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The Fall of Novgorod

The Fall of Novgorod

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Klaudii Vasilievich Lebedev

The Fall of Novgorod depicts the capture of the City of Novgorod by Ivan III in 1478. Ivan had the city bell—a symbol of self-governance by the citizens—taken down and transported to Moscow. In the painting Marfa Boretskaya, the mayor's widow and leader of the resistance, stands in silent outrage as Ivan's troops remove the bell and shackle her partisans. Klaudii Lebedev paints the wintry, gray, snow-covered day of the victory of the Muscovites and lavishes attention on the details of dress in the spirit of historical accuracy.
Klaudii Vasilievich Lebedev
(Russian, 1852 - 1916)
The Fall of Novgorod
Oil on canvas
64 3/8 x 101 3/4 in. Overall
Gift of Joseph E. Davies
Accession No.


1937, purchased in U.S.S.R. [now Russia] by Joseph E. Davies [ambassador to U.S.S.R.] (Washington, DC); 1937, gifted to University of Wisconsin – Madison; 1967, transferred to Elvehjem Art Center [now called Chazen Museum of Art]

  • Bowlt, John E. "Soviet Paintings in the Joseph E. Davies Collection." Elvehjem Museum of Art Bulletin, 1976-1977. Elvehjem Museum of Art (1977): 34-42.
  • Alumni Association of the University of Wisconsin of the City of New York. "The Joseph E. Davies Collection of Russian Paintings and Icons Presented to The University of Wisconsin." New York: Alumni Association of the University of Wisconsin of the City of New York, 1938. pp. 44-45, 48, no. 74; pl. 74
  • Elvehjem Museum of Art. "Handbook of the Collection." Elvehjem Museum of Art, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Madison, 1990. no. 99
  • Chazen Museum of Art. "Artscene." Vol. 22, No. 2, May 2005 Special Edition. back cover
  • Elvehjem Art Center. Elvehjem Art Center Annual Report. "Bulletin 1975-1976". Madison, WI: Elvehjem Art Center, 1976 p. 2

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