Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin (Russian: Григорий Ефимович Распутин; IPA: [ɡrʲɪˈɡorʲɪj jɪˈfʲiməvʲɪtɕ rɐˈsputʲɪn]; 21 January [O.S. 9 January] 1869 – 30 December [O.S. 17 December] 1916) was a Russian peasant, mystical faith healer and a trusted friend to the family of Nicholas II, the last Tsar of Russia. He became an influential figure in Saint Petersburg, especially after August 1915 when Nicholas took command of the army at the front.
There is much uncertainty over Rasputin’s life and the degree of influence he exerted over the shy and irresolute Tsar and the strong-willed Alexandra Feodorovna, his wife. Accounts are often based on dubious memoirs, hearsay and legend.[note 1] While his influence and position may have been exaggerated—he had become synonymous with power, debauchery and lust—historians agree that his presence played a significant role in the increasing unpopularity of the Imperial couple. Rasputin is connected with the downfall of the Russian Monarchy; his disappearance would strengthen the throne. Rasputin was killed as he was seen by both the left and right to be the root cause of Russia’s despair during World War I.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Turn to religious life
- 3 Healer to Alexei
- 4 Controversy
- 5 Assassination attempt
- 6 Yar restaurant incident
- 7 World War I
- 8 Government
- 9 Murder
- 10 Perception
- 11 In popular culture
- 12 Gallery
- 13 Notes
- 14 References
- 15 Bibliography
- 16 External links
Grigori, Grigory or Grigorii Rasputin was born the son of a well-to-do peasant and coachdriver in the small village of Pokrovskoye, in the Tobolsk Governorate (now Yarkovsky District in the Tyumen Oblast) in the immense West Siberian Plain. The parish register contains the following entry for 9 January 1869 [O.S.]: “In the village of Pokrovskoye, in the family of the peasant Yefim Yakovlevich Rasputin and his wife,[note 2] both Orthodox, was born a son, Grigory.” The next day he was baptized and named after St. Gregory of Nyssa, whose feast day is on 10 January.
Grigori was the fifth of nine children. Only two survived—Grigori and his sister Feodosiya. He never attended school; according to the census of 1897 almost everybody in the village was illiterate. In Pokrovskoye, the young Rasputin was regarded as an outsider, but one endowed with mysterious gifts. “His limbs jerked, he shuffled his feet and always kept his hands occupied. Despite physical tics, he commanded attention.” The little that is known about his childhood was passed down by his daughter Maria, but all her memoirs are regarded as unreliable.
On 2 February 1887 Rasputin married Praskovia Fyodorovna Dubrovina (1866-1936), and together the couple had three children: Dmitri, Matryona and Varvara; two earlier sons died young. [note 3] In 1892  Rasputin abruptly left his village, his wife, children and parents. He spent several months in a monastery in Verkhoturye; Alexander Spiridovich suggested after the death of a child, but the monastery was enlarged in those years to receive more pilgrims. Outside the monastery lived a hermit by the name of Brother Makary. Makary had a strong influence on Rasputin, which led to Grigori’s giving up drinking and eating meat. When he arrived home he had become a zealous convert.
Turn to religious life
Rasputin’s claimed vision of Our Lady of Kazan turned him towards the life of a religious mystic. Around 1893 he travelled to Mount Athos, but left shocked and profoundly disillusioned, as he told Makary.
By 1900 Rasputin was identified as a strannik, a religious wanderer, although he always went home to help his family with sowing and the harvest. Occasionally he was regarded as a yurodiviy (“holy fool”), but usually as a starets (“elder”) by his followers. Rasputin did not consider himself to be a starets, who were usually older and lived in seclusion and silence. According to Baroness Sophie Buxhoeveden he was a “starets in making”.
According to Lili Dehn, Rasputin spoke an almost incomprehensible Siberian dialect. According to Andrei Amalrik, Rasputin “never produced a clear and understandable sentence. Always something was missing: the subject, the predicate or both.” It is obvious the strannik seldom preached or spoke in public, although in 1902 private gatherings in his house had to be disbanded. In 1903 Rasputin spent some time in Kiev, where he visited the Monastery of the Caves. In Kazan he attracted the attention of the bishop and members of the upper class. Rasputin then travelled to the capital to meet with John of Kronstadt and acquire donations for the construction of the village church. Pierre Gilliard writes that Rasputin arrived in 1905, Nelipa thinks it was in autumn 1904, Iliodor believed it was as early as December 1903. He carried an introduction to Ivan Stragorodsky, the rector of the theological faculty. Rasputin stayed at Alexander Nevsky Lavra; there he met with Hermogenes. Theophanes of Poltava who was amazed by his tenacious memory and psychological perspicacity offered Rasputin to live in his apartment. Rasputin was invited by Milica of Montenegro and her sister Anastasia, who were interested in Persian mysticism, spiritism and occultism. On 1 November 1905 (O.S.) Milica presented Rasputin to Tsar Nicholas and his wife Alexandra.
Prior to his meeting with Rasputin, the Tsar had to deal with the Russo-Japanese War, Bloody Sunday, the Revolution of 1905, bombs and a nationwide railway strike. In a city without electricity, the Emperor and Autocrat of All the Russias was forced on the 17th by Sergei Witte to sign the October Manifesto, to agree with the establishment of the Imperial Duma and give up part of his unlimited autocracy. For the next six months Witte was the Prime Minister, though the real ruler of the country seems to have been General Dmitri Trepoff.
Healer to Alexei
In October 1906, at the request of the Tsar, Rasputin paid a visit to the wounded daughter of the next prime minister, Pyotr Stolypin. A few weeks before, 29 people had been killed after a bomb attack, including one of Stolypin’s children.
On December 15
"... Rasputin petitioned the Tsar, seeking to legally change his name. Grigori explained that six families in Pokrovskoye bore the surname Rasputin, and this was producing "every sort of confusion." Rasputin asked Nicholas "to end this confusion by permitting me and my descendants to take the name Rasputin-Novyi (Новый)," which means "Rasputin-New" or the "New Rasputin."
In March 1907 Rasputin received permission to change his last name. In April he was invited again to Tsarskoye Selo, this time to see Tsesarevich Alexei. The boy had received an injury which caused him painful bleeding. It was not publicly known—a state secret—that the heir to the throne had hemophilia B, a disorder that was widespread among European royalty.[note 4] When the doctors could not supply a cure, due to the lack of just one protein, the desperate Tsarina looked for other help. (When she was young she had lost her mother, her brother and her younger sister.) Rasputin was said to possess the ability to heal through prayer and was able to calm the parents and to give the boy some relief, in spite of the doctors’ prediction that he would die. On the following day the Tsesarevich showed significant signs of recovery.
Pierre Gilliard, the French historian Hélène Carrère d’Encausse and Diarmuid Jeffreys, a journalist, speculated Rasputin’s healing practice included halting the administration of aspirin, a pain-relieving analgesic available since 1899. Aspirin is an antiaggregant and has blood-thinning properties; it prevents clotting, and promotes bleeding which could have caused the hemarthrosis. The “wonder drug” would have worsened Alexei’s joints’ swelling and pain.
On 8 October 1912, Alexei received the last sacrament during another and particularly grave crisis (a swelling in the groin). The Romanovs were visiting their hunting retreat in the Białowieża Forest, but moved to Spała (then in Russian Poland). The desperate Tsarina turned to her lady-in-waiting and best friend Anna Vyrubova to secure the help of the peasant healer, who at that time was out of favor. The next day, on 9 October, Rasputin responded and sent a short telegram, including the prophecy: “The little one will not die. Do not allow the doctors [c.q. Eugene Botkin and Vladimir Derevenko] to bother him too much.” His temperature dropped and the hematoma disappeared, but it took a year before he recovered.
Court physician Botkin believed that Rasputin was a charlatan and his apparent healing powers arose from his use of hypnosis, but Rasputin was not interested in this practice before 1913 and his teacher Gerasim Papandato was expelled from St. Petersburg. Felix Yusupov, one of Rasputin’s enemies suggested that he secretly drugged Alexis with Tibetan herbs which he got from the quack doctor Peter Badmayev, but his drugs were politely rejected by the court. For Maria Rasputin, it was magnetism. For Greg King, these explanations fail to take into account those times when Rasputin healed the boy, despite being 2600 km (1650 miles) away. For Fuhrmann, these ideas on hypnosis and drugs flourished because the Imperial Family lived such isolated lives. (They lived almost as much apart from Russian society as if they were settlers in Canada.) For Moynahan, “There is no evidence that Rasputin ever summoned up spirits, or felt the need to; he won his admirers through force of personality, not by tricks.”
