reforms to fend off revolution, Nicholas continued to bury himself away at the Staff HQ ( Stavka ) 600 kilometres (400 mi) away at Moghilev , leaving his capital and court open to intrigues and insurrection.

By early 1917, Russia
Russia
was on the verge of total and utter collapse. The army had taken 15 million men from the farms and food prices had soared. An egg cost four times what it had in 1914, butter five times as much. The severe winter dealt the railways, overburdened by emergency shipments of coal and supplies, the final blow.

Russia
Russia
began the war with 20,000 locomotives ; by 1917, 9,000 were in service, while the number of serviceable railway wagons had dwindled from half a million to 170,000. In February 1917, 1,200 locomotives burst their boilers and nearly 60,000 wagons were immobilised. In Petrograd, supplies of flour and fuel had all but disappeared. War-time prohibition of alcohol was enacted by Nicholas to boost patriotism and productivity, but instead damaged the treasury and funding of the war due to the treasury now being deprived of alcohol taxes. One of the last photographs of Nicholas II, showing him at Tsarskoye Selo after his abdication in March 1917

On 23 February 1917 in Petrograd, a combination of very severe cold weather and acute food shortages caused people to start to break shop windows to get bread and other necessities. In the streets, red banners appeared and the crowds chanted "Down with the German woman! Down with Protopopov ! Down with the war! Down with the Tsar!"

Police started to shoot at the populace from rooftops, which incited riots. The troops in the capital were poorly motivated and their officers had no reason to be loyal to the regime. They were angry and full of revolutionary fervor and sided with the populace.

The Tsar's Cabinet begged Nicholas to return to the capital and offered to resign completely. 800 kilometres (500 mi) away the Tsar, misinformed by the Minister of the Interior, Alexander Protopopov , that the situation was under control, ordered that firm steps be taken against the demonstrators. For this task, the Petrograd garrison was quite unsuitable. The cream of the old regular army had been destroyed in Poland
Poland
and Galicia. In Petrograd, 170,000 recruits, country boys or older men from the working-class suburbs of the capital itself, remained to keep control under the command of wounded officers invalided from the front and cadets from the military academies. The units in the capital, although many bore the names of famous Imperial Guard regiments, were in reality rear or reserve battalions of these regiments, the regular units being away at the front. Many units, lacking both officers and rifles, had never undergone formal training.

General Khabalov attempted to put the Tsar's instructions into effect on the morning of Sunday, 11 March 1917. Despite huge posters ordering people to keep off the streets, vast crowds gathered and were only dispersed after some 200 had been shot dead, though a company of the Volinsky Regiment fired into the air rather than into the mob and a company of the Pavlovsky Life Guards shot the officer who gave the command to open fire. Nicholas, informed of the situation by Rodzianko, ordered reinforcements to the capital and suspended the Duma. It was too late.

On 12 March, the Volinsky Regiment mutinied and was quickly followed by the Semenovsky , the Ismailovsky , the Litovsky and even the legendary Preobrazhensky Regiment of the Imperial Guard, the oldest and staunchest regiment founded by Peter the Great . The arsenal was pillaged, the Ministry of the Interior, Military Government building, police headquarters, the Law Courts and a score of police buildings were put to the torch. By noon, the fortress of Peter and Paul, with its heavy artillery, was in the hands of the insurgents. By nightfall, 60,000 soldiers had joined the revolution.

Order broke down and members of the Duma and the Soviet formed a Provisional Government to try to restore order. They issued a demand that Nicholas must abdicate. Faced with this demand, which was echoed by his generals, deprived of loyal troops, with his family firmly in the hands of the Provisional Government and fearful of unleashing civil war and opening the way for German conquest, Nicholas had little choice but to submit.

Abdication (1917)

At the end of the " February Revolution
February Revolution
" of 1917 (February in the Old Russian Calendar), on 2 March (O.S. ) / 15 March (N.S. ) 1917, Nicholas II chose to abdicate . He first abdicated in favour of Alexei, but a few hours later changed his mind after advice from doctors that the Tsarevich would not live long separated from his parents, who would be forced into exile. Nicholas thus abdicated on behalf of his son, and drew up a new manifesto naming his brother, Grand Duke Michael, as the next Emperor
Emperor
of all the Russias. He issued the following statement (which was suppressed by the Provisional Government):

In the days of the great struggle against the foreign enemies, who for nearly three years have tried to enslave our fatherland, the Lord God has been pleased to send down on Russia
Russia
a new heavy trial. Internal popular disturbances threaten to have a disastrous effect on the future conduct of this persistent war. The destiny of Russia, the honor of our heroic army, the welfare of the people and the whole future of our dear fatherland demand that the war should be brought to a victorious conclusion whatever the cost. The cruel enemy is making his last efforts, and already the hour approaches when our glorious army together with our gallant allies will crush him. In these decisive days in the life of Russia, We thought it Our duty of conscience to facilitate for Our people the closest union possible and a consolidation of all national forces for the speedy attainment of victory. In agreement with the Imperial Duma We have thought it well to renounce the Throne of the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
and to lay down the supreme power. As We do not wish to part from Our beloved son, We transmit the succession to Our brother, the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich, and give Him Our blessing to mount the Throne of the Russian Empire. We direct Our brother to conduct the affairs of state in full and inviolable union with the representatives of the people in the legislative bodies on those principles which will be established by them, and on which He will take an inviolable oath. In the name of Our dearly beloved homeland, We call on Our faithful sons of the fatherland to fulfill their sacred duty to the fatherland, to obey the Tsar
Tsar
in the heavy moment of national trials, and to help Him, together with the representatives of the people, to guide the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
on the road to victory, welfare, and glory. May the Lord God help Russia!

Grand Duke Michael declined to accept the throne until the people were allowed to vote through a Constituent Assembly for the continuance of the monarchy or a republic. The abdication of Nicholas II and the subsequent Bolshevik revolution brought three centuries of the Romanov dynasty's rule to an end. The fall of autocratic Tsardom brought joy to Liberals and Socialists in Britain and France. The United States of America was the first foreign government to recognise the Provisional government. In Russia, the announcement of the Tsar's abdication was greeted with many emotions. These included delight, relief, fear, anger and confusion.

It is debatable whether Nicholas's enforced abdication was actually legal, and whether he had the right to abdicate on behalf of his son. As Nicholas had already abdicated he was therefore merely a subject of his son, and only Grand Duke Michael as Regent had the right to change the succession. Some historians contend that Nicholas remained the Tsar, at least in theory, until his death.

