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Messages - Elizabeth

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The Imperial Family / Re: Pronounciation
« on: June 08, 2005, 07:53:56 AM »
Actually, I think it's Nick - oh - lie - oh - vich.  For Nicholas, it would have been Alex - and - row - vich.   :D


Yeah, there are a lot of "Anastasia" books out there now that sell for REALLY cheap.  I think after the DNA results came out that some started GIVING their books away.   ;)


The Imperial Family / Re: Pronounciation
« on: June 06, 2005, 02:08:22 PM »
Well, then, I've pronounced it WRONG for the past 30+ years (and here I thought my Russian history professor was pronouncing it that way  - the right way! - because he was from the New England area).   ;D

Seriously, it took me until I started taking Russian history classes in college that I knew how to pronounce the majority of the names that I had been seeing/reading for years -

Pobedonostev - Poe - bed - oh - no - stev - and Witte - Vit - tah  (the "w" is pronounced as a "V") - were the trickiest.  Also, Stolypin - Stoll - ee - pin.

AND, I didn't realize I was pronouncing Rasputin's name wrong (you would think THAT wouldn't be a hard one).  until I heard Robert Massie pronounce it.  (I was pronouncing it "Ras - pew - tin")

The way I remember it now is to just think of Vladimir Putin (Poo - tin) and put the "Ras" in front of it.


Hi, Lass!
Yes, I've read this one (I think I got it via e-Bay), and it's good, but really not what I was expecting.  A lot of the information I had read before (except for her post-Revolution years).  

It's really a QUICK read.  (And wasn't there another book by this name, written by GD Paul's daughter?)

I'm STILL in search of Ian Vorrey's (sp?) biography on GD Olga that was written shortly before her death in Canada.  Has anyone seen this?


Annie wrote: Actually, Michael was the only one never found.

Actually, I think I read somewhere that Michael's body (along with his secretary, who was killed with him) was destroyed in a "furnace" at a nearby iron works plant (or something like that!).

It makes me wonder if Michael's body was destroyed in that fashion, why didn't they destroy N&A's bodies the same way?   ???

Hi, KentKim -
Thanks for your reply.

Yes, I DO have the soft cover, but it's a different editiion than the one linked on your e-mail.  My cover has Nicholas & Alexandra and their family (in the same formal portrait as in your linked soft cover edition), except it cuts off Alexei's right arm (and hence Tatiana).

I MUST admit that when I bought the book I realized it wasn't just about N & A, but didn't know the author would just "highlight" their reign.  I do see where it states,

"This study wisely skirts around the last czar, Nicholas II, and his consort, Alexandra, in its focus on more interesting (and equally tragic) members of Russia's doomed dynastic house. In particular, Van der Kiste's portrait of Alexander II is especially affecting."

I wholeheartedly agree that the author's coverage of Alexander II was EXCELLENT and, as I stated earlier, and addressed parts of his life that I had never read before.  

However, it concerns me when I see glaring typos, like calling the "Alexander Palace" the "Alexandra Palace at Tsarskoe Selo" (among others), that I wonder if there are others that I'm simply missing.

As for the other books you suggested, I, myself, have ready Massie's N&A too many times to count (I stopped counting at 20!), and I thought Radzinsky's Rasputin file was marvelous.

Small bit of trivia here - I got Mistalav Rostopovich to autograph my edition of "The Rasputin File" when he was in my city for a concert.  For those of you who haven't read it, Rostopovich (the great Russian cellist) found the "Rasputin File" at an auction and gave it to Radzinsky.  He was so CUTE when I asked him to autograph the book (he had been VERY serious up to that point!) - he giggled and said, "Oh, it's MY book" (everyone standing around us were VERY impressed), and then he said to me in a whisper, "Of course, WE know it's not "My Book", but I HELPED!"   ;)


Yes, that's her!  Thanks, Lanie!

I wonder what ever happened to her?  I would assume she died a number of years ago, but after she was "found out," no one was interested in her again!   ;)

Has anyone read this book?  I got it at the Cincinnati Museum (one of the few books that they had left).