Even before Rasputin’s arrival, the upper class of St Petersburg had been widely influenced by mysticism. Individual aristocrats were reportedly obsessed with anything occult. Alexandra had been meeting a succession of Russian “holy fools,” hoping to find an intercessory with God. Papus had visited Russia three times, in 1901, 1905, and 1906, serving the Tsar and Tsarina both as physician and occult consultant. After Papus returned to France, Rasputin came into the picture.
In those days Imperial Russia was confronted with a religious renaissance, a widespread interest in spiritual-ethical literature and non-conformist moral-spiritual movements, an upsurge in pilgrimage and other devotions to sacred spaces and objects. The “God-Seeking” were shaping their own ritual and spiritual lives (sometimes in the absence of clergy).
In his religious views Rasputin was close to the so-called Khlysts, an obscure Christian sect with strong Siberian roots. In September 1907 the “Spiritual Consistory” of Tobolsk accused Rasputin of spreading false doctrines, kissing and bathing with women. During the enquiry Rasputin disappeared it seems and “the effort of local priests to discipline their most troublesome parishioner failed.” According to Oleg Platonov: “The case was fabricated so clumsily that it ‘works’ only against its own authors. No wonder the documents were never published. Nothing but allusions were made to its existence.” In 1908 Theofan traveled to Siberia and examined all the documents from the Tobolsk inquiry, but failed to find anything of interest.
While fascinated by Rasputin in the beginning, the ruling class of St Petersburg began to turn against him as he had privileges no one else had, an easy access to the Imperial Family. In 1909, within four months, Rasputin had visited the Romanovs six times. The press started a campaign against Rasputin, claiming he paid too much attention to young girls and women. Theofan lost his interest and Stolypin wanted to ban him from the capital. When Rasputin arrived in St Petersburg, he returned within three weeks to his home village, according to Spiridovich. Early 1911 the Tsar instructed Rasputin to join a group of pilgrims. From Odessa they sailed to Constantinople, Smyrna, Ephesus, Patmos, Rhodes, Cyprus, Beirut, Tripoli, and Jaffa. Around Lent 1911 Rasputin paid a visit to Jerusalem and the Holy Land. On his way back he visited Iliodor who gathered huge crowds in Tsaritsyn.
In early 1912, Hermogen, who told Rasputin to stay away from the palace, repeated the rumours that Rasputin had joined the Khlysty. Iliodor, hinting that Rasputin was Alexandra’s paramour, showed Makarov a satchel of letters, one written by the Tsarina and four by her daughters. The given  or stolen letters were handed to the Tsar. Rodzianko requested Rasputin to leave the capital. When Vladimir Kokovtsov became prime minister he asked the Tsar permission to authorize Rasputin’s exile to Tobolsk, but Nicholas refused. “I know Rasputin too well to believe all the tittle-tattle about him.” Kokovtsov offered Rasputin 200,000 rubles, equaling $100,000, when he would leave the capital. Rasputin had become one of the most hated people in Russia.
After the Spała accident, where the careless Tsesarevich climbed into a boat and fell, Rasputin regained influence at court and also in church affairs when a new bishop was appointed in Tobolsk. His position as an intermediary had been dramatically validated, but the Holy Synod frequently attacked Rasputin, accusing him of a variety of immoral or evil practices. Rasputin was variously accused of being a heretic, an erotomaniac or a pseudo-khlyst. On 21 February 1913 Rodzianko ejected Rasputin from the Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan shortly before the celebration of 300 years of Romanov rule in Russia. He had established himself in front of the seats which Rodzianko, after great difficulty, had secured for the Duma.
Rasputin’s behaviour was discussed in the Fourth Duma, and in March 1913 the Octobrists, led by Alexander Guchkov commissioned an investigation, but “anyone bold enough to criticize Rasputin found only condemnation from the Tsarina.” Worried with the threat of a scandal, the Tsar asked Rasputin to leave for Siberia. Nicholas had accepted investigations on Rasputin, but the new bishop in Tobolsk, dismissed the case. The investigations were stopped. and Nicholas decided to criticize the politicians. He and his wife referred to Grigori as our “Friend” and a “holy man”, emblematic of the trust that the family had placed in him. The Tsar dismissed Kokovtsov on 29 January 1914. He was replaced by the absent minded Ivan Goremykin, and Pyotr Bark.
According to Pavel Milyukov, in May 1914 Rasputin had become an influential factor in Russian politics. On 27 June 1914 Rasputin arrived from the capital in Pokrovskoye. Around 3:00 pm of Sunday 12 July [O.S. 29 June] 1914, Rasputin went out from the house in reply to a telegram he had received. Returning to his house he was suddenly attacked by one Khionia Guseva. This woman, who had her face concealed with a black kerchief, approached him and pulled out a dagger. She stabbed Rasputin in the stomach, just above the navel. Rasputin asserted that he ran down the street with his hands on his belly. Guseva claimed that she chased him, but Rasputin grabbed a stick from the ground and hit her. Covered with blood, Rasputin was brought into his house. Just before midnight a doctor arrived from the neighboring village and operated on him by candlelight.
Rasputin was transported by boat on Thursday to Tyumen, accompanied by his wife and daughter. The Tsar sent his own physician and after a laparotomy and more than six weeks in the hospital, where he had to walk around in a gown, unable to wear ordinary clothes, Rasputin recovered. On 17 August 1914 he left the hospital; mid September he was back in Petrograd. His daughter Maria records that Rasputin believed that Iliodor and Vladimir Dzhunkovsky had organized the attack, and that he was never the same man afterwards. According to her, he started to drink (Georgian or Crimean) dessert wines. 
After the attack, Iliodor, dressed as a woman, fled with the help of Maxim Gorki all the way around the Gulf of Bothnia to Oslo.[note 5] Guseva, a fanatically religious woman, had been his adherent in earlier years “denied Iliodor’s participation, declaring that she attempted to kill Rasputin because he was spreading temptation among the innocent.” On 12 October 1914 the investigator declared that Iliodor was guilty of inciting the murder, but the local procurator decided to suspend any action against him for undisclosed reasons, Guseva was locked in a madhouse in Tomsk and a trial was avoided.
Most of Rasputin’s enemies had by now disappeared. Stolypin was dead, Count Kokovtsov had fallen from power, Theofan was exiled, Hermogen [illegally] banished and Iliodor in hiding.
Yar restaurant incident
On 25 March 1915 (O.S.) Rasputin left for Moscow by train, accompanied by his guards. On the next evening he is said, while inebriated, to have opened his trousers and waved his “reproductive organ” in front of a group of female gypsy singers in the Yar restaurant. What happened is not exactly clear as the original police report is missing. Nelipa argues that this story was fabricated by Vladimir Dzhunkovsky in order to discredit Rasputin. According to his daughter Maria he was petrified of going to unknown places after the attack by Guseva. For Nelipa, Rasputin partying with a 78-year-old rich woman with whom he stayed, only leaving her house to attend a church, is not very credible. Besides, he seems to have been accompanied by two journalists, people he usually did not trust. An unreliable report was presented in June; the police did not interview any singer or witness in the restaurant. A waiter assessed the story as bunkum. Dzhunkovsky and Stepan Beletsky verified later that Rasputin never visited the Yar restaurant.
World War I
Shortly before the outbreak of World War I, Rasputin spoke out against Russia going to war with Germany. He begged the Tsar to do everything in his power to avoid war. From the hospital Rasputin sent quite a few telegrams to the court, expressing his fears for the future of the country. “If Russia goes to war, it will be the end of the monarchy, of the Romanovs and of Russian institutions.” During the July Crisis the Tsar ordered first general and then partial mobilization to support the Kingdom of Serbia. He expected Germany would never attack Russia, France and England combined.[note 6] [note 7]
Tsar Nicholas took supreme command of the Russian armies on 23 August 1915 (O.S.), hoping this would lift morale. He was undoubtedly led to this fateful decision by the insistence of the Tsarina and of Rasputin who, according to Maklakov, seem to have been the only ones who supported the Tsar in his decision. “Having one man in charge of the situation would consolidate all decision making.” However, there proved to be dire consequences for himself as well as for Russia. It seems all the Romanov’s despised his decision; Duchess Vladimir wasn’t the only one who feared the Empress would “be the sole ruler of Russia”. All the ministers, even Ivan Goremykin, realized that the change would put Alexandra and Rasputin in charge and threatened to resign. The Progressive bloc demanded the forming of a “government of confidence”, but the Tsar rejected these proposals. The Imperial Duma was sent into recess on 3 September and would not gather again until 9 February 1916. Vasily Maklakov published his famous article, describing Russia as a vehicle with no brakes, driven along a narrow mountain path by a “mad chauffeur”.
On 19 August 1915, after an unsuccessful attempt to discredit Rasputin and the Tsarina in a newspaper, Prince Vladimir Orlov and Vladimir Dzhunkovsky were discharged from their posts. The Tsar then pronounced the relationship between Rasputin and his wife to be a private one, closed to debate.
