Moscow is one of the oldest and one of the most beautiful Russian cities. The city has absorbed many different styles that strike the visitors with their variety. The great number of churches and cathedrals in the Russian capital amuses Moscow visitors.You are a lucky person, you have a good chance to know more about this great city, which is as beautiful as ever, despite all crises and misfortunes! Cyprus travel agency DejaviewTravel is the best starting point for your Moscow travel. Read it, enjoy it and feel happy and confident.
Moscow is one of the oldest and one of the most beautiful Russian cities. The city has absorbed many different styles that strike the visitors with their variety. The great number of churches and cathedrals in the Russian capital amuses Moscow visitors.
Magnificent stone churches and cathedrals with multiple golden, blue and white domes towering everywhere over all other buildings and structures. Even in the heart of Moscow, in the Kremlin, old churches compete with the immense Congress Palace for space. Despite its size (about 900 square kilometers) and the scale of many of Moscow buildings and avenues, the general layout is easily grasped – a series of concentric circles and radial lines, emanating from the Kremlin – and the center is compact enough to explore on foot. We display everything required by any traveler who plans a trip to our wonderful city.
St. Basil’s Cathedral
The famous St. Basil’s Cathedral was commissioned by Ivan the Terrible and built on the edge of Red Square between 1555 and 1561. Legend has it that on completion of the church the Tsar ordered the architect, Postnik Yakovlev, to be blinded to prevent him from ever creating anything to rival its beauty again.
(He did in fact go on to build another cathedral in Vladimir despite his ocular impediment!) The cathedral was built to commemorate Ivan the Terrible’s successful military campaign against the Tartar Mongols in 1552 in the besieged city of Kazan. Victory came on the feast day of the Intercession of the Virgin, so the Tsar chose to name his new church the Cathedral of the Intercession of the Virgin on the Moat, after the moat that ran beside the Kremlin. The church was given the nickname “St. Basil’s” after the “holy fool” Basil the Blessed (1468-1552), who was hugely popular at that time with the Muscovites masses and even with Ivan the Terrible himself.
St. Basil’s was built on the site of the earlier Trinity Cathedral, which at one point gave its name to the neighboring square.
Statue to Minin and Pozharsky
In the small garden outside St. Basil’s stands an impressive bronze Statue to Minin and Pozharsky, who rallied Russia’s volunteer army during the Time of Troubles and drove out the invading Polish forces. They were an interesting duo – Dmitry Pozharsky was a prince, while Kuzma Minin was a butcher from Nizhny Novgorod.
The statue was designed by the artist I. Martos and erected in 1818 as the city’s first monumental sculpture. It originally stood in the center of Red Square in front of what is now the GUM Department Store, with Minin symbolically indicating to Pozharsky that the Poles were occupying the Kremlin and calling for its liberation.
The Arbat is a true symbol of old Moscow, and has recently celebrated its 500th anniversary. Its name is first mentioned in the city chronicles of 1493. In that year the whole city was engulfed in a terrible fire, sparked by a candle in the Church of St. Nicholas in Peski, which is situated on the Arbat. This disaster led to the well-known saying: ‘A penny candle razed Moscow to the ground.’ However, from the second half of 18th century the Arbat became the most aristocratic quarter of the city, just like Prechistenka.
It was often described as the St. Germain of Moscow, and the Muscovite intelligentsia settled in this area. The Arbat and Prechistenka have much in common in their history and character. There have never been any factories here, nor any workers’ huts, and there were no taverns or bazaars.
Muscovites used to say: ‘For money, go to Zamoskvorechye, for a career, go to St. Petersburg, but for knowledge and memories, go to the Arbat.’ The area between the Arbat and Prechistenka takes us back to the unique world of quiet lanes where each house is still steeped in the atmosphere of old Moscow.