Kolomna Kremlin revisited

I love Kolomna so Anastasia made another trip to this beautiful city with me this summer but this time we took a slightly different route – through the heart of the Kolomna Kremlin.

Kolomna was founded in 1177, just 30 years after Moscow. It was Dmitry Donskoy’s favourite city. It was from there that he led his army to the Battle of Kulikovo in 1380, and here he wedded Princess Eudoxia of Nizhniy Novgorod (that church still exists and is currently being restored). Kolomna became the second most important city in Muscovy in the 14-15th centuries.

Kolomna Kremlin was built in 1525 – 1531, by the order of Prince Vasili III (the son of Ivan III and Sophia Paleologue, and the father of Ivan IV The Terrible). This is the main remaining wall of the Kremlin. 

The most famous tower is called Kolomna Tower, also known as Marinkina Tower (Marina’s Tower). It was a place where, according to a legend, Marina Mniszech, a Polish noblewoman who was the wife of two pretenders to the Russian throne – False Dmitri I and False Dmitri II, was imprisoned, died and turned into a magpie who has been flying around the tower at night ever since. Whether it was true or not but one night a bishop and some Kolomna priests climbed the tower and sprinkled it with holy water.

In front of the Kremlin wall there is a monument to Dmitry Donskoy.

Stepping inside the Kremlin walls… Here is the Brusensky Assumption Monastery about which I talked in my previous post. The red church on the photo is the Cathedral of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. It was originally built in 1852-1858 and it combines features of the Classical and Kievan Russian architectural styles. The white church is the oldest church of the monastery built in the 16th century.

The church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, founded in 1552 by the orders of Ivan the Terrible to mark the capture of Kazan. It is a unique example of a steepled church.

Church of Archangel Michael, built in 1750, then 1828-1835 in the style of classicism. Biggest church in Kolomna.

One of the roads inside the Kremlin.

The Cathedral Square of the Kremlin with a cluster of churches, a monastery and a cathedral. To the left is the white Bell Tower of the Kremlin built in 1672 and the Tikhvinsky Cathedral, first built in 1776 and then rebuilt in pseudo-Russian style in 1861. In the middle is the Assumption Cathedral. And to the right is the Novo-Golutvin Monastery.

The Assumption Cathedral was founded in 1379 by Dmitri Donskoy. It was rebuilt in 1672. It is known that the cathedral was visited by Catherine the Great.

The interior of the Assumption Cathedral. The iconostasis is baroque and dates back to 1772. The paintings of the entire interior were restored in the last 20 years the way they were painted in 1804.

A monument to Saints Cyril and Methodius who in the 9th century created the first Slavic alphabet which became the basis for the Cyrillic alphabet of Russia and some other Slavonic countries.

Novo-Golutvin Monastery. 

The main church of the monastery – St Trinity Church. It was built in 1705 in the provincial baroque style.

Gorgeous windows of the monastery buildings.

Walking on behind the Assumption Cathedral… 

This is the church of St Nicolai the Miracleworker. It was built in 1501 by a merchant Vasily Yuriev and it was the church of Kolomna merchants. The morning service started there at 5am which was an hour earlier than in other churches. This was for the convenience of the city’s merchants who needed to open their shops at 6am.

A typical Russian house of the 19-20th century, now belongs to a church.

The Exaltation of the Cross Church is situated in what was once the trade centre of the city. The current building is built in the empire style and was constructed between 1832 and 1837 replacing an earlier version of the church. During the Soviet era the bell tower and dome were destroyed and were only rebuilt in the 1990s.

Pyatnitsky Gate of the Kolomna Kremlin. This used to be the main gate of the Kremlin. The passage has a shape of a horseshoe, and there used to be a bell inside the passage which was used to warn of the enemy approaching.

The gate has icons on both sides of it.

Next to the Pyatnitsky Gate there is a museum of kalach, a special kind of bread which is only made in Kolomna and is absolutely delicious!

Outside the Kremlin gate one can find this wall decorated with pictures in a popular 19th century style of ‘lubok’ describing specialties of different Kolomna streets. (From Wikipedia: “A lubok is a Russian popular print, characterized by simple graphics and narratives derived from literature, religious stories and popular tales. Lubki prints were used as decoration in houses and inns.”)

The Church of Nikola Posadsky in Kolomna Posad (the merchant district) is one of the oldest churches in Kolomna. It was first mentioned in 1577–1578. The current stone church was built in the early 18th century through donations of parishioners. It is a typical Moscow Baroque merchant’s church abundantly decorated with brick carvings. The top is adorned with 5 rows of kokoshniks (105 of those in total!) and five clustered domes. 

And here is the Museum of pastila which we visited last time and couldn’t miss this time to buy some special sweets.


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