learned institutions established to collect, preserve, study, and present to the public objects of material and spiritual culture that reflect the development of human society. Historical museums may be of a general nature, devoted to the history of a country, republic, or city, or they may be devoted to special historical disciplines (such as archaeological and ethnographic museums) or to independent branches of historical science (such as museums of military history).
Objects of historical significance have been collected unsys-tematically since ancient times in various parts of the world. The ancient civilizations that existed for thousands of years in North Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas created historical and artistic objects of lasting significance. The palaces and castles of kings and other rulers, temple complexes, the sites of religious rites and sports contests, and the burial vaults of kings and notables are not merely historical monuments of great architectural value; they gradually became repositories for treasures and for artifacts fashioned by skilled craftsmen, such as valuable weapons and clothing, jewelry, and costly vessels. Among the earliest such collections are the Temple Library in the city of Assur (11th century B.C.), the Palace of Cnossus on Crete (16th century B.C.), the library of the Palace of Nineveh (seventh century B.C.), and the Palace of the Wangs and the archive of the Yin oracles in China (13th—12th centuries B.C.). Although many of these buildings and ancient collections have been destroyed, a significant number have been partially preserved; many relics have been unearthed, restored, and placed in historical collections and museums. Important collections of inscriptions, paintings, bas-reliefs, and high reliefs were accumulated in Confucianist temples, Christian churches, Buddhist cave temples (Ellora and Ajanta in India and Yiin Kang and Lung Men in China) and in the castles of feudal lords. Medieval architecture has been preserved in cities such as Ch’ang-an in China (the capital of the T’ang dynasty), Nara in Japan, Constantinople, Ctesiphon, Baghdad, Bukhara, Cordoba, and Pagan.
Pre-Revolutionary Russia and the Soviet Union. The chronicles of Kievan Rus’ allude to the preservation of historical relics “for the sake of memory” in the cathedrals of Novgorod, Kiev, and Vladimir, in monastic vestries, and in princes’ depositories. A repository for valuables, weapons, household articles, and ambassadors’ gifts to Russian tsars, called the Armory, was founded in the 16th century. In the course of the 17th and early 18th centuries the Armory gradually took on the functions of a museum. Ladles and table settings belonging to Ivan HI the Great, to Tsaritsa Anastasia Romanovna, the wife of Ivan IV the Terrible, and to Boris Godunov were preserved in the vestry of the Pskovskii Pecherskii Monastery. There were artistic works and historical objects in the Kremlin cathedrals and the patriarch’s residence in Moscow. The first private collections of historical monuments, assembled by Boris Godunov, F. S. Miloslavskii, F. A. Golovin, Ia. V. Bruce, A. N. Demidov, Peter I, and D. M. Golitsyn, arose in Russia during the 17th and the early 18th centuries. These collections prepared the way for the first Russian public museum, the Kunstkamera, founded in 1714 and opened in 1719. By the 18th century historical objects were not only being collected and preserved but also used in scientific studies by such outstanding scholars as V. N. Tatishchev, M. V. Lomonosov, S. P. Krasheninnikov, and G. F. Miller. The first laws regulating the preservation of monuments were also enacted in the early 18th century.
Military campaigns and the successes of Russian armies stimulated interest in objects related to military history, which were collected and preserved from the early 18th century. Historical objects were collected in the Hermitage. The Cathedral Museum was founded in Riga in 1773, and in 1783 the Riga town council acquired Doctor N. Himzelis’ collection, which became part of the Cathedral Museum in 1891. The advances of historical science in the first half of the 19th century were reflected in the development of historical museums. A number of historical museums were established in the early 19th century, including the Peter the Great Museum in the village of Ves’ki, PereiaslavP District (1803), where a small boat belonging to Peter I, the “grandfather of the Russian navy,” was preserved; the Museum of the Chief Commissariat Administration (1811, St. Petersburg); the Asiatic Museum (1818, St. Petersburg); and the Odessa Museum of Antiquity (1825). A museum based on the Rumiantsev collection was founded in St. Petersburg in 1831, containing literary texts of historical significance and ethnological material. Collections were assembled at Moscow University (1812), by the Riga Society of History and Antiquities of the Baltic Provinces (1834), at the University of Kiev (1835), in the museum of the Estonian Literary Society in Revel (now Tallinn, 1842), and in the museum in Ekaterinoslav (1849). The Tbilisi Museum (now the S. Dzhanashia State Museum of Georgia) was begun in 1852 and the Museum of Antiquities in Vilnius in 1856.
