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Anastasia: The Riddle of Anna Anderson

de Peter Kurth

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ANASTASIA is the first, definitive, full-length biography of 'Anna Anderson' who has claimed since 1920 to be Grand Duchess Anastasia of Russia, the youngest daughter of the Tsar. It is the story of a mystery, a controversy, a mammouth court-case and a twentieth-century legend which until now has never been examined with full access to the wealth of private papers, letters, interviews and original sources drawn on by Peter Kurth. On 17 February 1920 a young woman was rescued from a Berlin canal and taken to a local asylum. Her body bore the scars of bullet and bayonet wounds. For a long time she refused to give her name, and was known as Fraulein Unbekannt (Miss Unknown). When she did declare herself - as the Grand Duchess Anastasia, youngest daughter of the murdered Romanovs - she became the centre of a storm of controversy that still continues after her death in 1983. Peter Kurth's brilliant and meticulously researched account shows that the evidence that Anna Anderson was Anastasia is in the end overwhelming. Nevertheless the extraordinary secrecy which still shrouds some of the key evidence suggests that, as her uncle the Grand Duke of Hesse wrote, an investigation of her identity could be dangerous.… (mais)
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Exibindo 5 de 5
This powerful book, which I first read when I was about eleven, launched an enduring fascination with the Russian Revolution and the imperial family. I am glad that I was years beyond the height of my obsesssion by the time the disillusioning news that DNA proved that Anna Anderson could not have been Anastasia came out, but I still value this book for its poignant portrayal of the difficulties and disruptions suffered by those emigres whose lives were so drastically altered by war and revolution. ( )
1 vote MHelm1017 | Dec 16, 2010 |
1803 Anastasia: The Riddle of Anna Anderson, by Peter Kurth (read 24 Oct 1983) I have read a lot about the Anastasia question and as soon as I saw this book on the shelf at our library I checked it out and read it. It is by one who believes Anastasia escaped and that Anna Anderson is Anastasia. The book tells this whole story of Anna Anderson up to 1981, when she is about dead. I wish the book were more rigorously objective, but it is well-done and one concludes that Anna Anderson was Anastasia. The thing to remember is that there is no reason to assume that Anastasia was smart or well-balanced mentally. One of the big difficulties was that Anna Anderson would not talk Russian, and this book tries to excuse that, and indicates she knew Russian but wouldn't talk it often. The book tells a lot about court proceedings in Germany which ended in the court saying that she had not proven she was Anastasia. I feel she was, but whether this will ever be generally accepted I do not know. This was an extremely easy to read book, and I now feel I know as much about Anastasia as it is reasonably possible for me to know. [This was written right after I read the book, and long before I ever heard of DNA.] ( )
  Schmerguls | Oct 10, 2008 |
I loved this book, couldn't put it down. Do I know that Anna was Anastasia? No, but the author made a very good case and just glimpsing inside the lives and minds of the Romanov refugees was interesting in itself. ( )
  dellena | Jul 19, 2007 |
OK, I know she's not the real Anastasia, but I like to pretend she is. ( )
  picardyrose | Apr 20, 2007 |
www.thebookpond.se ( )
  anlor43 | Apr 9, 2007 |
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You gods look down,
And from your sacred vials pour your graces
Upon my daughter's head! Tell me (mine own)
Where hast thou been preserved? where lived? how found
Thy father's court? For thou shalt hear that I,
Knowing by Paulina that the oracle
Gave hope thou wast in being, have preserved
Myself to see the issue.

The Winter's Tale
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I was thirteen when I fist saw Anastasia, the Ingrid Bergman film based on the life of Anna Anderson, thw woman who claimed to be the only surviving daughter of the Tsar of Russia. (preface)
Later on the unknown woman always insisted that it was the asylum that 'broke' her - not the loss of her family and her country, not even the savage attack on her own life, but the two years she spent at Dalldorf in the company of a dozen spitting, jabbering, incontinent lunatics.
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ANASTASIA is the first, definitive, full-length biography of 'Anna Anderson' who has claimed since 1920 to be Grand Duchess Anastasia of Russia, the youngest daughter of the Tsar. It is the story of a mystery, a controversy, a mammouth court-case and a twentieth-century legend which until now has never been examined with full access to the wealth of private papers, letters, interviews and original sources drawn on by Peter Kurth. On 17 February 1920 a young woman was rescued from a Berlin canal and taken to a local asylum. Her body bore the scars of bullet and bayonet wounds. For a long time she refused to give her name, and was known as Fraulein Unbekannt (Miss Unknown). When she did declare herself - as the Grand Duchess Anastasia, youngest daughter of the murdered Romanovs - she became the centre of a storm of controversy that still continues after her death in 1983. Peter Kurth's brilliant and meticulously researched account shows that the evidence that Anna Anderson was Anastasia is in the end overwhelming. Nevertheless the extraordinary secrecy which still shrouds some of the key evidence suggests that, as her uncle the Grand Duke of Hesse wrote, an investigation of her identity could be dangerous.

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