Thursday, November 10, 2011

Church of Spilled Blood/Church of the Savior on Blood

Well, I really need to finish up my St.Petersburg posts don't I?

I thought I'd start my more detailed look of St.Petersburg with this church featuring traditional Russian architecture and onion domes.

This church was built on the site where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated and was dedicated in his memory.

Alexander III started construction in 1883 and it was finished during the reign of Nicolas II  in 1907.

After the revolution the church was ransacked with the interior being badly damaged and it was closed in the 1930's. There was even some talk about tearing it down.

In the 1970's church management was changed and 27 years worth of restoration was put into the church which was reopened in 1997.

The result is the amazing interior contructed entirely of mosaics.

These photos do not do these mosaics justice, they are simply phenomenal.

The walls and ceilings are covered in over 7500 metres of mosiacs.

An elaborate shrine was constructed on the exact place of Alexander's death, garnished with topaz, lazurite and other semi-precious stones. Amid such rich decoration, the simple cobblestones on which the tsar's blood was spilled and which are exposed in the floor of the shrine provide a striking contrast.

Interestingly this church has never been used as an actual church.

As I look back at these photos it is hard to believe that I was actually there!

More to come soon.


Avril Tanner said...

These are gorgeous! I can not believe the amount of detail to the buildings!

Rosemary said...

Spectacular building.. your tour of Russia even the tiny bit you have seen gives one a different perspective.

Joanne said...

Wow - it must have taken your breath away! Thanks for sharing!
Joanne xo

Deanna said...

Wow, I can't believe you have seen this in person! Amazing!