Author Topic: AA and the Russian Language  (Read 60668 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Penny_Wilson

  • Boyar
  • **
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
    • kingandwilson
AA and the Russian Language
« on: March 07, 2005, 12:46:24 AM »
In response to a post from Annie on one of these threads a few days ago, I said I would draw up a list of people who testified that Anna Anderson/Fraulein Unbekannt was entirely and fluently conversant in Russia.  I am still compiling a general list of those people, but in the meantime, here is a shorter list.  Just three people.  All of them came out in opposition to Anna Anderson, yet all of them testified that she spoke and understood Russian:

Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna
Princess Nina Georgievna of Russia
Pierre Gilliard

So there you go, Annie --  and I went you one better by giving you three people who didn't recognize AA as AN, yet testified that she understood and spoke Russian.  So is your contention now that Olga Alexandrovna and Gilliard are liars, or is it your contention that they were somehow mistaken?  And if either of these, what does that say about
their veracity regarding their claims about the case in general?
"Don't do anything by half. If you love someone, love them with all your soul. When you go to work, work your ass off. When you hate someone, hate them until it hurts."  -- A Piece of Good Advice

Sometimes the truth hurts. And sometimes it feels real good. -- Henry Rollins

marina

  • Guest
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2005, 06:01:02 AM »
 It is true that AA understood russian but rarely spoke it because it was the language of her torturers. But I wonder why Pierre Gilliard changed his opinion. Somebody asked it him? It is hard to believe that but there are so much things hard to believe in this world... :(

Offline Annie

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 4757
    • View Profile
    • Anna Anderson Exposed!
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2005, 06:12:13 AM »
Where did you get this info, it runs contrary to their personal testimonies. There is nothing written or recorded of her speaking it, why? Why is her refusal to speak Russian so famous, why was it used by her naysayers to attack her case?

But again, it doesn't matter whether Franziska Schanskowska spoke what language or not, she still wasn't Anastasia.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Annie »

Offline Denise

  • Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 792
  • Anneliese: Historian in training
    • View Profile
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2005, 07:22:07 AM »
Quote

But again, it doesn't matter whether Franziska Schanskowska spoke what language or not, she still wasn't Anastasia.


That is to say, Annie, IF AA was FS.  All we know is that she was related through the maternal line to KM. It does seem likely, but this thread is for AA and the  Russian language.

Also, I have heard that AA would be spoken to in Russian yet answer in another language--proof that she understood the language.

Offline Helen_Azar

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 7472
  • Coming up Fall 2015: Tatiana's diaries and letters
    • View Profile
    • War-time diaries of Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna Romanov
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2005, 07:46:22 AM »
Quote

Also, I have heard that AA would be spoken to in Russian yet answer in another language--proof that she understood the language.


It is always a lot easier to understand a language than to speak it. For example, for myself, I can understand Spanish fairly well, but I can't really speak it other than uttering a few words. I can also understand Russian very well, but sometimes find it difficult to speak. You can often make out the context of what is being said if you understand about half the words, but speaking it is a whole different ball game!  ;)

Offline Annie

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 4757
    • View Profile
    • Anna Anderson Exposed!
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2005, 07:49:55 AM »
Quote

That is to say, Annie, IF AA was FS.  All we know is that she was related through the maternal line to KM. It does seem likely, but this thread is for AA and the  Russian language.


Well, that's a lot, especially in conjuction with the photographic evidence. But even if she wasn't FS, she still wasn't Anastasia.

Quote
Also, I have heard that AA would be spoken to in Russian yet answer in another language--proof that she understood the language.


That's not much for what was supposed to have been someone's native language. What, no common use, no writings, no diaries in Russian? It doesn't sound like she was very comfortable with it. Even if she had been away from it for, what, a whole year and a half, it's not likely she would stop using it. Remember Alexandra continued to speak and correspond in English after being in Russia for 20 years!
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Annie »

Offline Penny_Wilson

  • Boyar
  • **
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
    • kingandwilson
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2005, 10:43:39 AM »
Quote
Where did you get this info, it runs contrary to their personal testimonies. There is nothing written or recorded of her speaking it, why? Why is her refusal to speak Russian so famous, why was it used by her naysayers to attack her case?


I got this information from the trial transcripts.  As for your other questions, I would imagine the answers are now self-evident.

