Cathedral of Archangel (Архангельский Собор) (Moscow)

Cathedral of Archangel (Архангельский Собор) (Moscow)

 

Description of the Cathedral of Archangel

Cathedral of Archangel is a medieval Eastern Orthodox Church that stands on Cathedral Square in the Moscow Kremlin. The first temple was constructed in Kremlin in 1247- 48. It was a modest wooden structure that was replaced in 1333 by tsar Ivan Kalita who ordered construction of a stone structure. Newly constructed Archangel Cathedral was consecrated on September 20, 1333 by Metropolit Feognost. Current building was reconstructed in 1505- 8 under supervision of Italian architect Aleviz Novy. New cathedral was consecrated again in 1508 by Metropolit Simon. Cathedral of Archangel was constructed from brick and trimmed with decorations from white stone. The fact that current Cathedral of Archangel was designed by an Italian architect can be seen in architectural motifs of the Italian Renaissance. Orthodox icons of wooden iconostasis that divides altar from the rest of the church date back to 17th- 19th century. Wall murals were painted (or "written") in 1652- 66 by Kazanets Jacob, Joseph Vladimirov and Stephan Ryazanets.

 

Cathedral of Archangel served not only as a church, but also as a necropolis for the royal family. Grand Prince Vasily (Basil) III ordered transfer of relics of saints. In all there are 54 burials inside Cathedral of Archangel. Bishops served a special commemoration service in memory of dead princes and their relatives.

 

Cathedral of Archangel was damaged during Russian Revolution of 1917, but it was completely closed in 1918 during atheistic campaign against Russian Orthodox Church. Cathedral of Archangel was miraculously saved, but nearby Voznesensky Monastery wasn't so lucky. It was destroyed and necropolis of princesses was moved to Cathedral of Archangel. From 1955 Cathedral of Archangel became a museum and a place for concerts.