Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich Romanov of Russia CDV Photo by Levitsky

Product code: 5288
£145.00
Fine antique CDV photo of Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich of Russia (October 1860 N.S. - 30 January 1919 N.S.) dressed in naval uniform. He was the sixth son and youngest child of Tsar Alexander II of Russia by his first wife Empress Maria Alexandrovna. His birth was commemorated by the naming of the city of Pavlodar in Kazakhstan. He entered the Russian Army and rose to the rank of General, but was known as a gentle person, religious and accessible to people.

On 17 June 1889, in St. Petersburg, he married his first cousin once removed Princess Alexandra of Greece, who bore him two children:

Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna of Russia (1890-1958)
Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich of Russia (1891-1942)

Alexandra's mother was a granddaughter of Tsar Nicholas I and Princess Charlotte of Prussia, and therefore Paul Alexandrovich's first cousin.

Alexandra died just hours after Dmitri's birth. She had carelessly stepped into a waiting boat, causing premature labour; Dmitri was born in the hours following the accident. Alexandra slipped into a coma and did not regain consciousness.

In 1893, the young widower became close to a commoner, Olga Valerianovna Karnovich, and years later requested Nicholas II's permission to marry her, but it was refused, and the couple settled in Paris. On 10 October 1902 they were married in an Orthodox church in Livorno, Italy. The Bavarian government granted Olga the title of Countess of Hohenfelsen in 1904, but the marriage caused a scandal in the Russian Court. Paul was dismissed of his military commissions, all his properties were seized, and his brother Grand Duke Sergei was appointed guardian of Maria and Dmitri.

For many years, he lived in exile in France with Olga and the three children they had: Vladimir, who became a remarkable poet, and two girls, Irina and Natalia. Eventually he was pardoned and settled with his family in Tsarskoe Selo. In 1915 the Tsar granted Olga and their children the title of Prince and Princesses Paley with the style of Serene Highness, and their children also became Prince Vladimir Pavlovich Paley and Princesses Irina Pavlovna and Natalia Pavlovna Paley.

After the Bolsheviks seized power, he and his family faced a terrible ordeal. Their properties were confiscated, they lived under constant harassment, and in March 1918 his son Vladimir Paley was exiled to the Urals, where he was executed on 18 July 1918 in a mineshaft near Alapayevsk.

In August, 1918, he was arrested and taken to prison in St. Petersburg. His health, already bad, declined sharply, and his wife did all she could to have him released. Her efforts were useless: on 29 January 1919, Paul was moved to St. Peter and St. Paul Fortress, and in the first hours of the following day he was shot there, along with his cousins Grand Dukes Dimitry Konstantinovich, Nikolay Mikhailovich and Georgy Mikhailovich.

They were buried in a mass grave in the Fortress, the Bolsheviks having refused the distraught Princess Paley the right to bury her husband. His body and those of his three cousins were found in 2011

Count Sergei Lvovich Levitsky (1819 - 1898), is considered one of the patriarchs of Russian photography and one of Europe's most important early photographic pioneers, inventors and innovators. Of noble birth, he was a cousin of Aleksandr Ivanovich Herzen, the writer, husband to Anna Antonovna and father to Rafail Sergeevich Levitsky (1847-1940), a Peredvizhniki artist who was court photographer to Tsar Nicholas II, the last emperor of Russia.

Considered the best of Russia's portrait photographers, the Levitsky studio photographed four generations of the Romanov dynasty. In 1877, it was awarded the title Photographer of their Royal Majesty.

He wrote memoirs in two volumes entitled, Reminiscences of an Old Photographer (1892) and How I Became a Photographer (1896). He is buried in St. Petersburg's Smolenskoye Cemetery.

Upon his father's death in 1898, Rafail Levitsky continued the operation and tradition of the Levitsky portrait studio taking the now famous photos of Czar Nicholas II and Czarina Alexandra and their children Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna of Russia, Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna of Russia, Grand Duchess Maria Nikolaevna of Russia, Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia, and Alexei Nikolaevich, Tsarevich of Russia.

The Levitsky Studio was located in Moika River Embankment, 30 (1860s), Nevsky Prospect, 28 (1890s), and Kazanskaya Street, 3 (1898, the house is not preserved). It remained in operation until it was closed by the Soviets in 1918.

Size: 10.5 x 6.5 cm approx
Product Code 5288