Thursday, 9 March 2017

Nicholas II’s Divan in His Private Study in the Winter Palace

In 1895, the architect Krasovsky designed Nicholas II’s private study on the 2nd floor in the Gothic style. He combined the former boudoir (182) and winter garden (181) rooms, retaining two of the open arches and enclosing the middle arch with a ceramic fireplace in 181. The room 182 contained a piano, bookcases and a large Ottoman divan.

Photograph c1917 (below) of room 182 showing the divan in the far corner

On Sunday March 3rd, 1896 Nicholas wrote “… Tea in our rooms. After baby’s bath I read. Then I slept for a while on my divan. At 8PM we all had dinner together at Xenia’s and Sandro’s [1st floor of the Winter Palace] …”

On Tuesday, March 19th, 1896 he wrote “… I woke with a headache, not knowing where it came from … After tea I read and then fell asleep [on divan] for half an hour … This picked me up somewhat …”

In February 1898, Empress Alexandra was ill for weeks with measles.

On Tuesday, March 17th, 1898 Nicholas wrote “… We slept in my Study on the corner ottoman-divan, since the bedroom was being disinfected …” and on March 18th “…the bedroom has been cleaned and put in order …”

Photograph (below) of Princess Alexandra of Hohenlohe-Langenburg in Nicholas’ Private Study (182) during her visit to the Winter Palace from January 5th to February 21st, 1900 with the divan in the background

Photograph (below) of the Private Study (182) today with only two arches remaining and the oak panelling and ceiling removed
Photograph (below) of the Private Study (181) today showing the three arches with the middle where the fireplace stood


  1. Do we know what happened to the divan?

  2. In 1926, the historical rooms of Nicholas II and Alexander II were closed. The Hermitage retained some furniture, sold others. It may be in the Hermitage Storage but I just don't know. The divan that was in Nicholas' 181 is now in 177.