Pearls of Russia
Cathedral of God's Ascension
A stately Cathedral of God's Ascension, which is also known in Moscow as the Great Ascension, adorns the square nearby the Nikitskie gates.
The first stone church of ascension appeared there by tsarina Natalia Kirillovna Narishkina-s order in the XVII century. Under Catherine II her favourite, prince Potyomkin-Tavrichesky, dwelt near the church.
The Preobrazhensky regiment, which was under Potyomkin-s command, was billeted in the square.
The prince made up his mind to erect a big spacious cathedral of the Preobrazhensky regiment instead of the old poky church.
Outstanding architects V. Bazhenov and M. Kazakov were invited to build the cathedral. Its erection dragged on for almost half a century.
The work was finished only in 1845. Many famous peeople-s lives were this or that way connected with the cathedral. According to the legend Catherine II and Potyomkin-s conjugal crowns were kept there.
On February, 18, 1831 A. S. Pushkin married N. Goncharova in the unfinished church. And in November, 1917 the cadets, who perished during on of the most fierce fights by the Nikitskie gates, were buried there.
The cathedral was closed in 1931, but memories of Pushkin and his participation in the church history saved the cathedral from demolition.
Different institutions have occupied the building for some period of time. Then a project to turn the cathedral into a concert hall appeared. And at last in 1992 the cathedral was returned to the Orthodox Church.
Address: 36, Bol. Nikitskaya St., Moscow
Underground: Arbatskaya (Arbatsko-Pokrovskoy linii)