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The Coronation of Emperor Alexander I on 15 September 1801

Vernet Émile,
Oil on canvas
60 х 94,5

State Russian Museum


The coronation of Emperor Alexander I and Elizabeth Alexeyevna took place on 15 September 1801 in the Dormition Cathedral of the Moscow Kremlin. It is well known that Elizabeth Alexeyevna did not receive the crown from Alexander I while kneeling, as her mother-in-law Marie Feodorovna had done before Paul, but instead was crowned standing up. This was, seemingly, a slight difference in the ritual that indicated a characteristic different in the views of the father and the son.

Author's Biography

Vernet Émile

Vernet, Émile Jean Horace
1789, Paris – 1863, Paris
French painter, draughtsman, engraver, lithographer, battle painter, author of historical subjects. Studied under his father Carle Vernet and François-André Vincent. Contributed to annual Paris Salons (from 1812). Director of the French Academy in Paris (1828–1834). Travelled across Algeria. Worked in Russia in 1836, 1838, 1842–1843, 1848. Honorary associate member of the Imperial Academy of Arts (from 1834). A. V. Vitkovsky, graduate of the Imperial Academy of Arts, and V. F. Timm, lithographer, studied at Horace Vernet’s studio in Paris. Favourite artist of Nicholas I; the Emperor not only generously paid for his works, but also awarded Russian orders of St Stanislaus, 2nd class (1836), St Anna, 2nd class (“decorated with diamonds”; 1843) and St Vladimir, 3rd class (1849).

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