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Smirnov, Iakov Ivanovich

    Full Name: Smirnov, Iakov Ivanovich

    Other Names:

    • Jacob Ivanovich Smirnov

    Gender: male

    Date Born: 1869

    Date Died: 1918

    Place Born: St. Petersburg, Russia

    Place Died: St. Petersburg, Russia

    Home Country/ies: Russia

    Subject Area(s): archaeology and Medieval (European)


    Russian archaeologist and medievalist art historian. Smirnov was born in Petrograd, Russia, which is present-day St. Petersburg, Russia. He graduated from the University in St. Petersburg in 1891 with a degree in philology. He taught as a Privatdozent in St. Petersburg. In 1899 his work on Syrian silver, published with D. A. Khvol’son appeared and he accepted the position in the medieval and renaissance department at the State Hermitage Museum. His research trips to the Balkans, the Crimea, and Palestine resulted in detailed reports on ancient and medieval monuments, including carved stone steles and images, known as vishapy. In 1903 he contributed the section on churches to the large inventory of Asia Minor, edited by Josef Rudolf Thomas Strzygowski. He became a professor at the Russian Academy of Sciences in 1917. He also participated in the excavations at Jericho and Armenia. His main work, Vostochnoye serebro, is a catalogue of Central Asian metalwork found in Russia, identifying Sogdian, Khorezmian and other traditions in the work. His students included André Grabar. He died in Petrograd, USSR, which is present-day St. Petersburg, Russia.

    Selected Bibliography

    and Chubinashvili, Georgii Nikolaevich. Die Kirche in Zromi und ihr Mosaik. Massaufnahmen des Architekten Severov. volume 2 of Georgische Baukunst. Tiflis: Verlag des Museums der bildenden Künste “Metechi”, 1934; Der Schatz von Achalgori. Tiflis: Verlag des Georgischen Museums, 1934; and Crowfoot, J. W. Kleinasien: ein Neuland der Kunstgeschichte [etc.] Stryzgowski, Josef, ed. Leipzig: J. C. Hinrichs, 1903; and Khvol’son, Daniil Avraamovich. Serebrianoe Siriiskoe bliudo: naidonnoe v Permskom kraie. St. Petersburg: Akademiia nauk, 1899; and Marr, Nikolai IAkovlevich. Vishapy. Leningrad: OGIZ, 1931; Vostochnoe serebro. Atlas drevnei serebrianoi i zolotoi posudy. St. Petersburg: s.n., 1909.


    Petrukhin, V. YA. “Smirnov, Yakov.” Dictionary of Art.


    "Smirnov, Iakov Ivanovich." Dictionary of Art Historians (website).

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