After discovering a bloody boot on a frozen river, Russian policemen knew this story wouldn’t have a good ending. Indeed, what they found further downstream, floating in a crater in the ice, was the frozen body of one of Russia’s most infamous characters – Rasputin. A century later, the story of his death remains as fascinating as ever.
Grigoriy Efimovich Rasputin is thought to have been born on January 10, 1869, in the West Siberian village of Pokrovskoye. Raised in a peasant family in Imperial Russia, it seemed he was destined for a life of hard labor and poverty. Nobody could have imagined his rise to one of the most powerful positions in the Russian Empire.
At just 18, Rasputin took a religious direction in life, spending a few months at a monastery in the town of Verkhoturye. Upon his return to Pokrovskoye, he married Praskovia Fyodorovna. The pair had two girls and a boy together. But by this point, Rasputin had made up his mind to travel as a “strannik,” a sort of a pilgrim.