Tarakanova, Elizaveta

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Tarakanova, Elizaveta


(pseudonym; also known as Fraulein Frank or Madame Tremouille). Born circa 1745; died Dec. 4 (15), 1775, in St. Petersburg. Adventuress and imposter who presented herself as the daughter of Empress Elizaveta Petrovna and Count A. G. Razumovskii.

The true origin of Tarakanova has never been established. In 1772, in Paris, she called herself the Vladimir princess and declared herself the heiress to the Russian throne. In February 1775 she was arrested in Italy by A. G. Orlov, brought to Russia, and imprisoned in the Peter and Paul Fortress, where she died of tuberculosis. The legend of Tarakanova dying in St. Petersburg during the flood of 1777, which served as the subject of a painting by K. D. Flavitskii (1864, Tret’iakov Gallery), is not historically accurate.


Platonov, A. Kniazhna Tarakanova. Moscow, 1912.
Lur’e, S. S. “Kniazhna Tarakanuva.” Voprosy istorii, 1966, no. 10.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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