Left: Count Felix Yussupov with his wife, Irina Alexandrovna, in 1914.
This is the history of my family, set against a background of oriental savagery and magnificence, starting with the Golden Horde of the Tartars, through the Grand Duchy of Moscow to the Imperial Court of St. Petersburg, and ending in exile in a foreign land.
The family records disappeared during the Revolution, and as no other documents were available I was obliged to refer almost exclusively to a work written by my grandfather in 1886 for all data concerning the origin and history of my ancestors.
I have written very frankly about my own life, telling alike of joys and sorrows, of days of glory and days of tribulation, without keeping back any of my experiences.
I would have preferred to avoid politics, but as I have lived in a troubled period I cannot write my recollections without alluding to the dramatic events in which I took part.
This first volume deals with our carefree life before the first World War and the Revolution of 1917; a second will tell the story of our exile in foreign lands.
An abyss separates these two periods, and it is only because of a deep trust in the Almighty that we have never questioned His justice. Absolute faith in Him has alone made it possible for us to live through these years of trial without ever losing hope.
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