Established in 1851, the Kremlin Armoury is one of the oldest museums in the city, and can be found within the walls of the Moscow Kremlin. With a collection that is closely linked to the history of the Kremlin itself, this is a museum that is a must-visit for those interested in learning more about Moscow’s rich heritage.
The Architecture of the Armoury Chamber
Originally built as part of the Grand Kremlin Palace, the Armoury Chamber was completed and designated as a museum in 1851. The architectural style closely resembles that of the Grand Kremlin Palace Complex, with 17th century details seen all across its facade. The building makes use of quite an unusual system of high floor vaults, which, when contrasting against the ornate columns, creates the illusion of interior amplitude and extravagance.
The Museum’s Collection
The Kremlin Armoury boasts quite a unique collection, mainly made up of decorative and applied art. Many of the most valuable items within the collection were previously preserved for centuries by the tsars, while others were created in the Kremlin workshops themselves. In addition to the 4000 pieces of art that you will find here, which comes from both Russia as well as European countries, you will also be able to see everything from ancient state regalia to ceremonial clothing to medieval Russian embroidery to weapons and arms, as well as the largest collection of gold in the world.
The Diamond Fund
A valuable collection of treasures from all over the country, the Diamond Fund is considered to be one of the most important collections in the world. Since 1967, the ground floor of the Kremlin Armoury has been dedicated to exhibiting the Diamond Fund, which tourists are free to explore. One of the highlights of the Diamond Fund is The Big Triangle, which is the heaviest gold nugget in the world, weighing in at an impressive 36 kilograms.
The Armoury Chamber Mobile App
In order to help make the most of the Kremlin experience for visitors, the museum has produced a multimedia app for smartphones and tablets, called the Moscow Kremlin Museums Armoury Chamber. In addition to displaying the latest news from the Moscow Kremlin, the section of the app that is donated to the Armoury Chamber features everything from a map of the museum to an audio guide for those who want to tour the museum on their own, and even games with museum content, and quests that you can complete while navigating your way around the museum. This is a great way to really expand your learning experience, making your museum visit so much more interactive and memorable. It is also a fantastic way to involve your children in the museum experience and will help them to understand Moscow’s history so much more.
At one point in time, the Kremlin Armoury was responsible for producing, purchasing and storing weapons, with the finest Muscovite gunsmiths working here. Today, this museum is a fantastic representation of military life in Moscow, and the varied exhibits are the perfect way to learn more about this.