In the same text as contains this post’s title, General Lavr Kornilov wrote “People of Russia! Our great motherland is dying. The hour of her death is near.”1 The country he loved and had fought for much of his life, he believed, was in shambles. A man of law and order, by the time he led his attempted coup, Kornilov believed only a strong authoritarian figure could bring peace and discipline to the state.
“View of the Solovetskii Monastery from the Inn. Solovetskii Islands.” Link to photo
This photograph, taken by Russian photographer Sergei Prokudin-Gorskii in 1915, depicts the Solovetskii (also spelled Solovetsky) Monastery. Located in the Solovetsky archipelago (Solovki), the monastery harbors major Russian historical significance.
The first major expansion of the monastery occurred under the guidance of monk Philip Kolychev. From 1547 to 1566, Kolychev carried a series of construction projects and infrastructure improvements that solidified the monastery’s place as a fantastic feat of architecture. However, Kolychev’s political dissidence led to his execution at the hands of Ivan the Terrible – a fate which foreshadowed the monastery’s grim future.1