The Cathedral of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin inside the Suzdal Kremlin is the oldest building in Suzdal. A distinctive feature of the cathedral is that it is built not of smooth white stone, but of rough tufa. As far back as in the 12th century, Vladimir Monomakh built a church on this site and consecrated it in honor of Assumption Day. However the place for the construction of the cathedral was poorly chosen. It was constructed on the site of a former ravine, and the cathedral dilapidated quickly. Later the Assumption Cathedral was rebuilt by the Duke of Suzdal, Yury Dolgoruky. In 1222, by the order of Duke Georgy Vsevolodovich, the Assumption Cathedral was partially dismantled and rebuilt, after which it was re-consecrated and renamed as the Cathedral of the Nativity. Over the years, the main Cathedral of the Kremlin has been repeatedly renovated and upgraded in accordance with the requirements of the times, but most of these add-ons have not survived.
In the 15th century near the Cathedral of the Nativity, the first brick bishopric palaces were built in Suzdal. They represent a complex set of structures constructed during the 15th-18th centuries. In the 16th century, the refectory church of the Annunciation was built next to them. In 1635 opposite the Cathedral of the Nativity, a monumental octagonal pillar was constructed with a bell tower and a high tented roof. In the middle tier of the pillar a house church was built. A clock was installed on the bell tower at the end of the 17th century and chimed for every hour and quarter hour. For communication between adjacent metropolitan chambers, magnificent passages were made from the chambers to the western facade of the bell tower.
The Kremlin also includes churches built into the earthen ramparts: the Church of the Assumption, the Church of St. Nikolas, and the Church of the Nativity. The Church of the Assumption was built on a site that had served as a courtyard for the Grand Duke Ivan III in the second half of the 15th century. In the Suzdal building records from 1617, the church was noted as wooden, but after a large fire in 1650, the church was rebuilt out of stone. In the second half of the 17th century and early part of the 13th century, the church was probably rebuilt again, as its lower and upper parts are characterized by different types of construction. The Church of the Assumption is one of the few representatives of Moscow or Naryshkin baroque in Suzdal.
The Church of St. Nikolas was built in 1720-1739 on the site of a tent wooden church that had burned down in 1719. The church is typical of Suzdal: it is a single-domed church with a large apsis and an add-on bell tower with an attached tent-roof.
Located next to the Kremlin, the small Church of the Nativity, built in 1775, is a «warm» church accompanying the large «cold» one. Small «warm» churches are usually very simple and plain in their architecture, often similar to a residential one-story building or a square wooden church.
The wooden Church of St. Nicholas, which was relocated from the village of Glotovo in the Yuriev-Polsky district in 1961, is also located inside the Kremlin. It was the first exhibit at what would come to be known as the Museum of Wooden Architecture. It is a true piece of carpentry art, as it was cut out of wood with an axe and constructed using only wooden nails.
Today, the Suzdal Kremlin is among the most important tourist, historical, and religious sites not only in Vladimir oblast and Russia, but Europe as a whole. Suzdal is included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Official Tourism Portal of Vladimirskaya Oblast / vladimirtravel.ru
|Address:||Vladimirskaya Oblast, Suzdal, Kremlevskaya Street, building 27|