Description of the attraction
St. Basil's Cathedral is an Orthodox church in the center of Moscow, the full name of which sounds like Cathedral of the Intercession of the Most Holy Theotokos on the Moat … Monument of Russian architecture of the 16th century. is located on Red Square and is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The cathedral is a complex of eleven churches on a single basement, among which the central one is consecrated in honor of the Intercession of the Virgin.
History of the construction of the cathedral
On October 2, 1552, the Kazan campaigns of Tsar Ivan the Terrible were crowned with success. Kazan fell and the Kazan Khanate became part of the Moscow state. This happened the day after the Intercession. During the entire military campaign, wooden churches were built on Red Square, where military victories over the Tatars were glorified. Grozny ordered to gather the "marching" temples together and erect a stone cathedral in the center of Moscow.
Initially, the temple was built of wood and consecrated on October 1, 1554. A few months later, a stone cathedral was laid in its place, completed by the end of the summer of 1561. The name of the architect who created the project and carried out its implementation is still unknown.… Historians put forward three versions, each of which has the right to exist.
Some researchers believe that St. Basil's Cathedral was built by a Pskov bricklayer Postnik Yakovlevoften called Barmoy … Others believe that Barma and Yakovlev are different people and both of them took part in construction work. Finally, the third version is that the cathedral was built by an Italian … The Moscow state already had an experience of such cooperation: in the second half of the XIV century. Aristotle Fioravanti worked on the Assumption Cathedral, and Marko Fryazin and Pietro Antonio Solari - on the Faceted Chamber.
Initially, the cathedral contained only nine churches, but in 1588 a tenth was added to it. It was consecrated in honor of St. Basil the Blessed. The Moscow holy fool possessed the gift of foresight and performed many miracles. John the Terrible was afraid of Basil the Blessed, rightly considering him "a seer of human hearts and thoughts." In 1588 the Blessed One was canonized, and the tenth church appeared on the place of his burial.
At the end of the XVI century. instead of the domes lost in the fire, new figured domes were installed at the cathedral. The hipped bell tower was added in the 1670s, at the same time a chapel appeared over the grave of John the Blessed. He was buried in Red Square in 1589.
Throughout the existence of the cathedral, there have been many restorations. Most often, repair work was the result of fires that raged in Moscow very often in those years. For example, in 1737 St. Basil's Cathedral was almost completely burned out after the Trinity fire. Large-scale reconstruction was carried out at the end of the 19th century., when the floors in the churches were reinforced and the sacristy was decorated with stained-glass windows.
After the revolution, the temple was transferred to the museum department, and after the victory in the Great Patriotic War, they began to restore … The restorers discovered 16th century murals imitating brick under the layers of paint and returned the original appearance to the outer walls of the temple. The last campaign to repair the building took place in 2001. As a result, the interiors of ten churches of the cathedral were restored, the icon of the Intercession of the Virgin was restored and services are now held in the church.
What to see in St. Basil's Cathedral
First of all, it is worth approaching the burial place of the saint, whose name the entire cathedral bears. According to the chroniclers, "miracles were performed from his grave in the year of death," and therefore the emperor ordered to cover burial place of Basil the Blessed silver crayfish and inlay it with semi-precious stones. The relics are in the chapel of St. Basil the Blessed, the walls and ceiling of which are painted with oil, and the floor is covered with slabs of Kasli casting. The frescoes depict scenes from the life of the saint and show the viewer portraits of the patron saints of the reigning house. The southern wall is occupied by a rare icon of the Vladimir Mother of God. Cancer is covered with a golden cover, woven in the workshop of Queen Irina Godunova.
Other churches of the cathedral are dedicated to saints, especially revered Ivan the Terrible. Important events and victories during the Kazan campaigns took place in the days of their memory:
- In the southeastern part is located Alexander Svirsky church, on the day of memory of which the Russian army defeated the cavalry on the Arsk field. The church is small, its height is only 15 meters, and the area is less than 13 square meters. m. Particular attention is drawn to the ceiling masonry: a spiral is laid out on the dome, symbolizing eternity. The icons in the church of Alexander Svirsky are dated to the 16th-18th centuries.
- Novgorod Saint Varlaam of Khutynsky is mentioned in the name of the southwestern small church … He was the founder of the Transfiguration of the Savior Khutynsky Monastery, and the father of the Terrible, the Grand Duke of Vladimir and Moscow Vasily III, took his name, performing his dying tonsure. Varlaam Khutynsky was considered the patron saint of the royal family. A particularly valuable icon in the church is "The Vision of the Sexton Tarasius", written in the 16th century. and depicting a scene from the life of a Novgorod saint.
- In honor of the feast of the Lord's Entry into Jerusalem, the western church of the cathedral was consecrated. The people associated with this holiday the return of the Russian army after the victory over the Kazan Khanate. The side-altar served as a place for the celebration of Palm Sunday. The church is large, and its decoration is very solemn. The iconostasis appeared in 1770 - it was moved from the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in the Kremlin. The images tell about the creation of the world and represent the life of Alexander Nevsky.
- In the name of Saint Gregory, the famous enlightener of Armenia, the north-western side-altar of the cathedral was built … On the day of his memory in 1552, the Arskaya tower was taken in Kazan. The interior of the 16th century has been preserved in the church, and the vestments of the priest are displayed in the window. It is worth paying attention to an enamel lamp and a portable lantern made in the 17th century.
- The troops of Ivan the Terrible took Kazan by storm on the Day of Remembrance of Christian Martyrs Cyprian and Justina. The northern church was consecrated in their honor. At the end of the 18th century. its walls were decorated with oil painting. The frescoes depict scenes from the lives of the martyrs. The floor in the side-chapel is paved with white stone; the iconostasis was carved from wood in 1780.
