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Carl Johann Tegelsten (1798-1852)

Bell 1849

RCIN 46101

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A silver model of the so-called Tsar Bell or Tsarsky Kolokol, decorated with figures of portraits of Tsar Aleksei and Tsarina Anna, angels and saints, and with the broken piece outlined.

The renowned Tsar Bell or Tsarsky Kolokol, the largest bell ever cast in bronze, was the third bell to be created for the Tower of the Kremlin. Each successive casting reused the bronze from its predecessor. The third bell, which was first designed in 1733, was cast in Moscow, only a short distance from its current location. It was raised out its casting pit but the wooden staves holding it in place were destroyed by fire in 1737. The bell fell back into its founding pit and a piece of the bell broke off; it remained there for a further century until it was raised and placed on a stone plinth in 1836. This remarkable work, astonishing in its size and symbolic endurance, was repeatedly copied in silver. The most notable models were those created by Ignatii Sazikov.

Struck with city mark of St Petersburg (1849), assayer's mark (only partly visible), and maker's mark of Carl Tegelsten; engraved inside bell, 1851 [?rod]; Febr. 26.