Author Topic: Imperial Christmas  (Read 19491 times)

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Offline Merrique

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Imperial Christmas
« on: November 05, 2004, 04:32:59 PM »
Since that time of year is fast approaching,I was wondering how the Imperial Family celebrated Christmas.Did they have christmas trees and other decor.What kinds of gifts and thing were given.What kinds of religious observences/ceremonies there were during this time of year.
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Offline Alexandra

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2004, 04:53:50 PM »
They surely celebrated Christmas, although it is not the great festival that Orthodox Easter is. Alix, however, with her Anglo-German origins, would have been accustomed to the lavishness with which Christmas is observed in those traditions, and would have shared them with her own family. I believe that Wartski's, in London, still has on display a rock-crystal paperknife [by Faberge, if my old memory serves me aright] which she sent to Miss 'Madgie' Jackson for the Christmas of 1900, with its inscribed card.

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2004, 05:03:57 PM »
Christmas was a very big deal and had been celebrated in the palaces for a long time prior to Nicholas and Alexandra.  Alix's tree in the Mauve Room was flocked in white and had mauve ornaments - all their trees had electric lights.

The mauve glass ornaments are described as being very beautiful.

I wish I could transport myself to GARF and sit for days and just go through the photo albums - there is SO MUCH there that could tell us so much more about things like Christmas...

We were lucky to find a big silver spoon from the Dowager Empress inscribed Christmas tree - with the date,  This would have been a great gift for a servant....

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2004, 05:10:40 PM »
Actually I wish I could transport myself and take all of you with me!

Offline Annie

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2004, 05:16:33 PM »
I wish you could too! I'd love to go!  :)

Offline Amy

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2004, 05:18:58 PM »
I wish you could, too! If you figure out how to do this, I'll be ready any time, any where, no questions asked.  :)

Offline Merrique

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2004, 05:21:55 PM »
I think all of us would love to be transported to GARF and be able to look through all of those wonderful photo albums.I'm sure there is so much there than most of us will never get to see.

I bet that christmas tree in Alix's Mauve Room with all of the white and the mauve ornaments was breathtaking to see.Alix,in my opinion had such a great sense of style not only to the way she dressed but also to the way she decorated.
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Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2004, 05:28:46 PM »
Merrique - can you imagine that every ornament might have had a story behind it - well we will probably never know...

Offline Merrique

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2004, 05:34:50 PM »
With Alix being the type of person that she was I am sure every ornament had a story behind it.But you're right,we will probably never know.But things like that are exactly what I'd like to know.What are the stories behind each ornament,what special meaning did they have for Alix.You just know they had a special place in her heart.
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Offline ISteinke

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #9 on: November 05, 2004, 07:23:22 PM »
I was thinking about those photo albums that Bob was talking about- in the archives of the Russian Federation.

It has been my opinion, for several years, that the archives of the Russian government should not be in possession of those photo albums. In reality, as with any family, those photo albums [the ones created by Nicky, Alix, and Otma], precious family heirlooms, should belong to the descendants of the family- particularly the descendants of Xenia Alexandrovna, or even to the Kulikovskys. As I have stated on another thread, family heirlooms should go to those who they will mean the most to- not the Russian government.

Plus, if the Romanovs themselves had their family albums returned to them, they would be much more accessible to researchers.





Offline Belochka

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2004, 10:45:21 PM »
Quote
It has been my opinion, for several years, that the archives of the Russian government should not be in possession of those photo albums.


I have to respectfully disagree.

Those albums have become Russia's heirlooms now. They are in safekeeping on behalf of all the Russian people.
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Offline ptitchka

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #11 on: November 05, 2004, 11:00:51 PM »
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Actually I wish I could transport myself and take all of you with me!


Mr. Atchison, that is very kind of you to say.  Thank you for your sentiments.

I have a question about Imperial Christmas celebrations, that some of us that are more familiar with Russian customs could clarify.  The word pronounced 'yolka' in Russian refers to a Christmas tree, but is this word generally understood also to refer to a party, for either St. Nicholas Day or Christmas?  Our parish has a 'Yolka' celebration with a tree, but were such festivities held back then and known as a 'Yolka'?  If so, I think the Imperial Family might have observed this Russian custom based on what I have deciphered out of the original Russian text of one of the letters -- the sentence is translated 'Are you coming for the Christmas tree?'

Offline Dasha

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #12 on: November 05, 2004, 11:54:57 PM »
Quote

Mr. Atchison, that is very kind of you to say.  Thank you for your sentiments.

I have a question about Imperial Christmas celebrations, that some of us that are more familiar with Russian customs could clarify.  The word pronounced 'yolka' in Russian refers to a Christmas tree, but is this word generally understood also to refer to a party, for either St. Nicholas Day or Christmas?  Our parish has a 'Yolka' celebration with a tree, but were such festivities held back then and known as a 'Yolka'?  If so, I think the Imperial Family might have observed this Russian custom based on what I have deciphered out of the original Russian text of one of the letters -- the sentence is translated 'Are you coming for the Christmas tree?'


Hello Elizabeth,

Your assumptions are absolutely correct.  The word "yolka" has to do with the celebration as well as the actaul tree. I can't attest if it was used for St. Nikolai's Day or not, but it may have been, because in our church one is decorated for that occasion as well.  

I hope I was helpfull, and I apologize if I wasn't, because I just finished typing a paper and my brain is a little fried.  If you have anymore questions, let me know.

Dasha
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Offline Lanie

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #13 on: November 06, 2004, 01:31:56 AM »
Oohh.  If they digitized their Romanov albums... I bet we'd all be in utter heaven.  I'd be willing to PAY for access.  That's rather sad but true.

Offline Dasha

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Re: Imperial Christmas
« Reply #14 on: November 06, 2004, 01:39:49 AM »
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Oohh.  If they digitized their Romanov albums... I bet we'd all be in utter heaven.  I'd be willing to PAY for access.  That's rather sad but true.


Hey Lanie

I don't think it's sad at all.  I'm a total geek and would pay for access to that as well (I think it's time Dasha got a new hobby...and a life).  After all, I spent close to two hundred bucks on Romanov stuff in the past several months.  Yep, I admit it, I'm a dork, but ever since I found this site I feel a bit more normal and not alone in my interest.

Dasha


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Sail unrestrained'.

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