Tag Archives: saint-petersburg

Cruiser Aurora

Cruiser Aurora1

Cruiser Aurora – is a cruiser that was well-known by its important role in Glorious October Socialist Revolution, it was built by a shipbuilding programm in 1895.And in the 1897 it appeared in St.Petersburg, at the same time three ships “Diana”, “Pallada” and “Aurora”. So Aurora got its name on honour of destroyer leader who was fighting in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy.

Cruiser Aurora

Actually this type of cruisers was made for the role of fighting and exploring. However, the cruiser’s possibilities were not enough for far distance, low speed, and poor military hardware.

So that is why the cruiser was called to become an educational cruiser. The team of the cruiser consistef of 600 people and its shell was protected with copper.

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The first war events where Cruiser Aurora took place were Russo-Japanese war, next was Zusimskiy fighting, Glorious October Socialist Revolution. After  Glorious October Socialist Revolution Cruiser Aurora was left its native name, as it supposed to be the only Emperor ship. But later the cruiser became again educational, some time after, the cruiser participated in Civil War that lasted not for a long time. But after this, Cruiser Aurora took part in the Great Patriotic war and protected Leningrad. But in 1941 after some damages it was repaired, but while this time Cruiser didnt lower the flag.

Cruiser Aurora4

So even before the war was over, it was a desicion to rebuilt the ship as a monument of an active participant in the Revolution of 1917. “Aurora” was taken for rebuilding in 1944 and after the whole repairing started to look the same as in 1917. Though it took for 3 years. As a result the ship became an educational place for the students of  Nahimovskiy college. Where future officers got their first service on the ship.

Cruiser Aurora2

And though while Soviet Goverment Aurora became an educational, it was considered to be a great symbol of revolution. While repairing Aurora was screened in a movie even.The Museum was created since 1950 by the common forces of enthusiasts and veterans. In 1956 it was decided to give the ship status of the Central Military Navy Museum.Since 1961 Aurora stoped to be an educational ship, it became a museum.

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In 1980 the ship was required to be repaired again. In Aurora were made restored works, and after this the whole design of the ship inside has changed. So there is a museum on the deck, there is a section of museum workers, a kitchen, a living block for officers, a companion cabin and a captain saloon. So everything inside is equiped with the rules as being on a Military Sea Navy.

Before pipes of air inlets partially latent spare blade of the screw is visible (????? ??????? ????????????????? ????? ???????? ??????? ???????? ??????? ?????)

So nowadays for 50 years Cruisere Aurora is situated near the front sea of St.Petersburgh. The appearance of the ship is very common already. And everybody knows that Cruiser Aurora is a monument to the Soviet Shipbuilding, though thу ship met a lot of events during its way in the history of 20th century.

Cruiser Aurora8

It is a defender of Russia in three wars, a participant in the events of February Revolution,  in october of 1917, it is a place of training many navy officers, that even later it became a Museum. And it still has saved the status of the number 1 ship of Russian Military Navy.

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So Cruiser Aurora has a legendary and unforgettable past, and even nowadays Aurora attracts millions of people all over the world.

The exposition at Aurora has 6 buildings, where are situated almost 1.000 of different exhibits. Among them are paintings and water-color works, flags and symbols of the ship, true historical documents, connected with cruiser, many pictures of sailors who worked on this ship, medals and awards, collections of coins with the ship, models of russian military navy, and also presents from the goverment, military men and different organizations from all over the world.

Pavlovsk

Pavlovsk

Pavlovsk city is the nearest city to the Puskin city (Tsarskoye Selo). Pavlovsk is situated from 26 kilometers to the south of St.Petersburg. The history of Pavlovsk started on 12 december of 1777, when Catherine 2 gave the land as a gift to her son Pavel and his wife Maria to the birth of their first child – Alexander 1.

Pavlovsk city 2

The city was called “Pavlovskoye selo” and in 1779 two wood Palaces were built here: “Pavlova uteha” and “Dolina Marii”. In 1780 Charles Cameron was invited in Pavlovsk to help with architecture, he was the student of the famous Italian architecture Antonio Palladi. With Cameron the building in Pavlovsk changed greatly.

