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Sunday, 23 November 2014
Final Residence of Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna in Toronto for Sale
Topic: Olga Alexandrovna GD

The house in Toronto, Canada where the Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna died in November 1960 has been listed for sale. The modest two-story semi-detached house in Toronto’s east end residential district of Riverdale listed 10 days ago is on the market for $539,000, “and is a gut job,” according to Laura Lind of the National Post.

The youngest sister of Emperor Nicholas II convalesced in the care of Russian friends, Colonel Konstantin and Galina Martemianoff who ran the beauty shop on the main floor at 716 Gerrard Street East. “She was bedridden for a year and ate nothing but ice cream,” according to Nick Barisheff, who was 15 when the 78-year-old grand duchess succumbed to cancer in his family’s apartment. She died in the upstairs front bedroom Nov. 24, 1960. 

The palace of Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna situated at 46-48, Ulitsa Tchaikovskogo in St. Petersburg
Before the Russian Revolution, Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna lived in a 200 room palace situated at 46-48, Ulitsa Tchaikovskogo in St. Petersburg. The palace was a gift from Nicholas II to his sister on the occasion of her wedding in 1901 to Duke Peter Alexandrovich of Oldenburg.

The parapeted neo-Palladian residence with a 47-window front façade had its own church, coach houses, a two-storey gardener’s shed, a greenhouse and an art studio for Olga, who was a prolific painter - she produced more than 2,000 paintings in her lifetime. For sport, the couple hunted wolves. The childless couple was waited on by a staff of 70. The four daughters of Nicholas II - Grand Duchesses Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia were regular guests at their favourite aunt’s house in the Russian capital.

Today, Grand Duchess Olga’s former palace is home to the Saint Petersburg Chamber of Commerce and Industry. I had the opportunity to visit the interiors of her residence some years back. It was pleasing to see that a number of the original interiors had survived, including sculptures, ceiling paintings, door decorations, and fireplaces which have all been restored.

Olga brother, Emperor Nicholas II, his wife Empress Alexandra Feodorovna and their five children, were all murdered in Ekaterinburg on July 17th, 1918. Olga was one of a number of members of the Russian Imperial family who fled Bolshevik Russia two years later with her second husband Colonel Nikolai Kulikovsky and their two sons, Tihon and Guri. In 1920 they travelled by train to Novorossiysk and took shelter in the Danish Embassy. From there, they went by ship to Dardanelles, a barge to the Island of Prinkipo, then on to Constantinople and Belgrade. Olga was finally reunited with her mother, the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna on Good Friday, in the Amalienburg Palace in Copenhagen. Olga, Nikolai, and their two sons then went to live temporarily at Hvidore.

They lived in Denmark in obscurity until Stalin accused her of corroboration with the Germans. For safety, the family emigrated to Canada, and resettled on a farm about 63 km west of Toronto in Campbellville, Ontario and finally in a tiny house on Camilla Road in Cooksville, Ontario. Her cousin, Queen Elizabeth II, visited in 1959, and invited Olga to lunch on her yacht Britannia when it docked in Toronto.

Lind notes in her National Post article, “reportedly, other than her clothing, the only possessions the duchess took to the Gerrard Street apartment were an orange china cup and saucer, a Faberge dog and a framed photo of her beloved second husband, which dated back to his time in the Russian army, 1917. She slept on a cot.”

She further adds, “since its day as a beauty salon in what has become East Chinatown, the grand duchess’s final hospice has been a travel agency. The main floor front room now appears to be used as a religious altar, with an eight-foot-wide staircase in the centre of the living area that evokes the Odessa Steps. The second-level apartment has 10-foot ceilings, transom windows and older baseboards. Olga Romanov’s 15 x 12 front bedroom has a bay window and southern view to Gerrard.

Mr. Barisheff is shocked. “It needed a lot of work when we moved in. My mother paid $13,000. She sold it in 1968 and bought a condo.”

