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Messages - slhouette

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So I wrote a little about this in the thread under Imperial Family called "The Imperial children 'sad,sheltered' life?," but I'll expand here. So it's not as highly quoted as Pierre Gilliard's Thirteen Years, but Gilliard actually did write another memoir with a co-author Konstantin Savich: "La Fausse Anastasie: Histoire D'une Prétendue Grande-Duchesse de Russie." This was a book dedicated to debunking the Anna Anderson controversy with a variety of evidence, including Gilliard's own perspective meeting Anderson.

The vast majority of the book's content focuses on, well, the false Anastasia; however, the introductory chapter includes a bit of Gilliard talking about Anastasia's character as he knew her. The title of this thread references loneliness because there's a specific piece of text that challenges the suggestion that the Grand Duchesses had perfectly fine social lives and were not isolated, deprived, etc. (I'm writing an essay about this now, so you can imagine I was extremely excited to happen upon this text!!)

The text was originally in French but has been translated into English and is available as an Amazon eBook. However, I recommend not buying it; the translator, Edgar Lucidi, writes his own introductory statement to the translation and is not just ahistorical - he uses the book to argue against Anna Anderson, in order to support his own Anastasia pretender - but also makes numerous antisemitic remarks pertaining to the execution of the tsarist family. Besides, aside from the information I'm about to post, the majority of the content can be found in Anna Anderson books such as Peter Kurth's.

Anyways, here is an excerpt of Gilliard's text. I bolded the part referring to Anastasia and loneliness:

The Imperial Family / Re: The Imperial children "sad,sheltered" life?
« on: June 01, 2020, 08:36:52 PM »
Actually since this source isn't very well known I'll go ahead and put the excerpt from the introduction in a new thread in the Anastasia Nicholaivna subforum. The introduction is written by Gilliard and is about Anastasia herself, before he gets into discussing the Anna Anderson controversy.

Oh, I think the translation is perfectly correct. The vast majority of the content is what was written by Gilliard and his co-author Konstantin Savich. I'm just sad that I accidentally supported a translator that was making antisemitic remarks in his work. If I had known that content was in there beforehand, I would have just gone through the trouble of translating the original source rather than support that translators work. :-(

That being said, it'd always be interesting to go back to the original text and see how the translations differ. It looks like La Fausse Anastasie is at multiple US university libraries just from a search. The closest one to me is a bit too far to justify making a whole trip for, though.

This thread is pretty old, but I'll go ahead and post anyways so that people browsing the forum might see it.

Pierre Gilliard did write another memoir beside Thirteen Years, about the Anna Anderson controversy: "La Fausse Anastasie: Histoire D'une Prétendue Grande-Duchesse de Russie." I got lucky to find someone translated it to English and published it as an Amazon ebook; unfortunately, this translator uses Gilliard's text to try and prop up his own Anastasia pretender. Plus, this ebook is littered with antisemitic remarks. So it was pretty embarrassing for me that I spent money on it, I wish I'd just found + translated the original text myself, even though I don't know French....

Anyways, there's a really revealing piece of text in this Gilliard memoir. He includes the text of a letter Anastasia wrote to his wife (Alexandra 'Shura' Tegleva) and then says this:

"At the time of this letter of 4 August 1915, Anastasia was 14 years old. What is there more simple and natural than this letter, which distinguishes her from all other young girls, and how can one even suspect in reading it that she is the daughter of the Emperor!
It’s that Anastasia had no one who could recall this conventional type of a Romanesque princess. She was a young girl, sound and in good health, who wanted to enjoy life fully and who had but one regret, that being born a grand duchess she was deprived of that liberty which she envied in simple mortals. It was she herself who, at 11 years of age, pleaded with her mother to place her into an institute where she could have a lot of friends and who, two years later, compelled her to let her devote herself to the theater, a vocation for which she felt an irresistible inclination."

Sounds like at least Anastasia was having some issues with loneliness/isolation. None of the letters/diaries of the Nicholas, Alexandra, the GDs, etc, give any reference to either of these incidents. It really goes to show that the primary documents give the appearance of cheeriness when, at least with this daughter, something wasn't right.

Nicholas II / Re: Nicholas II and Anti-Semitism.
« on: May 18, 2020, 08:46:28 PM »
Oh, I forget if these have been mentioned back in this thread, but I was recently reading some of the Sokolov depositions and found some interesting bits that are really incriminating to how Nicholas felt about Jews post-revolution:

From Kaudia Bitner: "I don't think [Nicholas] knew the people. He had this attitude towards the people: kind, good, soft people. He was confused by the skinny [?] people in this revolution. Its rulers are "the Jews". But this is all temporary. It'll all pass. The people will come to their senses and there will be order again." This is my own translation so I'm not sure what she meant by "skinny."

From Alexandra Tegleva: " I know the views of the Princesses on the revolution. They, of course, expressed the views of their parents. They said that it was a product of Germany, which acted for the collapse of Russia through the Bolshevik leaders, mainly Jews."