Pavlovsk city

In 1782 the building of Pavlovskiy Palace started, it was built during 4 years and at once Cameron worked at the creation of parks. In 1795 was ruined a Mariental Palace, at his place was built a fortress Mariental by Brenna in 1797.Pavel who prefered Gatchina more, gave Pavlovskoye Selo to his wife and a week later gave an order to change the name and named it Pavlovsk. After the death of Pavel 1 Pavlovsk became a summer residence of the Empress.

The-Pavlovsk-Palace

After the revolution the Palace and the park of Pavlovsk became a Museum. In 1918 Pavlovsk got a name Sluzk, in honour of Vera Sluzkaya.The main place in the mark takes Pavlovskiy Palace that is built at the bank of the river Slavyanka. Pavlovskiy Palace can be observed even from the most far away places of the park. Cameron chose a type of popular and well spread itallian villa with a large dome.

Pavlovsk city 1

The general scheme of the building looks like a Russian villa: cononnades lead to the very centre of the building, the entrance hall of Pavlovskiy Palace is decorated with Egyptian statues. The main hall of the Palace was surrounded with galleries and annexes. The Palace has a project that look like a horseshoe.In the middle of the entrance hall of the garden in 1872 was located a monument to Pavel 1. This look remains the square in front of Versailles with the monument to Ludovik.

Pavlovsk city 4

The main place among the interior of the palace take Italian and Greek halls. There are Italian sculptures in the Italian hall. A Greek hall got its name of its decoration in an ancient style; there are columns, statues, lamps and many other beautiful items.

In a painting gallery gathered all the best works of the oil painters on 18th century. A huge hall impresses with its sizes, its territory is 400 square kilometers. At first it was planned to become a front dining-room, but later there was installed Emperor’s throne, that is why the hall got the second name – Throne. The hall is decorated with frescoes that make the hall look even bigger and taller.

Pavlovsk city 3

In 1837 between Pavlovsk and St.Petersburg was opened the first railway in Russia. In 1918 Pavlovsk became Sluzk, though during the revolution and the Civil war the Palace in Sluzk suffered lesser than any other Russian Residences in the surburbs of St.Petersburg. In 1918 there was opened a museum, during 1920-1930 the Palace was ruined and lots of famous works of art and paitings were sold abroad.In 1926-1930 the Palace was closed and became a large storehouse.

In 1930 Sluzk entered Leningrad region, and in 1936 it became an administrative center of Sluzk region of the Leningrad area, there were added 13 local councils. In 1941 during the Great Patriotic war the most part of museum collections in Pavlovsk was closed and hidden. The Palace and the park suffered a lot during the invasion of fascist army.

Pavlovsk city 5

After the release of the city in 1944-1978, reconstructive works started in the city. In 1957 were opened the first halls of a new Palace. In January 1944, according to historical events Sluzk became Pavlovsk again and Sluzk region became Pavloskiy region.

Nowadays Pavlovsk – is an administrative region of St.Petersburg, where are two libraries, medical buildings, several schools and hostels, retirement homes, center of rest and enternaiment.

In general recontrructive works in this city lasted for 30 years and nowadays Pavlovsk protected by UNESCO.

Many famous russian poets and writers praised Pavlovsk in their works, among them Zukovskiy, Ahmatova and Dostoevskiy. There were even several movies screened in Pavlovsk.

Silver Age

St. Petersburg

The Silver Age was the calm before the tempest for both St. Petersburg and the rest of the country. Nicholas II, the son of Alexander III, and Russia’s last Emperor, reigned from 1894 till 1917.

At the turn of the twentieth century, the bureaucratic system was still intact. It hampered the country’s social, political and economical development, and first signs of instability appeared. However, the regime would not let go.

St. Petersburg 2

In January 1905, the tsar’s guards gunned down a peaceful demonstration of workers who had come to Palace Square to get their problems through to the Emperor. The ‘Blood Sunday’ fanned the flames of the growing public outrage and triggered the 1905-1907 Revolution. After that, on October 17, 1905, the tsar proclaimed a manifesto, which had a significant democratic veer. It instituted a new parliamentary system. The new parliament was supposed to consist of the State Council and the Duma.

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The district where the parliament building was found boomed instantly. Sadly, most bills and decisions initiated by the Duma were blocked by the government. The WWI added more fuel to the fire, sending the country spiraling down into chaos and disintegration.

