Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin (Russian: Григо́рий Ефи́мович Распу́тин) (January 22 [O.S. January 10] 1869 – December 29 [O.S. December 16] 1916) was a Russian mystic who is perceived as having influenced the later days of the Russian Tsar Nicholas II, his wife the Tsaritsa Alexandra, and their only son the Tsarevich Alexei. Rasputin had often been called the "Mad Monk", while others considered him a "strannik" (or religious pilgrim) and even a starets (ста́рец, "elder", a title usually reserved for monk-confessors), believing him to be a psychic and faith healer.
It has been argued that Rasputin helped to discredit the tsarist government, leading to the fall of the Romanov dynasty, in 1917. Contemporary opinions saw Rasputin variously as a saintly mystic, visionary, healer and prophet and, on the other side of the coin, as a debauched religious charlatan. There has been much uncertainty over Rasputin's life and influence, for accounts of his life have often been based on dubious memoirs, hearsay, and legend.
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