Author Topic: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson  (Read 254529 times)

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Offline Georgiy

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #195 on: November 06, 2005, 07:50:47 PM »
Well, I haven't re-read this book in ages, and it's not really one that I care to pick up for light reading. I have a few qualms about it, and tend to agree with Rskkiya and Real Anastasia's opinions.

Certainly, it doesn't seem like the authors really understand Orthodoxy or Sainthood within the Orthodox Church from what I recall of the passages pertaining to that. That for me was the biggest disappointment with the book. I am not saying that everyone must agree with the Orthodox Church's point of view about the Romanovs, but ISTM that the authors just don't get it, and also don't think it's worth getting.

Now as for the rest, it is good in that it has in one volume all the bits and pieces scattered through a plethora of other books. The execution, while gory, I think, should be more widely read, albeit, a bit editted perhaps, but it shows quite clearly how the stuff like it was all over in seconds, Alix and Olga cross themselves, everyone instantly dead except Alexei and Anastasia, who are then very quickly and neatly killed, is a ridiculous myth. That may be the more redeeming part of the book.

As for the foibles and character flaws of the Romanov family - well, everyone has them, we are none of us perfect. They were not sanctified for being wonderful people, but for the way that they met their fate. The fact that they screamed or tried running about the room to escape the bullets in their last minutes of terror does not in any way detract from their Passion-bearing status - even Christ on the cross called out asking why God had forsaken Him, and spent hours before in agony (of soul) in Gethsemane.

What I do not like about the portrayal of their character flaws is that it is unbalanced - it is like they want to show so much the worst sides of their characters that their positive aspects get altogether glossed over.

Offline Belochka

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #196 on: November 06, 2005, 09:01:23 PM »
Quote
Certainly, it doesn't seem like the authors really understand Orthodoxy or Sainthood within the Orthodox Church from what I recall of the passages pertaining to that.

What I do not like about the portrayal of their character flaws is that it is unbalanced - it is like they want to show so much the worst sides of their characters that their positive aspects get altogether glossed over.


Thank you Georgiy for expressing your thoughts so perfectly and with integrity.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Belochka »


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Offline Sarushka

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #197 on: November 06, 2005, 09:25:04 PM »
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Now as for the rest, it is good in that it has in one volume all the bits and pieces scattered through a plethora of other books.


Thanks for saying that! I can get as sick of rehashes  as the next guy, but there is value in having such a mass of research gathered together in one place.
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Offline Tania+

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #198 on: November 06, 2005, 09:29:38 PM »
Well stated, and expressed. I agree with you Georgiy in particular, as many posters seem to want to address and focus on the flaws of their IH. You said it quite well :

"What I do not like about the portrayal of their character flaws is that it is unbalanced - it is like they want to show so much the worst sides of their characters that their positive aspects get altogether glossed over"


But this was for me, the most important part of your quote:

"As for the foibles and character flaws of the Romanov family - well, everyone has them, we are none of us perfect. They were not sanctified for being wonderful people, but for the way that they met their fate"

"The fact that they screamed or tried running about the room to escape the bullets in their last minutes of terror does not in any way detract from their Passion-bearing status - even Christ on the cross called out asking why God had forsaken Him, and spent hours before in agony (of soul) in Gethsemane"

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Offline Belochka

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #199 on: November 06, 2005, 10:18:00 PM »
Quote

Thanks for saying that! I can get as sick of rehashes  as the next guy, but there is value in having such a mass of research gathered together in one place.


Researching for a book is an intense exercise, but how one uses and interprets the material in their discovery process, are the most crucial considerations.
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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #200 on: November 06, 2005, 10:29:53 PM »
Well said, Georgiy.  Martyrdom is not pretty at all at the time it occurs.  No one likes to suffer; though suffer we all must.  If the brave little Ataman thrashed about like the soldier he wanted to be, if the pretty flirt tried to flee, if the good doctor asked, 'so you are not taking us anywhere?', it only means that God Himself made saints of human beings just like the rest of us and can save to the uttermost all those that trust in Him.

I have quibbles with FOTR about all the determined iconoclasty I came across, but have to admit there are some glimmers of truth mixed in with all that is unattractive in the book.  If the book had only been more concise and less contentious in tone, there would have been no problem with it at all because it does form a compendium of many sources that are now out of print, however speculative or erroneous they may have turned out to be.

