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Author Topic: Nicholas II & Family  (Read 26895 times)
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LucyintheSky

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« Reply #90 on: December 04, 2019, 07:47:42 PM »

There is so much debate around the bodies. The body buried under the name Anastasia in the Peter and Paul fortress was approximately 5 foot 7 inches when Anastasia was the shortest of the four sisters by far.

I've always believed that body was Maria.

Years ago there was a site that actually put forth the idea it was Tatiana who was the missing body.
I remember that site Ellie! They did have a strong argument I thought. Iirc she/he used to/was or is a poster or moderator at the Alexander palace time machine forums
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Booklover

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« Reply #91 on: December 05, 2019, 02:53:58 AM »

I'm very sorry to hear that - He and his ex-wife Suzanne were the first to write in detail about the last Romanovs from a sympathetic point of view (while not discounting their failure as rulers).  R.I.P.

Didn't his son suffer from hemophilia?
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Carreen

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« Reply #92 on: December 05, 2019, 10:01:35 AM »

Yes, it gave them much insight into the inner world of the Czar's family. I found the passages dealing with Alexei's hemophilia very moving and impressive. I didn't know Massie had died, and I'm very sorry to hear it. I'm no specialist but I think the Massie book changed the way historians looked at the Imperial family and Alexandra's actions.
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« Reply #93 on: December 05, 2019, 04:47:26 PM »

It was a wonderful book. I read it 2 or 3 times. Makes you wonder if Victoria hadn't been a carrier, then her daughter Alice wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexandra wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexei would not have had Hemophilia, then there wouldn't have been a need for Rasputin, I do wonder if there still would have been revolution ?

Massie's book on Peter the Great is also worth reading.
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Kristallinchen

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« Reply #94 on: December 05, 2019, 04:54:41 PM »

It was a wonderful book. I read it 2 or 3 times. Makes you wonder if Victoria hadn't been a carrier, then her daughter Alice wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexandra wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexei would not have had Hemophilia, then there wouldn't have been a need for Rasputin, I do wonder if there still would have been revolution ?

Massie's book on Peter the Great is also worth reading.

I'm with those, who say that if Nikolai and Alix would've been honest about Alexei's illness they would've actually gained symphathy from the public.
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Booklover

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« Reply #95 on: December 05, 2019, 06:15:23 PM »

It was a wonderful book. I read it 2 or 3 times. Makes you wonder if Victoria hadn't been a carrier, then her daughter Alice wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexandra wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexei would not have had Hemophilia, then there wouldn't have been a need for Rasputin, I do wonder if there still would have been revolution ?

Massie's book on Peter the Great is also worth reading.

I'm with those, who say that if Nikolai and Alix would've been honest about Alexei's illness they would've actually gained symphathy from the public.


Yes, the secrecy about Alexei's illness made them withdraw and caused problems with the Russian people. Also since they were kept in the dark,  spectaculation about Alix and Rasputin was ripe.
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« Reply #96 on: December 05, 2019, 08:24:02 PM »

Worth watching the series"the last czars" on Netflix.  Well acted and historically correct. Rasputin gave me the creeps!
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Lady Willoughby

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« Reply #97 on: December 05, 2019, 08:31:17 PM »

Worth watching the series"the last czars" on Netflix.  Well acted and historically correct. Rasputin gave me the creeps!

I enjoyed it too.
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perdie

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« Reply #98 on: December 06, 2019, 12:10:37 AM »

It was a wonderful book. I read it 2 or 3 times. Makes you wonder if Victoria hadn't been a carrier, then her daughter Alice wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexandra wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexei would not have had Hemophilia, then there wouldn't have been a need for Rasputin, I do wonder if there still would have been revolution ?

Massie's book on Peter the Great is also worth reading.

I feel a revolution of some kind was inevitable.  The rapid industrialisation had created huge numbers of people in cities, dissatisfied with the poor conditions in which they lived and strikes had been happening for years.  That industrialisation was late and so very concentrated meaning it was much more vulnerable to strikes.  Not only that, but this and the conditions people lived in meant they were ripe for politicisation.  Back in the countryside, there was massive inequality.  Even though emancipation of serfdom had happened, peasants still had to pay redemption payments and had no hope of owning the land they worked.  Land reforms didn't really help the situation and there were many disturbances (if not outright revolts) in the countryside.  That's all before we get to haemophilia, the bad omens during the wedding of Nicholas and Alix, 1905 war and revolution, WW1...  Centuries of the monarchy and nobility oppressing the vast majority of the country bred the situation that got rid of them.
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miliosr

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« Reply #99 on: December 06, 2019, 01:00:19 AM »

I feel a revolution of some kind was inevitable.  The rapid industrialisation had created huge numbers of people in cities, dissatisfied with the poor conditions in which they lived and strikes had been happening for years.  That industrialisation was late and so very concentrated meaning it was much more vulnerable to strikes.  Not only that, but this and the conditions people lived in meant they were ripe for politicisation.  Back in the countryside, there was massive inequality.  Even though emancipation of serfdom had happened, peasants still had to pay redemption payments and had no hope of owning the land they worked.  Land reforms didn't really help the situation and there were many disturbances (if not outright revolts) in the countryside.  That's all before we get to haemophilia, the bad omens during the wedding of Nicholas and Alix, 1905 war and revolution, WW1...  Centuries of the monarchy and nobility oppressing the vast majority of the country bred the situation that got rid of them.
I agree. Russia had tremendous internal problems separate and apart from the discredit Rasputin brought to the Imperial Family and the Orthodox Church. Above all others was the agrarian problem. Alexander II had emancipated the serfs but there was no corresponding redistribution of land. Instead, the land was held communally which had the unintended consequence of leaving the peasantry to marinate in a kind of proto-Communism for 55 years. Some of the more far-seeing government officials realized the mistake and tried to correct it but without success.

