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An UNtroubled Age. Childhood in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania

13 October 2022–15 January 2023
Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania

An international exhibition dedicated to the history of the phenomenon of childhood in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth

Exhibition curators
Dr. Rasa Leonavičiūtė-Gecevičienė, Rita Lelekauskaitė-Karlienė, Marijus Uzorka 
 

In all times, children were a treasured and inseparable part of the family, however the phenomenon of childhood itself underwent a number of changes over the ages. From “invisible” little ones in society to infants in family portraits, from society criticising mothers who were too attached to their offspring to acknowledgement of the child as an individual, a person that must be nurtured in every way – children gradually found their place not only in the private, immediate and extended family space, but in the public – state – space as well. We invite visitors to this exhibition to return briefly to this untroubled age and experience what it meant to be a child in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.

The exhibition consists of four parts arranged according to theme and chronology, featuring almost 300 objects: portraits, graphic art works and drawings, manuscripts, textbooks and publications released to mark special occasions, archaeological artefacts, children’s clothing and accessories, furniture, toys and toy weapons, learning materials and other historical artefacts relating to childhood. Themes including awaiting the birth of the infant, birth, survival and loss, upbringing, care, health, clothing, education, entertainment, participation in public life and social roles are all presented. Many of the objects still surviving today reflect the experiences of children from the highest layer of society, that is, those of magnates and rulers, however this exhibition also represents another aspect – the less privileged and often harsh childhood of abandoned children. Visitors will easily recognise universally important things in children’s lives, regardless of their epoch: the things needed when caring for an infant, child-sized furniture, toys and books that no generation could do without.

 


2022-10-07
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