Britannia and Muscovy: English Silver at the Court of the Tsars / Edition 1

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This superbly illustrated book accompanies an exhibition of thirty objects from the exceptional collection of English silver in the Moscow Kremlin Museums, where the world’s greatest surviving group of English sixteenth- and seventeenth-century silver is housed. Much of the silver from this period was melted down during the English Civil War, making the pieces at the Kremlin exceedingly rare and historically important.
The silver items—a large water pot with snake-shaped handle and spout, a flat drinking cup, a magnificent flagon shaped like a leopard, and more—exemplify the developing ties between England and Russia. Some pieces were brought to Russia as diplomatic gifts, some were presented by English trading agents, while others were purchased for the Tsar’s Treasury. Setting these silver treasures in fuller context, the catalogue also features precious objects made by Russian craftsmen, a group of English firearms from the Kremlin collection, and portraits, engravings, books, and maps that illuminate the important diplomatic and commercial exchanges that were taking place between the two countries.
In addition to essays by Kremlin curators Natalya Abramova, Elena Yablonskaya, and Irina Zagarodnaya, the catalogue will include writings by Paul Bushkovitch, Olga Dmitrieva, Philippa Glanville, Maija Jansson, and Edward Kasinec.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This volume, published in collaboration with the Yale Center for British Art; the Gilbert Collection, London; and the Moscow Kremlin Museums, celebrates the 200th anniversary of the Armory Museum of the Kremlin. Though it is a catalog of the exhibitions at the Yale Center (which closed Sept. 10) and the Gilbert Collection (running Oct. 14-Jan. 28), it is also a scholarly and important contribution to the history of English silver in the 16th and 17th centuries. There is an essay by coeditor Dmitrieva on the first hundred years of Anglo-Russian relations and an excellent contribution by Philippa Glanville on "Goldsmiths and the Court: English Silver 100-1665," as well as essays on English firearms in Moscow, English diplomats at the tsar's court, and ambassadorial gifts. The catalog entries are accompanied by high-quality color and black-and-white illustrations. One of the fascinating aspects of this volume is the illustration of letters from English monarchs to the tsars. The detail and conception of the mostly monumental pieces of silver make them among the very best surviving from this period, the more so since so much silver was melted down during the English civil wars of the 17th century. This volume should be strongly considered by every school, university, and public library. Martin Chasin, Adult Inst., Bridgeport, CT Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300116786
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication date: 7/15/2006
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 9.80 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Table of Contents

'The golden chain of traffic' : the first hundred years of Anglo-Russian relations 12
English silver of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in the Kremlin 36
The goldsmiths and the court : silver in London 1600-65 46
English silver 60
The embassy of Charles Howard, Earl of Carlisle 116
English silver brought by the Earl of Carlisle 118
French silver brought by the Earl of Carlisle 128
Seventeenth-century English firearms in the Kremlin 134
English guns 144
Russian guns based on English designs 168
English diplomats at the court of the tsars 176
An English 'charyott' for Tsar Boris Godunov 196
Ambassadorial gifts 198
Russian ambassadors in England : eyewitness accounts 207
Letters from English monarchs to Russian tsars 208
The Moscow Kremlin and its history 218
Russian ecclesiastical silver 228
Russian secular silver 248
The imagery of early Anglo-Russian relations 260
English writings on Russia 266
Depicting Russia 276
List of English silver of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in the armoury 285
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