It's not the most ACCURATE of the books out there - the cover ITSELF is wrong (one of the posed pics of the IF, but they "cropped out" Tatiana to fit it on the cover - ugh!).  There are also several errors, referring to N & A's home as the "Alexandra Palace."  Rasputin is dealt with in a few sentences, and the executions in 1918 of the IF are given all of about two paragraphs!!

However, it goes into a lot of history about Alexander II, esp. about what happened to the children from his morgantic marriage, which I hadn't read before, as well as Alexander III's relationship with his father and siblings, and Nicholas's close relationship with his uncle, Sergei. (Don't expect a lot about Ella, and what's there is entirely negative!)


Wasn't there another "autobiography" out there at one time (not by Anna Anderson), from another one of the "claimants."  It was actually written by the woman, but she was proved to be false (I think Life or Look Magazine had a story on her back in the 1950s or 1960s, and the discovered AFTER the article was published that it wasn't REALLY AN - duh!).

Can't remember the name of the book, but I saw it, again, at the local library a few years ago. >:(

The Imperial Family / Re: Romanovs and Faith/Orthodox Religion
« on: May 23, 2005, 12:06:46 PM »
Greetings, RealAnastasia -
Sorry I didn't respond sooner (for some reason, my server is not "alerting" me to new messages).

Going back to several posts earlier - yes, there DEFINITELY is "holy water" in the Orthodox church - just not in a "font" at the entrance of the church (like Roman Catholics).  Of course, I've only attended Orthodox churches in the USA (OCA/Antiochian/Green), so don't know if there are other "traditions" in other countries regarding a "font" at the entrance.

Actually, the baptismal font should be in the "Narthex" (the entrance to the church - sort of like a lobby).  In the ancient Orthodox tradition, it was where "non-Orthodox" stood and watched the service (they were not permitted to enter).  So it was with unbaptized children - the baptismal font was in the Narthex, they were baptized in the Narthex, and then welcomed into the church.  (Our church has the baptismal font in front of the iconstasis - not theologically correct, but no one wants to move it!)

No, women are not permitted to be priests in the Orthodox faith.  

And, as a follow up to that, yes, there are nuns in the Orthodox church.  However, they're NOT like the nuns in the Roman Catholic faith (in that they don't teach in schools, minister in hospitals, etc.).  The nuns in Orthodoxy are MONASTIC - they live in "monasteries" and their work involves not only prayer, but sometimes making of liturgical garments, prayer ropes, iconography, etc.  

There are TWO nice-sized monastic communities that I've visited here in the United States - one in Rives Junction, Michigan (the Dormition of the Mother of God Monastery) and in Ellwood City, Pennsylvania (the Holy Transfiguration Monastery).  I'm sure there are a number of others in the US (and definitely MORE overseas) - they're just not within driving distance of where I live.

Oh, and burial traditions - maybe Matushka can help out more on this, but I'll try to answer as best I can:

In my church, the deceased (we refer to it as someone who has "fallen asleep") is placed in the funeral home for visitation (usually 1-2 days depending on the family's wishes).  On the last night before burial, Trisagion (pronounced "Tree-sag-ee-on") prayers are read and/or chanted by the priest and choir at the side of the casket.  They're quite beautiful - praying for the soul of the departed - and ending with the chant, "Memory Eternal!"  After this, the priest, who is holding a cross that has been by the coffin, blesses the body and those in attendance, and each person comes up to venerate the cross.

The next morning, the family comes back to the funeral home - with the priest - and Trisagion prayers are read and/or chanted once again at the side of the coffin.  The body is then taken to the church, where the choir (or chanters) is waiting.  The priest - who has made it back to the church before the coffin - greets the coffin - with the family - at the doors of the church and leads the coffin up the main aisle.  The coffin is placed before the iconstasis, and, if the body is able to be presented, the coffin lid is raised and the entire service takes place with the coffin open.  

Again, absolutely GORGEOUS prayers - chanted and read - about the resurrection of Christ, the falling asleep of the deceased, etc.  The final act is the priest blessing the body and annoiting the forehead with holy oil).  The coffin is then closed for the last time.

