Tuesday, June 2, 2020

George VI of Great Britain

Prince Albert, later King George VI, 1924:
George VI of Great Britain

His lovers were:
1) Phyllis Monkman.

"His first proper sexual relationship was with a music-hall star called ­Phyllis Monkman, to whom he was so grateful he continued to send ­birthday presents for many years afterwards." (Daily Mail)
Sheila Chisholm
2) Sheila Chisholm (1895-1969)
Australian socialite & "it Girl"
Author of Waltzing Matilda

Also known as:
born Margaret Sheila Mackellar Chisholm
A good looking Sheila
Mrs. Sheila Loughborough; Lady Loughborough
Lady Milbanke
Princess Dmitri Alexandrovich of Russia.

Daughter of Harry Chisholm & Margaret Mackellar.

Wife of:
1. Francis St. Clair-Erskine, Lord Loughborough

" . . . Soon after his ]Edward VIII] departure for Australasia King George and his advisers decided that the relationship must be terminated. The first step was to detach Edward's brother Prince Albert from his mistress, Sheila, Lady Loughborough. The couple had made a foursome with Edward and Freda the previous year as 'the 4 Do's", and Sheila was a close friend of Freda's. The King promised to make Albert duke of York on condition he gave up his mistress, which the compliant Bertie duly did. Albert was then dispatched to persuade Freda to break off the relationship with Edward by letter, presumably on the rather callous assumption that Edward would have time to recover during his long tour. . . ." (King Edward VIII: An American Life: 73)


How an Aussie Sheila seduced British king
The Aussie woman who nearly changed the course of royal history
Sheila Chisholm: An Ingenue’s Introduction to High Society
The society beauty who charmed a prince (and no, it's not Cressida...)

Monday, June 1, 2020

Peter the Great of Russia--

Peter the Great of Russia
Emperor of Russia

Also known as:
Peter Alexeyevich.

Son of: Aleksei of Russia & Natalia Naryshkina.

Evdokia Lopukhina
Empress of Russia
Husband of:
1. Evdokia LopukhinaEmpress of Russia (1669-1731), mar 1689, div 1698, a.k.a. Eudoxia Lopukhina, Evdokia Feodorovna Lopukhina, daughter of Feodor Abramovich Lopukhin & Ustinia Bogdanovna Rtishcheva.

2. Martha Skavronskaya, mar 1707/1712.

A Russian harem -- "Peter's Compania".
"Peter's passion for Anna Mons was violent, and lasted long; but it by no means excluded other immoralities. In the year 1703 or 1704 there were in the palace of Preobrajensk, as if in the suite of the tsarevna Natalia, a number of young ladies belonging, like others of the German sloboda, to 'our compania,' living on terms of fellowship and close familiarity both with one another, with Menshikoff, now the director of the tsar's household, and with the tsar himself. There were two sisters of Menshikoff, Maria and Anna Danilovna; two sisters, Daria and Barbara Michaelovna Arsenieff; Anisia Cyr. Tolstoy; and Catherine Basiliefsky (afterwards Michaeloff), whose connection with Peter cannot well have begun later than February in A.D. 1704." (The Patriarch and the Tsar, Vol 6: 1057)

Peter the Great loved the female sex.
"One of Peter's contemporaries portrayed the tsar's attitude toward women very clearly, noting that 'His Highness loved the female sex,' yet relayed the tsar's statement, 'To forget service for a woman's sake is unforgivable.' Even after his marriage to Catherine, Peter did not consider himself under any obligation to preserve marital fidelity, and he had many lovers. Not only did Catherine not protest, but she herself presented him with 'little mistresses' (evidently, women who she did not perceive as rivals). When, however, she herself betrayed her husband, she was save only because, not knowing, Peter had recently had her crowned; for him to make her behavior public would have made him the laughing stock of Europe." (The Emperors and Empresses of Russia)

Peter's physical appearance & personal qualities.