IMPRISONMENT

The Governor's Mansion in Tobolsk
Tobolsk
, where the Romanov family was held in captivity between August 1917 and April 1918

Nicholas desperately wanted to go into exile in the United Kingdom following his abdication. The British government reluctantly offered the family asylum in the UK on 19 March 1917, although it was suggested that it would be better for the Romanovs to go to a neutral country. News of the offer provoked uproar from the Labour Party and many Liberals, and the British ambassador Sir George Buchanan advised the government that the extreme left would use the ex-Tsar's presence "as an excuse for rousing public opinion against us". The offer of asylum was withdrawn in April following objections by King George V who, acting on the advice of his secretary Arthur Bigge, 1st Baron Stamfordham , was worried that Nicholas's presence in the UK might provoke an uprising like the previous year's Easter Rising
Easter Rising
in Ireland. The French government declined to accept the Romanovs in view of increasing unrest on the Western Front and on the home front as a result of the ongoing war with Germany. The British ambassador in Paris, Lord Francis Bertie , advised the Foreign Secretary that the Romanovs would be unwelcome in France
France
as the ex- Empress
Empress
was regarded as pro-German.

In the early summer of 1917, after an improvement in the internal political situation in Russia, the Russian government approached the UK government on the issue of asylum and was informed the offer had been withdrawn due to the considerations of British internal politics. In August, the Kerensky government evacuated the Romanovs to Tobolsk in the Urals as a winter refuge to protect them from the rising tide of revolution, until the family could be sent abroad in the spring of 1918 via Japan. There they lived in the former Governor's Mansion in considerable comfort. In October 1917, however, the Bolsheviks seized power from Kerensky's Provisional Government; Nicholas followed the events in October with interest but not yet with alarm. Boris Soloviev , the husband of Maria Rasputin , was supposedly organizing rescue attempts with monarchical factions, but none occurred. Rumors persist that Soloviev was working for the Bolsheviks or the Germans, or both.

Nicholas continued to underestimate Lenin's importance. In the meantime he and his family occupied themselves with keeping warm. Conditions of imprisonment became more strict, and talk of putting Nicholas on trial grew more frequent. The Tsar
Tsar
was forbidden to wear epaulettes .

On 1 March 1918, the family was placed on soldier's rations, which meant parting with ten devoted servants and giving up butter and coffee as luxuries. Nicholas and Alexandra
Nicholas and Alexandra
were appalled by news of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk , whereby Russia
Russia
agreed to give up Poland, Finland, the Baltic States, the Ukraine, the Crimea
Crimea
and most of the Caucasus. What kept the family's spirits up was the belief that help was at hand. The Romanovs believed that various plots were underway to break them out of captivity and smuggle them to safety. The Western Allies lost interest in the fate of the Romanovs after Russia
Russia
left the war. The German government wanted the monarchy restored in Russia
Russia
to crush the Bolsheviks and maintain good relations with the Central Powers. But on 30 April 1918 the Romanovs were transferred to their final destination: the town of Yekaterinburg , where they were imprisoned in the two-storey Ipatiev House , the home of the military engineer Nikolay Nikolayevich Ipatiev, which ominously became referred to as the "house of special purpose". Russian Imperial family (between circa 1913 and circa 1914)

EXECUTION

See also: Execution of the Romanov family

There are several accounts of what happened and historians have not agreed on a solid, confirmed scope of events. According to the account of Yurovsky (the chief executioner), in the early hours of 17 July 1918, the royal family was awakened around 2:00 am, got dressed, and were led down into a half-basement room at the back of the Ipatiev house. The pretext for this move was the family's safety, i.e. that anti- Bolshevik forces were approaching Yekaterinburg, and the house might be fired upon.

Present with Nicholas, Alexandra and their children were their doctor and three of their servants, who had voluntarily chosen to remain with the family: the Tsar's personal physician Eugene Botkin , his wife's maid Anna Demidova , and the family's chef, Ivan Kharitonov , and footman, Alexei Trupp . A firing squad had been assembled and was waiting in an adjoining room, composed of seven Communist soldiers from Central Europe, and three local Bolsheviks, all under the command of Bolshevik officer Yakov Yurovsky .

Nicholas was carrying his son; when the family arrived in the basement, the former empress complained that there were no chairs for them to sit on. Yurovsky ordered two chairs brought in, and when the empress and the heir were seated, the executioners filed into the room. Yurovsky announced to them that they had been condemned to death by the Ural Soviet of Workers' Deputies. A stunned Nicholas asked, "What? What?" and turned toward his family. Yurovsky quickly repeated the order and shot the former emperor outright.

The executioners drew handguns and the shooting began. Nicholas was the first to die; Yurovsky shot him several times in the chest (sometimes incorrectly said to have been in his head, but his skull bore no bullet wounds when it was discovered in 1991). Anastasia, Tatiana, Olga, and Maria survived the first hail of bullets; the sisters were wearing over 1.3 kilograms of diamonds and precious gems sewn into their clothing, which provided some initial protection from the bullets and bayonets. They were stabbed with bayonets and then shot at close range in their heads.

An announcement from the Presidium of the Ural Regional Soviet of the Workers' and Peasants' Government emphasized that conspiracies had been exposed to free the ex-tsar, that counter-revolutionary forces were pressing in on Soviet Russian territory, and that the ex-tsar was guilty of unforgivable crimes against the nation.

In view of the enemy's proximity to Yekaterinburg and the exposure by the Cheka of a serious White Guard plot with the goal of abducting the former Tsar
Tsar
and his family… In light of the approach of counterrevolutionary bands toward the Red capital of the Urals and the possibility of the crowned executioner escaping trial by the people (a plot among the White Guards to try to abduct him and his family was exposed and the compromising documents will be published), the Presidium of the Ural Regional Soviet, fulfilling the will of the Revolution, resolved to shoot the former Tsar, Nikolai Romanov, who is guilty of countless, bloody, violent acts against the Russian people.

IDENTIFICATION

Yekaterinburg's "Church on the Blood ", built on the spot where the Ipatiev House once stood

In 1979, the bodies of Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas II, Tsaritsa Alexandra, three of their daughters, and those of four non-family members killed with them, were discovered near Sverdlovsk (Yekaterinburg) by amateur archaeologist Alexander Avdonin . In January 1998, the remains excavated from underneath the dirt road near Yekaterinburg were officially identified as those of Nicholas II and his family (excluding one of his daughters and Alexei). The identifications, including comparisons to a living relative, were performed by separate Russian, British and American scientists using DNA analysis concur and were found to be conclusive.

