Early the next morning the intelligence of the death of Paul (as having been produced by apoplexy!), and the accession of the grand-duke Alexander, were announced to the capital. The principal nobility and the great officers of state being assembled, Alexander was solemnly proclaimed emperor of all the Russias. As in the case of the murder of Peter III., none of the assassins of Paul were punished, but rewards were heaped upon them. How far his sons were cognizant of what was going on, it is impossible to tell; but it was generally believed that they were in the secret, and connived at it from a conviction that their father intended to immure them in a fortress. It is also a significant fact that, on the night of the murder, the English fleet under Nelson was sailing into the Baltic for the attack on Copenhagen.
The new emperor, on the day of his accession, presented himself at the parade on horseback, and was failed by the troops with loud and cordial acclamations. In the following September his coronation at Moscow took place amid great splendor. Alexander was in his twenty-fourth year when he ascended the throne; and, from his amiable disposition, had acquired the love and respect of all his subjects. The first measure which he adopted, his opening proclamation, and his earliest imperial orders, all tended to encourage and confirm the hopes witn which the Russian people beheld him mount the throne of his forefathers. In the same year he recalled the Siberian exiles, suppressed the secret state inquisition which had been re-established by Paul, and remodelled the senate. He likewise founded (in 1804) the university of Kharkoff, and emancipated the Jews.
Sears, Robert. An Illustrated Description of the Russian Empire. New York: Robert Sears, 1855