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Entries / Menageries (entry)

Menageries (entry)


Categories / Population/Urban Living

MENAGERIES. 1) In the beginning of the 18th century - hunting areas in the appendages of tsar's property. In 1718 a menagerie like that was established in Sarskaya farmstead (see Tsarskoe Selo). 2) Places where wild and unusual animals are kept for exhibition. The first menagerie of this kind (Animal Yard) in St. Petersburg was established in 1714 beside Pochtovy Yard on Tsaritsyn Meadow (around the area where the Summer Garden is now situated) for keeping an elephant which was given to tsar Peter the Great by the Persian Shah. In 1741 14 elephants were taken to St. Petersburg from Persia, and since that time the Animal Yard has been called Elephant Yard. In 1744 it was moved to Ligovsky Canal (where Oktyabrskaya Hotel is presently situated). Since then menageries came on to the free market. Till 1741 on the grounds between Khamovaya Street (from the early 19th century called Mokhovaya Street) and the Fontanka River (on the spot of present-day houses 27 - 29) the Imperial Menageries were situated, where lions, leopards, foxes, polar bears and apes were kept. In the parish belonging to Simeonovskaya Church (Church of St. Simon) (presently houses 33-35) till 1741 a bison yard was kept. In the 1740s menageries were established on Petrovsky Island, a bear menagerie in Alexander Nevsky Monastery. In the 1740-50s menageries were under the jurisdiction of the Hunting Master's Office that was in charge of emperors' hunt. Since the late 18th century foreign circus companies established numerous travelling menageries in St. Petersburg, where since the early 19th century different animal trainers also began to appear. In the 1820-50s the best-known menageries belonged to the foreigners C. Lehmann, V. Berg, Carter, and Fegley. Russian animal trainers (Y. Pokorin and others) gave performances in their own menageries. R. Manfredo and Cazanova's monkey theatre, dog comedy of Mukhaev, Gerold's bird circus and other attractions were especially popular. Since the 1840s tricks of animal trainers were included in circus programmes (see Circus). Since the beginning of the 19th century travelling menageries represented an essential element of popular carnivals. In 1865 the first public zoological garden was opened in St. Petersburg (see Zoo), which was called by the public the Menagerie (in 1871 Bolshaya Nikolskaya Street, where the present-day Zoo is situated, was renamed to Zverinskaya Street). Since 1873 animal trainers began to perform their tricks there. The experience of commercial menageries was used in creating travelling zoological circuses, which can be divided into demonstrational ones (where animals are only exhibited) and the ones where animal trainers take part in the show. Currently in St. Petersburg demonstrational zoological circuses regularly appear in summer in Rybatskoe, Avtovo and other districts.

References: Кузнецов Е. М. Цирк: Происхождение, развитие, перспективы. М., 1971. С. 223-238; Дмитриев Ю.А. Цирк в России: От истоков до 1917 г. М., 1977. С. 37-38, 99-101; Денисенко Е. Е. От зверинцев к зоопарку: История ленингр. зоопарка. СПб., 2003. p. 5-44.

Y. N. Kruzhnov.

Persons
Berg Vasily Karlovich
Casanova Giovanni Giacomo
Fegley
Gerold
Lehmann Christian
Manfredo R.
Mukhaev
Peter I, Emperor
Pokorin Yu.
Сarter

Addresses
Mokhovaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 33
Mokhovaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 27-29
Mokhovaya St./Saint Petersburg, city, house 35
Zverinskaya Street/Saint Petersburg, city

Bibliographies
Дмитриев Ю. А. Цирк в России: От истоков до 1917 г. М., 1977
Денисенко Е. Е. От зверинцев к зоопарку: История ленингр. зоопарка. СПб., 2003
Кузнецов Е. М. Цирк: Происхождение, развитие, перспективы. М., 1971

The subject Index
Pribaltiiskaya Hotel
Alexander Nevsky Lavra
Circus (entry)

Chronograph
1741