Nadezhda Alliluyeva Dies

It was customary to bury not only rulers, but their wives, too, at the Novodevichy cemetery.

At this point we would like to recall the wife of Joseph Stalin, Nadezhda Alliluyeva. This woman had a tragic life, and took with her to her grave the secret of the fatal gunshot that cut short her life. The shot had spawned many an ominous legend. According to the official version, it had been a suicide. Outstanding sculptor Ivan Shadr made a portrait of Nadezhda Alliluyeva out of white Italian marble. However, since that particular species of marble is not weather-resistant, the original found its way to the Tretyakov Art Gallery, while a copy was commissioned for the grave. the early 1930s Nadezhda seems to have been deeply disturbed by what was happening around her, and by the brutalization caused by collectivization. In November of 1932 she committed suicide, and though there were rumors that Stalin killed her, his grief was obvious. His daughter, and his own subsequent behavior suggest he never got over this episode, and that he blamed some of the people in his close circle of friends, particularly Molotov's wife Polina, Nadezhda's dear friend.