Grand Duchess Olga's house at 2130 Camilla Road in Cooksville, Ontario
It is interesting to note that Grand Duchess Olga's house at 2130 Camilla Road in Cooksville (now Mississauga) was also put on the market last year. This is the house where she lived with Nikolai Kulikovsky and her two sons, Tihon and Guri. The famous photograph of her standing in front of a portrait of her father, Emperor Alexander III hanging over the fireplace was taken in this house. It was listed for a staggering $439,000 CAD - the realtor phoned to ask if I would be interested in buying the house, and then proceeded to tell me that the interior of the house was in a very bad state.

Toronto, Canada’s largest city has a large and growing Russian population, among her most famous Russian émigrés is Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna. Her years in Canada continue to interest both residents and visitors alike. From her modest home on Camilla Road, to her final home on Gerrard Street in Toronto; from the icons which today hang in the Russian Orthodox Church in Toronto, to her final resting place in York Cemetery in Toronto, these historic spots allow us to reflect on Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna as one of the most highly respected and beloved members of the Romanov dynasty to this day.
For more information on Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna, including her years in Canada from 1948-1960, please refer to the following article on Royal Russia's main web site:
The Grand Duchesses of Russia - Olga Alexandrovna 
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 23 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 8:33 AM EST
Updated: Sunday, 23 November 2014 10:57 AM EST
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Saturday, 22 November 2014
Faberge Museum in St. Petersburg Marks First Anniversary
Topic: Faberge

The Faberge Museum is housed in the former Shuvalov Palace, situated on the Fontanka Canal.
The Faberge Museum in St. Petersburg marked its first anniversary this month. The city's newest and certainly one of its most beautiful showcases the history and work of the famous jewellery firm founded in 1842, and it's Imperial and Royal clients in Russia, Great Britain, Europe and other parts of the world. Russian photographer Igor Sychev shares his photographs of the Faberge Museum exhibits and the exquisite Shuvalov Palace interiors.
Click on the link below to read the article and view the beautiful colour photographs of Russian photographer Igor Sychev:

Faberge Museum in St. Petersburg Marks First Anniversary

© Faberge Museum, Elle Magazine, Igor Sychev, and Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia 22 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 9:36 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, 22 November 2014 9:43 AM EST
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Friday, 21 November 2014
Las Vegas Presents 'Faberge Revealed'
Topic: Faberge

Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art (BGFA), the premier cultural destination on the Las Vegas Strip recognized for presenting world-class exhibitions in an unrivalled setting, this week debuted “Fabergé Revealed.” Culture seekers and art lovers can view the exhibit through May 25, 2015.
Organized in partnership with the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, “Fabergé Revealed” showcases 238 rare Fabergé artifacts. A part of the largest public collection of Fabergé outside of Russia, these treasures are synonymous with exquisite craftsmanship, impeccable taste and the rich history of the Russian imperial family from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Unique to this exhibition is a small collection of “Fauxbergé” objects – Fabergé look-alikes once believed to be originals.

“Our guests will be fascinated by these treasured objects that not only encompass the beauty of art, but also tell one of the most powerful stories in history – the fall of the Russian imperial family,” said BGFA Executive Director Tarissa Tiberti. “‘Fabergé Revealed’ highlights each of the distinct styles displayed in the original House of Fabergé stores in St. Petersburg, Moscow and London centuries ago.”

Throughout the late 1800s and early 1900s, the House of Fabergé produced more than 150,000 objects of art, jewels and silver articles – many of which were one of a kind with detailed design and artistry. “Fabergé Revealed” features signature pieces from Fabergé’s original collection, including the Imperial Pelican Easter Egg (1897), created to celebrate the Dowager Empress of Russia. The red-gold egg unfolds into eight oval frames graduated in size, each rimmed with pearls and inscribed with the names of the institutions that appear on the front. A pelican stands in a nest atop the egg and feeds her young, symbolizing maternal care. 
© Bellagio Gallery Press Release. 21 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 5:59 AM EST
Updated: Friday, 21 November 2014 6:02 AM EST
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Thursday, 20 November 2014
Putin Unveils Alexander I Statue Near Moscow Kremlin
Topic: Alexander I

Putin pointed out that Alexander I played a considerable role in uniting Russians and in defending steadfastly the country’s independence

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia attended a ceremony inaugurating a monument to Emperor Alexander I at the Alexander Garden near the Moscow Kremlin walls on Thursday.

