Author Topic: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated  (Read 267705 times)

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Sunny

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #45 on: November 20, 2004, 04:48:20 AM »
Dear griffh and Helen,  whenever I have read what is clearly slander regarding Alexandra or Nicholas, I marvel at the long life of Bolshevik "public relations".
It took on a life of it's own, and decades later is still repeated as gospel on the subject. Like so many other things, the truth of the matter is beneath the surface of the world's chatter.

For those with a sincere interest in the IF, a little research will tell the true tale, while those with an "agenda" continue to parrot what serves their purpose.

Regards,

Sunny

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #46 on: November 20, 2004, 09:17:52 AM »
The part about "love and kisses" is true, but totally misinterpreted.
Rasputin gave all of his close friends the traditional Russian "2 kisses" one on each side of the cheek. Thats what Alexandra was referring to... Vyroubova writes about how startled she was the very first time she met him and he kissed her twice like that...

rskkiya

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #47 on: November 20, 2004, 10:01:03 AM »
    We are failing to remember just what a "neo victorian" Alix really was! She often wrote of her deep love and passion for people that by 21st century standards she only knew as friends - yet we cannot conclude that she was some sort of sex crazy maniac because of it.
   People of a certain generation and a certain class tended to write in a very flowery language to one another in those days! It meant nothing more than a rather colourfull expression of affection. On a similar note consider the common use of the "F" word in so much of modern conversation today... it's a sad correlation, but accurate  :(.
   I am also in complete agreement regarding Rasputin's old fashioned "typically Russian" greeting. We may just be reading too much into a lot of this.

rskkiya

Offline Elisabeth

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #48 on: November 20, 2004, 10:07:17 AM »
Quote
   
    People of a certain generation and a certain class tended to write in a very flowery language to one another in those days! It meant nothing more than a rather colourfull expression of affection. On a similar note consider the common use of the "F" word in so much of modern conversation today... it's a sad correlation, but accurate  :(.
    


What a witty and insightful remark, Rskkiya!
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Elisabeth »
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Mgmstl

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #49 on: November 20, 2004, 12:11:17 PM »
I have great sympathy for Alexandra in many issues.
My problem lies with the apologists who constantly want
to sanctify Alexandra and her motives & her actions.  

Alexandra was educated and guided by QV, coming from
this sort of constitutional monarchy, I find it difficult to
understand her turn to the right.  To encourage Nicholas
to be Peter The Great, Ivan The Terrible..etc.  Instead of
understanding the real problems facing them.

She isolated herself from the court & from the people,
she did little to endear herself to either faction, which
she should have been smart enough to see that as an
empress consort much more was expected from her as
the leader of Russian Society.  

However no one deserves the brutal execution that she
& her family received, and as we saw in France, when an
opressed people rise up, the extreme can often overtake the moderate, and revenge becomes the modus operandi.  Nicholas's regime was opressive &
the imperial couple often fought reform & progress.

I am not trying to be cold, or ignoring the situations she
found herself in, and the cards that were dealt her in
life.  She should have KNOWN BETTER than to let that
vile Rasputin into her life & once the scandal arose she
alone was the one responsible for it continuing.  

Alexandra was not an admirable woman, unlike her
Aunt Victoria, her Grandmother, Queen Victoria, or her
mother, Grand Duchess Alice, or her mother in law
Marie Feodorvna, IMO.  She chose a course that was
to put her on path with disaster, the sad thing is that
unlike Marie Antoinette, she had people advising her
that she needed to step away from politics & power &
Rasputin.  She unfortunately made her choices and
unfortunately they weren't right.  

I think Radzinsky is incorrect on some of what he writes
on in this book on Rasputin.  Alexandra was misguided,
and unfortunately the choices of her & her husband
brought down the empire, for that history has the right
to judge their actions.  They were not perfect people &
we need to get past the extreme on either side of
iconization or slander.  

Offline Johnny

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #50 on: November 21, 2004, 08:44:58 AM »
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In the two telegrams in 1916, sent from Tsarskoe Selo to Pokrovskoe, there is one dated April 9 in which she asks Rasputin to pray for herself and Nicholas on that bright day and ends the telegram with love and kisses.  In the other telegram on Dec. 2 she says that he has not written her and she misses him terribly and to come soon and pray for Nicholas and ends with kisses.    

I decided to look up the entry for Dec. 2, 1916 in "Life Long Passion," and I found an entry from Nicholas' diary for Dec. 2, 1916 Tsarskoe Selo.

