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Messages - Ena

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The Final Chapter / Re: Church OnThe Blood , Ekaterinburg
« on: May 08, 2012, 02:35:45 PM »
I've been there. I'm pretty sure the avenue was renamed.  Ulitsa Karla Liebknechta (named for marxist Karl Liebknecht) is the long and wide avenue that passes Church on Blood.  On page 107 of my copy of FOTR, is a photo looking up Voznesensky Prospect. The layout of the avenue matches what I recall of Ulitsa Karla Liebknechta, complete with the Voznesensky Cathedral on the right side as you're going north.  There is a plaza in front of Voznesensky Cathedral that faces Ulitsa Karla Liebknechta and the back of the church.  The front of the church faces Tolmacheva Ulitsa, which is a long street in its own right, but the part that fronts the church is pretty bare.  IIRC, it there is a type of park/square in front.

To clarify: NICHOLAS (1868-1918) was the first born, though, as Coryne Hall suggests in "Little Mother of Russia", there is some evidence that the future Empress Marie F. may have had a miscarriage before her successful pregnancy with him. Alexander lived 1869-70, and the idea that he was the first son is nothing more than one of those "lost heir" fantasies which arise when a monarch screws up as Nicholas did: the fond idea that if his brother had succeeded, things might have gone differently. It used to be written that Alexander was the eldest in the sort of books which summarised royal lives, not in-depth biographies - in fact, Alexander Mikhailovich may be responsible, ultimately, because he did say this in one of his many tomes. Coryne does not describe him as first son in her in-depth book, because he wasn't.
Thank you, Janet.  It also doesn't help when a so-called "expert" on this forum also continues on with this misinformation.

Here is a photo of baby Alexander's tomb I took inside the Peter & Paul Cathedral. He lived 1869-1870. I hope all debates about his order of birth can cease! ;)


Palaces in St. Petersburg / Re: Palace of GD Alexei Aleksandrovitch
« on: February 24, 2012, 03:17:43 PM »
I took a tour of this palace today.  Amazing!!   

For those interested in information about the tours, you can find it here - 

I was first informed on inquiry that a personal tour in English would cost 7,000 rubles, so I opted for the inexpensive 350 ruble, group tour in Russian.  My Russian is very basic, so I could only understand bits and pieces, but it was the idea that I was inside, seeing the rooms in person, that mattered the most to me.  Absolutely no photos are allowed inside, or outside in the courtyard.  Unfortunately, there are no souvenir type books or items on sale.   

I know that the parade halls have been given to the Tsarskoe Selo state museum and have been fully restored but what is presently happening to the wing that is not part of the state museum?
I was there last week and workmen were still working on that side of the palace. 

I actually took a very cheesy photo of myself next to it when I was at Hillwood. It's much smaller than you'd think it would be but absolutely gorgeous.
I was surprised at how small the nuptial crown was.  Also, there is so much in the room that I almost missed it.     

The Danish Royal Family / Re: Danish royal jewels
« on: December 28, 2011, 06:46:34 PM »
Thanks so much for the link.  I enjoyed these two documentaries immensely. :-)

Tsarskoe Selo Palaces / Re: Childrens Island and the Empress's Balcony
« on: December 19, 2011, 08:07:41 PM »
One of our forum members, Laura Mabee, visited the Children's Island when she studied in Russia.

It's really only possible to visit the island in the winter time, when the canal is frozen over.  If the ice is hard and safe enough, you can just walk over.  As of now, you cannot go inside of the pavilion.

I visited the park a few years ago, and you will definitely get a great view of it from the banks.  As for walking around the palace grounds, near to where the balcony once was, it's really a very open space, so you can go wherever is allowable.  I don't recall any real barriers, but that may have changed since my visit.

Its already July 13th, so I don't think that it will be July. I give my penny to Van Hoogstraten.
I doubt it too, and half expect the date to change to August on GRB's site! :-P

Hmmm, again Van Hoogstraten, has got it right! I think that Van Hoogstraten has the better knowledge about the publishing dates, then GRB.
I think so too, Teddy. GRB has pushed the publishing date to July.  Either way, I can't wait for this book. I've wanted to get my hands on Marie Edinburgh's letters for ages now. I guess until then, October it will have to be. :-)

Rasputin / Re: Rasputin's Murder
« on: June 17, 2011, 05:16:47 AM »
That part of the Moika Palace is only open when there is a Russian speaking guide. Your alternative could be to go with someone who speaks Russian and will translate for you afterwards.
As rudy3 says its a sort of Madame Tussauds. I went to a similar thing in the Peter and Paul Fortress. It was nobility, politians and the Imperial Family. I thought it looked tacky and regretted going in.
I know. I tried once to buy a ticket to get into the Russian tour, speaking the poorest, most non-existent Russian possible. Trust me, they weren't fooled. ;-P

I agree about it being a sort of Madame Tussauds.  I was never a fan of wax exhibits, but it would've been nice to be in the room for history's sake. :-) 

Rasputin / Re: Rasputin's Murder
« on: June 11, 2011, 09:28:54 PM »
In the "Royal Russia" update there is a piece about Rasputin's murder. Last year when I was in St P. I went to the Yusopov Palace and wanted to see the murder rooms as well as the rest of the Palace. I was told that the murder rooms are only open on certain days and only to a Russian speaking group! What are they hiding or don't want non-Russians to know?
Comments invited.
You have to hire an English speaking guide to see the murder rooms, unless you speak Russian.

My hands were shaking when I typed over to see Marlene's review.  She is after all very critical (as well she should be) and extremely knowledgeable. I'm not only relieved, but extremely gratified.  WOW!
I ordered your book today.  Can't wait to read it. :-)


It seems the book has been postponed for a little bit. It will probably be released in the autumn.

Odd, Van Hoogstraten's site is showing October. Gilbert's is showing this month.

The Alexander Palace / Re: Children's Island
« on: March 01, 2011, 08:28:47 PM »
So jealous Laura!  I visited in winter as well, but was too scared to walk across the pond, especially with no one around, save for some kids sledding in the distance.  With my luck, the ice would've cracked and I'd have fallen in!  Curious, did you peek inside the windows?  If so, what did you see?

It's nice to see a perspective of the size of the house with you and your friend in front.  The house looks so small from across the way and in photos.  Can't wait to see any more photos you may have. :)

Amazon have sent me an alert that they have shipped out this book today.  Can't wait until it's in my hands. :)

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