"Contemporaries left many portraits of Peter at various times during his life. Here is, perhaps, one of the most complete descriptions of his outward appearance: 'Tsar Peter Alekseevich was of great height, more thin than fat. He had think, short, dark chestnut hair and big, black eyes with long eyelashes. His mouth was well formed, except for his lower lip. His face was handsome, inspiring respect at first glance. Given his great height, his legs seemed to me to be very thin. His head often jerked convulsively to the right. Peter was a head taller than all those around him (2m 4 cm, or 6 feet, 8 inches) and had great physical strength. His natural physique gave him excellent health, but in time heavy drinking and his irregular life style weakened it, and as the Northern War wound down, he began to ail frequently; he underwent water cures and took his pharmacy with him." (The Emperors and Empresses of Russia)

Distinguishing features of his character.

"The distinguishing features of his character included his love of work, his remarkable capacity for work, his curiosity, his strength of purpose and the absolute modesty of his private life. Peter lived as a soldier and a laborer; he served in the army, gradually rising through the officers' ranks of both land and sea forces as he accumulated experience; he worked as a ship master, drawing a salary only sufficient to cover his personal expenses. He lived in simple houses and disliked lavish lodgings; when he assigned residences in foreign capitals, he always chose the most modest rooms, those intended for his servitors. Receptions usually took place at the palaces of his closest companions (Menshikov and the others), so he required them to live in grand style. Peter's diet was adequate, but simple. He slept little and rose early, at five o-clock in the morning; by six he was about his business---off to his building, to the shipyards, to the Senate, or to the Admiralty. He loved physical labor and took pride in his calloused hands. At one in the afternoon (sometimes even earlier) he dined on cabbage sour, buckwheat groats, fried meat with sauces and spices, pickled cucumbers, salt meat, or ham. He disliked fist and sweets. Before dinner he drank vodka, and during the second half of the day he might drink beer and wine. He loved fruit and black bread." (The Emperors and Empresses of Russia)

His lovers were:
Alexander Menshikov
Russian statesman

Also known as:
born Alexander Danilovich Menshikov

Prince of the Russian Empire

Prince of the Holy Roman Empire
1st Duke of Ingria (Izhora)

1st Duke of Cosel
Governor-General of Ingria
Generalissimo 1727
Admiral 1726
Field Marshal 1709
Governor-General of St. Petersburg 1702
Supreme Privy Council Member 1726
President of College of War 1717
Governing Senate Member 1711
Fellow of the Royal Society 1714.

Husband of: Darya Mikhailovna Arsenyeva.

Physical appearance & persona.
"The great Prince Menshikov, the empire's mightiest satrap, 'Herzenkind' (child of the heart), the human whom after Catherine he loved the most, the one man who could absolutely 'speak for the Tsar,' who became a field marshal, First Senator, a 'Serene Highness' and a Prince of Russia, as well as a Prince of the Holy Roman Empire! The best known portrait of Menshikov shows a man with a high-domed forehead, intelligent blue-green eyes, a strong nose and a pencil-thin brown mustache. His smile is as enigmatic as the Mona Lisa's. At first, it appears blandly open and pleasant; on second glance, it seems cooler, more distant. As one considers the mouth and eyes, the smile and the general visage become decidedly calculating and unpleasant. Menshikov is dressed as the Westernized 'almost sovereign potentate' which Pushkin called him. He wears a curled white wig like a grandee of Louis XIV; an armored breastplate is covered with a white ribe edged in gilt, with golden tassels. Around his neck is a red silk scarf, and across his chest the wide blue ribbon of the Order of St. Andrew. The star of the order, along with the stars of the Polish Order of the White Eagle and another order, are pinned to the robe. One can tell, looking at this painting, that here is an exceedingly clever, enormously powerful, unforgiving man." (Peter the Great: His Life and World: 367)

" . . . Alexander Menshikov...was the son of a 'stable-boy' and had started in life as a street peddler yet became prince of the Holy Roman Empire in 1706 and field-marshal under Peter the Great... Menshikov began his career as a pastries peddler on the streets of Moscow in the 1690s. . . ." (Russia Before the 'Radiant Future': 1

