Rus Articles Journal

The Roman country house of Abamelek, or return of the Armenian prince

In the center of Rome on one of the most beautiful hills of Dzhanikolo along ancient Avrelianskaya Road is located Abamelek`s country house from the North bordering on Vatican and only on a quarter inferior to it on the area. The magnificent country house (under it passes the branch line connecting the Holy See to a network of roads of Italy) bearing a name of the last owner - Semyon Semyonovicha Abamelek - Lazareva, nowadays is the official residence of the ambassador of the Russian Federation in Italy and thanks to the will of the Armenian prince became one of the most valuable foreign possession of Russia. The prince Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek - Lazarev suddenly died on September 19, 1916 in Kislovodsk of heart paralysis at the age of 59 years. The burial ceremony in St.-Petersburg was, according to a princely rank and the held position, rich and solemn. His wife - Maria Pavlovna, nee Demidova, the daughter of the well-known gornozavodchik and the Kiev mayor, endured the husband almost for forty years and is buried on the country house near Florence. They had no children, they did not leave posterity. But by what to measure that priceless cultural and spiritual heritage which was left by our outstanding compatriot Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek-Lazarev? The most worthy and, alas, last representative of two well-known Armenian surnames of philanthropists and patrons.
1918. Nizhny Novgorod. All day security officers without results rummaged in a mansion of the legendary St. Petersburg rich man prince Abamelek - Lazarev. Opened floors, taped walls, oblazit the cellar and an attic - it is empty! The charter, one of “treasure-hunters“ leaned the elbows on a wooden curl on a wall. And there was unexpected: the part of the oak panel with a scratch drove off from easy pressing aside, and before eyes of the amazed security officers there was a metal door. The narrow pass conducting to the vaulted room filled with shod chests which burst with table silver, east fabrics, bronze and jewelry was behind it: diamond necklaces and diadems, gold rings, earrings, brooches. It was only the small part of an enormous condition of Semyon Semyonovich stored not only in Russia, but also in Italy where the prince carried out considerable part of the life. The prince Semyon Semenovich was one of the richest people of Russia - the large landowner and the industrialist, the chairman of Mountain council, participated in work of the government commissions. Only in the Western Urals it possessed Kizelovsky, Polazninsky, Chermozsky steel works, Kizelovskiye and Lunyevskiye coal mines, salt-mines to Usolye, and also the gold and platinum mines. In a patrimonial tree of the prince branches of many well-known families of Russia, Armenia and Georgia were weaved (see the genealogical scheme below). In the area of the father Semyon Semyonovich was from Abamelekov which consisted related to the Georgian imperial family of Bagrationi. To Russia Abameleki moved at a turn of the XVII-XIX centuries after accession of Georgia to Russia. Perhaps, they even accompanied the last Georgian tsar George XII. Catherine II granted them the nobility and the coat of arms. From mother Semyon Semyonovich svya - Zahn with an old Armenian family of Lazarev whose first representatives moved to Russia in 1747 from Persia. Lazar Lazarev was a supplier of silk fabrics to Catherine II`s palace. In Winter and Taurian walls of some halls are upholstered with the silks made on its manufactory. In 1814 - 1815 Lazarev` family promoted foundation in Moscow of Institute of east languages (LIVYa) which they for many years patronized. Emergence history in Russia of the diamond which received the name of “Eagles“ is connected with a name of Ivan Lazarev. He bought in Amsterdam one of the largest diamonds in the world - “Tear up - and - Nur“ (Mora of light) which at one time decorated a throne the Nadir - the shah, was kidnapped then, passed from hand to hand. Lazarev sold unique diamond to the count Orlov, and that presented it to Catherine II, and diamond decorates a scepter of the Russian emperors since then, is now stored in Diamond fund in Moscow. Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek-Lazarev was born in Moscow in 1856. The childhood and youth passed it in the house number 40 on Nevsky Avenue, near the Armenian church. He got a brilliant education: ended the historian - philological faculty of Sankt - the St. Petersburg university and with ease defended the dissertation. Subsequently became the honourable trustee of Lazarevskoye of institute of east languages, had a high court rank of the stallmaster, however, inherited more. The young prince was fond of literature, art and archeology, dreamed of scientific career. Having graduated from the university, in 1881 he together with the artist V. Polenov and professor of arts of the St. Petersburg university A. Prakhov made a trip over the countries of the Mediterranean. In 1882, during a trip to Syria, the prince made large archaeological discovery. On excavation it found a stone plate with an inscription in the Greek and Aramaic languages in once blossoming Palmyra - it was the customs tariff of 137 by means of which then classic Aramaic language was deciphered. And the find of Abamelek - Lazarev became the largest contribution to science that seldom falls to lot to the beginning orientalist. For opening of inscriptions of the Palmira tariff to it awarded a rank of the graduated in a military academy of the French academy, the ministry of national education and fine arts of France elected it the honorary member, having awarded with a distinction on a rank of “Officier de L`Instruction Publique“ of the government of France. In 1897 Abamelek-Lazarev became related with other noble and rich family of armorers and gornozavodchik Demidov. On April 3, 1897 the prince S. S. Abamelek-Lazarev submits the application to the minister of national education Delyanov on “permission to marry the maiden Maria Pavlovna Demidova“. Maria is the daughter of the princess Elena Trubetskoy (her father - Pyotr Trubetskoy was a leader of the St. Petersburg nobility) and Pavel Pavlovich Demidov, the prince San - Donato, the valid councilor of state, the Kiev mayor, the owner Nizhne - the Nizhny Tagil mountain district. It was a girl clever, beautiful, brilliantly educated in addition also the ballerina. For it is later than Abamelek - Lazarev finished and reconstructed some buildings of the well-known Roman country house, having turned them into magnificent salons with chandeliers from the Venetian glass “murano“, the columns from the most rare breeds of marble decorated with pictures and sculptures of the huge collection. In effect, he built the new beautiful room for balls and receptions. However, history of this country house is worthy separate attention, as owing to the architecturally - the art importance and because exactly thanks to this purchase the Armenian prince Abamelek - Lazarev forever became the European history. In 1907, in one of travel across Italy, Semyon Semyonovich bought a huge country house in historical part of Rome. Willa Torrey was constructed in 1730 and occupies nearly 34 hectares on Dzhanikolo`s hill, opposite to Vatican. At the hill on which there is a country house, the history. In Ancient Rome on this place there was a cemetery of the gladiators who died in Neron circus ring. During archeological excavations on a country house several gravestones with Latin inscriptions were found: “Corpus custodes Nerone“. In the Middle Ages this picturesque corner beyond Tiber was chosen by the Roman nobility who built the