In July 2007, an amateur historian discovered bones near Yekaterinburg belonging to a boy and young woman. Prosecutors reopened the investigation into the deaths of the Imperial Family, and in April 2008, DNA tests performed by a US laboratory proved that bone fragments exhumed in the Ural Mountains belonged to two children of Nicholas II, son Alexei (b. 1904) and daughter Maria (b. 1899), according to Russian news agencies. That same day it was announced by Russian authorities that the remains of the entire family had been identified.

On 1 October 2008, Supreme Court of Russia
Russia
ruled that Nicholas II and his family were victims of political persecution and should be rehabilitated. In March 2009, results of the DNA testing were published, confirming that the two bodies discovered in 2007 were those of Alexei and his sister Maria.

FUNERAL

After the DNA testing of 1998, the remains of the Emperor
Emperor
and his immediate family were interred at St. Peter and Paul Cathedral , Saint Petersburg , on 17 July 1998, on the eightieth anniversary of their executions. The ceremony was attended by then Russian President Boris Yeltsin , who said, "Today is a historic day for Russia. For many years, we kept quiet about this monstrous crime, but the truth has to be spoken."

The British royal family was represented at the funeral by Prince Michael of Kent , and more than twenty ambassadors to Russia, including Sir Andrew Wood , Archbishop John Bukovsky , and Ernst-Jörg von Studnitz, were also in attendance.

SAINTHOOD

Main article: Romanov sainthood
Romanov sainthood

TSAR NICHOLAS II OF RUSSIA

Tsar- Martyr
Martyr
Nicholas II of Russia Royal Passion-Bearer Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas II of Russia
Russia

BORN (1868-05-18)18 May 1868 Tsarskoye Selo , Saint Petersburg , Russian Empire
Russian Empire

DIED 17 July 1918(1918-07-17) (aged 50) Yekaterinburg , Russian SFSR
Russian SFSR

VENERATED IN Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church

CANONIZED 1981 and 2000 by Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
Abroad and the Russian Orthodox Church

MAJOR SHRINE Church on Blood , Ekaterinburg, Russia

FEAST 17 July

In 1981, Nicholas and his immediate family were recognised as martyred saints by the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
Outside Russia
Russia
. On 14 August 2000, they were recognised by the synod of the Russian Orthodox Church . This time they were not named as martyrs, since their deaths did not result immediately from their Christian faith; instead, they were canonised as passion bearers . According to a statement by the Moscow synod, they were glorified as saints for the following reasons:

In the last Orthodox Russian monarch and members of his family we see people who sincerely strove to incarnate in their lives the commands of the Gospel. In the suffering borne by the Royal Family in prison with humility, patience, and meekness, and in their martyrs deaths in Yekaterinburg in the night of 17 July 1918 was revealed the light of the faith of Christ that conquers evil.

However, Nicholas's canonisation was controversial. The Russian Orthodox Church Abroad was split on the issue back in 1981, some members suggesting that the emperor was a weak ruler and had failed to thwart the rise of the Bolsheviks. It was pointed out by one priest that martyrdom in the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
has nothing to do with the martyr's personal actions but is instead related to why he or she was killed.

The Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
inside Russia
Russia
rejected the family's classification as martyrs because they were not killed on account of their religious faith. Religious leaders in both churches also had objections to canonising the Tsar's family because they perceived him as a weak emperor whose incompetence led to the revolution and the suffering of his people and made him partially responsible for his own murder and those of his wife, children and servants. For these opponents, the fact that the Tsar
Tsar
was, in private life, a kind man and a good husband and father or a leader who showed genuine concern for the peasantry did not override his poor governance of Russia.

Despite the original opposition, the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
inside Russia
Russia
ultimately recognised the family as "passion bearers," or people who met their deaths with Christian humility. The Church does not, however, recognise the remains interred at Peter and Paul Cathedral as being those of the Imperial Family.

ASSESSMENT

Nicholas is generally considered to have been incompetent at the colossal task of ruling the enormous Russian Empire
Russian Empire
. Historian Barbara Tuchman gives a damning evaluation of his reign:

was ruled from the top by a sovereign who had but one idea of government—to preserve intact the absolute monarchy bequeathed to him by his father—and who, lacking the intellect, energy or training for his job, fell back on personal favorites, whim, simple mulishness, and other devices of the empty-headed autocrat. His father, Alexander III , who deliberately intended to keep his son uneducated in statecraft until the age of thirty, unfortunately miscalculated his own life expectancy, and died when Nicholas was twenty-six. The new Tsar
Tsar
had learned nothing in the interval, and the impression of imperturbability he conveyed was in reality apathy—the indifference of a mind so shallow as to be all surface. When a telegram was brought to him announcing the annihilation of the Russian fleet at Tsushima , he read it, stuffed it in his pocket, and went on playing tennis.

In Russia, Nicholas II faced widespread criticism after the victory of the Revolution. Pavel Bykov, who in Russia
Russia
wrote the first full account about the downfall of the Tsar, denounced Nicholas as a "tyrant, who paid with his life for the age-old repression and arbitrary rule of his ancestors over the Russian people, over the impoverished and blood-soaked country". Soviet-era historians noted that Nicholas II was not fit to be a statesman. It has been argued that he had a weak will and was manipulated by adventurist forces. His regime was condemned for extensive use of the army, police, and courts to destroy the revolutionary movement. He was criticised for fanning nationalism and chauvinism. With the punitive expeditions and courts-martial during the 1905 Revolution, the monarch became known as "Nicholas the Bloody". Nicholas's reign was seen as a time of suffering for Russians.

Robert K. Massie provides a more sympathetic view of the Tsar:

... there still are those who for political or other reasons continue to insist that Nicholas was "Bloody Nicholas". Most commonly, he is described as shallow, weak, stupid—a one-dimensional figure presiding feebly over the last days of a corrupt and crumbling system. This, certainly, is the prevailing public image of the last Tsar. Historians admit that Nicholas was a "good man"—the historical evidence of personal charm, gentleness, love of family, deep religious faith and strong Russian patriotism is too overwhelming to be denied—but they argue that personal factors are irrelevant; what matters is that Nicholas was a bad tsar .... Essentially, the tragedy of Nicholas II was that he appeared in the wrong place in history.

