Reburial Of A Russian Empress - CBS News
Not much to look at, with uncouth manners, and no developing signs of any culture, he was already addicted to alcohol and more or less impotent, and found the idea of marrying Sophia ― who, not a great beauty herself but at least intellectually well-developed, had grown wan from her illness ― unappealing and tiresome.
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However, it was the opinion of Empress Elizabeth that counted, and despite developing a hearty dislike for Sophia's mother, she found Sophia herself likable.
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The Empress who was willing to write a list of her own virtues had limits when it came to false modesty. In an official portrait she still expected to appear as an exceptional personality, and could see that Roslin’s slickly executed likeness had sold her short.
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“The exhumation was done in the presence of representatives of the Russian Orthodox Church. The necessary samples were taken from the remains of Nicholas II and Empress Alexandra Fyodorovna,” Vladimir Solovyov, the head of the investigation team, told TASS, a state-owned Russian news agency.
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For much of history, Elizabeth Petrovna, also known as Tsar Elizabeth I, has been regarded as the intermediary ruler between the two famed 18th-century Russian Tsars, Peter the Great and Catherine I. She has been celebrated as a court favorite, renowned for having an "ethereal spirit," establishing herself as the center of attention at balls, and loving to dance. Yet, throughout the historiography of Russian rulers, few contributions of substance had been attributed to Elizabeth's reign. In recent years, however, the positive effects of her control over the throne have been published and the stigma of being the "transitional" leader during the middle years of the 1700s has diminished.
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Elizabeth Petrovna led a charmed existence. Born on 18 December 1709, to Peter the Great and Martha Skaronska, or Catherine I, a peasant, she was technically illegitimate, (her father had not found the time to marry her mother until after Elizabeth was born); nevertheless, she grew up in a supportive and loving environment. She lived an enchanted lifestyle in which she learned to appreciate the customs and etiquette of both Western culture and Russian tradition; Elizabeth was a passionate church attendee, Russian patriot, fluent speaker of the French language, and a competent dancer of the minuet.
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Elizabeths father, Peter, had abolished the law of succession during his reign. Subsequently, the Supreme Council was given the right to choose Peters heir to the throne. In the initial years after her fathers death in 1725, Elizabeth was nonchalant regarding political activity; she was content with being a social butterfly and Russian societys fashion leader. In 1730, Elizabeths cousin Anne of Courland became Empress and Elizabeth was allowed to remain a promiscuous, apathetic Russian socialite. For years, she trounced around Russia, courting numerous lovers and spending exorbitant amounts of money.
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By 1740, however, Elizabeth had matured; she was frustrated by her cousin, Empress Anne's, vindictiveness as a political leader and the perpetual threats of banishing Elizabeth to a nunnery. As Empress Anne lay on her deathbed, the people hoped that Elizabeth would take the throne. Instead, she was passed over in favor of Prince Anton and Anna Leopoldnovnas newly born son, Ivan VI, on whose behalf his mother, served as regent. Secret agents acting on the orders of the Regent Anna watched Elizabeth day and night. Anna was worried that Elizabeth would incite a revolt against her, because Anna recognized that as a foreigner, the Russian populace distrusted her, while Elizabeth was a favorite of the guards and loved by the people.