Author Topic: Claimants: What harm are they doing?  (Read 7093 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

RomanovMartyrs

  • Guest
Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« on: March 15, 2010, 03:21:34 AM »
I have actually met many many claimants, most of which come forward here in private messages to me (after I requested them to through the reincarnation thread for a school paper I was working on). And many of them yes, are quite silly. While some could be taken seriously if you believe in that sort of thing.

It gives rise the the question, what harm are they doing?

This claimant forum has been extremely harsh on claimants. And while no, I don't believe any conspiracy story, and reincarnation is not a part of my religious beliefs, I see no harm in people saying what they believe, or what they want to believe.

So I'm asking everyone's personal opinions on the topic: What's the harm in someone saying they were Anastasia or whoever?


Thanks to repliers in advance, I'm much interested to hear some replies! :) And to reiterate so that I'm not attacked, no, I do NOT think myself a Grand Duchess, or whoever you wish. ;)

Offline Kalafrana

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 2912
    • View Profile
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2010, 11:24:17 AM »
To kick off, claimants who are around nowadays are probably not particularly harmful, because the claims they make can usually be easily demonstrated to be bogus. Nicholas, Alexandra and all their children died at Ekaterinberg and none produced other issue (there is quite an interesting thread on this Forum involving a person claiming to be descended from an illegitimate child that Nicholas fathered in London in 1891 - just at the time he was on his tour of the Far East).

However, in the 1920s and 1930s, the height of the 'claimant period' I think the various claimants did do harm to the surviving Romanovs. At the human level, there was all the personal distress caused to those such as Olga Alexandrovna and Irene of Hesse by Anna Andersen. 'Could this woman really be my niece? If I don't believe her, and she turns out to be...?' Further, there was all the disunity among the surviving Romanovs and all the damage caused to the public standing of the dynasty by the very public disputes, and suggestions which have lasted almost to the present day that, for example, Olga Alexandrovna recognised Anna Anderson as Anastasia but claimed not to for financial reasons alone.

By 'school paper' do you mean an academic article?

Ann

RomanovMartyrs

  • Guest
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2010, 01:18:35 PM »
Thanks for the reply- I quite agree with you. I guess I was leaning more towards claimants of today's harm, but the past is a good point too. One harm I myself could think up that may come from claimants of the '20s and '30s would've been had someone actually believed a claimant's stories, the name of the imperial family (real ones, that is) could be stained by a made up tale about their lives. It's my experience with claimants that if they believe they were Anastasia Romanova, they also believe, oh, I dunno, that aliens are controlling the government (and in some cases this hypothetical situation is in fact exactly what they believe!).

As for school paper- it was a research project for an end of year thesis I'm still (ugh) working on. I major in History and my paper is about claimants of reincarnated royalty.

BTW- My offer still stands for claimants to contact me, just do it soon, before May! :) As I've said, I won't judge you or treat you badly, I'll just ask some questions and let you be on your way. I don't even need your real name.

Dust_of_History

  • Guest
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2010, 07:21:46 PM »
I've always disliked the claimants. What they're saying might not be harmful but it is surely very disrespectful. I can understand that there were many claimants in the past but saying now that one of them might have survived or claiming to be a direct descendant is just rediculous. The only harm they are doing now is that young people who don't know much about the Romanovs could believe them. Those claimants are knowingly spreading incorrect facts and that makes me angry. 

Offline Holly

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 1411
  • www.otma.org
    • View Profile
    • otmaa.org
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2010, 01:57:00 PM »
Anyone claiming today to be a Romanov in any sense isn't exactly "harmful", as a claimant in the past may have been. The reason why it's not allowed here is because this is supposed to be an intellectual discussion board for historically relevant material, which reincarnation is not.
"Господь им дал дар по молитвам их размягчать окаменелые наши сердца за их страдания..Мне думается, что если люди будут молиться Царской Cемье, оттают сердца с Божией помощью."

http://www.otmaa.org -- Coming Soon.

