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Grigori Efimiovich Rasputin was despite his behavior a holy man whose abilities allowed him to influence the Russian Empress Alexandra which ultimately lead to the downfall of the Romanov Dynasty At 115 this afternoon Alix gave birth to a son There are no words to thank God properly for the comfort he has sent us -Nicholas IIs diary August 12 1904 It was a warm August day when Alexandras labor began By mid-afternoon she had given birth to an apparently perfect eight pound boy Alexei the only heir to the Russian throne It wasnt until six weeks later that the infant began to bleed from the navel The parents told themselves that it was nothing more than a too-sharp cut to the umbilical cord at birth but as each tiny bruise developed into a dark blue swelling it was clear that their son had hemophilia a genetic disease of the blood affecting only males although transmitted by their mothers and fatal in every case The symptoms were all too well known several of Alexandras nephews suffered from it More than forty doctors were brought to the Russian court but it would be years before an effective treatment for hemophilia would be developed All that could be offered was minimal comfort during Alexseis attacks It was in Autumn 1905 that Grigori Rasputin first met with the Russian Imperial family The exact date of his first healing is not known but is said that the ailing Alexei bubbled with laughter at the sight of Rasputin Rasputin laughed too according to an account He laid his hand on the boys leg and the bleeding stopped at once Theres a good boy Rasputin said Youll be all right But only God can tell what will happen tomorrow By 1907 Rasputin was considered by the Empress to be her sons only hope Grigori Efimiovich Rasputin was born in
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