Personal character & qualities: "Despite become a Prince of the Holy Roman Empire, the Duke of Izhora, and being given huge landholdings throughout Russia and Eastern Europe, Menshikov was notorious for his insatiable avarice.  Under various pretexts he would confiscate lands and embezzle money from government projects -- his wealth consisted of 90 thousand serfs, six towns, and more than a ton of gold cutlery.  He built a resident outside of St. Petersburg that mirrored that of Peter himself, the only man in Russia wealthier than Menshikov. . . . "  (Russiapedia)
Aleksander Menshikov
Is it friendship or something else?
"It has been hinted, in both foreign memoirs and Russian sources, that there was an additional element to the friendship. Rumours survive in the records of the Preobrazhensky chancellery (where the perpetrators were tortured) that Peter and Menshikov 'lived in sin'. More specifically, a merchant Gavrila Nikitin was arrested in August 1698 for blurting out while drunk that Peter took Menshikov to his bed 'like a whore'. . . ." (Peter the Great: A Biography: 37)

Prince Menshikov's personal & family background.

" . . . Peter's pupils . . . were men of extraordinary energy, enlightened enough to perfectly understand the real needs of their country, and well aware that a moment's hesitation on their part would mean the subversion of Peter's system and their own ruin. Chief among them stood Alexander Danilovich Menshikov, whom Peter had literally plucked from the gutter to set (sit?) among princes. In his earlier years Menshikov had plied the modest trade of an itinerant pieman in the streets of Moscow, subsequently entering the service of Francois Lefort, the young Tsar's early companion and mentor, at whose house Peter first saw the lively young lacquey and appropriated him. The intelligence with which Alexander Danilovich grasped the leading ideas of the Tsar's reforms, and the cheerful alacrity with which he was ready to break with all the old Russian habits and customs, to please his master, soon made him indispensable to Peter, and henceforth they became inseparable. Menshikov accompanied the Tsar abroad, worked by his side in the dockyards of Amsterdam, studied Dutch and German beneath his very eyes, and plunged with equal enthusiasm into the multitudinous labours and the monstrous orgies of the most exacting masters. Honours and riches were heaped upon 'little Alex' by 'old Peter,' and at the end of the Tsar's regin Menshikov was that monarch's mightiest satrap, a Prince of the Holy Roman Empire as well as of the orthodox Russian Empire, and indisputably one of the wealthiest men in Europe. . . ." (The Daughter of Peter the Great: 2)

" . . . Although Peter and Aleksandr often competed with each other to catch the attention of your, pretty daughters of aristocrats, historians even in Peter's times wondered whether Menshikov and the Tsar had a romantic relationship themselves. One described their relations as 'more love than friendship.' and the two would often sulk and fight, sometimes literally, with several accounts of Peter punching Menshikov until he bled. Menshikov was known in the court as the only man who could soften the Tsar's violent temper (often alcohol-induced), and the relationship between the two never appears to have flagged, right up to Peter's death." (Russiapedia)

Menshikov's other lovers were:
1. Natalia of Russia.
2. Yekaterina I of Russia.

" . . . On tiring of his first wife, Evdokia Lopukhina, Peter had immured her in a convent near Staraya Ladoga. His second wife, Catherine, of peasant stock and had, before becoming Peter's mistress, been the mistress of one of his most influential courtiers, Prince Alexander Menshikov. . . Peter Menshikov, erstwhile lover of Peter's widow, had no intention of relinquishing the power he had enjoyed during Peter's reign and realised that the best way of maintaining it was to secure the throne for his former mistress, who had been elevated to the status of Empress by Peter in 1724. And so, with his help and that of the Guards regiments who supported him, the illiterate former servant became Catherine I, Empress of Russia in her own right. Functioning mainly as a figurehead, she died in 1727 after a reign of only two years. . . ." (Catherine the Great: Love, Sex and Power)

Anna Mons
Anna Mons (1672-1714)
Lover in 1692-1670.

Also known as:
Anna-Margreta von Monson

Daughter of: Johann Georg Mons, a German wine merchant.

