Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg


Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg, Russia – is a Slavonic catherdal church that is situated in the very centre of the city. Foresides of the building look on Nevskiy prospect and Griboedov channel. It is one of the largest buildings in Northern capital and its height is 71.5 meters. By its name are called an island in Neva River, a bridge through Nevskiy prospect and Griboedov channel, and a street that goes from the church.

Kazan Cathedral
In 1710 on the Nevskiy prospect near the wood building of the hospital was built a new chapel that later that wood church started to be called Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan. A new stone church was bilt in September of 1733 by the order of the Empress Anna Ioannovna. It was built by the project of Zemtsov and was called Christmassy.

The greatest decoration of the church was a bell in height 58 meters. On 2 july from the Trinity Cathedral arrived an icon of  Lady of Kazan, and the Christmas church started to call by the name of its icon, later this church got the status of a Cathedral, that became the main Cathedral in Northern capital.
At the end of 18th century the building was ruined and it was decided to build a new Cathedral. Pavel 1 wanted this Cathedral to look like the Cathedral of St.Peter’s Basilica in Rome and in 1799 there started a contest for this project.

Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg
Graf Stroganov, which residence was near the church suggested the project of young architect Voronihin, his previous bondman. So the project of Andrey Voronihin was approved. In the presence of Alexander 1, was built a new church.Graf Stroganov became responsible for the building which was over in 1811. Voronihin the author of the project was awarded with an order of second level and life-long pension.

In the building of church toll part only Russian masters, most of builders were peasants who gave all their money to their owners. At first they lived in houses in the country and later in barracks. For the decoration of church were used soviet materials such as: marble, granite and limestone.

Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg4
Voronihin had the main task, as on the west of teh church should be the entrance and on the east – Holy table, then the church was turned to the Nevskiy prospect by its side. By the decision of teh architect before the north side, there was built a colonnade of 96 columns with height 13 meters, made in a half round. And that is how the north side of the church became front.

Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg3
The project was not the whole. By its plan there should be two cononnades from both sides – northern and southern, but it was built only the one norther. So the cononnades should be connected together with a fence and make a square. At the northern side there are 4 bronze sculptures, bronze door are situated at the entrance from the northern side and they are the copy of the Cathedral in Florence.The project was also not finished, there should be two figures at each of the side on the pedestal, figures of archangels Mihail and Gavriil.

The design of the church remains a huge Palace hall, the light that goes through the windows make an impression that the dome is on the huge height.
Actually all the main evwnts in Russian history are connected with the church, this place visited field marshal Kutuzov before he left in the army, here in 1813 arrived his ash, his body was burried in a crypt within the church. Monuments to Kutuzov and Barlay de Tolli were added to the Cathedral, they looked splendid together with sculpture and architecture of the Cathedral.

Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg5
Their fugures are depicted in the whole height, on their shoulders they have coats, they were made of bronze by sculptor Orlovskiy.
After the revolution of 1917 from the dome was taken away a cross, and on his place was located a golden ball, later here also opened a museum of Religion history. The look of Lady of Kazan was moved to Kniaz-Vladimirskiy Cathedral.

Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg2
The building got several tackles during the blockade of Leningrad, but after the war the Cathedral was rebuilt. Since 1991 Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg was opened again for church services. An icon of Lady of Kazan was returned into Cathedral and a golden cross appeared on the dome again.
To the anniversary of St.Petersburg the Cathedral got the largest casted dome with weight of 4 tonnes and with height more than 2 meters. Nowadays there take place church services.

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