The ceremony was also attended by Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin, Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky, representatives from the Russian Orthodox Church and public figures, according to a statement posted on the Kremlin website.

Unveiling the monument, Putin praised the emperor's role in forming the system of European and international security at the time.

This event is timed to coincide with the 200th anniversary since the end of the war against Napoleon, in which the victory became Russia's global triumph and Alexander the First played a huge role in uniting the nation and defending our country's independence, the president said.

"Alexander I has gone down in history as the man who beat Napoleon, as a strategist and diplomat with a vision, a statesman aware of responsibility for safe European and global development. It was the Russian emperor who founded the then European, international security system, which was quite adequate for those times," Putin said.

The monument is a statue of Alexander I on a pedestal. The emperor is holding a sword, with the enemy's weapons under his feet. Opposite the monument are bas-reliefs depicting two major battles, including the battle of Borodino, the emperor himself, Saint Seraphim of Sarov, and two churches - the Christ the Savior Cathedral built on Alexander I's proposal, and the Kazan Cathedral.
© Interfax. 20 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 5:28 PM EST
Updated: Friday, 21 November 2014 5:41 AM EST
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Wednesday, 19 November 2014
Exhibition: Unrivalled Wedgwood Opens in Moscow
Topic: Exhibitions

The large-scale exhibition of the masterpieces manufactured by Wedgwood, a legendary British company, opens on 15 November in halls of the All-Russia Decorative Art Museum. The exhibition is a part of official program of the UK-Russia Year of Culture 2014. The White Hall of the museum with the floor area of more than six hundred square meters will present artworks from the Lady Lever Collection (Liverpool) which never travelled abroad before, and unique and rare exhibits from collections of the State Hermitage, State Tretyakov Gallery, State Museum of Fine Arts named after A. S. Pushkin, palace museums of Moscow and St. Petersburg suburbs (Tsarskoye Selo, Pavlovsk, Peterhof, Ostankino, Kuskovo, Kolomenskoye estates). The main idea of this display is to show the impressive experience of Josiah Wedgwood, to illustrate the importance of innovative thinking in spheres of art, science and entrepreneurship. Visitors of the exhibition will be able to see original objects of impeccable taste, high quality, elegance and style produced by the Wedgwood Company which will be displayed in Moscow for the first time.

The exhibition will put together more than three hundred objects of highest esthetical value: jewelry, furniture pieces, costumes, works of painting and graphics from the XVIII – XIX cc. Among the unique exhibits of the display the visitors will discover one of the three marble fireplaces with Flaxman blue jasper plaquettes in its original form, porcelain plates with paintings by animalist George Stubbs, two oval medallions with portraits of Catherine II and Peter I (the unique nature of these porcelain plates and medallions is in their size and sophisticated manufacturing technology), pieces from the famous Green Frog service of Catherine II comprising almost a thousand of objects. Besides that, the exhibition will feature one of the most perfect reproductions of the famous Portland vase (the antique Roman original of it made in color glass was owned by Barberini Family, by Dukes of Portland – now it is kept in the British Museum) made in black basalt. A masterpiece of late Thomas Gainsborough, the Portrait of the Duchess of Cumberland, is another unique exhibit from the collection of the Lady Lever Collection, amazing in its virtuous performance, exquisite color scheme and noble model, one of the inimitable beauties of the period. Only one work of this master is represented in Russian collections.

Josiah Wedgwood, the creator of ceramic artworks, was simultaneously an artist, an inventor and a businessman. Wedgwood products came to symbolize British culture and turned into a standard of style. His business abilities and personal character helped him  to launch a flourishing business, and support of influential persons helped to shape a brand which is still inseparably associated with such notions as “superb taste” and “English traditions” today. The exhibits of our display will cover an extensive range of topics associated with culture, science and organization of production: emergence of the company in 1759, manufacturing of products in ancient Greek and Roman styles, experiments with color and form, introduction of innovative technologies, issue of new pottery and creation of fashionable jewelry.

