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Saturday, 11 October 2014
Memorial Plaque to Prince Oleg Konstantinovich Unveiled at Ostashevo
Topic: Oleg Konstantinovich, Prince

On October 3rd, a memorial plaque was unveiled at the Church of St. Oleg Bryansky, the family church of Grand Duke Konstantine Konstantinovich at their estate in the village Ostashevo, situated near Moscow. The plaque marked the 100th anniversary of the burial of Prince Oleg Konstantinovich, who served in the Life Guards Hussar Regiment, and who died 100 years ago from injuries received in battle during the First World War. He was buried in Ostashevo on October 3, 1914. 

The Church of St. Oleg Bryansky was built on the banks of the Ruza River in the western part of the estate park as a tomb for Prince Oleg Konstantinovich, and for future use as a mausoleum for other family members. The young prince was very fond of this quiet secluded corner of the park in the suburban estate of his father Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich, honorary member of the Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society (IOPS). Oleg had expressed a desire to be buried in this spot, and after his death, Emperor Nicholas II granted special permission for the prince’s burial at Ostashevo, and not in the Peter and Paul Cathedral in St. Petersburg, the traditional burial place of members of the Russian Imperial family. 

Prince Oleg Konstantinovich (27 November (O.S. 15 November), 1892 - 12 October (O.S. 29 September), 1914) died in hospital in Vilna (now Vilnius, Estonia), his body was transported by train to Ostashevo. At the funeral, along with other family members was Grand Duchess Elizabeth Fyodorovna, the chairwoman of IOPS.

Completed in late 1916, the church was never sanctified before the Revolution. In the 1920s, the famous art historian, Alexei Nikolaevich Grech visited the estate and later described the state of the church-tomb in his book, Crown Estates (1932). Grech was shocked by the destruction. He noted that “someones' hands had diligently destroyed the foundation stones, as well as the names which were engraved on the graves." In recent years, the church was transferred to the Moscow diocese, and since last year liturgies have been carried out on a regular basis.

On October 3rd, 2014 - one hundred years after his funeral - Prince Oleg Konstantinovich was honoured with a Divine Liturgy, which was headed by Abbot Seraphim (St. Nicholas), dean of the churches of Volokolamsk District, co-served by Archpriest Igor (Bondarev), of the Transfiguration Church. 

After the Liturgy, Fr Seraphim gave a sermon on the life and significance of the wartime feats of Prince Oleg Konstantinovich and inaugurated a memorial plaque dedicated to the 100th anniversary of his tragic death. Then Abbot Seraphim and Archpriest Igor served a requiem for the dead soldier, Prince Oleg. The worship service was attended by guests from Moscow, St. Petersburg, Bryansk, Klina and other villages and towns of the Moscow region. 

Members of the church memorial event then went to Ostashevo Center for Art and Leisure, where a round table discussion was held in memory of Prince Oleg Konstantinovich. There was also an exhibition dedicated to the 100th anniversary of his death. Initiator of the roundtable M.V. Zaporina opened the round table by reciting lines from the diary of Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich in which he bids farewell to his son, followed by recollections of his funeral and burial. Other speakers included A.V. Shchuseva and M.A. Obukhov who talked about the history and construction of the church-tomb on the estate and the creators of Ostashevo, S.N. Smirnov and M. Peretyatkovich.
 
For more information on Prince Oleg Konstantinovich, please refer to the following article:

Prince Oleg Konstantinovich: Romanov Casualty of World War One


© Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society and Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 11 October, 2014
 

 

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 8:16 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 11 October 2014 10:29 AM EDT
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Tuesday, 5 August 2014
Prince Oleg Konstantinovich: Romanov Casualty of World War One
Topic: Oleg Konstantinovich, Prince

Prince Oleg Konstantinovich 1892-1914
 
A prince of Imperial blood, Oleg Konstantinovich Romanov was born in St. Petersburg on November 27 (November 15, Julian calendar), 1892. His father was Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich, the president of the Imperial Academy of Sciences, director of all cadet schools and a famous poet known by the pseudonym “K.R.” and his mother was known in Russia as Grand Duchess Elizaveta Mavrikiyevna (née Princess Elizabeth Auguste Marie Agnes, daughter of the Prince Moritz of Saxe-Altenburg and Princess Augusta of Saxe-Meiningen).

Since childhood Romanov was fond of literature and music. In 1910, he graduated from the Polotsk Cadet Corps but had to study at home due to poor health. He was the first member from the Romanov family to receive a civilian education.

In 1913 Oleg graduated from the Imperial Alexander Lyceum with a silver medal. His graduation paper “Feofan Prokopovich as a Lawyer” won him a Pushkin medal for scholarly and literary distinction.

While studying at the Lyceum in 1911, he published a collection of Alexander Pushkin’s hand-written manuscripts, The Pushkin Manuscripts. I. Autographs of the Pushkin Museum of the Imperial Alexander Lyceum.

In 1913 he was conscripted into the Imperial Guard Hussar Regiment with the rank of cornet. Shortly after, he became engaged to Princess Nadezhda Petrovna, daughter of Grand Duke Peter Nikolayevich.

In the summer of 1914, the Imperial Orthodox Palestinian Society sent Oleg on a mission to Bari, Italy, to negotiate the construction of a Russian Orthodox Church and an almshouse in the city.

Soon after he returned from this trip, in August 1914 he went to the battlefront along with his brothers. He served in the Hussar Regiment as part of Khan Nakhichevansky’s Mounted Unit along with his brothers Gavriil and Igor.

Initially he was posted to the regiment’s headquarters, but in September 1914 he insisted on being transferred to the 2nd Squadron.

Prince Oleg took part in hostilities on the Northwestern Front, fighting in the famous battle of Kaushen; the broad offensive towards Konigsberg (present-day Kaliningrad); and near the Deima River and the cities of Tapiau and Shirvindt.

On October 10 (September 27, Julian calendar), Russian patrols discovered an enemy party not far from the village of Pilvishki in the vicinity of Vladislavov in the Suwalki Province. They started shooting at the Germans who retreated only to run into the Hussar vanguard party. Prince Oleg led his regiment as they pursued the enemy. The Germans were hacked to death or taken prisoner. As Oleg approached the Germans, one of the wounded riders drew a carbine and shot him in the belly at close range.

On October 11 (September 28, Julian calendar), a seriously wounded Oleg was brought to a hospital in Vilno (present-day Vilnius, Lithuania). He was operated on but the blood poisoning could not be stopped. On October 12 (September 29, Julian calendar) Prince Oleg died in the arms of his father.

He was awarded for his combat achievements with the Order of St. George Fourth Class for courage and bravery in fighting and defeating the Germans. Oleg was the only member of the Romanov family to die in action in World War I.

On October 14 (October 1, Julian calendar), 1914 Archbishop Tikhon of Vilno and Lithuania (Bellavin), the soon-to-be Patriarch Tikhon, conducted a funeral service for Prince Oleg Konstantinovich at the St. Michael Church. He was buried at the Ostashevo family estate in the Moscow Province.
 


In memory of her son, Grand Dutchess Elizaveta Mavrikiyevna instituted a silver medal award for the best domestic literature written at the Imperial Alexander Lyceum.

The Vilno grammar school, which had been converted into the hospital where Prince Oleg Romanov died, was named after him in spring 1915. 
 
© RIA Novosti and Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 05 August, 2014
 

 

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 4:13 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 5 August 2014 5:05 AM EDT
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