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CityGuideIndex

The Spasskaya Tower
The Church of the Christ Redeemer
The present-day Kremlin is a gem of Russian architecture which has taken shape over centuries, an ensemble of wonderful palaces and cathedrals, a treasure house in which stores a collection of values beyond comparison. "The Kremlin is a place of great historical remembrances ", this is what Nikolai Karamzin, a Russian historian, said. When looking at the magnificent panorama of the Kremlin, it is hard to believe that the area was once covered with dense forests.

The first wooden Kremlin was built by order of Prince Yuri Dolgoruky in 1156. During the reign of Prince Dmitry Donskoy white stonewalls were erected and since that time Moscow had been called "white-walled ". In 1485-1495 19 towers and toothed walls, resembling swallow tails, were built and clocks were installed on some towers.

Today the clock on the Spasskaya Tower is preserved. It strikes every 15 minutes. At 6 a.m. and at midnight its chimes are broadcast over the radio.

All twenty Kremlin towers are very different from one another. The corner towers are round and those along the walls are rectangular. Eighteen towers are built into the fortress walls. One turret, called the TSAKSKAYA (tsar's) Tower (situated opposite the cathedral of SL Vasily the Blessed), is placed on the wall. Still another one, the KUTAPYA Tower, stands separately in front of the TROITSKAYA Tower and is linked to it by a bridge
 
The Troitskaya (Trinity) Tower
The Troitskaya (Trinity) Tower

Built in 1495, changed its name several times. Known originally as BOGOYAVLENSKAYA (Epiphany), it was later renamed Rizopolozhenskaya (Deposition of the Robe).
Znamenskaya (after the Icon of the Mother Of God) is 69.3 meters high.
Manezhnaya Square
 
 
The Borovitskaya Gate
Tower
Arsenal
Manezhnaya Square

The Borovitskaya Gate Tower

Was built to the design of Pietro Antonio Solary in 1490. In front of its gate there used to be a bridge over the Neglinnaya River. The tower has three progressively singular square tiers built on its massive rectangular lower part, distinguishing it from the other Kremlin towers.

Architects M. Choglokov, M. Renilzov and a number of others, erected the building of the Arsenal in-1702 - 1736. A year later the Arsenal was severely damaged during a great fire in the Kremlin. In 1786 - 1796 engineer L Gerard under the supervision of architect Matvei Kazakov restored it. In 1812 a blow-up once again damaged the building during the retreat of Napoleon's troops from Moscow. Architects I. Mironovsky, A. Bakarev and others, later restored it.

Along the building of the Arsenal, 875 trophy cannons captured by the Russian troops during the retreat of Napoleon's Grand Army in 1812 were placed in the mid-l9th century.

The Centre of the Kremlin is Cathedral Square (Sobornaya) - the main and oldest square that has witnessed all most Important events in the history of tbe Russian state. Surrounding it are the Ivan the Great Bell Tower, the Palace of Facets, the Cathedrals of the Dormition, the Annunciation and the Archangel Michael and a number of other monuments of Russian architecture.

 
 
The Cathedral of the
Dormition
The Cathedral of the Dormition

Was built in 1475 - 1479 by architect Aristotle Fioravanti. For centuries the cathedral has been regarded as the main church in Moscow. Russian metropolitans and patriarchs lie buried here.

In 1482 the cathedral was decorated with the participation of Dionisy, the famous icon painter. The interior of the cathedral is decorated with wall painting dating from 1642 - 1643 and a five-tiered iconostasis covered with embossed gilt silver. The unique masterpieces to be seen in the cathedral include the icon of St. George the Victorious, an outstanding monument of 12th century Russian art, the icon of the Saviour "the eye fiery"(mid 14th century) and a number of others.
 
The Cathedral of the
Dormition
The Cathedral of the Dormition

Was built in 1475 - 1479 by architect Aristotle Fioravanti. For centuries the cathedral has been regarded as the main church in Moscow. Russian metropolitans and patriarchs lie buried here.

In 1482 the cathedral was decorated with the participation of Dionisy, the famous icon painter. The interior of the cathedral is decorated with wall painting dating from 1642 - 1643 and a five-tiered iconostasis covered with embossed gilt silver. The unique masterpieces to be seen in the cathedral include the icon of St. George the Victorious, an outstanding monument of 12th century Russian art, the icon of the Saviour "the eye fiery"(mid 14th century) and a number of others.
 
The Cathedral of the Annunciation
The Cathedral of the Annunciation

Was built in 1484 - 1489 and served as domestic church of the Moscow grand dukes and the Russian tsars. The cathedral was originally three-domed. In the second half of the l6th century it was rebuilt: the open galleries were covered with vaults upon which four small single-domed side chapels were erected and two new domes were added on its western side.

Inside the Cathedral a 15th century iconostasis, one of the oldest in Russia, has survived. Its priceless icons are believed to be works by such famous Russian icon-painters as Andrei Rublev.
 
The Cathedral of the
Archangel Mikhael
The Cathedral of the Archangel Mikhael

Built in 1505 - 1508 by architect Aleviz Now or Aloisio the New served as the family burial place for the Moscow grand dukes and the Russian tsars. In 1679 - 1681 new four-tiered gilt iconostasis was built in the Cathedral. In set it are old icons dating from the 14th to 18th centuries.
 
 
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