On the eve of the war the government and the Duma were hovering round one another like indecisive wrestlers, neither side able to make a definite move. The Great Retreat made the political parties more cooperative and practically formed into one party. On 24 August the Progressive Bloc, a combination of Octobrists, Kadets, and Nationalists, was formed.
While seldom meeting with Alexandra personally after the debate in the Duma, Rasputin had become her personal adviser through daily telephone calls or weekly meetings with Vyrubova. This was especially the case after August 1915 when the Emperor left Petrograd for Stavka at the front, leaving his wife Alexandra Feodorovna to act in his place. Rasputin’s personal influence over the Tsarina had become so great that it was he who ordered the destinies of Imperial Russia, while she compelled her weak husband to fulfill them. According to Fuhrmann a symbiotic relationship developed between the Tsarina and Rasputin, in which “each fed from the other”. According to Pierre Gilliard “her desires were interpreted by Rasputin, they seemed in her eyes to have the sanction and authority of a revelation.”
"The Tsar had resisted the influence of Rasputin for a long time. At the beginning he had tolerated him because he dare not weaken the Tsarina's faith in him – a faith which kept her alive. He did not like to send him away for, if Alexei Nicolaievich had died, in the eyes of the mother he would have been the murderer of his own son."
In late 1915 Alexandra and Rasputin advised the Tsar in military strategies around Riga where the Germans were stopped. It seems the two also dominated the Holy Synod. Rasputin was invited to see Alexei when the 11-year-old boy had another serious bleeding.
At the beginning of 1916, not Alexei Khvostov, but Boris Stürmer, a flatterer, was appointed as Prime Minister. He was not opposed to the convening of the Duma, as Goremykin had been, and he would launch a more liberal and conciliatory politic. The Duma gathered on 9 February, but the deputies were disappointed when Stürmer made his speech. For the first time in his life, the Tsar made a visit to the Taurida Palace, which made it practically impossible to hiss at the new prime minister.
Alexei Khvostov and Iliodor or Beletsky concocted a plan to kill Rasputin. Khvostov repeated the rumour suggesting that Alexandra and Rasputin were German agents or spies. Evidence that Rasputin actually worked for the Germans is flimsy at best. According to Kerensky people around Rasputin were interested in strategic information. Rasputin himself never cared much about money and gave it away as soon he had received it. He had built up a reputation of being at once a generous and a disinterested man. Besides alms Rasputin spent large sums in restaurants, cafes, music halls and in the streets…
On 14 September (O.S.) Alexander Protopopov had been invited or appointed as his successor. Protopopov, an industrialist and landowner, raised the question of transferring the food supply from the Ministry of Agriculture to the Ministry of the Interior. (It seems it was Rasputin’s idea to give Protopopov responsibility of organizing food supplies.) A majority of the zemstvo leaders announced that they would not work with his ministry. His food plan was universally condemned.
On 24 October (O.S) the Kingdom of Poland was established by its occupiers Germany and Austria. On 26 October Sukhumlinov was released from prison on instigation of Alexandra, Rasputin and Protopopov. According to Figes the public was outraged and the opposition parties decided to attack Stürmer, his government and the “Dark forces”. A strongly prevailing opinion that Rasputin was the actual ruler of the country was of great psychological importance.
On 19 November (O.S.) the popular Vladimir Purishkevich held a two-hour speech in the Duma, accusing the government of “Germanophilism” and stifling “public initiative.” The trouble was that the different ministries did not cooperate. The government was the problem. The monarchy – because of what he called the “ministerial leapfrog” – had become “fully descredited”.
"The Tsar's ministers who have been turned into marionettes, marionettes whose threads have been taken firmly in hand by Rasputin and the Empress Alexandra Fyodorovna—the evil genius of Russia and the Tsarina ... who has remained a German on the Russian throne and alien to the country and its people."
Prince Felix Yusupov was impressed by the remarkable speech. He visited Purishkevich, who quickly agreed to participate in the murder of Rasputin. Yusupov approached the lawyer Vasily Maklakov, who agreed to advise Felix. Also Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich received Yusupov’s suggestion with alacrity, and his alliance was welcomed as indicating that the murder would not be a demonstration against the [Romanov] dynasty. Then Yusupov approached Sergei Mikhailovich Sukhotin (1887-1926) who served the Guards Rifle Brigade, Life Guards Infantry, but recuperating from injuries in Hotel Astoria.
The Progressive Bloc demanded a responsible government. According to Figes there was practically no one … who did not see the need for a fundamental change in the structure of the government. Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich of Russia, Dmitri’s father, tried to persuade the Tsar, to change his policy and accept a new constitution in order to save the monarchy.[note 8] [note 9]
Alexander Guchkov, who had come to the painful conclusion the situation could only improve when the Tsar was sent away, reported that five members of the Progressive Bloc, including Kerensky, Konovalov, Nekrasov and Tereschenko would consider a coup d’etat, but did not undertake any action. Grand Duke Nikolai refused, saying that the army would not support a coup. “Prince Lvov and General Alekseev made up their minds that the Tsarina’s hold on the Tsar must be broken in order to end the pressure being exerted on him, through her, by the Rasputin clique.” Alexandra suggested to her husband to expel Guchkov and Prince Lvov to Siberia. In December 1916 Felix Yusupov became extremely worried about the tsarina as regent; the Duma would lose and Rasputin would gain influence. A separate peace between Russia and Germany could become reality, a few months before the USA, preparing itself, stepped into World War I.
Trepov and Protopopov
On 17 November (O.S.) Nikolai Pokrovsky was appointed minister of foreign affairs. On 31 November Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg tried to initiate a peace-making process and to end the war on base of his Septemberprogramm (1914). The ‘peace offensive’ was bound to fail; the terms too vague to be taken seriously. On 2 December (O.S.) Pokrovsky said that Russia would never sign a peace treaty with the Central Powers, which caused a storm of applause in the Duma. At the end of the year, the Russians began sending numerous reinforcements to Moldavia to prevent an invasion of southern Russia.
Rasputin apparently feared that he would die before the end of the year. His death might be expected at any time. It seems he accepted his destiny. On 13 December Rasputin warned against the influence of Trepov. It seems he hardly left his house. It is not likely he burned his correspondence and moved money to his daughters from his bank account. His most frequent guest, Aron Simanovich, his secretary published a strangely prophetic letter “The Spirit of Gregory Efimovich Rasputin of the village of Pokrovskoe”, intended for the Tsar. According to Edvard Radzinsky the prophecy is not by Rasputin.
On Friday afternoon, 16 December, Rasputin returned from the “banya” at 3 p.m. About seven individuals visited his apartment onwards. Around 8 p.m. he told Anna Vyrubova, who presented him a small icon, signed and dated at the back by the Tsarina and her daughters, of a proposed midnight visit to Yusupov in his palace. Protopopov, a late visitor who only stayed ten minutes, seems to have begged him not to go out that night.
Nelipa thinks what happened next was intentionally timed; both Grand Duke Dmitry and Purishkevich, assisting at the front, had arrived in the city. Rasputin was murdered on the night after the Duma went into recess. “The forthcoming recess would eliminate the otherwise predictable uproar from any of the delegates at the Tauride Palace, had the murder been arranged a few days earlier.”
Yusupov, who had visited Rasputin in the past few months for treatment, invited Rasputin to the Yusupov palace, intimating his wife, Princess Irina, would be back from Koreiz and Rasputin could meet her after a housewarming party. (Yusupov later denied his wife was involved.) Around midnight, on Friday 16/Saturday 17 December, Yusupov went with Dr. Stanislaus de Lazovert to Rasputin’s apartment. Yusupov didn’t use the regular stairs at this unseemly hour, but a stairwell in the courtyard. Around one o’clock in the morning they drove to the recently refurbished palace, where a sound-proof room, part of the wine cellar, had been specially prepared for the crime. According to Purishkevich they had placed four bottles, containing different kind of sweet wines in a window. Waiting in his drawing room on another floor were the fellow conspirators: Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich, Purishkevich, his assistant Lazovert and Sukhotin, a friend of Felix’ mother. (Albert Stopford came up with two of Felix’ brothers-in-law: Prince Feodor and Prince Nikita). It seems some women were invited but Yusupov did not mention their names. (Radzinsky suggested Dimitri’s stepsister Marianne Pistohlkors and film star Vera Karalli.)
