Quiz about Tales of the Winter Palace of Russia
Quiz about Tales of the Winter Palace of Russia

Tales of the Winter Palace of Russia Quiz


From 1712-1917 (except for a brief period from 1728-30) the Winter Palace was considered to be the official home of the Russian Czar. Come along with me, and let's see what we can find out about the history of the building!

A photo quiz by ponycargirl. Estimated time: 4 mins.
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Author
ponycargirl
Time
4 mins
Type
Photo Quiz
Quiz #
404,630
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
7 / 10
Plays
164
Awards
Top 20% Quiz
Last 3 plays: Guest 216 (7/10), Guest 81 (7/10), Guest 173 (0/10).
photo quiz
1. In which city is the Winter Palace of Russia located? Hint

St. Petersburg
Kiev
Moscow
Vladivostok

photo quiz
2. The Winter Palace was not built on an especially great site. Which feature made the site a poor location? Hint

Swamp
Island
Mountain
Glacier

photo quiz
3. The Winter Palace of Russia was rebuilt several times. The one that exists today is considered to be the fourth Winter Palace.

True
False

photo quiz
4. In which of the following styles of architecture was the first Winter Palace of Russia originally built? Hint

Petrine Baroque
French Baroque
Byzantine Baroque
Rococo

photo quiz
5. One of the only remaining mostly original features of the rococo interior of the Winter Palace of Russia is its main staircase. What is the name of this staircase, which was the focal point of an annual religious tradition? Hint

Spanish Steps
Jordan Staircase
Rococo Staircase
Tulip Stairs

photo quiz
6. The Great Throne Room in the Winter Palace of Russia is also called St. George's Hall. What historic event took place there in 1906? Hint

The assassination of Peter III
The wedding of Nicholas and Alexandra
The first meeting of the Duma
The signing of the Emancipation Edict of Russia

photo quiz
7. In 1837 the interior of the Winter Palace of Russia was almost totally destroyed by fire. Which of the following statements is true? Hint

Peasants working on the Winter Palace set it on fire.
Most of the valuable art housed there was destroyed.
The Czar considered not rebuilding the Winter Palace after the fire.
It allowed for the replacement of obsolete materials for better ones.

photo quiz
8. During which of the following conflicts was the Winter Palace used as a hospital? Hint

World War I
Crimean War
Russo-Japanese war
Sino-Japanese War

photo quiz
9. Czar Nicholas II and his family were assassinated at the Winter Palace.

True
False

photo quiz
10. Today the Winter Palace of Russia is part of which complex? Hint

Hermitage Museum
Russian White House
Kremlin
House of Soviets


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. In which city is the Winter Palace of Russia located?

Answer: St. Petersburg

Czar Peter the Great wanted to build a new capital that reflected his plan to Westernize Russia. His desire for a trading port on the Baltic Sea led him to the site of Nyen, a Swedish fortress town. Interestingly, when he took over the town and founded the city of St. Petersburg in 1703, it still really belonged to Sweden, with whom Russia was involved in the Great Northern War. The land was formally ceded to Russia when the Great Northern War ended in 1721, nine years after the audacious Peter had moved his capital from Moscow.

The city of St. Petersburg, however, was not named after the famous Peter; it was named after St. Peter, the disciple of Christ, who was Czar Peter's patron saint. The name was changed to Petrograd from 1914-1924, to Leningrad from 1924-1991, and then back to St. Petersburg, after 54% of the city's voters choose to reinstate the original name.
2. The Winter Palace was not built on an especially great site. Which feature made the site a poor location?

Answer: Swamp

Even though it was a busy trade port before it was taken by the Czar, an estimated 20% of the area that made up the town was comprised of swampland. Czar Peter, however, consulted the finest engineers in Europe, who drained the swamp. Sand and stones were also used to fill in springs and small rivers, and soil was brought in to insure that homes were built on solid ground.

Even so, the city, sometimes called the Venice of the North, was not a popular destination after its Russian founding, in spite of the fact that the Czar choose to reside there and use it as the seat of his government. Nobles were ordered to build stone houses and live in them for at least half the year. They were not allowed to cut down the nearby trees, so hot water was only available to them once a week. And - the ground was so poor that it has been said that only turnips and cabbages would grow there. Most members of Peter's family did not even pretend to like the place! Peter died in 1725, and shortly after the royal residence was moved back to Moscow. In 1730, Peter's niece, Anna, became Czarina, and she returned with her court to St. Petersburg.
3. The Winter Palace of Russia was rebuilt several times. The one that exists today is considered to be the fourth Winter Palace.

