CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

Koninklijk Oudheidkundig Genootschap (KOG)

Royal Antiquarian Society


The Royal Antiquarian Society (KOG) was founded in 1858 by a group of private individuals in Amsterdam. The aim was to build up a representative collection of objects relating to Dutch history, art, and applied arts to boost knowledge of, and insight into, national and local antiquities. The new society was seen as a necessity above all because neither the national nor the local authorities had adopted good regulations to prevent antiquities being sold to foreign collectors or lost altogether through neglect. This was many years before the founding of the Government Department for the Preservation of Monuments and Historic Buildings.

The KOG’s collection is extremely varied, and many of its objects are on loan to diverse museums. Since 1885, a large proportion of the collection has been preserved in the Rijksmuseum. In addition, KOG loans are exhibited on a long-term basis at about 30 other Dutch heritage institutions. Twelve committees operate within the KOG, each managing a specific section of the collection.

The key masterpieces of the KOG’s collection include a writing or money box with an image of Peter the Great’s son, made by an anonymous craftsman in the Zaanstreek region in the rough period 1685–1700, bridal gloves dating from around 1600, and a group sculpture in oak of Saint Ursula and her Virgins, produced by an anonymous Northern Netherlandish sculptor around 1525. All three of these objects are displayed on loan at the Rijksmuseum.

Previous events since 1999