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The subject index / Kronstadt Fortress

Kronstadt Fortress

Categories / Army. Navy/Baltic Fleet
Categories / Architecture/Architectural Monuments/Fortresses and Forts

KRONSTADT FORTRESS, a complex of fortifications supported by Kotlin Island, intended to defend St. Petersburg from the enemy naval attacks from the Gulf of Finland, the largest naval construction in the pre-revolutionary Russia. The Kronstadt Fortress was founded by Tsar Peter the Great during the Great Northern War of 1700-21. The foundation was marked by the building of Kronschlot fortification and of the battery on the south coast of Kotlin Island (1703-04). In 1706, the fortress was expanded with the Alexander-entrenchment at the western end of the island. In 1709-42, fortifications and an armed harbour were built in Kronstadt; in 1722, the fort island Citadel was constructed. In 1737, all fortifications of the Kronstadt fortress were united under the same command structure. In 1723-47, the central fortress was erected, encircling Kronstadt from land and sea. In 1795-1818, Kronstadt Fortress was partially reconstructed and expanded by adding four Island forts to it. The fortress was badly damaged during the flood of 1824, subsequently entirely rebuilt in stone and brick in 1825-50. In 1861-88, the fortress was refortified again (engineer E.I. Totleben) and re-equipped with rifled artillery. In 1902, the reconstruction of the fortification with concrete began and artillery was upgraded, new front-line and shore-line fortifications were built. By 1917 Kronstdat Fortress comprised 19 Island forts, eight forts and batteries on the northern and southern coast of the Gulf of Finland, 12 forts and batteries together with an enceinte on Kotlin Island; the armament of the fortress totalled about 400 pieces of ordnance; the gunnery of the fortress could cover a distance of 27 kilometres from Kronstadt. The fortress was modernized in 1922-37 and 1946-54. In 1957, it was disbanded and disarmed. In 1704-05, the garrison of the Kronstadt Fortress held off an attack of Swedish land troops and navy; in 1854-55, it held off assaults and bombardment by the British and French navies. In 1919, the military harbour of Kronstadt Fortress was subject to an attack by British torpedo boats. In 1941-44, Kronstadt Fortress with its artillery firing, supported the actions of the ground posture at Oranienbaum bridgehead on the northern coast of the Gulf of Finland. In 1980, a museum under the name Kronstadt Fortress was opened in Kronstadt.

References: Раздолгин А. А., Скориков Ю. А. Кронштадтская крепость. Л., 1988.

G. V. Kalashnikov.

Peter I, Emperor
Totleben Eduard Ivanovich

Yakornaya Square/Kronshtadt, city, house 1

Раздолгин А. А., Скориков Ю. А. Кронштадская крепость. Л., 1988

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Great Northern War of 1700-21


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