Legends of Kunstcamera

Reflecting on ways of education and spread of knowledge to Russia, Peter I has addressed for advise to Gottfried Lejbnits. The German scientist considered that as one of such ways might be collecting of rarities and creation of museums.

This idea has so grasped of Peter that its realisation to a life became not only state, but also a deep private affair of his reigning.

Horrifying ignoramuses and reactionaries, he signs the decree "About bringing of the ugly creatures".

For it in Peter's Summer palace the special premise named "Kunstcamera" is allocated.

But the collection grows so promptly that in three years threatens to supersede from a summer palace of its inhabitants.

And then Peter has decided to build a new building for this popular museum.

In a coastal line, in a so-called Russian Sloboda, in former Kikin chambers, a Kunstcamera has placed. But it was a very difficult history of the first steps of Russian education.

Books almost did not read. Theatre considered as "a devilish fun". People were afraid to go to Kunstcamera. Then "it has been thought up, that everyone will receive at Kunstkamera: who there came, that treated either a coffee cup, or a wine-glass of vodka or the Hungarian wine. And on snack gave a sandwich".
New premise of Kunstcamera
Oncem during visiting of Vasilevsky island, Peter I has noticed two pines. The branch of one of them so has grown into a trunk of another that it was impossible to define, to what of pines it belongs. Having exclaimed: "Oh! The Tree-monster! The Tree-monster!" - Peter has ordered to construct new Kunstcamera on this place.

At the same time Peter definitively has a decision to create on Vasilevsky island administrative and shopping centre of the new capital.

The first monumental construction in a territory of the Arrow of the Vasilevsky island, was Kunstcamera, a future scientific centre, public library and "anatomic theatrum".

The original project of Kunstcamera was created by George Matarnovi, and further consecutive speed up in building architects N.Gerbel, G.Kiaveri and M.Zemtsov accepted.

Official opening has taken place in 1728 though building and furnish of premises proceeded till 1734.

Source: N.A. Sindalovsky "Legends of St. Petersburg"