Magazine
Latest Issue

Rasputin’s ghost

In a decaying Russian village, I meet Rasputin's "great grandson" and spend the night with a babushka who has lost so much

By Colin Thubron   June 1999

I hitch a lift to the small, unkempt village of Pokrovskoe, the birthplace of Rasputin. The truck-driver who dropped me off swore that a relative of Rasputin survived here. But the only people in sight were some old women seated on benches. At the mention of a man resembling Rasputin they waved us in varying directions; eventually we arrived outside a ramshackle house with closed shutters, and a voice inside cried out: “Viktor!”

Perhaps he had been warned of our approach, because he was dressed for the part. As he loped towards us across his vegetable patch, even the truck-driver…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk

More From Prospect