1691: Anna's first encounter with the Tsar Peter.
" . . . Before long, Peter's eye fell on a particular one of these young women. She was a flaxen-haired German girl named Anna Mons, the daughter of a Westphalian wine merchant. Her reputation was blemished; she had already been conquered by Lefort. Alexander Gordon, the general's son, described her as 'exceedingly beautiful' and when Peter revealed his interest in her blond hair, bold laugh and flashing eyes, Lefort readily ceded his conquest to the Tsar. The ease-mannered beauty was exactly what Peter wanted". She could match him drink and joke for joke. Anna Mons became his mistress." (Peter the Great)

" . . . In October 1691 Peter attended a party in the Foreign Quarter at the home of the tavern keeper Johann Georg Mons, which is probably when he first met his future mistress Anna, Johann's daughter. . . ." (Peter the Great: A Biography: 30)

" . . . Within two years after the wedding [to Evdokia Lopukhina]. Peter had found more interesting female company in the person of Anna Mons, the beautiful and intelligent daughter of a foreign wine-merchant of the German Quarter of Moscow. . . ." (Women in Russian History: 127)

Affair's effect on spouse, family & society.
" . . . The Danish commercial agent Georg Grund recounts an interesting tale, not found in any other source, about a blazing row which erupted after Peter tried to appease his wife with gifts of trinkets bought from merchants in the Foreign Quarter, after he had just spent the night there with his mistress Anna Mons. Evdokia flung them to the floor and trampled on them, cursing 'that German whore'. Peter thereupon vowed to have nothing more to do with his wife. After his return to Moscow in August 1698 (when he immediately visited Anna) Peter tried to persuade Evdokia to retire voluntarily, but the 'pious tsaritsa' turned out to have a will of her own. She refused and so was unceremoniously dispatched to the Intercession convent in Suzdal', where she lived under armed guard. In May 1699 Peter sent an agent to Suzdal' to oversee a ceremony in which Evdokia was forced to take the veil under the name of Elena. So secret and irregular was this ritual that no long afterwards Evdokia abandoned her nun's habit and resumed a secular life, entertaining visitors, travelling around the district in some style and take a young army officer as a lover. . . ." (Peter the Great: A Biography: 56)

Affair's benefits to Anna.
"There was little substance behind Anna's laughter, and her fondness for Peter was powerfully stimulated by her ambition. She used her favors to obtain his favors, and Peter showered her with gems, a country palace and an estate. Blinded to protocol, he appeared with her in the company of Russian boyars and foreign diplomats. Naturally, Anna began to hope for more. She knew that Peter could not bear sight of his wife, and with the passage of time she grew to believe that she might one day replace the Tsaritsa on the throne. Peter thought of it, but saw no need for marriage. The liaison was enough; as it was, it lasted twelve years." (Peter the Great)

Affair's end & aftermath.
" . . . Kayserling reported that he had received 'the most complete satisfaction,' and in 1711 married Miss Mons, and died on his wedding journey to Prussia. With the exception of the incident just recounted, Anna Mons disappears from Peter's life after 1704, and while preparing for a second marriage---this time with a Swedish captain, a prisoner of war---she died in the foreign suburb of Moscow in 1714." (Peter the Great, Emperor of Russia: 330)

Anna Mons's other lover:
Franz Lefort
Franz Lefort  (1655-1699).

Advisor, military commander, diplomat & confidante to Tsar Peter the Great

General Admiral, Russian Navy
Major General 1639

a.k.a. the First Russian Admiral.

Son of: Jacques Lefort, Swiss merchant.

Lefort's physical appearance & personal qualities: " . . . Franz was a tall, handsome, and physically strong youth, and his character combined a sharp wit with a dash of bravery and zeal. It was armed with these qualities that Lefort left for Holland in 1674 to pursue his dream of serving in the army, gaining renown and seeing the world. . . ." (Foreigners in Russia: Franz Lefort @Russiapedia)
Avdotya Chernysheva

Avdotya Chernysheva

Lover in 1708-1725.

Russian aristocrat.

Lady-in-waiting of Empress Anna of Russia in 1730

Also known as:

Avdotia Rzevskaya
Avdotya Ivanovna Chernysheva.

Daughter of: Prince Ivan Ivanovitj Rzyevskiy & Daria Gavrilovna.

Wife of: Prince Grigorij Petrovitch Chernyshev (1672–1745), Senator & Governor of Moscow, mar 1710. 

