May Day Square, Russia

by | June 27, 2022

In the southwestern part of the Kremlin, just behind the Spassky Gates, stands the Transfiguration Monastery.. The monastery was founded in the 16th century and was immediately surrounded by a stone fence, that is, it was isolated from the city and lived according to its own laws. To this day, only the basement floor of the main monastery Transfiguration Cathedral, which is now going to be rebuilt, the restored Church of St. Nicholas the Ratny and the restored fraternal building, has survived from it. Between the Junker School and the buildings of the Transfiguration Monastery of the Savior is the building of the Manege of the 19th century.

According to eZine Sports, the main Muslim temple not only of the city, but of the entire republic is the Kul-Sharif Mosque. The mosque rises in the western part of the Kremlin not far from the Junker School. It was erected in 2005. Now it is the largest mosque in Russia, it can accommodate up to 1.5 thousand believers. The mosque was named after the Tatar national hero Imam Kul-Sharif. The domed building of the mosque is surrounded by 4 high minarets, each 57 m high, and two lower minarets. Its dome symbolizes the crown of the Kazan khans and has decorations similar to it. In general, the mosque complex, installed next to the Orthodox cathedrals, is designed to show the peaceful coexistence of two different faiths. It is worth noting that before the capture of Kazan by the troops of Ivan the Terrible in Kerman there was also an 8-minaret mosque Kul-Sharif. However, the place where it was located is still not known for certain, but it is believed that it stood on the site of the current Annunciation Cathedral.

In the northwestern part of the Kremlin, near the Kul-Sharif mosque, there is a complex of buildings of the Artillery Yard. It originated in the 17th century as a foundry. The courtyard buildings were located in the form of a square – the main building stretched along Bolshaya Street, and from the north and south the courtyard was limited by two other buildings. In the 19th century, a new fourth Western building was erected along the Kremlin wall. A fire in 1815 destroyed all the buildings and, despite the fact that they were restored, weapons were no longer produced here. In the northeastern part of the Kremlin, north of the Cathedral of the Annunciation, there is an interesting Residence of the President of the Republic of Tatarstan, the former building of the Governor’s Palace, built on the site of the Khan’s Palace of ancient Kerman in the 18th century. The presidential residence was built in pseudo-Byzantine style and consists of two floors. Next to it stands the single-domed Palace Church, which served as the house church of the Kazan governors. It was built in the 18th century. The oldest building in the Governor’s Palace complex is the Syuyumbike Tower., preserved from the buildings of the Khan’s court. Legends say that the tower was built in the 16th century, but there are disagreements about who ordered the construction of the tower. Perhaps it was Khan Mohammed Amin, who wanted to build a tower in the Khan’s courtyard, similar to Moscow, perhaps the last queen of the Kazan Khanate Syuyumbike, who agreed to become the wife of Ivan the Terrible if he erected a tower in a short time, and then rushed down from it. In the Middle Ages, the 58-meter tower was a sentinel. Its foundation was laid shallow, which is why it tilted over time. The tower is tilted in a northeasterly direction and the deviation of its spire from the vertical is 1.98 m.

In front of the Spasskaya Tower of the Kremlin is May Day Square, which was called Spasskaya before the revolution. In the center of it stands a monument to the Tatar poet Musa Jalil. The monument depicts the poet tearing the barbed wire that has entangled him, which symbolizes his heroic struggle against fascism. The main building of the square is the Gostiny Dvor, which since the 16th century has been the largest commercial building in the city. Now Gostiny Dvor houses the National Museum of the Republic of Tatarstan. The museum opened its doors to visitors in 1895. Now it is the largest provincial museum in Russia.. It tells about the history of the city and the republic as a whole. The museum presents collections on archeology, numismatics, collections of works of Tatar national art and gold jewelry. The most valuable are the Bulgar collection of A.F. Likhachev, collection of excavations of the Ananyino burial grounds, Egyptian and antique collections, collections of gold coins, ancient scrolls of the 17th century, handwritten books of the 15th – 20th centuries, memorial things of figures of Tatar literature, arts and crafts of Kazan Tatars, memorial collection of G.R. Derzhavin, as well as a collection of monuments of historical taxidermy.

On May Day Square, the building of the City Duma of the early 19th century stands out. Kremlin Street stretches from the square to the southern part of the city., along which there are architectural monuments of the 16th-19th centuries, mostly old mansions. For example, Ushkova’s mansion is considered one of the most beautiful city houses of the early 20th century. On Kremlyovskaya Street, you can see the 19th century Alexander Passage building, which houses the National Library of the Republic of Tatarstan. Not far from the Kremlin street, on Musa Jalil street perpendicular to it, stands the Peter and Paul Cathedral. The cathedral was built at the beginning of the 18th century in honor of the stay of Peter I in Kazan. It is made in the Russian baroque style and is considered one of the most beautiful churches in Russia. The outer walls of the Peter and Paul Cathedral are decorated with paintings and carvings, and inside there is a wooden carved gilded iconostasis of the 18th century. In addition to the iconostasis, the cathedral is known for its shrines: the miraculous Smolensk-Seven Lakes Icon of the Mother of God, the myrrh-streaming Iberian Icon of the Mother of God, the tombs with the relics of St. Jonah and Nectarius, Metropolitan Ephraim of Kazan, who crowned the kingdom in 1613, Mikhail Feodorovich Romanov, and the relics of Bishop Arseny of Jerusalem.

May Day Square, Russia