Russia witnessed its first royal wedding on its soil since tsarist times more than a century ago on Friday when a descendant of Russia's former imperial family, Grand Duke George Mikhailovich Romanov, tied the knot with his Italian bride, Romanovna Bettarini.
The wedding took place at St. Isaac's Cathedral in Russia's former imperial capital St Petersburg.
Groom's mother, Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia - the self-proclaimed heir to Russia's imperial throne and other minor European royals including hundreds of guests attended the wedding conducted by Russian Orthodox clergy.
George Mikhailovich visited Russia for the first time in 1992 and moved to Moscow in 2019, where he works on a number of charity projects.
George Mikhailovich's great-grandfather, Grand Duke Kirill Vladimirovich, fled Russia during the 1917 Bolshevik revolution, escaping first to Finland and later relocating with his family to Western Europe.
Russia's last tsar, Nicholas II, his wife and five children were murdered by a revolutionary firing squad in July, 1918, in the cellar of a merchant's house in Yekaterinburg, a city 1,450 km (900 miles) east of Moscow.
Russia's Orthodox Church in 2000 canonised Nicholas II, who had been portrayed as a weak leader by Soviet authorities.
(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)