The Unrivalled Wedgwood exhibition in our museum will coincide with the Music of the Earth festival conducted by Boris Berezovsky, a piano player. The festival will become an annual event, and it will be devoted to musical cultures of different countries. The festival will form a sort of a musical accompaniment for the exhibition during the UK-Russia Year of Culture 2014. It will open on November 26 with a gala concert at the House of Music, and then four unforgettable recitals of star performers from Russia, England and Ireland will continue its program during the next four days at our museum.

Visitors of our exhibition will also be able to participate in the UK-Russia Year of Culture 2014 intense program which will accompany the main exhibition: lectures and round-table discussions, watching of films about Wedgwood, its time and fate, recitals of British literature works popular in the XVIII century, master classes, presentations of the Russian and the English tea party traditions, educational quizes. A special souvenir shop offering Wedgwood products will be open during the exhibition.

Unrivalled Wedgwood runs from November 15, 2014 – February 1, 2015 at the All-Russia Decorative Art Museum, Moscow. 
© All-Russia Decorative Art Museum. 19 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:27 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, 20 November 2014 7:02 PM EST
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Tuesday, 18 November 2014
Special Imperial Russia Issue of National Geographic Magazine, November 1914
Topic: Imperial Russia

Copyright Notice: The following article was originally published in the November 17, 2005 edition of Russia Beyond the Headlines. The author Alexander Potemkin, owns the copyright of the work presented below.

One hundred years ago, National Geographic published an issue entirely devoted to Russia. On Nov. 19, the American-Russian Cultural Cooperation Foundation honoured the author's grandson for his contribution to American-Russian cultural cooperation.

The November 1914 issue of National Geographic Magazine is famous in Russia. Under the title "Young Russia. The Land of Unlimited Possibilities,” journalist and editor Gilbert H. Grosvenor gave the reader an idea - with a hundred pages of text accompanied by just as many photographs - of Russia's geography, history, economy, customs and traditions, of its beliefs and aspirations.

With majestic slowness resembling the Volga River - the symbol of Russia - Grosvenor begins his narration very meaningfully: "Russia is not a state; it is a world…"According to the traveler, the country's resources are inexhaustible. Grosvenor talks about Russia's achievements in industry, trade, agriculture. He believes it is capable of feeding half of the world. The population growth is enviable (according to his estimates, by the end of the 20th century 600 million people were supposed to live in Russia).

The main objects of his photographs are people. The magazine does not have any portraits of the tsar or his family, just numerous photographs of common people: industrialists, merchants, peasants and artisans.

In a way, with his impressions the author echoed the prediction of the famous French traveler Alexis De Tocqueville (1805-1859), who had written: “There are at the present time two great nations in the world ... the Russians and the Americans... Their starting-point is different, and their courses are not the same; yet each of them seems marked out by the will of Heaven to sway the destinies of half the globe.”

Grosvenor dedicated the "Russia and the United States" section to Russia's contribution to the formation of America. He reminded readers about Catherine the Great's refusal to send Cossacks to subdue the American colonies when King George III asked her, about Russia's many efforts in ending the war between the U.S. and Great Britain, about the friendly visit of Russian squadrons in New York and San Francisco during the American Civil War, which helped prevent foreign intervention. Many of these facts were a revelation for readers.

The magazine could not but stir Americans' interest in Russia. After such promotion Russia could only expect a flow of curious tourists, farseeing businessmen and so on. But the world stage darkened. WWI snuffed out the hopes of many nations. The chance to realize Grosvenor's optimistic hopes in the development of American-Russian relations was lost.

The National Geographic Magazine itself has not lost its interest in Russia. Since 1914 more than a hundred articles about the country have appeared on its pages. Today the magazine is published also in Russian with a circulation of 29,000 copies.
Alexander Potemkin was the last Soviet cultural attaché, and is now the executive director of the ARCCF.

On Nov. 19, the American-Russian Cultural Cooperation Foundation hosted a black-tie event in Washington, DC, honoring the role photojournalism has played in promoting closer U.S.-Russia relations.

During the event, the ARCCF presented Gilbert M. Grosvenor, honorary president of the National Geographic Society and Gilbert H. Grosvenor's grandson, with an award for the magazine's and his grandfather's contribution to American-Russian cultural cooperation.