"The relationship to Peter continued on and off from 1708 until 1725. In 1717, she was involved in the fall of her rival Mary Hamilton (lady in waiting). It is rumored that Peter died of syphilis after having been infected by Chernysheva, but there is nothing to indicate that she was herself ill. She was the lady in waiting of Empress Anna of Russia in 1730–1745." (Wikipedia)

Anonymous Elżbieta Sieniawska as Minerva.png
Elzbieta Sieniawska
4) Elzbieta Sieniawska (1669-1729)
Polish noble lady & patron of the arts

Also known as:

Elzbieta Helena Lubomirska
Elzbieta Helena Sieniawska
Princess-Marshal Elizabeth Lubomirska

Daughter of Prince Stanislaw Herakliusz Lubomirski, Court and Grand Marshal & Zofia Opalinska.

Adam Mikolaj Sieniawska
Wife of Adam Mikolaj Sieniawski (1666-1726)
Polish aristocrat & military leader
Grand Hetman of the Crown
married in 1687

"The Princess-Marshal Elizabeth Lubomirska was the daughter of the Princess Sophia Czartoryska (the lady of the barrels of old) and inherited no small share of her mother's enormous fortune. 'Aspasia,' as the King jocosely called her, aspired to be the political oracle of 'The Family.' She had great force of character and considerable ability, but her extreme vindictiveness always got better of her judgment. Thus instead of keeping 'The Family' united and consequently formidable, as heretofore, she eventually broke it u altogether by alienating both her husband and her brother from her cousin, the King, whom she detested. As, however, the King had a far sounder judgment and a far clearer intellect that any of his relations, except her own brother, the Primate, the consequences of the Princess Elizabeth's determined opposition to everything he did or meant to do were most disastrous to herself, her family and her country. (: 98-99)

Princess Elzbieta's other lovers were

Aleksander Benedykt Sobieski
1) Aleksander Benedykt Sobieski.
Polish prince, aristocrat, diplomat writer & scholar

Francis II Rakoczi
Prince of Transylvania
2) Ferenc II Rakoczi of Transylvania (1676-1735)

3) Pyotr I of Russia.

"And yet a more unexpected figure now appears in that strange throng---a chaste and respected friend. Yes, even that delicate flower bloomed in the miry slough! The woman who played this part, was the most seductive of all human creatures---a well-born Pole---Slav by her birth, Latin by her education. I have already described Peter as spending long hours in the Gardens of Jaworow in the company of Elizabeth Sieniawska. They built a boat together, rowed on the water, and talked endlessly. . . ." (Peter the Great: 254)
Stanislaw Jan Jablonowski
4) Stanislaw Jan Jablonowski.
"...Relations between Elzbieta and her husband, from the beginning of 1687, abounded in conflicts and tensions of a financial nature. Elzbieta protected her property and income from her husband's interference; she wanted to be financially independent... She entered scandalous liaisons, first with Jan Stanislaw Jablonowski, the Great Hetman's son, and later with Prince Aleksander Sobieski, the king's son. . . ." (Women in Early MOdern Polish Society, Against the European Background: 25)
Maria Cantemir
5) Maria Cantemir (1700-1754)
Lover in 1720-1725.

Romanian aristocrat and royal mistress

Lady-in-waiting to Princess Natalia 1728

Lady-in-waiting to Empress Anna Ivanovna 1730.
a.k.a. Maria Kantemir.

Daughter of: Prince Dimitrie Kantemir & Cassandra Cantacuzene.

"By 1722 the Moldavian hospodar had reached the pinnacle of his influence in Russia. That his daughter Maria, who was the tsar's mistress, had become pregnant was a great asset to Cantemir. Jacques de Campredon, the French ambassador to Russia, informed Louis XV the 'Empress Catherine . . . fears the tsar's inclination for the prince of Moldavia's daughter. Her father is clever. If she [Cantemir's daughter] should bear a son, the tsar, at the insistence of the prince of Moldavia, could repudiate his wife in order to marry this favourite mistress, who could give him a male heir to the throne. This fear is not without basis . . . I myself have had occasion to observe the influence that the prince of Moldavia enjoys with the tsar.' . . . In the midst of the campaign disturbing news arrived from Astrakhan, where the tsar's entourage had been left. Maria Cantemir had given birth to a stillborn child. Peter was deeply disappointed, and the entire Cantemir family fell into disgrace. To make matters worse, Dimitrie Cantemir was struck by a sudden illness. Under the sircumstances, he decided to leave the army to recuperate on his estate in Ukraine. He died there on 21 August 1723." (Domination of East Europe: 192)

