The Record for the Most Babies Born to One Woman is 69

Daven Hiskey 61
Today I found out that the record for most babies born to one woman is 69.  Yes, you read that correctly 69!

Who was this amazing woman with apparently a womb of steel and a vagina her husband just couldn’t say no too?  We don’t really know. (anti-climactic I know)  Her husband is the one whose name has lived on because of her crazy baby making skills. (Feminists of the world unite!)  She was the first wife of Feodor Vassilyev, a peasant from Shuya, Russia who lived from 1707-1782.   We can only speculate how many fire safety ordinances he violated by housing all his progeny in his little peasant sized hovel.  Presumably, at some point they also had to choose to feed on the weak ones in order to provide food for the strong.

How did she manage this feat given most women only have about 30-ish years of baby making ability?  She gave birth to sixteen pairs of twins, seven sets of triplets, and four sets of quadruplets; so basically a veritable baby making factory who scoffs at “one at a timing” it.  Amazingly, 67 of her children survived infancy, which was a remarkable rate for the day.  No word on whether either of her breasts could say the same.

Now, let’s just take a step back here.  She was the “first wife” of Feodor Vassilyev.  Seeming to imply he married again. (Polygamy was not generally practiced at that time in Russia; so we can assume he was only married to one lady at a time.)  So this guy goes out; shuns wearing tighty whities (presumably); gets married; invests all his money in a baby naming book; then apparently takes every second his wife isn’t pregnant as a personal affront to his manhood; then she presumably kills herself (I mean really, wouldn’t you?) and he then somehow manages to swindle another woman into wanting to be his wife and take on raising his clan?  Can you imagine remembering all 67 of their names?  Especially considering that woman would also need to deal with the fact that many of them came in identical sets.  I don’t know about you, but my parents have to go through every one of my siblings names before they can correctly say mine when they want to get my attention.  That must have taken forever in that family.

Then, of course, after old Feodor Vassilyev swindles her into becoming his second wife, he presumably decided to use her vagina as a clown car too. *shudders*

The really amazing thing of it is that with the 67 surviving kids, if each of them had 2 kids (a low number for back then, but we’ll be conservative here) and each of their kids had 2 kids and so on, and we assume about 25-ish years between generations.  Then this couple currently has around 70,000 descendants!

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  1. emjo January 11, 2010 at 8:32 pm - Reply

    This article is poorly written. That is all.

    • Mina August 21, 2013 at 1:58 pm - Reply

      I agree! The fourth paragraph is truly a mess.

  2. j4tam January 11, 2010 at 8:37 pm - Reply

    The above comment is poorly written, lacks examples, and isn’t constructive. That is all.

  3. David January 12, 2010 at 10:31 am - Reply

    I don’t really see how that comment is poorly written, here are the examples you wanted though:

    “Feminists of the world unit!” Should be unite.
    “That must have taken forever in that family.” Shouldn’t be in it’s own sentence it should be after a comma or a semi-colon.

    Also the attempts at humour aren’t funny. You should have stuck to just telling us the facts because it’s a pretty interesting article really.

    That is all.

    • Nick February 11, 2013 at 12:50 pm - Reply

      You need to work on your own grammar sunshine. The use of It’s is incorrect as it is an abbreviation of the aforementioned. Drop the apostrophe for possession.

      • Loud Sigh May 2, 2013 at 1:53 am - Reply

        Possession wouldn’t make sense in the context it was written it. Do try to make sure you can read before you start criticizing other people’s grammar.

        • Justin. May 3, 2013 at 11:21 am - Reply

          When you get confused on which ‘its’ to use, here’s an easy way to figure it out.

          Does ‘it is’ make sense in the sentence? Then use ‘its’! The word “it’s” doesn’t signify possession, it signifies the contraction ‘it is’.

        • Dunmer HD July 22, 2013 at 7:30 am - Reply

          @Loud Sigh:
          OF COURSE possession makes sense in this context.
          As Nick said before, ‘it’s’ is totally wrong because it’s an abbreviation of ‘it is’ . Now, replace ‘it’s’ with ‘it is’ in the sentence. Does it make sense? NO. Congratulations.
          Yours, an eight-grade student from germany.

