Calendar Services Feedback Site Map Help Home Digital Collection Children & Education Hermitage History Exhibitions Collection Highlights Information


Ancient RusThe Turki, Khazars, Bulgarians, Pojovsty, and Pereshcherpina TreasurePerm Animal StyleEastern European BarbariansBosporousNomads of the Sarmatians and Huns TimeThe Siberian collection fo Peter IEarly Nomads of the Altaic RegionThe ScythiansEarly FarmersKoban and Colchaian CulturesThe Eneolithic and Bronze AgesNeolithic ArtPalaeolithic ArtPalaeolithic Art

Peter the Great put together Russia's earliest archaeological collection, largely composed of objects taken from ancient burial mounds in the early 18th century in Western Siberia and the Altai area by tomb-robbers. Rich items of gold and silver, the majority in the Scythian-Siberian animal style, are the pride of the collection, particularly the famed double belt buckles with intricate scenes of animals fighting fabulous creatures.

In 1715 Prince M.P.Gagarin brought 10 objects from Tobolsk province in Siberia to Peter I, who immediately appreciated the importance of the finds of works by ancient goldsmiths. He issued edicts to the governors of Ruszsian provinces that they purchase all ancient and curious objects at the Treasury's expense and send them to his new capital, St Petersburg. Those first 10 objects are today still the finest part of the collection. A second group of articles from Siberia was delivered in 1716 and these pieces constitute the majority in the present collection, over 250 items in all.

Pair of Belt Buckles Boar Hunt
5th-4th century BC
Larger view

Pair of Belt Buckles Dragons by the Tree of Life
4th-5th century BC
Larger view

If you enjoyed this collection, you might want to also visit the other collections at the State Hermitage Museum.

The Palace of Peter I

Pectoral Plaque
6th-5th century BC
Larger view

Belt Buckles
5th-4th century BC
Larger view

Pair of Belt Buckles
4th-3th century BC
Larger view


Copyright © 2011 State Hermitage Museum
All rights reserved. Image Usage Policy.
About the Site