NICHOLAS II 2020 CALENDAR

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LIMITED PRINTING OF ONLY 200 COPIES!

I am pleased to offer copies of my 2020 calendar, dedicated to Emperor, Tsar and Saint Nicholas II, with a limited printing of only 200 copies!

Each month features an iconic full-page black and white photograph of Russia’s last monarch, printed on quality glossy stock.

Nearly 70 major holidays in the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Australia and Russia are featured, with room to write in your own special dates and events.

ALL net proceeds from the sale of each calendar will go into my research, including the cost of translating articles and news from Russian archival and media sources.

The price of each calendar is $10 + postage (rates are noted on the order page, link below). I can ship to any country by Canada Post

NOTE: the postage rates quoted are for SINGLE copies ONLY! If you want to order more than one calendar, then please contact me by email at royalrussia@yahoo.com

Payment can be made securely online with a credit card or PayPal or by personal check, money order or cash – click HERE to download and print a mail order form

Thank you for your support of my research and dedication to clearing the name of Russia’s much slandered tsar

© Paul Gilbert. 21 August 2019

Miniatures of Nicholas II and Alexandra Feodorovna

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Photo: Miniatures of Emperor Nicholas II and Empress Alexandra Feodorovna
Artist: Alexander Wegner

The Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Reserve recently acquired a collection of five miniatures that once adorned the brooches and pendants of the Empress Maria Feodorovna, wife of Emperor Alexander III, and mother of Emperor Nicholas II.

These unique items, had been kept in a private London collection shortly after the 1917 Revolution. The Tsarskoye Selo State Museum Reserve recently acquired them, the acquisition of which was made possible thanks to the help of patrons.

Among the portraits are miniatures of Emperor Nicholas II (in childhood, adolescence and adulthood) and Empress Alexandra Feodorovna.

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Photos: Miniature of Tsesarevich Alexandrovich in adolescence
Artist: Alexander Wegner

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Photo: Miniature of Tsesarevich Alexandrovich in childhood
Artist: Alexander Wegner

After the revolution, in 1919, Maria Feodorovna managed to take some of her jewellery, including these miniatures, with her when she left Russia into exile.

Later, her daughter, Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna, inherited her mother’s jewellery. She sold part of them to the English company RG Hennel & Sons, as evidenced by an inventory dated 29th May 1929.

The miniatures were made by the Academician of the Imperial Academy of Arts Alexander Wegner. The smallest of them has a size of only 8 × 6 mm.

The miniatures are currently on display in the Evening Hall Pavilion, which is located in the Catherine Park at Tsarskoye Selo.

© Paul Gilbert. 21 August 2019

Controversy over portrait of Empress Alexandra Fedorovna in Pavlovsk

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Portrait of Empress Alexandra Feodorovna. Artist: A. Muller-Norden. Canvas, oil. 1896

This lovely portrait of the Empress Alexandra Fedorovna is among my favourites. It reflects the Empress’s youth and beauty, years before the burdens of Court life and her son’s illness took their toll on her health.

Before the 1917 Revolution, the portrait hung in the Tsar’s Reception Room in the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoye Selo. It is currently in the collection of the Pavlovsk State Museum.

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Muller-Norden originally hung in the tsar’s Reception Room in the Alexander Palace

Given that neither Nicholas II and Alexandra Feodorovna lived at Pavlovsk, how did this portrait end up the palace-museum collection?

‘In 1951 a government decision handed the Alexander Palace to the Ministry of Defense. The Naval Department used the building as a top-secret, submarine tracking research institute of the Baltic Fleet. As a result, the former palace would be strictly off-limits to visitors for the next 45 years.

‘The palace’s stocks that were among the evacuated items in the Central Repository of Museum Stocks from the Suburban Palace-Museums passed to the Pavlovsk Palace Museum. A total of 5,615 items were moved from the palace to Pavlovsk. Of these, nearly 200 pieces were originally from the Alexander Palaces’ three ceremonial halls: the Portrait, Semi-Circular and Marble Halls. These include 39 pieces of porcelain, 41 paintings, 73 decorative bronze pieces, and 28 pieces of furniture.’

