The Princess Olga from Chuvashia: Imposture as a Religious Practice

The purpose of this paper is to introduce new data on the phenomenon of imposture in Chuvashia in 1920s-1930s. The paper draws upon the evidences form the local NKVD archives. Aleksandra Saratova, who claimed to be Olga, a daughter of the last Russian Tsar Nicolas II, was arrested in Chuvashia; later she and a few other people were executed. The investigation proved her close connections with the movement of True Orthodox Christians — istinnopravoslavnykh khristian — an underground religious network strongly opposed to collectivization and the Soviet power in general.