country residences here. There were vineyards and kitchen gardens, and the earth belonged to several owners. At the time of purchase the country house consisted of separate possession with two half-ruined palaces which were united subsequently by the new owner in remarkable architecturally - park ensemble. On Abamelek`s country house - Lazarev arranged the rich collection: pictures, gobelins, antique mosaics, antique marble, woodcarving. The re-planned park set with beautiful trees and bushes, decorated with antique sculptures, marble bathtubs from ancient Roman a term, fountains and amphoras. On Torrey`s country house the prince also lodged with the wife, buying up unique works of art in Italy. Their new dwelling turned into some kind of cultural center where he gave parties of the classical ballet, concerts, generously patronized the Russian artists and sculptors. From all constructions remained the palace today “Belvedere“ where now the residence of the ambassador of Russia in Italy, the representative room better known as “The palace of muses“, “Hunting lodge“ in Mauritian style, the former stables and the wing carrying the name “Garibaldi`s Lodge“ is located. Of course, the palace “Belvedere“ is most interesting. The age totals him several centuries. In any case, the building was known in 1655 as Torrey`s country house, then it was acquired by the cardinal Feronio Ferroni who reconstructed it on the project of the famous Florentine architect Alessandro of Galilee (1691 - 1736), the author of a facade of a world famous Roman Cathedral San Giovanni ying Latierango. Willa Ferroni was already designated on the Rome map made by the historian Nolli in 1748. Within the next years it replaced many owners: the duke Giovanni Torloniya, the countess Theresa Mareskotti, the gentleman Vincenzo Valentini, the countess Aemilia Giraud, Andrea Doria`s aristocrats of Pamphylia, Bettino Ricasoli and, at last, the Russian prince Abamelek - Lazarev. The prince excitedly undertook restoration of unique constructions. Thanks to the help of the talented architect Vincenzo Moraldi it could keep and partly restore what remained after the destructions which happened during war of 1849 when almost all buildings on Dzhanikolo`s hill were damaged (Abamelek`s country house adjoins to country houses Aurelia (The American academy in Rome), Giraud Rouspoli (Embassy of Ireland at the Holy See), Lante (The Finnish institute of Romance researches, Recession (Embassy of Spain), Sharra (the Italian Institute of the German researches). Then Vatican invited the French troops for fight against supporters of association of Italy. On a country house some time was lodged by the French soldiers. They were replaced by Giuseppe Garibaldi`s associates. According to unconfirmed data, in a wing its staff just was also located. Halls of a country house are decorated with carved ceilings, picturesque plafonds and chandeliers from the Venetian glass. There was (and remained) all: Flemish gobelins of the 16-17th centuries, ancient Roman mosaics, antique columns, marble busts of the Roman emperors. There is even an ancient Roman marble statue of Venus of the 3rd century BC. Ancient Roman sculptures still decorate park along with marble soldiers, various fountains, amphoras and an Etruscan sarcophagus of the 3rd century BC. After death of the husband, the princess Maria within thirty years kept order here, was engaged in restoration and managed to keep a unique collection. Exactly here, in “The palace of muses“, the state inclusion of Russia is still carried out. Interiors of the palace are in itself works of art. In them painting, a sculpture, objects of applied art are harmoniously connected. In one of small halls there is Apollo`s sculpture which is carried to the 16th century. But its pedestal is more interesting than a statue. It is part of a unique ancient Roman monolithic column. It was made of the most rare African black marble with impregnations of red and green tones. Found it during excavation in the middle of the 19th century. Originally this column was used as a pedestal for Saint Peter`s statue in Vatican. But over the years it cracked, and the monument was removed. The lower part of a column was also bought by the prince. Among works of painting it is necessary to mark out especially “Diana`s Bathing“ the Venetian artist of the 16th century Pietro of Liberia and “Saint Elizabeth`s Favour“ of Bartolomeo Schedoni (1578 - 1618). Were in meeting of the prince and work of other famous masters. Eyewitnesses tell that its collection of antiques and works of art was so rich and various that could decorate any museum of the world. In the magnificent palace Semyon Semyonovich held a reception, balls, evenings of classical dance on which also the princess Maria Pavlovna often acted. On these performances all Roman nobility usually gathered. There were on a country house even members of the Russian imperial family. The residence of the prince became one of the centers of the Russian culture in Rome. Here also Tatyana Sukhotina - Tolstaya, the beloved daughter of Lev Nikolaevich with whom Abamelek`s couple was connected by close friendship stayed. Their mutual sympathy arose in the Tula province as one of Abamelek`s possession - Lazarev - Goloshchapovo`s estate was in the neighbourhood with Tolstykh`s manor in Yasnaya Polyana. The first “neighbour`s“ visits of Semyon Semyonovich concerned to Lev Nikolaevich and Sofya Andreevna to 1880 - m to years and their communication continued till last days lives of the prince. In the letter of August 27, 1888 Sofya Tolstaya writes Semyon Semyonovich: “Very much - very much I thank you, the kind prince, for the sent pictures which are so good that delighted all … When Lev Nikolaevich saw Maria Shmidt`s group, he exclaimed: “Yes, it is chef - d’oeuvre!“. all yasnopolyansky inhabitants welcome you, and I strong shake to you hands and I regret that I will not see you once again during this season …“. In archives two pictures of 1884 and 1888 “Tolstaya in the bosom of the family“, taken by Semyon Semyonovich remained. He liked to photograph, during travel he not only kept diaries, but also photographed. In “The inventory of the house on Million“ in its library among books and albums “the box with films“ was found. On June 20, 1912 Semyon Semyoovich was in Yasnaya Polyana on Lev Nikolaevich`s grave which made sad impression on him: “Lev Nikolaevich`s grave all is covered with wreaths and bouquets, mainly from cornflowers. Sadly and false looks. Immediately I leave, bad, gloomy thoughts … Approaching the house, I see the careful, arranged flower beds around … The countess is very fresh, vigorous and even some cheerful. Spoke about the past, regretted that I have no children at such wealth, on my remark that there are nephews, told that at all in successors there will never be a shortcoming“. The message about death of the prince in Kislovodsk was unexpected. After death of the husband Maria Pavlovna, according to the will, received Abamelek`s country house in lifelong use. According to the same will after her death Abamelek`s country house had to carry over the Russian imperial academy of Arts for the purpose of the organization of board for artists and sculptors there as continuation of the traditions which developed during lifetime of the prince. It was specified in the will: “Willa has to carry the name “Willa Abamelek“, trees and bushes not to be cut down, the park not to be built up, objects of the fine arts and antiquity to be stored in an integrity and not to be taken away from a country house. And the earth belonging to a manor should not be let“. The national commissariat of foreign affairs of the USSR unsuccessfully conducted trial, trying to assert the right