Temnikov, Russia


Temnikov (Moksh. Temnikav, Erz. Chopolt, Tat. Tөmun) is a city in the Republic of Mordovia of the Russian Federation. The administrative center of the Temnikovsky district.



The Nativity of the Theotokos Sanaksar Monastery is an Orthodox male monastery in the Krasnoslobodskaya diocese of the Mordovian Metropolis of the Russian Orthodox Church (Republic of Mordovia, Temnikov; until 1918 it was in the Tambov diocese).



It was founded in 1659 during the reign of Alexei Mikhailovich, three versts from the county town of Temnikov (now the Temnikovsky district of Mordovia), on the left bank of the Moksha River. A place for the future monastery was given by a resident of the city of Temnikov, a nobleman scribe Luka Evsyukov, who invited from the Staro-Kadomsky monastery the first builder and rector, Abbot Theodosius, who built in 1676, with the blessing of Patriarch Joasaph II of Moscow, the first temple of the monastery in honor of the Presentation of the Icon of the Mother of God of Vladimir.

The monastery got its name from the small lake Sanaksar located under its walls (which in the local dialect means literally: “lying in a swampy hollow near a hill”). Having existed for about a hundred years, the Sanaksar monastery fell into disrepair due to lack of funds and brethren and was assigned to the Sarov desert, in its most flourishing time.

The period of renewal of the monastery is associated with the name of Theodore (Ushakov) (rector 1764-1774).

By the highest decree of March 7, 1765, Sanaksar was ordered to be called a monastery.

Along with Sarov, the Sanaksar Monastery was the spiritual center of Russia in those years, it had many dignitaries in St. Petersburg and Moscow.

On May 27, 1915, Alexander (Urodov) was elected rector of the monastery, who was deposed by the brethren in March 1918 and taken into custody; later he was the rector of the Sviyazhskaya Makarievskaya hermitage and the governor of the Sedmiezernaya hermitage (on September 8, 2001, his relics were found in the village of Sobolev, which were transferred to the monastery).

In October 1929 the monastery was finally closed.

By a decree of the Council of Ministers of Mordovia dated May 7, 1991, the buildings of the former monastery were transferred to the Saransk diocese. On May 26, 1991, on the day of the Holy Trinity, the abbot of the monastery, Archimandrite Varnava (Safonov), celebrated the first liturgy.

On June 6, 2001, the elder shiigumen Jerome (Verendyakin), who was revered by some, died.

On the territory of the monastery there is a sawmill complex and a workshop for the production of candles. On October 23, 2014, the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church approved Hieroarchimandrite Kliment, Bishop of Krasnoslobodsky and Temnikovsky, in office.

Fyodor Ushakov Museum of History and Local Lore
The Fyodor Ushakov Museum of History and Local Lore, which is a branch of the Republican Museum of Local Lore, is located in a historical building built in 1809. The exposition of the museum presents archaeological finds, items of folk art and everyday life, historical documents, memorial things and works of fine art. The museum has over 1000 exhibits dedicated to Admiral Ushakov. The most valuable is a plaster bust of the famous doctor of historical sciences, professor-anthropologist Mikhail Gerasimov, recreated from the admiral's skull.

House-museum of Leonid Voinov, artistic director of the Temnikovskiy orchestra of Russian folk instruments. It was opened in 1969, it is located in the family estate of Voinov, in the restored house of his mother. Valuable exhibits of the Temnikov house-museum are the composer's personal belongings: a balalaika, a piano, a violin "OTTO MIGGE, London" of 1898 (the Voinov family heirloom), an inkwell of Leo Tolstoy, donated by Alexander Goldenweiser.

Monument to Admiral Fyodor Ushakov on the central square of the city. Opened in December 2019. The author of the two-meter sculpture on the pedestal is the Honored Artist of Russia, sculptor Yuri Zlotya.



The city is located in the northwest of the republic, on the Moksha River (a tributary of the Oka), 159 km northwest of Saransk.

The Nativity of the Theotokos Sanaksar Monastery is 3 km from the city.



It is the oldest city in the Republic of Mordovia. It was founded in 1536 on the site of the present village of Stary Gorod (moved to a new, more convenient place on the other side of Moksha by order of Elena Glinskaya). Temnikovskaya fortress was part of the Kasimov kingdom. In 1779 Temnikov received the status of a district town in the Tambov province. For a long time it was a part of the Tambov province - the district town of Temnikovsky district.