"In the morning before my walk I recieved Voeikov.  From 11 to one received Trepov, Bark, Polovstov, and Shakhovsky.  Walked next to Alix's chair-a-banc.  Read.  We spent the evening at Ania's talking to Grigory."

Other than Radzinsky's slip up here, which is totally understandable given the rapid fire series of events in 1916, Alexandra seems to be the victim of so much malice and disinformation.  

Could it be that Radzinsky is actually right? It might be that one of the sources [possibly Nicholas' diary is still using the old Russian calendar. If that's the case then the two calendars are off by a couple of weeks.  So your Dec2 and Radzinsky's Dec 2 can be 11 days apart. That can mean that soon after Alix complained to Rasputin about not coming to visit her he did come and both Nicholas and Alexandra met with him. I am not suggesting that is the case, but it is a possibility.
Recently I had a similar problem with one of Nicholas' letters which I couldn't find in the book of his letters because of the same reason.
Татьяна: Кто ты - мой ангел ли хранитель?

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #51 on: November 21, 2004, 10:53:53 AM »
Spiridovitch, in his Rasputin bio says that on Nov. 26 (old style) Rasputin was in Petersburg, and Trepov, acting on behalf of Gen Mossolov, tried to persuade Rasputin to accept a large lump sum of money and a large monthly pension in exchange for no longer meddling in political affairs and to permanently return to Siberia,  and that Nicholas and Alexandra went to Vyroubova's house on evening of Dec. 3 (old style) to meet and pray with Rasputin prior to Nicholas leaving the next day for GHQ. So, we know where Rasputin was during that period.

Clearly, Radzinsky was WRONG as Rasputin was no where near Pokrovskoe at that time.  Also, OS dates are 13 days BEHIND new dates, so Dec 2 OS is Dec. 15 NS, and we KNOW Rasputin was in Petersburg then.

added: I went back and read all of November 1916. This was the month of the Protopoov affair. Rasputin was in Petersburg the entire time. Alexandra saw him regularly all month.
Radzinsky was totally wrong.
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rskkiya

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #52 on: November 21, 2004, 12:03:04 PM »
Quote
I have great sympathy for Alexandra in many issues.
My problem lies with the apologists who constantly want
to sanctify Alexandra and her motives & her actions.
  



Hello
   I do agree with much that you have commented on- and while I have my doubts about Alix as an entirely 'perfect person",  the Russian Orthodox Church has (for good or ill) declaired the entire family to be saints or "Passion bearers'.

rskkiya

Offline Georgiy

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #53 on: November 21, 2004, 02:08:53 PM »
Of course it is quite normal to put "Tseluyu" (I kiss you) at the end of a letter. If people read anything into it, it says more about the reader than the writer IMO.

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #54 on: November 21, 2004, 02:24:17 PM »
Read above,
The discussion is moot, as these telegrams are fakes and NOT sent by Alexandra.

Offline griffh

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #55 on: November 21, 2004, 11:28:38 PM »
I am so grateful that our administrator's research that backed up my very limited research.  As a new comer I often feel a bit green.    

I think that my point in wanting to dialog on this topic is that, without wanting to make a saint out of Alexandra, in the past, it has been easier for historians to pull down Alexandra than it has been for them to really deal with the complexity of the period.  And while there are hopeful signs, such as the Greg's wonderful biography, and more recently Carol N.'s book which is really one of the first sympathic portraits of Alexandra, it does not seem as though anyone has been able to approach the subject with the kind of comprehensive compassion, humor and honesty that Pope-Hennesy was able to do when he wrote Queen Mary's life.  

Queen Mary's strengths and weaknesses are so similar to Alexandra's, the extreme shyness, the distain of pomp, the strong loyalty to the monarchy, the philanthropic impulse to help those who are suffering, the frugalness and at the same time a love of beauty, a regalness without being ultra-fashionable, and most of all the ablilty to be a true friend and to deeply value friendship.  

Of course Alexandra had great personal beauty which made her into something of an icon.  (As late as 1909, when Balanchine was a little cupid in the Imperial Ballet, Alexandra asked to have him come up and sit in her lap during the performance and he said that she had the glamour of Grace Kelly).  

Pope-Hennesy was able to give such a comprehensive picture of Queen Mary that dealt with the complexities of her role as Queen in such a balanced way, that one could understand who she really was without having to resort to flattery or distain.      

I know that it is much more difficult to write about Czarist Russia because one has to deal with belief in many things that the twentieth century found fradulent, like the possibiliy of spiritual healing.  Belief or disbelief in spiritual healing, alone, has an enormous impact on the way one looks at Rasputin and Alexandra.  