The number of historical museums increased considerably in the second half of the 19th century, and at the same time the museums became more scientific. Historical museums were generally founded by the more than 120 historical societies in different parts of the country, by scholarly archival commissions, by statistical committees, and by universities. Museums were established in Vladimir (1862), Iaroslavl’ (1864), Novgorod (1865), Pskov (1872), Chernigov (1876), Tambov (1879), Rostov Velikii (1883), Riazan’ (1884), Saratov (1887), Novocherkassk (1891), Kostroma (1891), Riga (1891), Simbirsk (1895), and Vladikavkaz (1897). With the passage of time, some of these museums expanded their scope and became comprehensive museums of local lore.
Among the museums founded during this period were the first national historical museums, such as those of Latvia (Riga, 1869) and of Uzbekistan (The Turkestan Museum, Tashkent, 1876). An important event was the establishment of the Russian Historical Museum in Moscow (founded, 1872; opened, 1883), which later became the largest historical museum of the peoples of the USSR—the State Historical Museum.
Under the influence of historical science, museum exhibits began to be organized by periods (generally reigns) and by type of material. The principle of systematic display was the highest achievement of the bourgeois period, but this principle was not applied in all historical museums. Historical museums placed greater emphasis on ancient times, and brought their collections and expositions only up to the 17th and 18th centuries. The ruling circles sought to use historical museums for monarchist propaganda. Church-archaeological archives and museums, which collected material on the history of the church, also became widespread. In addition to pseudoscientific material, these museums preserved valuable sources for the history of art (chiefly applied art), manuscripts and old books, and articles from the daily life of the distant past. There were about 60 historical museums in Russia in 1912.
After the Great October Socialist Revolution of 1917 the reactionary church museums were abolished, and the museums of military units of the tsarist army voluntarily closed. However, all the collections from the former museums were registered, preserved, and transferred to state museums. In science and culture, it was the policy of the Soviet authorities to develop a network of historical museums, which were recognized to be an important factor in the education and training of the people.
Historical museums and museums of the Revolution were opened everywhere. The Museum of the Revolution in Petrograd was founded in 1919; the Historical-revolutionary Museum of Red Moscow was founded in 1922 and renamed the Museum of the Revolution in 1924. The Museum of the Red Army in Moscow (1919) and in Petrograd (1920) gathered material on the armed defense of the socialist state. Museums of the Revolution were also established in provincial towns. Many different types of historical museums were organized in the first years of Soviet power, including, in addition to the historical-revolutionary museums, historical museums of national regions, historical and cultural open-air museums, museums of archaeology and history, museums devoted to objects from everyday life, and museums of art history.
Among the historical museums that were founded at this time were those of Azerbaijan (Baku, 1921), Armenia (Yerevan, 1921), Kirghizia (Frunze, 1926), and Turkmenia (Ashkhabad, 1927) and the regional Kalmyk Historical-Ethnographic Museum (Elista, 1931). Historical-ethnographic museums and museums devoted to objects from everyday life were opened in Pechery (1921), Saratov (the Volgar’ museum, 1924), Ostankino (1917), Oranienbaum (1917), Arkhangel’skoe (1918), Gatchina (1918), New Jerusalem (1920), the Monastery of St. Sergius and the Holy Trinity (1920), Volokolamsk (1921), and Alupka and Evpatoriia (1921). Historical and cultural open-air museums include the Mud’iug Island Museum (Arkhangelsk Province, 1918) and the Kiev Pecherskii Museum (Kiev Caves Museum, 1926). Museums of art history and of archaeology and history were opened in Kashin (1918), Riazan (1918), Morshansk (1918), Torzhok (1918), Kashira (1919), Rybinsk (1919), and Kaliazin (1920).
A well-developed system of historical museums was created in all the Union republics in the period of the construction of a socialist society in the USSR. During the Great Patriotic War of 1941–45, despite the evacuation of museum collections, museums in temporarily occupied and front-line areas suffered great losses. Buildings were ruined and collections destroyed and plundered. Even during the war, however, restoration and the creation of new historical museums was undertaken.
