Jorma & Päivi Tuomi-Nikula: Nikolai II: Suomen suuriruhtinas [Nicholas II: Grand Duke of Finland]

11 March 2011 | Mini reviews, Reviews

Nikolai II: Suomen suuriruhtinas
[Nicholas II: Grand Duke of Finland]
Jyväskylä: Atena, 2010. 283 p., ill.
ISBN 978-951-796-650-4
Swedish-language edition:
Nikolaj II: Storfurste av Finland
Helsingfors: Schildts, 2010
ISBN 9789515018714
€ 41, hardback

This work is the first Finnish biography of the last Grand Duke of Finland, Tsar Nicholas II (1868–1918). It provides a new approach to historical writing in its treatment of the Tsar’s relationship with Finland in the face of increasing terror, the First World War and the 1917 revolutions. Terrorism as a form of resistance during the period of oppression in 1904–07 was more widespread in Finland than previously thought. Extracts from diaries, letters and other documents provide the background to events on the global political stage as well as the private lives of the figures. Finns initially responded favourably to Nicholas’ ascent to the throne in 1894, but this trust soon declined with Nicholas’ policy of Russification. Despite these increasingly strained relations, Nicholas enjoyed spending his holidays in Finland. This book contains a wealth of photographs, including some from the personal albums of Anna Vyrubova, a lady-in-waiting who fled to Finland. There are also never-before-published postcards dating from the era of oppression and revolution. The authors have previously written about the Tsars in Finland’s era as a Grand Duchy of Russia in their book Keisarit kesälomalla Suomessa (‘The emperors on summer holiday in Finland’, 2002).
Translated by Ruth Urbom

 

 

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