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Friday, 6 March 2015
Tsarskoye Selo Publishes Family Album of Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich
Topic: Dmitri Pavlovich, GD

Photo © Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Preserve
Tsarskoye Selo has published the family photo album of Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich (1891–1942), grandson to Emperor Alexander II and cousin to Emperor Nicholas II of Russia.

The publication commemorates Grand Duke Dmitri’s death on 5 March 1942 and tells the story of his life through his personal archive photographs.   

As a participator in the assassination of Rasputin in December 1916, Dmitri was exiled to the Persian front until the 1917 revolution. The exile saved his life. Dmitri later lived in London, Paris, and Davos where he died.

Dmitri’s archive was donated to our museum in 2013 by his grandson, Michael Romanoff Ilyinsky from Cincinnati, the USA.

‘Thanks to Michael Romanoff Ilyinsky, our museum holds Russia’s largest collection of Grand Duke Dmitri memorabilia. Our new publication includes many photographs of Dmitri in immigration and some unique shots taken during his last years,’ says Dr. Iraida Bott, Tsrskoye Selo Deputy Director for Research and Education. ‘These priceless materials, unknown even to historians, could illustrate his whole life and gave us the idea to make this album.’

Photo © Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Preserve
The album is published in Russian only, and includes more than 40 pictures, with extended annotations written by the research staff of the museum and the introduction by Michael Romanov Ilyinsky.

It is published with support from the Tsarskoye Selo Friends Society members Pavel Gromov, Svetlana Sergeeva and Lana Gorbumova, and will soon be available at the bookstore in the Vestibule of the Catherine Palace. 
© Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Preserve. 06 March, 2015


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:37 AM EST
Updated: Friday, 6 March 2015 6:52 AM EST
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Tuesday, 23 April 2013
Romanov Memorabilia Handed Over to Russian Consulate
Now Playing: Language: Russian and English. Duration: 3 minutes, 30 seconds
Topic: Dmitri Pavlovich, GD

This year marks the 400th anniversary of the Romanov dynasty. In honour of this historic event, Michael Ilyinsky, the grandson of Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich, a U.S. citizen, announced earlier this month that he was donating a portion of his grandfather's archives to the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Preserve.  This rare collection of personal items includes books, photo albums, portraits and other items that once belonged to his illustrious grandfather.

The handing over ceremony was held at the Consulate General of the Russian Federation in New York. April 9, 2013.

The video offers a first-hand look at many of the items from the collection, including a beautiful portrait of the Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna, albums, photographs, books from Grand Duke Dmitri's library and more.

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 23 April, 2013


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:33 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 23 April 2013 6:45 AM EDT
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Wednesday, 30 January 2013
Russia's Largest Collection of Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich Memorabilia
Topic: Dmitri Pavlovich, GD

Tsarskoye Selo now holds Russia’s largest collection of belongings of Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich donated to the Museum by Michael Romanoff Ilyinsky, Dmitri’s grandson.

Michael Romanoff Ilyinsky is a great-grandson of Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich (who was born at Tsarskoye Selo). His grandfather Dmitri Pavlovich (1891–1942) was a grandson to Alexander II and a cousin to Nicholas II. Michael lives in the U.S.A. and keeps a large family archive which includes the library, photographs and personal belongings of his grandfather. He became one of the first members of the Tsarskoye Selo Friends Society when it was founded in 2006. For the past years, Michael has donated to our museum a Fabergé photograph frame, opera glasses, silver shot cups, a cigarette case and other objects that belonged to Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich.

His latest generous donations include books from Dmitri’s library, such as a 1893 edition of Alexander Pushkin's novel in verse Eugene Onegin (Gautier Publishers, Moscow), boasting a great number of engraved illustrations and Dmitri’s bookplate, which is very rare in Russia; the No.2 on it shows how precious the book was to its holder. Another valuable addition is Tsarskoye Selo during the Reign of Empress Elizabeth Petrovna, the famous book of 1910 by Alexandre N. Benois. This edition has a typographically printed No.10 on the title page, which proves it was one of the first 10 copies published for the Imperial family members.

Besides those unique books, our collection has received A Book of Notes for 1878 with engravings by the F.A. Brockhaus firm; a ten-volumed Armorial of the Russian Empire (gold-edged); the Paris-published memoirs of Olga Paley and the reminiscences of Dmitri’s sister, Maria; a watercolour portrait of the mounted young Dmitri; an album of Dmitri’s photographs from 1941 and lots of other pictures reflecting various moments of his life in emigration.

According to Dr. Iraida K. Bott, Tsarskoye Selo’s Deputy Director for Science and Education, ‘The photos show Dmitri was still fond of sports and active pastime in his latter years. He liked yachts and golf, as well as hunting and dogs. Some shots have him together with celebrities like Feodor Chaliapin, or surrounded by elegant and interesting people in Paris,London, Monte Carlo and Davos, having la dolce vita, a full-fledged life of a private individual – the life he had dreamt of, as he wrote once in his journal. Of the materials we have got, particularly noteworthy is an album of newspaper clips Dmitri gathered for years, picking the information interesting to him, including that on the Soviet Russia. It’s what we have yet to study and analyze, which will probably help us know and understand Dmitri better, for there’s nothing we know of his life in the 1920s–1940s’.

© Tsarskoye Selo State Museum-Preserve. 30 January, 2013

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:56 AM EST
Updated: Wednesday, 30 January 2013 8:01 AM EST
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Monday, 30 July 2012
The Romanovs and the Olympic Games
Topic: Dmitri Pavlovich, GD


One of the first members of world royalty to participate in the modern Olympic Games was the Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich—the grandson of Emperor Alexander II and cousin of Emperor Nicholas II.

As a child, Dmitri was weak and sickly; however, this did not prevent him from enlisting in the army as a guardsman. It was at the 1912 Olympic Games held at Stockholm, Sweden that he became a participant. He entered in the equestrian events: first in the individual show jumping competition, and then in the team competition. In the individual competition he finished in fifth place, and in the team competition in ninth place.

Grand Duke Dmitri returned to Russia without laurels, but to his credit as an organizer of sporting events, he showed himself to be bright and enthusiastic. Not only was he the president and driving force behind many other sports clubs, he became the pioneer of the Olympic Movement in Tsarist Russia.

The first Russian Olympic Games were held at Kiev from 20-25 August, 1913. Prizes were awarded to the winners from the grand duke’s own personal fortune. The outbreak of World War One in 1914 brought an end to the Russian Olympic Movement.

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 30 July, 2012


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:46 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 31 July 2012 6:49 PM EDT
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