Answer: True

The first residence made for Peter the Great in St. Petersburg can hardly be described as being palatial. It was a log cabin, built in 1704, which was moved to another site in 1711 and still exists there today. Construction began on what is considered to be the first Winter Palace (pictured) in 1711, a two-story structure with a slate roof, and Peter moved there in 1712. By 1721, however, a second Winter Palace, designed by Georg Mattarnovy, was erected, and this was the building where Peter died in 1725. Trezzini, the architect who had designed the first Winter Palace, was hired to enlarge the second Winter Palace in 1727. It was completed a year later, about the time when the royal residence went back to Moscow.

When Empress Anna returned in 1732, however, she lived in Apraksin Palace, the palace of Admiral General Fyodor Matveyevich Apraksin. She hired Francesco Bartolomeo Rastrelli to redesign the house, as well as neighboring buildings, to create the fourth Winter Palace. Work continued on the project during the reign of Empress Elizabeth, a daughter of Peter the Great, who reigned from 1741-1762. That is why the exterior of the fourth Winter Palace was crafted in the Elizabethan Baroque style, which was named after her.

The remains, mostly a stone foundation, of the first Winter Palace were eventually incorporated into a building that was to be used as an art gallery. Catherine the Great reportedly had the second/third Winter Palace on the same site, which was in severe disrepair, torn down to make room for the art gallery, so only the fourth Winter Palace is still standing today. While the style of the interior of the Winter Palace has dramatically changed over time, the style of the exterior has not. It has, however, been repainted several times. In the original design, it was painted white with a pale yellow, which eventually became a darker yellow. In 1946 the familiar green and white colors replaced a red color that had been ordered by Nicholas I in 1837.
4. In which of the following styles of architecture was the first Winter Palace of Russia originally built?

Answer: Petrine Baroque

The Czars before Peter the Great preferred Byzantine architecture or Naryshkin Baroque, but Peter had been influenced by other styles during his travels. Unlike other European monarchs of the day, who wished to model their palaces after the Palace of Versailles, Peter wanted his residence to look more like the architecture he had seen in Amsterdam. He did, however, make some changes and Petrine Baroque is considered to be a mixture of the Dutch, Swedish, and Danish architecture of the time, amended by Peter's taste in art. Domenicao Trezzini lived in St. Petersburg from 1703-34, and designed many of the buildings designed in the Petrine Baroque style there.

Other buildings in St. Petersburg were to be built in the same style as Peter's palace, and some of the homes of the nobles were even grander in scale that the Czar's. Other structures still in existence today include the Peter and Paul Cathedral and the Twelve Colleges, both designed by Trezzini.
5. One of the only remaining mostly original features of the rococo interior of the Winter Palace of Russia is its main staircase. What is the name of this staircase, which was the focal point of an annual religious tradition?

Answer: Jordan Staircase

During the Feast of the Epiphany, during which Eastern Orthodox Christians celebrate Christ's baptism in the Jordan River, the Czar would walk down the Jordan Staircase and attend a ceremony called the Blessing of the Waters of the Neva River in St. Petersburg. The staircase, which was said to have been guarded by Cossacks, was also used by important guests who would visit the palace in order to make their way to state apartments on the second floor.

Originally designed by Francesco Bartolomeo Rastrelli, who served as the Senior Court Architect from 1730-1762, the staircase had to be reconstructed when destroyed by a fire in 1837. Rastrelli's plans were meticulously followed for the restoration project - except for the handrails and columns seen to the left of the picture. The handrails, now made of white marble, were originally gilt bronze; the gray marble columns were originally pink.
6. The Great Throne Room in the Winter Palace of Russia is also called St. George's Hall. What historic event took place there in 1906?

Answer: The first meeting of the Duma

After a fire in 1837, most of the interior of the Winter Palace had to be reconstructed. While the architect hired to redesign the interior, Vasily Stasov, restored some areas to their original design, and made some more ornate, in St. George's Hall a classical style that was much simpler than the neoclassical style that had previously been used to decorate the room was employed.

The painting pictured here presents a poignant contrast to the photograph taken there for the first meeting of Russia's Duma. Although the idea of a duma, an advisory group to government officials in Russia, was not new, the Czar had never agreed to the formation of a group that would limit his power. Facing the pressure of unrest, known as the 1905 Russia Revolution, Czar Nicholas II agreed to form the Duma, but retained his power to dismiss it at his own discretion. In fact, this first Duma was only allowed to meet from May-July in 1906 before it was dismissed. Other Dumas, however, were formed three more times before the outbreak of the Russian Revolution. Interestingly, the people who attended the meeting in 1906 were the first "ordinary people" who had been allowed inside the Winter Palace - except for those who worked there.
7. In 1837 the interior of the Winter Palace of Russia was almost totally destroyed by fire. Which of the following statements is true?

Answer: It allowed for the replacement of obsolete materials for better ones.