Then, the coffin is taken to the cemetery, additional prayers are read and sung at the grave site, and that's it.  

There's usually a "mercy meal" back at the church hall that the parishioners of the church prepare for the family and other friends and relatives (like an Irish wake!).  

Of course, this is what I've witnessed in the Antiochian archdiocese.  I've also sung at a funeral that was in the EVENING, which took place after visitation (the coffin stayed in the church the whole time - visitation and all).  The coffin stayed in the church throughout the night (I think various chanters stayed with it and said prayers throughout the evening), and then the family came back the next morning to the church - more prayers - and then on to the cemetery.

Also, not to confuse things further, but after the burial, there are memorial services for the deceased at certain intervals (can you help me out here fellow Orthodox?).  A 10 day, 1 month, 6 months, 1 year and then each year on the date of death after that.  Holy wheat is offered (and prepared by a member of the church) - the wheat represents the Gospel where Christ says something about wheat and how it falls to the ground and decays (referring to us as human beings).

Okay - now I've made EVERYONE confused (including myself), but I think that answered the question. ::)


I understand your point, Robert (in fact, it's a VERY IMPORTANT point).

However, my concern is that we're talking about someone who has been sainted by both ROCOR and the Russian Orthodox Church (in Russia), and I thought they were a little "hesitant" about granting sainthood to bones they "weren't really sure" were the real thing (the IF's remains come instantly to mind).  

If there were only TWO women in the mine who were killed, then that narrows it down considerably, in that ONE of them has to be Elizabeth (maybe it's just not the one in the coffin marked with her name).  But, again, I would have thought the Church would have checked that out.

Nevertheless, it's a fascinating (but disturbing) twist.


I now this thread hasn't been "active" for a few months, but now that I'm on the board, I have some questions (especially about GD "Elizabeth" or the "finger").  Also, I know one of the posts directed the individual to "the article," but I can't seem to locate it.

1.  First of all, was there evidence that the finger was taken off of GD Elizabeth's hand (either in the mine or as a relic).  Interestingly (and it might already have been discussed), but her "hand" was traveling around Russia last year to be venerated by the faithful.

2.  Also, re: the discussions about if that is "really" GD Elizabeth in the grave on the Mount of Olives, I recall reading in ONE of my many books on the IF that the coffin eventually found its way to Cairo, where it was met by one of Elizabeth's and Alexandra's sisters (Irene maybe?), who wrote to their brother, Ernie.  In her letter to him, she said something (and I'm paraphrasing here) that "her body was not corrupted, and it looked as if she were sleeping."  Surely, her own SISTER would have "seen" the difference between her own sister and the nun, Barbara?

Just some thoughts . . .


The Imperial Family / Re: Romanovs and Faith/Orthodox Religion
« on: May 18, 2005, 11:21:08 AM »
Hi, bluetoria -
Glad you joined this thread, and thanks for the question (are you the same "bluetoria" who wrote the recent book on GD Elisabeth?).

I've thought about this question a LOT esp. since the death of Pope John Paul II (lots of tears were shed by my family and me at his death -- esp. when we watched the documentaries on his life that were being shown when he was younger and SO energetic!).  What a magnificent human being!  He's in a far BETTER place now, and the sufferings he went through over the past few years make it a blessing.

Honestly, I don't hold out much hope for unification of the two churches, at least in my lifetime (I'm in my 40's, so there's -- God willing -- still some time to go!).  While there are a GREAT amount of similarities, there are some major issues that I don't think the Orthodox - or the Catholics - are ready to "give in" on:  

The infallibility of the Pope; the filioque clause (see Matushka's post above); the issue of the Theotokos (Virgin Mary) being born "without sin"; married priests.  Speaking for myself, I'm not ready - as an Orthodox Christian - to deny the teachings of Orthodoxy (since they were the ORIGINAL teachings of the Church -- and all of these "dogmas" in the Roman Church came in over the past few centuries).