Maria Andreyevna Rumyantsev
6) Maria Andreyevna Rumyantsev (1699-1788)
Russian courtier & royal mistress
Lady-in-waiting to Empress Elizabeth

Also known as:
Maria Andreevna Rumyatsev
Maria Andreyevna Rumyantseva
Maria Matveeva
Maria Matveyev
Mariya Andreevna Rumyantseva.

Daughter of: Andrey Matveyev, Russian privy councillor & ambassador to The Hague, & Anna Stepanovna Anichkow

Wife of: Alexander Ivanovich Rumyatsev married in 1720.

Fluent in French, a skillful dancer, beautiful and lively she attracted the attention of Peter I. Peter was severely jealous, reportedly threatened her with corporal punishment if she had another lover, placed her first among his mistresses and is said to have loved her until his death. She married 10 July 1720 Alexander Rumyantsev, and the couple were granted valuable gifts from the monarch. In 1725 her husband was in Constantinople and then to the Persian frontier to the disengagement, but Mary remained in Moscow and gave birth to a fourth child, a son, baptized in honor of Tsar Peter Alexandrovich. Grand Duke Nikolai Mikhailovich reported that the boy's father was not her spouse, but Tsar Peter himself was." (Wikipedia)

Mary Hamilton
7) Mary Hamilton(1684-1719)
Lover in 1715?
Maid of honour to Catherine I of Russia 1713.

Also known as:
Maria Danilovna Gamentova (by the Russians).

Daughter of: William Hamilton & Evdokiya Grigorievna Hamilton.

Wife of: Artyomon Sergeyevich Matveyev (d.1682)

"As chroniclers of that time noted, Peter couldn’t help but notice the young and beautiful Mary and “saw some features in her that provoked lust in him.” In other words, Mary became Peter’s mistress – back then saying “no” to a tsar was hardly an option." (Russia Beyond)

"One of the clan, Yevdokia Grigorevna Hamilton, was the wife of the famous Artyomon Sergeyevich Matveyev, and tutor to tsaritsa Natalya Naryshkina. Matveyev was killed in May 1682 by rebellious musketeers (the streltsy) because of his loyalty to the heir, the future Peter the Great. So, with Peter's ascension, the Hamilton's star began to rise. Some of them, like Maria Danilovna, made a career at court. Yekaterina Alexeyevna (later Catherine I), then still the tsar's unwed wife, who had already given him still-unrecognized daughters, took Maria into her suite, making her a lady-in-waiting. Both women shared a love for luxury, a passion for clothing and for the latest French fashion, and both also caught Peter's experienced eyes." (Questia)

"Mary Hamilton was a Scottish lady-in-waiting to the Russian Empress Catherine I. She was a member of a Scottish Hamilton family who emigrated to Russia sometime in the sixteenth century, during the reign of Ivan the Terrible. It is believed that she was the daughter of a William Hamilton. Mary became a lady-in-waiting to Catherine I in 1713, and she attracted a lot of attention around the royal Russian court due to her beauty and love life, and it wasn’t long before she became the mistress of Peter the Great. But the Tsar wasn’t her only lover, she was also having an affair with Ivan Mikhailovich Orlov, an aide-de-camp to Tsar Peter. However, Orlov had another mistress, and when Mary found out, she tried to win him back by giving Orlov gifts which she had stolen from Catherine." (Scot Clans)