of inheritance the Soviet party. But as it was talked of the Soviet organizations, i.e. absolutely others, than about what it was told in the will, civil court in Rome the decision of April 13, 1929 and on April 27, 1936 declared M. P. Demidova the only heir of a country house. From 1923 to 1941, that is nearly two decades, the Italian authorities (soon in Italy came to Mussolini`s power) did not recognize the will. One year prior to the end of World War II according to the warrant of the military authorities of the Soyuznoykkontrolny commission on Abamelek`s country house the Club of the Soviet officers and the Soviet representation at Control commission of powers - winners were placed. There was a person who remembered that the country house according to the will of the prince has to pass Russia. This circumstance had considerable value when determining final destiny of a country house: in 1946 the Italian authorities confiscated it from the widow Abamelek - Lazarev the royal decree with the promise to pay compensation of its cost. The fact that Maria Pavlovna did not live on a country house formed the basis and that came to desolation. In the following, 1947, already government decree - Italy managed to turn during this time from the kingdom to the republic - the country house was transferred to the Government of the Soviet Union. It became withobstvennost of the USSR not without participation of the leader of the Italian communists Palmiro Tolyatti who at this time was not for long holding a post of the Minister of Justice. Right after it on a country house diplomats of Embassy of the USSR accommodated, several inhabited cases were constructed. There receptions are carried out and the personal residence of the ambassador is located. However, carrying out the will of the prince, on a country house the artists, sculptors, artists coming to the capital of Italy stop. They in the “Garibaldi`s Lodge“ which is specially equipped for this purpose live. Recently in the territory of a country house Abamelek was constructed the orthodox cathedral Saint of the Great martyr Ekaterina. Vatican did not object to it, having laid down only one condition - that the cross on its dome was not higher, than a cross on St. Peter`s Cathedral, located in the neighbourhood. From walls of an Orthodox church to Vatican twenty minutes of walking. The view of its belltower opens nearly from rooms of the pontiff. In spite of the fact that the temple was built to territories, the being property of the Russian Federation, construction in the Eternal city, especially in it prirodno - is permitted to a park zone only by way of exception, on special permission of the city hall. For example, in 1958 three houses and the pool appeared in its territory as a result of the multiple-pass compromise reached between the Roman authorities and embassy: the embassy sold to municipality one and a half hectares of the earth, instead of the power created kondominimum and built seven buildings there: four on the municipal earth, three for embassy. The pool appears as “the tank for the fire-prevention purposes“ to this day … Shortly before death in 1955 Maria Pavlovna visited the Roman country house confiscated from it nine years ago Abamelek and, speak, was satisfied: the country house was put in order, and scheduled restoration maintenance is conducted still. Before inaccessible for visit, a country house Abamelek is known to all Rome now: here concerts are arranged, exhibitions of works of the Russian artists are held. However, and now it is available to the elite. Maria Pavlovna endured the beloved husband almost for forty years. Having buried the prince Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek-Lazarev in St.-Petersburg, on Armyansk the Smolensk cemetery she returned to Italy and moved to live on the patrimonial country house of Pratolino near Florence created as envisioned by Francesco I Medici in the 16th century. It was decorated by outstanding Florentine sculptors of Buontalenti and Dzhambolonya. On 224 hectares besides the residence where there passed Maria`s childhood, there were five estates with houses for country families and numerous other constructions, and also the unique garden passing into the wood and the known statue of the aged man symbolizing Appeninsky mountains of work of Dzhambolonyi. In 1922 in memory of the mother Maria Pavlovna in Pratolino built the musical pavilion - Sogro of musicale where public concerts were arranged. In 1935, following the husband`s precepts, the princess founded the National house for seriously ill patients of participants of World War I. Four more years later in Pratolino`s suburb she rented housing for the poor people who remained homeless. It put many forces and means not only in preservation of this unique historical and cultural monument. In Palatinsky gallery of the Florentine Palazzo Pitti its gift - a ceremonial portrait of A. N. Demidov of a brush of Karl Bryullov hangs now. These people were connected by a lot of things. Anatoly Demidov ordered to young nobody then not to famous Karl Bryullov a cloth “The last day Pompeii“ with which its world glory of the painter began. In gallery the special hall is allocated to a bryullovsky portrait of Anatoly Demidov. Grateful Florentines called by the name of Nikolay Demidov who was the Russian envoy in Florence, one of its areas. On it the monument to N. N. Demidov is established. Maria Pavlovna died in 1955, without having left successors. She is buried on the country house in Pratolino near the temple built by Bernardo Buontalenti in 1580. On a grave there is a marble gravestone, and still people bring flowers here, remembering the hostess and her kind acts. On July 24, 1955 “La Nazionale“ wrote: “Maria Demidova`s will is opened … In the presence of the few relatives, and among them there are a prince Pavel Yugoslavsky and the count Amedeo Noguera, nephews died, and the notary Benelli declares the only heir of Pavel Yugoslavsky. In the will there is no word neither in relation to other persons, nor to the charitable organizations …“ One of Maria Demidova`s sisters - Aurora Pavlovna was married to Arseny Karadjordjevic, the brother of future king of Yugoslavia. In 1892 they gave birth to the son Pavel. Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek-Lazarev was a trustee for the prince Pavel Karadjordjevic to his majority (on April 15, 1915 he was 21 years old). Pavel Karadjordjevic died in Paris in 1976. In seven years prior to death he sold all property of a country house of Pratolino at Sotheby`s auction. In 1995 his successors exposed for sale at Sotheby`s in London a portrait of the beauty Aurora Demidova-Karamzina, the grandmother Maria Demidova. Despite very high price, the Tretyakov gallery, representatives of banks, and also Galina Pavlovna Vishnevskaya participated in the auction. She also managed to buy malt liquor of the Russian beauty for 133 500 pounds. In the temple on Pratolino`s country house by order of Maria Pavlovna near a marble gravestone board of her father Pavel Demidov the bas-relief with the image of a profile of the husband - Semyon Semyonovich is walled in a wall. And in Rome, on Dzhanikolo`s hill memory of the prince thanks to whom one of the oldest and the biggest country house of Rome belongs to Russia today was immortalized by representatives of the Armenian diaspora. On the funds raised by them on a country house Abamelek is established a monument to the prince of work of the sculptor Martyn Kakosyan. As if more than 80 years later after the death the industrialist and the patron, the researcher and the aristocrat Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek - Lazarev returned on the favourite country house again. Willa Abamelek.

