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The subject index / Holy Transfiguration Cathedral

Holy Transfiguration Cathedral

Categories / Architecture/Architectural Monuments/Religious Architecture (see also Religion.Church)
Categories / Religion. Church/Places of Worship (see also Architecture and Urban Planning)

HOLY TRANSFIGURATION CATHEDRAL, located at 1 Preobrazhenskaya Square. An architectural monument construction by order of Empress Elizaveta Petrovna (architect M. G. Zemtsov) on the site of the quarters for the Preobrazhensky Life Guard Regiment to commemorate the Empress' accession to the throne, which was assisted by soldiers and officers of the regiment. The construction work, which lasted from1743 to 1754, was supervised by architect P. A. Trezzini, who built a five-dome Baroque cathedral. The five-tier iconostasis and the altar ciborium were made by Moscow engravers Kobylinsky according to the sketches of architect F. B. Rastrelli. The icons were painted by M. L. Kolokolnikov. In 1796, the church acquired the status of the Cathedral of All Guards, but in 1825 was severely burnt. In 1825-29, the Cathedral was restored by architect V. P. Stasov, who redesigned the cathedral in the Empire style. The facade of the main building is decorated with a four-columned portico of the Ionic order and stucco moulding reliefs. The building has an impressive illuminated dome drum crowned with a cupola, with four belfry domes on the corners. The four-tier iconostasis was made according to the drawings of Stasov, the icons were created by artists G. I. Ugryumov, A. I. Ivanov, V. K. Shebuev, A. E. Egorov and others; interior paintings were made by artists F. P. Brullo, F. I. Brandukov and S. A. Bessonov according to the sketches by Shebuev. In 1832-33, a fence made of captured Turkish cannons (a monument to the victory in the Russian-Turkish War of 1828-29) was constructed around the cathedral to the designs of Stasov. In 1886, a chapel was built within the precinct (architect I. B. Slupsky). In 1916 construction started on the burial vault for officers killed during World War I (architect S. O. Ovsyannikov; never completed). The Holy Transfiguration Cathedral treasured regimental relics and trophies, its walls bore bronze plaques with the names of Preobrazhensky Regiment officers, fallen in battle. From 1871, the cathedral oversaw a parish charitable society, supporting a hospice, an orphanage, a canteen, a school for soldiers' children and free apartments, and from 1912 - the Brotherhood of Sobriety and Virtue. On the holiday of Transfiguration of Our Saviour Jesus Christ a traditional fruit market was arranged by the cathedral. After October 1917, the Holy Transfiguration Cathedral remained an operational church. The Holy Transfiguration Cathedral gave its name to Preobrazhenskaya Square.

References: Невдачин И. И. Спасо-Преображенский всей гвардии собор: Крат. ист. очерк... СПб., 1904; Антонов В. В., Кобак А. В. Святыни Санкт-Петербурга: Ист.-церков. энцикл. СПб., 1994. Т. 1. С. 117-119.

V. V. Antonov.

Bezsonov Stepan Artemievich
Brandukov Fedor Ivanovich
Brullo Fedor Pavlovich
Egorov Alexey Egorovich
Elizaveta Petrovna, Empress
Ivanov Andrey Ivanovich
Kolokolnikov Mina Lukich
Ovsyannikov Sergey Osipovich (Iosifovich)
Rastrelli Francesco de
Shebuev Vasily Kozmich
Slupsky Ivan Blazheevich
Stasov Vasily Petrovich
the Kobylinskys
Trezzini Pietro Antonio
Ugryumov Grigory Ivanovich
Zemtsov Mikhail Grigorievich

Preobrazhenskaya Square/Saint Petersburg, city, house 1

Невдачин И. И. Спасо-Преображенский всей гвардии собор: Крат. ист. очерк... СПб., 1904
Антонов В. В., Кобак А. В. Святыни Санкт-Петербурга: Ист.-церков. энцикл. СПб., 1994

The subject Index
Preobrazhensky Life Guards Regiment


Grilles (entry)

GRILLES. St. Petersburg boasts a number of unique metal grilles, created in the course of three centuries. Wrought grilles of bars with (sometimes gilded) decorative figures made from flat iron bars (the grille of the Ekaterininsky (Catherine)


GUARDS, life guards, elite, privileged military unit. The Russian Guards were established by Peter I in 1700, when the Preobrazhensky and Semenovsky regiments gained the title of life guards

Military Churches (entry)

MILITARY CHURCHES, churches attached to military units, emerged parallelly with the foundation of the city, set up as field churches in regimental settlements - garrison, infantry and guards quarters

Miracle-Working and Revered Icons (entry)

MIRACLE-WORKING AND REVERED ICONS. The most famous Miracle-Working icon of Our Lady of Kazan — the copy of the 16th century of the lost Miracle-Working icon of the same name, can now be seen in the Kazan Cathedral


OBNOVLENTSY (RENOVATIONISTS), members of a reformatory movement in the Russian Orthodox church. In 1905, a "circle of 32 priests" was formed in St. Petersburg to initiate church reforms

Preobrazhensky Life Guards Regiment

PREOBRAZHENSKY LIFE GUARDS REGIMENT, the oldest infantry guards regiment. Founded by Peter I in 1683 in the village of Preobrazhenskoe by Moscow (hence the name), raised to a regiment in 1692, received the title of guards in 1700

Ryleeva Street

RYLEEVA STREET (until 1923 - Spasskaya Street), located between Radishcheva Square and Radishcheva Street. The first name comes from the Holy Transfiguration All Guards Cathedral. The street was renamed after K.F. Ryleev

Stasov V.P. (1769-1848), architect

STASOV Vasily Petrovich (1769-1848, St. Petersburg), architect, representative of the Empire style. The father of V.V. Stasov. From 1783, worked in the Moscow Bureau of Architecture of the Police Department

Trezzini Pietro Antonio (1692-1760s), architect

TREZZINI Pietro Antonio (1692-1760s), architect, representative of the Baroque style. A native of Italian Switzerland, studied in Milan. From 1726 lived in St. Petersburg, initially worked independently

Zemtsov M.G. (1688-1743), architect.

ZEMTSOV Mikhail Grigoryevich (1688-1743, St. Petersburg), architect, graphic artist, theorist of architecture, representative of the early Baroque. He studied at the Armoury Printing House School in Moscow. He worked in St