"In the autumn of 1718, Peter launched an investigation into one of Catherine's maids-of-honour who was his ex-mistress: Mary Hamilton, descendant of Scottish royalists. 'Much addicted to gallantry,' she managed to become pregnant three times by her lover Ivan Orlov, one of Peter's adjutants who, summoned urgently by the tsar, was so terrified that he fell to his knees and accidentally blurted out a confession of his affair with Mary---and ho she had aborted three babies. In the debauched round of court promiscuity, her lover was also sleeping with Peter's mistress Avdotia Rzevskaya. Mary tried to win Orlov back by stealing Catherine's jewellery and giving it to him. Fearing her infidelity to the tsar would be exposed and she too would be tortured, Avdotia accused Mary of claiming that Catherine lightened her skin using beeswax. In this bonfire of mistresses, Catherine furiously searched Mary's room and found her jewels, and Peter recalled that a dead baby had been found near the palace. Hamilton was arrested, tortured in front of Peter, and confessed to killing three babies. Peter had her sentenced to death. Two tsarina's, Catherine and Praskovia, begged for mercy. He refused to 'be either Saul or Ahab nor violate divine law by excess if kindness.' On 14 March 1719, Mary appeared gorgeous on the scaffold in a white silk dress with black ribbons, but she expected a pardon, particularly when Peter mounted the gibbet. He kissed her but then said quietly: 'I can't violate the law to save your life. Endure your punishment courageously and address your prayers to God with a heart full of faith.' She fainted, and he nodded to the executioner, who brought down his sword. Peter lifted up the beautiful head and began to lecture the crowd on anatomy, pointing out the sliced vertebrae, open windpipe and dripping arteries, before kissing the bloody lips and dropping the head. He crossed himself and strode off. Peter, that connoisseur of decapitation who had found the beheading of his musketeers so curious, had the head embalmed and placed in his Cabinet of Curiosities, where an English visitor inspecting it 'in a crystal vessel' noted that 'The face is the most beautifulest my eyes ever beheld.'" (The Romanovs: 1613-1918: 127)

Mary Hamilton's other lover was:

Ivan Mikhailovich Orlov.
"After things almost ended with Peter, Mary fell in love with his aide-de-camp Ivan Orlov, but their relationship was doomed from the very beginning. An abusive drinker, he often beat her. As Mary would later confess, she started “stealing from her Majesty the Empress – different things and gold coins” to give to Orlov as presents." (Russia Beyond)

"Over the years Mary became pregnant on at least three occasions, and had two abortions – one in 1715, apparently by consuming constipation medicine. However, she did have a secret birth two years later in 1717, but afterwards killed the baby by drowning it. That same year her lover Orlov was questioned over some missing documents, and during the interrogation he confessed to having had an affair with Mary, and claimed that she had an abortion." (Scot Clans)

8) Varvara Arseniev.

9) Yekaterina I of Russia.

Lover in 1703.

a.k.a. Catherine Skavronskaya, Catherine Alekseyevna.

"In 1703 Peter became involved with Marta, a woman from Livland who had been captured after the storming of Marienburg, the mistress of Field Marshal B.P. Sheremetev, who yielded her to Menshikov, who in turn gave her to Peter. Marta, known after he baptism [into Orthodoxy] as Ekaterina Alekseevna (Catherine), won Peter's heart and became essential to him. Although they had eleven children, only two daughters, Anna and Elizabeth, survived. (Anna wa given in marriage to the duke of Holstein, and her son, Peter's grandson, became emperor as Peter III, Elizabeth usurped the throne in 1741 with assistance from the Guards). In 1711, before the campaign on the Pruth, Peter publicly revealed that Catherine was his wife, and in 1712, they were married in church." (The Emperors and Empresses of Russia)

"Catherine, whom Peter obviously intended as his successor (why else would he have crowned her?), was discovered to be romantically involved with her chamberlain, William Mons, the younger brother of Anna Mons. Peter undoubtedly found this a severe blow, although he himself had not maintained fidelity during his marriage, he could not excuse his wife's infidelity, especially because she was newly crowned. Mons was executed for bribe-taking in 1724, in dealing with the problem in this way Catherine's name was not mentioned. By then Peter was already seriously ill, and on 28 January 1725 he died in agony from uremia, not having managed to name his heir (male or female). His last 'testament,' published later, was a forgery." (The Emperors and Empresses of Russia)

"When Peter met Catherine in the autumn of 1703, she was a member of Menshikov's household with a status which...must have been clear to him. She was important enough to have access to the Tsar and to speak to him, although he was thirty-one and she was only nineteen, and Peter admired her. . . ." (Peter the Great: His Life and World: 373)

Steps to regularize the relationship of a strange couple.