According to Yusupov in his memoirs he offered tea to Rasputin and petit fours laced with a large amount of cyanide. Maurice Paléologue, who in later years rewrote his memoirs, seems to know they discussed spirituality and occultism; Albert Stopford writes politics was the issue. Purishkevich, a teetotaler, mentions he could hear bottles were opened and it is highly likely Yusupov offered Rasputin top wines from the Crimea, from his own vineyard, and perhaps a cherry brandy.[note 10] After an hour or so Rasputin was fairly drunk. Yusupov went upstairs and came back with Dmitri’s revolver. Rasputin was shot at close quarters by Felix sitting left of him. The bullet entered the chest penetrated the stomach and the liver; it left the body on the right side. Then Rasputin fell onto a white bearskin.
However, Yusupov did not succeed in killing Rasputin. After a while “Rasputin opened his eyes and became aware of his predicament.” He struggled up the stairs to reach the first landing, opening an unlocked door to the courtyard, which had been—not long before—used by Yusupov’s conspirators. Alarmed by the noise Purishkevich went down and fired at Rasputin four times (from an unknown distance) while missing three times (according to Nelipa). The bullet penetrated the right kidney and lodged into the spine. Rasputin never reached the gate, but fell into the snow, just outside the door. Then the body was carried back inside. A nervous Yusupov severely hit his victim in his right eye with his shoe.
Both shots were fatal; he would have died within 10–20 minutes, but when the body made a sudden movement, one of them placed his revolver on the forehead and pulled the trigger.[note 11]
Two city policemen on duty heard a ‘rapid fire’ of gunshot sequence; besides they had seen cars coming and leaving. They discussed the issue on the Pochtamtsky Bridge. One of them questioned Yusupov’s butler for details, but was sent away. Twenty minutes later he was re-invited to the palace. Purishkevich boasted he had shot Rasputin, and asked the policeman, aware of his mistake, to keep it quiet for the sake of the Tsar. However, this policeman told his superiors everything he had heard and seen.
The conspirators had planned to burn Rasputin’s possessions; Sukhotin put on Rasputin’s fur coat, his rubber boots, and gloves. He left together with Dmitri Pavlovich and Dr. Lazovert in Purishkevich’s car, to imply that Rasputin had left the palace alive. Because Purishkevich’s wife refused to burn the fur coat and the boots in her small fireplace in Purishkevich’s ambulance train, the conspirators went back to the palace with these large items.
When the body was wrapped in a broadcloth, Dimitri and his fellow conspirators drove in the direction of Krestovsky island and threw the corpse from the car over the railing into an ice-hole in the Malaya Nevka River. They drove back, without noticing that one of Rasputin’s galoshes, a rubber boot (size 10), was stuck between the pylons of the bridge. Unfortunately for the plotters his coat “formed an air bell” and the corpse drifted into an ice mass; it prevented the body’s disposal into the sea.
The next morning, at 8 a.m. the police came to Rasputin’s apartment, and asked his daughters where their father was. At eleven he still had not shown up. Then Rasputin’s disappearance was reported by Maria to Vyrubova. When Vyrubova spoke of it to the Empress, Alexandra pointed out that Princess Irina was absent from Petrograd. When Protopopov mentioned the story reported by the policemen at the Moika, they began to believe that Rasputin had been lured into an ambush. On the Empress’ orders, a police investigation commenced and traces of blood were discovered on the steps to the backdoor of the Yusupov Palace. Prince Felix disposed the blood with a story that by accident one of his dogs was shot by Grand Duke Dmitri. They both tried to gain access to the empress on Sunday. The Tsarina refused to meet the two, but said they could explain to her what had happened in a letter. Purishkevich assisted them writing and left the city at ten in the evening, heading to the front. The next day Prince Yusupov and Grand Duke Dmitri were placed under house arrest in the Sergei Palace when an Uhlenhuth test showed the blood was of human origin. Felix refused to tell the police where the body was.
In the afternoon, traces of blood were detected on the parapet of the Bolshoy Petrovsky bridge and one of Rasputin’s boots was found under the bridge. In the middle of night Maria and her sister affirmed it belonged to their father. It was late, but the police knew where to investigate. On Monday morning, 19 December (O.S.), Rasputin’s beaver-fur coat and the body were discovered close to the river bank, 140 meters west of the bridge. The police and government officials arrived within 15 minutes. In the late afternoon it was decided the frozen corpse had to be taken to the desolate Chesmensky Almshouse. On the next day Makarov was fired, hindering a police investigation. In the evening an autopsy on the thawed corpse by Kosorotov, a forensic expert, in a poorly lit mortuary room established that the cause of his instant death was the third bullet in his frontal lobe, according to Nelipa with strong evidence there was an exit wound at the back of the head. (His official report is still missing.) The first and third shots were made at close range, but had exited his body. The second bullet was extracted. There was alcohol in his body, but no water found in his lungs and no cyanide in his stomach. (Maria Rasputin asserts that, after the attack by Guseva, her father suffered from hyperacidity and avoided anything with sugar. She and her father’s former secretary, Simanovich, doubted he was poisoned at all.) There were a number of injuries, most of them supposedly caused after his death. His right eye was struck by a blunt object, e.g. a boot, his right cheek was shattered when the body was thrown from the bridge.
On 21 December Rasputin’s body was taken in a zinc coffin from the Chesme Church to be buried in a corner on the property of Vyrubova  and adjacent to the palace. The burial at 8.45 in the morning was attended by the Imperial couple with their daughters, Vyrubova, her maid, and a few of Rasputin’s friends, such as Lili Dehn, Protopopov and Colonel Loman. It is not clear whether Rasputin’s two daughters were present, although Maria Rasputin claimed she was there. Later that day Irina’s father Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich wrote the Tsar to close the case. After a week and without an interrogation or a trial the Tsar sent Grand Duke Dmitry Pavlovich, and Yusupov into exile. He ensured that Rasputin’s murder would never become a matter for the court to judge. On Saturday 24 December Dmitri left at two in the morning for Qazvin in Persia, Felix for Rakitnoye, his estate near Belgorod; the police were ordered to stop their inquest.
Towards the February Revolution
"In the seventeen months of the `Tsarina's rule', from September 1915 to February 1917, Russia had four Prime Ministers, five Ministers of the Interior, three Foreign Ministers, three War Ministers, two Ministers of Transport and four Ministers of Agriculture. This "ministerial leapfrog", as it came to be known, not only removed competent men from power, but also disorganized the work of government since no one remained long enough in office to master their responsibilities."
More and more people came to the conclusion that the problem was not Rasputin but the weak-willed Emperor, who had secluded himself in Tsarskoye Selo, unable to react on what happened. The struggle between the Tsar and the Duma became more bitter than ever. (As a result the meeting of the Duma was postponed.)
"On the Russian front," Paléologue wrote, "time is not working for us now. The public does not care about the war. All the government departments and the machinery of administration are getting hopelessly and progressively out of gear. The best minds are convinced that Russia is walking straight into the abyss. We must make haste."
After the February Revolution, the monarchy was deserted by all the élites of the old society, the landowners, the army officers, the industrialists, and politicians of the Duma. On 2 March 1917 (O.S.) Nikolai Ruzsky, Vasily Shulgin and Guchkov came to the train station at Pskov to persuade the Tsar, accompanied by Vladimir Freedericksz and Grand Duke Nicholas, to resign. On 4 March the investigation on Rasputin was stopped by Kerensky and he extended an amnesty to the three main conspirators. On 6 March David Lloyd George gave a cautious welcome to the suggestion of the Russian Foreign Minister Pavel Milyukov that the toppled Tsar and his family be given sanctuary in Britain (although Lloyd George would have preferred that they go to a neutral country). On the 8th all the movements of the imperial family were restricted as the grave of Rasputin had become a place of worship for the Tsarina and her daughters. Rasputin secret grave site was found under a pile of rocks in the woods. The coffin was transported to the town hall, where a curious crowd gathered, and secured under guard over night. According to Moynahan:
"Rasputin’s face was found to have turned black, and an icon was found on his chest. It bore the signatures of Vyrubova, Alexandra, and her four daughters. The body was put into a packing case that once held a piano and was driven in secret to the imperial stables in Petrograd. The next day it was loaded onto a truck and taken out of Petrograd on the Lesnoe Road."
Authors do not agree what happened on the night of 10/11 March after the truck drove on its way north in the direction of Piskarevka in the Vyborgsky District. According to some authours the truck broke down or the snow forced them to stop and the corpse was burned in a field. It is more likely the corpse was incinerated (between 3 and 7 in the morning) in the cauldrons of in the nearby boiler shop of the Saint Petersburg State Polytechnical University, including the coffin, without leaving a single trace. Anything that had to do with Rasputin disappeared permanently.
The official police report, with details gathered in two days, and stopped with the idea the murder was solved, is unconvincing. What is left are the memoirs of the murderers, the 29-year-old Felix Yusupov and 47-year-old Vladimir Purishkevich. The theatrical details on the murder given by Felix Yusupov have never stood up to scrutiny. He changed his account several times; the statement given to the Petrograd police, the accounts given whilst in exile in the Crimea in 1917, his 1927 book, and finally the accounts given under oath to libel juries in 1934 and 1965 all differ to some extent.