ANCESTORS

ANCESTORS OF NICHOLAS II OF RUSSIA

16. Paul I of Russia
Russia

8. Nicholas I of Russia
Russia

17. Duchess Sophie Dorothea of Württemburg

4. Alexander II of Russia
Russia

18. Frederick William III of Prussia
Frederick William III of Prussia

9. Princess Charlotte of Prussia
Prussia

19. Duchess Louise of Mecklenburg-Strelitz

2. Alexander III of Russia
Alexander III of Russia

20. Louis I, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine

10. Louis II, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine

21. Landgravine Louise of Hesse-Darmstadt

5. Princess Marie of Hesse and by Rhine

22. Charles Louis, Hereditary Prince of Baden

11. Princess Wilhelmine of Baden

23. Landgravine Amalie of Hesse-Darmstadt

1. NICHOLAS II OF RUSSIA

24. Friedrich Karl Ludwig, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck

12. Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg

25. Countess Friederike of Schlieben

6. Christian IX of Denmark
Christian IX of Denmark

26. Landgrave Charles of Hesse-Kassel

13. Princess Louise Caroline of Hesse-Cassel

27. Princess Louise of Denmark
Denmark
and Norway
Norway

3. Princess Dagmar of Denmark
Denmark

28. Landgrave Frederick of Hesse-Cassel

14. Landgrave William of Hesse-Kassel

29. Princess Caroline of Nassau-Usingen

7. Princess Louise of Hesse-Kassel

30. Frederick, Hereditary Prince of Denmark
Denmark
and Norway
Norway

15. Princess Louise Charlotte of Denmark
Denmark

31. Duchess Sophia Frederica of Mecklenburg-Schwerin

TITLES, STYLES, HONOURS AND ARMS

Styles of NICHOLAS II OF RUSSIA

REFERENCE STYLE His Imperial Majesty

SPOKEN STYLE Your Imperial Majesty

ALTERNATIVE STYLE Sir

TITLES AND STYLES

* 18 MAY 1868 – 13 MARCH 1881: His Imperial Highness Grand Duke Nicholas Alexandrovich of Russia * 13 MARCH 1881 – 1 NOVEMBER 1894: His Imperial Highness The Tsesarevich of Russia * 1 NOVEMBER 1894 – 15 MARCH 1917: His Imperial Majesty The Emperor
Emperor
and Autocrat of All the Russias * 15 MARCH 1917 – 17 JULY 1918: Nicholas Alexandrovich Romanov * SINCE 2000: Saint
Saint
Nicholas the Passion Bearer

Nicholas II's full title as Emperor, as set forth in Article 59 of the 1906 Constitution , was: "By the Grace of God, We Nicholas, Emperor
Emperor
and Autocrat of All the Russias , of Moscow, Kiev
Kiev
, Vladimir , Novgorod
Novgorod
; Tsar
Tsar
of Kazan
Kazan
, Tsar
Tsar
of Astrakhan , Tsar
Tsar
of Poland
Poland
, Tsar of Siberia
Siberia
, Tsar
Tsar
of Tauric Chersonesus , Lord of Pskov
Pskov
, and Grand Prince of Smolensk
Smolensk
, Lithuania
Lithuania
, Volhynia
Volhynia
, Podolia , and Finland
Finland
; Prince of Estonia
Estonia
, Livonia , Courland and Semigalia , Samogitia
Samogitia
, Bielostok , Karelia , Tver
Tver
, Yugor , Perm
Perm
, Vyatka, Bogar and others; Sovereign and Grand Prince of Nizhni Novgorod
Novgorod
, Chernigov
Chernigov
, Ryazan
Ryazan
, Polotsk
Polotsk
, Rostov
Rostov
, Jaroslavl , Beloozero , Udoria , Obdoria , Kondia , Vitebsk
Vitebsk
, Mstislav, and Ruler of all the Severian country; Sovereign and Lord of Iveria , Kartalinia , the Kabardian lands and Armenian province: hereditary Sovereign and Possessor of the Circassian and Mountain Princes and of others; Sovereign of Turkestan
Turkestan
, Heir of Norway
Norway
, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein
Schleswig-Holstein
, Stormarn , Dithmarschen , and Oldenburg , and so forth, and so forth, and so forth."

HONOURS

Emperor Nicholas II Land in a 1915 map of the Russian Empire. Back then it was believed that what is now Severnaya Zemlya
Severnaya Zemlya
was a single landmass.

Emperor Nicholas II Land (Russian : Земля Императора Николая II, Zemlya Imperatora Nikolaya II) was discovered in 1913 by the Arctic Ocean Hydrographic Expedition led by Boris Vilkitsky on behalf of the Russian Hydrographic Service . Still incompletely surveyed, the new territory was officially named in the Emperor's honour by order of the Secretary of the Imperial Navy in 1914. The archipelago was renamed ' Severnaya Zemlya
Severnaya Zemlya
' in 1926 by the Presidium of the Central Executive Committee of the Soviet Union . Domestic Nicholas II in the uniform of Chevalier Guard Regiment , 1896 After his coronation, Nicholas II leaves Dormition Cathedral . The Chevalier Guard Lieutenant marching in front to the Tsar's right is Carl Gustaf Mannerheim , later President of Finland.

* He was Grand Master of the following orders:

* Order of St. Andrew * Order of St. Alexander Nevsky
Order of St. Alexander Nevsky
* Order of the White Eagle * Order of St. Anne * Order of St. Stanislaus , 1st class * Order of St. Vladimir , 4th class * Order of Saint
Saint
George , 4th class

King Chulalongkorn
Chulalongkorn
of Siam with Nicholas II in Saint
Saint
Petersburg, during the king's visit to Europe in 1897 Foreign

