Very Rev Archimandrite
Nicholas Gibbes Home
Born Charles Sydney Gibbes in Rotherham in Yorkshire.
born 1876, was the son of John Gibbes, who was born in Towcester in 1841 (the son of a
glazier named John Gibbes), but brought up in Yorkshire
following the failure of his parents marriage.
Charles’s father became a bank manager, and sent his son to University College,
Aberystywth, and later to St John’s College, Cambridge,
from which he graduated in 1899. He was reported to be “A man of high
character, good sense and agreeable manners”.
He spent the
summer of 1901 with a family called Shidlovsky. He was taken on as tutor to two
boys, aged ten and four. After several days in St Petersburg, he travelled with the family
out to their country dacha. He was entranced by the novelty of Russian life.
Dividing his life thereafter between England
he was appointed English tutor to the Tsar's children in 1908. On March 2nd
1917, the Tsar abdicated, bringing to an end of 300 years of Romanov rule.
Following the execution of the Romanovs, Charles found himself alone in Siberia. He moved to Harbin
working for the Chinese Maritime Customs. In 1934 Gibbes finally decided to
become a member of the Russian Orthodox Church, and was ordained as a priest on
23 Dec 1934, taking the name Nicholas in honour of the Czar. He returned to the
in 1937, and died in 1963.