Olga Alexandrovna:

Questioned by Judge Backen in Toronto, June 11, 1959

Backen: While you were with the plaintiff, in what language did you converse?
OA: German.
Backen: Did you ask if she spoke Russian?
OA: Of course, but she apparently did not wish to do so. Backen: Did she not speak Russian at all during your interview?
OA: She spoke a few sentences to Madame Gilliard, but would say no more.
Backen: And was her Russian grammatical?
OA: Yes.
Backen: She said no more in Russian other than a few sentences to Madame Gilliard?
OA: No.  She understood the language, as she answered questions posed to her in Russian in German but, despite my requests, she would not converse with any of us in Russian.

Source: Transcript, A. Anderson v. Barbara, Duchess of Mecklenburg, Oberlandesgericht-Hamburg, No. III, ZPO 139/67, Volume 38

Gilliard:

Questioned by Judge Werkmeister of the Hamburg Tribunal, 1 April, 1958

Werkmeister: During your meetings with the Plantiff, what languages were used?
Gilliard: German.
Werkmeister: Only German?
Gilliard: Well, some English.
Werkmeister: And nothing more?
Gilliard.  No, it's as I wrote in my book [Gilliard had brought with him a copy of his "La Fausse Anastasie"].
Werkmeister: Again, Monsieur Gilliard, the material in your book is not evidence.
Gilliard: But it's what happened.
Werkmeister: And what of the information presented by Dr. Vermehren [Accounts of the meetings, including letters from Danish Ambassador Herluf Zahle that declared AA had spoken in English and in Russian] on this issue?
Gilliard: I don't recall.
Werkmeister: Please try to recall, Monsieur.  Is the evidence presented by Dr. Vermehren on the issue of languages spoken accurate or inaccurate?
Gilliard: She might have replied to my wife in Russian.
Werkmeister: To your wife?
Gilliard: Yes.  During a conversation with the Grand Duchess [Olga Alexandrovna] the claimant interrupted and said something to my wife.
Werkmeister: In Russian?
Gilliard: It has been so long ago...
Werkmeister: Did the Plaintiff say something to your wife in Russian or not, Monsieur?
Gilliard: A sentence perhaps.
Werkmeister: You understand, Monsieur, that the claim has been made that the Plaintiff could not speak Russian?
Gilliard: Yes.
Werkmeister: And is this claim accurate or not?
Gilliard: As I wrote in my book....
Werkmeister: Monsieur, I remind you again, your book is not evidence in this case.
Gilliard: She said something to my wife.
Werkmeister: In what language?
Gilliard: In Russian.
Werkmeister: You heard the Plaintiff speak to your wife in Russian?
Gilliard: Only a sentence.
Werkmeister: But you heard this?
Gilliard: Yes.  But she would not again speak it.
Werkmeister: You have previously stated, Monsieur, that the Plaintiff did not speak or understand Russian.  Do you wish to amend your previous statement?
Gilliard: No.
Werkmeister: Monsieur, may I remind you that you are under oath?  I again ask if you wish to correct your previous statement?
Gilliard: She spoke only one sentence, to my wife.  I do not consider that linguistic ability.
Werkmeister: We are not going to argue semantics, Monsieur.  I believe that portions of the conversation in question took place in Russian?
Gilliard: Yes.
Werkmeister: And the Plaintiff did not engage in this conversation?
Gilliard: She would answer certain questions posed her, but only in German.
Werkmeister: Were these questions posed in Russian, or in German?
Gilliard: Both languages.
Werkmeister: Did the Plaintiff answer questions posed her in Russian in German?
Gilliard: That is so.
Werkmeister: And you say she answered these questions?
Gilliard: Only in German.
Werkmeister: But they were posed her in Russian?
Gilliard: Yes.
Werkmeister: So she understand Russian?
Gilliard: She would not speak it.
Werkmeister: That is not the question, Monsieur, and you have already conceded that she spoke it with your wife. Now, did she understand the Russian language?
Gilliard: Yes.

Source:

Source: Transcript, A. Anderson v. Barbara, Duchess of Mecklenburg, Oberlandesgericht-Hamburg, No. III, ZPO 139/67, Volume 27.

Princess Nina Georgievna:

"Whoever she is, she is no Polish peasant.  She is a lady of good society, and it is not true that she cannot speak Russian."

