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Project 1917 is a series of events that took place a hundred years ago as described by those involved. It is composed only of diaries, letters, memoirs, newspapers and other documents

As usual, I went to church. The time has been changed—all the clocks have been shifted one hour forward. I slept badly last night thanks to those vile mosquitoes—one more bit of sheer torture on top of all my other miseries and misfortunes.

To my indescribable joy, after four months of melancholy waiting, I at last received a whole package of wonderful letters from my beloved Alix. When I saw the familiar handwriting I felt as if I had come back to life and become a new person. I imagined what pleasure I would experience over the next few days as I read the letters.

I haven’t been outside - it was too hot, I spent my day reading. My mood is getting more and more gloomy and melancholic. Thankfully, there is some good news from the front, a lot of people have been captured, and many guns taken.

At four in the afternoon I came downstairs to join Olga, there was tea waiting for me and other delicacies.

She was foolish in the extreme heat to go with her daughters to the beach to see how Sandro and the boys are bathing. See more

Apraksina visited for breakfast, staying with me until tea. I was going to show her canaries but, unfortunately, some bandits had broken the lock and 60 birds disappeared without a trace - this vile rabble gone wild.

Very hot today, trimmed the roses. I have heard talk of riots in Sevastopol, of an admiral discharged. We sat by the river - it is our only comfort these days.

There was another incredibly humiliating event awaiting us that day. The commission arrived from Sevastopol and took us all to all to a kind of court at Svitsky house, where each of us individually had to answer questions relating to the searches. To tell the truth, I was so outraged by this new, and unexpectedly vile trick, that as I entered the room and saw them sitting behind the long table like judges, ready to question me like some thief or murderer, I was shaking with indignation and fury. But, fortunately, Sandro was with me. See more

It’s a bit colder today—I went out for roses once again. I have never seen such splendor before.

The first truly hot day. I went to church – today is the festival of the Holy Trinity. After breakfast I set off for Miskhor and on the way there, at the narrowest point of a bend in the road, a huge vehicle packed with soldiers drove out towards us. As there was no room to pass, it almost crushed us. I was outraged to see such shameless driving. They paid not the slightest attention at what was going on around them.

The days are all alike – no news. I had a conversation with a certain hussar we encountered in the garden, he’d just returned from the front and was polite to boot. As for the rest, one mustn’t expect anything of them, even basic greetings – they’re insolent people.

На самом деле 49 лет.I could not even send a telegram. There was no service! Lunched with everyone in another house, then wandered a little bit around my own. I do not want anything. Lunch and evening passed as always.

Zinaida Yusupova came for tea, full of concern and deeply shocked by all that had happened. Her hands trembled more than usual. Then we went for a stroll on foot with Zenia, Zina and Orbeliani; we can’t go by transport anymore because those scoundrels have taken all the petrol. I was fatally tired and I felt so horrific that I barely moved my legs; probably the body’s “contre coup” to all the anxiety and so on.

I was suddenly awoken at 5:30 in the morning by a knock at the door. In the terror of the twilight, I made out a man who loudly declared that he had been sent on behalf of the government to search the house. Despite my firm protestations, they pulled back the canopy, and the lieutenant said that I had to get out of bed. See more

Arrived in Kiev at 1o’clock. How things have changed! At the station there is no one, only on the platform civilians with red bows. Disgusting!

I feel awfully sick at heart– what else might happen? Lord, help us! Such cruelty! I feel very ashamed of everything that has happened. It is vital that all this should not affect the course of the war; otherwise, all will be lost. Nicky came to dinner. He stayed until eleven o’clock. Two huge red flags have been hung up above the City Duma right before Nicky’s eyes!

Age: 69
Lives in: Ai-Todor, Crimea, Russian Empire
Nickname: Minnie
Title: Empress of Russia


in Petrograd
in Moscow