  4. Name January 14, 2010 at 5:39 pm - Reply

    Something tells me Russian families tend to be large, considering my great grandfather immigrated from Russia and was one of 29 children. His father had two wives- one that gave birth to 15 children, the other to 14 children. I believe his family had a farm or such.

    • Incredulous May 3, 2013 at 5:30 am - Reply

      Come on. I mean, you’re poor and there’s no tv. What else are you going to do for entertainment?

  5. seo January 15, 2010 at 4:15 am - Reply

    Good Read. I’ll look forward to your next piece

  6. seo January 17, 2010 at 10:18 am - Reply

    Great Read. I’ll look forward to your next article

  7. dentist tooth January 21, 2010 at 12:45 pm - Reply

    I think my daughter is doing something similar. Good luck to you.

  8. Penetrator! February 2, 2010 at 5:42 am - Reply

    I think your mom is doing something similar.

  9. Bugsy November 28, 2011 at 8:57 pm - Reply

    “Also the attempts at humour aren’t funny.”

    Maybe to you. You must remember, though: humor is subjective. What isn’t funny to you may be funny to others, and vice versa.
    Do not act like your comedy tastes are fact, because they’re not; they’re opinion.

  10. Jacob January 15, 2012 at 12:39 pm - Reply

    That is 2 meny Kids how whould you take care of All OF THEM

  11. laina January 18, 2012 at 5:22 pm - Reply

    well…i started reading the comments above…but lost taste after comment three so anyway…

    i liked it. it was informative and didn’t put me to sleep at the same time! :D (hates reading)

    i found out about this miracle woman in biology class so i was like…hmm….why not use my pc time wisely?

    anyway…who cares what the control freaks above think? (no offense to anyone) i suck at writing too!

    =] ‘that is all’

  12. Omit February 27, 2012 at 9:52 pm - Reply

    i don’t like the insults slamming the authors method of writing, if she wants to put things in her articles to try and keep the reader interested, even if the article is already interesting. i found the author and the article to be very good.

  13. Binx April 12, 2012 at 11:48 am - Reply

    What on Earth8o
    People commenting on her way of writing?
    Honestly , the point of this was to learn about the facts and whoever it was, you are correct , it is an opinion and if you did not enjoy it, go read somewhere else.
    I enjoyed this article (:
    The woman clearly LOVED children:O
    And the man clearly LOVED providing them:P

  14. al May 16, 2012 at 5:07 pm - Reply

    Russians lived in hovels, hurr durr

    There’s only one nationality the author could be, and it’s not one apparently given to things like actual education about… stuff…

    I’m Matt Damon

    • Daven Hiskey
      Daven May 17, 2012 at 1:53 am - Reply

      @Al: Poor peasant people in the 18th century tended to live in structures that by modern standards we would call hovels. I’m not sure why you’re taking offense to this.

  15. wow June 7, 2012 at 10:15 am - Reply

    i cant beliv how meny , thay each probobly have never goten the love and nerchering that children need :( i feel bad

  16. wow June 7, 2012 at 10:16 am - Reply

    i bet thay must have had ALOT of help :l

  17. wow June 7, 2012 at 10:16 am - Reply

    and also not have much monny :o

  18. Alex August 20, 2012 at 11:08 pm - Reply

    It is sad that i know that picture is the duggars from 17, 18, and 19 kids and counting.

  19. Alex August 20, 2012 at 11:09 pm - Reply

    Also her name was Valentina Vassilyev

  20. jennifer September 15, 2012 at 10:04 am - Reply

    alex – um i think most people living the modern world with a TV knows that family in the pic is the duggars….

  21. Mandy October 16, 2012 at 6:41 pm - Reply

    So the husband lived to be 75. And had 69 children and time to marry again? These numbers do not make sense. Lets assume he had the occasional twin or triplet, that would make maybe 50-59 years of baby making. Where is the time to remarry? Maybe he remarried and died within the same year?interesting story, but very unbelievable

    • Daven Hiskey
      Daven Hiskey October 16, 2012 at 11:47 pm - Reply

      @Mandy: Did you even read the article?

  22. daddi's_gurl October 24, 2012 at 9:26 am - Reply

    This is a very interesting story and from what I read it is well written and infomative. Thanks for this article and hope to see more in the future.

