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Lost Splendor: The Amazing Memoirs of the Man Who Killed Rasputin Hardcover – October 1, 2003


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 300 pages
  • Publisher: Turtle Point Press (October 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1885586582
  • ISBN-13: 978-1885586582
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #586,107 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

... brings you deep inside the world of majesty and intrigue at the end of the Romanov dynasty. -- André Leon Talley, Vogue

About the Author

In 1919, the Youssoupoffs left Russia. They sold two Rembrandt paintings (now in the national Gallery in Washington) as well as Princess Irina's jewelry. Contesting their portrayal in an MGM film and a CBS television drama both dealing with Rasputin, they subsequently won large libel settlements in 1934 and 1965.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

53 of 58 people found the following review helpful By John D. Cofield TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 18, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Prince Felix Yousssoupoff is best known as one of the murderers of Gregory Rasputin just before the Russian Revolution. He was a member of one of Russia's most aristocratic families, and in this memoir, originally published in the 1950s, he gives us a glimpse of life for a nobleman in pre-Revolutionary Russia.
Life was certainly rich, if not always good, for Prince Felix. As a younger son, he was given very little education and basically allowed to do as he pleased during his formative years. Most of the time what he was pleased to do was to get into trouble. I lost count of the number of servants, governesses, and other retainers who quit with nervous breakdowns after trying to look after Felix. Under the influence of his elder brother, whom he adored, Felix had an early initiation into sexual and other kinds of debauchery. He enjoyed dressing as a woman and living the high life in St. Petersburg, London, and Paris. Felix was reticent about his sexuality, claiming several affairs with women but speaking more warmly about his men friends, including Grand Duke Dmitri, who helped him murder Rasputin. When Felix's brother was killed in a duel Felix became the heir to a vast fortune. He married Tsar Nicholas' niece Irina, whom he claimed to adore but otherwise said little about.
The most interesting parts of this book deal with Rasputin, whom Felix met several times. Typically, Felix hints that there was a sexual nature to these encounters, but divulges few details. Felix describes the murder and his subsequent exile, which saved him from being in St. Petersburg during the February Revolution in 1917, and his internment in the Crimea with other members of the Imperial Family from 1917 through 1919, when he escaped on a British warship.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By brian komyathy VINE VOICE on April 5, 2006
Format: Hardcover
"I'll have you appointed minister, if you like," Rasputin tells Felix Yusupov as they began to get chummy with one another. But Yusupov, our author herein, had a far different motive for getting close to this "mystic." After all, he was the last remaining son of one of the wealthiest families in Russia (his family's palatial estates, pictured in this book, were downright royal). To boot, he was newly married to Tsar Nicholas II's niece Irina. The tsar was godfather to his first child as well. He didn't want for anything and certainly could have had a position in government had he been interested in one. But what he was interested in was getting close to the ever guarded Rasputin; ever watched over by the secret police, thanks to the tsarina. Rasputin, in Yusupov's words was "an uncultured, cynical, avid and unscrupulous peasant who had reached the pinnacle of power owing to a chain of circumstances." The sole son of the tsar had hemophilia & Rasputin was soon judged (by the Tsarina Alexandra) to be some comfort in alleviating the effects of the tsarevich's condition. Soon, however, Rasputin began to play on his influence with the tsarina (& through Alexandra's infuence with her husband) to engineer the likes of just what he had offered Yusupov---ie., effecting the political appointments of government personel. Then in 1914 war broke out with Germany. About a year after which Rasputin seems to have had an effect, as well, on persuading Alexandra to badger the tsar to take direct control over the war effort. Thus when the tsar did take command of the army (at field headquarters, which was far removed from the capital of St. Petersburg) Rasputin's hand in affairs of the state---including the army, through Alexandra, began to become quite pronounced.Read more ›
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By T. Kunikov VINE VOICE on June 26, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Like another reviewer I had visited the Youssoupoff palace and was amazed by the richness and beauty these people possessed. Unlike some others who might have sided with the revolutionaries for whatever reason Felix of course doesn't, as far as I could tell. I also think he misses the point of why exactly the revolution occurred although presents his side of events which I found fascinating when it came to Rasputin, the nobility, and even the royal family whom he was pretty intimate with.

It was his belief that by getting rid of Rasputin he could start Russia on a highway to reform and reorganization, this in my opinion he was very gullible in believing, but understandable as he was very distant from the population at large.

The reader is taken through Felix's childhood and we get a glimpse of how spoiled he was and how terribly difficult it was to keep him in line and make him understand what responsibility and civility mean, etc. And at the same time we see him sneaking off to find out what the poor live like which in the end changes how he views the world and those around him.

These are just some episodes from his memoirs, there are many others and many of them will make you laugh out loud, children will be children and their experiences of a century ago are very much alike to what goes on in our world today. A worthwhile read, very easy to get into and at times a real page turner, highly recommended for a side of things from the rich/nobility point of view.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ms. Tee on October 23, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Book provided additional insight into the lives of the Russian nobility. Easy to read and very enjoyable.
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