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Messages - LisaDavidson

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Imperial Succession and the Throne / Re: Who is the rightful heir?
« on: March 07, 2004, 08:19:29 PM »
Rob: I responded to this contention on another thread. Those who are saying that the line is excluded due to Maria Pavlovna's late conversion are unfamiliar with the Fundamental Law.

All of the Romanovs in exile with the exception of the Nicholievichi recognized Kirill as the legitimate heir once it was certain that Michael, Nicholas, and Alexis were dead. Maria Feodorovna also was apparently unfamiliar with the Law and felt her opinion on this mattered in a legal sense. It didn't.

Rob - with all due respect, Spidirovitch may have been a Russian, but he apparently was not familiar with the Fundamental Law of the Russian Empire. Kirill's succession rights were never in question - as evidenced by his appearence in court circulars as a member of the dynasty until they stopped being published.

Maria Pavlovna was permitted by her father in law to continue practicing her religion because at the time, the male line of Alexander III appeared very strong with 3 living sons, and it seemed unlikely her children would ever succeed to the throne.

However, due to George Alexandrovich's early death and the family's failure to marry off Michael properly, and most importantly, Alexandra's birthing so many daughters, by the time a sickly Alexis was born - with no more children coming - all of this changed. It was at this time that Maria P converted, but it wasn't to gain her three sons the succession rights they already had. Rather, it was a smart political move on her part to ensure when her sons did become heirs, there would be no questions as to her religion. Of course, I don't think even she envisioned the situation that elevated them to that status.

Imperial Succession and the Throne / Re: Who is the rightful heir?
« on: March 07, 2004, 07:04:06 PM »
It really depends on who you talk to. The "heirs" most discussed are George and Nicholas Romanovich.

The later is the head of the RFA, and considers himself head of the family as opposed to the dynasty, which he believes ended with Michael's manifesto in 1917. The RFA has an orderly succession which will eventually go to the sons of Andrei Andreivich, who presently live in Northern California. None of these sons as yet has sons and none lives in Russia or has plans to move there.

George's viability as heir depends on three important factors. First, the strength of his claim depends upon his making an "equal marriage". If he fails to make one or if he does not marry at all, his claim will be pretty worthless. Second, since his claim is the most traditional, he must have sons to have a viable claim because he has no siblings. Third, he must establish a presence in Russia, which I understand he currently cannot afford to do. If George meets these, he has the best chance of everyone.

I personally favor the Ilyinskys. They have been asked back twice by the Russian people. Grand Duke Dmitry was asked back after the Revolution and refused. His son Paul Ilyinsky was asked back in the 1990's and refused. Paul has two sons, neither of whom currently has a son, but the Ilyinsky claim is strong for several reasons.

One, Dmitri Pavlovich (b. 1954) is now the senior male heir of the line of Holstein-Gottorp-Romanov. Second, there are numerous Ilyinskys, not just one. Third, they are the only branch of the family that has maintained excellent relations with all other branches of the family since the Revolution. They have refused to participate in the family squabbles. Fourth, they are well established in America and do not need to be claimants in order to fill otherwise empty lives.

Just my not so humble opinion!

The Final Chapter / Re: New DNA article...
« on: March 07, 2004, 06:27:37 PM »
I have also shared this information on the atr newsgroup, but for those who don't subscribe, I have the following:

Around the same time as the Yekaterinburg remains were being tested and before the Duke of Edinburgh blood sample, an American family collected a blood sample from Katherine De Silva, who is also a descendant as are Prince Philip and Empress Alexandra, of Princess Alice of Hesse. Katherine DS's mtDNA was sequenced at Brown University. It exactly matched the reputed mtDNA of Alexandra and her 3 daughters AND it exactly matched Philip's AND exactly matched the other samples submitted in Gill and Ivanov's tests. According to scientists I know, these repeated results strengthen the identification of Alexandra and her daughters and likely mean the finger is not Elizabeth's.

Greg and Penny are Greg King and Penny Wilson, authors of the Fate of the Romanovs. They also post on this board.

As to Peter Kurth's sources, why don't you write him if they're not noted in his text?

Bob Atchison actually viewed the remains before burial. While not a scientist, he has an artist's eye for faces. He told me that Anastasia was definitely one of the sets of remains. I believe him, but that also comes from many years of friendship.

The Imperial Family / Re: What got you interested in the Romanovs?
« on: March 03, 2004, 12:16:04 AM »
In the mid sixties, I was walking through the libary of my middle school when "The Last Grand Duchess" fell off the shelf and on to my head. Of course I checked it out - and I read it in one sitting.

It all started then, over 35 years ago, and my Romanov collection is now spilling into a second bookcase.

The Imperial Family / Re: OTMA's Nursing at WW I
« on: February 23, 2004, 10:59:35 PM »
The Grand Duchess Tatiana Committee was dedicated to helping those who were made refugees by the war. So successful was this committee that the Provisional Government continued its work.

Rasputin / Re: Rasputin's Murder
« on: February 23, 2004, 12:29:06 AM »
Excellent points, all, Janet.

I don't know of a mother or father who would not do all they could to help their child if he or she were ill. I agree that Alix probably knew how bad GIR was when away from the palace. But, since he was helping her son, she chose to overlook his excesses.

Rulers Prior to Nicholas II / Re: Empress Catherine II
« on: February 22, 2004, 10:47:30 PM »
Catherine was certainly a complex person whose character cannot be described in a few short words. Like many women, her achievements are discussed less than her personal life. She was certainly a remarkable ruler for any age and a person of strong appetites.

Her son Paul was not an effective ruler, and their relationship was complex as well, and not a positive nor a very loving one.

Imperial Succession and the Throne / Re: The succession
« on: February 22, 2004, 10:25:52 PM »
After Nicholas in 1917, the succession was:

1. Alexis Nikolievich

we cannot discount the possibility of Alexis having issue if he had inherited the throne

2. Mikhail Alexandrovich - if he outlived his nephew

his son George was excluded from the succession due to his illegitimate birth

3. Kirill Vladimirovich

Romanov and Imperial Russia Links / Re: Does it still exist?
« on: February 21, 2004, 09:36:29 PM »
As far as I know, no, TIRS no longer exist. Ann Brunning, who started TIRS is still around, but I understand her professional committments do not allow her time to continue with TIRS.

The Myth and Legends of Survivors / Re: Did any of the Romanovs survive?
« on: February 15, 2004, 11:43:03 PM »
Regarding File on the Tsar: it has its place in Romanov scholarship in that in the West, because prior to its publication, there was never any critical study of the Sokolov Report. For many years, writers just continued to cite the Report as definitive without question.

While the book contains many mistakes, it did successfully challenge some of the questionable forensics. For example,  the long held belief that all the bodies could have been quickly destroyed by fire in the forest is absolutely demolished.

In my opinion, it's worth reading, but with the fingers over the nostrils for those parts that won't bear scrutiny.

The Imperial Family / Re: Exhibitions
« on: February 10, 2004, 10:15:00 PM »
I wish I knew what kind of artifacts. All I know is that the exhibition is being uncrated in Santa Fe (from Tsarskoe Selo)in May - I have been invited to be there. I am told there are many pessessions that belonged to the last Imperial Family.

Olga likely had several young men she was interested in. During the War, she wrote about "Metia, the Golden One" and there were also indications she was interested in Crown Prince Alexander of Serbia.

None of these went beyond a very innocent phase - so I'm not sure "first love" is a suitable designation.

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