“The Russian Word“ the Moscow Armenian colony is received by
1916, 22 of September
news of death of the honourable trustee of LIVYa, the stallmaster of the Highest Yard prince Semyon Semyonovich Abamelik-Lazarev who died on September 20 in Kislovodsk. The dead - the grandson of the founder of LIVYa E. L. Lazareva. In the person of the dead Armenians lost the large philanthropist who was sensitively treating cultural needs of the Armenian people. At the beginning of the European war the prince S. S. Abamelek - Lazarev offered one million rubles on increase in air fleet. The dead - the owner of the industrial enterprises and agricultural manors. It possesses in the Urals several big plants, the gold and platinum mines and salt-mines in upper courses of Kama.

“The Russian Word“ of
1916, 28 of September
arrived To Moscow from Kislovodsk a body of the prince S. S. Abamelik - Lazarev. At the station at the mourning car the archimandrite armyano - the Gregorian confession the father Iusik in concelebration of the prior of the Armenian Krestovozdvizhenskaya Church of priests Agabalyan and Simeonyants made a lity … On an oak coffin of the dead silver wreaths were put: from the Moscow Armenian society with an inscription: To “The last descendant of a nice family of Lazarev prince S. S. Abamelek-Lazarev“, from Council of the Moscow Armenian churches: “To the honored chairman prince S. S. Abamelik - to Lazarev“, from LIVYa, etc. After a lity the coffin with a body of the dead was postponed for the mourning chariot. The procession went to Krestovozdvizhenskaya Church. Before memorial service the funeral oration was pronounced. To the first was spoken Armenian by the archimandrite Iusik. Former teacher of LIVYa H. And. Ioannesov characterized the dead as the outstanding archeologist. Students of LIVYa in the speeches noted mainly the relation of the dead to institute. The temple was overflowed by numerous representatives of the Moscow Armenian society. Here were the general who is also managing court part in Moscow - the aide-de-camp prince N. N. Odoevsky Maslov, the Moscow city`s mayor the general - the major V. N. Shebeko, the Member of Town Council of book M. V. Golitsyn. Among relatives of the dead were: honourable trustee of book S. B. Meshchersky and sisters of the dead princess E. S. Gagarin and countess E. S. Olsufyeva. In the evening the coffin with a body of the dead was sent to Petrograd for burial. Except relatives of the dead to Petrograd special deputation left representatives of the Moscow Armenian society on burial.

“Modern times“
1916, September
the Prince Semyon Semyonovich was considered as one of the richest people in Russia, and by quantity belonging to it lands was, undoubtedly, the largest russk. landowner.

