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Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia was the most renowned and the longest ruling female leader of Russia, reigned from July 9, 1762 to November 17, 1796. It was under her rule that Russia became one of t he Great Powers of Europe.

Top New Historical Fiction on Goodreads, January 2012

Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman by Robert K. Massie The Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Peter the Great, Nicholas and Alexandra, and The Romanovs returns with another masterpiece of narrative biography, the extraordinary story of an obscure young German princess who traveled to Russia at fourteen and rose to become one of the most remarkable, powerful, and captivating women in histor

The Great Imperial Crown made in 1762 for the coronation of Catherine the Great by the court jeweler J.Pauzie represents the height of creative imagination, lavish beauty and skilled workmanship. It is adorned with five thousand diamonds arranged in a splendid pattern of laurel wreaths and oak branches.

Catherine the Great Emerald and Diamond Earrings

Catherine the Great. Born in Prussia, she married Tsar Peter III of Russia. Catherine aided in a coup to overthrow her husband, and was named Empress. He was killed. Her 35 year reign is considered the golden age of the Russian empire.

Tsar Paul I of Russia. - Only son of Peter and Catherine the Great. He remained overshadowed by his mother for much of his life. Paul's reign lasted for only five years, until he was assassinated by conspirators.

The Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow, Russia ~ founded in 1776 upon request of Catherine II of Russia.

Monogram of Catherine II the Great of Russia, 1770s-1780s; Hermitage Museum.