МУЗЕЙ ПУТЕШЕСТВЕННИКА П.К. КОЗЛОВА

ИСТОРИЯ ИСЛЕДОВАНИЯ ЦЕНТРАЛЬНОЙ АЗИИ

English version


 
P.K. KOZLOV MEMORIAL MUSEUM
 
P.K. Kozlov Memorial Museum was set up in Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) in 1989, but was officially inaugurated and opened for public only in December 2002. Formally, it is affiliated with the Institute for the History of Science & Technology at the Russian Academy of Sciences (Saint Petersburg Branch).
 
Petr Kuzmich Kozlov (1863-1935) is one of the Russian pioneer travelers in Central Asia (Mongolia, China and Tibet). He participated in six expeditions to these regions organized under the auspices of the Imperial Russian Geographical Society, three of which he led himself (in 1899-1901, 1907-1909 and 1923-1926).  His most valuable collections are now preserved in the State Hermitage (the Kharo-Khoto findings, numerous Buddha statuettes), Institute of Oriental Manuscripts (Tangut, Chinese and Tibetan texts), Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (ethnographical materials), Zoological Museum and the Botanical Gardens (samples of Central Asian fauna and flora).
 
The museum tells a thrilling story of the great era of Russian exploration of Central Asia. It all started in 1870 when a young army officer, Nikolai Przhevalsky, volunteered to lead his first pioneering expedition to Mongolia and the Land of the Tanguts which ultimately ended at the “Roof of the World”, Tibet. Petr Kozlov, who assisted Przhevalsky on his two last journeys, continued after his mentor’s death in 1888 along the path of extensive exploration of the vast and largely uncharted Asian Heartland. His achievements were mainly in the field of geography and natural sciences, though his name today is remembered worldwide for the archeological excavation of the “dead city” of Khara-Khoto on the fringes of the Gobi Desert in 1908-1909, which resulted in the sensational discovery of the vanished Tangut civilization.
 
The Kozlov Museum is located in the building which is next door to the city administration quarters, the Smolny. It is accommodated in a suite of rooms in the apartment where Kozlov had lived with his wife, Elizabeth Pushkariova (who was later to become a prominent ornitologist), from 1912 until his death.  

The exhibition space includes:
• the vestibule;
• P.K. Kozlov’s study and library, being the core of the museum;
•  main exhibition room which is entirely devoted to the history of Russia’s exploration of Central Asia. This was undertaken by a whole host of outstanding explorers – P.P. Semionov-Tian-Shansky, N.M. Przhevalsky, M.V. Pevtsov, G.N. Potanin, P.K. Kozlov, to name a few;
• the Tibetan Chamber which focuses on Buddhist religion and culture as objects of scholarly research in Tsarist and Soviet Russia. Here one will find a voluminous collection of Tibetan books (xylographs), printed from woodblocks, and various ritual objects, some of which (e.g. the Buddha bronzes and painted images or tangkas) were lent to the museum by the State Hermitage.

There is also one additional room designed for temporary exhibitions. 
 
The items on display in the museum are mainly the things Kozlov used during his travels, such as wooden trunks, leather bags, various measuring instruments, binoculars, a medical chest, a toilet-case, etc. as well as those presented to him on various occasions, such as a Chinese ivory sun-dial and a silk salutation scarf bestowed on the traveler by the 13th Dalai Lama. These are supplemented with rare documents – travel journals, letters, books, maps, drawings and miscellaneous old photographs.
 
There is also a small library and document depositary attached to the museum. The bulk of the archives consists of materials pertaining to the life and exploration work of P.K. Kozlov and his wife E.V. Pushkariova-Kozlova. 
 
Tours and special rates for groups are available with advance reservations.
 
Contact Information:
 
Address: St Petersburg, Smolny Prospect 6, Apt. 32
Tel.: 7 (812) 710-03-50 or (812) 577-12-43
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