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Сокровища последнего императораFor decades we walk through the world of legends about the treasures of the Russian tsars. Russian gold, long before the revolution nested in foreign banks, excites the minds of the people. They say that access to it is open non mysterious accounts, whether encrypted in toys Imperial children, whether securely hidden in the memory of the possible heirs. Whether these statements truth?

Percentage wore

To determine the true state of Affairs, let's try to make use of as close as possible to the original sources, namely: released in 1933, the memoirs of one of the members of the Royal family of the Great Prince Alexander Mikhailovich. As the closest friends and relatives of the Royal family (he had a cousin uncle and brother-in-law Nicholas II), the Great Prince was very well informed about all the revenues and expenditures of the last Russian Emperor.

So, from what sources received their income Imperial surname? First of all allocations from the state Treasury for the maintenance of the family of the Emperor. The amount was considerable - eleven million rubles a year battered the share of the Royal family. Then - interest on capital invested in English and German banks, and, finally, income from specific lands.

Specific estates acquired by Catherine II, is represented numerous mines and fields, gardens and vineyards, occupying hundreds of thousands of acres of land. Their total value reached one hundred million gold rubles, but the income they bring relatively modest - 2-2,5% a year.

Due to such modesty known sensitivity of the ruling dynasty in matters of diplomacy and domestic politics. For example, Russian champagne "Abrau-Durso", raw material for which was grown on the Royal vineyards, and was never widely advertised, as this could cause complaints from French manufacturers of sparkling wines.

The fruit of the Royal gardens were sold on the spot, on the cheap. This was done for the sake of the Russian left print found no competition to private sudovladeltsyzato and carriers on the part of the Imperial family.

For the same reason the Emperor categorically forbade the Minister of Finance to invest Royal savings in Russian or foreign private enterprises - not more talk that the Tsar was personally interested in any industrial sector.

To all similar questions for the authorities of that time were very sensitive, and therefore the Tsar money was kept, though foreign, but solely state-owned banks.

So, in total the Royal family received annually about twenty million rubles - a huge sum! But to understand, is it much or little actually, it is necessary to estimate the costs.

Palaces tempting vaults...

The lion's share of this money was spent on the content of the Russian domain - palaces, the Palace museums and parks. For example, the Winter Palace was served by a staff of 1,200. Although the king himself recent years have not lived in the Winter, it was necessary, as there was held a solemn receptions and balls for foreign guests. According to etiquette, the ruler of one sixth of the land is simply obliged to accept their guests in the atmosphere of magnificence. In addition, the Palace and then was the Museum where he kept valuable collections, which need protection and care.

The huge costs required contents of the Tsarskoye Selo and Catherine Alexander palaces and adjacent parks. Personnel only Tsarskoye Selo Palace management reached six hundred people. We should not forget about the Peterhof Palace and its famous fountains, Livadia Palace, Crimea, Big Anichkov Palace, home to the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna.

The content of the Kremlin Palace in Moscow cost a pretty penny. Three thousand of Palace servants had to pay monthly salary, to feed, to issue uniforms, and retired to pay pensions. In addition, all Rangers, grooms, waiters, cooks, gardeners, headwaiters, the lady's maid and other service staff twice a year waiting for gifts from the Royal family on Christmas and in the name day of his sovereign. It could be a watch, a ring or gold cigarette case - things for the king budget, but with the amount of several thousand pieces formed a hefty amount.

Then came the Emperor's theatres: three in St. Petersburg and two in Moscow, and all five theatres bear the losses. To support Russian art, the Royal family spent on the maintenance of theatre and ballet troupe two million rubles a year.

Serious financial support required and the Imperial Academy of arts. Officially it was registered on the state account, but since the Imperial family used to own the Trustees, respectively, bore and expenses.

On the little things

In his memoirs, the Great Prince brings a long list of additional expenses, lozhivshemusya on the shoulders of the Emperor. For example: "red cross was going to finish the construction Department of the hospital in a large commercial and industrial centre, but it lacks funds.

Aide-de-camp he lost at cards 25 thousand rubles, he was given 24 hours to pay a loss.

The grandson of one of the honored General turned to the Emperor with the request for extradition 1500 rubles for completion of education.

The policeman in the performance of official duties killed robbers, leaving his family without money..." and much, much more.

Costs directly on the Royal family were as follows: each Grand Prince of these twenty million relied annual rent two hundred thousand roubles. Each of the Grand duchesses were given in marriage, the dowry in the amount of one million rubles. At birth, a member of the Imperial family received a capital of one million rubles. As a result, after the issuance of all pensions, calculation born or married relatives, contractors and employees, support of theatres and other charity, for personal needs the Emperor remained annually about two hundred thousand roubles. Here one would have to add prababushkiny inheritance of four million rubles, which Nicholas II received in his youth, but the money went in three years after his coronation.

How much are the matches?

Fortunately for the Royal children, their money remained intact until the age of majority and have achieved quite impressive sums. But with the last Imperial family affair proved to be very different. According to the "competent" to the order of the Minister of the Imperial court of count BV Fredericks, before the First world war "baby" millions were placed in the Berlin Bank and had lain there until 1923. In 1923 the German bankers were ready to pay the heirs of the Imperial family, issuing them, on request, seven million Royal paper money that was no longer needed, or sixteen paper million German marks. It should be noted that in November 1923 inflation in Germany rose to a record size - the German mark exchange rate dropped to four billion two hundred million marks per one dollar. In other words, the Royal sixteen million would not be enough and boxes of matches.

There was still money invested in the English state Bank is a huge amount of two hundred million gold rubles. But, according to the Great Prince, the money was completely "eaten" by the First world war: "no one expected such a terrible consumption of shells, which were discovered in the first days of the war. Yet abstrusities part was nervous and spent a lot of ammunition in vain. Where would be enough to produce two or three turns of shrapnel to ward off the enemy, were spent aimlessly hundreds of thousands of bullets. Lost rifles, rushed guns. Artillery parks ran too close to the front line and fell into the hands of the enemy". After a couple of months after the outbreak of war in the process of "salvation of Paris" Russian Second army, which consisted of guards regiments, was completely destroyed and had to be replaced.

Everyone knows that war is very flashed the enterprise. And, I think, can't believe the Great Prince Alexander Mikhailovich, who claimed at the end of his narrative, that if the last Russian Emperor had a chance to survive and go, for example, in England, he is to be, had to work as a simple immigrant.

Igor Savelyev
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