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MIL OSI Translation. Region: Russian Federation –

In the Central Naval Museum named after Emperor Peter the Great, a photo exhibition “Ship’s favorites” has opened, which tells about animals for which warships have become their home. Visitors to the exhibition can see more than 100 photographs taken on ships of both the Imperial and the modern Navy, the heroes of which are the four-legged “sailors”.

The director of the TsVMM named after Emperor Peter the Great Ruslan Nekhai, congratulating the team on the opening of the new exhibition, especially focused on the fact that it was completely created by the collective of the photographic fund of the museum, where the co-curators of the project were the head of the fund Marina Kruglova and Viktor Mozgovoy with the participation of the staff of the fund Elena Kalyakina and Igor Milyaev … Having created an interesting exposition, the team of authors confidently pushed out in the exhibition space of the TsVMM the funds for storing ship models and fine art, which are usually given priority in the implementation of exhibition projects.

“The opening of this and many of our other exhibitions is not only a usual thing for all of us. In today’s conditions, this is a rhythmic, well-thought-out and well-done work – “, – said the director of the Central Naval Museum Ruslan Nekhai

The co-curator of the exhibition Marina Kruglova supported this mood, adding that the final exhibition season of this difficult year, the exposition was supposed to sound a major note, according to the plan of its creators, – communion with our smaller brothers. The exhibition provides an excellent opportunity to admire the four-legged “sailors” who gave people joy, ”said Marina Kruglova, recalling that stories about this were reflected in the works of Russian maritime literature.

And even if the characters of today’s exhibition are not as famous as the heroes of the works of such writers, Stanyukovich, Novikov-Priboy, Kolbasyev or Konetsky, literally every photograph of them has its own very interesting story, many of which were told by the co-curator of the exhibition, Viktor Mozgovoy, during the first tour of its exposition.

“Ship favorites” – a unique photo exhibition with this name about animals on ships of the fleet began work today, December 18, 2020 at the Central Naval Museum named after Emperor Peter the Great. More than 100 photographs made by both famous masters and amateurs – veterans of the Navy are offered to the visitors of the exhibition.

At the time of the emergence of regular military sailing fleets and the emergence of a corps of naval officers from among the representatives of the aristocracy, the custom of keeping pets arose. This fashion came into use, primarily in Great Britain during the reign of King Henry VIII. There is still a saying: “An English family without a dog is not a family.” In those days, the Briton, going on a long voyage, did not want to part with his pet and took him with him to the ship.

This custom was spied on by the British Peter I.

It is curious that in Britain the custom of keeping beloved animals on ships has now been lost, but in Russia it has survived to this day. For many years, the following article has been transferred from one edition of the Naval Regulations of the Navy to another: “Personnel are allowed to keep animals on the ship only with the permission of the ship commander. Animals must be immediately removed from the ship if there is a suspicion that they have developed a disease that is dangerous to human health, as well as if they have noticed abuse of animals by the personnel ”(CU VMF-2001, art. 456).

In turn, the sailors, looking at the officers, also began to tame the animals. This usually happened spontaneously. Walking around the city, the sailors noticed a hungry, wet, frozen puppy and took him with them to the ship. The command rarely opposed such an initiative, realizing that the sailors needed psychological relaxation. Such cases are reflected in the works of Russian maritime literature by such writers as K.M. Stanyukovich, A.S. Novikov-Priboy, S.A.Kolbasyev, L.S.Sobolev, G.K. Kostenko and V. V. Konetsky.

There was one more way for animals to enter ships, moreover, a purely Russian one, which has no analogues in any of the foreign fleets – this is the scientific one. Russian ships, making long voyages, including those around the world, conducted a wide range of scientific research: geographical, hydrographic, hydrological, ethnographic, etc. But among other things, the Academy of Sciences set sailors the task of collecting collections of flora and fauna along the ship’s route. This is where the most exotic animals sometimes got on board.

Rarely did animals end up on ships as “representative gifts.” For example, in 1889-1890 the cruiser Pamyat Azov made a long voyage under the braid pennant of the heir to the Russian throne, Grand Duke Nikolai Alexandrovich. During a visit to the capital of Siam, Bangkok, the local king Chulalongkorn (Rama V) presented the future Emperor Nicholas II with a whole collection of interesting animals: two elephants, a panther, two white monkeys, as well as various tropical birds. For their maintenance, a menagerie was set up on the ship.

According to the staff of the Central Naval Museum, “it can be assumed that the collection of the Zoological Museum contains exhibits brought by naval sailors, or perhaps the descendants of the ship’s favorites who came to Russia across the seas and oceans still live in Russian zoos.”

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EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.

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