The system of historical museums with specialized collections continued to grow in the postwar period. Many new museums were founded, including the Latvian Museum of the Revolution (Riga, 1940), the Martsial’nye Vody museum in Karelia (1946), the Historical Museum in Pereiaslav-Khmel’nitskii (1954), the Museum of Municipal History and Fishing in Ventspils (1954), the Municipal Museum in Tartu (1955), the Historical Museum of the Byelorussian SSR (Minsk, 1956), the Museum of the Revolution (Yerevan, 1957), the Kizhi historical-architectural open-air museum (1965), the Municipal Museum in Narva (1965), the Museum of Atheism (Baku, 1970), the N. A. Shchors Museum (Shchors, 1970), and the Historical-revolutionary Museum in Mary (1970).
Memorial museums occupy an important place, especially the V. I. Lenin museums of party history and museums devoted to the events and heroes of the Civil War and the Great Patriotic War. There were 400 historical museums in the country in 1970, including the military-historical museums of military units and memorial museums. There are also historical sections in the more than 400 museums of local lore. In addition, thousands of people’s museums, run on a public basis, were established between 1950 and 1970 at enterprises and schools and in towns and villages throughout the country. Among these are museums devoted to military and labor glory, to the history of party and Komsomol organizations, and to the history of towns, villages, plants, factories, kolkhozes, sovkhozes, and schools.
Soviet historical museums contain material from all periods but devote special attention to the era of the construction of communism. An achievement of Soviet historical museums is the inclusion within their research and acquisitions of the most recent periods, down to the present.
Soviet historical museums conduct large-scale research and educational and training work, disseminating historical knowledge and the achievements of historical science. The work of museums consists chiefly in offering tours of permanent expositions, temporary exhibitions, and unexhibited collections. Museums organize classes at the museums, people’s universities, courses within the system of political education, and meetings at historical monuments with veterans of the revolutionary movement, labor, and the war. They also organize clubs for young people and collectors.
A. M. RAZGON
Foreign countries. The conscious collecting of the historical and artistic objects that later became the nucleus of famous museums began in Western Europe during the Renaissance, with the development of science. Francis I had a cabinet of curiosities at Fontainebleau, Kunstkammeras were established in the Tirol and Munich, and collections were assembled at universities. The merchant and banker G. Manetti began to collect classical inscriptions in the 15th century, marking the beginning of epigraphy. The first private collections were created at this time.
The period of the great geographic discoveries and the subsequent new stage in the world-historical development of mankind, beginning with the development of capitalism and the formation of worldwide relations, stimulated interest both in collecting native antiquities, manuscripts, and books and in plundering and transporting foreign treasures. The Ashmolean Museum was founded at Oxford in 1683, and the first large national museum in Great Britain, the British Museum, was created in 1753 out of a number of private collections. The collection of Du Somme-rard formed the basis of the Cluny historical museum in Paris in 1844, and the palace of Versailles became the national historical museum of France in 1837. A considerable part of the foreign collections of the major European museums, for example, those of the British Museum, were assembled in the period of colonial conquest by plundering the historical riches of enslaved countries.
In most cases the museums that arose in Western Europe in the 19th and early 20th centuries consisted of archaeological collections and artistic monuments. In Italy many historical relics of the classical world and the Renaissance were gathered in such art museums as the Lateran Museum in Rome and the Palace of the Doges in Venice. The Central Museum of the Risorgimento was founded in Rome in 1906. In Spain and Portugal objects of historical significance were assembled in art museums and palace museums, such as the Prado museum in Madrid and the Escorial. The Old Museum was founded in Berlin in 1825, followed by the New Museum in 1855; the German National Museum was established in Nuremberg in 1852. The National Museum was founded in Copenhagen in 1807, and historical museums arose in Ljubljana (1821), Zagreb (1880), and Belgrade (1901). In the countries of the East national museums and palace and temple museums were organized, and collections of paintings and historical relics were assembled. These efforts were hindered, however, by the colonial or semicolonial position of these countries. The Museum of Egyptian Antiquities, now the Egyptian National Museum, was founded in Cairo in the mid-19th century. In India, the Indian Museum in Calcutta was founded in 1814, the Government Museum in Madras in 1851, and the Central Museum in Nagpur in 1863.
