Famous Family History Grigori Rasputin Parents

About the family of famous Russian leader Grigori Rasputin, history of his father and mother.

GRIGORI RASPUTIN (1871?-1916),

Russian mystic, political figure

His Roots: Fact and legend are hopelessly entwined in the many accounts of this odd peasant guru who wandered forth from Siberia to exert profound influence over the dying days of the Russian monarchy-and few such accounts are even remotely objective. Biographers have portrayed him as a Manson-like evil genius, a saint, or a martyr; even his own daughter's numerous writings have done little to separate man from myth.

Details of Rasputin's early life in the western Siberian village of Pokrovskoye have taken on a folkloric quality. Assorted accounts relate that he preferred communing with nature rather than with people; that he healed sick or injured live-stock with a touch; that while plowing one day, he experienced a sudden, beatific vision of the Virgin, which formed the basis of his lifelong mysticism; and that he wandered near and far like the prophets of old, expounding Scripture in simple, homely terms. What seems well established is that his presence radiated an intense aura, that he exuded a powerful sexual charisma, and that he was, at times, an effective healer.

The picture that emerges is of a wholly conventional peasant background-if anything, one with more material advantages than was typical of the time and place. Grigori was the third and youngest child of Efim Akovlevich Rasputin, a prosperous farmer and village elder. Accounts differ as to whether Efim was illiterate. Some say that he read the Bible nightly to his family and insisted that Grigori memorize long passages, but most agree that Grigori himself was illiterate until he reached adulthood. When his son set out on his first pilgrimage, Efim's judgment was that "Grigori has become a pilgrim out of laziness-nothing else."

"I think it fair to say," wrote Rasputin's daughter Maria, "that Efim was never to understand his strange son, although when, in later years, he saw him receiving the attention, and even adulation, of the aristocracy of St. Petersburg, he began to realize that there might be more to the boy than he had thought."

Anna Egorovna, Rasputin's mother, may have been a Samoyed of Mongolian origin from Tobolsk.

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