Princess Catherine Ivanovna of Russia

Princess Catherine Ivanovna
Marchesa Farace di Villaforesta
Born (1915-07-12)12 July 1915
Pavlovsk Palace, Saint Petersburg, Russian Empire
Died 14 July 2007(2007-07-14) (aged 92)
Montevideo, Uruguay
Spouse Ruggero Farace, Marchese Farace di Villaforesta
Issue Nobile Nicoletta Farace, Mrs. Grundland
Nobile Fiammetta Farace, Mrs. Zanelli
Giovanni Farace, Marchese Farace di Villaforesta
Full name
Yekaterina Ivanovna Romanova
House Holstein-Gottorp-Romanov
Father Prince John Constantinovich of Russia
Mother Princess Helen of Serbia

Princess Catherine Ivanovna of Russia (Russian: Княжна Екатери́на Иоа́нновна; 12 July 1915 – 14 July 2007) was a great-great-granddaughter of Tsar Nicholas I of Russia and a niece of King Alexander I of Yugoslavia. She was the last member of the Imperial Family to be born before the fall of the dynasty, and was ultimately to become the last surviving uncontested dynast of the Imperial House of Russia.


Born in Pavlovsk Palace, she was the second child of Prince John Konstantinovich of Russia and Princess Jelena of Serbia. After the Revolution, her father was arrested and deported from the capital and her mother followed her husband into exile. Catherine and her brother Vsevolod remained in the care of her grandmother, the Grand Duchess Elizaveta Mavriekievna of Russia. On 18 July 1918, their father Prince John was killed, and their mother Princess Jelena was arrested and spent several months in Soviet prisons. Grand Duchess Elizabeth was able to take Catherine and her brother to Sweden. Sometime later, they were reunited with their mother.

The family lived in Serbia, then moved to England. There, Catherine received an excellent education, although she never learned the Russian language because her mother, devastated by her husband's death, didn't want her children speaking that language in front of her.

From 1937 to 1945, Princess Catherine Ivanovna lived in Italy. During her stay there, she married the Italian diplomat Ruggero Farace, Marchese Farace di Villaforesta (4 August 1909 - 14 September 1970) in Rome, Italy on 15 September 1937; on occasion of her wedding, she renounced to her succession rights to the Russian throne. They had three children:[1][2]

In 1945, after the end of the World War II, Princess Catherine separated from her husband (although they never legally divorced) and moved with her children to South America. In later years, she lived in Montevideo, Uruguay, where she died two days after her 92nd birthday.[3]

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