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One of the oldest and the most beautiful Russian cities on the Volga river - Yaroslavl celebrates its millennium in 2010. The opinions of historians about the date of its foundation are different, but 1010 is considered to be the most correct. The city always played an important part in the history of Russia.Read more
It had been known until quite recently under the name of Zagorsk. Sergiev Posad enters the number of towns, which enters the so called Golden Ring of Russia. It attracts many tourists because this is one of a few Russian cities full of ancient monuments.Read more
Sergiev Posad is the city, located 70 km from Moscow. It had been known until quite recently under the name of Zagorsk. Sergiev Posad enters the number of towns, which enters the so called Golden Ring of Russia. It attracts many tourists because this is one of a few Russian cities full of ancient monuments.
The main attraction of Sergiev Posad is a famous for the Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra. According to legend, its founder was Saint Sergiy Radonezhskiy in the XIVth century. It was initially known as a Monastery of Lifegiving Trinity. This monastery today is one of the biggest in Russia. Lavra is a citadel of the Orthodox faith and its rich culture is a vivid confirmation of this fact. The Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra was the place of Ivan the Terrible’s baptism. Saint Sergiy Radonezhsky blessed Dmitriy Donskoi in its walls before the Kulikov battle. Modern walls of Lavra stood the siege many times, but the holy place was not conquered. There is a legend that the ghost of the old wall is seen on certain days of summer solstice. It faces the square at that with the cannonballs stuck in it.
In the beginning of the XVIIth century the Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra was under siege of Polish-Lithuanian troop, which numbered thirty thousand warriors. The number of defenders was not more than three thousand. The courage of those who defended the sacred place was really unmatched. Pluck of people under siege increased when monastery founder’s spirit of Sergey Radonezhsky and other saints came to them. This was a final contribution to the victory of the Orthodox citadel. There is a legend that system of underground passages connects the monasteries of the place between each other, therefore the monastery can be considered a unique fortification construction. There are about fifty historical monuments, each of which has inimitable historical peculiarity.
Among the historical sights of the Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra – is the Assumption of Virgin Cathedral which is open on fixed hours. It is known for being built in the middle of the XVI century on decree of Russian tsar Ivan IV, also recognized as Ivan the Terrible. The reason for its construction was annexation of Kazan and Astrakhan khanates to Rus. You can see the Godunov’s tomb near the cathedral. The remnants of Boris Godunov, first non-Rurikid tsar, and his wife Mary lie there. Burial vaults of metropolitans had been buried at the place since XVII century.
Besides, there is a spring with holy water near the cathedral that you can gather in the well, placed in the clock-tower and in the cross. The holly water flows from the cross into the pool. There are also remnants of saint Sergey Radonezhsky on the territory of the Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra. Thousands of pilgrims from all over the world come here to touch the shrine.
It is worthwhile mentioning that in addition to its historical meaning the Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra plays an important role in the modern spiritual life of Russia. There is a theological seminary within its walls. The activity of Moscow theological seminary is closely connected with Lavra. Moscow theological seminary was transferred to Lavra from Moscow after the fire in the capital, caused by Napoleon invasion of 1812.
Savva Storozhesky spring is of big interest for tourists and travelers. According to legend, saint Savva created this spring near the Trinity monastery wall by the power of his prayer. At the end of the last century the clock-tower and font basin were added to this spring.
It is worthwhile mentioning one more place of interest as you go on excursion tour in Sergiev Posad – famous Pushkin well. Situated not long from Lavra, this well is famous for being found by Sergiy Radonezhsky. He took water from it every day and brought it to his brothers in Christ. In the middle centuries the clock-tower is built on this place, which has the name of Pyatnitsky well with open well inside it. Pyatnitsky town church is situated not far from the place, where you can see historic landmarks of XVI century –Pyatnitskaya and Vvedenskaya churches.
The city is considered to be a motherland of famous matreshka, one of the symbols of Russia. These funny painted dolls can be acquired in the souvenir shops and in the stalls. Apart from matreshkas, Sergiev Posad is known for its toys handicrafts. According to legend the first toys were created by the founder of the monastery Sergiy Radonezhsky. You can have a look at the unique collection in the museum of toy, which is also a place of interest in Sergiev Posad.