Source: ‘My Russia. The Rebirth of the Alexander Palace’ by Paul Gilbert. Published in ‘Royal Russia No. 3 (2013), pgs. 1-11

Since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, and in particular since the restoration of the Alexander Palace, the return of these objects has been a bone of contention between the two palace-museums. During a visit to Pavlovsk several years ago, I raised the subject with one of the Directors at Pavlovsk. “If we return these exhibits to the Alexander Palace, then we [Pavlovsk] will have nothing,” he declared.

Personally, I believe that Pavlovsk have a moral responsibility to return all of the items transferred there in 1951. Their history belongs to the Alexander Palace. It seems that the Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation Vladimir Medinsky will have the final say. Let us hope that he does the right thing, and order the return of these items to the Alexander Palace, where they can be put on display in the rooms from which they originated.

© Paul Gilbert. 20 August 2019

Emperor Nicholas II tests new uniforms for the soldiers of his army in 1909

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Emperor Nicholas II tests new uniforms for the soldiers of his army. Livadia 1909

In 1909, Vladimir Aleksandrovich Sukhomlinov (1848-1926) the Minister of War was at work on an important reform, the determination of the type of clothing and equipment to be worn and carried in future by every Russian infantryman. When considering the modifications proposed by the Minister, the following provides a convincing proof of the extreme conscientiousness and sense of duty which inspired Nicholas II, as head of the army. The Tsar wanted full knowledge of the facts, and decided to test the proposed new equipment personally.

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Emperor Nicholas II tests new uniforms for the soldiers of his army. Livadia 1909

He told only the Alexander Alexandrovich Mossolov (1854-1939), who served as Minister of the Court and the Commander of the Palace of his intention. They had the full equipment, new model, of a soldier in a regiment camping near Livadia brought to the palace. There was no falang, no making to exact measure for the Tsar; he was in the precise position of any recruit who is put into the shirt, pants, and uniform chosen for him, and given his rifle, pouch, and cartridges. The Tsar was careful also to take the regulation supply of bread and water. Thus equipped, he went off alone, covered twenty kilometres out and back on a route chosen at random, and returned to the palace. Forty kilometres — twenty-five miles — is the full length of a forced march; rarely are troops required to do more in a single day.

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Emperor Nicholas II tests new uniforms for the soldiers of his army. Livadia 1909

The Tsar returned at dusk, after eight or nine hours of marching, rest-time included. A thorough examination showed, beyond any possibility of challenge, that there was not a blister or abrasion of any sort on his body. The boots had not hurt his feet. Next day the reform received the Sovereign’s approval.

The Tsar regarded himself as a soldier — the first professional soldier in his Empire. In this respect he would make no compromise: his duty was to do what every soldier had to do.

Source: At the Court of the Last Tsar by A.A. Mossolov. English edition published in 1935

© Paul Gilbert. 9 August 2019

2nd International Nicholas II Conference – UPDATE!

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Today, I have received the blessing of His Grace Bishop Luke of Syracuse, Abbot of Holy Trinity Monastery, to host the 2nd International Nicholas II Conference at the Holy Trinity Monastery in Jordanville, New York in the Spring of 2021.

A number of historians and writers have already expressed interest in speaking at the Conference. I hope to confirm the actual date within the next few weeks.

The Holy Trinity Monastery is home to the Foundation of Russian History Museum, located in the Seminary. The conference, the museum and the beautiful Holy Trinity Cathedral combined will make a memorable visit for all who attend.

Truly, my prayers have been answered. I am so pleased that we can now honour Tsar-Martyr Nicholas II at the Holy Trinity Monastery in Jordanville.

While the event is still more than a year away, I wanted to share this wonderful news with all of you! I will continue to keep you posted of any new developments.