* Mecklenburg-Strelitz : Grand Cross of the House Order of the Wendish Crown (9 January 1879) * Netherlands
Netherlands
: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Netherlands Lion (15 March 1881) * Oldenburg : Grand Cross of the House and Merit Order of Peter Frederick Louis (15 April 1881) * Japan
Japan
: Order of the Rising Sun , Grand Cordon with Paulownia Flowers (4 September 1882) * Baden : Grand Cross of the House Order of Loyalty (15 May 1883) * Spain
Spain
: Order of the Golden Fleece (15 May 1883) * Portugal
Portugal
: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Christ (15 May 1883) * Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach : Knight of the House Order of the White Falcon (15 May 1883) * Sweden
Sweden
: Knight of the Royal Order of the Seraphim (19 May 1883) * Grand Duchy of Hesse : Grand Cross of the Grand Ducal Ludwig Order (2 May 1884) * Kingdom of Bavaria
Kingdom of Bavaria
: Knight of the Order of Saint
Saint
Hubert (6 May 1884) * Belgium
Belgium
: Grand Cordon of the Order of Leopold (6 May 1884) * Bulgaria
Bulgaria
: Grand Cross of the Order of St. Alexander (6 May 1884) * Greece
Greece
: Grand Cross of the Order of the Redeemer (6 May 1884) * Denmark
Denmark
: Knight of the Order of the Elephant
Order of the Elephant
(6 May 1884) * France
France
: Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour
Legion of Honour
(6 May 1884) * Holy See
Holy See
: Grand Cross of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre (Jerusalem Patriarchate) (6 May 1884) * Hungary
Hungary
: Grand Cross of the Order of Saint
Saint
Stephen of Hungary
Hungary
(6 May 1884) * Kingdom of Italy
Kingdom of Italy
: Order of the Most Holy Annunciation (6 May 1884) * Kingdom of Italy: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus (6 May 1884) * Kingdom of Italy: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Crown of Italy (6 May 1884) * Prussia
Prussia
: Order of the Black Eagle
Order of the Black Eagle
(6 May 1884) * Romania
Romania
: Grand Cross with Collar of the Order of the Star of Romania
Romania
(6 May 1884) * Württemberg : Grand Cross of the Order of the Crown (6 May 1884) * Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
: Grand Cross of the Order of Osmanieh (28 July 1884) * Persia : Portrait of the Shah of Persia (28 July 1884) * Empire of Brazil : Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Southern Cross (19 September 1884) * Emirate of Bukhara : Order of Noble Bukhara (2 November 1885) with diamonds (27 February 1889) * Thailand
Thailand
: Knight of the Order of the Royal House of Chakri (8 March 1891) * Emirate of Bukhara: Order of the Crown with brilliant characters (21 November 1893) * United Kingdom
United Kingdom
: Knight of the Order of the Garter
Order of the Garter
(1893) * Denmark: Order of the Dannebrog (1894) * Ethiopian Empire : Order of the Seal of Solomon , 1st class (30 June 1895) * Qing Dynasty
Dynasty
: Order of the Double Dragon , studded with diamonds (22 April 1896) * Emirate of Bukhara: Order of the Sun of Alexander (18 May 1898) * United Kingdom: Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath
Order of the Bath
* United Kingdom: Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order
Royal Victorian Order
(1904) * United Kingdom: Royal Victorian Chain (1904) * Romania: Order of Carol I (15 June 1906) * Sweden: Chain of the Order of the Seraphim (12 May 1908) * Mongolia
Mongolia
: Order of the Precious Rod (1913) * Kingdom of Serbia: Grand Cross of the Order of Karađorđe\'s Star (1910) * Kingdom of Serbia: Grand Cross of the Order of St. Sava * Kingdom of Italy: Gold Medal of Military Valour (1916) * Bulgaria: Order of Saints Cyril and Methodius * Kingdom of Montenegro : Grand Cross of the Order of Prince Danilo I

Nicholas II was granted honorary senior rank in a number of foreign armies, reciprocating by extending similar distinctions to a number of his fellow monarchs. These included the Imperial German, Spanish, Italian, Danish and British armies.

He was Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal Scots Greys from 1894 until his death. On becoming Colonel-in-Chief he presented the Regiment with a white bearskin , now worn by the bass drummer of the Pipes and Drums of the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards . The Imperial Russian anthem is still played at dinner nights in the Officers' Mess, where there remains a portrait of the Tsar
Tsar
in Scots Greys uniform. Since his death, the Regiment has worn a black backing behind its cap badge as a symbol of mourning.

ARMS

Lesser Coat of Arms of the Empire of Russia
Russia

CHILDREN

IMAGE NAME BIRTH DEATH NOTES

BY PRINCESS ALIX OF HESSE AND BY RHINE (6 June 1872 – 17 July 1918, married on 26 November 1894)

Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna 15 November 1895 17 July 1918 Shot at Yekaterinburg by the Bolsheviks

Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna 10 June 1897

Grand Duchess Maria Nikolaevna 26 June 1899

Grand Duchess Anastasia
Anastasia
Nikolaevna 18 June 1901

Tsarevich Alexei Nikolaevich 12 August 1904

WEALTH

Estimates of Nicholas II's personal wealth have been vastly exaggerated. As Emperor
Emperor
of All The Russias, and an autocrat, the resources under his command were virtually incalculable. However, the vast majority of this was owned by the state as Crown property; the Romanov family's personal wealth was only a small fraction of this. As monarch, the income of Nicholas was 24 million gold roubles per annum: this derived from a yearly allowance from the Treasury, and from the profits of Crown farmland. From this income, he had to fund staff, the upkeep of imperial palaces and imperial theatres, annuities for the royal family, pensions, bequests, and other outgoings. "Before the end of the year, the Tsar
Tsar
was usually penniless; sometimes he reached this embarrassing state by autumn." According to the Grand Marshal of the Court, Count Paul Benckendorff, the family's total financial resources amounted to between 12.5 and 17.5 million roubles. As a comparison, Prince Felix Yussupov estimated his family's worth in real estate holdings alone as amounting to 50 million gold roubles.

DOCUMENTARIES AND FILMS

See also: List of films about the Romanovs

Several films about Nicholas II and his family have been made, including Anastasia
Anastasia
(1956), Nicholas and Alexandra
Nicholas and Alexandra
(1971), Anastasia: The Mystery of Anna (1986), Rasputin: Dark Servant of Destiny (1996 HBO
HBO
), Anastasia
Anastasia
(1997), and two Russian adaptations Assassin of the Tsar
Tsar
(1991) and The Romanovs: An Imperial Family (2000).

SEE ALSO

* Adolphe Kegresse ; * Kegresse track ; * Emperor railway station in Pushkin town

NOTE

* ^O.S./N.S. Over the course of Nicholas's life, two calendars were used: the Old Style
Old Style
Julian Calendar
Julian Calendar
and the New Style Gregorian Calendar . Russia
Russia
switched from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar on 1 February (O.S.) / 14 February (N.S.) 1918. *

