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November 3, 2014

22 Vintage Photographs Capture Daily Life of the Last Tsar of Russia, Nicholas II in the 1910s

Nicholas II was the last tsar of Russia under Romanov rule. His poor handling of Bloody Sunday and Russia’s role in World War I led to his abdication and execution.

Nicholas II was born on May 18, 1868, in Pushkin, Russia. He inherited the throne when his father, Alexander III, died in 1894. Although he believed in autocracy, he was eventually forced to create an elected legislature. Nicholas II’s handling of Bloody Sunday and World War I incensed his subjects and led to his abdication. Bolsheviks executed him on July 17, 1918, in Yekaterinburg, Russia.

Nicolas sharing breakfast with his son Alexei in 1909.

Tsar Nicolas II and his daughters on a cannon, c.1910s. From left to right, Anastasia Nicolaïevna Romanov, Maria Nicolaïevna Romanov, Tatiana Nicolaïevna Romanov and Olga Nicolaïevna Romanov near their father, Nicolas II Romanov, tsar of all Russias, a good father, proud of his daughters. A moment of happiness during a family holidays on the Black Sea, probably in Crimea.

Tsar Nicolas II and Emir of Bukhara, c.1910s. The Emirate of Bukhara was a Central Asian state that existed from 1785 to 1920. It occupied the land between the Amu Darya and Syr Darya rivers, known formerly as Transoxiana.

A beautiful photo, shot on the imperial yacht of Nicolas II, c.1910s. Tsar surrounded by an officer and his sister Xenia, looks a picture with them, holding by one of his daughters, probably made by her.

Easter 1910 at the Livadia Palace. Tsar Nicolas II embraces the sailors which form the crew of his personal yacht, Standardt.

In 1910, Tsar Nicolas II, the Tsarina Alexandra and their children were living in Germany. They visited the various family members of the Czarina, born Hesse-Darmstadt.

Nicholas II, ready as a soldier, 1910. Tsar Nicholas II is rarely in civilian clothes in the photos. When he is not wearing his uniform, he wears outfits similar to those soldiers, and always a cap.

Nicholas poses with his heir in the middle of the sailors and officers of his personal yacht, 1910.

Meeting between Tsar Nicolas II and Orthodox monks or priests, 1911. The Orthodox Church is one of the pillars of Russia with the army.

Nicholas II & Alexeï: father and son, 1912.

Nicholas II between two tennis match, 1912.

Tsar Nicolas II with his tennis partner, c.1912-1913.

Nicolas II and George V, 1913.

Tsar Nicolas II and French General Joffre, 1913. Meeting between the Emperor of all the Russias with General Joffre, cief of the french military mission, representing French ally, during major military maneuvers held in Tsarskoe Selo.

Nicholas II met his officers, 1914.

Tsar, his son and Chiefs Of Staff, 1914.

French President Poincaré with his host, Tsar Nicolas II, 1914.

French President Poincaré on the yacht of Nicolas II: Alexandria, 1914.

The last smile of a Cossak named Nicholas II, 1914. The Tsar, in the uniform of Cossack, is one of the leaders of the outbreak of the First World War.

Interesting photo about Nicolas II and a Swastika, 1914.

Nicholas II playing the shepherd, 1914. On vacation in the mountains just before the outbreak of the First World War.

Nicholas II with three of his daughters, 1914.


  1. Have these portraits any explanation? What's the purpose of taking a photo with their face covered?

  2. Are they in mourning perhaps?

  3. I googled the image and found this information: Expressions of grief, especially crying, became a subject of memorial photography in the 1870s.

    Images such as these resulted in public recognition that death also profoundly affected the living. Sort of like the death photography only for grieving.

  4. The person that appears in the 4th picture ist grand duchess Olga Alexnadrovna Romanova not Xenia her older sister.




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