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Collections of the Russian museum


The first numismatic material was collected in the Alexander III Memorial Department during the first years of the museum’s existence. Initially it contained coins minted during the reign of the emperor Alexander III, and also commemorative medals issued during his reign.


In 1909 the director of the Russian Museum Grand Duke Georgy Mikhailovich bequeathed his numismatic collection to the museum, which was then considered one of the most important in Russia after that of the Hermitage and the collection of Count I.I. Tolstoy. It had been developed over more than three decades by well-known experts of the time, Ch. Gil and M. Demmeni. Unfortunately, being evacuated during the First World War, the Duke’s collection was subsequently lost in the years after the Revolution and the museum collection had to be renewed, virtually from scratch. Its basis was a small part of the Count I.I. Tolstoy’s collection that had been received as gift in 1918 and also private numismatic collections and individual items. In addition to the replenishment of lost examples of coins and medals, new categories of numismatic items were added to the collection, including paper money, medals, lapel and official badges and pins, stamps and tokens.

As a result of the work on the systematization of the museum collection by the famous specialist in Russian numismatics and medal art, Alexander Voitov (1893-1966) in the 1930s, a separate numismatic department was established in the museum. From 1955 it was headed by A. Voitov and in the following years received tens of thousands of new exhibits. The numismatic collection was replenished with copies of coins, medals and paper money, as well as emblems, badges and other products of the Leningrad and Moscow Mint. The museum both acquired and received as gifts private collections and individual items, as well as pieces transferred from other museums.

Today the numismatics collection of the State Russian Museum includes more than 72,000 items; these are coins, commemorative medals, paper money, bonds, awards (medals), emblems, badges, medals, seals, wax casts and so on. The collection of the numismatics department provides a complete picture of the history of money and medal art in Russia.

Breastplate «Great Chef»

Breastplate «Great Chef».

Medal is established in 1943.

Breastplate «Excellence in the Red Army»

Breastplate «Excellence in the Red Army».

Medal is established in 1939.

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