Collector and philanthropist: how Pavel Tretyakov became an honorary citizen of Moscow

January 11


One of the most famous museums in Moscow — the Tretyakov Gallery — got its name in honor of merchants Pavel and Sergei Tretyakov who founded it. Moscow Glavarchiv publishes documents concerning conferring one of them the title of Honorary Citizen of Moscow.

The richest merchants Pavel Tretyakov and his younger brother Sergey began collecting pieces of art quite early. In the 1870s, the brothers built a special building to place a collection of paintings there. Soon it was opened to the public.

On August 31, 1892, after his brother died, Pavel Tretyakov, together with his nephew Nikolai (a son of Sergei Tretyakov), wrote an application to the Moscow City Duma to donate to the city the art gallery and the house where it was located. On September 15, the Duma decided to accept the gift and express deep gratitude to Pavel and Nikolai Tretyakov for their donations.

In addition, the museum with an art collection was awarded the name ‘City Art Gallery of Pavel and Sergei Mikhailovich Tretyakov’. The Duma petition was submitted to the Emperor Alexander III, who allowed the new museum to be named in honor of the Tretyakovs.

In December 1896, 65 councillors of the Moscow City Duma submitted an application with a request to confer Pavel Tretyakov the title of Honorary Citizen of Moscow. On January 23, 1897, His Imperial Majesty permission was received.

"Pavel Mikhailovich Tretyakov, for his great merit to Moscow, which he made the focus of artistic enlightenment in Russia, having donated his precious collection of works of Russian art to the ancient capital, was recognized as an honorary citizen of the city of Moscow by the verdict of the Moscow City Duma on December 17, 1896, with His Imperial Majesty permission," states the preserved Certificate on conferring the title.

Today, the Tretyakov Gallery is the main museum of national art of the country. Its collection includes more than 200 thousand pieces of art and is regularly renewed.


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