The Hermitage: The Biography of a Great Museum

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The Hermitage Musuem in St Petersburg is possibly the greatest museum in the world. It began as a showcase for the art treasures of the Tsars and reflects their legendary extravagance. Imperial romances, marriages and murders all had an impact on the collection, as did the byzantine bartering of international politics. Nationalised by the Bolsheviks in 1917, the museum expanded to fill the imperial family's Winter Palace and the three riverside pavilions that were built onto the palace in the late eighteenth century. Vast, ...

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