Source: Princess Nina to Peter Kurth, as quoted in Kurth, 217.


Quote
But again, it doesn't matter whether Franziska Schanskowska spoke what language or not, she still wasn't Anastasia.


Moving the goal-posts, Annie?  You keep repeating that Fraulein Unbekannt/Anna Anderson could not speak or understand Russian -- which would be an item held in common with Franziska Schanzkowska, and therefore a "point" for your "side."  I have now shown this assertion not to be true, and the truth came from people who denied the claim.

You really shouldn't make these continued incorrect assertions about AA when you haven't even done the basic work of reading through the Hamburg transcripts -- which are able to disprove so much of what you contend.
"Don't do anything by half. If you love someone, love them with all your soul. When you go to work, work your ass off. When you hate someone, hate them until it hurts."  -- A Piece of Good Advice

Sometimes the truth hurts. And sometimes it feels real good. -- Henry Rollins

Offline Penny_Wilson

  • Boyar
  • **
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
    • kingandwilson
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2005, 10:51:39 AM »
Quote

Well, that's a lot, especially in conjuction with the photographic evidence. But even if she wasn't FS, she still wasn't Anastasia.


That's not the issue with me, Annie, and you know it.  I have said several times that I accept the DNA results as they stand today; my contention here is that Anna Anderson was absolutely NOT Franziska Schanzkowska.  Stop muddying the waters.

Quote
That's not much for what was supposed to have been someone's native language. What, no common use, no writings, no diaries in Russian? It doesn't sound like she was very comfortable with it. Even if she had been away from it for, what, a whole year and a half, it's not likely she would stop using it. Remember Alexandra continued to speak and correspond in English after being in Russia for 20 years!


Oh BS, Annie!  I'm assuming that English is your only language, or you would know that there are many other possibilities at play here.  I myself spoke Welsh as a child, both at home and at school.  It was my "native" language.  But from the age of sixteen, I lived here in California, and so English has been my language for the last twenty years -- I make notes to myself in English, keep a day-planner in English, speak to my family in English (unless we don't want my dad to follow the conversation! :)  ).  Just because someone was raised in a language does NOT mean that they are locked into it forever -- especially if they are immersed in another language.

And coming at this from another angle -- why no diaries, letters, notes, or other personal writings in Polish or Katchoubian?  That is, if she were Franziska Schanzkowska?
"Don't do anything by half. If you love someone, love them with all your soul. When you go to work, work your ass off. When you hate someone, hate them until it hurts."  -- A Piece of Good Advice

Sometimes the truth hurts. And sometimes it feels real good. -- Henry Rollins

Offline Penny_Wilson

  • Boyar
  • **
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
    • kingandwilson
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2005, 11:44:46 AM »
Quote
ANNIE & PENNY
Ladies,
     I feel certain that neither of you is overtly aware of this, but I have noticed more and more personal 'sniping" comments and remarks recently...
     I, of course, am not the FA,  so my requests may have little influence - but I should just want to remind EVERYONE here to please try not to take any contrary commentary personally.
     As I have done this all too often in the past --and suffered for it-- I hope to encourage others to avoid it in the future!

Here ended my sermon  8) ;D 8)

rskkiya



Please don't chastize me for arguing an issue with Annie.  As you say, it's not your job.  And in any case, I have not been hostile or "attacking" of Annie; I am merely questioning her conclusions and the ground they are based on.   Annie is not too fragile to be questioned, I hope?
"Don't do anything by half. If you love someone, love them with all your soul. When you go to work, work your ass off. When you hate someone, hate them until it hurts."  -- A Piece of Good Advice

Sometimes the truth hurts. And sometimes it feels real good. -- Henry Rollins

Offline sunnyluv

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 24
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
    • View Profile
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2005, 12:32:03 PM »
AA does not look at all as FS--she could not have been a FS based on many facts--her educatoin, for one;  Her scars and the knowledge of details plus handwriting tells the story she could not be just another claimant;  But she does not look to me as Anastasia either--she is different--did someone notice that her eyebrows shape is more arched than Anastasia's?  I thought that that shape does not change through life;  I just feel she is not Anastasia--but then who is she?  A mystery case;  Based not on appearance but on handwriting and details, same height, same scars I would say she is a clone:)))

Offline Annie

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 4757
    • View Profile
    • Anna Anderson Exposed!
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2005, 01:31:56 PM »
Quote


   Annie is not too fragile to be questioned, I hope?


