Antique Imperial Russian Photo Tsar Alexander III Romanov Family Nicholas II


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Fine antique cabinet photo by Levitsky of Tsar Alexander III (1845-1894), and his family in 1880. He is photographed with his wife Maria Feodorovna (Dagmar) (1847-1928), and their children: the future Tsar Nicholas II (1868-1918), Grand Duke George (1871-1899), Grand Duchess Xenia (1878-1960), Grand Duke Michael (1878-1918), and Grand Duchess Olga (1882-1960).

He was Emperor of Russia from 1881 until his death in 1894 and was highly reactionary, he reversed some of the liberal reforms of his father, Alexander II. He opposed any reform that limited his autocratic rule. During his reign Russia fought no major wars, and he was therefore styled "The Peacemaker".

Considered the best of Russia's portrait photographers, the Levitsky studio photographed four generations of the Romanov dynasty. In 1877, it was awarded the title Photographer of their Royal Majesty.

He wrote memoirs in two volumes entitled, 'Reminiscences of an Old Photographer' (1892), and 'How I Became a Photographer' (1896). He is buried in St. Petersburg's Smolenskoye Cemetery.

Upon his father's death in 1898, Rafail Levitsky continued the operation and tradition of the Levitsky portrait studio taking the now famous photos of Tsar Nicholas II and Tsarina Alexandra and their children Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna of Russia, Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna of Russia, Grand Duchess Maria Nikolaevna of Russia, Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia, and Alexei Nikolaevich, Tsarevich of Russia.

The Levitsky Studio was located in Moika River Embankment, 30 (1860s), Nevsky Prospect, 28 (1890s), and Kazanskaya Street, 3 (1898, the house is not preserved).

The Levitsky St. Petersburg Studio remained in operation until it was closed by the Soviets in 1918.

Size: 16 x 10.5 cm approx