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«Прости нас, Государь»  «Forgive us, Sovereign»

Click HERE to read the summary + PHOTOS about the 1st International Nicholas II Conference, held on Saturday, 27th October 2018, in Colchester, England.

© Paul Gilbert. 8 August 2019

The Alexander Palace as a Museum 1918-1951

During the Soviet years, the Alexander Palace was established as a museum. This video shows a group walking through the former rooms of Nicholas II and his family. The year of 1918 is noted in the video, however, this is incorrect – PG

In 1918 the former residence of Tsar Nicholas II and his family was established as a museum and open to the public. The exhibit included the historical interiors
in the central part of the building and the private apartments of the last tsar and his family located in the east wing of the palace.

In 1919, the west wing was turned into a rest home for staff of the People’s commissariat for Internal Affairs (NKVD), while on the second floor of the east wing the former rooms of Nicholas II’s children became an orphanage named after the “Young Communards”.

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Enfilade of ceremonial halls of the Alexander Palace. 1920s

The Soviet regime were hostile towards the ‘Romanov Museum,’ and made constant threats throughout the 1930s to close the museum and sell off its treasures. Luckily, the museum staff managed to dissuade the government from this step and the museum operated up until the beginning of the Second World War.

In the first months after the Nazi invasion chandeliers, carpets, some items of furniture, eighteenth-century marble and porcelain articles were evacuated from the Alexander Palace. Most of the palace furnishings remained in the halls.

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Aa cemetery for members of the SS was established in front of the Alexander Palace 

During the occupation of Pushkin the palace housed the German army staff and the Gestapo. The cellars became a prison and the square in front of the palace a cemetery for members of the SS.

The palace survived World War II with minor damage, according to military records—unlike the Catherine Palace, the Palace of Pavlovsk and the Grand Palace of Peterhof, which were almost completely destroyed during the German occupation. Although the exterior was damaged, the majority of the interiors were reported as unharmed, with the exception of some rooms which received moderate to serious shell damage.

The palace had been looted by the retreating Nazi’s which resulted in many of the palaces works of art, furniture and other items being stolen. According to the Ministry of Cultural Affairs of the Russian Federation, registered inventory for the Alexander Palace had—30,382 items, of which 22,628 items were recorded as lost or stolen at the end of World War II.

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Representatives of the State Emergency Commission and museum workers examine the destruction of the large central hall of the Alexander Palace. Photo by S. G. Gasilov. May 1944.

At the end of the war the Alexander Palace was mothballed. Conservation work was carried out in the palace and in 1946 it was handed over to the USSR Academy of Sciences for the storage of the collections of its Institute of Russian Literature and to house a display of the All-Union Pushkin Museum. As a consequence in 1947-51 refurbishment began in the palace, in the course of which it was intended to restore the surviving Quarenghi interiors and extant fragments of décor and also to recreate the interiors from the time of Nicholas I and Nicholas II. However, during the work many elements in the décor of Empress Alexandra Feodorovna’s Maple and Palisander Drawing-Rooms, as well as Nicholas II’s (Moresque) Dressing-Room were actually destroyed. These rooms of the palace were recreated to a project by the architect L.M. Bezverkhny (1908–1963) “in accordance with the architectural norms of the time of Quarenghi and Pushkin”.

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Opening day of the All-Union Museum of A. S. Pushkin (Alexander Palace), on
10th June 1949

In 1951 a government decision handed the Alexander Palace to the Ministry of Defense. The Naval Department used the building as a top-secret, submarine tracking research institute of the Baltic Fleet. As a result, the former palace would be strictly off-limits to visitors for the next 45 years.

The palace’s stocks that were among the evacuated items in the Central Repository of Museum Stocks from the Suburban Palace-Museums passed to the Pavlovsk Palace Museum. A total of 5,615 items were moved from the palace to Pavlovsk. Of these, nearly 200 pieces were originally from the Alexander Palaces’ three ceremonial halls: the Portrait, Semi-Circular and Marble Halls. These include 39 pieces of porcelain, 41 paintings, 73 decorative bronze pieces, and 28 pieces of furniture.

