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St Ludmila’s skull to be part of Czech exhibition in Moscow

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Prague, Oct 11 (CTK) – Reliquaries from the 14th century and a 12th-century bronze candelabra are the oldest of over 100 items from the Czech St Vitus Treasure at an exhibition President Milos Zeman will open in Moscow, his spokesman Jiri Ovcacek told media on Wednesday, adding that St Ludmila’s skull will also be on display.

St Ludmila is a 9th-century princess from the Bohemian ruling Premyslid dynasty, grandmother of Czech patron saint St Wenceslas.

Zeman is to leave for Russia around November 20 at the invitation of his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin.

Apart from Sochi, which Putin invited Zeman to visit, he also plans to tour other places in Russia.

The exhibition, The Prague Castle Treasures, will be held in the history museum in the Red Square as an event reciprocating an exhibition on the Russian Romanov dynasty, which took place at Prague Castle in 2011.

Ovcacek said the exhibition will present the periods linked to the rule of the Premyslid, Luxembourg and Habsburg dynasties as well as the birth of Czechoslovakia. It will document the thousand-year development of the Prague Castle complex.

The rarest items on display in Moscow will include a set of clothes linked to St Ludmila and queens of Bohemia, Ovcacek said.

Czech Culture Ministry spokeswoman Simona Cigankova previously told CTK that the ministry had given the green light to the loaning of several artifacts belonging to the Catholic Church, including the 14-century Parler reliquary and a bust of St Ludmila, a 12th century bronze candelabra, a Renaissance kettle and an oriental bowl to Moscow.

In addition, the Prague Castle Administration’s application for the export of 55 items has been approved, Cigankova said, adding that all items are supposed to return home by March 31, 2018.

A total of 126 artifacts will be displayed, Ovcacek said.

He gave as examples a copy of Czech coronation jewels, architectonic elements and copies of plastic works by Petr Parler the 14th-century builder of Prague’s St Vitus Cathedral, and also items of everyday life.

“The Moscow visitors will also see Renaissance and Baroque tapestries, faience, China products and furniture. They will surely appreciate pictures featuring Maria Theresa with her family and Ferdinand V the Good, the last King of Bohemia crowned at Prague Castle in 1836,” Ovcacek said.

He said the large canvasses by Russian painter I.K. Ayvazovsky will definitely meet with admiration.

The costs of the exhibition will be jointly covered by the Moscow museum and the Prague Castle Administration.

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