“The Armenian messenger“
1916, No. 35
On the night of September 20 in Kislovodsk suddenly died the prince Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek-Lazarev. Memorial service for deceased was served in the hall of Manuk-Bey at first Armenian, then to Russian by priests. Semyon Semyonovich pioneer of the Palmira inscription in two languages: Greek and syriac
(Aramaic). In 1895 he visited Echmiadzin. In 1915 transferred tens of thousands of rubles addressed to Katalikos of all Armenians for refugees from the Turkish Armenia. On the contrary LIVYa built the five-floor profitable house which bequeathed to institute. On this place there was once a one-storeyed wooden house of Ekim Lazarevich Lazarev in which accepted Potyomkin-Tavrichesky. With his death the surname of Lazarev stopped, but it remained in Lazarevskoye constructed by them institute - the first nursery of education among Armenians.

The will of the house Abamelek - Lazarev to Lazarevskoye to institute. 1913
the house which is in Moscow in Armyansk the lane under the police officer number 5, property of the prince Semyon Semyonovich Abamelik-Lazarev, according to will of his mother, widow of the major general, princess Elizabeth Hristoforovna Abamelik-Lazareva, nee Lazareva, is bequeathed with structures and the earth Lazarevskoye to institute on death of the testator structures and the earth could not be aloof institute somehow and, making property of this institution, forever remained inviolable.
the Bequeathed house has to bear a name of parents and have a large sign: “House of the prince Semyon Davydovich and princess Elizabeth Hristoforovna Abamelik-Lazarevykh“.
Being property of LIVYa, the house is under authority of the administration of LIVYa, and all economic part on the house and structures is entrusted to board of institute.
Net income from the house is distributed so: goes for keeping of full guests scholars, and it is deducted on formation of the spare capital for needs of the bequeathed house and these scholars.
Number of scholars is defined by the honourable trustee of LIVYa and to the pravla - niy institute.
the pupils who are Trained for the income from the house are called Abamelik - Lazarevsky scholars.
Scholars are appointed from russkopoddanny Armenian-grigorian and no more than five Persian and citizens, in memory of Lazarev` origin from Persia.
Only by way of exception and that is temporary, for the term of not over 3 - x years, LIVYa is allowed to occupy part of apartments of the house bedrooms, classes, etc.

“January, 1917. To the Holy Father Katolikosu of all Armenians to Kevork V Posle of death of my unforgettable uncle prince Semyon Semyonovicha Abamelik - Lazarev I, the prince Ivan Sergeyevich Meshchersky, became the honourable trustee of LIVYa. Entering nowadays management of LIVYa, I address you, as the taking priority member of my family institution. Yes the Lord will help me to be the worthy receiver of my ancestors Lazarev and with advantage for business to bear my service for the benefit of the Armenian nation and native to me a nursery of the Armenian education. Recognizing as the debt by an example of my uncle and grandfather sacredly to observe all precepts and traditions of founders and founders of LIVYa, I most obediently ask for your help and blessing in my difficult service for the benefit of the Armenian education“.

