Paper, handwritten, 4 ff, 33 x 22,4 cm, Paris, Archives Nationales, Central Register, ET/XXXIX/335 (RS/293)
5 August 1727
Prince Kurakin’s first wish, when he received the two notaries at the Châtelet de Paris in the room of his hotel on rue de l’Université, “overlooking the courtyard and the garden”, was to be transported after his death to Moscow, to be buried in the Chudov monastery, located within the Kremlin.
It was his son, Alexander, who was naturally entrusted with the vast majority of the paternal inheritance. First, everything that maintained an aristocratic lifestyle worthy of its rank as an ambassador: furniture, of course, but also silverware, horses and carriages.
But most of his legacy lay in the capital he had invested with foreign banks: in Holland, Vienna, Saxony, all these places also recalling his career as a diplomat, which he also tried to pass on to his son.
The prince’s career is exceptional. He studied in Venice at a very young age, participated in the campaigns of Pierre Le Grand and obtained his first diplomatic mission at the age of 30 with the Holy See. His successes led him to abandon the career of arms for that of diplomacy and he had one mission after another with the support of the tsar of whom he was also the brother-in-law: first Hanover, then Holland and England, before his appointment as extraordinary and plenipotentiary ambassador in Paris in 1724.
His descendants also had to show a great sense of negotiation and among them his great-grandson Alexander Borisovich Kurakin is especially remembered, as ambassador to Vienna and Paris and an important negotiator in the drafting of the Tilsit Treaty in 1807.
Source: 122 Minutes d’histoire, Acte des notaires de Paris, XVIème-XXème siècles, Somogy Editions d’Art / Archives nationales, Chambre des notaires de Paris, 2012