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Russian Personalities

People well-known in art, sport, film, fashion

Category Archive: History

Lavrenti Beria – Soviet politician

Lavrenti Beria – Soviet politician

Lavrenti Beria – Soviet politician

Lavrenti Beria was a Soviet politician and police official, chief of the NKVD (1938-1946), member of the Communist Party (1917-1953).
Lavrenti Pavlovich Beria was born in 1899 in a village in the Georgian Republic. He was the son of a Georgian peasant.
He entered the Baku Polytechnic for Mechanical Construction in 1915 and graduated four years later.
In March 1917 Beria joined the Bolshevik wing of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party. He participated in the Russian Revolution as an underground soldier and counterintelligence agent in the Caucasus.
In 1921, his career in the Soviet secret police began. Beria’s influence grew as the political police played an increasing role in Georgian politics. His career was successful because he helped to engineer the defeat of the national communists, who wanted Georgia to retain some form of independence from Moscow.
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Russian Noble Prize winners

Russian Noble Prize winners

Russian Noble Prize winners


Russia can boast a lot of the Noble Prize laureates in many fields of science. Among them are:
1904 – Physiology and Medicine, Ivan Petrovich Pavlov for his work on the physiology of digestion.
1908 – Physiology and Medicine, Ilya Ilyich Mechnikov for his work on immunity.
1933 – Literature, Ivan Alexeevich Bunin for artistic excellence and the continuation of the tradition of Russian classics in lyrical prose.
1956 – Chemistry, Nikolay Semenov for research in the mechanism of chemical reactions.
1958 – Literature, Boris Leonidovich Pasternak for significant achievement in contemporary lyrical poetry, as well as the continuation of the traditions of the great Russian epic novel. Pasternak refused the Prize.
1958 – Physics, Pavel Alexeevich Cherenkov, Igor Evgenievich Tamm and Ilya Mikhailovich Frank for the discovery and interpretation of the Cherenkov Effect.
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Boris Skosyrev – king of Andorra

Boris Skosyrev - king of Andorra

Boris Skosyrev – king of Andorra


Boris Skosyrev was an adventurer, a Russian emigre. In 1934 he became the king of Andorra. His life was more like an adventure novel than a reality.
Boris Mikhailovich Skosyrev was born on June 12, 1896 in Vilnius, the Russian Empire. He was born into the family of Mikhail Skosyrev and his wife Elizaveta Dmitrievna.
In 1917 his father was a chief of the 7th district of Vilna province. It is known that during the World War I Skosyrev was attached to the British Armored Division. Then he was in the UK and, according to him, performed a series of secret orders of the British Government.
By 1923 Skosyrev had Dutch citizenship.
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Mikhail Shchepkin – Russian actor

Mikhail Shchepkin – Russian actor

Mikhail Shchepkin – Russian actor

Mikhail Shchepkin was a Russian actor, one of the founders of the Russian actor’s school. He revolutionized acting styles with his realistic portrayals.
Mikhail Semenovich Shchepkin was born on November 6 (17), 1788 in Kursk province into a family of the serfs.
From 1799 to 1801 he studied at the Sudzhansky public school. During his studies, in 1800, he played his first role in Sumarokov’s comedy – Vzdorschitsa.
In 1801-1802 he played in a serf theater of Count G. S. Volkenshtein.
In 1805, he performed on the professional scene for the first time. Since that time, with the permission of Count G. S. Volkenshtein, Shchepkin played in Barsov Brothers Theater.
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Nadezhda Krupskaya – Soviet educator

Nadezhda Krupskaya – Soviet educator

Nadezhda Krupskaya – Soviet educator

Nadezhda Krupskaya was a revolutionary, educator, head of the Chief Committee for Political Education and deputy head of the Commissariat of Enlightenment, full member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party (1927-1939), wife of Vladimir Ilich Lenin. She also was an honorary member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. Krupskaya was awarded the Order of Lenin (1935) and the Order of the Red Banner of Labor.
Nadezhda was born on February 14, 1869 in St. Petersburg into a poor aristocratic family.
In 1887, she finished women’s private school with a gold medal.
In the 1890s, she taught in workers’ evening and adult education schools. In Marxist circles she met Vladimir Ilich Ulyanov (Lenin). When she and Lenin were both arrested in 1895 and 1896, she followed him to Siberia as his fiancee and later as his wife. While in exile, Krupskaya wrote her most famous work, The Woman Worker (first published in 1901 and 1905).
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Grigori Rasputin – mystic man

Grigori Rasputin – mystic man

Grigori Rasputin – mystic man

Grigori Rasputin was a mystic and holy man, a peasant from the village Pokrovskoe, Tobolsk Province. He gained worldwide fame thanks to the fact that he was a family friend of the Russian Emperor Nicholas II. In the 1900s he was known as “the Tsar’s friend”, “an old man”, the seer and healer among certain circles of Petersburg society.
Rasputin was born on January 10, 1869. In 1902 he left Pokrovskoye. By then, his common-law wife Praskovya gave birth to three children.
He wandered over all Russia, made two pilgrimages to Jerusalem, and roamed both in the Balkans and in Mesopotamia.
On December 29, 1903, Rasputin appeared at the religious Academy of St. Petersburg. Grigori never held a formal position in the Church, but people recognized him as a starets (elder, wise counselor). His spiritual gifts apparently included healing.
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Saints Peter and Theuronia – The Story of Their Love

Saints Peter and Theuronia

Saints Peter and Theuronia

Prince Peter ruled Murom at the beginning of the 13th century. He was handsome, brave and strong in his faith. He opposed a filthy serpent that was encouraging people to sin by luring them with vices. In the fierce battle evil was defeated, but Prince Peter was wounded. Only a country girl named Theuronia could cure his painful sores. She asked the prince to marry her after his recovery as a payment. Peter eagerly gave his word. Theuronia made an herbal mixture, crossed it as if she were calling the Holy Spirit into it and asked the prince to rub the medicine into his sores, leaving one small wound untouched. Prince Peter did so and he was healthy again. He had hardly gotten better, however, before he drove the promise to marry the girl from his head.
That night, the sores all over his body appeared again. In a dream he saw an angel that pointed to the sin he had committed by neglecting the girl who had cured him. Peter traveled the hard road alone to Theuronia’s place. He begged the girl to forgive him and Theuronia cured him once again. Their wedding took place in Murom on St Peter’s Day.
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