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Entries / Rasputin G. E. (1869-1916)

Rasputin G. E. (1869-1916)

Categories / Religion. Church/Personalia
Categories / Social Life/Personalia

RASPUTIN Grigory Efimovich (1869-1916, Petrograd), religious preacher from a Siberian peasant family, spiritual tutor and close friend of the family of Emperor Nicholas II. In his religious views he was close to the so-called Khlysts. Being semi-literate, Rasputin nevertheless studied the Holy Scripture well enough and freely interpreted it in spiritual conversations. In the 1890s, he became a wandering pilgrim, visiting a great number of monasteries in Siberia and European Russia, Athos (Greece) and Jerusalem. He came to St. Petersburg for the first time in 1904, at the recommendation of the vicar of Kazan Eparchy and was welcomed by the rector of St. Petersburg spiritual academy Bishop Sergius and the religious hierarchy. On November 1, 1905, Rasputin met with Nicholas II and the Empress Alexandra Fedorovna. From the end of 1906, contact between Rasputin and the Imperial Family became continuous; they spoke by telephone and exchanged telegrams. Their meeting places included Alexander's palace and the house of the Lady-in-waiting A. A. Vyrubova, friend of the Empress Alexandra Fedorovna at 2/4 Tserkovnaya Street in Tsarskoe Selo. The influence of Rasputin on the empress, as a spiritual tutor and the only man who could relieve the suffering of the incurability ill Tsesarevich, was extremely great. Her support enabled Rasputin interfere in the actions of Emperor Nicholas II at home and abroad (renunciation of Russian participation in the Balkan War of 1912-13, the rise of St. Petersburg Metropolitan Pitirim, appointments of ministers in the years of World War I etc. were all influenced by Raputin). In St. Petersburg Rasputin lived in his own flat at 64 Gorokhovaya Street, where he almost daily received admirers and hundreds of visitors with different complaints and requests. Rumours about his drunken carouses and perverted amusements dispersed throughout the whole country and discredited the Imperial Family, but all attempts to achieve his dismissal by those close to Nicholas II failed. A plot with the intention of eliminatinating Rasputin was formed at the end of 1916: on the night of 17 December, 1916 Rasputin was murdered by a group of conspirators (Grand Prince Dmitry Pavlovich, Prince F. F. Yusupov, Deputy of the Fourth Duma V. D. Purishkevich, and others) in the Yusupov Palace at 94 Moika River Embankment. Rasputin’s body was lowered under the ice of the Malaya Nevka near Elagin Bridge. On 21 December 1916, Rasputin was buried in the presence of the Imperial Family in the unfinished chapel dedicated to St. Seraphim in the purlieu of Alexander's park in Tsarskoe Selo. During the days of the February Revolution of 1917 his body was disinterred and burnt in the boiler shop of the Polytechnic Institute.

Reference: Григорий Распутин: Сб. ист. материалов: В 4 т. М., 1997.

A. G. Kalmykov.

Alexandra Fedorovna, Empress
Dmitry Pavlovich, Grand Prince
Nicholas II, Emperor
Purishkevich Vladimir Mitrofanovich
Rasputin Grigory Efimovich
Vyrubova Anna Alexandrovna
Yusupov Felix Felixovich, Duke

Moika River Embankment/Saint Petersburg, city, house 94

The subject Index
Theological Academy
Alexander Palace (Pushkin)
Yusupov Palace (94 Moika River Embankment)
February Revolution of 1917
Polytechnical University