On October 7, 1916 packages of S. S. Abamelek-Lazarev`s wills were opened in a meeting of Tutorial Council and made public.
the Copy of January 20. 1912
“In the present will by which I determine:
1) Acquired me the houses which are in St. Petersburg across Sergiyevskaya at No. 77 on Moss under No. 17, and also the half belonging to me in the house on Nikolaev at No. 55 which belongs to me together with the sister, the countess Elizabeth Semyonovna Olsufyeva, bequeath in property to the sister my princess Elena Semyonovna Gagarina.
2) Acquired me a manor in the capital suburb Polyustrovsky, called “Polyustrovsky mineral waters“, with constructions and with the earth in number of about 85 (eighty five) tithes I bequeath in property to the sister my countess Elizabeth Semyonovna Olsufyeva.
3) the house Belonging to me in Moscow in Armyansk the lane at No. 7, agrees to the desire expressed to me by my dear mother, has to come to property of Lazarevskoye of institute of east languages for establishment of grants of a name of my parents in it for pupils of gymnasia classes if the pleasure of its imperial majesty on my petition about this vsepoddanneyshe follows. If this highest pleasure does not follow, then I bequeath to the successors to finish this business.
4) I Bequeath Sankt - to the St. Petersburg Armenian churches twenty thousand rubles percent from this capital were given annually to clergy of these churches for the eternal two doleful masses and memorial services made in Smolenskaya cemeterial Church in day of my birth on the twelfth of November and in day of my death.
5) I Bequeath to named below persons in case they endure me: to children of my sister Ekaterina Semyonovna, - to Boris, Ekaterina, Sofya, Natalya, Elizabeth, children of my sister of the countess Elizabeth Semyonovna - to Andrey, Alexey, Anna hundred ten thousand rubles. To the prince Sergey Borisovich Meshchersky, princess Anna Yakimovna Trubetskoy, nee princess Abamelek, Anna Mikhaylovna Tolstaya, nee princess
Kugusheva, everyone sixty thousand rubles. To the valid councilors of state Nikolay Andreevich Novinsky and Nikolay Nikolaevich Kurmakov thirty thousand rubles to everyone, and all to these persons one million hundred twenty thousand rubles.
6) serving in day of my death in we wash with Everything the St. Petersburg house No. 22 and in my St. Petersburg office I bequeath to give everyone a biennial salary.
7) If on all these deliveries lacks my monetary capitals which remained in Russia, then to make those deliveries of the income remained in Russia mine, over founded on May 30, 1909. reserved manor, property about which the speech is lower.
8), over my reserved manor, the property remaining in Russia after me which is not mentioned above in this will, in manors, plants, mines, mines, constructions and in all personal property being in them consisting equally, in barges, steamships, I bequeath Everything in full property to my successor who will get my reserved manor and lifelong use of the income from above-mentioned property, I bequeath to my wife the princess Marii Pavlovne Abamelek - Lazareva, nee Demidova. Annually from this income I ask as the princess Mariyu Pavlovnu Abamelek - to Lazarev, and after her death of the owner of my reserved manor who will get this property, to give out lifelong to each sister who endured me thirty six thousand rubles a year.
9) Lifelong use of the income, according to point to the eighth, I bequeath to my wife the princess Maria Pavlovna if she refuses the dower for 1148 to article.
10) In view of extreme complexity of management of extensive manors with plants, mines and trade and industrial affairs, I ask my successors not to dismiss during the first three lyot after my death managers of my
offices or districts and to found for replacement me and for the general management of all affairs and manors the Head department in St. Petersburg consisting of three persons - one at the choice of the princess Maria Pavlovna, another at the choice of the full owner, and the third chairman of the board if there is no Pyotr Aleksandrovich Pepelyaev or if it is not on my service in day of my death, to choose together. If are alive, I can specify as board members of the valid councilors of state Nikolay Andreevich Novinsky, Nicolay NicolaeKurmakov`s vich, collegiate adviser of Vasily Nikolaevich Grammatchikov, nobleman Ivan Mikhaylovich Vasilyev, former polazninsky managing director. For replacement and during an illness or absence of three board members three candidates have to be chosen by the same order. Annually the board has to make a detailed report which has to be presented the lifelong owner to the naked owner …“.
the Copy of May 10, 1913
“In the present will by which I determine:
1) All these capitals, behind underwritten exceptions, I bequeath to the Tula nobility with the charitable purpose for the device in the Tula province vrachebno - sanitary points as it should be, precisely me stated at the testamentary order on the fourth of July one thousand nine hundred fourth years herewith enclosed.
2) I leave the Income from these capitals for life to my wife the princess Marii Pavlovne Abamelek - Lazareva, nee Demidova; only on her death the income will go to the device vrachebno - sanitary points. 3) From the above-mentioned capitals I bequeath: a) ten thousand francs of my chamber wife Valburg Krakh, c) two hundred thousand rubles to the Tula nobility on a grant on education of children of poor noblemen as that is in detail stated at the testamentary my order of July 4/11, 1904 herewith enclosed c) one million francs the income from it went for the maintenance of a mentioned below country house Abamelek. All these deliveries have to follow only on death of the wife of my princess Marii Pavlovny Abamelek - Lazareva.
4) the Roman my country house called “Willa Abamelek“ and which is out of Saint Pankrati`s gate - with all personal property and the earth approximately in three hundred thousand meters, I leave in lifelong possession to the wife my princess Marii Pavlovne Abamelek - Lazareva, nee Demidova. After her death a country house Abamelek with a personal property and the earth is bequeathed in property of Page. The St. Petersburg imperial academy of Arts for a residence of the guests of Academy in it studying in Rome painting, a sculpture and architecture at the expense of Academy. If the Academy sent professor, the director or the inspector to Rome, then to live to it in my country house.
my Indispensable desire that the country house would bear forever the name “Willa Abamelek“ that trees in it were not cut that the earth did not fall apart and that the earth was not given to hiring for construction of buildings that art and just ancient objects were stored in an integrity and were not taken away from a country house anywhere. Percent from bequeathed one million have to go for necessary repairs and for the maintenance of a country house as it should be, as at my life. If the academy of Arts does not wish or will not be able to accept on these conditions a country house or if the Academy ceases to send guests to Rome, then I bequeath my country house after death of my wife on the same conditions of Imperial academy of Sciences it opened the historical institute bearing my name in Rome. If the Academy of Sciences does not wish or will not be able on these conditions to accept “Willa Abamelek“ then on death of my wife to sell a country house with the earth and a personal property and the realized sum and the capital in one million francs to attach to above to the mentioned capitals, bequeathed as it is mentioned above, on vrachebno - sanitary points in the Tula province. In the seventh line from below one word of “income“ is crossed out by me. St. Petersburg. The tenth of May one thousand nine hundred thirteenth years. Amen. The stallmaster of the highest yard prince Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek - Lazarev.
Samvel MURADYAN, the member of the Moscow Armenian historian - genealogical society

Besides the well-known country houses Abamelek and Pratolino in Italy, Abamelek - Lazarev owned houses, estates and lands in Europe and Russia, in St.-Petersburg, Moscow, Bessarabia, in the Kaluga, Pskov, Tula and Yaroslavl provinces. Among them - Abamelek`s houses on the St. Petersburg Moika and Million and in Moscow Armyansk the lane.