"When asked [in 1965] by his attorney as to his motive killing Rasputin, he announced that he was motivated by his "distaste for Rasputin's debaucheries". This represented a major shift from his argument since 1917 that emphasized that he was motivated solely by patriotism for Russia."
Yusupov’s role in the murder has been called into question being consumed by the thought that “not a single important event at the front was decided [during the war] without a preliminary conference” between Alexandra and Rasputin.
Concerning the details of the murder, not even the murderers could give consistent accounts. Differing opinions ranged from the colour of shirt he wore whose weapon or car was used or even where he was finally wounded. Purishkevich said he fired at Rasputin from behind at a distance of twenty paces and hit Rasputin in the back of the head. However, there is no photo of the rear of Rasputin’s head.
Neither Purishkevich nor Yusupov mention the close quarter shot to the forehead. The caliber of the weapon that was used cannot be measured. Nelipa thinks it is not very likely a Webley .455 inch and an unjacketed bullet was used, because its impact would have been different. “The hypothesis that the gunshot to the head was caused by an unjacketed bullet (of British origin) is not supported by the forensic findings or police forensic photographs.”
According to the 1916 autopsy report by Dmitri Kosorotov one bullet had passed through the body, so it was impossible to tell how many people were shooting and to determine whether only one kind of revolver was used. “Kosorotov never stated that different caliber weapons were responsible.”
Rasputin was more multifaceted and more significant than the myths that grew up around him:
- Rasputin was neither a monk nor a saint; he never belonged to any order or religious sect, but he impressed many people with his knowledge and ability to explain the Bible in an uncomplicated way.
- It was widely believed that Rasputin had a gift for curing bodily ailments. “In the mind of the Tsarina, Rasputin was closely associated with the health of her son, and the welfare of the monarchy” and eager to see him as a holy fool, but his enemies saw him as a debauched religious charlatan and a lecher.
- Brian Moynahan describes him as “a complex figure, intelligent, ambitious, idle, generous to a fault, spiritual, and – utterly – amoral.” He was an unusual mix, a muzhik, prophet and [at the end of his life] a party-goer.
- “At first sight Rasputin looks like a symbol of decadence and obscurantism, of the complete corruption of the imperial court in which he was able to float to the top. And so he has usually been treated in the history books. The temptation to wallow in the rhetoric of the lower depths in describing him is almost irresistible. And yet the truth is somewhat simpler: Rasputin was only able to play the part he did because of the dispersal of authority which very much deepened after Stolypin‘s death, and because of the bewildered and unhappy isolation in which the royal couple found themselves.”
- Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was assassinated on Sunday 28 June 1914 (New Style); two weeks later Rasputin was attacked in his home village on 29 June 1914 (Old Style), so it is not “… one of the great coincidences of history…”.
- “To the nobles and Nicholas’s family members, Rasputin was a dual character who could go straight from praying for the royal family to the brothel [bathhouse] down the street.”
- In Summer 1916 Anna Vyrubova, Lili Dehn and Rasputin went to Tobolsk, Verkhoturye and his home village. Most of the villagers were strongly against Rasputin’s returning to Petrograd. This he refused to do. Even the Tsarina was wondering why Rasputin came back to the capital.
- The conspirators, who did not accept a peasant being so close to the Imperial couple, had hoped that Rasputin’s removal would cause the Tsarina to retreat from political activities. They also believed that Rasputin was an agent of Germany, but he was more of a pacifist, and opposed to all wars.
- The date of Rasputin’s death is sometimes recorded as being 16 December 1916 (Old Style) or 13 days later on 29 December 1916 using New Style,[note 12] but the murderers left after midnight for Rasputin’s apartment, when his guards were gone. The initial attempts to kill Rasputin began on the 17th and it is supposed he died within two hours between 3:00 and 4:00 am.
- The “drowning story” became a fixed part of the legend. Rasputin was already dead when thrown into the water. “There is no evidence that Rasputin swallowed water after being pushed into the Neva or that he had freed his arm to make the sign of the cross.”
- The Russian poet Alexander Blok was drafted and brought in by the Extraordinary Commission to transcribe the Thirteenth Section’s interrogations of those who knew Grigori Rasputin. In 1919 the report, nearly 500 pages long, vanished.
- In Russia, Rasputin is seen by many ordinary people and clerics, among them the late Elder Nikolay Guryanov, as a righteous man. However, Alexy II of Moscow said that any attempt to make a saint of Rasputin would be “madness”. In 2004 any picture of Rasputin in a Russian-Orthodox church had to be removed.
- According to Dominic Lieven “more rubbish has been written on Rasputin than on any other figure in Russian history”.
- In 1920 Maria Rasputin and her husband Boris Soloviev fled to Vladivostok and they settled in France. In 1935 she moved to the United States, where she worked as a tiger-trainer in the Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus. In her three memoirs – it is hard to find out which one is the most reliable, certainly not the last one – she painted an almost saintly picture of her father, insisting that most of the negative stories were based on slander and the misinterpretation of facts by his enemies.
In popular culture
After his death the memoirs of those who knew Rasputin became a mini-industry. The basement where he died is a tourist attraction. Numerous film and stage productions have been based on his life. He has appeared as a fictionalized version of himself in numerous other media, as well as having several beverages named after him. More than 150 items on Rasputin like bands, comics and other products bear his name.
- In a lost silent film, The Fall of the Romanovs (1917), Iliodor played himself.
- Rasputin and the Empress is a 1932 film about Imperial Russia. The film’s inaccurate portrayal of Prince Felix and Irina Yusupov as Prince Chegodieff and Princess Natasha caused a major lawsuit against MGM.
- Rasputin’s End (1958) is an opera in three acts; (libretto by Stephen Spender, music by Nicolas Nabokov).
- “Rasputin: The Mad Monk” (1966) is a horror film with Christopher Lee as Rasputin.
- In 1975 Elem Klimov finished a film about Rasputin called Agony. The road to screening took him nine years and many rewrites, still the script has most of the myths and legends. The final edit was not released in the USSR until 1985, due to suppressive measures partly because of its orgy scenes and partly because of its relatively nuanced portrait of Tsar Nicholas II.
- The disco single “Rasputin” (1978) by the German-based pop and disco group Boney M references Rasputin’s alleged affair with Alexandra Fyodorovna. The tune is based on the Turkish song “Kâtibim“. This song was later covered by the band Turisas.
- Rasputin was depicted as the vengeful antagonist in the 1997 American animated film Anastasia.
- 2003 Einojuhani Rautavaara composed Rasputin, an opera in three acts
- In 2011 Josée Dayan directed a French-Russian produced a film on Rasputin for television called Raspoutine starring Gérard Depardieu in the role of Rasputin and Vladimir Mashkov as Nicholas II
- Rasputin was the subject of the BBC Radio 4 series Great Lives, first aired on 1 January 2013.
- Rasputin is the subject of a musical theatre production, Ripples to Revolution, by Peter Karrie
- With the aim of casting Leonardo DiCaprio as Rasputin, Warner Brothers have bought the rights to a screenplay by Jason Hall.
- Saint Martyr Grigori Rasputin the website of Oleg Molenko
- The new Russian series “Grigorii R”, directed by Andrey Malyukov, began on Russian TV Monday 27 October 2014; with Vladimir Mashkov as Rasputin and Andrey Smolyakov as the investigator Smitten, etc.
- Colin Wilson said in 1964 that “No figure in modern history has provoked such a mass of sensational and unreliable literature as Grigori Rasputin. More than a hundred books have been written about him, and not a single one can be accepted as a sober presentation of his personality. There is an enormous amount of material on him, and most of it is full of invention or willful inaccuracy. Rasputin’s life, then, is not ‘history’; it is the clash of history with subjectivity.”
- Efim Vilkin Rasputin (24 December 1841 – autumn 1916); Anna Parshukova (1839/40 – 30 January 1906)
- Michael (29 September 1888 – 16 April 1893); Anna (29 January 1892 – 3 May 1896); Grigori (25 May 1894 – 13 September 1894); Dmitri (25 October 1895 – 16 December 1933); Matryona (26 March 1898 – 27 September 1977); Barbara (28 November 1900 – 1925); Paraskeva (11 October 1903 – 20 December 1903)
- For more information see Haemophilia in European royalty.
- The former monk Iliodor had written a book on Rasputin, entitling it “The Holy Devil” (1914). It was an appalling and libelous account alleging amorous ties between Grigori Rasputin and the Empress.
- For more details on Causes of World War I see A.J.P. Taylor and R.J. Evans.
- On 1 September, St Petersburg by ukase changed its name to Petrograd, in order to remove the (German) words ‘Sankt’ and ‘Burg’.
