The “Botik of Peter the Great” is the grandfather of the Russian fleet. It was a child’s passion of Tsar Peter that turned Russia into a powerful maritime nation and laid the foundation for domestic shipbuilding.
The “Botik of Peter the Great”, also called “St. Nicholas”, was a miniaturized scaled-down warship discovered by Tsar Peter at the Royal Izmaylovo Estate in 1688. It was repaired by Karshten Brandt, and Peter learned to sail using the boat on waters near Moscow. It was stored in the Moscow Kremlin by Peter and later enshrined in St. Petersburg. Tsar Peter continued to use it in state ceremonies and ordered that the boat be sailed down the Neva River on August, 30 annually. It was also used in state ceremonies of later monarchs of Russia, including the wedding of Catherine the Great and Peter III, as well as the centenary of St. Petersburg. In the 1760s Empress Catherine built a boathouse to store the legendary boat.
The boat became less important under the Soviet rule, along with other cherished objects of the Russian Empire; however, the surge of patriotism raised during the outbreak of the World War I led to the renewal of the significance of Peter the Great and the Botik along with him. The Boat was enshrined to the Central Soviet Naval Museum where it remains to present day. In 1997 the Boat left Russia for the first time to be exhibited in the World Financial Center.
The series of the pins “The History of the Russian Fleet” was produced in the USSR in the late 1980s concurrently with the series of postage stamps of the same name. It has never been reproduced.
At present the number of the pins is limited and the series is considered to be a valuable collection.
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“Schooner St. Phocus” is a pin from the rare series “Russia Sets Sail”.
The pin represents a stylized image of a goldish roll of a sea chart with the contours of two hemispheres of vinous color and a schooner “St. Martyr Phocus” riding the waves from right to left.
The Schooner was a motor sailing vessel of Sedov’s expedition to the North Pole 1912-1914.
The text on the pin reads: “Schooner St. Phocus”, 1912”.
The pin represents a goldenly framed exhibition painting. The golden surface gives the frame a neutral character and matches the colors of the painting and its interior. In the center of the painting there is a three-masted battleship riding the waves from right to left. The naval flag of the Russian Empire is raised astern. The flag was named after Apostle Andrew, the saint patron of Russia.
The image on the pin is a replica of a Dutch artist Pieter Picart’s engraving of 1713.
The text on the pin reads: “Frigate Poltava, 1712”.
Rare metal pin “Moscow” made of aluminum alloy.
Fastening is on a safety pin. The method of painting is cold enamel.
The pin was made in the USSR in the late 1980s and was never reproduced.
The distinctive features of the rarity original pin are the manufacturer’s unique mark and stamped price on the back of the pin.
The pin is a valuable collector's item.