The first historical museum in the USA was organized by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia in 1834. The United States National Museum in Washington was founded in 1875. The oldest museum in Latin America, founded in 1700, is located in Guadalajara, Mexico.
The growth of the national liberation struggle and the outbreak of bourgeois revolutions in a number of countries in Asia in the 20th century hastened the creation of historical museums in those countries. The Kukung history and art museum was founded in the former Imperial Palace in Peking in 1914. The National Museum in Damascus was founded in 1919 and the Iraq Museum in Baghdad in 1923. After the Revolution led by Kemal Ataturk in Turkey, the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Art in Istanbul and the Ethnographic Museum in Ankara were both founded in 1923, followed by the Topkapi Palace Museum in 1924. The Iran Museum of Antiquities was founded in Tehran in 1938.
After World War II (1939–45) a number of museums arose in other socialist countries to commemorate the heroic struggle of the peoples against fascism and colonialism and the most important events of the national movement and socialist construction. New museums in Warsaw included the Museum of the History of the Polish revolutionary Movement, the V. I. Lenin Museum, and the Museum of the History of Warsaw. The museums that were founded in Czechoslovakia were the museums of the history of the workers’ movement in Prague and Bratislava, the Jan Žižka Museum of the Hussite Movement in Tábor, and the Slovak National Museum in Martin, the old center of the Slovak national liberation movement. Other museums in the socialist countries include the museums of the history of the workers’ movement and of the history of the Rumanian Workers’ Party in Bucharest; the Museum of the revolutionary Movement and the Museum of Bulgarian-Soviet Friendship in Sofia; the Museum of the History of the Yugoslav War of National Liberation in Belgrade; and the historical museums in Ljubljana and Zagreb.
In the socialist countries of the East the number of historical museums has also increased rapidly. In the Mongolian People’s Republic the revolutionary Museum was established in Ulan Bator. In the Democratic Republic of Vietnam the Revolution Museum and the Historical Museum were opened in Hanoi. Several new historical museums, in Pyongyang, Kaesong, and other cities, were established in the Korean Democratic People’s Republic. The Central Historical Museum and the revolutionary Museum were opened in Peking in 1959–60. The young states of Asia and Africa that have won their national independence are actively collecting monuments of their national history and culture.
G. A. NOVITSKII and R. V. VIATKIN
Archaeological museums collect, preserve, study, and present to the public ancient and medieval objects of material culture and art.
Pre-Revolutionary Russia and the Soviet Union. The first depositories of archaeological antiquities in Russia were the Armory, the Kunstkamera, the Hermitage, and several private collections. Specialized archaeological museums date from the early 19th century, reflecting the development of archaeology. Accidental findings and objects excavated in southern Russia formed the basis of these collections. The Nikolaev Chernomorskoe Depo collection, with finds from the ruins of Kerch’, Cher-sonesus, and other sites, was established in 1806. The Feodosiia Museum of Antiquities was founded in 1811, the Odessa Museum of Antiquities in 1825, and the Kerch’ Museum of Antiquities in 1826. Artifacts obtained from excavations at Chersonesus (from 1827) were later incorporated into the Chersonesus Museum, founded in the second half of the 19th century. From the 1830’s systematic excavations in the Prichernomor’e led to the discovery of remarkable archaeological monuments, which were acquired by the Hermitage and the Russian Historical Museum. The Museum of the Odessa Society of History and Antiquities, the largest museum in southern Russia, was founded in 1840, absorbing the collections of the Nikolaev Chernomorskoe Depo in the 1840’s and those of the Odessa Museum of Antiquities in 1858. Organization of the Museum of the Russian Archaeological Society in St. Petersburg began in 1846.