The architect, Auguste de Montferrand, was hired to begin a remodelling project on the interior of the Winter Palace in 1833. While the spread of the fire was blamed on him, as he had mostly used wood materials for the project, the cause of the fire was not the peasant workers; it was determined to have been caused by soot inflammation that had been made worse by some of de Montferrand's remodelling choices, such as enclosing old chimneys with wooden walls. Czar Nicholas I is credited with saving the art, as he ordered the construction of a firebreak that cut the art galleries off from the Winter Palace. After the fire was extinguished, he decreed that reconstruction begin immediately and completed within 12-15 months, depending on the source. The Winter Palace was, of course, the symbol of the power of the royal family, which had to be maintained.

Ironically, the fire did allow for the use of better materials in the rebuilding of the Winter Palace. The best techniques of the Industrial Revolution were employed, such as the use of a metal framework for the roof and iron girders for the ceilings of the rooms. Nicholas I had decreed that the interior must be reconstructed to its original appearance, however, the wood was replaced with stone and brick, and the Winter Palace was updated with running water and central heating. The reconstruction, however, exacted a heavy toll from the 6000 workers who were employed to carry out the Czar's orders. Many died, but were immediately replaced by others.
8. During which of the following conflicts was the Winter Palace used as a hospital?

Answer: World War I

So, by the time WWI began, the royal family had essentially moved out of the Winter Palace. When Nicholas II and Alexandra gave the Russian troops the traditional blessing from its balcony, plans had already been made to turn the building into a hospital. After Russian losses at the Battle of Tannenberg (August 1914) and the First Battle of the Masurian Lakes (September 1914), many of the wounded were relocated there. Rooms that had once been reserved for the Russian elite became nurses' quarters, operating rooms, a canteen, and the like. Unfortunately, Nicholas II made the decision to lead the troops at the front, leaving the unpopular Alexandra in charge, an unpopular choice with the people of St. Petersburg, as well as the royal family.

The Winter Palace was briefly the seat of the Provisional Government in 1917, and subsequently looted by the Bolsheviks. There is an interesting story about the pilfering of the wine cellars, and how the wine was piped to the Neva River so that all of the people could enjoy it. After the formation of the Soviet government, an effort was made to remove traces of imperial authority while preserving the treasures. During the WWII Siege of Leningrad, valuables, such as the Amber Room, were taken by the Nazis. In recent years the Russian Government has restored the symbols of Czarist Russia and the Winter Palace has become part of a famous museum complex.
9. Czar Nicholas II and his family were assassinated at the Winter Palace.

Answer: False

Even though the Winter Palace was the official residence of the Czar of Russia from 1712-1917, except for a brief period from 1728-30, it is estimated that in all that time it was only occupied for about 140 years. Alexander II (1855-1881) was the last Czar to actually live there; after his assassination his successor, Alexander III, was told that it would be impossible to make the complex a safe home for the royal family. Smaller, more secluded structures were chosen for habitation, and the Winter Palace was only used for official affairs.

Nicholas II and Alexandra married at the Winter Palace, as there was a strict protocol concerning the use of the Palace's Grand Church for royal weddings. While they occasionally resided at the Winter Palace, their favorite home was the Alexander Palace at Tsarskoe Selo, which was located about 15 miles from St. Petersburg. Ironically, when people marched on the Winter Palace on Bloody Sunday, January 22, 1905, they didn't even know that the Czar was not there.

In the picture, Nicholas II and Alexandra are seen blessing the troops in 1914. After the Russian Revolution began Czar and his family were eventually relocated to the town of Yekaterinburg, located in Western Siberia. They were executed there on July 17, 1918.
10. Today the Winter Palace of Russia is part of which complex?

Answer: Hermitage Museum

Catherine the Great was not only responsible for dramatically expanding the Winter Palace's art collection, but also for creating an area that was originally called the Hermitage. Influenced by the teachings of Jean Jacques Rousseau, she commissioned a French architect to build a new wing onto the existing Winter Palace that was to be a place where she could retreat - a hermitage. She is said to have chosen the name because it has been previously used by Czarina Elizabeth to describe her private rooms at the Winter Palace. The wing (known as the Small Hermitage) became so full of art that Catherine the Great commissioned a second addition (known as the Old or Great Hermitage) to the Winter Palace, and eventually, on the site of the first, second, and third Winter Palaces, built another addition, known as the Hermitage Theater. While the State Hermitage Museum is considered to have been founded in 1764 when Catherine purchased her first major collection, it was not open to the public until 1852, after Czar Nicholas I had commissioned the New Hermitage, which was constructed from 1842-1851 to house the growing art collection.

Today the State Hermitage Museum, which includes the Winter Palace, Small Hermitage, Old Hermitage, New Hermitage, and Hermitage Theater, is considered to be the second largest in the world - after the Louvre. It has been estimated that if a visitor planned on looking at every painting in the Hermitage Museum for one minute, it would take 11 years to complete the whole tour - that is, if the visitor did not take any time for eating or sleeping!
Source: Author ponycargirl

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