Speaking on behalf of the National Geographic Society at the event, John Fahey, chairman of the organization's board, said: "Gilbert H. Grosvenor was a man ahead of his time. His remarkable cover story showcasing Russia...was groundbreaking for its beauty as well as its unique utlization of pictures to enhance the written word." 
© Alexander Potemkin / Russia Beyond the Headlines. 18 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:43 AM EST
Updated: Friday, 21 November 2014 6:54 AM EST
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Hermitage to Celebrate 250 Years with Light Show in St. Petersburg
Topic: State Hermitage Museum

Palace Square event to feature 3D projections, classical music and poetry
Copyright Notice: The following article was originally published in the November 18, 2014 edition of Russia Beyond the Headlines / TASS. The author Yekaterina Kalinina, owns the copyright of the work presented below.

St. Petersburg’s Palace Square will serve as the venue for the biggest public event in celebration of the Hermitage Museum’s 250th anniversary on Dec. 6, with a musical light show called “The Ball of History” on the eve of the important date.
According to the event’s organizers, the 3D film will be projected onto the façade of the General Staff Building. The video sequence will be accompanied by excerpts of musical compositions in a variety of styles and from different eras, including works by Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Glinka, Shostakovich, Rameau, Jenkins, Schubert, and Piazzolla.

“Viewers will be taken back to the most significant and most dramatic episodes of Russian history, in which the Hermitage was a direct participant – the reign of Catherine II, the fire during Nicholas I, the construction of the Hermitage buildings and the opening of the first public art museum in Russia, the night of the Provisional Government’s arrest [the 1917 Revolution], and the Siege [of Leningrad],” a member of the project’s press service explained.

The show will feature quotes from the memoirs of famous personalities, as well as from poetry by Akhmatova, Tsvetaeva, and Blok. The organizers have chosen a quote by the museum’s former director Boris Piotrovsky as the epigraph of the evening: “If we don’t save beauty, how can it save the world?”

The creative team for the DANCE OPEN festival, headed by production director Yekaterina Galanova, is developing the concept and staging for “The Ball of History,” creating the audio content, and producing all the aspects of the project.

The 3D show’s graphics are being created and its broadcast prepared by the creative team of French agency Cosmo AV, which helped organize the closing ceremony for the Sochi Olympics and Paralympics.

The musical light show on Palace Square will be free to the public, and sessions will be broadcast every half hour from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on Dec. 6. Entrance is free, and extra security measures will be in place. 
© Yekaterina Kalinina / RBTH / TASS. 18 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:05 AM EST
Updated: Friday, 21 November 2014 7:52 AM EST
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Monday, 17 November 2014
Patriarch Kirill Consecrates Russian Necropolis in Belgrade
Now Playing: Language: Russian. Duration: 2 minutes, 20 seconds
Topic: World War I

This past weekend in Belgrade, Patriarch Kirill consecrated the Russian Necropolis and the memorial ossuary to Russian soldiers 
On Saturday, 15 November 2014, His Holiness Kirill of Moscow and All Russia consecrated the restored Iveron Chapel, the renovated Russian necropolis at the Belgrade New Cemetery, where, together with Serbian Patriarch Irinej, he held a service dedicated to soldiers killed in the First World War. 

On that occasion, the two patriarchs laid wreaths to the monument to the Russian soldiers in the Great War, within the necropolis, which also consists of a chapel and four lots where Russian refugees were buried. 

In addition to a large number of citizens, the ceremony was attended by Russian Ambassador to Serbia Alexander Chepurin, famous Russian film director Nikita Mikhalkov and members of the Russian Army. 

The Russian patriarch thanked all the people who took part in the restoration of that sanctity, describing it as a monument to the Russian heroes that gave their lives for their faith, their Emperor and their homeland. At the same time, it is a beautiful monument symbolizing the brotherhood of the Serbian and Russian nation, said Patriarch Krill, adding that, by restoring that monument, we are also restoring our historical memory and the emotions we have for one another.
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 17 November, 2014 


The Russian Necropolis at the New Cemetery in Belgrade reopened in the Serbian capital on August 1st, 2014 after an extensive restoration.

