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27-31 August 2019
Poznań, Poland
Europe/Warsaw timezone
programme last update: 23 August 2019
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Contribution Paper

Poznań, Poland - Morasko Kampus, room: 2.100

Culture of the Botocudos of Brazil in the collections of the participants of the Second Russian Expedition to South America (1914-1915).


  • Dr. Elena SOBOLEVA

Primary authors

  • Dr. Elena SOBOLEVA (Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) RAS)



Participants of the Second Russian Expedition to South America 1914-1915 brought to Russia rich collections. Only to the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of the Russian Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg they delivered more than 500 items that characterize traditional cultures of more than ten South American Indian groups. They were registered by the collectors and formed part of the permanent exhibition. Young scientists collected and processed the artifacts for different scientific institutions that contributed to the organization and success of this expedition. Heinrich Maniser spent seven months in 1915 among the Botocudos in Espírito Santo and Minas Gerais (Brazil), gathered a small collection that characterizes the everyday life of different groups of this nomadic people. He transferred duplicate Botocudo collections to the Museo Etnográfico Juan B. Ambrosetti of the University of Buenos Aires (Argentina), to the National Museum in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and to the Anthropological Museum of the Moscow State University. These objects allowed to attribute the collections by the participants of the First Russian Expedition to Brazil under Academician Georg Heinrich von Langsdorff, 1821-1829, kept in several Russian and Brazilian museums. Maniser summarized his detailed notes on the Botocudos, illustrated by precise drawings, and his minimonographic description was published in French (1919). The system of sharing the duplicate collections between different museums allows to reconstruct traditional cultures. That is especially important after the loss of the treasures of the Museu Nacional in Rio de Janeiro (Brasil) in the fire of 2018.