And, as someone brought up in this discussion, there is eighty years of anti-Czarist Soviet propaganda to contend with, which cast everyone but the Communists in the role of degenerate, cruel, depraved, and frivilous, villians of the people.

But, take something like the German spy mania that swept the civilized world during WWI.  It caused Americans of German decent to be axe-murdered in the mid-west, it banished German culture, the classical masters of German music, art, pets, foods, and even Christmas trees all to vanish from Allied countries during the war.    

The fact that Alexandra's brother-in-law, Louis Mountbatten lost his position in the British Navy and his title to the anti-german war mainia in England during the WWI, or the fact that Alexandra's cousin Sophie of Greece and her family almost lost their lives to arsons who burned down one of their palaces because of war histeria, has never been mentioned to give context to what Alexandra was facing at the same time in Russia.  

The anti-german hostility against Alexandra seems to be explained, instead, as something she brought on herself through unwise inquiries about the condition of German prisioners of war or Rasputins dubious connection with possible German agents.  In fact, Alexandra did not have to do anything, exept breath, in order to the victim of war histeria, any more than Sophie of Greece or Louis Mountbatten.  

At least the German haters in Greece got some satisfaction in burning down a palace and almost killing the Greek King and Queen, and the German-haters in England found some satisfaction in destroying Louis Mountbatten's honor and life ambition and lowering his rank, but the German haters in Russia could not dislodge Alexandra.  It would take a palace revolution to do that.            
 
   

Offline Silja

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #56 on: November 22, 2004, 03:49:16 PM »
Many times I have read now that people disagree with  the decision of the Russian Orthodox Church to canonize the Romanovs because they weren't so very perfect at all. I think one should always take into consideration that churches, be they Orthodox or Catholic do not canonize people because they were "perfect people" in the modern colloquial sense of the word "saint", but because they died for their faith and lived an exemplary religious life from the point of view of those respective churches.

Just mentioning this here because I think one should always be clear what one actually means when using certain terms to avoid misunderstandings.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2009, 01:45:48 AM by Alixz »

rskkiya

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #57 on: November 22, 2004, 05:33:28 PM »
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I think one should always take into consideration that churches, be they Orthodox or Catholic do not canonize people because they were "perfect people" in the modern colloquial sense of the word "saint", but because they died for their faith and lived an exemplary religious life from the point of view of those respective churches.

Just mentioning this here because I think one should always be clear what one actually means when using certain terms to avoid misunderstandings.


Well put Silja...
  But as someone struggling with converting to Orthodoxy, my problem lies in the fact that they did NOT "die for their faith" - They died for politically expeciency!
   No revolutionary - as far as I know- ever said to them "Abandon Orthodoxy and we'll let you go!" so they weren't really Christian martyrs as I understand the concept ...
(I am honestly not meaning to be difficult about this and  if any Orthodox believer can clarify this for me I would be very greatful! )

rskkiya

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #58 on: November 22, 2004, 05:46:23 PM »
Perhaps someone better at it than I can explain the difference betwen "passion bearers" and martyrs.
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Offline griffh

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Re: Alexandra - Slandered and Hated
« Reply #59 on: November 23, 2004, 02:01:03 PM »
I am grateful for the caution about using the word saint.  That is very helpful.  I used the word in a secular way, meaning that I did not want to gloss over anything.  

The question about cannonization is really interesting.  I believe that individuals are cannonized because they have refused to abandon their faith in God even when all human effort to save them has failed.  A perfect example is Saint Dymphna.    

Saint Dymphna was fourteen when her mother died. When her father Damon went insane because of his distress over the loss of his wife, his evil advisers told him to marry his own daughter. Dymphna fled from her castle in Ireland together with St. Gerebran, her confessor and two other friends.

Damon found them in a forest near Gheel, Belgium. He gave orders that the priest's head be cut off. Then Damon tried to persuade his daughter to return to Ireland with him. When she refused, he drew his sword and struck off her head. She was then only fifteen years of age. Dymphna received the crown of martyrdom in defense of her purity about the year 620.  

Dymphna was cannonized, not for her adherence to a religious doctrine, but for her love for God that was even more sacred to her than the sanctity of human life.  

I believe this is why Nicholas and Alexandra were cannonized.  Certainly the Empress trust in God was more sacred to her than the sancitity of human life.  

Thank you again for that helpful point about using the word saint.  I forget the broad perspective of individuals who read this website and your guideness is really helpful.