Construction time: 1801-1811
Architect: Andrey Voronikhin
Style: Empire, Late Classicism
Remarkable features: The building was designed to become an Orthodox analogue of the main Catholic church, St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican, and the colonnade was built as an analogue of the famous Bernini’s Colonnade. The emperor Paul I decided to oppose Petersburg to Vatican after the refusal of the Pope to recognize him as a Grand Master of the Order of Malta. The Pope referred to the fact that the Order was not only chivalric, but also monastic, but Paul I was married twice and had ten children.
- Miraculous Icon Our Lady of Kazan (the most revered copy from the icon lost in our days; the original icon was found in Kazan in 1579; Minin and Pozharsky had this icon during the liberation of Moscow from the Poles).
- Grave of Mikhail Kutuzov.
Cathedral open to the public. In the cathedral it is forbidden to take photos, men should remove headdress, ladies – put it on. If necessary, scarf can be bought directly in the cathedral.
Interesting facts: The construction of the cathedral was finished in 1811. The next year the war against Napoleon broke out. When Napoleon was defeated, captured enemy banners were put in the newly built cathedral, and Mikhail Kutuzov, the famous Russian Field Marshal who beat Napoleon, was buried inside the church. After the war, the monuments of Russian Field Marshals and heroes of the war of 1812, Mikhail Kutuzov and Michael Barclay de Tolly, were placed before the cathedral.
“Barclay de Tolly and Kutuzov
Were freezing the French in winter.
And for this reason the Russians glorified them
And placed them in cold without hats”
(Comic verses born after the installation of the monuments)
Mystery: On the main facade of the cathedral, you can notice the “All Seeing Eye”, which can also be seen on dollar bills. Researchers confirm that the Masons use this sign as a symbol of the Creator God. On the other hand, the sign with this meaning appeared in Renaissance, two centuries before the formation of the first Masonic organizations. It is worth saying that Mikhail Golenishchev-Kutuzov held a high position among the domestic Masons.