Cardiff Theosophical Society

206 Newport Road,

Cardiff, Wales, UK, CF24 -1DL



Life of Peter Alexeyevich Von Hahn



Peter Alexeyevich von Hahn (1798 - 1873)

Member of the Russian nobility

Father of H P Blavatsky



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Early Life and Marriage


Son of Lieutenant-General Alexis Gustavovich von Hahn and Countess Elizabeth Maksimovna von Probsen. Father of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky

A captain of horse artillery, Peter Hahn, whose family came originally from the petty nobility of Mecklenburg, married, in 1830, the 16-year old Helene Fadeev. She was the daughter of Princess Helene Dolgoruki (1789-1860) and Andrei Mikhailovich Fadeev (1789-1867), Privy Councillor of the Caucasus, and half his age. Vera, a younger sister of Helene Fadeev, would marry Julius Witte and become the parents to Count Sergei Yulievich Witte.


Polish Campaign and Birth of Helena


Soon after the wedding, the young Captain received orders to join his regiment for service in the notably ruthless campaign to put down the Polish insurrection of 1831. The girl-wife returned to her parents in Ekaterinoslav in the heart of the Ukraine, and it was there that Helena was born on the night of August 12, 1831 (July 30, on the Russian calendar).


Military Life and Death of Wife


At the close of the Polish campaign, Madame Hahn and "Lolo" (her pet name for her daughter Helena), rejoined the Captain at the station in southern Russia where he was leading raids against the mountain tribes of the Caucasus. Captain Hahn had been educated as a member of the Imperial Cadet Corps, limited to the sons of the nobility. On his wife's death, at the age of 28, the Captain, realized that army camps were most unsuitable for little girls. And the two children were escorted back to their grandparents home.



Marriage and Escape of Helena


Colonel Hahn retired, sometime before 1848 and was living near Saint Petersburg when his daughter married Nikifor Blavatsky. This marriage lasted only three months, and Helena ran away, abandoning her husband. Her grandfather promptly shipped her off to her father, but she escaped with a boat captain, "leaving her father fuming on the docks of Odessa". She was not to contact her family for the next ten years. Her future discussions of these years are extremely confused and contradictory and even today have not been satisfactorily explained or researched.

Later Life


Shortly afterward, Col Hahn married again to Baroness von Lange and had a daughter Liza. The Baroness died a few years later. Col Hahn was living in 1858 in Saint Petersburg, where Helena's sister Vera was also living, when Helena again showed up. Her sister Vera lived in the small village of Rugodevo, which she had inherited from her late husband. According to reports, Col Hahn was at first aloof from Helena's alledged psychic powers, but later come to believe in them, from certain demonstrations. He died and is buried at Stavropol.



Wives and Children


With Helene Fadeyev


* Helena later Blavatsky, b 1831

* Sasha b 1832 d 1833

* Vera later Vera Zhelihovsky(1835-96)

* Leonid b 1840


With Baroness von Lange

·      Liza b 1850/2



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Cardiff Theosophical Society

206 Newport Road,

Cardiff, Wales, UK, CF24 -1DL



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