On the issues of the Russian Orthodox Church not permitting Pope John Paul II to come to Moscow, there are some MAJOR issues there as well (Matuska can help me out here).  Here are just a couple that come to mind:

1.  The issue of the Roman church converting Orthodox to the Roman Catholic faith.  There have been some "aggressive" tactics employed by the Roman Catholics to convert Orthodox, esp. in the Ukraine.  As you might have seen at JP II's funeral, the priests who were invited up to the coffin (singing "Christ Has Risen" in Greek) were NOT Orthodox BUT Eastern Rite Catholics -- they have the same services as Orthodox, but "are in communion with Rome" (i.e., teachings of the Pope, etc.).  The "real" Orthodox (Patriarch Bartholomew, who sits in Constantiople) were seated in the front row, but did not participate in the service.

Several books that I've read had the Roman church coming into the Ukraine (and other areas of Russia) and "converting" the Orthodox -- basically saying, "You can keep your liturgy and married priests, but . . ."

2.  This next thing is a VERY BAD issue.  You may want to read "Hitler's Pope" (I don't subscribe to the overall premise of this book, but on the Orthodox issue, there are some publications out there that support this).  These events happened in Serbia during World War II against Orthodox Christians by the Nazis (who were supported by the Croats - who were Roman Catholic).  It's too brutal to go into here -- it makes my stomach turn - but someone (maybe me!) needs to write a book about it.  Just one of the horrors - Orthodox priests and their families were made to dig their own graves while Roman Catholic leaders in the community stood cheering next to the Nazis (who of course machine gunned the Orthodox to death)!  There were MANY Orthodox Christians who were killed in the Holocaust too, so when Pope John Paul II made his apologies a few years ago to a number of groups who were persecuted over the centuries by the Roman church, I was hurt when I realized that he didn't mention these atrocities!

3.  Oh, and then there's a LOT of chalices, liturgical items, Orthodox art, etc., that's in a MUSEUM in Venice (my dad visited it a few years ago) that was taken from Constantiople, Jerusalem and other Orthodox churches during the Crusades.  However, it WAS nice that JP II gave back the relics of St. John Chrysostom and St. Gregory Palamus (I think) to Patriarch Bartholomew -- it's a start, um?

Sorry to blabber on - as you can tell, I'm passionate on this subject.   :)


The Alexander Palace / Re: Trip to Alexander Palace?
« on: May 18, 2005, 10:47:43 AM »
I'm wondering if this trip is "on" and when as well (since I started the thread back in December -- sorry, I know everyone - including me - has been busy!). ;D

If we're looking at the summer of 2006 (or even 2007), that's more feasible than THIS summer (since summer "officially begins" on June 21).  

Bob -- if it's a type of thing that you want someone to do research and make the arrangements (and a lot of people look like they've done that already), I'd be happy to throw my name into the mix.  

Elizabeth (with a "z")

Just wanted to post that I've been reading Greg & Penny's book (again!), and since I'm now "officially" on this board, I wanted to commend both of them for such a fabulous work.  I read it when it first came out and thought I'd pick it up again, as it's approaching the anniversary of the murders.

While reading the book, I have been thinking how HARD it was for the family to not have regular church services, ESP. during Holy Week and Easter (which - in my opinion - is the most magnificent period of the entire church year, and yes, I'm Orthodox!).  Any thoughts?

Greg & Penny (if you're "out there") -- Starting back at the Alexander Palace, was the family denied services (I'll have to go back and check), esp. since Easter in 1917 fell AFTER the abdication?

I recall that they were allowed to go to church in Tobolsk, but that "privilege" was denied after the priest prayed for the IF during the Great Entrance of the Divine Liturgy.  Were they able to have a priest visit the house at Tobolsk regularly?  And what happened to the priests/bishops in Tobolsk after the Bolsheviks took over the city?  Were they punished?

At the Ipatiev House, I recall you writing that they were denied a priest on several occasions, but Yurovsky releted shortly before the murders.  Did the priests who were there in those final days write a book on their experiences (I saw in the footnotes that you referenced one of them and a publication in French, I think).  Is this available in translation?  Were those priests able to escape from the city after the White Army entered?

Also, it seems that the IF was never left ALONE with the priests - hence, I would assume that no confessions or counseling between the IF and the clergy were permitted.  

Just some thoughts . . .

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