* ^ O.S. 20 October 1894 * ^ O.S. 2 March 1917 * ^ O.S. 14 May 1896

REFERENCES

* ^ 2 March 1917 in the Julian Calendar
Julian Calendar
then in use in Russia, which is the same day as 15 March 1917 in the Gregorian Calendar
Gregorian Calendar
used elsewhere at that time. * ^ Woods, Alan (1999) "The First Russian Revolution" in Bolshevism: The Road to Revolution by Alan Woods, Well Red Publications, ISBN 1900007053 * ^ A B Kallistov, D. P. (1977). History of the USSR in Three Parts: From the earliest times to the Great October Socialist Revolution. Progress Publishers. * ^ Martin Vennard (27 June 2012), Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas - exhibits from an execution, BBC News, retrieved 3 April 2017 * ^ Urlanis, Boris (2003). Wars and Population. University Press of the Pacific. ISBN 1410209458 * ^ Lieven 1993 , p. 238 * ^ Lieven 1993 , pp. 239–241 * ^ Lieven 1993 , pp. 242–244 * ^ A Reader's Guide to Orthodox Icons The Icons that Canonized the Holy Royal Martyrs * ^ New York Times (2000) Nicholas II And Family Canonized For Passion * ^ "Orthodox Terminology", Church of the Mother of God * ^ The letters of Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas and Empress
Empress
Marie: being confidential correspondence between Nicholas II, last of the Tsars, and his mother, Dowager Empress
Empress
Maria Feodorovna. Edward J. Bing (ed.). London: Nicholson and Watson, 1937. * ^ Van Der Kiste, John (2003) The Romanovs: 1818–1959, Sutton Publishing, p. 151 * ^ Clay, Catarine (2006) King, Kaiser, Tsar: Three Royal Cousins Who Led the World to War, Walker & Company, ISBN 0802716237 , p. 54 * ^ Magnus, Philip (1964) King Edward the Seventh , E.P. Dutton color:#555">(Subscription required (help)). * ^ King (1994) p. 70 * ^ "The Czarewitch". St James\'s Gazette . 30 July 1894. Retrieved 11 March 2016 – via British Newspaper Archive . (Subscription required (help)). * ^ King (2006) p. 326 * ^ "THE CZAR AND PRINCESS ALIX. ANOTHER MANIFESTO". Exeter and Plymouth Gazette. 5 November 1894. Retrieved 11 March 2016 – via British Newspaper Archive . (Subscription required (help)). * ^ Figes, Orlando (1996), A People\'s Tragedy , p. 18. * ^ Feinstein, Elaine (2006). Excerpt from Anna of All the Russias. Vintage. ISBN 978-1-4000-3378-2 . * ^ "CZAR ALEXANDER\'S FUNERAL". Sheffield Evening Telegraph. 20 November 1894. Retrieved 11 March 2016 – via British Newspaper Archive . (Subscription required (help)). * ^ Massie (1967) p. 42. * ^ Massie (1967) p. 44 * ^ Warth , p. 20 * ^ Figes, p. 165 * ^ Pierre, Andre (1925) Journal Intime de Nicholas II, Paris: Payot, p. 127 * ^ Radziwill, Catherine (1931) Nicholas II, The Last of the Tsars, London: Cassell And Company Ltd., p. 100. * ^ A B Warth , p. 26 * ^ A B Massie (1967) p. 1017 * ^ Warth , pp. 26–27 * ^ King (2006) p. 420 * ^ King, Greg (2007) Twilight of Splendor: the Court of Queen Victoria in Her Diamond Jubilee Year , John Wiley & Sons, pp. 173–175 * ^ The Nomination Database for the Nobel Prize in Peace, 1901–1956. Nobelprize.org. Retrieved on 1 May 2014. * ^ King (2006) p. 137 * ^ A B C D E F G H Kowner, Historical Dictionary of the Russo-Japanese War, p. 260-264. * ^ Warth , p. 67 * ^ "Beyond the Pale: The Pogroms of 1903–1906". Retrieved 17 July 2008. * ^ Massie (1967) pp. 94–95, 122 in Russian edition * ^ Solzhenitsyn, Alexander (2001) Two hundred years together. Moscow. p. 329 * ^ Figes, Orlando (1996), A People\'s Tragedy , pp. 197–8 * ^ Massie, Robert K. Nicholas and Alexandra
Nicholas and Alexandra
(1967) p. 228 * ^ A B Massie (1967) p. 124 * ^ A B Massie (1967) pp. 124–125 * ^ A B C Cf.: Massie (1967) p. 125. — Massie's translation is not authentic. * ^ "State Archive of the Russian Federation, ф.601.ОП.1, д.248. Diary of Nickolas Romanov. 9 January 1905. (\'\'in Russian\'\')". Militera.lib.ru. Retrieved 25 October 2010. * ^ A B Vorres, Ian (1985) The Last Grand Duchess, London, Finedawn Publishers, p. 121 * ^ Harold Williams , Shadow of Democracy, p. 11, 22 * ^ H. Williams, p. 77 * ^ O. Figes A People\'s Tragedy , p. 191 * ^ Kenez, Peter (1999) A History of the Soviet Union From the Beginning to the End, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0521311985 , p. 7. This was especially true among the illiterate peasantry or 'dark masses' who although they followed their own (almost pagan) rituals, had until this point held complete naive faith in the Tsar. * ^ Lyons, M (1974) Nicholas II, The Last Tsar, Routledge & Kegan Paul, ISBN 0710078021 , p. 116 * ^ http://www.peoples.ru/state/politics/vitte/ * ^ Features And Figures Of The Past Covernment And Opinion In The Reign Of Nicholas II * ^ Witte's Memoirs, p. 241 * ^ "Nicolas\' diary 1905 (in Russian)". Rus-sky.com. Retrieved 28 April 2013. * ^ Massie (1967) p. 243 * ^ A B Massie (1967) p. 242 * ^ Massie (1967) p. 244 * ^ A B Massie (1967) p. 245 * ^ A B Massie (1967) p. 246 * ^ A B C Massie (1967) p. 247. * ^ Massie (1967) p. 248 * ^ A B Massie (1967) p. 226 * ^ Tames , p. 49. * ^ Massie (1967) p. 185 * ^ Clay, Catarine (2006) King, Kaiser, Tsar: Three Royal Cousins Who Led the World to War, Walker & Company, ISBN 0802716237 , pp. 300–301 * ^ King (2006) p. 391 * ^ King (2006) p. 397 * ^ A B Merriman, John (2009) A History of Modern Europe Volume Two, W. W. Norton 1st Edition: Paléologue M.G. La Russie des Tsars pendant la grande guerre.— Paris: Plon, 1922. (Chapter XII); Maurice Paléologue. An ambassador\'s memoirs (Volume 1, Chapter VIII, see Sunday, 31 January 1915) * ^ Buchanan, G. (1923) My Mission to Russia
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and other diplomatic memories. London: Cassell. p. 200. Archive.org. Retrieved on 1 May 2014. * ^ Churchill, Winston (1931) The unknown war. London: C. Scribner's Sons, p. 170. * ^ Massie (1967) pp. 84, 320 in Russian edition * ^ Martin Gilbert . The First World War: A Complete History, 1994, p. 27 * ^ John Keegan . The First World War, 1998, p. 63 * ^ Hew Strachan , The First World War, Vol I: To Arms (2001), p. 85 * ^ Hamilton, Richard F. and Herwig, Holger H. (2003) Origins of World War One, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0521817358 , p. 514 * ^ Zubov, Andrei (ed.) (2010) History of Russia
