tsar of life

The most spectacular attempt on the tsar´s life took place in February 1880. In a daring move, Stepan Khalturin, a terrorist who had insinuated himself into the Winter Palace in the guise of a carpenter, slowly smuggled in over a hundred pounds of dynamite for the sole purpose of killing Alexander II. The explosion was set to go off at the moment the imperial family was to sit down to dinner. On the appointed day, Khalturin detonated the charge and escaped. But because tsarina´s brother and nephew arrived late, none of the imperial family was injured or killed by the powerful blast. The damage created was devastating. Grand Duke Vladimir rushed to the dining room, which was enveloped in smoke. Broken china and glass were strewn all over, windows blown out, and a large gaping hole in the wall attested to the explosion´s force. The area below the dining room, which housed Finnish sentries, bore the brunt of the blast. Over 125 pounds of dynamite destroyed two-foot-thick walls and extensively damaged the large guard room, which measured sixty feet by twenty feet. There, the powerful explosion killed eleven guards and wounded forty-four. Sasha [Tsesarevich Alexander] and Vladimir hurried to help the sentries picking their way through blood and debris. “It was a heartbreaking picture,” recalled the tsarevich, “and I will never forget that horror in my life!”

…  “A poisonous gas filled the room, suffocating us, as well as adding to our horror … How can I possibly describe the agony of mind we suffered, expecting, as we did, at any moment another explosion beneath us! It is impossible - impossible for me to tell or for you to conceive. The impending fear almost made our hearts stop beating as, silent, and motionless, we awaited our doom,” [Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna] recounted. “When the echoes of explosion died away, a dead silence succeeded, which, united with the darkness prevailing, so dense as almost to be felt, conduced to render our helpless position still more painful and unendurable. We dared not move … Out of darkness came the clear, calm voice of the Czar,” who said, “my children, let us pray!” Hearing his voice also “relieved the awful strain on our nerves, and brought comfort to our hearts.” The family sank to their knees sobbing. “How long we remained so, I really don´t know,”noted Miechen. “It seemed an eternity of anguish before the guards appeared with candles, little expecting to find us alive.”

Julia Gelardi: From Splendor to Revolution


Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich -  Judgement - 2007

Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich - Triptych “The Tsar’s Calvary”
Farewell to the emperor with the troops - 2004

Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich - Palace grenadiers

Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich - Stokhid. The Last Battle of the Life Guards Preobrazhensky Regiment 1916 

Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich - Umbrella

Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich - Princely Sword

Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich - Silence of the king

Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich - The choice of faith

Ryzhenko Pavel Viktorovich - Easter in Paris


Books  - Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente

“You keep calling him that. The Tsar of Life.”

“That’s what he is.” And am I the Tsarina or Life, then? half her heart asked. The other half answered, Not even for a moment were you ever queen.


“When the world was young the seven Tsars and Tsaritsas divided it amongst themselves. The Tsar of the Birds chose the air and the clouds and the winds. The Tsaritsa of Salt chose cities with all their bustle and heedless hurtling. The Tsar of Water chose the seas and lakes, bays and oceans. The Tsaritsa of Night chose all the dark places and the places between, the thresholds, the shadows. The Tsaritsa of the Length of an Hour chose sorrow and misfortune as her territory, so that where anyone suffers, there is her country. This left only the Tsar of Life and the Tsar of Death to argue over what remained. For a time, they were content to quarrel over individual trees, stones, and streams, giving each other great whacks with that scythe which Death wields to cut down all that lives , and that hammer which Life wields, which builds up useful and lovely things such as fences and churches and potato distilleries. However, Life and Death are brothers, and their ambition is precisely equal.”

Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente


LIST OF ROMANOV RULERS: #1 - Tsar Michael I of Russia (12 July 1596 - 13 July 1645)

“On these difficult days, a boy was brought on a sledge across the dirty March roads to the charred walls of Moscow – a plundered and ravaged heap of ashes, only freed at great cost from the Polish occupants. A frightened boy elected tsar of Muscovy, at the advice of the patriarch, by impoverished boyars, empty-handed merchants and hard men from the north and the Volga. The boy prayed and wept, looking out of the window of his coach in fear and dejection at the ragged, frenzied crowds who had come to greet him at the gates of Moscow. The Russian people had little faith in the new tsar, but life had to go on.”


Officer’s cuirass from 1814 of the 2nd Life Guards on display at the Horse Guards museum in London

This was worn for the state visit of Tsar Alexander 1st of Russia. Varnished with black lacquer and was created for the Hyde Park review witnessed by the Tsar. The cuirasses were never worn again much to annoyance of the officers who had to buy the uniforms themselves.

Prince Nicholas Borisovch Youssoupoff inherited a love for the arts from his grandfather. He was a great lover of music. He took lessons from famous Belgian violinist and composer, Henry Francois Vieuxtemps. Prince Nicholas would compose and play the violin so beautiful many of his works were published in Russia and across Europe.

He also had a love for genealogy. He would publish a two volume set “About genus Princes Yusupov”, detailing his family history and including historical correspondence between his family and their sovereigns over several generations. 

When his father, Prince Boris died in 1849, Prince Nicholas inherited his vast family fortune. He graduated from the University of Saint Peterburg in 1850 and immediately entered court life. Tsar Nicholas I (was his godfather) had him placed in his office staff as collegiate secretary. 

coo1cats  asked:

hi!! I started researching the Romanovs and now I sort of want to work backwards and look into Russian history in general. Do you have any resource recommendations? Books or websites? I already own some of Robert Massie's books, Candace Fleming's, and Sarah Miller's Lost Crown. Thank you so much!!

Recommended Books to Name a Few:

  • The Resurrection of the Romanovs: Anastasia, Anna Anderson, and the World’s Greatest Royal Mystery by Greg King
  • The Diary of Olga Romanov by Helen Azar
  • From Splendor to Revolution: The Romanov Women, 1847-1928 by Julia P. Gelardi
  • The Last Tsar: The Life and Death of Nicholas II by Edvard Radzinsky
  • The Court of the Last Tsar: Pomp, Power and Pageantry in the Reign of Nicholas II by Greg King
  • All books by Charlotte Zeepvat

Websites You Should Totally Check:


Nicholas II of Russia in the uniform of the Life-Guards 4th The Imperial Family’s Rifle Regiment by Olga
В униформе 4-го стрелкового Императорской фамилии лейб-гвардии полка, 1912