National Library of Montenegro “Đurđe Crnojević” has got the first 10 volumes of the extremely valuable and precious edition – facsimile of the Illustrated Chronicle of Ivan the Terrible. Our library is one of a few institutions to whom the donor, Mr. German Sterligov, president of the Society of Lovers of Ancient literature from Moscow, gave the Illustrated Chronicle of Ivan the Terrible. The first 10 volumes arrived to the Library on April the 2nd of 2012., and each volume that follows will arrive after its publication. There will be around 40 volumes in total.
This ancient manuscript, whose original name is ” Litsevoi letopisnyi svod XVI veka” (Лицевой ЛетописнЬій Свод царя Ивана Грозного) has enormous artistic and historical value and it’s considered a national relic in Russia. Chronicle covers a multitude of ancient historical and biblical texts, written and illustrated by hand of Russian craftsmen, that were collected from ancient times to the 16th century, and served for the Russian youth education in all known areas of knowledge.
Collection of handwritten texts in the form of illustrated manuscript chronicle, was initiated in the 16th century by the Russian Tsar Ivan IV Vasilijevic, named as Ivan the Terrible. At the beginning of the 16th century, he formed a printing house in Moscow and printed religious books in traditional Russian alphabet, the same as the Montenegrin ruler Crnojevic did here in Montenegro.
Thanks to the Mr. Germanu Sterligov, this anthology will now be available to scientists in Montenegro, especially to the Slavists and lovers of old manuscripts. The motives and colors of the numerous illustrations give a specific value to this facsimile.
We know with certainty that the Illustrated Chronicle of Ivan the Terrible will cause a lot of interest and that this will be the occasion for many devotees of Russian culture to visit the National Library in Cetinje and become familiar with the treasure that it holds.