Decree concerning the Curatorship of the Imperial Throne of All the Russias in the Event of the Death of the Head of the Russian Imperial House, H.I.H. Grand Duke Wladimir Kirillovich, 10/23 December 1969.

The office of Head of the IMPERIAL House of Russia and the position of legal Heir of the rights and duties of the Emperors of All the Russias, with which I have been charged by the Lord God by virtue of the supreme right of primogeniture, obliges Me to maintain the State Fundamental Laws of the Russian Empire on Succession to the Throne and the Statute on the IMPERIAL Family, which are inseparable from the aforesaid laws.

By virtue of these laws, I understand an essential condition contained in the law to be that the issue of a marriage contracted between a person of the IMPERIAL Family and a person of a status not corresponding in equality of birth do not inherit the rights belonging to members of the IMPERIAL Family, one of which is the right of succession to the Throne.

Such is the position of the descendants of the Princes of the IMPERIAL Blood now living, as well as the issue of morganatic (i.e., unequal) marriages contracted by members of the IMPERIAL House now deceased.

It is hard to imagine that any of the Princes of the Blood IMPERIAL now living could, in view of their age, now enter into a new marriage equal in status of birth, or, moreover, have descendants from such new unions who could then possess the right of succession to the Throne.

In view of this fact, and in accordance with the State Fundamental Laws of the Russian Empire, succession to the Throne, after the demise of all male members of the IMPERIAL House, necessarily passes to the female issue of our family.

In accordance with these same laws, my firstborn daughter, Her IMPERIAL Highness Grand Duchess Maria Wladimirovna, is at present senior in succession to the Throne in the female issue and at the same time the only one capable of having issue enjoying the right to succession.

Aware of the heavy burden and duty conferred by the Will of Almighty God upon my young daughter, the first of which is to perpetuate the IMPERIAL House and thereby ensure uninterrupted succession to the Throne, I and my Consort, Her IMPERIAL Highness Grand Duchess Leonida Georgievna, raised Grand Duchess Maria Wladimirovna from Her early childhood in an awareness of the responsibility resting upon Her for the future of the Romanov Dynasty and to prepare Her for Her future service to Our Fatherland.

The irrevocable right which belongs to Her and the upbringing and education which She has been given provide the assurance that My daughter alone, Grand Duchess Maria Wladimirovna, can perform the necessary duty that rests upon Her and successfully discharge the lofty obligations of Heiress to Her Crown-Bearing Ancestors.

Wherefore, while in no way infringing on the order of succession to the Throne provided by the State Fundamental Laws of the Russian Empire, I declare that, in the event of My demise, My daughter Grand Duchess Maria Wladimirovna, shall become Curatrix of the IMPERIAL Throne of Russia, with all the rights and functions connected with that office, for the service of Russia and for the protection of Our Dynasty from any encroachments from any quarter whatsoever.

After the demise of the last of the male representative of the Dynasty, when the right of succession to the Throne will have inevitably passed to the female issue, then Grand Duchess Maria Wladimirovna, Curatrix of the Throne, shall become Head of the Imperial House of Romanov.

The establishment of the Curatorship of the Throne is promulgated in accordance with, in the example of, and with the prerogatives accruing to, the establishment of a Regency, which is provided for in the Fundamental Laws, with a Council attached to the Curatorship, the composition of which will be announced at the proper time.

I and the Grand Duchess desire that all Russian people should know that Our daughter, Grand Duchess Maria Wladimirovna, is in full agreement with these decisions and is prepared at any time to dedicate Her life and devote all Her strength to the service of the Fatherland if She is called upon so to do.

I bequeath to My Daughter’s sacred custody the spiritual treasure handed over to Her by Us, Her parents. May She, to the end of Her days, never for a moment forget Her solemn duty to maintain the Orthodox Faith, to serve Russia and her peoples, and to be responsible for the present and the future of our Dynasty.

(The original is signed in His Imperial Highness’s own hand:)



Issued in Madrid, 23 December 1969

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