In the second half of the 19th century, a growing interest in the antiquities of the peoples of Russia led to the establishment of new archaeological museums, such as the Museum of the Moscow Archaeological Society (1864), the Museum of the Archaeological Commission (1860’s), and the Museum of the Kazan Society of History, Archaelogy, and Ethnology (1878). Specialized educational museums appeared in the 19th and early 20th centuries, including the Mints Cabinet (founded in the 18th century), the Cabinet of Antiquities at Moscow University, the Museum of Classical Antiquities at the University of Tartu (1803), the Museum of Antiquities at the University of Kiev (1835), and the Museum of the Archaeological Institute in Moscow (1911). A large part of the archaeological findings was concentrated in the many archaeological sections of general historical museums, in local museums (Tver’, Nizhny Novgorod, Kazan, Pskov, Arkhangel’sk, Riga, Kiev, Tbilisi, Minusinsk, Semipalatinsk), and in a number of private collections, such as those of the Uvarov and Stroganov families.
The growth of archaeological departments in museums of various types reflected the development of the science and the need for comprehensive investigation of historical sources. Archaeological museums were closely associated with scientific societies, and the most prominent Russian archaeologists, including I. E. Zabelin, D. N. Anuchin, V. I. Sizov, A. A. Spit-syn, N. I. Veselovskii, V. V. Khvoika, and B. V. Farmakovskii, worked in the museums.
After the establishment of Soviet power, archaeological research was organized by the Russian Academy of the History of Material Culture, established in 1919. Archaeological sections were set up in the more than 500 museums of history, military history, ethnology, and local lore that were opened in all the capitals of the Union republics, in krai and oblast centers, and in many other cities. Archaeological sections in museums in Siberia, the Caucasus, Middle Asia, the Ukraine, Byelorussia, and the Baltic region have been developing rapidly. During the Soviet period remarkable collections have been assembled in archaeological museums and the archaeological sections of other museums, portraying the history of the peoples of the Soviet Union from Paleolithic times to the Middle Ages. Archaeological museums conduct extensive research and educational work. Archaeological research is published in the Trudy and Uchenye zapiski of various museums.
Foreign countries. Archaeological objects, chiefly monuments of classical art, formed a part of museum collections as early as the Renaissance. Archaeological museums proper arose only in the 19th century, based on private, court, or church collections of antiquities. Such museums are found in almost all countries. In Florence the National Museum was founded in 1865 and the Archaeological Museum in 1870, both based on one of the oldest collections of art, the Uffizi Gallery, founded at the end of the 16th century. The Vatican museums in Rome, also incorporating private collections, developed in the 18th and 19th centuries. The largest archaeological collections in Italy are those in the Roman museums, including the Lateran Museum (ancient sculpture, 1844), the Roman National Museum (1889) in the ruins of the Baths of Diocletian (also known as the Terme Museum), the Conservatori Palace, the Capitoline Museum, the Luigi Pigorini National Museum of Prehistory and Ethnography (1875), and the Villa Giulia (1889). Objects from the excavations of Pompeii and Herculaneum are preserved in the National Museum in Naples, founded in 1738–48. Archaeological collections are also maintained in the Municipal Museum in Bologna (1881), the archaeological museums in Syracuse (1886) and Palermo, and the National Archaeological Museum in Cagliari (1806). The most important archaeological collections in Greece are those of the National Archaeological Museum in Athens (1874) and the Acropolis Museum (1878); there are also museums at Delphi (1903), Olympia, Corinth (1932), Khania (on Crete, 1951) and Rhodes (1940).
In France the richest collections of archaeological objects from Italy, Greece, Egypt, and the Near East are those of the Louvre (1793) and the National Museum of Antiquities (1862), both in Paris. There are large archaeological collections in the cabinet of medals at the National Library and the Guimet Museum, as well as in museums in St. Germain-en-Laye, Lille, Dijon, Marseille, Nimes, and Strasbourg. The largest archaeological collections in Great Britain are held in the division of antiquities of the British Museum (1753), the Victoria and Albert Museum in London (1852), and the Ashmolean Museum at Oxford (1683). There are large archaeological collections in the Federal Republic of Germany in Munich, Nuremberg, and Mainz, and rich archaeological collections are found in the museums of West Berlin. Other noteworthy European archaeological museums are the Swiss National Museum of Ethnology in Zurich (1890), the Swiss Museum in Basel (1892), the National Museum in Copenhagen (1807), and the National Archaeological Museum in Madrid (1867).
