July 01, 2014

Travel Notes

After seven years of restoration, the Novgorod Kremlin has opened its Chamber of Facets (Гранитовая палата) to host a permanent exhibition of medieval Russian jewelry.

The fifteenth-century red brick Gothic building was used by the court and high society of the Novgorod Republic and is Russia’s oldest civilian stone building. Its vaulted rooms have been retrofitted with state of the art lighting that now showcases the gold jewelry and various religious artifacts, some of which date to the fifth century and were commissioned by Novgorod’s wealthy monasteries.

The Novgorod Kremlin complex is a World Heritage Site protected by UNESCO and is also worth visiting in order to see the museum’s famous examples of early writing on birch-bark. These amazing artifacts offer a glimpse into daily life in the fifteenth century and point to the medieval city’s high degree of literacy.

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