- On the opposite side, in the southern part of the cathedral, the church is consecrated in honor of the icon of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, found on the Velikaya River in Khlynov. In 1555 the Velikoretsky icon was carried through all the lands annexed to the Muscovy. The side-altar of the Velikoretsky image of Nicholas the Wonderworker is famous for the wall letter made in 1737. The central images of the iconostasis are the Savior Almighty, the Mother of God on the throne and St. Nicholas the Wonderworker. The church has preserved a section of the original floor covering. The fragment consists of oak sticks and dates from the 16th century.
- Historians believe that St. Basil's Cathedral was built on the site of the ancient Trinity Church. This hypothesis is confirmed by consecration of the eastern chapel in honor of the Holy Trinity. The iconostasis in the church deserves special attention: it has unusually low royal doors and three-row icons. Among them is the "Old Testament Trinity", which is especially revered by believers. The image was painted in the 16th century. It is worth paying attention to the decorative decoration of the church. A spiral can be seen in the vault of the dome. The symbol of eternity is lined with red bricks.
- The Tatar prince Yapanchi was defeated by Ivan the Terrible on the day of memory of the Patriarchs of Constantinople Alexander, John and Paul the New. The chapel in the northeast was consecrated in honor of the Three Patriarchs … On the dome of the chapel, you can see the painting "The Savior Not Made by Hands", and on the second tier of the walls - the continuation of the theme of the Savior and scenes from the lives of the patriarchs.
- In 1552on the day of the Protection of the Most Holy Theotokos, the assault on Kazan began, crowned with the success of the troops of Ivan the Terrible. The central church was consecrated in 1561 in honor of this event. The tallest among the side-altars of the cathedral, the Church of the Intercession was built in the form of a pillar resting on an octagonal base … Its iconostasis consists of images taken from the church of the Chernigov miracle workers dismantled in 1770. To the right of the iconostasis, you can see oil painting dating from the 19th century.
- The harmonious architectural ensemble of the Cathedral of the Intercession of the Most Holy Theotokos on the Moat is completed by the bell tower, which was built in 1680. on the site of the belfry that originally existed and is pretty dilapidated. The open area of the bell tower has an octal shape and rests on a massive quadrangular base on the plan. An octagonal tent crowns the platform with bells. The sides and edges of the tent are decorated with tiles of different colors. The head in the form of an onion is crowned with a cross. 19 cathedral bells were cast in the 17th-19th centuries. The weight of some reaches 2.5 tons.
- Worthy of attention galleries and cathedral porches with brick floors laid out in the 16th century. (part of the bricks survived), mica lanterns of the 17th century. with multi-domed tops, floral carpets and carved stone vaults.
Legends of St. Basil's Cathedral
The history of the construction and existence of the temple has overgrown with many legends, which even historians cannot confirm or deny. For example, there is a legend that Ivan the Terrible ordered to blind Postnik and Barmaso that they could not repeat a cathedral of such beauty. In fact, Postnik took part in the construction of the Kremlin in Kazan, which took place much later. Another legend tells that for a long tongue the architect was sent to the dungeons. Drunk, he boasted that he would build a temple even better than the cathedral on Red Square.
Special coloring of domes - also a mystery for researchers of the historical chronicle. There is a version that the cathedral owes such a riot of colors to Andrew the Fool, who saw in a dream Heavenly Jerusalem with many gardens and flowering trees. Andrew the Fool was a saint of ascetics and the Russian Church closely associates the Feast of the Intercession with his name.
Jerusalem theme flickers in the description of the temple is not accidental, because another legend says that Metropolitan Macarius in the first third of the XVI century. planned to build a cathedral in Moscow with many side-chapels on one foundation, symbolizing Heavenly Jerusalem.
A beautiful legend exists and about fundraising for construction. Vasily the Blessed asked for money … The holy fool brought the collected coins to the square and threw them over his right shoulder. Even the beggars did not touch them, and when Basil the Blessed felt an imminent death, he gave the money to the tsar.
On a note
- Location: Moscow, Red Square. Tel. +7 (495) 698-33-04
- The nearest metro stations are Okhotny Ryad, Teatralnaya and Ploschad Revolyutsii.
- Official site: branch of the Historical Museum www.shm.ru
- Opening hours in 2019: From November 8 to April 30, daily from 11:00 to 17:00. From May 1 to May 31, daily from 11:00 to 18:00. From June 1 to August 31, daily from 10:00 to 18:00, except for June 6 and August 8 (sanitary days). From September 1 to November 7, daily from 11:00 to 18:00. The first Wednesday of the month is a cleaning day. The opening hours of the museum can be changed at temperatures below -15, during school holidays, during festive events on Red Square.
- Ticket prices in 2019: Adult citizens of Russia and CIS countries - 500 rubles; Adult foreign citizens - 700 rubles; Children under 16 years old - free of charge (regardless of citizenship); Children from 16 to 18 years old and full-time students of the Russian Federation - 150 rubles; Pensioners of the Russian Federation and CIS countries - 150 rubles. Free admission to the main exhibition on the last Sunday of the month for students of the Russian Federation (regardless of the form of education), students from 16 to 18 years old (upon presentation of a certificate), members of large families.
| All reviews 5 fedotov alexander 2016-13-12 20:38:10
Is the cathedral looking in the wrong direction? - As I understand it, in antiquity, great importance was attached to the location of religious buildings by compass, as we now say, however, all the temples built before 1850 do not look to the North in our understanding, but they look at Greenland. What does it mean? After 1853 temples and places of worship built …