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Pavlovsk’s collection today includes Imperial gowns originally from the Alexander Palace

It is also interesting to note that the Pavlovsk Palace Museum also have a large number of elegant evening gowns, dresses, shoes, hats, umbrellas, gloves, handbags, fans among other personal items of the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna and the Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, neither of whom ever resided in Pavlovsk. They are from the Alexander Palace, however, they are now on permanent display in the Museum of the Emperor’s Dress, which is located on the ground floor, of the northern semicircular wing of Pavlovsk Palace, the ground floor.

NOTE: this text has been excerpted from ’My Russia. The Rebirth of the Alexander Palace,’ published in Royal Russia No. 3 (2013), pgs. 1-11.

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The Museum of the Russian Imperial Family in the Alexander Palace is expected to reopen at the end of 2019, or early 2020. Under restoration since August 2015, the new multi-museum complex will feature a number of reconstructed historic interiors of Nicholas II and Alexandra Feodorovna. Click HERE to read more articles about the history and restoration of the Alexander Palace

© Paul Gilbert. 8 August 2019

The Conspiracy Against Nicholas II, an interview with Paul Gilbert

CLICK ON THE IMAGE ABOVE TO WATCH MY INTERVIEW

One year ago today – 7th August 2018 – my interview The Conspiracy Against Nicholas II, aired on YouTube, which to date has been viewed by nearly 20,000 people.

My seven-minute interview was one of a special six-part video series commemorating the Romanovs Martyrdom Centennial in 2018, prepared by the Monastery of St John the Forerunner Mesa Potamos in Cyprus.

During my interview I speak about the Tsar’s abdication in 1917, and the only two generals who remained faithful to their Sovereign. I go on to discuss the main plots which aimed to overthrow Nicholas II from his throne, and the betrayal by his ministers, generals, and even members of his own family.

Among the members of the Imperial family who were plotting against Nicholas II, were the Grand Dukes Nicholas Nicholaevich (1856-1929) and Nicholas Mikhailovich (1859-1919), and the Vladimirovich branch of the family, led by the power hungry Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna (1854-1920), the widow of Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich.

I also talk about some of the myths and lies regarding Nicholas’ II, such as his alleged weakness as a ruler, and the popular myth that his death at the hands of the Bolsheviks was met by indifference by the Russian people.

The video features beautiful colourized pictures of the Romanovs and other historical figures, by acclaimed Russian colourist Olga Shirnina, from the forthcoming book The Romanov Royal Martyrs, due to be published in September 2019.

© Paul Gilbert. 7 August 2019

The Truth About Nicholas II

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I am now less than $200 short of my goal – PLEASE help me achieve it . . .

I am reaching out to friends and supporters for donations to support me in my personal mission to clear the name of Nicholas II, and to those who share an interest in Russia’s last Imperial family.

Your donation helps support my work, including research, the cost of translations, maintenance of my news blog: Nicholas II. Emperor. Tsar. Saint., the organization and promotion of the 2nd International Nicholas II Conference in the United States (Spring 2021), other events, and more!

If you enjoy all the articles, news, photos, and videos, please help support my work in the coming year ahead by making a donation.

Click HERE to make a donation by CREDIT CARD or PAYPAL

or Click HERE to make a donation by GOFUNDME

Click HERE to make a donation by PERSONAL CHECK

Thank you for your consideration.

PAUL GILBERT. 27 July 2019

“Ekaterinburg was the last capital of the Russian Empire” – says Russian historian

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The Church on the Blood, built on the site of the Ipatiev House in Ekaterinburg

The Ural city of Ekaterinburg occupies an important place in the modern spiritual life of Russia. This conclusion was reached by Russian historian *Peter Multatuli following the results of the International Festival of Orthodox Culture Tsar’s Days 2019.

