Stavka. 1 July. 1916.
I thank you heartily for dear letter NO. 535.
How nice that you were present at the moleben (Te Deum) and took leave of our Cossacks! Today my ouriadnik Mouravitzky left me, and in his place arrived a new one with four crosses. He is called Svetlichny. The first was an excellent fellow - Baby loved him; he used to play all sorts of amusing tricks in the water, together with Nagorny, while bathing, and used to talk to Igor in Little Russian.
I send you a lot of photographs which were taken by Derevenko. He asks you to take all the ones you like best. Yesterday's performance at the cinematograph was interesting - we were shown Verdun.
I permitted the families of the military to be present, so that all the side boxes were full of ladies and children, the chairs were occupied by the husbands, and the whole upper part, as usual, by soldiers. The air was not as good as (it is) without the ladies. I wonder why. I must finish. Daragan has arrived for 10 days. God guard you, my precious, sweet Sunny!
I kiss you and the girls tenderly.
NOTES: Ouriadnik - orderly, a military servant. NAGORNY: a sailor who was always in personal attendance on the Tsarevitch. and who accompanied the family to Siberia. He was killed by the Bolsheviks at Ekaterinburg.
Telegram. Stavka. 1 July, 1916.
Warmest thanks. I am sure that the leave-taking has passed off well. I shall see them here. At last I am free...
Stavka. 2 July, 1916.
MY PRECIOUS WIFY,
My warmest thanks for dear letter No. 536. 1 am writing, as usual, after lunch, having come in from the garden with wet sleeves and boots, as Alexey has sprayed us at the fountain. It is his favourite game with Solovoy, the French General Janin, Petrovsky, Gen. Williams and the Japanese. Great animation prevails while it lasts, and peals of laughter ring out; sometimes other guests take part in it as well. I keep an eye on order, and see that things do not go too far. I hope you will see this game when you arrive. It is so hot now that it does not take a minute to get dry. Solovoy is a cheerful and kindly lad, and Baby likes him very much. George has arrived - thanks for the greeting sent by him. He was very interested in Arkhangelsk, and tells all the details very well.
Old St. has already asked me to receive him; I shall do so to-morrow, on Sunday. He will probably bring with him the scheme of the chief question which was worked out during our last sitting.
There is a temporary lull now at the front, which will come to an end about the 7th. The Guards will take part too, because the time has come for breaking through the enemy's lines and taking Kovel. You will be here by then, ,and I shall be still happier!
God guard you and the girls! I kiss you passionately. Eternally yours, my love,
Telegram. Stavka. 2 July, 1916.
Many thanks. Of course young Besobrazov may be granted an extension of sick leave for another two months. We have a thunderstorm here too, but not a big one. Both kiss you tenderly.
Stavka. 3 July, 1916.
My OWN BELOVED SUNNY,
Many thanks for dear letter.
V. Dolg. has arrived, and Aunt Olga has passed through to Kiev on the same train. I did not manage to see her, as I was busy with the Staff.
There is again no time! Good news is coming from the Caucasus. Oh, how happy I am, and Baby too, to be seeing you soon!
God guard you, my darling Wify!
I kiss you tenderly and passionately.
Eternally your old
NOTES: V. Dolg.: Prince Dolgorouky. Aunt OLGA: the Dowager Queen of Greece.
Stavka. 4 July, 1916.
MY OWN TENDERLY BELOVED WIFY,
My warmest thanks for your dear long letter. Nicolai Mikh.. has arrived to-day to discuss several questions in connection with the Imper. Historical Society, as well as with regard to his last journey on the northern rivers. Needless to say, I shall receive any brave officer whom you may send to me. Let them ask through the Staff. I constantly receive officers, colonels and generals who are returning from the front, and invite them to lunch and dinner. Many of those who have been dismissed from their appointments come with complaints, and their cases are examined here. Mogilev is like an enormous hotel, where crowds of people pass through, and where one always sees the most diverse types of men.
The weather is simply wonderful - would that I could stay all day long in the water. While Alexey is splashing about near the bank I bathe not far away from him with Kira, Petrovsky, my Cossacks and sailors.
The 4th Sotnia has arrived this morning; I have said good-bye to them, though, as a matter of fact, they are not leaving till to-morrow morning. So many good friends!
May God guard you on your journey! This is my last letter.
I kiss you and the girls fondly, and am awaiting you eagerly.
Yours eternally, Sunny mine,
Telegram. Stavka. 5 July, 1916.
Hearty thanks for dear letters and cornflowers. It is very hot. Both are expecting your arrival with excitement. We kiss all fondly.
Telegram. Stavka. 12 July, 1916.