No, but you have to admit the thread was aimed directly at me, even mentioning my name. You could have at least made it not look obvious!

I still don't think AA was all that known for her Russian skills enough to be Russian. My son picked up enough Russian from a CD-rom in 2 weeks so understand  questions of a Russian exchange student at school, though as Helen says about her Spanish, he doesn't speak or write it. Same could be for her.

But whatever she spoke and how she learned it, she still wasn't Anastasia, if that's what you're pushing this for.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Annie »

Offline Penny_Wilson

  • Boyar
  • **
  • Posts: 107
    • View Profile
    • kingandwilson
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2005, 01:55:51 PM »
Quote

No, but you have to admit the thread was aimed directly at me, even mentioning my name. You could have at least made it not look obvious!


I'm glad it was obvious that my post was directed to you; it was made in response to your continual assertion that Anna Anderson did not speak Russian.


Quote
I still don't think AA was all that known for her Russian skills enough to be Russian...


Of course you don't.  You never will.  Your mind is quite closed.  But I think I have shown that AA spoke Russian wel enough for a native-speaking Russian Grand Duchess to deem her "grammatical."  Do you want to drop this issue now?

Quote
But whatever she spoke and how she learned it, she still wasn't Anastasia, if that's what you're pushing this for.


"Whatever she spoke and how she learned it..." tells me that you have conceded the point.

And YET AGAIN, Annie -- PLEASE READ THIS AND RETAIN IT IN YOUR BRAIN FOR ALL TIME SO THAT I DON'T HAVE TO KEEP REMINDING YOU:

I am not "pushing" the idea that AA was Anastasia.  I am arguing that AA was NOT Franziska Schanzkowska, whoever she was.

Please, please do your  best to remember this.
"Don't do anything by half. If you love someone, love them with all your soul. When you go to work, work your ass off. When you hate someone, hate them until it hurts."  -- A Piece of Good Advice

Sometimes the truth hurts. And sometimes it feels real good. -- Henry Rollins

Offline sparrow

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 21
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
    • View Profile
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #12 on: March 07, 2005, 04:16:04 PM »
Hi this has been the my favorite thread in the whole theme. I was thrilled with the court stuff and even more excited to have a point in fact laid out there as concrete evidence.  So thank you Penny, it was worth coming on today just for that.  As for the idea that the shape of eyebrows never change, ( for the person who commented on the shape of eye brows)have you been outside lately to see other people? this shape can change daily for those who own tweasers.  yes, i watched it change in the same evening for my daughter.   but lol.  i really really loved the stuff on the lanuage issue.   sparrow

rskkiya

  • Guest
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2005, 04:23:38 PM »
Penny/ Annie
I have removed my post on this topic and in the future I will try to avoid any further retoric involving this issue. I am quite disapointed, as this is a facinating topic.

rskkiya

Offline Annie

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 4757
    • View Profile
    • Anna Anderson Exposed!
Re: AA and the Russian Language
« Reply #14 on: March 07, 2005, 04:30:33 PM »
Quote


"Whatever she spoke and how she learned it..." tells me that you have conceded the point.


She may have been familiar with some Russian, as my son is, but there is a huge difference between that and actually being a Russian speaker.


Quote
I am not "pushing" the idea that AA was Anastasia.  I am arguing that AA was NOT Franziska Schanzkowska, whoever she was.

Please, please do your  best to remember this.


Previous posts (unless you deleted them all) by you have stated you believed she 'probably was' Anastasia. I can't read your mind so I don't know if you've changed it, but I can't understand why anyone would become so vehement on this subject just to prove AA was not one anonymous person, but another ??? I am not really buying that, you attitude seems to point to you still hoping to prove an AN connection. Of course I cannot prove that, but it seems that way to me the way you write, the things you post and the way you behave when someone questions you. That's what I'm going by.  

Rsskiya, you didn't do anything wrong. We are sniping at each other. However, I have yet to start a thread openly aimed at one person. Even if you want to get one message across you can still start a thread without going 'hey look at this so and so'- stating your case should be enough.