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XX Century Volume I, 1894–1939, AST Publishers, p. 291 * ^ Tames , p. 43 * ^ Josef und Ulli. "Germany during World War One". Archived from the original on October 18, 2009. Retrieved 7 September 2009. * ^ A B C Tames , p. 42 * ^ Massie, Robert K. Nicholas and Alexandra: The Last Tsar
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and His Family (1967) p. 309-310 * ^ Tames , p. 46 * ^ Hall, C (2006) Little Mother of Russia, Holmes and Meier, ISBN 0841914222 , p. 264 * ^ King, Greg and Wilson, Penny (2003) The Fate of the Romanovs, John Wiley & Sons, ISBN 0471207683 * ^ A B C D Tames , p. 52 * ^ Warth , p. 199 * ^ A B C D Tames , p. 53 * ^ Tames , p. 55 * ^ A B Massie, Robert K. Nicholas and Alexandra: The Last Tsar
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and His Family (1967) p. 461 * ^ Gareth Russell (2014). The Emperors: How Europe\'s Rulers Were Destroyed by the First World War. Amberley. pp. 164–65. * ^ Rose, Kenneth King George V
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(1983) p. 210 * ^ Massie, Robert K. Nicholas and Alexandra: The Last Tsar
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and His Family (1967) p. 488-492 * ^ Massie, Robert K. Nicholas and Alexandra: The Last Tsar
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and His Family (1967) p. 493-494 * ^ Tames , p. 62. * ^ Massie, Robert K. Nicholas and Alexandra: The Last Tsar
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and His Family (1967) p. 502-505 * ^ A B C Nicholas & Alexandra – The Last imperial Family of Tsarist Russia, Booth-Clibborn Editions, 1998, ISBN 1861540388 * ^ Massie (1995) p. 8. * ^ Massie (1995) p. 6. * ^ Alexander, Robert (2003). The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar. Penguin Group US. ISBN 978-1-101-20036-0 . * ^ Telegraph quoted in The Kitchen Boy by Robert Alexander (unpaginated). * ^ Robert K. Massie (2012). The Romanovs: The Final Chapter. Modern Library. p. 34. ISBN 978-0-679-64563-4 . * ^ Coble, MD. "The identification of the Romanovs: Can we (finally) put the controversies to rest?" . Investig Genet. 2: 20. PMC 3205009  . PMID 21943354 . doi :10.1186/2041-2223-2-20 . * ^ "Экспертиза подтвердила, что найденные останки принадлежат Николаю II" (in Russian). ITAR-TASS. 5 December 2008. Archived from the original on August 7, 2011. * ^ Coble, M. D.; Loreille, O. M.; Wadhams, M. J.; Edson, S. M.; Maynard, K.; Meyer, C. E.; Niederstätter, H.; Berger, C.; Berger, B.; Falsetti, A. B.; Gill, P.; Parson, W.; Finelli, L. N. (2009). "Mystery Solved: The Identification of the Two Missing Romanov Children Using DNA Analysis" . PLoS ONE. 4 (3): e4838. PMC 2652717  . PMID 19277206 . doi :10.1371/journal.pone.0004838 . * ^ "Famous DNA". Isogg.org. Retrieved 25 October 2010. * ^ Parsons TJ, Muniec DS, Sullivan K, Woodyatt N, Alliston-Greiner R, Wilson MR, Berry DL, Holland KA, Weedn VW, Gill P, Holland MM (1997). "A high observed substitution rate in the human mitochondrial DNA control region". Nature Genetics. 15 (4): 363–8. PMID 9090380 . doi :10.1038/ng0497-363 . * ^ Harding, Luke (25 August 2007). "Bones found by Russian builder finally solve riddle of the missing Romanovs". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 20 May 2010. * ^ A B "DNA Confirms Remains of Tsar\'s Children". CBS News. Associated Press. 30 April 2008. Retrieved 28 September 2007. * ^ Details on further testing of the Imperial remains are contained in Rogaev, E.I., Grigorenko, A.P., Moliaka, I.K., Faskhutdinova, G., Goltsov, A., Lahti, A., Hildebrandt, C., Kittler, E.L.W. and Morozova, I., "Genomic identification in historical case of Nicholas II Royal family.", Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, (2009). The mitochondrial DNA of Alexandra, Alexei, and Maria are identical and of haplogroup H1. The mitochondrial DNA of Nicholas was haplogroup T2. Their sequences are published at GenBank as FJ656214, FJ656215, FJ656216, and FJ656217. * ^ BBC News. Russia\'s last Tsar
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rehabilitated. Retrieved on 1 October 2008 * ^ "Last Tsar\'s family rehabilitated". Russiatoday.com. 1 October 2008. Archived from the original on January 24, 2009. Retrieved 7 September 2009. * ^ "Russia\'s Last Tsar
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Declared Victim of Repression". TIME. Archived from the original on January 14, 2009. Retrieved 7 September 2009. * ^ "DNA proves Bolsheviks killed all of Russian Tsar\'s children", CNN, 22 December 2008. * ^ "Romanovs laid to rest". BBC News. 17 July 1998. * ^ 17 July 1998: The funeral of Tsar
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Nicholas II at romanovfamily.org, accessed 11 August 2016 * ^ A B Massie (1995) pp. 134–135. * ^ Ferro, Marc (1995) Nicholas II: Last of the Tsars. New York: Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-508192-7 , p. 2 * ^ Tuchman, Barbara W. The Guns of August . New York: Presidio Press, 1962, p.71. * ^ Massie (1967) pp. viii–x. * ^ http://www.imperialhouse.ru/en/dynastyhistory/dinzak1/446.html * ^ Barr, William (1975). "Severnaya Zemlya: the last major discovery". Geographical Journal. 141 (1): 59–71. doi :10.2307/1796946 . * ^ Архипелаг Северная Земля — один из наиболее крупных районов оледенения на территории России * ^ "Депутаты Законодательного собрания Красноярского края против переименования островов архипелага "Северная Земля"". newslab.ru (in Russian). 27 May 2007. Retrieved 12 August 2015. * ^ A B Massie, Robert K. Nicholas and Alexandra, New York, Atheneum, 1967, p64 * ^ Clarke, William The Lost Fortune of the Tsars, St. Martin's Griffin; Reprint edition, 1996, p101. * ^ Ferrand, Jacques Les Princes Youssoupoff & les comtes Soumarkoff Elston, Paris 1991