St. Petersburg 3

The Silver Age inspired new life in the city’s architecture. During that period, a lot of commercial apartment buildings were erected in St. Petersburg, featuring well-shaped inner yards and modernist, neoclassic and eclectic décor elements. In 1903, when St. Petersburg was celebrating its 200th anniversary, the Troitsky Bridge was built.  Outside the central and historic districts, large workers’ blocks were erected around factories.

St. Petersburg 4

Despite the brewing trouble, St. Petersburg was still an attraction for poets, artists, musicians, composers and writers. Before 1917, the city was considered to be the citadel of the Russian culture.

The 900-day Siege

The 900-day Siege4

Definitely, this is the gravest chapter of the city’s history, since it is full of pain and sorrow. At the same time, the city residents have shown their ability to survive the toughest ordeals imaginable.

The 900-day Siege3

A bit more than two months since the invasion of the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941, the Germans staved the Red Army and encircled Leningrad (the city’s name had been changed to Leningrad after Vladimir Lenin’s death in 1924). The siege began on September 8, 1941, and ended on January 27, 1944. In total, the siege lasted 900 days.

The 900-day Siege

The city’s food and fuel stocks were exhausted shortly after the siege began. There was no electricity, heating, and the city transport stopped. The daily ratio was limited to about ¼ of a pound of bread per person. However, life went on in the besieged city, and some industries were still operational.

The 900-day Siege1

The Hermitage’s exhibits were secured in the museum’s and Saint Isaac’s Cathedral’s basements. So were those of Petrodvorets and the Tsarskoye Selo Museum. Cultural life was still brewing. It was during the siege that Dmitry Shostakovich wrote his famous ‘Leningrad’ symphony.

The 900-day Siege8

Neither city residents nor Red Army soldiers agreed to even consider the possibility of surrender. Many residents fled the city via the ‘Road of Life’ that ran across Ladoga Lake – the only connection with the mainland, which was attacked all the time. It was the only route by which food, water and fuel were delivered to Leningrad.

The 900-day Siege2

In January 1943, the Red Army broke the Siege, but it took one more year to lift it completely. Over the three years, more than 600,000 people died of diseases and starvation. Most victims are buried in the Piskariovskoye memorial Cemetery.

The Foundation Ground

Saint Petersburg4

Saint Petersburg is relatively young. Since its foundation in the early 1700s, the city was caught up in a stunning tapestry of historic economic, political and social events, which few one-thousand-year-old cities can boast.

Saint Petersburg2

Before the city’s foundation, Russian people had inhabited Neva banks and the coast of the Gulf of Finland for many centuries. The strategic importance of the region was evident even then, since it served as a springboard for successful economical and cultural relationships with rapidly evolving European societies. The area was also an attraction for Russia’s eternal rivals – the Swedes and the Germans. In the 16th century, when the country was in decline, the Swedes conquered a vast area lying between Ladozhskoye Lake and Narva and blocked access to the Baltic Sea for Russia for nearly 100 years.

Saint Petersburg

The history of regaining the area goes hand in hand with the history of the city’s erection. Peter the Great took reign over Russia in critical times. The tsar realized that there was no way for the country to rise from the ashes of the Time of Trouble without establishing a long-lasting relationship with the rest of Europe. He also realized that it would take a military action to free the northern lands from the Swedes and win back access to the Baltic Sea and therefore to Europe.

Saint Petersburg3

Saint Petersburg was founded in 1703, when the Swedes abandoned the area lying around the Delta of the River Neva. Here the river forms numerous forks and branches dissecting the piece of land into several big islands and scores of smaller ones. There were 101 islands in the delta formed by a network of canals, many of which were filled in as the city grew.

Saint Petersburg1

In 1720, one of the representatives of the Polish Embassy gave his own description of the St. Petersburg’s foundation ground. In his story, he mentioned fifteen little hutches owned by Swedish fishermen, which were found exactly where the city was started.

St. Petersburg Heading Toward Capitalism

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When Alexander II was crowned, the Russian Empire was dealing with economic decline and the consequences of the defeat in the Crimean War. With the thunder of social unrest drawing closer than ever and the gap between Russia and the leading European economies growing more evident, an immediate action was required.

