A unique collection of the Radziwill family has opened in Minsk. A descendant of the magnates - Prince Maciej Radziwill - has brought almost a hundred exhibits of the noble family. These include portraits, engravings and lithographs of the XIX century.
Among the most remarkable is the 4-meter Slutsk belt and decorative fabric made at the Slutsk-based Radziwill manufactory. To take them from Poland, the owner had to obtain a special permission.
Maciej Radziwill, heir of the Radziwill Family:
There are pictures that hung in my parents' rooms when I was a boy, my grandmother and other relatives. They are the most valuable for me. But the oldest portrait is the one of Cardinal Jerzy Radziwill of the XVI century.
The descendant of the Radziwill family began collecting these items in the 1990s. He had to get them at auctions all over the world. And today they are stored in Poland, in Warsaw's house of pan Maciej, which itself is like a museum. The exhibition represents only a small part of a rare collection of artifacts. It is placed in two halls: the first is the collection of Maciej and the second is of the National Art Museum. The National Library of Belarus added its rare printed books and photos of the Radziwills.
Perhaps the most important exhibit is this copy of the family genealogical tree. Every 10 years the Radziwills contribute new information to the history of their origin. The history of 20 generations of the princely family was brought to Minsk specifically as a gift to the National Art Museum.