Author Topic: Romanov Books  (Read 2391 times)

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Offline Dominic_Albanese

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Romanov Books
« on: July 15, 2005, 02:26:06 PM »
I got special permission from the FA to post this.  Check it out.  - What I'd give for $75,000 I didn't know what to do with  ;)

dca

http://www.romanovrussia.com/ImperialBooksCol.html

David_Pritchard

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Re: Romanov Books
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2005, 04:12:57 PM »
Now we know that a simple book plate would not do for a Romanov, they required custom made leather gilt bindings!

This display of books from the western palaces made me curious to know just how many of the books from the Imperial Palace Libraries actually survive to this day. I have read accounts of German and Spanish soldiers burning Imperial books, archives and furnishings during the Seige of Leningrad to stay warm during in the winter, that is after the special collection units looted the best works for transport to Germany.

Any input would be appreciated.

DAP


Offline Dominic_Albanese

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Re: Romanov Books
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2005, 04:55:08 PM »
I know that the New York Public Library has quite a collection of imperial books see:

http://www.nypl.org/press/romanov.cfm

I guess i had naiviely believed that all those materials had been packed up and sent to siberia during WW II.  I didn't know that alot of materials were left behind to be destroyed by the various invaders.  

dca

David_Pritchard

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Re: Romanov Books
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2005, 05:21:54 PM »
Most of the materials were sent away but the shear volume of the contents of all of the western palaces plus the Russian Museum and the Winter Palace overwhelmed the curators. Some things were left behind.

In the scheme of things, the curators probably packed the paintings first, then jewels and precious metals, then porcelain and glass followed by arms and furniture. When the barbarian looters are only miles away, one does have make hard choices as to what to pack.

I know that the antique gem (intaglio) collection at Pavlosk was abandoned to the Germans because of a lack of time and manpower to pack it up and get it on a train.

DAP

Offline Dominic_Albanese

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Re: Romanov Books
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2005, 05:24:37 PM »
It makes one abit sick to ones stomach to think about what might have been lost...

David_Pritchard

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Re: Romanov Books
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2005, 12:30:57 AM »
If you would like to know more of the destruction of Russian art, antiques, historical buildings libraries etc., the book I would recommend to you would be Pavlovsk : The Life of a Russian Palace by Suzanne Massie. This is a wonderful book for those who appreciate the Imperial palaces and the great struggles that the curators have endured to preserve them. I need to accquire another copy of the book because I gave mine to the Head of the Rumiantsev Palace (which houses the Seige of Leningrad Museum on the second floor) in 1996.

Two other books with a larger scope are Beautiful Loot: The Soviet's Plunder of Europe's Art Treasures by Konstantin Akinsha and Grigorii Kozlov; The Rape of Europa, The Fate of Europe's Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War by Lynn Nichols. In regard to this second book, the late Captain Walter Farmer, USAR of the MFAA (the unit charged by the US Government with the task of collecting Nazi looted works) told me some six or more years ago that this book greatly exagerated the role of US soldiers in stealing looted items from the Germans in the post war period, in particular he found the stories relating to the Hungarian Gold Train to be exagerated.

DAP
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by David_Pritchard »