- In the Russian Constitution of 1906 the Tsar retained an absolute veto over legislation, as well as the right to dismiss the Duma at any time, for any reason he found suitable.
- Zinaida Yusupova, Alexandra’s sister Elisabeth, Grand Duchess Victoria, Prince Michael and the Tsar’s mother tried to influence the Emperor or his stubborn wife to remove Rasputin, but without success. For years the Tsar’s niece Duchess Marie was openly hostile to Alexandra.
- The Yusupov family owned a private vinyard in Massandra, near Yalta, where since 1892 sweet or semi-sweet fortified wines as Madeira, Port, Sherry, but also Champagne was produced. His palace in Koreiz had two wine cellars.
- According to Nelipa the third gunshot will never identify Rasputin’s killer in the manner Cook proposed. Nelipa suggests Oswald Rayner was a silent partner.
- This discrepancy arises due to the fact that the Gregorian calendar was not introduced into Soviet Russia until February 1918, see Old Style and New Style dates.
- Искатели. Клад Григория Распутина – документальный фильм
- Kerensky, p. 182.
- Wilson, pp. 11, 14, 16.
- Nelipa, p. 506.
- Nelipa, p. 147.
- “Radio : The Christian Message from Moscow”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Fuhrmann, p. xiii.
- Joseph T Fuhrmann, Rasputin: The Untold Story; Retrieved 18 January 2015
- Demystifying the life of Grigory Rasputin | Russia Beyond The Headlines. Rbth.ru (27 December 2012). Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Royal Russia News: Demystifying the life of Grigory Rasputin. Russia Beyond the Headlines via Angelfire.com. 27 December 2012.
- Radzinsky (2000), pp. 25, 29.
- Fuhrmann, p. 9.
- Fuhrmann, pp. 11–13.
- Nelipa, p. 16.
- Spiridovich, p. 15.
- Верхотурский Во Имя Святителя Николая Чудотворца Мужской Монастырь. Pravenc.ru. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Fuhrmann, p. 17
- Moynahan, p. 31
- Fuhrmann, p. 22
- Moynahan, p. 32.
- Nelipa, p. 17.
- Spencer C. Tucker; Priscilla Mary Roberts (September 2005). The Encyclopedia of World War I: A Political, Social, and Military History. ABC-CLIO. pp. 967–. ISBN 978-1-85109-420-2.
- “The Life and Tragedy of Alexandra – Chapter XV – A Mother’s Agony – Rasputin”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- The Real Tsaritsa by Madame Lili Dehn. Alexanderpalace.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Amalrik, A. (1988) Biografie van de Russische monnik 1863-1916, p. 15.
- Nelipa, p. 18.
- Amalrik, A. (1988) Biografie van de Russische monnik 1863–1916, p. 45
- Fuhrmann, p. 24
- Moynahan, p. 43.
- Chapter Five. Rasputin. Alexanderpalace. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Iliodor (1918), p. 91. Archive.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- “The Life And Death Of Rasputin”. Orthodoxchristianbooks.com. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
- Radzinsky (2000), p. 57.
- “Nicolas’ diary 1905 (in Russian)”. Rus-sky.com. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
- Fuhrmann, p. 33.
- Fuhrmann, p. 41.
- Fuhrmann, p. 42
- Nelipa, p. 24
- Iliodor, p. 112..
- The Atlantic; “Memories of the Russian Court – an online book on Romanov Russia – Chapter VI”. Alexanderpalace.org. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
- Le Précepteur des Romanov by Daniel GIRARDIN
- H.C. d’Encausse (1996) Nicolas II, La transition interrompue, p. 147, (Fayard) ; Holy People of the World: A Cross-cultural Encyclopedia.
- Diarmuid Jeffreys (2004). Aspirin: The Remarkable Story of a Wonder Drug. Bloomsbury Publishing.
- Aspirin: The Story of a Wonder Drug Review by Boleslav L Lichterman in BMJ (British Medical Journal) 11 Dec 2004; 329(7479): 1408.
- HEROIN® and ASPIRIN® The Connection! & The Collection! – Part II By Cecil Munsey
- Vyrubova, p. 94
- Moe, p. 156.
- Fuhrmann, pp. 100–101.
- Pares, p. 138.
- Fuhrmann, p. 103.
- Moe, p. 152.
- Rasputin, p. 33.
- Bernard Pares (6 January 1927) Rasputin and the Empress: Authors of the Russian Collapse. Foreign Affairs. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Moynahan, p. 165.
- “Grigory Rasputin – Russiapedia History and mythology Prominent Russians”. Russiapedia.rt.com. Retrieved 2 September 2012.
- Moe, p. 21.
- Rob Moshein. Eyewitness Accounts – How Rasputin Met the Imperial Family. Alexanderpalace.
- “Распутин Григорий Ефимович — Биография”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Nelipa, pp. 31, 35.
- Moe, p. 53-55.
- Nelipa, p. 33.
- “Diaries of Nicholas II – Alexander Palace Time Machine”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- “How Rasputin Met the Imperial Family – Alexander Palace Time Machine”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Moe, p. 167.
- Grigori Efimovich Rasputin. My Ideas and Thoughts. Omolenko.com. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Out of My Past, p. 299
- Iliodor, p. 116. Archive.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Rasputin, p. 66.
- Pares, p. 150
- Nelipa, p. 75.
- King, p. 188
- Moynahan, p. 168
- Spiridovich, p. 286
- Fuhrmann, p. 92.
- Rasputin, p. 70.
- Wilson, pp. 139, 147.
- Moynahan, pp. 37, 39.
- Fuhrmann, pp. XXVII, 20, 53–54, 80.
- Moynahan, p. 52.
- Grigori Rasputin predicted the end of the world to come on 23 August 2013. Daniel-irimia.com. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Rasputin, p. 90
- Almasov, pp. 168–172.
- Rasputin, p. 117.
- Vyrubova, p. 388.
- Eyewitness Accounts – Alexis Almost Dies at Spala – 1912. Alexanderpalace. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- King, p. 199.
- Moynahan, p. 154.
- Moe, p. 256.
- “Royal Russia News: The Murder of Grigorii Rasputin: A Book Review by Charlotte Zeepvat”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Iliodor (1918). The Mad Monk of Russia. The Century Co., New York. p. 193.
- Moynahan, pp. 169–170
- Fuhrmann, p. 91.
- King, p. 191.
- Moe, p. 211.
- Pares, pp. 148–149.
- Out of My Past, p. 303
- Out of My Past, p. 418.
- Antrick, p. 37.
- Fuhrmann, pp. 117–118.
- BORODINA G.YU. DOCUMENTS OF THE CASE KHIONIA GUSEVA ATTEMPT ON GRIGORIY RASPUTIN IN 1914. Retrieved on 7 August 2014.
- Colin Wilson (1971) Rasputin and the Fall of the Romanovs, chapter VIII ; Moe, p. 275.
- Rigasche Rundschau. The European Library (1 July 1914). Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Assassination Attempt on Rasputin – 29 June 1914 | The British Newspaper Archive Blog. Blog.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- FAVORITE OF TSAR STABBED BY WOMAN – Rasputin, Peasant Monk-Mystic, Said to be at the Point of Death. New York Times (14 July 1914). Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- “Cymru 1914”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA)
- Fuhrmann, pp. 119-120.
- The Tsar Sends His Own Physician to Attend the Court Favorite. New York Times. 15 July 1914
- Fuhrmann, p. 131.
- Fuhrmann, p. 120.
- Radzinsky (2000), pp. 257–258.
- Mon père Grigory Raspoutine. Mémoires et notes (par Marie Solovieff-Raspoutine) J. Povolozky & Cie. Paris 1923; Matrena Rasputina, Memoirs of The Daughter, Moscow 2001. ISBN 5-8159-0180-6 (Russian)
- Rasputin, p. 12.
- The Massandra Collection
- Rasputin, p. 88.
- Nelipa, pp. 85.
- On this day: Russia in a click. Russiapedia
- Nelipa, p. 48.
- Moe, p. 277.
- Sergei Fomin (2011) Grigory Rasputin: Rassledovanie. Vol. 6. pp. 380–826
- King, p. 192.
- Charles A. Ruud; Sergei Stepanov (1999). Fontanka 16: The Tsars’ Secret Police. McGill-Queen’s Press – MQUP. pp. 297–. ISBN 978-0-7735-2484-2.
- Rasputin, p. 34.
- Nelipa, p. 49.
- Nelipa, p. 52.
- Alexanderpalace Okhrana Surveillance Report on Rasputin – from the Soviet Krasnyi Arkiv
- Thirteen Years at the Russian Court – Chapter Fourteen – Death of Rasputin. Alexanderpalace.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Pares, p. 139.
