In 2008 is fulfilled 120 years of the foundation of the Moscow Numismatic Society (MNS). Neither in pre-Revolutionary Russia nor in our days of its history both our own country's and foreign historiographies give to this fact any sufficiently serious or profound consideration for a number of objective and subjective reasons.
The Moscow Numismatic Society wich came into existence in the last quarter of the 19th centure is an example of collectivly composed organization of like-minded persons as regards their passion for numismatics and collecting, in whose activities the best features of Russian cultural idea prevailing in that epoch found their reflection. The acting present Moscow Numismatic Society continues to develop glorious taditions that were laid by its founders in the basis of its activities in those remote years.
The MNS had its predecessor the Moscow numismatics study group (MNG) wich finally took shape as an amateur association in 1885 formed by the then well-known Moscow numismatists and among them were A.V. Oreshnikov, A.M. Podshivalov, A.A. Tretiakov and others. Their business-like energetic efforts and purposeful work helped rally round this main body a considerable group of Moscow numismatists and collectors who succesfully carried on research activities and formulated the organization's rules wich resulted in the establishment of the Moscow Numismatic Society in 1888.
Speaking of the MNS activities for the past 120 years it should be pointed out that these activities as a whole were not, over the past years, as simple and untroubled as imagined by the MNS founders in the distant year 1888 and during the first years of Society's existence. If three initial decades of the period of its existens were normal, after the coup d'?tat of 1917 the work of MNS in the following seven decades was the time of serious difficulties and severe ordeal for amateur numismatists. In that time the MNS was actually banned and it was obligated to lead an illegal way of life. More of that commencing from 1918 private collections in Russia and above all the collecting of precious metal coins and medals were most strictly prohibited. In such conditions after 1918 the activities of MNS were suspended and this situation has continued practically up to 1987.
In a such shot story it is rather difficult to tell about all the difficulties and juridical restrictions wich Moscow and all Russian collectors were clashing with during the time since 1918 up to 1987.
The Society legalization and the commencement of its functioning as a city public organization has happened in 1987. In March 1987 the Moscow Numismatic Society attained at last its official status and has begun to work as a nornal organization of amateur-numismatists.
All that the Society was able to achieve for the past two decades was a result of the work accomplished by its leadership and active members. It is regrettable to say that no real assistance or support had ever come to the MNS either from the city authorities or any other sources.
At present, functioning on an official basis, the Moscow Numismatic Society arranges regular meetings for collectors-numismatists, organizes numismatical annual exhibitions, publishes different publications on mumismatical subjects, makes memorial medals and badges with the MNS symbols. Up to-day MNS has published 15 numismatical sborniks and soe pamphlets, has made 22 medals, badges and tokens.
During these years the MNS has established working contacts with the personnel of the numismatic departments in the leading museums of Moscow, some Russian cities and some foreign organizations. Since 2006, MNS is a member of the International Numismatic Comission. Having restored its legitimate right to be a continuer and full fledged successor as regards the cause and traditions of the pre-Revolutionary Moscow Numismatic Society, the MNS is firmly determined to further and develop to-day too, these activities beneficial for society and Moscow's culture. It's members are expected to accomplish a complicated work in converting the society into a well-established amateur organization capable to carry on large-scale and purposeful cultural-enlightenment, educational and scientific research activities with a view to organize interesting and entertaining leisure not only for the members of its own collective, but also for amateur numismatists in other Russian cities. The energy, desire and striving of the Society's members to make its work more versatile, purposeful and fruitful may serve as a guarantee of its further succesful advancement in this direction with a view to develop Russian numismatics useful both for moscovities and all amateur collectors in Russia.
President of the Board of MNS
Doctor of History,