Czar Nicholas II of Russia

Essay by dakota3777 September 2007

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This paper will examine the early life of Nicholas Romanov, the last tsar of Russia, from his birth until his ascension to the throne. Nicholas's reign was plagued with problems, many out of his control; however his style of ruling didn't help matters. Nicholas was unprepared to rule Russia at the turn on the 20th century, which helped along the revolutions that were to later end his reign and his life. Nicholas, while alive, was not looked upon as a good ruler by many members of his government, his family, and his ruling colleagues elsewhere in Europe. This paper will explain how his unique upbringing and early years influenced his reign.

Nicholas was born on May 19, 1868 to Arch Duke Alexander III and his wife, Marie Fyodorovna, a Danish princess, as grandson of the Tsar of Russia, Tsar Alexander II. For a European royal, Nicholas had a very happy and unusual childhood.

His father, a simple and frugal man, raised him, his two sisters and two brothers in a Spartan existence. While they were raised in a palace, the royal children slept on army cots and took cold baths in wooden tubs . While they had many servants to wait upon them, it wasn't a servant-master relationship. Alexander, who always liked peasants because of their simple ways (he was a simple man) encouraged his children to have relationships with their servants . These practices differed from other European royal households where children lived in luxury and with uptight manners.

While many rulers and their heirs in Europe at the time had suspicious and cold relationships, Nicholas was always close to his father. Alexander played with the children and had an informal relationship with them that was looked down upon by the Russian aristocracy, which was known for being very...