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The abolition of serfdom was one of the most radical steps toward liberal economy. Also, Alexander introduced local self-government organs called ‘zemstvos’, which were authorized to provide roads, medical and schooling services. St. Petersburg obtained a radically new self-government system.

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Meanwhile, there was a growing public dissatisfaction with the reforms as being not sufficiently liberal and therefore failed to overcome the conservative trends that inhibited the country’s social and economic development. The government’s oppressive policy resulted in the appearance of the Narodnaya Volya  – a clandestine terrorist organization, whose members assassinated Alexander II on March 1, 1881. The beautiful Church of Our Savior on Spilled Blood was erected right at the murder site. Infuriated by his father’s assassination, Alexander III took an extremely tough line against radical organizations and curtailed all liberal reforms.

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In the late 1800s, St. Petersburg became a capitalist city with national and foreign enterprises growing and banking systems developing. In the 1890s, construction was booming and blooming, and the city’s architecture began to grow taller. Liteiny bridge was built, and it was the first place in St. Petersburg to be equipped with street lights. It was the time when monuments to Catherine and Nicholas I were erected. Also, the first monument to the poet Alexander Pushkin was built.

Pushkin

Foundation of Saint-Petersburg

fortress on Zayachy Island 1

By the time of the foundation of St. Petersburg, the Northern War had been raging for three years, and Russia had regained a large part of the land lost a century before, including the delta of the River Neva. However, with the threat persisting and more areas needing to be freed from the Swedish occupation, it was absolutely imperative that Russia strengthened its presence in the north-west by building a stronghold. Under these circumstances, Peter the Great released an order to erect a fortress on Zayachy Island – one of the many islands found in the delta.

fortress on Zayachy Island 4

The fortress appeared to be the city’s first erection. The first stone was laid in its foundation on May 27 N. S., 1703. The fortress and, later, the city were named after St. Peter, the tzar’s patron saint. Nowadays, May 27 is officially celebrated as St. Petersburg’s foundation day. On May 27, 2003, the city celebrated its 300th anniversary, in preparation for which it had undergone a massive renovation.

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By the spring of 1704, the hexangular fortress was there, its front bastions projecting forward. Peter designed it as Russia’s main foothold in the war against Sweden

fortress on Zayachy Island

In an effort to secure the conquered positions, Peter launched the construction of a military base with a ship haven, ammunition storage buildings, warehouses, barracks, and officers houses close to the Peter and Paul Fortress. The new city was designed as a military and trading port. It was supposed to concentrate industries serving military needs, including the casting bed, leather factory, powder mill, etc. The main shipping route was redirected from Arkhangelsk to St. Petersburg. In 1703, St. Petersburg gave a pompous reception to the first foreign trading ship arriving in it.

fortress on Zayachy Island 2

It took a tremendous amount of manpower to build such a large city on such a boggy piece of land. Thousands of peasants were forced to move to the area, where they had to live an extremely tough life. Many of them perished from strain and diseases. In 1712, St. Petersburg gained the status of the capital of the Russian Empire.

Elizabeth’s Reign

elizaveta-petrovna

By the end of Peter’s reign, St. Petersburg had become one of the world’s most beautiful cities. It took centuries for most European capitals to become the cities they were at that time, and it took less than three decades for St. Petersburg to achieve equal footing with them. Peter attracted architects from inside the Russian Empire and from abroad, and it was a matter of pride for them to have a chance to implement their ideas in following the highly elaborate town-planning strategy.

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St. Petersburg continued to grow and develop after Peter’s death.  Peter’s daughter – Elizabeth – gave a new impulse to the formation of the city’s architecture and skyline. Unlike her father, who had placed a greater emphasis on the city’s role as a military port and the empire’s main stronghold in the west of the country, Elizabeth’s main concern was the city’s aesthetics.

Elizabeth

Elizabeth reigned from 1741 to 1461. Her natural beauty and infinite love of baroque style laid a strong imprint on the city’s life and appearance. She strove to embellish the city with grandiloquent temples and palaces for the city to live up to its capital status. It was the time when Bartolommeo Rastrelli – a renowned Italian genius of architecture – had his major take on St. Petersburg. The most famous Rastrelli’s creations include the Peterhof ensemble with a lavishly decorated fountain cascade, Tsarskoye Selo, Vorontsov’s and Stroganov’s houses,  Smolny Convent, and the Winter Palace. Nevsky Prospect had already become the city’s main road. Funded by local merchant communities, the construction of the Gostinniy Dvor was launched in 1755.

