Cathedral of the Nativity

Suzdal 2


This picture was taken in 1912 by the Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii. The picture is of the Cathedral of the Nativity of Christ, which is located in the town of Suzdal in Vladimir Oblast, Russia.

suzdal map

The history in Suzdal dates back to 1024, making Suzdal one of the oldest Russian towns.  At one point in time Suzdal was functioning as the capital when Moscow was still clustered with cowsheds. Suzdal began to decline in political importance and as a result of this the town became a religous center and had projects funded by Vasily III and Ivan the Terrible in the 16th century. During the 17th and 18th centuries wealthy merchants had paid for 30 churches to be built. One of the things that I found interesting about this town is that during 1864, local merchants had failed to convince the Trans-Siberian Railway into going through their town, because of this Suzdal was pretty much bypassed by the 20th century. This is why so many churches remain in the town because they were not torn down or burned to build the railroads. The town today operates as an important tourist center, which features old Russian architecture mostly churches and monasteries.

The Cathedral of the Nativity of Christ, which was originally constructed in the 11th century is one of the eight White Monuments of Vladimir and Suzdal and is a major tourist attraction in Suzdal. I would really like to visit this town to see the many churches and monasteries that are currently still in place. Much of the architecture is still in place since it did not get torn down due to the railroads so it really would be an interesting place to see. While I was looking up information I found a Washington Post article about a couple that went to Suzdal to see the town and it was really interesting to hear how the town has really held on to its architecture and still looks very much like what it did 50 years ago.

comradeThis post was on Comrade’s Corner this week awarded by the editorial team!




3 thoughts on “Cathedral of the Nativity

  1. Your post was very interesting to me because you stated how the town looks much like it did more than 50 years ago! It is quite difficult for present day towns to keep up with the original architecture and buildings. The Cathedral of the Nativity of Christ is so unique looking! Many towns across the nation tend to build replicas of historical buildings, but what makes a town even more meaningful is when the original buildings are kept up with. Your post is very informative, taught me where Suzdal is located and how it is one of the oldest Russian towns.


  2. First off, I love whatever theme you are running on your blog! It is very pretty. As far as your post itself, nice work this week! I like the map you included because it shows the “Golden Ring of Russia”, which consists of a number of different important old cities like Suzdal that have played an important role in the history of the Orthodox church. I have been to the other two Golden Ring cities on the map (Yaroslavl and Rostov) and I can tell you that they are truly amazing! It was almost unreal to walk through monasteries and churches that have stood for so long throughout history. Good job again, especially with your comment on why it was the case that Suzdal was able to preserve its rich religious history.


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