Nicholas I was the Emperor of Russia from 1825 until 1855, known as one of the most reactionary of the Russian monarchs. On the eve of his death, the Russian Empire reached its historical zenith spanning over 20 million square kilometers. He was also the nominal King of Poland and Grand Duke of Finland.
Nicholas was born in Gatchina to Emperor Paul I and Empress Maria Feodorovna. He was a younger brother to Alexander I of Russia and Grand Duke Constantine Pavlovich of Russia.