Saint Petersburg

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St Petersburg (formerly Petrograd and Leningrad) Second-largest city in Russia, and a major seaport at the e end of the Gulf of Finland, on the delta of the River Neva. Founded in 1703 by Peter I (the Great), the city was the capital of Russia from 1712 to 1918. It was the scene of the Decembrist revolt (1825), and the Bloody Sunday incident in the Russian Revolution of 1905. Renamed Petrograd in 1914, it was a centre of the political unrest that culminated in the Russian Revolution. Petrograd workers were the spearhead of the 1917 Revolution, and the city was renamed Leningrad in 1924. Damaged during World War 2, it has since been rebuilt. Renamed St Petersburg (1991), following the break-up of the Soviet Union, it has federal status within the Russian Republic. Industries: shipbuilding, engineering, electronics, chemicals. Pop. (1999 est.) 4,661,000.

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