I am touched, grateful for the letter. He is feeling well temp. 36.6. It feels very sad and empty. Happy journey. Both embrace you closely.
Stavka. 13 July, 1916.
MY OWN BELOVED,
My heartfelt thanks for both your dear letters, for the little morning note from the train, which I did not read till day-time, and for the parting letter, which Baby handed to me during St.'s report. He is quite well, thank God! slept very soundly next to his old father, and is, as usual, full of life and energy.
It is I who ought to thank you, dear, for your coming here with the girls, and for bringing me life and sun in spite of the rainy weather. I am afraid that you will be tired after all the running up and down, hither and thither. Of course I did not succeed in telling you half of what I had intended, because, when I meet you, after having been parted for long, I somehow become stupidly shy, and only sit and gaze at you, which is by itself a great joy to me.
I am so glad that we shall meet before A.'s birthday I When we were coming back from the station Baby began to think aloud, and suddenly uttered, "Alone again," very tersely and clearly.
A small party of us are now going up the river to his favourite bank. The weather is calm and cloudy, very mild. God protect you, my beloved Sunny, and the girls!
I kiss you fondly.
Your old, tenderly devoted and adoring hubby
Stavka. 14 July 1916.
MY OWN DARLING:
Nicky's train was over 3 hours late; something had happened to the engine. I shall receive him before dinner The weather is fine, warm. I intend to send Baby for a row on the river, and shall myself go for a drive in the car; shall walk the latter part of the way over both the big bridges, take a boat at the white summer-house (dacha) which you saw, and meet Baby there.
I hope to take you there when you come next, as it will be a new walk.
We have scored some big successes on the Caucasian front. To-morrow our second offensive begins along the whole of Broussilov's front. The Guards are moving forward to Kovel I May God help our brave troops I I cannot help getting nervous before a decisive moment, but after it has begun a deep calm comes over me, and terrible impatience to hear the news as soon as possible.
Eristov is a very interesting man, and all that he says is clever and accurate. His ideas with regard to the war are also very sound. Walks and tea-drinking are very convenient for this sort of conversation.
Dear, ask Tatiana to send me a blue box of my notepaper of this size.
It is time to finish!
God guard you and the girls!
I kiss you tenderly, my own Sunny, the girls and A.
NOTES: NICKY: Prince Nicholas of Greece, son of King George I of Greece, generally referred to by the family as "Greek Nicky."
"Our second offensive" - the brilliant advance of the 11th Army under Sakharov. ERISTOV: Prince G. N. Eristov, a colonel in the Life-Guards and A.D.C. to the Tsar.
Stavka. 15 July, 1916.
I thank you tenderly for dear letter. It is a great joy to me to see and read what is written by your dear hand.
Yesterday I had a very lengthy and interesting conversation with Nicky. He has left this morning for Kiev to see Mamma, then he will again return to Pavlovsk and, of course, visit you.
I found him looking nervous and older, so I gave him an opportunity for speaking out and for explaining Tino's message. I must confess that the Allied diplomats have, as usual, made many blunders: by supporting this Venizelos we ourselves might suffer. Tino thinks that this policy of the Allies will imperil the dynasty, and will prove (to be) a foolish playing with fire.
All that Nicky told me is based on official documents, the copies of which he has brought with him. He intends to let only a very few people know of this, therefore I have decided to tell you before his arrival.
The old man leaves to-day. It is time to finish this letter. God guard you, my only and my all, my girl, Sunny, I kiss you ardently. Your old
NOTES: TINO: King Constantine of Greece.
Telegram. Stavka. 15 July, 1916.
Many thanks to you and Olga. Good news. A lovely day with a slight wind. Both kiss you tenderly.
Stavka. 16 July, 190.
MY BELOVED SUNNY,
Warmest thanks for dear letter. I have again no time for writing, as old Koulomzin has come with the report. The Guards attacked yesterday, and have moved forward considerably; thanks be to God!
They and Sakharov's army have captured over 400 officers, 20,000 men and 55 guns.-May God protect you and the girls! I kiss you tenderly, my darling Wify.
NOTES: SANHAROV: General V. V. Sakharov, commanding the 11th Army, had been one of the most efficient staff officers in the Japanese War. On the previous day he had entered Brody - BoehmErmolli's headquarters and in twelve days he took 40,000 prisoners and many guns.
Telegram. Stavka. 16 July, 1916.
Hearty thanks to you and Tatiana. The news continues to be good. Delightful weather. I think of you, kiss you tenderly.
Stavka. 17 July. 1916.
MY BELOVED SUNNY,
Thank you tenderly for dear letter.
