It is the northermost city to have over 1 million residents.
St. Petersburg was founded by Tsar Peter the Great in 1703, named after Saint Simon Peter, and was once the Russian capitol. It has also been known as Petrograd, Leningrad, or simply Petersburg.
People Born in St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg in People's Lives
Adelina Sotnikova: I traveled here in 2008 for the Russian Junior Championships, at age 12. I placed 10th. I came back in 2010 for the Russian Championships and placed 4th.
Leo Tolstoy: I began spending much time around 1848, when I was an unruly 20 year old. I traveled into this city in order to drink and gamble, and within a few years had accumulated massive gambling debts. Years later, in 1856, I returned to this city after the end of the Crimean War, now a hardened soldier who had managed to publish a handful of successful novels while serving in the army. I was welcomed into St. Petersburg society with open arms, and became a highly desired celebrity of the literary scene. However, the other intellectuals were soon irritated by my refusing to ally myself with anyone, or side with any school of thought. I declared myself an anarchist, and left for Paris in 1857.
Peter the Great: I founded this city in 1703, naming it after Saint Simon Peter. The land of this city was in a Swedish province that I had recently, proudly captured. This city was an embodiment of dreams for me, the culmination of all my striving to create a new, modern, cultured Russia that left its dark and medieval Old World customs behind. From the beginning, I planned to make this city the Russian capital, and did so. While the city was being built, I forbade any stonework taking place outside the city, so that all of the stonemasons would focus on finding work building St. Petersburg. During this time, I also met Catherine I, and fell in love with her. I took her as a mistress, and we married secretly in 1707. We married publically and officially in this city in 1712 - the same year that I also procliamed this city as the nation's capital. From there, I went on reshaping my country into a true European power, introducing revolutionary ideas of culture and forward thinking. I encouraged and made laws about education, sought to end arranged marriages, reformed the Russian Orthodox church, created a new order of precedence in which birthright did not matter so much as achievement, abolished land and household tax, conquered new lands, and constructed an extravagant palace, Peterhof, known as the "Russian Versailles." In 1725, after two years of ill health, I died of uremia and gangrene, at the age of 52. I had reigned for 42 years.
Ralph Fiennes: I traveled here in 1998 to film scenes of the movie Onegin.