Monday, May 12, 2008

Rasputin's diary?

The Diary of Grigory Rasputin has just been published in Russia, according to Russia InfoCentre. Rasputin, sometimes dubbed the Mad Monk, rose to great heights in Tsarist Russia, over a hundred years ago. Little is known about his childhood, his life was controversial to say the least, and his murder in 1916 remains the subject of speculation today. According to InfoCentre, it took experts several years to decipher the text of the 102 page diary, and to recognise that it was not actually written by Rasputin himself, but on his behalf. This person, InfoCentre says, ‘tells about [Rasputin’s] calling and healing power, writes tenderly about Mama, the Empress, and scornfully about Papa, the Emperor: “Take his crown off, and you won’t distinguish him amid a dozen of people”.’

For an alternative view of this diary, see Edvard Radzinsky’s book, The Rasputin File published in 2001 by Random House. Radzinsky calls the diary a ‘ crude ideological forgery’.

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