Grigory Efimovich Rasputin served the House of Romanov as an advisor, healer and mystic. Russian nobles, unhappy with the sway that Rasputin had over the Romanov family, murdered Rasputin after several failed attempts on his life in a single evening. The Romanov family is sometimes informally referred to as the House of Holstein-Gottorp-Romanov.

Rasputin and the Romanovs

Born a Russian peasant on January 21, 1869, Rasputin rose to recognition by his ability to explain the bible in simple terms and his reputation for healing the sick and injured. However, Rasputin didn't subscribe to or teach any particular religion and only taught privately. It was in 1907, when Nicholas II, the current tsar of the Romanov family, invited Rasputin to heal his youngest child and only son, Alexei Nikolaevich. The role that Rasputin played as a healer and later advisor to the royal family played a part in isolating the family from the public.

The Murder of Rasputin

The first assassination attempt occurred in 1914 while Rasputin travelled with his father to Pokrovskoye form the capital. Rasputin was stabbed in the stomach by Khionia Guseva. He was treated for injuries that day, but never fully regained his full strength. The night of December 29, 1916, Rasputin was reportedly murdered and died on the 30th after ingesting cyanide, shot several times and dumped in a river. However, many of the details of his death are disputed and an autopsy report by Professor Dmitry Kossorotov documents no active poison in Rasputin's stomach. Many of the eyewitness accounts aren't reliable and the details among conspirators vary too greatly to know the true course of events.

The February Revolution of 1917

After the death of Rasputin, the February Revolution of 1917 resulted in the removal of Nicholas II. The revolution lasted less than a week, but resulted in several significant changes to the Russian monarchy. When his brother, Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich declined the royal throne, a provisional government formed terminating the Romanov dynasty. The entire Romanov family under Nicholas II was later arrested by the Bolsheviks and kept in captivity in Alexander Palace. The Bolsheviks later came to power on March 8th, 1917 by vote.

Romanov Family Execution

The Bolsheviks arranged the execution of Nicholas II, his immediate family and four servants on July 17, 1918. The family and servants were led into a room under the pretense that the people needed to know the family still lived and they needed to take a photograph. After several minutes waiting for the photographer, gunmen walked into the room and shot members of the family. Nicholas' daughters did not die from the gunshot wounds as the bullets bounced off jewels in their corsets. After an attempted stabbing that also failed because of the jewels, the gunmen shot the girls at point blank range in the head.