The largest archaeological collection in the USA is that of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (1870). There are important collections in the National Museum of Canada in Ottawa (1842), the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto (1912), the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City (1865), the Museum of Archaeology and History of Yucatán in Merida (1920, containing chiefly Mayan objects), and the Archaeological Museum of Teotihuacan (1922). There are rich archaeological collections in the archaeological museums of Istanbul (1869) and Ankara (1923) and in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo (1900) and the Greco-Roman Museum in Alexandria (1892). Other important collections may be found in the Archaeological Museum in Tehran (1936); in Iraqi museums in Baghdad (1923), Babylon (1949), and Samarra (1936); and, in India, in the Archaeological Museum of Mathura (1874), the Baroda Museum (1894), the National Museum of India in Delhi (1949), and the Victoria and Albert Museum in Bombay (1855).
Significant archaeological treasures are held by museums in the socialist countries, including, in Albania, the Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology in Tirana; in Bulgaria, the archaeological museums in Sofia (1878), Plovdiv (1882), and Varna (1945); in Hungary, the historical section of the National Museum in Budapest (1846) and the Historical Museum of Budapest (1886); and in the German Democratic Republic, the Berlin art museums (the Pergamon Museum, 1902, and the Bode Museum, 1904) and the museums of Dresden (1853) and Halle (1823). Important collections are in the Archaeological Museum in Warsaw (1928) and the Archaeological and Ethnological Museum in -Lodz (1956), in Poland; in the Historical Museum of Bucharest (1929) and the National Antiquities Museum in Bucharest (1864), in Rumania; in the National Museum in Prague (1818), the Moravian Museum in Brno (1818), and the Slovak National Museum in Bratislava (1893), in Czechoslovakia; in the National Museum in Belgrade (1844), the National Museum of Slovenia (Ljubljana, 1821), and the national museums of Zagreb (1846) and Split (1820), in Yugoslavia.
There are extremely valuable collections in Chinese museums—in the Kukung museum in the former Imperial Palace in Peking, in the National Museum in Nanking, in the Harbin Museum, in the Museum of Archaeology and Inscriptions in Sian, at the Sinanthropus site in Chouk’outien, near Peking, and in the Museum of the Panp’o Neolithic Settlement in Sian. The State Central Museum of the Mongolian People’s Republic in Ulan Bator, the museums of the Korean Democratic People’s Republic in Pyongyang and Kaesong, and the Historical Museum in Hanoi in the Democratic Republic of Vietnam are successfully building up their archaeological collections.
A. M. RAZGON and L. A. EL’NITSKII
Military history museums collect, preserve, study, and exhibit weapons, military materiel, banners, and relics and documents relating to military history. The various types of military history museums include those of a general character and those devoted to a branch of the military such as the artillery or the navy; there are also memorial museums, museums associated with monuments and fortresses, and museums of military units and schools. In addition, there are extensive military collections in some historical, local lore, national, and art museums.
Pre-Revolutionary Russia and the Soviet Union. The earliest weapons collections in Russia were those at the court of the Kievan princes. The Armory, one of the oldest depositories of weapons in Europe, was established in the first half of the 16th century, and the first exhibition of captured arms was organized in Moscow in 1560. The first military history museums in Russia were founded in the early 18th century. Between 1702 and 1725, Peter I promulgated several decrees concerning the collection and preservation of Russian and captured weapons and models of naval ships. These museums expanded considerably in the 19th century, assembling the material evidence of the victories of the Russian Army and Navy, of the deeds of outstanding military leaders, and of the work of engineers, inventors, and master craftsmen of weapons. Many progressive figures, scholars, and engineers took an active part in such collecting, including M. V. Lomonosov, N. A. Bestuzhev, A. A. Popov, G. I. Butakov, S. O. Makarov, and N. E. Brandenburg. Until the Great October Socialist Revolution, military history museums were mainly intended for a narrow circle of military specialists, and their presentation reflected the tsarist official military policy.