  23. daddi's_gurl October 24, 2012 at 9:39 am - Reply

    Mandy, seriously, you must be a blonde. Numbers and words confuse you, huh? I mean it says in the story that there were 16 pairs of twins, 7 sets of triplets, and 4 sets of quadruplets. Just in case this is to much for you to comprehend, twins means having 2 babies in one birth, triplets means having 3 babies in one birth, and the biggest word, quadruplets, means having 4 babies in one birth. As for the story it may sound unbelievable, but it is documented in the book of world records, so do some research, (if you can without forgetting what you’re trying to find out), before you comment and make yourself look like an uneducated person typing because she can(barely).

    • mike September 23, 2013 at 2:29 pm - Reply

      i second your responce

  24. Callipygian November 11, 2012 at 11:21 am - Reply

    Interesting article and sorry to be that guy again, but there are quite a few linguistic boo-boo’s in there that I’d like to correct.

    1. “Yes, you read that correctly 69!” should have a “:” after “correctly”;
    2. All the (….) thoughts should be put before the period of the regular sentence and should not have a period themselves
    3. “her husband just couldn’t say no too?”, change “too” to “to”
    4. “peasant sized hovel” = “peasant-size hovel”
    5. “She was the “first wife” of Feodor Vassilyev, seeming to imply he married again.”
    6. “So this guy goes out”, everything after that should be separated by comma’s, not semi-colons.
    7. “Especially considering that this woman”
    8. “and we assume about 25-ish years between generations, then this couple currently has around 70,000 descendants!”

  25. LeyTR November 17, 2012 at 10:49 pm - Reply

    Wow… People trying to teach when they clearly didn’t pay much attention in English class…. Callipygian, if you would have lifted your head to listen to your teacher at least once other than thinking you’re much smarter than everyone else in the class, you would know that substituting a semicolon for a comma is acceptable so there aren’t a bunch of commas in a passage, but you know that don’t you? Wait… no you don’t. Also, this is just an online article, you don’t need to swoop in thinking you can sit and pointlessly correct the author just so you have something to do. If you seriously think trolling the internet for mistakes is fun, then you have some serious problems.

    • Stephanie December 11, 2012 at 9:53 pm - Reply

      Touch! AND, well said!

      • Stephanie December 11, 2012 at 9:54 pm - Reply

        *Touche, darn autocorrect!

  26. Stephanie December 11, 2012 at 9:51 pm - Reply

    Why are people correcting his grammar? That is rude and immature. Just read it for the interest in it! If you wish to correct grammar, then become a Lanuage Arts teacher! People make typos, etc! I found the article funny and interesting! Great job Mr. Daven Hiskey! This new “Grammar Nazi” fad is getting very old, quickly! People seem to think it cool to grade articles, thinking that makes them smarts, when in all actuality just reading and comprehending what the article is about, is what makes you smart! Really people, high school standardized test are mostly reading an article and answering comprehensive questions on it! This guy is doing better than half of you are, writing this article, when you “Grammer Nazis” are probably sitting in your bed on your laptop at your mother’s house still! Again, good job Mr. Daven! And if I made any typos, or mistakes in this, quite frankly, I don’t care!

  27. Nolberto Madera February 15, 2013 at 4:20 pm - Reply

    wooaahhhh!!!!! that seems impossible

  28. HELIA March 12, 2013 at 12:45 pm - Reply

    just 2 words to explain this WOW OMG

  29. Yer Pal April 24, 2013 at 3:49 am - Reply

    Russians in the 1700’s! The great exagerrators!

  30. Lauren August 17, 2013 at 7:27 pm - Reply

    “The really amazing thing of it is that with the 67 surviving kids, if each of them had 2 kids (a low number for back then, but we’ll be conservative here)”

    How do you know for sure? How do you know the decenents wouldn’t be liberal too? Don’t get me wrong I would like to have kids too but not 69.

    • Shaina September 17, 2013 at 10:49 am - Reply

      Oh, I sincerely hope this comment was a joke. Haha!

  31. LOVEPAREEK August 22, 2013 at 6:20 am - Reply


    • A Disgruntled Brit July 24, 2014 at 3:33 am - Reply


  32. Rebecca December 27, 2014 at 11:17 am - Reply

    I highly doubt the multiples were identical. Fraternal multiples are generic while identical multiples os just a random thing that happens. For that random thing to happen so many times to one person, is highly unlikely. Therefore, her multiples were probably, mostly, if not all, fraternal.

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