The guests had been selected with a boldness and discrimination in which the initiated recognised the firm hand of Catherine the Great.
In this unfashionable region Catherine the Great, always indifferent to precedent and thrifty of purse, had built herself in her youth a many-peaked and cross-beamed cottage-orne on a bit of cheap land overlooking the bay.
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They went into the reception room familiar to Pierre, with two Italian windows opening into the conservatory, with its large bust and full length portrait of Catherine the Great.
Leo Tolstoy -- War and Peace
Peter the Great, Catherine the Great, Czar Alexander, they all tried it.