After the Great October Socialist Revolution, existing military history museums were preserved and reorganized and new museums were founded, whose exhibits immortalized the era of revolutionary transformations, the Civil War, and the history of the Red Army. The first Red Army museums were founded in Moscow in 1919 and in Petrograd in 1920. In 1944—45, during the Great Patriotic War, 11 military history museums were founded. As of 1971, there were 75 military history museums open to the general public, and more than 400 museums were maintained in military districts, in the navy, and in army units and military schools. These collections contain over 2 million items, including some 30,000 banners, more than 60,000 weapons and other pieces of military equipment, and many valuable battle paintings, photographs, and documents. The collections and exhibits of Soviet military history museums show the history of the heroic struggle of the peoples of the USSR for freedom and independence, the development of military science, equipment, and armaments, the victories of the Soviet armed forces during the Civil War and the Great Patriotic War, the leading role of the Communist Party and of V. I. Lenin in the creation and development of the armed forces of the USSR, and the military collaboration of Soviet soldiers with those of other socialist countries.
The largest museums of military history in the USSR include the Central Museum of the Armed Forces (Moscow), the Central Naval Museum (Leningrad), the Military History Museum of the Artillery and Engineer and Signal Corps (Leningrad, founded in 1756), the Military Medical Museum of the Ministry of Defense of the USSR (Leningrad, 1942), the Frunze Museum and Exhibition of the Central House of Aviation and Space Exploration (Moscow, 1927), and the naval museums of the Red Banner Black Sea Fleet (Sevastopol’, 1869), the Red Banner Pacific Ocean Fleet (Vladivostok, 1950), the Red Banner Northern Fleet (Murmansk, 1946), and the twice honored Red Banner Baltic Sea Fleet (Baltiisk, 1959).
Other major museums are the Museum of the Red Banner Kronstadt Fortress (Kronstadt, 1953), the Byelorussian Museum of the Great Patriotic War (Minsk), the State Museum of the History of the Battle of Poltava (Poltava, 1950), the Museum of the Defense of the Hero Fortress of Brest (Brest, 1956), the Museum of Defense (Volgograd, 1937), the Borodino Military History Museum (Borodino, 1903), and the Museum of the Battle of Kursk (Kursk, 1963). Memorial military history museums include the A. V. Suvorov Military History Museum (Leningrad, 1904), the A. V. Suvorov Historical Museum (Izmail, 1946), the M. V. Frunze Museum (Frunze, 1935), the V. I. Chapaev House and Museum (Pugachev, 1939), and the G. I. Kotovskii and S. Lazo Museum (Kishinev, 1948). Panorama and diorama museums of military history include The Battle of Borodino (Moscow), The Defense of Sevastopol’ (Sevastopol’), and The Storming of Sapun Mountain (near Sevastopol’).
Important collections of banners, weapons, and relics of battle glory are preserved in the State Hermitage Museum in Leningrad and in the State Historical Museum, the State Museum of the Revolution of the USSR, and the Armory in Moscow.
Foreign countries. The largest museums of military history in the other socialist countries are the Polish Army Museum (1920) in Warsaw; the Museum of the Czechoslovak Army (1954) and the Military Museum (1919) in Prague; the Museum of the National People’s Army of the German Democratic Republic in Potsdam; the Military History Museum in Budapest; the Central People’s Army Museum (1916) in Sofia and the Museum of Military History (1904–07) in Pleven; the Central Army Museum in Bucharest; and the Military Museum of the Yugoslav People’s Army (1878) in Belgrade.
There are large military history museums and collections in the capitalist countries. The National Museum in Washington (1937) and the Marine Corps museum in Quantico, Va., are the government depositories of military banners, regalia, and documents. Museums of military history in Great Britain include the Imperial War Museum (1917) and the Tower of London Armories in London, the National Army Museum in Camberley, Surrey (1960), and the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich (1934). Two large museums in Paris are the Museum of the Army in the Hotel des Invalides (1670) and the Museum of the Navy (1827). The most important military museums in Italy are the Museum of the Castel San Angelo (Rome, 1925), the Royal Armory (Turin 1837), the Naval Museum (Genoa), and the Armory of the Palace of the Doges (Venice). Other large museums in the capitalist countries include the Army Museum in Madrid (1804), the Military History Museum in Vienna (1891), the Royal Museum of the Army in Stockholm (1879), the Royal Danish Arsenal Museum in Copenhagen (1838), and the Museum of the Janissaries in Istanbul (1877).
E. I. VOSTOKOV
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