Rasputin's Reputation Summary

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Chapter 3: Rasputin’s Reputation and its Effect
Much of the Rasputin’s negative public perception stemmed from his reputation of being sexually aggressive and indulgent in alcohol to the point of belligerence. This behavior was unacceptable for someone who claimed to be righteous and appointed by God, and also from someone who was so prominent in the royal court. This view of Rasputin was common between both the nobility and the common people of Russia. There was also an appeal made by the Duma for Rasputin to be forced to leave. Independent described Rasputin as "an Olympian-sized sleazeball whose combined taste for power and flesh has ensured the world will always regard with a hypocritical mixture of disapproval and rapt fascination" (Reeves
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They also seem to have been not only directed toward Rasputin but toward the royal family as well. Despite the evidence shown through the testimonies and the rumors, it is said that the tsarina refused to believe that Rasputin was the one being portrayed in the slander. “Still the Tsarina refused to hear a word against him, preferring to believe that an imposter was posing as Rasputin and misbehaving in order to blacken his name” (Welch, 2014). This denial of the tsarina would have furthered the rumors about the adultery between Rasputin and the tsarina and provided more ammunition with which to fuel distrust among the royal family and the people of …show more content…
The reason for much of Rasputin’s negative public image and reputation was that there was such an air of mystery surrounding him, that they were really unsure about Rasputin, which unnerved them. Many historians struggle with whether or not Rasputin was indeed a holy man or an imposter, because not only is there very little evidence from that time period, but also because Rasputin was a very confusing man at that time as well. Historian Robert Massie explores this by saying, “Rasputin was a man of two faces, he had this holy man persona, he is also enormously dissolute” (Massie, R). Warth then goes on to implore, “Were his words part of the divine truth or was the man the Devil emissary?” (Warth). Rasputin is a contradiction, which is why when the nickname “Holy Devil” is introduced by ex-monk Iliador, it was widely accepted and used, because the people felt as if his actions contradicted what he claimed to be, which strengthened the mistrust from them.
Lastly, there are other factors that contributed to Rasputin’s death. “Late in 1916, with the war going badly for Russia, food shortages leading to open revolt and the tsar and tsarina increasingly isolated, a plot was concocted to kill Rasputin” (Nott).

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