Princess Olga Romanoff has written her memoirs to record the stories passed down by her Romanov father. She is the youngest child of Prince Andrew Alexandrovich of Russia, nephew of tsar Nicholas II – the last tsar who was executed together with his family by the Bolsheviks in 1918. Her mother, Nadine McDougall from the famous McDougall flour-milling family, was of Scottish and Scandinavian descent, and Prince Andrew’s second wife.
Her grandmother was the sister of tsar Nicholas II, and her great grandmother was her Imperial Highness Maria Feodorovna (Princess Dagmar of Denmark). Her aunt, Irina, was married to Felix Yusupov, who murdered Rasputin.
Her book is peppered with amusing anecdotes about the British Royal Family, their British cousins. The reader will also get a glimpse of the Princess’s cosseted childhood. She was looked after by a number of nannies and then privately educated at home, as her mother remembered the terrible time she herself had had at boarding school. But Princess Olga preferred the outdoor life and riding her ponies. She still laughs at one of her mother’s ambitions which was to marry her off to Prince Charles! It was indeed an unusual upbringing with a snobbish and strict mother of Scottish and Scandinavian background, and a more relaxed and indulgent Romanov father whose occupation was stated as ‘Prince of Russia’ on Olga’s birth certificate.
Her home, Provender House is crammed full of fascinating Romanov memorabilia, from the crockery used by the Tsar and his family during their final captivity in Ekaterinburg, to the diamond blade penknife used for scratching the news of Prince Andrew’s birth on a window pane in the Winter Palace – still there for visitors to see.
The rambling 30-room Provender House, now open to the public, has indeed been witness to some extraordinary tales – many of them hitherto untold – handed down by Princess Olga’s father.
In her memoirs we are taken on a journey from now and back to then, to an Imperial Russia that no longer exists, to the horror of the revolution and the fate of those who had to flee and start a new life elsewhere, all the way to the life of Princess Olga Romanoff today. She has written bitingly funny memoir and history of her family, richly illustraded with photos and rights are sold to a wide range of countries.
Princess Olga is patron of a number of balls helping to raise funds for charities. The Russian Summer Ball, and more recently The Russian Debutante Ball in London, are just two of the most prestigious social events that she supports with her patronage. She is the President of the Romanov Family Association.
This is the first book of memoirs by a Romanov family descendant in many years.
Princess Olga, a Wild and Barefoot Romanoff
Manuscript in English