These depositions are up online in Russian. Here's a link to Tegleva's since it's already right in front of me:

Nicholas II / Re: Nicholas II and Anti-Semitism.
« on: May 18, 2020, 08:34:29 PM »
I know this! It's buried somewhere in "The Great War and February Revolution 1914-1917." It's separated into 3 books so it's a lot. It's online in Russian at this link:

It's interesting but extremely biased. I'd be interested to know what your thesis is - I really hope it's not Nicholas II apologia :-( This particular forum discussion took place many years ago, but it's helped me in my own research in the specific subject. In my opinion, it doesn't matter if Nicholas felt particularly wrathful towards Jews; just the fact that he didn't actively and forcefully advocate for an oppressed people, such as disbanding the Pale/similar restrictions, or dispersing the Black Hundreds, is inherently antisemitic. It's kind of useless to make a systematic issue so deeply personal by debating in circles on Nicholas' personal view/feelings. If Nicholas chose to defend/benefit a government system that upholds antisemitism, he was antisemitic. :-( !!!!

The Windsors / Princess Margaret quote source
« on: May 14, 2020, 11:50:32 PM »
Does anyone know of an academic/reputable source, like a book I could find at a library, an interview, etc, for a quote by Princess Margaret: "I have as much privacy as a goldfish in a bowl." I'm not familiar at all on British royals so I don't know where to start at all looking for a reference to that quote.

Olga Nicholaievna / Re: Locking Trina's Maid in Water-Closet
« on: May 08, 2020, 02:12:21 PM »
@ Georgiy thanks so much for the reply! That's so exciting to know!

@ Duchess Hydrangea I really can't find anymore information about them at all, it's pretty mysterious... I wonder if there's any material in GARF on them. Hm.

Here's an interesting lead: In Helen Rappaport's Romanov Sisters, she cites an article from a Los Angeles emigre magazine that was apparently written by Trina's niece Natalya Soloveva. The citation is: Soloveva, Natalia, ‘La Tristesse Imperiale,” Rodnye dali 202 (Los Angeles), 1971, pp. 12-15. The piece of text attached to the citation is: "Two other young visitors to Trina Schneider at her apartments in the AP found themselves bombarded with similar questions. Maria and Anastasia often joined them at Trina’s apartments after lunch and engaged the girls, Natalya and Fofa, in exuberant, mischievous games that were almost too much for Trina to cope with. In quieter moments Anastasia and Maria were endlessly inquisitive about their everyday lives. ‘They asked us about school, our friends, our teachers and wanted to know how we spent our time off, which theatres we went to, what books we read, and so on.’" [pg 161]

I'm planing on taking a closer look at the article, as I live decently close to the US Library of Congress. It'd be nice to see what else she mentions in the article. Too bad everything's shut down because of Coronavirus, agh! 

Olga Nicholaievna / Re: Locking Trina's Maid in Water-Closet
« on: March 17, 2020, 06:50:57 PM »
I'll record my journey to find a source for this note in this thread, I guess. Maybe it will be interesting/useful for others?

So the quote is not in any of Helen Azar's translations of the Romanov sisters diaries/letters. Since reading the text provided online of August Sisters of Mercy, I noticed that Ms. Azar's books don't have every single diary entry/letter that they wrote.

I took a chance on Raegan Baker's "Anastasia's Sisters," the next installation of her Romanov studies after Olga's 1913 diary translation, it wasn't in there either. Not sure where to go from here. I contacted's site runners but no response, I'm not even sure if they would remember where they found that as the site was made in the early 2000s. Very frustrating!!

Olga Nicholaievna / Locking Trina's Maid in Water-Closet
« on: March 10, 2020, 09:48:19 PM »
I was wondering if anyone could help me find an academic/reputable source for the following letter by Olga? The only source I can find so far for it is I know the site runners put a lot of effort into pulling their information from reputable sources, but unfortunately, for citation purposes, I can’t use the website as a reliable source. :(
“9 October 1915 (to Papa)
I am sitting in Mr. Gilliard's rooms near the door of his water-closet where Trina's little nasty girl Katya is sitting locked in by Anastasia and myself. We've just drawn her along the dark passage and pushed her in. The weather became very cold and it was snowing today and the snow didn't melt. We had a lot of fun when we went for a drive with Isa but Mama was receiving visitors all the time which was rather dull. Mordvinov had breakfast with us and told us a lot of interesting things but we interrupted him every moment as usually and didn't let him go on. It's always a great pleasure for us to read Alexei's letters. He writes such nice and funny letters without Pyotr Vasilievich's help. Katya is still locked in the W.C. She is knocking and wailing behind the door but we are implacable.”
I’m inclined to believe the source is real because I’ve discovered, Katya was a real person - Ekaterina Zhivaya - and was actually Trina’s maid, my source being “Претерпевшие до конца. Судьбы царских слуг, оставшихся верными долгу и присяге,” aka “Endured to the end. The fate of the royal servants who remained faithful to duty and oath.”

From August Sisters of Mercy (“Н. Зверева, Августейшие сестры милосердия”, here's a link a diary entry backs up both Katya’s existence and OTMA’s torment of her: “Sunday, February 1...Marie Baryatinsky drank tea. Alexey walks, but still limps. Dad cabled out of the way. [Telephoned?] Then tortured and scared Masha and Katya, the girls of Trina.” “Masha” was another of Trina’s maids, Maria Kulakova. Tatiana’s diary entry for February 1 mentions “We drank tea with Mom and Maria Baryatinsky. Then we scared the girls.”
Tatiana’s February 1 diary entry is in Helen Azar’s book for Tatiana’s letters and diaries, but neither Olga’s “locked Katya in the W.C.” or “tortured and scared Masha and Katya” are included in Azar’s Olga book. So basically I’m very confused and want to find the W.C. quote super bad, because I know it is probably real, and the implications are so interesting!!

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