Offline imperial angel

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #201 on: November 07, 2005, 10:57:31 AM »
So the thread on this book has really expanded.. I can't see what there is debate. I will say that when I read this book, it really expanded my view of the Romanobs, and every page had new info I had never read before. With all the books on the Romanovs, this is a achievement. I liked the first part of this book best. I thought some of the author's sentiments could be my own. I will post my review sometime, though in view of everyone's enlightened opinions, does it really matter? ;)

Offline imperial angel

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #202 on: November 07, 2005, 11:01:02 AM »
Reading some of these posts more.. well, you could object to parts of their opinion/appraisel of the Imperial Family. I remember I was not entirely comfortable with that. However, I enjoyed the new information, which made me even more fascinated with the Romanovs.

Offline matushka

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #203 on: November 07, 2005, 04:23:07 PM »
Belochka, you told about inaccuracies, some others about mistakes, souspicious sources. Could you detailed which informations in the book are suspicious, not exact?
Not being a specialist of the Romanov's death I modestly have to say that I found a lot of new informations.
As Georgy, as Belochka and other I dislike the tone, the spirit of the book, the total and affiched deny of spirituality. I would also, as you did, seriously critize the way the authors portrayted the family. My impression was first that they decided once for all that the members of the family are not at all interesting and good people, and they want to show that, second that they have the desire to demythifie all what concerned the Romanov and they are doing that with acharnment in any case. The authors, for example are doing a great deal of this Maria's letter "no one loves me". I see here the usual feeling of a shy girl in a big family, the normal feeling of a child who had just heard some stricts words from her mother because she did something wrong. And the simple fact Maria write it shows that the communication was good with her mother. The same with the fact the girls stayed with AF in Ekaterinburg in spite of going for a walk with the others. The authors see here some despotism and egoism from AF. I remember letters of Olga and Tatiana in 1912 to their mother. They are about to live, AF will stay. The 2 girls - and they do not know the sister writes also - are ready to stay with her. The mother answer she does not want, they have to go and have good time, she do not want to choice. The girls probably wanted to stay with their mother.
I think every little detail the authors quote and their own interpretation about the characters of the family could be reinterpreted in a more calm, not so ideological way.

Offline elfwine

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #204 on: November 07, 2005, 07:52:01 PM »
    All that I could suggest is the possibility that the 'less than rosy family' life is offered up to counteract the 'pretty and sweet family' image which is mythologised in so many documentaries and books. It made them seem more real to me than the 'perpetually psalm singing milktoasts' that I use to think NAOTMAA were.... :P
   I am NOT Orthodox (!)  but I guess that a "cranky" saint is still as saintly as a meek, bland one.  ;)

We'll never know what was the actual situation - perhaps it was somewhere between these two extreams.

elfwine  
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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #205 on: November 08, 2005, 07:19:48 PM »
    Good point, I can see the political aspects behind the ROCs choice of sanctifying (is that the word?) them as Passion Bearers (as far as I am able to understand this title - as I am not Christian) and FOTR does make the Romanovs seem more human and less "marble".

    I don't think that the arguements made by King and Wison about the DNA evidence are accurate.

*You wisely commented that many people here may not wish to have their "sugar coated Imperial family image" disturbed.
*This is a very good point!

While I never thought of them as "sugar coated" I will consider this suggestion very carefully and reread this book.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by rskkiya »

Offline Georgiy

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #206 on: November 08, 2005, 07:48:20 PM »
Rskkiya - the Orthodox term for making someone a Saint is that they are glorified. The Roman Catholics use a different term.

I for one, appreciate that the Romanovs, like all people had their foibles, and their good and bad sides. That they are Passion-bearers does not make them any less Saints, or of some kind of lesser status as Saints. Saints are Saints. Often times, people have lead quite dreadful lives up to the end, but then redeemed themselves. I think the Orthodox Church has many Saints like that. I think our Saints shine through with their humanity and their reality and closeness to us. Some kind of Holier-than-Thou marble statue does not seem to me to be a Saint. (That is not to say that many, many Saints lead very Holy lives which are worthy of our emulation; rather that reading the Lives of the Saints, it is for me their humanity that shines through, and their eventual salvation and attainment of theKingdom of Heaven - and it is such that we are called to imitate.)

