The scene of Romanov family’s murders was horrific—you can read the grim details in the last chapters of the book. One of the interesting and complicating things that happened, was that bullets aimed directly at the children’s chests bounced off and “jumped about the room like hail.” It was the jewels they’d sewn into their underclothes as they were led from their home to what they thought was safety. They’d unwittingly turned the garments into bulletproof vests, which in turn increased the terror and carnage.
[This pin features a blue diamond believed to have been cleft from the famed stone called “Le Tavernier” – the same stone as the Hope diamond. The stone, originally set as a ring for Empress Maria Feodorovna, wife of Emperor Paul I, was given to the Diamond Fund in 1860, by her daughter-in-law, the Empress Alexandra Feodorovna. For more information on the jewels of the Romanovs, visit the Alexander Palace website, a treasure-trove in its own right.]
Photo-credit: Alexander Igorevich Savelyev