Konstantin Kosachev, the head of the Federal Agency for the CIS, Compatriots living abroad and International Cultural Cooperation (Rossotrudnichestvo), attended the opening ceremony which opened with a memorial service at the Necropolis’s Iberian Chapel. Patriarch Irinej, the head of the Serbian Orthodox Church who led the church service, said that Russians and Serbs were linked by centuries-old friendship and that the Serbs remembered how Russian soldiers came to their rescue during World War One.

“Today, Serbia is coming under great pressure to throw a shadow on the Russian people. But we will never be able to do that under no consideration,” the Serbian patriarch stressed.

Aleksandar Vulin, the Serbian Minister of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social policy, said that Russia was the only “light in darkness” for the Serbs during World War One.

“History did not know examples when such a great nation made so many sacrifices for the sake of a small people,” Vulin stressed.

For his part, Konstantin Kosachev said that the current relations between the two counties were the best compensation for what happened a hundred years ago when Russian soldiers fought on the Serbian soil.

The orchestras played the anthems of Russia and Serbia. After that, the participants in the ceremony laid wreaths to a Russian and Serbian monuments to the WWI heroes. Live flowers were also lowered on the water at the confluence of the Rivers Danube and Sava on the traverse of the Kalemegdan fortress where the Russian flotilla stood to defend Belgrade during World War I.

A WWI exhibition has opened at the Progress gallery in central Belgrade. Apart from pictures, it features authentic artifacts of that time from Serbia, Russia and France.

A concert at the Russian Center of Science and Culture culminated the festivities in Belgrade. The programme included the most famous music pieces of the early 20th century played by Russian and Serbian musicians.

Russians who fought on the WWI fronts or immigrated to Serbia after the 1917 October Revolution are buried at the Russian Necropolis in Belgrade. More than 3,000 people, including 1, 360 generals, soldiers and officers who fought in WWI, are interred at the Necropolis.

The restoration of the biggest burial place of Russian compatriots abroad had been under way since 2010. Konstantin Kosachev said the project, valued at almost 2 million dollars, was financed both from the state budget and on donations of private companies and individuals.

The end of restoration works was timed to coincide with the centenary anniversary of the start of WWI. Austria declared a war on Serbia on July 28, 1914 while Russia entered the war a few days later on August 1.

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin who unveiled a WWI memorial on Moscow’s Poklonnaya Hill on Friday said that Russia had fulfilled its allied obligations during World War One.

For centuries, Russia sought to establish strong ties and build trust among nations and its role in the pre-war years was particularly important.

“On the eve of World War One Russia did everything to persuade Europe to resolve the conflict between Serbia and the Austro-Hungarian Empire peacefully without spilling blood but it had to answer the challenge and defend the fraternal Slavic nation and its own citizens from an external threat,” Putin said.
Note: this section of the article was originally published on August 1st, 2014 by ITAR-TASS. 

World War I monument located at the Novo Groblje Cemetery in Belgrade, Serbia
A few steps from the Iveron Chapel of the Novo Groblje cemetery stands the World War I memorial to Russian glory (above).  It is in the form of a shell, topped by a sculpture of Archangel Michael. Carved into the monument are the Russian Emblem and several inscriptions. One of them says in Russian: “Memory eternal to Emperor Nicholas II and the 2,000,000 Russian soldiers in the Great War.” Another says in Serbian: “To the Russian brethren who courageously fell on the Thessalonika front, 1914-1918.” Under the steps leading up to the monument there is a crypt chapel in which rest remains of soldiers who fell on the Thessalonika front, and of officers and soldiers of two Russian artillery units who gave their lives in the defense of Belgrade.    
© ITAR-TASS.17 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 11:52 AM EST
Updated: Monday, 17 November 2014 12:42 PM EST
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Monument To Russian Emperor Nicholas II Unveiled In Belgrade - VIDEO
Now Playing: Language: Serbian. Duration: 1 minute, 25 seconds
Topic: Nicholas II
Video Source: Russia Today
A monument to Russian Emperor Nicholas II was unveiled and blessed in Belgrade on Sunday and Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic said at the ceremony that Belgrade was getting yet another symbol of the old friendship, a place where people could meet and discuss their friendships based on Russia’s last emperor’s example of loyalty to Serbia.

