Princess Xenia Andreevna of Russia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Princess Xenia Andreevna Romanoff
Princess Xenia Andreivna, 1942.jpg
Born (1919-03-10)10 March 1919
Paris, France
Died 22 October 2000(2000-10-22) (aged 81)
Spouse Calhoun Ancrum
Geoffrey Tooth
House Holstein-Gottorp-Romanov
Father Prince Andrei Alexandrovich of Russia
Mother Elisabetha Ruffo

Princess Xenia Andreevna Romanoff (10 March 1919 – 22 October 2000) was a direct descendant of the Tsars of Russia. She was a great niece of Nicholas II, the last reigning Russian Emperor.

Biography[edit]

Princess Xenia was born in Paris, on 10 March 1919. She was the eldest child of Prince Andrei Alexandrovich of Russia (24 January 1897 – 8 May 1981) and Donna Elisabetha Ruffo (1886–1940). Xenia Andreevna descended twice over from the Tsars of Russia. Her paternal grandfather, Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich, was the fourth son of Grand Duke Michael, himself the fourth son of Tsar Nicholas I. Her paternal grandmother, Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna of Russia, was the eldest daughter of Tsar Alexander III and sister to Tsar Nicholas II.

Xenias’s father - the Tsar's nephew - Prince Andrew Romanoff had in 1918 married Elisaveta Fabrizievna, daughter of Don Fabrizio Ruffo, Duca di Sasso-Ruffo. During the Russian Revolution Princess Xenia’s parents took refuge in the Crimea where they married. They escaped Russia in December 1918. Xenia’s mother was already pregnant with her when they left Russian soil. Princess Xenia had two brothers: Michael and Andrew. Her mother died of cancer during World War II. Her father remarried and Xenia had one half sister, Princess Olga Andreevna Romanoff.

Princess Xenia, called "Mysh" in the family,[1] was educated privately and spent much of her childhood in the household of her grandmother Grand Duchess Xenia at Frogmore Cottage, a grace-and-favour house in Windsor Great Park provided by King George V. She also spent some of her early years in London. After King George V's death in 1936, they moved with their grandmother to Wilderness House, another house in the royal gift, at Hampton Court.[2] Xenia and her siblings had an English nanny, but Russian was spoken at home.[3] In 1938 She received ballet lessons at the school of Russian Ballet[4]

During World War II, Princess Xenia Romanov worked as a nurse at Great Ormond Street Hospital and later worked as a volunteer with the Russian Benevolent Society for Refugees.[5] She was first married in London on 17 June 1945 to 2nd Lieutenat Calhoun Ancrum from South Carolina (b.Philippines 28 April 1915-21 Februar 1990); an American airman whose father was a colonel in the US Marine Corps. Cal Ancrum was serving abroad with the US Army when they met.[1] Initially, they lived in England, then in Germany for a time before moving to the United States. They divorced in 1954. She then met Geoffrey Tooth, head of the Mental Health section at the Ministry of Health and a member of the Expert Advisory Panel at the World Health Organisation. They married on 7 April 1958 in Tehran. During the 1970s Xenia and Geoffrey Tooth (b. 1 September 1908) settled at Rouffignac, in the Dordogne, France. Geoffrey Tooth died in 1998. Princess Xenia Romanoff outlived her husband by two years. She died on 22 October 2000 in Saint-Cernin. Princess Xenia had no children from any of her marriages.

Title and styles[edit]

N.B. After the Russian revolution members of the Imperial family tended to drop the territorial designation “of Russia” and use the princely title with the surname Romanov, usually spelled Romanoff.[6] However this title, and even her right to the surname Romanov were disputed by some.[7]

Ancestry[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Van der Kiste, Once a Grand Duchess, p. 221 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Van_der_Kiste_.26_Hall_221" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  2. ^ Van der Kiste, Once a Grand Duchess, p. 212
  3. ^ Van der Kiste, Once a Grand Duchess, p. 173
  4. ^ Van der Kiste, Once a Grand Duchess, p. 226
  5. ^ "Obituary: Princess Xenia of Russia". Telegraph.co.uk. 13 November 2000. Retrieved 20 February 2010. 
  6. ^ Almanach de Gotha (186th ed.). 2003. p. 314. ISBN 0-9532142-4-9. 
  7. ^ "Dynastic Succession". imperialhouse.ru. Retrieved 26 July 2009. 

References[edit]

  • Van Der Kiste, John & Hall Coryne. Once a Grand Duchess: Xenia, Sister of Nicholas II, Sutton Publishing, 2002. ISBN 0-7509-2749-6.