Semyon Semyonovich Abamelek-Lazarev and Maria Pavlovna Demidova got married in 1897. After a wedding they lived in the house No. 42 on Nevsky Avenue. However, according to Ivan Lazarev`s will, in 1904 the house had to take over the Armenian community, but under certain conditions: to death of the wife of Ivan Lazarev of Ekaterina Ivanovna both houses remained under the authority of Lazarev. After death “both of us“ both houses (the house 40 and the house 42 - the Bus) except shops in the first floor, intended for a residence to successors male Lazarev to the third knee therefore, carrying out Ivan Hristoforovich`s will to continue live in the house of the ancestors Semyon Semyonovich could not any more. He buys the house 22 on Millionnaya Street reconstructed by the architect Vorotilov. The house was on one of the oldest sites of St. Petersburg which is built up in the 18th century “in a prestigious residential zone“, close to the Winter Palace. The house is this special: in 1794 Catherine II presented it to the brother of the favourite Platon Zubov - to Valerian Zubov.
Then S. Abamelek - Lazarev got the house on Millionnaya Street and Moika River Embankment in St. Petersburg at numbers 24 and 23 from the widow of the merchant Elizabeth Ivanovna Alyabyeva. The family Abamelek - Lazarev occupied houses 22/21 and 24/23 on Millionnaya Street.
B one of houses Abamelek - Lazarev decided to recreate a house No. 40 interior on Nevsky Avenue,
the Third house 26 is bought on February 18, 1914 from the Grand duke Andrey Vladimirovich. Attorneys made the bill of sale fortress “on the stone house with all at it structures and the earth, with the marble fireplaces which are in the apartment of this
of the house, with mirror and metal bathrooms“. In the bill of sale of fortress it is written down that its highness got the house from the parent of his Grand duke Vladimir Aleksandrovich according to the will,
approved as the emperor Nicholas II on January 4, 1904. The house consisting on Millionnaya Street and Moika River Embankment at numbers 26 and 25 was bought for 550 000 rubles, is decided to pay assembly and serf duties after commission and the approval of the bill of sale of fortress in the sum of 22 006 rubles of 80 kopeks in half. The house 26 passed to the new owner on March 1, 1914 and was rented. In the magnificent house Abamelek-Lazarev` family gave receptions, organizes balls to which invited all high society of St. Petersburg: ambassadors of the different countries, diplomats, ministers, generals with wives and daughters, young officers for dances.
Since June, 1917 the Spanish royal Embassy removed the first floor in the house on Million, 22, then in this house the Institute of the Russian literature (The Pushkin house) was placed.
After revolution the invaluable collections collected by S. Abamelek-Lazarev in the house on Million, 22 “were sprayed“ worldwide.

The PROFITABLE HOUSE of ELIZABETH HRISTOFOROVNA ABAMELEK - LAZAREVA. ARMYANSKY Lane, 7
By inheritance from Lazarev princes Abamelik got
possession on Armyansky Lane, nowadays the house 7.
In 1900 - 1902 on its place Abamelik-Lazarev (mother and the son) built the beautiful five-floor house with the semi-basement passing into the cellar, a garret and three travel gate. Basement and semibasement spaces were leased under warehouses (small part under apartments), and five floors under apartments. In apartments was from three to eight rooms with all conveniences, almost all with bathrooms, and they were estimated expensively - to 3 - 4 thousand rubles a year.
the Prince Semyon Semyonovich Abamelik - Lazarev presented the house Lazarevskoye to the institute located on the opposite side of the street. But on September 19, 1916 he died, and with revolution of 1917 it became impossible to carry out his will at all. Nowadays a house, in it offices of different firms are also located.
the Project of the house is executed in style of the Moscow modernist style. Despite abundance of a decor, the building, thanks to professionalism of the architect, leaves impression of ease. This impression amplifies when to the house you climb Maly Zlatoustinsky Lane. The princess Elizabeth Hristoforovna Abamelek - Lazarev was a customer. She was 67 years old when the house was built. The part of apartments of the built house was rented: money was transferred on the maintenance of the Armenian church which was a row. Regarding apartments long time there lived teachers of Lazarevskoye of institute. Cellars houses were leased under wine warehouses.
In the Soviet years nearby, in one of the neighboring lanes, lived the writer Yury Nagibin. And it left the small story, it is rather a sketch which and is called “House No. 7“. Climbing Maly Zlatoustinsky Lane, he saw the house top sliding against the blue sky with white to clouds. So it described the feelings:
“… Zlatoustinsky Lane abruptly rose to Armenian a cobblestone narrow road and plitnyaky sidewalks. From below it seemed that M. Zlatoustinsky rests against the house No. 7. Crowning with itself the steepness, the house became higher and more majestic, than actually though it already was the most tall house in Armyansk the lane.
the Direct cut of a wall, I mean a house corner at height of the last floor, under a roof, possessed one property: it gave feeling that behind it is unknown, the attracting, neznayemy distances. Nothing came to an end in
, ahead still there is a lot of everything! - here that promised a house corner in the middle of the sky. Why this corner, but not another? The right, I do not know also it and it is not important. Each person has the corner. Awfully, if it is absent. And it is awful if sometime I do not find anything round the corner my house - means, I gave up. But so far I respond to a house corner in blue, and I believe that I behind it - distances, and hear their call, I am still capable to life, tears, creativity …“ the Princess Anna Abamelek - Baratynskaya in verses of great poets

Seldom to whom life is so generous

! The thoroughbred Armenian, the Russian citizen, the owner of a subtle intellect, Anna steadily attracted to themselves looks and hearts. Knowing that the great princess - the lover of poetry what only verses were not devoted to it by admirers. Yes what admirers!
Every morning, hardly only over Baden - Baden began to play the first beams the newborn sun, the house left the woman, elderly, but kept bright traces of brilliant beauty. In it, despite a modest dark attire, the woman of quality was unmistakably guessed. She passed in a garden, sat down in the favourite place, took out a gilded note book …
Foreign languages became it native long ago, the essence of any poem clothed in tissue of the magnificent Russian, and new lines … were born
What remains to the elderly, childless widow for whom the spouse was the major part of the loving heart? For Anna Baratynskaya, the nee princess Abamelek, mercy affairs a prayer and verses became a consolation. And still - memoirs. Both light and sad, about a past, happiness irretrievable now. What Anna Baratynskaya remembered in a silent garden of a country house Hamilton, the nee Armenian princess Abamelek is the Russian poetess and the translator who was creating under the pseudonym “A Russian Lady“, eager to acquaint the poetic world of Europe with Pushkin, Tyutchev and other poets - pride of Russia?
It was about what to have a talk with the past.
… There was 1814. Labe - guards Hussars was billeted in Tsarskoye Selo. The colonel prince Davyd Semyonovich Abamelek, the hero of fights with Napoleon, and shone today as if the reflection of the lovely sun fell on it. And the sun is the daughter Anna that sits on hands at mother now. The baby cheerfully and cheerfully reaches for any in whom feels tender interest in himself. Even dashing men with a big mustache - hussars admire the charming child.
But here appears the new guest - desired - the lyceum student Alexander Pushkin, the kind friend is a hussar. It is a beret on hands the little princess Anna and begins to play with her, to chatter and laugh with animation.

