Keiser Aleksander ja Soome suurvürstiriigi asutamine 1812. aastal [Emperor Alexander I and the Establishment of the Grand Duchy of Finland]

Ilkka Tapio Seppinen


Establishment of the Grand Duchy of Finland by the Russian Emperor Alexander I was a decisive moment in Finnish history and is an exciting research subject for historians. However, the events are often presented as if Finland and Russia were the only two countries in the world. This article once again explores the issue of why Alexander I chose a solution that seemed beneficial even to the contemporary Finnish people, yet, differently from preceding historiography, the creation of the Grand Duchy of Finland is discussed in the context of Napoleonic Wars and the internal power strife in Russia. For this purpose, one must view Alexander’s position and the development of his views in relation to the circumstances of his accession to the throne and throughout the War of Wars. What becomes evident is that creating the Grand Duchy of Finland allowed Alexander to transform a series of defeats to Napoleon into a necessary victory in the Russo-Swedish war of 1808, which in turn secured his position on the throne of Russia.

(Longer version of the current abstract is included in the article, starting from p 85.)

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ISSN 2228-0669 (trükis / print)