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Column Hall

Joint project of St.-Petersburg Mining museum and Forpost Nord-West.
Горный музей, Колонный зал
Фото © Форпост Северо-Запад / Павел Долганов

The Column Hall retains its magnificent decoration from the 1820s, the time when its interior was created by the architect Alexander Postnikov.

The plafond is decorated with painting in the grisaille technique, made in 1822 by the famous artist Giovanni Battista Scotti, and consists of three allegorical panels: "The establishment of mining in Russia by Peter I", "The prosperity of mining in Russia under Emperor Alexander I" and "The establishment of the Mining Corps by Catherine II ".

The Hall continues with the systematic collection of minerals in the form of separate crystal-chemical groups: starting from simple salts and borates and ending with complex aluminosilicates and rare compounds.

Samples of Russian topaz and polychrome topaz from pegmatite deposits of Volyn are known for the perfection of their crystals and large sizes and deserve a particular mention.

Perfect forms are also a distinctive mark of emeralds and aquamarines of the Urals, Transbaikalia, Afghanistan and Brazil.

Many of the Hall's exhibits are also of historical value, such as a druse of rock crystal from Japan, presented as a gift by Emperor Alexander II, or a beryl crystal damaged by a German shell in the course of artillery attack during the Great Patriotic War.

Hall of Deposit Mineralogy

Orthosilicate Hall