L a - b e a u t é - s a u v e r a - l e - m o n d e ~ D o s t o ï e v s k i

L a - b e a u t é - s a u v e r a - l e - m o n d e  ~  D o s t o ï e v s k i

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Imperial picnics, circa 1913

This first group of pictures was apparently taken at Tsarskoe Selo in 1913 after a horse racing event.

A simple picnic for the Romanovs - in this case, mostly the Vladimir branch of the family - might seem a long ways off from our current understanding of the word "simple" or even the word "picnic". And I can't imagine it was all that we might expect of such a gathering in the way of comfort; I don't think military uniforms or corseted gowns and elaborate picture hats are quite what most of us would choose for a relaxing meal all'aperto.

(There may be other people in these pictures who might be identified with a bit of research, but I am so trying to be less self-indulgent with my time....)

Left to right: Prince Ioann Konstantinovich; Grand Duke Andrei Vladimirovich; his sister-in-law the Grand
Duchess Victoria Feodorovna; two unknown ladies. The Grand Duchess - granddaughter of Queen Victoria,
sister of Marie of Roumania, and wife of the eldest Vladimir son - was formerly married to the Grand Duke
Ernst Ludwig, brother of the Tsaritsa. She was therefore Alexandra's ex-sister-in-law, an awkward situation
that did nothing to aid the strained relationship between the resentful Tsaritsa and the fractious Vladimirichi.
Left to right: Her back to us, in the round hat, Grand Duchess Victoria; Prince Ioann
Konstantinovich, smiling; at far right, looking at the camera, Grand Duchess Vladimir.
Left to right: Again, the back of the Grand Duchess Victoria Feodorovna; Grand Duke Andrei
Vladimirovich; Prince Ioann Konstantinovich; at far right, Grand Duchess Vladimir.
The Grand Duchess Vladimir with her granddaughters, Princesses Kira and Maria Kirillovna.


Left to right: Princess Nicholas of Greece, daughter of Grand Duchess Vladimir; Grand Duchess Victoria
Feodorovna; the latter's mother-in-law, Grand Duchess Vladimir; in the white coat, the Grand Duchess
Vladimir's eldest son, Grand Duke Kirill Vladimirovich; Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich.


At left, facing the camera, Princess Olga Orlova; Grand Duke Boris Vladimirovich; unknown; Prince Ioann Konstantinovich.


At center, Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich; at far right, Prince Ioann Konstantinovich.


The Grand Duchess Victoria Feodorovna - called "Ducky" in the family - and her daughters, Princesses Kira and Maria Kirillovna.


  1. Not circa 1913, I would say spring of 1914, Kirill and Ducky weren't allow to enter in Russia, until the end of 1913, when Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna using her influence convinced her nephew Tsar Nicholas II to accept the wedding of her eldest son, in spite of the opposition of Empress Alexandra, Grand Duchess Elisabeth Fyodorovna and even some Bishops who considered against the rules of the Church this "wedding".

    1. Actually, by every source I have, the two returned to Russia in May of 1910, though all you say about the negotiations and opposition regarding their rehabilitation is very true. And Ducky very much enjoyed her few years in the spotlight avant la chute.

      (And, entre nous, of course there are many of us who consider that the irregularity of their union makes the pair's subsequent actions and pretensions, and their descendants' presently claimed status - rather - dubious...?)

    2. are we sure this is russia? maybe its hesse or greece

    3. Since nearly everyone in the photographs is Russian (or married to a Russian), I think it highly unlikely that the setting could be anything - but - Russia.

  2. Have never seen these photos before! Very interesting!