Huge international history festival takes place in Moscow

Posted on on 12 June 2014
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The fourth annual Times and Epochs international historical festival has been held in the Russian capital, with '1914-2014' as the theme.

Held on the 8th June this year, the festival focused on the Centenary of the First World War, with large scale re-enactments and mock battles.

Men dressed as German and Russian soldiers from the conflict clashed, as simulated shells exploded in the background, cavalry charged forward and armoured vehicles trundled around the battlefield.

The First World War has sat uncomfortably in Russian history. The Bolsheviks who seized power in 1917 - effectively ending Russia's involvement in the war - dubbed the conflict an "imperialist war" fought amongst the capitalists.

Furthermore, years of civil war in Russia followed its exit from the First World War. Coupled with the later events of the twentieth century, including the Second World War, these factors have led to the First World War being overshadowed in the narrative of Russia's history.

However, there have been some announcements regarding national plans to commemorate the Centenary.

The Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, Dmitry Medvedev, ordered the creation of an "organising committee" to oversee Centenary plans in March 2013.

Other initiatives at regional levels, such as the erection of a First World War monument in Kaliningrad and the restoration of memorials in Moscow, suggest that there is some appetite to commemorate the conflict.

The Times and Epochs festival has been running since 2011, when the theme was Ancient Russia, 2012 saw Moscow's predecessor Muscovy explored, with the 2013 festival exploring Russia during the Middle Ages.

Source: Times and Epochs

Images courtesy of Times and Epochs

Posted by: Daniel Barry, Centenary News