Thank God, our brave troops, in spite of heavy losses, are breaking through the lines of the enemy and moving forward ! The number of prisoners taken and of heavy guns is increasing every day. The guns which we have taken are almost exclusively German, and a third of the prisoners are also German. - They cannot withstand our onslaught in the open field. The Guards are also attacking and performing miracles. I am very happy about Paul.
It is a good thing that you receive St. - he likes your suggestions.
We take the little cadet Makarov with us on our river trips - he is a good boy, and plays quietly with Baby. - Our vaccination has taken, so that, alas! we shall not be able to bathe for a few days.
I must finish. God guard you, my angel! I kiss you and the girls tenderly.
Stavka. 18 July, 1916.
I have again no time to write a long letter.
Vielepolsky has arrived, and I had a long time with him. He would very much like to see you and explain this stupid affair in a few words. You know everything, and so it would not take long.
Feodorov has arrived and V.N. is leaving to-day. It is clear but windy. I love you so deeply! May God keep you, my dear Sunny, and the girls! I kiss you tenderly,
Telegram. Stavka. 18 July, 1916.
I am deeply grateful to you and Anastasia. Your Siberians are attacking Brody and are performing miracles. A lovely dry day. Both kiss you tenderly.
Stavka. 19 July, 1916.
MY DARLING WIFY,
I thank you heartily for your dear letter and for N.P.'s telegrams, which I return herewith. I did not know that they had already taken part in such serious battles. God protect them I If only they will not throw themselves forward on a mad, thoughtless impulse 1 That is my constant fear I
The lists of killed and wounded officers are sent to Petrograd to the Glavn. Stab; here we receive only the lists of colonels and regimental commanders.
Just at present there is a lull there again; fresh reinforcements are being sent - The offensive will probably be renewed about the 23rd. The regiments have to be replenished constantly, and that takes a long time.
Yes, to-day it is exactly two years since this terrible war was declared. God alone knows for how much longer it will last!
Yesterday I received our Vielepolsky and Count Olsoufiev, a member of the Council of State, who has been to England, France and Italy. He has lost his head completely over the daughters of silly Misha. How funny I He saw Olga and Tatiana, at Iza's and told them the same thing. Now, my angel, I must finish God protect you and the girls! I kiss you tenderly and passionately
Your old hubby
NOTES: The first passage refers to the Gvardeisky Equipage.- Glavn.
Stab: Glavny Stab-Headquarters. IZA: the Baroness Buxhoevden, a favourite lady-in-waiting who accompanied the imperial Family to Tobolsk, together with Countess Ghendrikov and Me. Schneider, and was the only one of the party who managed to escape with her life.
Telegram. Stavka. 19 July, 1916.
I thank you and Olga heartily. It is colder, rained twice.
I have read the copies of both telegrams with interest. Both kiss you fondly.
Stavka. 20 July, 1916.
MY OWN DARLING WIFY,
Thank you heartily for your dear letter.
I send you this little note, which I received in Olga's letter-please tell me what I am to answer to her first question. You see, I am writing with my new pen, which you sent me by Chemodourov. Teteriatin is going to-day, after a five weeks' stay here. To-day is the anniversary of the moleben and the levee at the Winter Palace! ! Do you remember the crowd on the landing place when We were leaving? - How far removed all this seems, and how much has been lived through since then!
Yesterday I saw a man whom I liked very much - Protopopov, Vice-President of the State Duma. - He travelled abroad with other members of the Duma, and told me much of interest. He was formerly an officer in the Konno-Grenadiersky Regiment, and Maximovitch knows him well.
It appears that the Roumanians are at last prepared to take part in the military operations! The Turks have been ordered to send part of their troops from Constantinople to Galicia, to the assistance of the Austro-Germans.
This is curious; but so far they have not appeared.
Well, beloved Sunny, it is time to finish. God guard you and the girls!
I kiss you tenderly and passionately.
Your old hubby
NOTES: "Her first question." The Grand Duchess Olga had written about the dismissal of a lady-in-waiting.
Stavka. 21 July, 1916.
I thank you tenderly for dear letter. I have only just seen Voeikov, who has brought me your greetings. Yes, he is pleased at having got rid of the "Kouvaka" business.
I also had advised him not to be self-confident, especially on such grave questions as the end of the war! I like old Maximovitch very much - such a decent, honest man; it is pleasant to have dealings with him.
Please insist on the "old man" not appearing here before the 6th of August. - He was to go for a cure to the Romanov Inst. at Sevastopol, and yet Voeikov says that he intends to return here in a short time! I think this very foolish. As you are the only person to whom he listens, I beg you to write to him that he must rest for 3 weeks on the Siverskaia.
