An Orientalist and one of the first Russian archeologists to excavate in Samarkand and other points in Central Asia, Nikolai Ivanovich was one of the most productive and among the most familiar. In addition to Central Asia, he excavated in the Kuban region between the Black Sea and the Caucasus, and excavated the Maikop culture, a major find. He lectured at the Petersburg Archeological Institute, served on the IAK, and published widely. His best-known work was “Mosques of Central Asia” (1905).
Хведiр Вовк in Ukrainian, Fedor Volkov was a major political figure. When forced to leave in 1879, he ended up studying the anthropology of Cossacks and other Ukrainians, under the tutalege of Gabriel de Mortillet; he received his doctorate from the Sorbonne and was awarded the prestigious Paul Broca medal in paleontology. Still enjoying a reputation among Russian archeologists, especially those who included anthropology in the discipline, Anuchin presented his work at the 11th Congress. Volkov returned to work in St. Petersburg in 1905, and died in 1918, after sending his materials to Kyiv to begin to realize his dream of an independent Ukraine.
Her biographies tend to emphasize that she had inspired Lev Tolstoi’s Kitty Shcherbatskaia in “Anna Karenina,” but play down her role as the most formidable female scientist in Imperial Russia. To be fair, she always subjugated herself to her husband, Alexei, even for the 30 years following his death in which she organized the congresses, published the essays from them, developed the Caucasus Museum, and fought to open locally based museums of antiquities throughout the empire. She excavated and published extensively, and her first love were the Christian artefacts in the Caucasus. Professionalism in Russian archeology is unimaginable without her.
Ignatii Stelletskii, after graduating from the Kiev Spiritual Academy, took a position at the Nazareth teaching seminary in Palestine. From here he made an unconventional jump to the Moscow Archive of the Ministry of Justice, where Samokvasov took him under his mentorship in excavating kurgans. Stelletskii combined the two with a paper on “The Scythian Invasion of Palestine,” read at the 14th Congress. Indeed, Palestine provided his main area of expertise, though he does not appear to have returned. He presented an equally controversial paper at the 15th Congress, on his latest interest, searches for the city’s “underground,” searches that he continued in other cities. During the Great War he found himself on the Caucasian front, from which Marr and Uspenskii and others were conducting excavations; he was appointed director of the archeological department of the governor-generalship of the occupied Ottoman territories. On a side note, Stelletskii became obsessed with the “missing” library of Ivan the Terrible, which he carried over into his Soviet years.
Nikolai Vladimirovich came from a line who had been ennobled in 1674. His father abandoned the family in childhood, and he fell under the influence of his uncle, architect N. P. Miliukov, father to Paul. After graduating from the construction department of the Institute of Civil Engineers, he made a chance acquaintance with Count S. D. Sheremetov, which resulted in his designing the restorations of the estates for some of Russia’s most prominent families. As an archeologist, he was deeply interested in religious architecture, especially Byzantine and the so-called “False Russian.” Both are evident in his best known work, the Cathedral of Peter and Paul that he designed in 1892 at Peterhof. He also taught architectural history and published a textbook on it. His wife Ekaterina Pavlovna published short stories in “thick” journals and the couple, and their one son, entertained the spectrum of Russian literati. Interestingly, his cousin Paul enjoyed the company of Sultanov’s estranged father. Sutanov deprecated his cousin’s politics, but the two were on good terms.
His father a celebrated painter and his mother the niece of prominent Slavophile Ivan Aksakov, Vladimir Konstantinovich became a numismatist and Orientalist, studying eastern languages, specializing in Arabic, at the Lazaervskii Institute. He held numerous positions of importance, the most important being custodian of the Armoury. At the IMAO, he held the post of secretary from 1888 and chair of the East Commission from 1911. He was also secretary of numerous Congresses, and sat on the organizing committee of all, beginning with the 7th in Iaroslavl, through the 16th in Pskov, which never came to pass.
Leonid Mikhailovich took tremendous pride in his noble heritage, and became the premier scholar of geneology, invited to work in the Moscow Archive of the Ministry of the Imperial Court and lecturing on the subject at the local Archeological Institute, and on the planning committee to build a museum to commerate 1812. As a political figure, he was a state councillor, a chamberlain, and the last governor of Kholm Province. Leaving Russia after 1917, he lived in Athens, Belgrade, and Ann Arbor. Wherever he went, he established a Russian Geneological Society
Smirnov’s most notable role was as the curator of the medieval section of the Hermitage, 1897-1918. His most remarkable find was the reproductions of the series of drawings of Kiev drawn by Dutch artist Abraham Van Westerfeld for the Lithuanian Hetman Janusz Radziwill in 1651, during the uprising launched by Bogdan Khmelnytskii, Hetman of the Zaporozhian Cossacks. Smirnov presented on this at the 13th congress in Ekaterinoslav. In 1918, he died of starvation, which M. I. Rostovtsev said made him the first victim of the Bolsheviks from this circle.
Nikolai Pokrovskii pioneered in church architecture as a field in archeology. His Master’s on “The Origin of the Ancient Christian Basilica” established the basis for what would become a major archeological question, that is, how did church art and architecutre relate to liturgy. His interest in Orthodoxy meant that he also became a Byzantinist. Moreover, he was a founding member of the monarchist political party “The Russian Assembly” in 1900.
A lightning rod for many issues, Samokvasov levied his influence at a number of the archeological congresses. He combined his positions as director of the Archive of the Moscow Ministry of Justice with that of law professor at the University of Warsaw, and one of the most creative archeologists of the Stone Age. A devoted monarchist, he belonged to the ultra-conservative Union of Russian People after 1905.