Talk:GUM (department store)

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GUM's history[edit]

The first two paragraphs about the building's history make no chronological sense. First, it talks about the late-19th century building (the current one), then it talks about Catherine the Great about 100 years earlier, then a sudden mention of a 3rd building that existed between Catherine's and the current one, designed by some Joseph Bove? I'm not questioning these facts. I'm just pointing out that these two paragraphs are confusing, because they were not written in chronological order. The source that this information was taken from is a Russian-language website. Can a Russian speaker give that website a fresh look, and edit these two paragraphs, so that they make sense? Skyduster (talk) 04:48, 9 April 2012 (UTC)


Gum!? Who would call it "Gum?"

It's an acronym, think CREEP. 04:30, 11 February 2006 (UTC)

The article talks about several stores within the building. Wouldn't that make it a mall, not a department store?

Perhaps it would now be classed as a "mall" (in America at least), but when it was built, Russia (or the USSR as it was) was under communism, so it was just one big, state run, department store containing all that the government thought that the people would want to buy. Of course, with the collapse of the soviet republic, and the fairly rapid introduction of capitalism, many different brands and shops have moved into the GUM building (in Moscow). So really, times have changed since the building was built, but it still reatins, to an extent, its old charcter of being one big shop, although it is now split up between brands. Martinp23 20:07, 14 September 2006 (UTC)


About ten years ago, during a game of Trivial Persuit, I responded to the question "What is the largest department store in the world?" with GUM. The "correct" response was, of course, "Macy's, NYC". I still think I'm right. The article could benefit from some actual size information -- square footage, etc. And a comparison to Macy's probably wouldn't be unencyclopedic. —  MusicMaker5376 17:01, 14 March 2008 (UTC)

Probably Macy's. But it's also a "mall" - indoor covered with different shops - maybe a bit smaller than the old Marshall Fields store in downtown Chicago.

Smallbones (talk) 04:34, 28 August 2008 (UTC)

What did GUM formerly stand for?[edit]

Currently only the present explanation of the abbreviation is given, as "Main Department Store". Later in the article it is mentioned that the "G" in the name formerly stood for "Gosudarstvennyj", but that word is not translated into English nor shown in Russian characters anywhere in the article. --Metropolitan90 (talk) 19:23, 13 September 2008 (UTC)

State Universal Store.--Dojarca (talk) 03:45, 10 November 2008 (UTC)

Party officials only?[edit]

I'd always heard that GUM was only open to officials of the Communist Party and their families, etc. Any truth to that? (talk) 02:32, 5 August 2012 (UTC)

@ No, just the "Section 200", a special section of it, where the BOSCO Bar now is placed. --YOMAL SIDOROFF-BIARMSKII (talk) 22:52, 15 June 2015 (UTC)

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One of the few stores in the Soviet Union that did not have shortages of consumer goods[edit]

Really? I remember visits there in the 1970s, and like any other store at the time, you couldn't actually buy anything. The TV department had a single color TV on display with hoards of kids crowded around watching it, but you couldn't buy one. The jewelry department had a watch display case full of not watches, but pictures of watches. You could buy shoes but the prices were higher than black market. You would go there to hang out and eat cucumber salad in the snack bar, not to buy. I don't remember lines to get in, but there were lines at any of the few departments that had anything to sell. Kendall-K1 (talk) 02:08, 22 December 2013 (UTC)