Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Two portraits of the Swedish King Charles XII

The first Poltava Battle Museum was officially opened on June 26th 1909. After the Revolution of 1917, the Poltava Battle Museum, as so many other historical sights, was left unattended. As a result, thieves broke into the museum several times and stole items from the exhibits. To prevent further looting, in 1921 all of the remaining exhibits were transferred to the city’s Regional Museum and the Poltava Battle Museum was closed. After World War II the Council of Ministers of the USSR resolved to resurrect the Poltava Battle Museum. In 1950 the second Poltava Battle Museum was opened in a late 19th century building that had been used as a hospital for disabled veterans of Russian-Turkish war. On the picture you can see Ukrainian President Victor Yushchenko standing before the ugliest portrait of the Swedish King Charles XII ever painted. This portrait was transferred to Poltava regional museum from looted first museum of the Battle of Poltava. A few years ago SMB has donated a high quality copy of the Charles XII’s portrait from Gripsholm Art Gallery to the museum.
Learn more about Poltava Batlle Museum at