Sorry for going off on a religious ramble here.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Georgiy »

Offline elfwine

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #207 on: November 09, 2005, 06:20:15 PM »
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Rskkiya - the Orthodox term for making someone a Saint is that they are glorified. The Roman Catholics use a different term.

I for one, appreciate that the Romanovs, like all people had their foibles, and their good and bad sides. That they are Passion-bearers does not make them any less Saints, or of some kind of lesser status as Saints. Saints are Saints. Often times, people have lead quite dreadful lives up to the end, but then redeemed themselves. I think the Orthodox Church has many Saints like that. I think our Saints shine through with their humanity and their reality and closeness to us. Some kind of Holier-than-Thou marble statue does not seem to me to be a Saint. (That is not to say that many, many Saints lead very Holy lives which are worthy of our emulation; rather that reading the Lives of the Saints, it is for me their humanity that shines through, and their eventual salvation and attainment of theKingdom of Heaven - and it is such that we are called to imitate.)


8) WOW  8)
Good point ...Its often easy - and maybe a bit lazy - to percieve SAINTS as dry or just too remote or to full of  holiness - but as you pointed out so well, it's their Redemption thats key. I don't know if I beleive, but you made a very valid point. Seeing NAOTMAA as tired, cranky bored and fussy makes them more sympathetic to me as simple human beings - and maybe as saints as well.

elf
(who is very thoughtful about saints now!)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by elfwine »
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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #208 on: November 09, 2005, 07:04:10 PM »
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Rskkiya - the Orthodox term for making someone a Saint is that they are glorified. The Roman Catholics use a different term.

I for one, appreciate that the Romanovs, like all people had their foibles, and their good and bad sides. That they are Passion-bearers does not make them any less Saints, or of some kind of lesser status as Saints. Saints are Saints. Often times, people have lead quite dreadful lives up to the end, but then redeemed themselves. I think the Orthodox Church has many Saints like that. I think our Saints shine through with their humanity and their reality and closeness to us. Some kind of Holier-than-Thou marble statue does not seem to me to be a Saint. (That is not to say that many, many Saints lead very Holy lives which are worthy of our emulation; rather that reading the Lives of the Saints, it is for me their humanity that shines through, and their eventual salvation and attainment of theKingdom of Heaven - and it is such that we are called to imitate.)

Sorry for going off on a religious ramble here.


Thanks for the clarification...
While I still become confused regarding the rather subjective issue of any 'act of redeption' on the part of NAOTMAA - I remain highly moved at the insite that you express on this point.

well done sir

rs

Offline imperial angel

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Re: The Fate of The Romanovs,Greg King,Penny Wilson
« Reply #209 on: November 10, 2005, 10:53:24 AM »
Here is my review of this book around the time I read it ;)
Review of the Fate of the Romanovs by Greg King and Penny Wilson. April, 2004.

This is the latest, but probably not the last word on the subject of the Romanovs and their murder. The event that occured on July17, 1918 has provided controversy since it happened and will probably do so until the end of time. From modern debates about whether Anastasia is present in group of remains, to 1918 rumours about the Romanovs, there has always been a obsessive interests in the events surrounding their end. It seems that the combination of royalty, wealth, and death will never cease fascinating people. You do have to conclude its not that surprising.

This is the first book written on the end of the Romanovs since 1995. The last book was the last days of the Romanovs by Robert K. Massie. That book was a good entertaining introduction to the subject and was definitive at the time. But since then, many things have happened in the story of the romanov remains. This book brings you up to date on them. This is excellant reading although this book is 528 pages long. I have not read a more informative book about the Romanovs for a long time.

The most interestimg information in this book is that about the Grand Duchesses in captivity. You cannot find this information elsewhere. The information on the debates surrounding the reamins of Anastasia is also very interesting. Based on the evidence in this book you have to conclude, that Anastasia remain's are missing, not those of Marie. But this is not definite proof that Anastasia survived or that Anna Anderson was Anastasia. Anna Anderson has been conclusively proven false. It is unlikely that Anastasia or Alexei survived but it was possible. Anastasia is more likely to have survived given the Tsarvitch's hemophilia. Because there are no remains proven to be theirs the authors are right to leave their deaths a open question. The authors write in conclusion that in death, the Romanovs have become icons, and that this is their ultimate fate. This is very true.