Museum of Archeology

The Museum of Archeology of V. N. Karazin Kharkiv National University is almost as old as the University. It possesses the oldest collections not only in Kharkiv region. It traces its history back to 1807, when a room of antiquities was created at the University. In the same year, it received artifacts and other antiquities brought from Olvia and the Voronezh province. At about the same time, Dr. Landbad donated the ethnographic collection he had collected during the first Russian overseas expedition in 1803–1806, headed by I. F. Krusenstern.

In 1837, the Museum of Fine Arts and Antiquities was created at Kharkiv University, and the collections from various rooms, including the room of antiquities and coin room, were moved there.

The XII Archeological Congress (1902) in Kharkiv encouraged large-scale research activities in the region. Excavations were carried out by both Kharkivites (D. I. Bahalii, V. O. Babenko) and residents of other cities. The findings of these expeditions, as well as antiquities from private collections were displayed at the exhibition of the XII Archeological Congress. Most of these items were given to the Museum of Fine Arts and Antiquities. This collection together with artifacts from the excavations carried out by Kharkiv University archeologists the following year, laid a foundation for the Archeological Museum opened at the University in 1919. From the moment of its creation until 1936, the Museum was headed by O. S. Fedorovskyi, one of the leading Ukrainian archeologists of the 1920s and 1930s.

In 1920, when Kharkiv University was closed, the Archeological Museum acquired a municipal status.

In 1933, with the reopening of Kharkiv University, the Archeological Museum became part of the School of History. Due to regular archeological explorations and excavations by Kharkiv researchers in the 1920-30s, the collection of the Archeological Museum increased to almost 200,000 exhibits. The Museum also had a numismatic collection of about 40,000 coins and medals.

The Museum has amassed some of the country’s and world’s largest collections of items of the Bronze Age, Scythian Age, antique times, Chernyakhov and Saltiv Cultures.

In 1998, the Museum acquired its new name: the Museum of Archaeology and Ethnography of Slobidska Ukraine of V. N. Karazin Kharkiv National University.

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