Once (I remember with affection)
Ya swept away you to nurse with admiration,
you were the marvelous child.
you blossomed - with awe
I nowadays worship you.
For you heart and eyes
With involuntary awe I rush
I your glory and you,
As the nurse old, I am proud.

The poet wrote these verses in its album later when Anna, having matured, became one of the first beauties and celebutantes of St.-Petersburg.
Anna`s Father, the prince Davyd Semenovich Abamelek(1774-1833, served in Labe - guards Hussars, caused a stir during war of 1812, was awarded by the gold weapon with the inscription “For Bravery“, several Russian and foreign awards.
the Wife his Marfa Ekimovna came from the rich and patriarchal family of Lazarev which played a noticeable role both in economic and in cultural life of Russia. Children were raised in the spirit of the deepest respect for parents. In a family spoke and wrote in Russian and in French, besides, all children were trained in Armenian.
In the letter to the parents, “Marfa Ekimovna wrote: “Began to teach my Anyuta of a poarmyanska, and I dare to assure you that I will never lose sight of salutary your manuals and first of all I will always consider that my children absolutely knew national language“. Anna Abamelek in many respects inherited character of mother and was spiritually very close to her.
Dark-haired Anna turned into the magnificent beauty with fine east eyes over time. It was the true princess, clever, remarkably educated, possessing strong character and diverse talents. Foreign languages came to it extremely easily. Remarkably knowing French, English, German, the princess diligently studied Greek to read in it the Bible, to get acquainted with the Divine Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom in the Greek original. Sincerely devout, Anna remembered that she a noble family Abamelekov - priestly roots, was able and liked to pray.
Anna`s Passion were verses. The name 17 - the summer princess Anna Abamelek became known to the reading public in 1831 when Pushkin`s poem translated by it to French “Mascot“ was published. The edition of the poem became an event for all Lazarev.
Fine appearance, the father`s merits, belonging to an influential family of Lazarev and probably these translations made by the young girl paid attention to it and served as the reason of emergence of the imperial decree: “The princess Anna Abamelek was granted most gracious by us in the maid of honor to eya to imperial majesty the dearest our spouse. Nicholas II. St.-Petersburg. On April 20, 1832“.
A came then the true big love - Anna marries the colonel Labe - guards of Hussars of Irakli Baratynsky, the brother of the famous poet, the brave fighting officer who is held in general respect. As well as in a home, the atmosphere of her new family was imbued with love to art. Remarkable people of Russia entered a circle of her communication. Among them - Mikhail Yuryevich Lermontov who was on friendly terms with Anna`s brother, the artist Semyon Abamelek which together even suited a picturesque workshop in the apartment of the colonel Baratynsky.
Anna Baratynskaya and Mikhail Lermontov`s Friendship remained for the rest of life. Once Mikhail brought the poem “Last Housewarming“, asked that Anna Davydovna, using acquaintance to representatives of the reigning house, strove on its publication. Three together - Anna, her brother and the husband - saw off Michel to the Caucasus, after duel with Barant. More she did not see it. And the manuscript of “The last housewarming“ was reverentially stored at Anna Davydovna together with Pushkin dedication.
not the most optimistic impressions remained with Anna and from the last meetings with Pushkin in preduel days, terrible and painful for the poet. One of them took place in day of a name-day of Sofya Karamzina on September 17, 1836. To them to Tsarskoye Selo there arrived from St. Petersburg the great number of guests among whom as Sofya wrote, “there were Pushkin with the wife and Goncharov, Dantes, Zhukovsky, Baratynskiye, Abamelek and the count Mikhail Viyelgorsky so the real ball turned out, and very cheerful if to judge by faces of guests, everything, except for Pushkin who is sad, thoughtful all the time and something is anxious. It the melancholy and bores me. Its wandering, wild, absent look with the attention causing alarm stops only on his wife and Dantes who continues the same jokes, as before - not otkho - dya on a step from Ekaterina Goncharova, he from a distance darts tender looks at Natali with whom he eventually nevertheless danced a mazourka. It was a pity to look at a figure of Pushkin who Stoyal opposite to them, in the doorway, silent, pale and menacing“ ….
B 1889. In St. Petersburg Anna Davydovna Baratynskaya famous in light as the owner of salon, the patroness of charitable societies, senator`s widow general - the lieutenant Irakli Baratynsky … “Anna Davydovna is weak died of a long illness, - the cousin wrote it, - but now suffers less, and there are days when at all does not suffer. Botkin visited her yesterday and found that a serious illness. Mind its still light, memory huge, fearlessness before death amazing …“ Grand duchesses of the reigning house visited Nearly an every day Anna Davydovna. the Lord did not leave to
Anna Davydovna. It is firm and brightened up, with a prayer on lips it accepted good death, leaving on the earth of many prayer books on pure, on - Armenian generous, in Russian to prayerful Christian soul …
Marina KRAVTSOVA
Material from No. 1, 2009 of.