09 November 2012

Grand Duchess Maria of Russia visits School No. 1 in the city of Nazran.

Grand Duchess Maria of Russia visits School No. 1 in the city of Nazran.

As part of her official visit to the Republic of Ingushetia, Grand Duchess Maria of Russia paid a visit to School No. 1 in the city of Nazran. As a sign of their deep respect for the Grand Duchess, the young students of the school greeted Her Imperial Highness with bread and salt, and with a large bouquet of flowers. The Grand Duchess and other distinguished guests were then given a tour of the facility. The Grand Duchess’s guide for the tour was the eleventh-grader, Khava Malsagova, who described the history of the school and the particular features of the school’s curriculum.

Grand Duchess Maria of Russia visited a dance class, the art studio, the music room, and examined an exhibit of creative works by the students. The Grand Duchess expressed a keen interest in curriculum and in the methods used to provide the young students with moral and spiritual education. While visiting a computer class, the Head of the Russian Imperial House remarked that “not all schools, not even those in Western countries, can boast of having such fully-equipped computer labs.”

Her Imperial Highness also spoke with some of the youngest students at the school. Students in the second grade class asked the Grand Duchess Maria of Russia about her experience in school. The Grand Duchess admitted that she, like so many students, began with rather average grades. “The only classes I got ‘A’s’ in were art and music. Gradually, though, I began to earn very good grades in my other classes, as well. One must understand that one can’t learn all things at once. Everything that you are learning here will be your greatest riches, which no one can ever take from you,” the Grand Duchess Maria of Russia said.

At the school, the Head of the Russian Imperial House met Ahmed Sergeevich Bazorkin, the great-grandson of Sergei Fedorovich Bazorkin, who was the second Ingush to be granted hereditary noble status (in 1886), a physics and mathematics teacher at the school. Ahmed Bazorkin recounted for the Grand Duchess how the first Ingush to receive noble status was Khovdi Akhushkov, and their third was Sergei Bazorkin’s brother, Banukho (in 1888), who was the first general in the Russian Imperial Army of Ingush nationiality. Expressing her appreciation for Ahmed Sergeevich’s knowledge of Russian and Ingush history, Grand Duchess Maria of Russia said, “I am very pleased to meet the descendants of these great men!”

Later, in the school auditorium, which was decorated with the state symbols of the Imperial House, there was a formal meeting of the students of the school with the Grand Duchess. The speeches presented to the distinguished guests were delivered in various languages of the world.

In addition, Her Imperial Highness kindly agreed to answer questions from the students. During her conversation with the students, the Grand Duchess pointed out that she and the members of her family had refused to accept citizenship of other countries. “Despite the difficulties this has posed when getting travel visas, we have not accepted citizenship for patriotic reasons, and up until the 1990s, we were able to travel with a refugee passport,” she said.

In answer to the question, “What’s it like to be the Head of the Russian Imperial House”, the Grand Duchess acknowledged that “I have always had the conviction that my life does not belong to me alone, but belongs to my country and to my people, and that I must offer all possible support to those in need. I was taught this very early in my childhood.”

As a sign of respect and gratitude for coming to their school, a group of students presented Grand Duchess Maria of Russia with a portfolio of their creative works entitled “The Russian Imperial House,” which had been prepared especially for Her Imperial Highness’s visit. Artwork by the young students Amina Galaeva and Zalina Zurabova was also presented to the Grand Duchess. The principal of the school, Marem Galaeva, added that “they, on their own initiative, had been working for two whole months to be have these works ready by the time of your visit.”

The Grand Duchess left a message in the guest book, thanking the students and the school’s teachers and administrators for their gifts, and at that time remarked: “We bear an enormous responsibility. Tomorrow, you must become the strength of your great homeland. Be worthy of your ancestors. Remember, that knowledge is a kind of wealth that lasts a lifetime. Thank you for this very touching reception. I genuinely love this wonderful country. May God bless you all!”

Issued by the Press Service of the President of the Republic of Ingushetia.

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