I sometimes wonder what would have happened if Alexander III had lived longer. While I do believe he would never have let certain situations get out of hand (like relations with Japan in the Far East) as they did with Nicholas II, Alexander was still saddled with an increasingly inept bureaucracy. After all, the great famine of 1891-92 happened during his reign. The bureaucracy failed miserably at addressing the situation (and actually made it worse) and the entire debacle laid bare just how frayed Russian society was becoming.

So the Revolution may have happened whether Rasputin ever entered the picture or not.
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Carreen

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« Reply #100 on: December 06, 2019, 02:00:39 AM »

From what I understand, some kind of revolution was inevitable, and since Nicholas didn't really cooperate with the newly-installed Duma, it was obvious that autocracy's days were over. I sometimes think that without Lenin and the Bolsheviks, Kerenski and his government might have done good without the many crimes committed under the Bolsheviks.

I agree completely that the poor and uneducated masses needed a just and fair state where they could get out of their poverty. I understand why people then saw a big chance in Communist ideas, but after having read a lot of books about the time (especially Douglas Smith's Former People but also Orlando Figes books), I think that Bolshevism was not the right way. Maybe easy to see in retrospect.

To come back to Nicholas II. The methods his father used were no longer adequate, especially since Nicky lacked the authority and knowledge necessary to use them. His father didn't prepare him well, his uncles had too much influence, and accordingly, he never understood what was going on in his huge country. He should have looked at his grandfather's example, cooperated with moderate reformers, and transformed Russia as close to the British model as possible. Edward VII might have given him valuable advice.

In a constitutional monarchy, it would have been possible to open up about Alexey's disease. How did his loving parents ever think he could managed with the immense workload and pressure of being the czar? They should have changed the Pauline laws, made Olga the heir, and transformed the state slowly but surely. Education is the key - it was obvious the aristocracy wouldn't accept changes and the uneducated people might not accept them either. But an educated, liberal bourgeoisie is what they should have focused on building. Very difficult, yes. But Alexandra could have learned from her aunt, Empress Frederick, who did so much for education in autocratic Germany. Yes, autocracy didn't survive there either.

It's interesting that the autocracies that looked so strong in 1900 didn't survive - Germany, Russia, Austria, the Three Eagles. But the reformed, liberal, constitutional monarchies did.

It would have saved the world much trouble if Nicholas had dared to embrace change.

All this is hypothesis of course. Individuals can only do so much to stem the tide of time.

There was probably no way to save the Russian monarchy, not to mention autocracy.
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Lady Alice

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« Reply #101 on: December 08, 2019, 01:26:35 AM »

I'm very sorry to hear that - He and his ex-wife Suzanne were the first to write in detail about the last Romanovs from a sympathetic point of view (while not discounting their failure as rulers).  R.I.P.

Didn't his son suffer from hemophilia?

From Mr Massie's NY Times obit, "He became interested in Russian history after research into his sonís hemophilia led him to the famous case of Alexei, the hemophiliac child of Czar Nicholas II."
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Lady Alice

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« Reply #102 on: December 08, 2019, 01:29:32 AM »

It was a wonderful book. I read it 2 or 3 times. Makes you wonder if Victoria hadn't been a carrier, then her daughter Alice wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexandra wouldn't have been a carrier, then Alexei would not have had Hemophilia, then there wouldn't have been a need for Rasputin, I do wonder if there still would have been revolution ?

Massie's book on Peter the Great is also worth reading.

His N&A and PtG were great, but I felt he lost his way with Catherine - I think someone else ghost wrote part of it, as spellings, tone and syntax shifted around in some chapters - which was completely unlike him.

Godspeed, Mr Massie. You brought the Romanovs and their horrible fate close to my young teen heart a long, long time ago.
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« Reply #103 on: December 08, 2019, 03:49:40 AM »

Thanks for the info Lady A. Hadn't read that book about Catherine, now I don't think I will.
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lilyrose

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« Reply #104 on: December 11, 2019, 02:36:24 AM »

There is so much debate around the bodies. The body buried under the name Anastasia in the Peter and Paul fortress was approximately 5 foot 7 inches when Anastasia was the shortest of the four sisters by far.

I've always believed that body was Maria.

Years ago there was a site that actually put forth the idea it was Tatiana who was the missing body.
I remember that site Ellie! They did have a strong argument I thought. Iirc she/he used to/was or is a poster or moderator at the Alexander palace time machine forums

The website is still up! http://www.livadia.org/missing/

The facial reconstructions done on the skulls mostly convinced me that Maria was missing, but I definitely buy the argument for Tatiana being the one missing based on the arguments this site gave!
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