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Being a patron of the arts and sciences, Elizabeth contributed to national education, as she established the Russian Academy of Arts.  During Elizabeth’s reign, nobilities lived a pompous and glamorous life full of receptions, masquerades and balls.

Elizabeth 1

Catherine’s St. Petersburg

Catherine the Great4

Catherine the Great took power in 1762, and hers was one of the longest reigns in the Russian history, lasting 34 years. She enjoyed respect among the Russian nobility, who helped her overthrow her husband’s reign.

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Catherine the Great continued her predecessor’s city development course, and to her St. Petersburg owes many of the improvement that took place in it over the late 1700s. She launched a massive campaign against shabby wooden structures and ordered that all houses along the banks of the Neva and Fontanka rivers and along the main city roads be aligned and made of stone.

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Catherine strove to bring St. Petersburg at par with other European capitals. She cared so much about the city’s good looks and economy that she spent her entire reign in the city, and she would only briefly leave for Tsarskoye Selo on summer days. During Catherine’s reign, the city’s population grew from 60,000 people to 200,000 people.

Catherine the Great1

Unlike Elisabeth – an ardent baroque style adherer, Catherine the Great chose to follow the classic trend in architecture characterized by a stricter and more refined form. Jacomo Quarengi – a renowned classicist – designed more than 30 buildings in and around St. Petersburg, including the Old Hermitage, Saltikov’s House and many other creations of architecture.

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Works by Antonio Renaldi – another gifted architect – reflected a transition from baroque style to classic style. The Marble Palace is one of his most renowned buildings, which Catherine presented to Grigory Orlov in gratitude for helping her gain power.

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The embankments of the river Neva and the canals underwent a massive reconstruction and were clad with red granite slabs, under the direction of Yuri Felten, who crafted the famous iron wrought fencing for the Summer Garden.

Catherine the Great created an ample ground for arts to flourish. It was under her patronage that the first Public Library, the Academy of Fine Arts and the Russian Academy of Science were built.

Saint-Petersburg in 1800-1855

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After Catherine’s death in 1796, her son Paul I assumed power and began to steer the Russian Empire down the bureaucratic road. In an effort to blindly follow the Prussian policy model, Paul I aggressively exercised ultra-conservative policies. His assassination phobia forced him to build what is known today as the Mikhailovsky Castle, which proved to be of little help in the end. He was assassinated in his own bedroom on March 12, 1801, not without his son’s – Alexander’s I – assistance, who had sworn to continue Catherine’s line of policy.

Paul I 1

After the coronation, Alexander began to reform the governmental system. He introduced ministries and the State Counsil and thus laid the foundation for bureaucracy and tough police order to flourish for decades. It was the time when St. Petersburg underwent significant tailoring to meet strict perfectionist requirements. Several major pieces of architecture, such as the Admitralty and the Naval Headquarters, were restructured. The Rostral Column and the Stock Exchange appeared on the southern edge of Vasilievsky Island. A lot of work was done by Carlo Rossi, an outstanding Italian architect, who designed the Mikhailovsky Palace and Arts Square. Auguste Montferrand, a French architect, designed the St. Isaac’s Cathedral, which was intended to be the Empire’s main church.

Paul I

Right after Alexander’s death in December 1825, thelong- glowing political crisis exploded in a revolutionist action sketched by a group of liberal army officers – the Decembrists – who expected Nicholas I to officially introduce constitutional monarchy. They lined up on Senate Square, not taking any radical steps. Most probably, it was the shot by Kachovsky, killing General-Governor Miloradocitch, that triggered the violence. The revolt was crushed and five of the activists were sent to the gallows.

Alexander

This event drove Nicholas I to tighten the current conservative regime and militarize nearly all spheres of political and social life in St. Petersburg and the rest of the country.

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Despite the tough regime, the Russian culture flourished. It was during Nicholas’s reign that Alexander Pushkin, Fiodor Dostoyevsky and Mikhail Glinka created their most outstanding masterpieces. It was the time when the first railroad appeared in the country, which connected St. Petersburg with Tsarskoye Selo. It was the time when the first permanent bridge was built in St. Petersburg.

Nicholas