The Vorontsov family descends from the Viking, Semen
Afrikanovich, who after conducting raids alone the coast of Africa came to Russia in 1027.
Their direct ancestor is Fedor Vasilievich Voronetz (circa 1400), from whom their surname
is derived. From the 15th to the 17th centuries members of the family played a
distinguished role in Russian history as commanders in the army, officers of the Tsar's
household, courtiers, and boyars.
However, the family is best remembered for its influence on the development of Russian culture and history after the palace revolution of 1741. With the ascension of Empress Elisabeth to the throne, they were to serve as chancellors, viceroys, field marshals, senators, and ambassadors, among many other duties. Thus, in the 18th century Mikhail Illarionovich became chancellor and his niece, Ekaterina Romanovna Dashkova, born Vorontsova, was director of the Imperial Academy of Sciences as well as president and founder of the Russian Academy. Her brother, Alexander, was chancellor at the beginning of the 19th century and their nephew, Mikhail Semenovich, was later viceroy of the Caucuses.
Their descendent, Illarion Ivanovich Vorontsov-Dashkov, was also viceroy of the Caucuses at the beginning of the 20th century. But in 1919, after centuries of service to their country, they were forced to leave Russia forever.
Currently, there is not a single museum in Russia devoted to the family's past. Most often their memory is located today in the ruined houses, defiled gravesites, and remains of their personal belongings, "preserved" in archives scattered throughout Russia.
This site is devoted to the reconstruction and rehabilitation of their appropriated history - at least virtually.
It is educational, informational, and noncommercial.
We welcome all comments, additions, and corrections.
If you feel that any item found on this page does not constitute fair usage, please let us know.
& Mikhail Mikeshin,