Tour guide in Moscow
Guide touristique à Moscou
Reiseleitung in Moskau
Excursion to Saint Basil's Cathedral with private tour guide.
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Church of Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem
The Western church was consecrated in honor of the Entry into Jerusalem, which is celebrated a week before Easter and it’s called Palm Sunday in Russia. Every year on Palm Sunday since the 16th century solemn liturgy on this day was accompanied by a crowded procession - march "on an dunkey" with the participation of the tsar and the Metropolitan (later Patriarch).
Religious procession on Palm Sunday at the beginning initially was carried out inside the Kremlin, and after the construction of the Intersession Cathedral the order of procession changed. It began from the Cathedral of the Assumption, passed through Frolovskaya (Spasskie) Gate and was directed to the Church of the Entry into Jerusalem, where prayer was accomplished. The procession represented the gospel event. Tsar led the bridles of "donkey" - a horse covered with a white cloak with long sewn ears. Primate sat on it, he symbolized Christ entering Jerusalem. He was followed by people with icons, banners and willows. Ahead ran the children and covered the road with clothes and willows. In the time of Peter I beautiful custom was abolished.
One of the four largest churches is a two-story octagonal pillar, covered with a vault. The church has a relatively large and solemn character of decoration. Its height is 23m. Above the northern entrance there are traces of the shell fragments that hit the wall in October 1917.
During the restoration there were opened fragments of architectural decoration of the XVI century. Their authentic view is saved without the restoration of damaged parts. Ancient paintings were found in the church. White walls emphasizes the architectural details, performed by architects with great imagination.
The white stone floor of 18 century was preserved.
The existing now iconostasis was moved in 1770 from the demolished Cathedral of St. Alexander Nevsky of Moscow Kremlin. It is richly decorated with delicate gilded tin plates, which add lightness to the massive structure. In the middle of the XIX century Iconostasis was supplemented with carved wooden details. The icons of the lower row tell us about the Creation of the world.
Probably, with the iconostasis in the Cathedral appeared a unique icon "St. Alexander Nevsky in the life" of the 17th century. Its centerpiece depicts a pious Prince, there are 33 stamps around him representing the canonical stories, miracles of healing and real historical events: Battle of Neva and Kulikov, Prince trip to Khan's quarters, his death, and so on.
At the top of the front of the church the base of pillars or columns preserved, probably the remains of the entrance decoration.
Church of St. George of Armenia
Reverend George was educator of Great Armenia (died in 335) and bishop of Armenia. He turned tsar and the whole country into Christianity. His memory is celebrated on 30 of September (October 13). In 1552 an important event for the campaign of Ivan the Terrible took place – explosion of Arskaya tower in Kazan.
One of four small churches of the cathedral has a height 15 m. The church is a quadrangle changing into low octagonal structure. The symmetry is broken due to the passage between this church and the central one. The light drum is overlapped by the vault with an image of swirling rosette. The interior of XVI century is restored in the church: ancient windows, half-columns, cornices, brick floor laid in fur-tree form. Like in XVII century the walls are whitewashed that underlines the strictness and beauty of architectural details.
Iconostasis consisting of icons placed on horizontal transoms (wooden joists) was reconstructed in 1920-s. It consists of the icons of XVI-XVII century. The tsar gates are shifted to the left due to the breaking of the symmetry of the internal space of the church. The lower part of iconostasis is closed by silk and velvet shrouds with an image of Golgotha Crosses.
Interior of the church is supplemented by “thin” candles – big wooden painted candlesticks of ancient form. In the upper part there is metal foundation where small candles were put.
Candela of XIX century adds special beauty to the church. It’s decorated with many-colored enamel.