Catherine Skovronskaya, though coarse and ignorant, was an uncommonly shrewd and sensible woman, with a magnificent physique, an imperturbable good-temper, and an absolute indifference to the hardships of a roving life, just the sort of wife, in fact, for a rough and ready peripatetic Russian soldier like 'Peter the Bombardier.' Her moral influence over him was extraordinary. She was the only person who had the skill and courage to soothe him in the fits of maniacal fury to which he was always subject. The first step towards regulating the relations of this strange couple was Martha's reception into the Orthodox Church, when she was rechristened Catherine Aleksyeevna. In 1710 she received the title of Gosudaruinya, only given to sovereign Princesses, and in 1711 she was publicly married to Peter. She bore him eleven children in all, of whom Anne, born in 1706, and Elizabeth, born in 1709, alone survived her." (Slavonic Europe: 330)

Peter the Great's wife's lover.
Stepan Glebov (d.1718).

"Following the breakdown of their marriage, Peter decided to rid himself of Eudokia. He banished her to the Convent of the Intercession in Suzdal on 23 Septeymber, 1698. The following year, he sent Semyon Yazkov to the convent to inform Eudokia that she was to join the sisterhood as Sister Helen. In 1709, Peter's former wife began a nine-year love affair with Captain Stepan Glebov. This came to light in 1718, when the tsar was investigating the flight abroad of their son, Tsarevich Alexei. Both were harshly punished. Stepan Glebov was impaled, while Eudokia was tortured and moved to the Convent of the Dormition in Staraya (Old) Ladoga." (Royal Russia)

"...After eighteen years in the convent, Eudoxia, over forty years old...after braving several Russian winters in a spartan convent cell, fell in love with an army captain by the name of Stepan Glebov. He took pity on her and brought her furs to make her cell a little warmer. Eudoxia...became Glebov's lover. They made no attempt to conceal their affair in the convent and Eudoxia bribed the other nuns to make themselves scarce while they copulated in her cell. Glebov thought that sleeping with an ex-czarina...would not do his career prospects any harm at all. He couldn't have been more horribly mistaken. Peter the Great heard of the affair... He announced that...she had never legally ceased to e is wife, and her boyfriend was therefore guilty of adultery... [T]he next day at precisely 3 P. M. a wooden stake was driven into Glebov's rectum. He lingered on in agony until the evening of the following day. Eudoxia...was ordered to be whipped by months in from of the other nuns, then shipped off to an even more remote convent." (Royal Babylon: 22)

"In 1710, she began a love affair with Major Stepan Glebov, who was assigned for a time to Suzdal'. Later on, the authorities intercepted Dunia's love-letters, full of flaming passion and melancholy, which testify to her energetic, ardent, lively, and sensitive nature... The affair did not last long: Glebov left Suzdal' and forgot Dunia. However, in 1718, when Peter learned of this secret love, he punished them most cruelly: following excruciating torture at the tsar's decree, Glebov was impaled. The former tsaritsa was transferred to a monastic cell in Ladoga, a small town near Lake Ladoga." (Five Empresses: 14)
"In 1697, just before Peter embarked on his European tour, he asked his Naryshkin relatives to persuade Eudoxia to enter a monastery, which she refused. However, soon after Peter returned from his European tour in 1698, he decided to end his unhappy marriage, by divorcing Eudoxia and forcing her to enter the intercession convent of Suzdal. Eudoxia who entered the convent, managed to live there as a lay person and even find a lover by the name of Stepan Glebov, who was executed by quartering when the tsar was informed of the relationship. Eudoxia and her son and heir apparent Tsarevich Alexi Petrovich, soon became the center of opposition to Peter's reforms, around whom disgruntled Church officials rallied. Tsar Peter soon brutally suppresses this opposition, putting his son and former wife on trial, executing all bishops who supported them, and transferring Eudoxia to another convent in Ladoga. Tsarevich Alexi Petrovich suspected of plotting to overthrow his father, confessed on torturing, and was convicted and sentenced to be executed. But, Peter was hesitant in authorizing his execution, and the tsarevich died in prison, probably of injuries suffered during his torture." (Internet Stones)