SOURCES

* Figes, Orlando (2015). A People's Tragedy: The Russian Revolution 1891−1924. The Bodley Head. * King, Greg (1994). The Last Empress. Birch Lane Press. * King, Greg (2006). The Court of the Last Czar: Pomp, Power and Pageantry in the Reign of Nicholas II. John Wiley & Sons. * Kowner, Rotem (2006). Historical Dictionary of the Russo-Japanese War. ISBN 0-8108-4927-5 : The Scarecrow Press. * Lieven, Dominic (1993). Nicholas II, Empreror of all the Russias. London: Pimlico. * Massie, Robert K. (1967). Nicholas and Alexandra. * Massie, Robert K. (1995). The Fate of the Romanovs: The Final Chapter. Random House. ISBN 0-394-58048-6 . * Tames, Richard (1972). Last of the Tsars. London: Pan Books Ltd. * Warth, Robert D. (1997). Nicholas II, The Life and Reign of Russia's Last Monarch. Praeger. ISBN 0275958329 .

FURTHER READING

* The Sokolov Report, in Victor Alexandrov , "The End of The Romanovs", London: 1966 * Boris Antonov , Russian Czars, St. Petersburg, Ivan Fiodorov Art Publishers (ISBN 5-93893-109-6 ) * Michael M. Baden, Chapter III: Time of Death and Changes after Death. Part 4: Exhumation, In: Spitz, W.U. & Spitz, D.J. (eds): Spitz and Fisher’s Medicolegal Investigation of Death. Guideline for the Application of Pathology to Crime Investigations (Fourth edition). Charles C. Thomas, pp.: 174–183, Springfield, Illinois: 2006 * Paul Grabbe , "The Private World of the Last Czar" New York: 1985 * Genrikh Ioffe , Revoliutsiia i sud'ba Romanovykh Moscow: Respublika, 1992 (in Russian) * Coryne Hall & John Van der Kiste , Once A Grand Duchess : Xenia, Sister of Nicholas II, Phoenix Mill, Sutton Publishing Ltd., 2002 (hardcover, ISBN 0-7509-2749-6 ) * Dominic Lieven , Nicholas II: Emperor
Emperor
of All the Russias. 1993. * Andrei Maylunas and Sergei Mironenko , A Lifelong Passion: Nicholas & Alexandra 1999 * Marvin Lyons , Nicholas II The Last Czar, London, Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1974 (hardcover, ISBN 0-7100-7802-1 ) * Shay McNeal , "The Secret Plot to Save the Czar" 2001 * Bernard Pares , "The Fall of the Russian Monarchy" London: 1939, reprint London: 1988 * John Curtis Perry
John Curtis Perry
and Konstantin Pleshakov , The Flight of the Romanovs. 1999. * Edvard Radzinsky , The Last Tsar: The Life and Death of Nicholas II (1992) ISBN 0-385-42371-3 . * Samten, Jampa. (2010). "Notes on the Thirteenth Dalai Lama 's Confidential Letter to the Tsar
Tsar
of Russia." In: The Tibet Journal, Special
Special
issue. Autumn 2009 vol XXXIV n. 3-Summer 2010 vol XXXV n. 2. "The Earth Ox Papers", edited by Roberto Vitali, pp. 357–370. * Mark D. Steinberg and Vladimir M. Khrustalev , The Fall of the Romanovs: Political Dreams and Personal Struggles in a Time of Revolution, New Haven: Yale University Press, 1995. * Anthony Summers and Tom Mangold , The File
File
on the Czar. 1976. * Andrew M. Verner , The Crisis of the Russian Autocracy: Nicholas II and the 1905 Revolution 1990 * Richard Wortman , Scenarios of Power: Myth and Ceremony in Russian Monarchy, vol. 2 2000 * Prince Felix Yussupov , Lost Splendour * Elisabeth Heresch , "Nikolaus II. Feigheit, Lüge und Verrat". F.A.Herbig Verlagsbuchhandlung, München, 1992 * The Complete Wartime Correspondence of Czar Nicholas II and the Empress
Empress
Alexandra, April 1914 – March 1917. Edited by Joseph T. Furhmann Fuhrmann. Westport, Conn. and London: 1999 * Letters of Czar Nicholas and Empress
Empress
Marie Ed. Edward J. Bing. London: 1937 * Letters of the Czar to the Czaritsa, 1914–1917 Trans. from Russian translations from the original English. E. L. Hynes. London and New York: 1929 * Nicky-Sunny Letters: correspondence of the Czar and Czaritsa, 1914–1917. Hattiesburg, Miss: 1970. * The Secret Letters of the Last Czar: Being the Confidential Correspondence between Nicholas II and his Mother, Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna. Ed. Edward J. Bing. New York and Toronto: 1938 * Willy-Nicky Correspondence: Being the Secret and Intimate Telegrams Exchanged Between the Kaiser and the Czar. Ed. Herman Bernstein. New York: 1917. * Paul Benckendorff , Last Days at Czarskoe Selo. London: 1927 * Sophie Buxhoeveden , The Life and Tragedy of Alexandra Fedorovna, Empress
Empress
of Russia: A Biography London: 1928 * Pierre Gilliard , Thirteen Years at the Russian Court New York: 1921 * A. A. Mossolov (Mosolov), At the Court of the Last Czar London: 1935 * Anna Vyrubova , Memories of the Russian Court London: 1923 * A.Yarmolinsky, editor, "The Memoirs of Count Witte" New York & Toronto: 1921 * Sir George Buchanan (British Ambassador) My Mission to Russia Page, Arthur Wilson (October 1904). "The Personality of the Czar: An Explanation, By A Russian Official Of High Authority". The World\'s Work: A History of Our Time . VIII: 5414–5430.

EXTERNAL LINKS

Wikimedia Commons has media related to NICHOLAS II OF RUSSIA .

Wikisource
Wikisource
has the text of the 1922 Encyclopædia Britannica article NICHOLAS II. .

* Nicholas_II at DMOZ
DMOZ
* Photos of the last visit of Tsar
Tsar
Nicholas and family to France, to Cherbourg 1909 from contemporary Magazine, Illustration * The Execution of Czar Nicholas II, 1918, EyeWitness to History. * Brief Summary of Czar *

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