Russian Expansion in Europe 1800–09

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Map Code: Ax00974

At the turn of the 19th century, Napoleon Bonaparte began a campaign of French imperial expansion across much of Europe. Russia’s stance towards Napoleon changed a number of times between 1800 and 1809 when the alliance between the two countries began to slip. After Alexander came to power in 1801, he enjoyed a brief period of admiration for Napoleon, but his opinion soon changed and he participated in the general alliance against Napoleon during the wars of the second, third and fourth coalitions. Russia took Georgia in 1803 and occupied the Ottoman territories of Wallachia and Moldavia during the Russo-Turkish War of 1806–12 but was persuaded to leave upon entering an alliance with Napoleon in the Treaties of Tilsit in 1807. The two empires entered a tenuous pact of mutual support, which culminated in Russian naval engagements against the British in the 1807–12 Anglo-Russian War and the seizure of Finland from Sweden in 1809.

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