- Radzinsky (2010), p. 295 
- Figes, pp. 32–33.
- Nelipa, pp. 90–94
- Fuhrmann, pp. 139–141.
- Radzinsky (2010), p. 297 
- Moe, pp. 348–350.
- Antrick, pp. 35, 39.
- Vyrubova, p. 173.
- Thirteen Years at the Russian Court – Chapter Eight – Journeys to the Crimea and Rumania – Poncaire’s Visit – War. Alexanderpalace. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Victor Alexandrov (1966) The End of the Romanovs, trans. William Sutcliffe. Little, Brown, and Company, Boston, p. 155.
- “AJP Taylor railway timetables and mobilisation plans”. YouTube. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Richard J. Evans on ´´The Road to Slaughter´´ by Sean McMeekin in The New Republic
- Nelipa, p. 515.
- Петербургские квартиры Распутина. Petersburg-mystic-history.info. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Antrick, pp. 59–60.
- Nelipa, p. 88.
- Letters from Tsar Nicholas to Tsaritsa Alexandra – AUGUST 1915. Alexanderpalace.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Moe, p. 332.
- King, p. 226.
- Fuhrmann, pp. 148–149
- Moe, pp. 331–332.
- Figes, p. 276.
- Cherniavsky, p. 7.
- Frank Alfred Golder (2008) Documents of Russian History 1914–1917. Read Books. ISBN 1443730297.
- Antrick, p. 79, 117.
- “1917 Interrogation of Count Freedericks – Alexander Palace Time Machine”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Figes, p. 34
- Moynahan, p. 169
- Fuhrmann, p. 129.
- Hosking, p. 205.
- Figes, p. 270, 275.
- Fuhrmann, p. 141.
- King, p. xi.
- Fuhrmann, p. 157.
- Alexanderpalace. Alexanderpalace. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- The tsarina’s letters exerting pressure on the tsar (1915-16)
- Kerensky, p. 160
- Nelipa, p. 63, 163-164
- Vyrubova, pp. 289–290
- Moe, p. 387.
- “The Life and Tragedy of Alexandra – Chapter XXIII – Before the Storm”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Nelipa, p. 162, 505
- King, p. 258
- Pares, p. 400.
- Victor Chernov. THE GREAT RUSSIAN REVOLUTION. chernov.sstu.ru
- Buchanan, p. 77.
- Moe, p. 272
- Maurice Paléologue (1925). Ch. X. “April 1-June 2, 1915” in An Ambassador’s Memoirs. Vol. I. George H. Doran Company, New York.
- Figes, p. 286.
- Gytis Gudaitis (2005) Armeen Rußlands und Deutschlands im 1. Weltkrieg und in den Revolutionen von 1917 und 1918 : ein Vergleich. Thesis. Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt. p. 142 ; Nelipa, p. 132.
- Vladimir I. Gurko (1939) “Features and Figures of the Past”, p. 10. 
- Figes, p. 287.
- Thirteen Years at the Russian Court – Chapter Thirteen – Tsar at the Duma – Galacia – Life at G.Q.H. – Growing Disaffection. Alexanderpalace.org (15 March 1921). Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Pares, p. 392.
- Nelipa, p. 120
- Antrick, p. 119.
- “The Life and Tragedy of Alexandra – Chapter XXIV – Warning Voices”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- The Murder of Grigorii Rasputin; a Conspiracy That Brought Down the Russian Empire. Amazon.com. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Kerensky, p. 150.
- “Governments, Parliaments and Parties (Russian Empire)”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Figes, p. 278.
- Maureen Perrie; Dominic Lieven; Ronald Grigor Suny (2006). The Cambridge History of Russia: Volume 2, Imperial Russia, 1689–1917. Cambridge University Press. pp. 668–. ISBN 978-0-521-81529-1.
- Radzinsky (2000), p. 434.
- Robert Paul Browder; Aleksandr Fyodorovich Kerensky (1961). The Russian Provisional Government, 1917: Documents. Stanford University Press. pp. 17–. ISBN 978-0-8047-0023-8.
- Tatyana Mironova. Grigori Rasputin: Belied Life – Belied Death. Whenthekidstakeoverthekingdom.wordpress.com (17 May 2010). Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Letters of Felix and Zenaida Yussupov – Alexander Palace Time Machine. Alexanderpalace.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Nelipa, pp. 112–115.
- Pares, p. 402.
- “Latest posts of: rudy3”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Nelipa, pp. 130, 134.
- Hasegawa, T. (1981) The February Revolution: Petrograd, 1917. University of Washington Press. ISBN 0295957654. p. 58.
- Robert Paul Browder; Aleksandr Fyodorovich Kerensky (1961). The Russian Provisional Government, 1917: Documents. Stanford University Press. pp. 18–. ISBN 978-0-8047-0023-8.
- Raymond Pearson (1964) The Russian moderates and the crisis of Tsarism 1914–1917, p. 128.
- A. Kerensky, Russia and History’s Turning Point, New York 1965, p. 150.
- Pares, p. 398.
- Nelipa, p. 129, 134.
- Romanian Operations 1916. WarChron. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Moe, p. 473.
- Almanac of World War I. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Hans Fenske (2013) “Der Anfang vom Ende des alten Europa. Die alliierte Verweigerung von Friedensgesprächen 1914-1919. Olzog Verlag, Berlin, p. 41-43.
- The First World War. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- French & German Public Opinion on Declared War Aims: 1914-1918. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- A Peace to End All Peace. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Official Statements of War Aims and Peace Proposals, December 1916 to November 1918 By James Brown Scott. Questia.com. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- The Russian diary of an Englishman, Petrograd, 1915-1917
- Massie, p. 361
- Moe, p. 458.
- Aleksandr Mosolov (1935). At the court of the last tsar: being the memoirs of A. A. Mossolov, head of the court chancellery, 1900–1916. Methuen. pp. 170–173.
- Pares, p. 395
- Radzinsky (2010), p. 597
- van der Meiden, p. 70.
- Buchanan, p. 37
- Pares, p. 403.
- van der Meiden, p. 75.
- Nelipa, p. 98, 207, 222
- Figes, p. 290
- Yusupov, (1929) De dood van Raspoetin, p. 156
- Spiridovich, p. 374
- van der Meiden, p. 74.
- The Spirit of Gregory Efimovich Rasputin-Novykh of the village of Pokrovskoe. Theintermediateperiod.wordpress.com. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Pares, p. 398
- Radzinsky (2010), p. 682
- Nelipa, pp. 99, 223, 399.
- Rasputin, p. 109
- Nelipa, p. 224.
- Nelipa, pp. 133–134.
- Nelipa, p. 122.
- Nelipa, p. 2.
- Nelipa, p. 308.
- E. Radzinsky (2000) The Rasputin File. Doubleday, pp. 476-477
- Maurice Paléologue (1925).Ch. V. “December 25, 1910 – January 8, 1917” in An Ambassador’s Memoirs. Vol. III. George H. Doran Company, New York.
- The Russian diary of an Englishman, Petrograd, 1915-1917
- Massandra winery
- Nelipa, p. 309.
- Nelipa, p. 315.
- Nelipa, p. 382.
- Nelipa, p. 318.
- Nelipa, p. 322.
- Nelipa, p. 320-324.
- To Kill Rasputin, by Andrew Cook. A review by Greg King. Directarticle.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Nelipa, p. 121, 197.
- “Lost Splendor – Felix Yussupov – Chapter XXIII”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- R.C. Moe, p. 484, 509, 524.
- “Full text of “The Russian diary of an Englishman, Petrograd, 1915-1917″”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Almasov, pp. 189, 210–212.
- F. Yusupov (1952) Lost Splendor, Ch. XXIII “The Moika basement – The night of December 29”.
- Spiridovich, p. 383
- A. Simanowitsch (1928) Rasputin. Der allmächtige Bauer. p. 270
- Purishkevich, p. 110
- Radzinsky (2000), p. 458.
- O.A. Platonov Murder. Omolenko.com. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Fuhrmann, p. 211.
- The Great Petrovsky Bridge (Saint Petersburg). Wikimapia. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Nelipa, p. 354-355.
- Rasputin’s Murder. Forum.alexanderpalace.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Nelipa, p. 102, 354, 529.
- “Memories of the Russian Court – an online book on Romanov Russia – Chapter XIII”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Hoare, p. 152.
- Nelipa, p. 529.
- Hoare, p. 154
- Nelipa, p. 529, 534.
- Nelipa, p. 372.
- Nelipa, p. 383.
- Fuhrmann, p. 217
- Nelipa, p. 379; Platonov, O.A. (2001) Prologue regicide.
- Spiridovich, p. 402
- Moynahan, p. 245.
- Fuhrmann, p. 221.
- Rasputin, pp. 12, 71, 111.
