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The State Hermitage Museum is a museum of art and culture in Saint Petersburg, Russia and is the second-largest art museum in the world. It was founded in 1764 when Empress Catherine the Great acquired an impressive collection of paintings from the Berlin merchant Johann Ernst Gotzkowsky.
See the fact file below for more information on the Hermitage Museum or alternatively, you can download our 20-page Hermitage Museum worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- The State Hermitage Museum is located in the center of St. Petersburg. The museum itself is the oldest museum in St. Petersburg and the second largest in the world.
- It was founded in 1764 under the rule of Empress Catherine the Great. At that time, the Empress acquired huge collection of paintings.
- The paintings originally were in the hands of a Berlin merchant named Johann Ernst Gotzkowsky. The museum has been open to the public since 1852.
- Back then, the Hermitage building served as a workplace and also home to almost a thousand people. The people that resided in the building included the Imperial family.
- The year 1764 is considered the year of its founding by Catherine the Great, the originator and leading practitioner of Art without Borders.
- That year, she purchased a major collection of 225 paintings by Flemish and Dutch masters that had originally been assembled for Frederick II of Prussia.
- This stunning coup launched the Hermitage’s collection with a treasure trove of paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens, Raphael, van Dyck, Hals, Holbein, Titian and many more that dazzle us to this day. Her purchases fused her love of sublime beauty with an understanding of how her audacious acquisitions could enhance the perception of Russia as a world power.
- It has been estimated that she amassed over 4,000 paintings, 38,000 books, 10,000 engraved gems, 10,000 drawings, 16,000 coins and medals and a natural history collection during her reign, thus in just one generation managing to rival the collections of the older European museums.
- The collections grew so fast that she had to embark on a major building program as well – expanding to the 1,000 sumptuous rooms we marvel at today.
- Located between the Neva River and Palace Square, the Hermitage Museum complex consists of five buildings – Winter Palace, Large Hermitage, Small Hermitage, New Hermitage, and the Theatre of Catherine the Great.
- Each of the buildings was designed by a celebrated architect from the 18th and 19th centuries. The most famous of the buildings is the Winter Palace, designed by Bartolomeo Rastrelli that was the residence the Russian emperors until 1917.
- Today the buildings house part of the Hermitage’s unique European, Russian, Impressionist and Modern, Roman, Greek, Islamic, and Egyptian collections.
LARGEST ART GALLERY
- The State Hermitage Museum is Russia’s largest art gallery and is the second largest art museum in the world. It has 6 buildings and has has over 3 million items in collection from impressionist masterpieces to fascinating Oriental treasures.
- Tourists estimate that it needs several years to view each collection and display, and so most of them prefer to have guided tours that will only highlight their most interesting collections.
- The Hermitage Museum has a separate room allotted for Rembrandt. The room itself presents 24 paintings by the Dutch artist. It is the largest collection outside the Netherlands. The saying is that to see all parts of the museum, visitors need to walk for 22 kilometers.
- The Hermitage Museum possesses almost 3,000,000 art items. The art dates back to the Stone Age era up to the present. Even the original collection of Catherine the Great still remains in the Hermitage Museum building.
- The collections include various types of art. There are Egyptian antiquities and classical antiquities. There is prehistoric art, jewelry and decorative art, Italian renaissance, and Italian and Spanish fine art.
- The cat guards of the Hermitage Museum are usually referred to as the Hermitage Cats. They are a group of cats that reside in the complex of Hermitage Museum. Back in the old days, the cats roamed throughout the museum galleries.
- These days, most of the cats live in the basement of the museum. During summer the cats sometimes appear on the embankment or the square.
- The State Hermitage Museum itself has three people who act as caretakers of those cats and a press secretary to handle the cats.
- In 1745 Empress Catherine II made a request to only choose the best hunters of rats to live in museum. She even called the Hermitage Cats the security guards of the art galleries.
- There is an annual festival held dedicated to the Hermitage Cats. On the day of the festival, the museum allows the visitors to view the cellars of the Winter Palace.
- The cellars are where the cats live. There is also a discovery game that visitor can take a part in.
Hermitage Museum Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Hermitage Museum across 20 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Hermitage Museum worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the State Hermitage Museum which is a museum of art and culture in Saint Petersburg, Russia and is the second-largest art museum in the world. It was founded in 1764 when Empress Catherine the Great acquired an impressive collection of paintings from the Berlin merchant Johann Ernst Gotzkowsky.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Hermitage in Saint Petersburg Facts
- Give Me Facts!
- Hermitage Timeline
- My Museum!
- Hermitage Article
- Words to Know
- People Behind
- Good or Trash
- Two Worlds
- Letter fo a Friend
- Catherine the Great
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Link will appear as Hermitage Museum Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, October 22, 2019
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.