Eristov and Kozlianonov have gone - the first to Kiev, and thence to his regiiment. - I have given him a letter to deliver to Mamma. Mordvinov and Raievsky have arrived. The latter has become stout and is much more livelyprobably due to the war.
It is raining. I must finish.
May God guard you, my darling Sunny, and the girls! I kiss you ardently.
Eternally your old
NOTES: "Kouvaka" - the name of a mineral-water factory in the province of Penza which belonged to Voeikov. "old man" - Count Fredericks.
Telegram. Stavka. 22 July, 1916.
We both send Marie our best wishes, and thank you and Anastasia. Bad, rainy weather. We kiss you tenderly.
Stavka. 22 July, 1916.
My OWN DARLING,
Tender A thanks for sweet long letter.
I am glad that You think of adding a wing to your hospital, so as to have room for soldiers also. That is good and just. I really do not know what to advise Yedigarov. If he wants to continue in military service (which is the duty of everyone in war-time) it would be better for him to enter the Caucasian Division, but not your Crimeans, because they have already over 100 officers. Or perhaps one of the three Trans-Amur Cavalry regiments - they are magnificent regiments.
I am very sorry for him, but I cannot meddle with the private affairs of the Nijegorodzy. I forgot to congratulate you on the occasion of our Marie's namesday.
The weather is disgusting - cold, and it pours with rain every half-hour, but we shall nevertheless go for a drive in our cars, as it is bad for one to remain indoors all the time.In addition, we have a cinematograph performance this evening.
Grigorovitch has arrived - I received him yesterday; he is going to Arkhangelsk. Baby and I await your arrival with irnpatience - your charming presence is worth the running backward and forward, or "bustle," as you call it.
Now I must finish, my angel.
God guard you and the girls!
I kiss you tenderly and passionately.
Telegram. Stavka. 23 July, 1916.
We thank you and Olga heartily. The elbow of the left arm bends with difficulty, but there is no pain. He is in excellent spirits. It is showery, warmer. Both kiss everybody.
Stavka. 23 July, 1960.
MY BELOVED SUNNY,
I am heartily grateful for your dear letter. - The weather is still queer and disagreeable! The sun comes through every quarter of an hour, and then it rains in buckets. This morning, while we were still in bed, Alexey showed me that his elbow would not bend; then he took his temperature, and calmly announced that he had better stay in bed all day. - He had 36-5. As the weather is so damp I thought it would really be better for him to stay in bed. At present he is playing "Nain Jaune" with Voeik. and P.V. in our bedroom.
One of our Pages died suddenly just before breakfast, as he was shaving! - I am so sorry for him! He served a few years ago in the Sernenovsky Regiment in the mixed company at Gatchina. And after lunch I heard that the inspector of the local river communications, who frequently accompanied us on our walks, got under a car in the street and broke his leg.
Yesterday we saw an interesting performance at the cinematograph and were very pleased. - Baby is playing, making a great deal of noise; he is cheerful, and has no pains at all.
Of course his indisposition is due to this vile damp weather! My beloved, with what impatience I look forward to your coming I Baby, naturally, does so too. God protect you and the girls!
I kiss you all tenderly.
Eternally, Sunny mine, your
Stavka. 24 July, 1916
I thank you heartily for your dear letters. I can imagine how busy you are, and how all these receptions and drives try you. Poor Sunny! Perhaps you will get a little rest here, if I do not bother you with requests to go out here and there.
Sandro is here for two days. He tells me much about Mamma, Ksenia, who has gone there for a fortnight, and about Olga. Baby is quite well, thank God! He slept well, and is now getting up - 2-30 o'clock. - Feodorov does not allow him to go out yet, so that he should not move about too much. But two of his little friends will come to him, and they will play quietly indoors.
The weather has improved, the sun is shining brightly. Darling, this will be my last letter, as you are coming now.
May God guard you on the way!
In thoughts and prayers I am always with you!
Eternally, my beloved Wify, your old
Stavka. 24 July, 1916.
Hearty thanks for letter and telegrams. I shall be firm, and insist on compliance with my will. The elbow is better; got up from bed, but did not go out of doors. It is warmer: heavy rain only once. Both kiss you tenderly.
NOTES: "I shall be firm" - with Prince Alek of Oldenburg, in regard to a scheme of Professor Rhein's which the former was opposing. "R." in the next telegram refers to Rhein.
Telegram. Stavka. 25 July, 1916.
Hearty thanks. I received Alek this morning. We discussed many questions, but did not say a word about R. The elbow is well. We had a trip on the river. It is raming again. We kiss you tenderly.