A whole series of important monuments commemorating the Russian troops who fought alongside Serbian soldiers in both world wars will now include the monument to Nicholas II Romanov, a gift from the Russian historical society, a gift from the Russian Federation to Serbia, which will become part of their stories of gratitude and honour, the Serbian president stated.

“Emperor Nicholas II Romanov was killed ritually; Christianity and support for Slavic ideals was being killed,” Nikolic said, adding that the crime had amde the civil war in Russia even more fierce, and that Nicholas II had already been viewed as a saint by the Serbian people by that time. 

The monument was created by the most famous Russian sculptor, Andrey Kovachuk and Genady Pravotvorov and Belgrade architect Janko Krstic, who designed the park in which the monument is placed. 

Russian Patriarch Kirill and Serbian Patriarch Irinej blessed the monument, which was followed by a wreath laying ceremony. 

The unveiling and blessing of the monument is an important and historic event, Kirill said. 

Nicholas did a lot to save the Serbs in World War One and sacrificed his crown, empire and life to save Serbia, the Russian patriarch pointed out. 

Irinej stressed that this was a great day for Belgrade, Serbia and the Serbian people in the country and abroad. Many citizens, bishops, Russian government officials, Belgrade Mayor Sinisa Mali and Russian Ambassador to Serbia Alexander Chepurin attended the unveiling. 

Kirill and Irinej held a joint service at the St Sava Cathedral earlier. The unveiling ceremony marked the end of Kirill’s visit to Serbia. For more information on the monument to Emperor Nicholas II in the Serbian capital, please refer to the following articles: 

Patriarch Kirill Consecrates Monument to Nicholas II in Belgrade

Patriarch Kirill Will Visit Belgrade to Consecrate Monument to Nicholas II

Monument to Emperor Nicholas II Installed in Serbian Capital

Serbia to Erect Monument to Tsar Nicholas II 

© InSerbia News. 17 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 8:04 AM EST
Updated: Monday, 17 November 2014 8:42 AM EST
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'Petrograd Diary' Exhibition Dedicated to WWI Centenary Opens in St. Petersburg
Topic: World War I

The Rumyantsev Palace in St. Petersburg is hosting the exhibition “Petrograd Diary”. The exhibition features more than 200 exhibits from the collections of the State Museum of the History of St. Petersburg and photographs from the Central State Archive of Cinema and Photo Documents.  

It tells of the events of the First World War through the prism of life of Petersburg-Petrograd, chronologically covering the period from July 1914 (Russia’s entry into the war) until March 1918 (the signing of Brest-Litovsk peace, which marked Russia’s withdrawal from the war). The complex of documentary photographs, depicted Russian capital during the war time, and demonstrating by a number of photographs from the front positions of the Russia army, portraits of generals, maps with marked zones of combat operations and the movement of troops that allow to create historical parallels and to trace the close relationship of events, taking place at the front and the rear. The exhibition also features original overcoat and fur cap of ordinary Pavlovsky Regiment, items of military life of soldiers and officers of the Russian army; medical instruments and medical staff’s form of the First World War. 

Of particular interest are materials devoted to charitable activities during the First World War. In particular, the exposition contains reconstruction of the "home hospital", reminiscent of that in the Rumyantsev Palace (at that time the mansion of Kotchubey) on the English Embankment, as in many other mansions of the Petersburg nobility, at the expense of the owners was organized a hospital for wounded warriors. 

A special section of the exhibition is devoted to the military hospital trains. During the First World War, wealthy citizens, members of the royal family and members of the aristocracy on their funds organized military hospital trains and often went to the front, where par with simple medical personnel saved lives of wounded soldiers. 

The exhibition is complemented with authentic and reconstructed military uniforms and equipment of the First World War from the private collections of members of historical clubs of St. Petersburg. 
© Russkiy Mir. 17 November, 2014


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 7:48 AM EST
Updated: Monday, 17 November 2014 8:50 AM EST
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