A unique family album of the Radziwills has appeared in Mir Castle. A collection of the well-known Belarusian family now adorns the portrait hall. For the first time, Belarusians saw these paintings in May 2014 at an exhibition.
Over the past 17 months, the museum management has been negotiating with the owner of the collection Prince Constantin Hohenlohe-Schillingsfürst to buy the collection.
The Austrian citizen, an engineer by profession, had inherited a palace in Bavaria and an exclusive gallery of the Radziwill family.
Most portraits are copies, originally from the 19th and 18th centuries. While now copies are considered to be something of a lower class, in the old days it was real art. Portraits were virtually indistinguishable from the originals. Unfortunately now the ancient technique has been lost.
The Radziwill family consisted of 10-12 children, and everyone wanted to have a portrait of a loved one. Therefore, the famous dynasty often ordered several copies. The value of the collection is that the Radziwill Family at various times owned Mir Castle, besides, the paintings differ significantly from the Nesvizh collection, where the portraits are oval and are lined with a wreath of laurel.
In the 15th century, there was a remarkable moment: the Radziwill family started the tradition of naming their firstborns Nicholas. But since there were so many Nicholases, they then received nicknames "Old", "Black", "Sirotka" and so on.