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Poor boroughs spontaneously emerged on the outskirts of the city.
Saint Petersburg surpassed Moscow in population and industrial growth; it developed as one of the largest industrial cities in Europe, with a major naval base (in Kronstadt), river and sea port.
In September and October 1917, German troops invaded the West Estonian archipelago and threatened Petrograd with bombardment and invasion.
On March 12, 1918, the Soviets transferred the government to Moscow, to keep it away from the state border.
meaning "Peter's City", to remove the German words Sankt and Burg.
In March 1917, during the February Revolution Nicholas II abdicated both for himself and on behalf of his son, ending the Russian monarchy and over three hundred years of Romanov dynastic rule.
It remained the seat of the Romanov dynasty and the Imperial Court of the Russian Tsars, as well as the seat of the Russian government, for another 186 years until the communist revolution of 1917.
Baroque architecture became dominant in the city during the first sixty years, culminating in the Elizabethan Baroque, represented most notably by Italian Bartolomeo Rastrelli with such buildings as the Winter Palace.
In the 1760s, Baroque architecture was succeeded by neoclassical architecture.
Many monuments commemorate the Russian victory over Napoleonic France in the Patriotic War of 1812, including the Alexander Column by Montferrand, erected in 1834, and the Narva Triumphal Gate.
In 1825, the suppressed Decembrist revolt against Nicholas I took place on the Senate Square in the city, a day after Nicholas assumed the throne.