Museum of Ethnography

The Russian Museum of Ethnography.

St. Petersburg. Russia.

1.      The Russian Museum of Ethnography in St. Petersburg is one of the largest ethnographic museums in the world

2.      More than 500,000 exhibits and original photos of culture and customs of the peoples of Russia and 158 neighbouring countries of Eastern Europe, Central Asia and Caucasus are collected within its walls

3.      Time range of expositions: from the end of the XVIII century up to nowadays

4.      The Russian Ethnographic Museum is located in a building constructed in the style of Russian neoclassicism at the beginning of the XX century (one of the few facilities in St. Petersburg, specially built for the museum)

5.      The central exhibition hall of the museum is Marble Hall, one of the most beautiful architectural structures of St. Petersburg.

6.      Details of living of the people inhabiting the territory of the former empire are beautifully represented in the museum.

Ethnographic department of the Russian Museum was established by Emperor Nicholas II in response to the will of his father Emperor Alexander III and in his memory by the Supreme Decree of 13 April 1895. Nicholas II and other members of the royal family were keen collectors and they essentially became one of the first founders of the Ethnographic Department, where gifts from the personal collections of the Romanov’s House were included.

The museum was founded in 1902 as the Ethnographic Department of the Russian Museum of Emperor Alexander III. It was opened for visitors in 1923. The exposition is devoted to household culture of different regions of the former Russian Empire (now Russia and neighboring countries (Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Baltic States, Central Asia, the Caucasus)).

Exhibits telling us about occupations, houses, clothing details, holidays and ceremonies of people are presented in the halls of the Museum of Ethnography. A variety of household items, tools, ritual attributes are placed in here. Most of the exhibition installations, that tell us about people’s life in Russia of XIX-XX centuries, presented as a full-scale mock-ups.

Museum’s "Special Treasury" offers visitors to see exhibits presenting original ornaments of different nations, weapons and religious objects made of precious metals, pearls, precious and semi-precious stones. Many of them exist in a single copy, and traditions of their production are often lost.


The Russian Museum of Ethnography has a shop where you can buy authentic handicrafts.


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