INSIGHT INTO THE PAST
"...In theroom, you can find the most amazing things that are not expected to be here: for instance, a Renaissance marble vase on a pedestal, donated by Count Rostopchin. The vase is decorated with a scene in high relief, depicting the marriage of Cupid and Psyche. Another gift was received by the Library from the Viennese State Ministry. This is a low rosewood cabinet of excellent workmanship..»
Strolling through the Imperial Public Library. 1872
To store books in the reading rooms, the architect Apollon Schedrin used a full-fledged system of floor-to-ceiling bookcases that extend along the walls. The bookcases are arranged in two rows: very close to the walls and at some distance from them. At the corners of the first floor rooms, there are wooden staircases that lead to the upper galleries supported by brackets. These galleries are located slightly below the semicircular windows in all three first floor rooms and are intended for storing books.
The Main Building by the architect Sokolov was conceived as a library-museum. Its premises were distinguished by a complex spatial structure and richness of decoration. In contrast, the interiors of the Rossi Building were architecturally plain. However, impressive, wall to wall bookcases of fine design as well as sculptures and paintings in the hall and in the rooms, gave the interiors a certain solemnity.
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