- A. Simanotwitsch (1928) Rasputin. Der allmächtige Bauer. p. 37
- Radzinsky (2000), p. 477-478.
- “Rasputin’s Death Reexamined – News”. The Moscow Times. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Nelipa, p. 529, 391.
- Alexanderpalace. Forum.alexanderpalace.org. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Places connected with the murder. Petersburg-mystic-history.info. Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Rasputin, p. 16
- Fuhrmann, p. 222
- The Russian diary of an Englishman, Petrograd, 1915-1917, The Russian diary of an Englishman, Petrograd, 1915-1917, Almasov, p. 214
- Pares, p. 146.
- Nelipa, p. 478.
- Almasov, pp. 193, 213.
- Nelipa, p. 467.
- Maurice Paléologue (1925). Ch. VII. “January 29 – February 21, 1917” in An Ambassador’s Memoirs. Vol. III. George H. Doran Company, New York.
- Alexander Palace
- Nelipa, pp. 424–425, 430, 476.
- Moynahan, pp. 354–355.
- The Russian diary of an Englishman, Petrograd, 1915-1917
- Spiridovich, p. 421.
- Figes, p. 291.
- Radzinsky (2000), p. 493.
- Rasputin G. E. (1869–1916). A.G. Kalmykov in the Saint Petersburg encyclopaedia.
- Nelipa, pp. 454-455, 457-459.
- Moe, p. 627.
- The boiler-building – Images of St Petersburg – National Library of Russia
- Moe, p. 666.
- Fuhrmann, pp. 197, 200.
- Reveals Scandals Of Old Russian Church. Ottawa Citizen. (28 November 1930).
- Nelipa, p. 141-143.
- “To Kill Rasputin: The Life and Death of Grigori Rasputin” by Andrew Cook. Rulit.net.
- Alexanderpalace. Forum.alexanderpalace.org (17 July 1918). Retrieved on 15 July 2014.
- Nelipa, p. 387-388.
- Nelipa, p. 390.
- Nelipa, p. 306.
- Rasputin, p. 23.
- Fuhrmann, p. 28.
- Radzinsky (2010), p. 243.
- Fuhrmann, p. 64.
- Joseph T. Fuhrmann (2012). Rasputin: The Untold Story. John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 978-1-118-22693-3.
- Moynahan, Preface.
- Hosking, pp. 208–209.
- “Stabbing of Rasputin in 1914”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- On this day: Russia in a click. russiapedia.rt.com. But with a wrong date. It should be 12 July 1914.
- Pares, pp. 188, 222.
- Nelipa, pp. 83, 85.
- The Guardian Rasputin killed by Tsar’s nephew?. Theguardian.com. 3 January 2013.
- Moe, p. 569.
- King, p. 275.
- The Thirteenth Section, charged with investigating the “Dark Forces” (all who knew Rasputin are incarcerated and interrogated). 
- Elder Nikolay Guryanov’s testament for Russia (in Russian)
- Andrei Zolotov, Jr. (5 February 2003) Orthodox Church Takes On Rasputin. Moscow Times.
- “Rasputin: Between Virtue & Sin”. YouTube. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Lieven, p. 273.
- Moe, p. 6.
- van der Meiden, p. 84.
- Fuhrmann, p. 236.
- Ronald Bergan. “Obituary: Elem Klimov”. the Guardian. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- “BBC Radio 4 – Great Lives, Series 29, Grigori Rasputin”. Bbc.co.uk. 4 January 2013. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
- “Rasputin, Ripples to Revolution – Home”. Rasputinthemusical.weebly.com. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
- “Leonardo di Caprio set to play Rasputin”. The Guardian. 10 June 2013.
- “RASPUTIN”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- “Григорий Р. (2014) смотреть онлайн бесплатно”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Fuhrmann, p. 11, 24, 29, 47, 58, 90, 204.
- Past, Out of My. Out of My Past: Memoirs of Count Kokovtsov. ISBN 9780804715539. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- “Rasputin”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- “Grigory Rasputin – Russiapedia History and mythology Prominent Russians”. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Almasov, Boris (1924). Rasputin und Russland. Amalthea Verlag, Zürich. OCLC 604661189.
- Antrick, Otto (1938). Rasputin und die politischen Hintergründe seiner Ermordung. E. Hunold, Braunschweig.
- Buchanan, George (1923). My mission to Russia and other diplomatic memories. Cassell and Co., Ltd., London, New York.
- Cook, Andrew (2007) To Kill Rasputin: The Life and Death of Grigori Rasputin. History Press Limited.
- Cullen, Richard (2010) Rasputin: Britain’s Secret Service and the Torture and Murder of Russia’s Mad Monk.
- Figes, Orlando (1996). A People’s Tragedy. The Russian Revolution 1891–1924. Jonathan Cape. ISBN 0-224-04162-2.
- Fomin, Sergei Vladimirovich “Grigorij Rasputin: Rassledovanie”: Volume 1: “Наказание Правдой” (2007); Volume 2. “А кругом широкая Россия…” (2008); Volume 3. “Боже! Храни Своих!” (2009); Volume 4. “Судья же мне Господь!” (2010); Volume 5. “Ложь велика, но правда больше…” (2010); Volume 6. “Страсть как больно, а выживу…” (2011); Volume 7 “Милые, дорогие, не отчаивайтесь” (2013).
- Fomin, Sergei Vladimirovich (2012) Дорогой наш отец. Г.Е. Распутин-Новый глазами его дочери и духовных чад. Автор-составитель Сергей Фомин. М.: Форум.
- Fuhrmann, Joseph T. (2013). Rasputin, the untold story (illustrated ed.). Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. ISBN 978-1-118-17276-6.
- Hoare, Samuel (1930). The Fourth Seal. William Heinemann Limited.
- Hosking, Geoffrey Alan (1973). The Russian constitutional experiment. Government and Duma, 1907–1914. CUP Archive. ISBN 0521200415.
- Kerensky, Alexander (1965). Russia and History’s turning point. Duell, Sloan and Pearce, New York. OCLC 237312.
- King, Greg (1994). The Last Empress. The Life & Times of Alexandra Feodorovna, tsarina of Russia. A Birch Lane Press Book. ISBN 1559722118.
- Lieven, Dominic (1993). Nicholas II: Twilight of the Empire. St. Martin’s Press. ISBN 0312143796.
- Massie, Robert K (2004) [originally in New York: Atheneum Books, 1967]. Nicholas and Alexandra: An Intimate Account of the Last of the Romanovs and the Fall of Imperial Russia (Common Reader Classic Bestseller ed.). United States: Tess Press. ISBN 1-57912-433-X. OCLC 62357914.
- Meiden, G.W. van der (1991). Raspoetin en de val van het Tsarenrijk. De Bataafsche Leeuw. ISBN 9067072788.
- Moe, Ronald C. (2011). Prelude to the Revolution: The Murder of Rasputin. Aventine Press. ISBN 1593307128.
- Moynahan, Brian (1997). Rasputin. The saint who sinned. Random House. ISBN 0306809303.
- Nelipa, Margarita (2010). The Murder of Grigorii Rasputin. A Conspiracy That Brought Down the Russian Empire. Gilbert’s Books. ISBN 978-0-9865310-1-9.
- Out of My Past: Memoirs of Count Kokovtsov. Stanford University Press. ISBN 978-0-8047-1553-9.
- Pares, Bernard (1939). The Fall of the Russian Monarchy. A Study of the Evidence. Jonathan Cape. London.
- Purichkevitch, Vladimir (1923). “Comment j’ai tué Raspoutine”. J. Povolozky & Cie.
- Radzinsky, Edvard (2000). Rasputin: The Last Word. St Leonards, New South Wales, Australia: Allen & Unwin. ISBN 1-86508-529-4. OCLC 155418190. Originally in London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson.
- Radzinsky, Edvard (2010). The Rasputin File. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-307-75466-0.
- Rasputin, Maria (1934). My father.
- Spiridovich, Alexander (1935). Raspoutine (1863–1916). Payot, Paris.
- Vyrubova, Anna (1923). Memories of the Russian Court. 
- Wilson, Collin (1964). Rasputin and the Fall of the Romanovs.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rasputin.|
|Wikisource has the text of a 1922 Encyclopædia Britannica article about Grigori Rasputin.|
- Short and correct biography in Saint Petersburg Encyclopaedia
- Rasputin: Between Virtue & Sin. Short documentary by Russian TV
- Photographs and films about Grigorii Yefimovich Rasputin
- The Alexander Palace Time Machine Bios-Rasputin – bio of Rasputin
- The Murder of Rasputin
- BBC’s Rasputin murder reconstruction
- Grigori Efimovich Rasputin “My Ideas and Thoughts”
- Documentary: Last of the Tsars (II) – The shadow of Rasputin
- Rare pictures on Getty Images