Offline Forum Admin

  • Administrator
  • Velikye Knyaz
  • *****
  • Posts: 4665
  • www.alexanderpalace.org
    • View Profile
    • Alexander Palace Time Machine
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2010, 03:01:33 PM »
The harm claimants do, IMO, is that they cast doubt on the genuine facts of history. Their continued claims can confuse the uneducated and cause people to believe things that were never true. Years later, perhaps their claims can truly cloud the genuine history.

NOBODY should be allowed to press any claim without genuine supportive evidence.

My 2 kopecks.

FA

Offline jehan

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 260
    • View Profile
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2010, 10:34:55 PM »
The main harm that is being done here, (apart from the harm to the truth and to historical facts, which we should always be striving for) is to the claimants themselves.  Unless these claims are proven, and none of them have been, then they are lies and fabrications at worst, or fairy tales at best.  Don't these people owe it to their real ancestors to find out about them and honour their memories- not to make up claims about bogus relationships to real people?  What are they ashamed of in their own pasts, or what is lacking in their lives that they have to make themselves seem more important or interesting because of some fictional genealogy?

  Most of us come from humble origins.  These ancestors can be just as interesting- maybe even more so in their daily struggles and the real obstacles they faced than any prince or monarch. Researching one's real genealogy and family history will reveal more secrets and surprises than one would think possible.
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in. 
(leonard Cohen)

Offline DNAgenie

  • Boyar
  • **
  • Posts: 195
    • View Profile
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2010, 01:12:30 AM »
The really sad ones are those like "Granny Alina" in South Africa. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Granny_Alina. She made no specific claim in her own lifetime,  but the people she lived with believed she was Russian Royalty, and assumed that she must have been Maria Nicolaevna. DNA evidence has proved inconclusive so we will probably never know.

We do know that she was not Maria, but if she was not a complete fantacist (which is quite possible) who was she?

Offline TimM

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 1940
    • View Profile
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2010, 05:17:21 PM »
I think the worst time was in the 1920's and 30's.  A lot of people who personally knew NAOTMAA were still alive, friends and family that had gotten out.  It must have been horrible for them to see the names of their lost loved ones being used by a claimant like this.  Also, some might have originally hoped that the claimant really was whomever they said they were, only to have those hopes crushed when they met said claimant and saw just some phony con artist at work.

Rumour had it that the Tsar had a huge amount of money stored in foreign bank somewhere (Britain, France, and Switzerland being the most hinted at).  I can see why these people did this.  If they could "prove" they were the last survivor of the Imperial Family:  KA-CHINGGGG!!  Of course, that money has never turned up, if it even existed at all, so it was really all for nothing.

Thankfully, the DNA tests have finally exposed all those charlatans for the phonies they really were.
Cats: You just gotta love them!

richard_1990

  • Guest
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2010, 09:59:05 AM »
It's pretty obvious that the only harm the claimants are doing is to their own mental health.

I'm not really that familiar impersonators but did any of them other than Anna Anderson get support from European aristocracy? Or were the rest just dismissed as idiots?

Naslednik Norvezhskiy

  • Guest
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2010, 10:36:09 AM »
I think the claimants indirectly have done a lot of good for the reputation of NAOTMAA. Because they (and the interest the public took in them) inspired / outraged several historians to set out and research what the IF really were like and what their circumstances were. Without the claimants, the world might just have settled with the opinion that NAOTMAA only were reactionary, parasitical "enemies of the people" who deserved their fate.

The harm I think they are doing is that they draw attention to the murder of the IF as the gravest crime of the Bolsheviks and Soviets. If the Murder of the Romanovs overshadows collectivisation, the Katyn massacre, the Gulags or any other of the many Soviet atrocities, then that gives people a very slanted view of Soviet atrocities.
« Last Edit: April 16, 2010, 10:58:37 AM by Fyodor Petrovich »

Offline TimM

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 1940
    • View Profile
Re: Claimants: What harm are they doing?
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2010, 11:21:27 AM »
Quote
I'm not really that familiar impersonators but did any of them other than Anna Anderson get support from European aristocracy? Or were the rest just dismissed as idiots?

I'm not 100% sure, but it seemed the rest of them eventually vanished into obscurity.  Of course, they didn't have a decades long court case, like AA did (which she ultimately lost).
Cats: You just gotta love them!