“On a spiritual level, Ekaterinburg is the last capital of the Russian Empire, because the residence of the Sovereign was always considered the capital in Russia. Peter the Great never officially transferred the capital from Moscow to St. Petersburg, but since he lived there, it was the capital,” said Multatuli.

He noted that in 1918, for 78 days, Emperor Nicholas II and his family lived in Ekaterinburg, and that is why the Ural capital can be considered the last capital of the Russian Empire.

[It is important to note that many historians – myself included – firmly believe that the Tsar’s signing of the instrument of abdication, his status as Tsar remained inviolate and unassailable – PG]

“Petrograd and Moscow to one degree or another welcomed his overthrow, and they bear a greater responsibility in this than any other Russian city. No matter what anyone says, it was Ekaterinburg that served as the last Imperial residence, which, according to God’s special plan, became the Royal Golgotha,” added Peter Multatuli.

According to him, in the near future, Ekaterinburg will play a great role in the history of Russia, because “the city named after St. Catherine and becoming the Royal Golgotha ​​will be the city of Russian resurrection.”

[Once a bastion of Bolshevism, Ekaterinburg has slowly shed its status as the “capital of atheism”. Since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, the Urals has experienced a revival of faith, with Ekaterinburg at the into the center of Orthodox Russia in the Urals. Ekaterinburg has done more to honour Nicholas II and his family than any other city in Russia. Thanks to my visits to Ekaterinburg in 2012, 2016 and 2018, it is a city which I have grown to admire and love – PG]

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Peter Valentinovich Multatuli

*Peter Valentinovich Multatuli was born in Leningrad on 17 November 1969. He is a Russian journalist, historian and biographer. Multatuli is the author of numerous books and articles about the reign of Emperor Nicholas II. He is the great-grandson of Ivan Kharitonov (1872-1918), who served as the Head Cook of the Imperial family. He followed the tsar and his family into exile, and was murdered along with them in the Ipatiev House on 17th July 1918.

Multatuli’s comprehensive Russian language studies of the life and reign of Emperor Nicholas II are often overlooked or simply ignored by his Western counterparts.

© Paul Gilbert. 26 July 2019

New Exhibits Dedicated to the Holy Royal Martyrs Open in Ganina Yama

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New permanent outdoor exhibit on the grounds of the Monastery of the Holy Royal Martyrs

A photo exhibition “We” presents the work of Ekaterinburg photographer Yaroslav Kulakov, opened this week in the Museum and Exhibition Center of the Monastery of the Holy Royal Martyrs in Ganina Yama. The exhibit features photos of the participants of the Tsar’s Days and the Cross Procession over a 20-year period from 1998 to 2018.

“The Lord has not created anything more beautiful than a spiritual and joyful human face,” said Yaroslav Kulakov. Many of his photographs have become historical. The photographs include the first designer of the monastery, Tatiana Alekseevna Petkevich, icon painter Tatiana Fedorovna Vodicheva, the confessor of the monasteryAbel (Odintsev) among many others.

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New permanent outdoor exhibit on the grounds of the Monastery of the Holy Royal Martyrs

A second exhibit, a permanent outdoor exhibition dedicated to the Imperial Family and their faithful companions who perished with them on the night of 16/17 July 1918, also opened on the grounds of the monastery.

The exhibition which is located near the monument to Emperor Nicholas II, includes 12 stands featuring a photo and biography of members of the Imperial family and their faithful retainers.

This brief, yet information excursion into Russian history will help those who are just starting to get acquainted with the history of the Holy Royal Family.

The photo exhibition “We” will run until 13th September 2019, in the Museum and Exhibition Center of the Monastery of the Holy Royal Martyrs in Ganina Yama, from 10:30 to 16:30 daily, except Monday.

© Ekaterinburg Diocese / Paul Gilbert. 26 July 2019