Chère Annette: Letters from Russia 1820-1828: The Correspondence of the Empress Maria Feodorovna of Russia to Her Daughter the Grand Duchess Anna Pavlovna, the Princess of Orange

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9780750905527: Chère Annette: Letters from Russia 1820-1828: The Correspondence of the Empress Maria Feodorovna of Russia to Her Daughter the Grand Duchess Anna Pavlovna, the Princess of Orange
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My blessings and best wishes to you, Dear Anne, as to William and the children. May God grant you all a happy year and reunite us one day.
Thus begins, in January 1820, the surviving correspondence from Empress Maria Feodorovna in St Petersburg to her youngest daughter, Anna Pavlovna, Princess of Orange. Separated by Anna's marriage in 1816 to William of Orange, mother and daughter maintained almost daily contact by letter for twelve years. Anna and her family were indeed eventually reunited in 1824. The long trip was, however, made difficult by the Prince and Princess's position in the Dutch court and by Anna's frequent pregnancies. When Anna left again for Brussels she was not to know that this would in fact be the last occasion she would see her mother or brother, the Emperor Alexander.
Although far from her home country Anna was kept fully acquainted with events in Russia and within the extended Romanov royal family. There was a series of particularly tragic and worrying events at the end of 1825: Alexander died after a brief illness and the grief of the whole family at the loss of 'our Angel' was compounded after Nicholas I's accession by a revolutionary plot led by factions opposed to the new Emperor taking the throne.
The letters provide not only an important and special insight into the last years of Alexander I and the early years of Nicholas I, throwing light on the life of the Romanov dynasty both in Russia and The Netherlands; they also convey the intimate and affectionate relationship between a mother concerned for the welfare of a favourite daughter and her family far away from her place of birth.

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S. W. Jackman is Professor Emeritus at the University of Victoria, Canada.

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Maria Feodorovna; Anna Pavlovna
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