Tsarina Alexandra Feodorovna’s diary, while being a historical document, is not the kind that would give a reader an idea of the time or the personality of the author by describing daily hassles. The Empress, in fact, filled many pages with short spells, lyrics, poems and comments she encountered in the works of JR Miller, Thomas à Kempis, La Rochefoucauld, Wordsworth, Longfellow and others. Words like duty, humility, perseverance, self-sacrifice, and dedication are key concepts here.
On paper these might be words, but they represent the life of a woman who held a rather solitary position at the Russian court. Daughter of the German Grand Duke Louis IV and the English Princess Alice, Alix, as was the German name of Alexandra Feodorovna, was an unloved outsider. Alexandra joined the Russian Orthodox Church in order to marry her great love, Tsar Nicholas II.
Despite the loss of her homeland Hessen-Darmstadt, she was happy and passionately devoted herself to her family. In this selected fragment, Tsarina offers us a glimpse into her soul and reveals the source from which she drew her strength. Her conversion to the Russian Orthodox Christianity turns out to be not that much for the sake of her marriage but for the sake of her living soul: these notes reveal her deep devotion to her faith. The three different parts of the diary – Marriage and Family Life (1899-1904), Wise Words (1908-1913) and The Garden of the Heart (1917) offer a lot of wisdom and reflect the spirit of 2014.