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Faceted Palace (Грановитая Палата) (Moscow)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Description of the Faceted Palace

Faceted Palace is one of the oldest civilian monuments in the Moscow Kremlin. It was constructed between 1487 and 1491 by Italian architects Marco Ruffo and Pietro Antonio Solari during rule of Ivan III. The name of the Faceted Chamber comes from its facade that is covered by faceted stones or "diamond rustification". Similar design is common in some parts of Italy during the Renaissance and this tradition was brought along with the Italian architects who designated the Faceted Chamber. The main hall or the Grand Chamber of the palace is situated on the second floor. There cross vaults of the hall are based on the central pillar.

 

At the time of its construction it was one of the largest halls in Moscow Kremlin and possible all of Russian lands. It is not surprising that the Faceted Chamber became the main reception hall of the palace. Boyar Duma and Zemsky Sobor gathered here to discuss matters of the state. Additionally it served as a place for celebration during remarkable military victories. In 1552 Russian tsar Ivan the Terrible celebrated conquest of Kazan and in 1653 the Faceted Chamber became the centre stage for historic reunification of Ukraine and Russia at the Zemsky Sobor. Later tsars and Russian Emperor continued the tradition. In 1709 Peter the Great celebrated victory over Swedish army at Poltava and in 1721 he marked successful conclusion of the Great Northern War and defeat of Swedish king Charles XII.

 

Frescoes that adore walls of the Faceted Chamber date to the 16th century. In 1684 the Grand Chamber was remodelled under supervision of architect Osip Starcev. Windows were increased in size and columns covered with grape wines were also added around this time. The audience chamber of the Faceted Chamber has an interesting feature. Opposite of the royal throne it has a secret room for the queen and her children. Although women were not technically part of the political process, they often played an important role in the lives of the country behind the scenes. Listening to discussions and negotiations in the audience chamber allowed them to access most secret information of the state without being seen or noticed.

 

The Red Porch of the Faceted Chamber was a ceremonial entrance to the Faceted Chamber. Long after Moscow lost its importance as a capital of the Russian Empire it was still regarded as an important symbol of tradition. All Russian tsars and later emperors followed through this gate to the Cathedral of the Assumption for their official coronation. In 1930 the Red Porch was removed by the orders of the Josef Stalin as a symbol of previous monarch traditions, but in 1994 the staircase and a gate were restored.

 

 

 


 

Transportation

 

Hotels, motels and where to sleep

 

Restaurant, taverns and where to eat

 

Cultural (and not so cultural) events

 

Interesting information and useful tips

 

 

 

 

 

 

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