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Pearls of Russia

Museums and memorial estates

Tikhvin Memorial Museum of History, Architecture and Art

The Tikhvin Memorial Museum of History, Architecture and Art located in two buildings of the Bolshoi Bogorodichno-Uspensky Monastery (Big Monastery of the Assumption of Our Lady) shares the site with the new-born monastery community.

The ancient Russian town of Tikhvin was first mentioned in the chronicles in the late 14th century in connection with the miraculous apparition of the icon of Our Lady (Odigitria) here. Unique in its beauty, the Cathedral of the Assumption of Our Lady was erected on that place in the early 16th century to house the highly honoured icon. Later on the fortress-monastery was raised around and became the core of the future town. The flourishing of the town as a trade and craft center falls on the 17th - middle 19th centuries. The World War II turned to be one of the major event in the town history of the 20th century when it was almost demolished in severe battles with the Germans trying to close the second circle of the siege around Leningrad.

The first museum collection on the history of Tikhvin lands was put together in 1913 by the teacher Ivan Mordvinov who was also the author of the detailed bibliography on the local history and tradition. The collections of the Tikhvin Museum of local lore took place of those from the initial museum. They were displayed in one of the buildings of the Uspensky Monastery but totally destroyed in the World War II years.

The current exhibit originates from the collection of school 1 of the town of Tikhvin. The school museum funds were donated to the town and the first display of the revived Museum of Local History and Tradition was opened in 1968.

The current name of the museum reflects its increased role in the research, protection and restoration of the architectural ensemble of the Tikhvin Bolshoy Uspensky Monastery.

The museum collection numbers 27 ths. items deposited in the funds of archeology, numismatics, arms, history and tradition, fine and applied arts, photography, documents and rare books.

Five permanent displays are open to visitors. They vividly present Tikhvin of the late 19th- early 20th centuries as a trading and cultural center, show a diverse and thorough selection of domestic utensils and implements used in rural everyday life, exhibit objects of religious ceremonies, tell the story of the miraculous Tikhvin Icon of Our Lady (Odigitria) and recount archeological digs on Tikhvin lands. Wonderful collections of Easter eggs, icons by local masters, photos of the turn of the centuries and register books from local churches are of great interest.

Rotating art and specialized exhibits from museum and private collections are arranged in the Concert and Exhibition Hall that was the Krestovozdvizhenskaya (Exaltation of the Cross) Church in old days.

6 Tikhvinskaya St., Tikhvin, Leningrad region; phone (81267) 11 820

Open hours:
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed Mondays

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