The Novodevichy Convent



Novodevichy Passage, 1
Subway: sportivnaya

The Novodevichy Convent, also known as the New Maidens' Monastery, is one of Moscow's most beautiful and historic landmarks. It is situated in the south-western part of the city, on a bend of the Moskva River.

Set in a tranquil parkland area, the convent complex is easily accessible and offers visitors a respite from the hustle and bustle of the city.

The location is not only picturesque but also convenient, making it a popular destination for tourists and locals alike who are interested in Russian history, art, and architecture.

novodevichy convent moscow

Novodevichy Convent Buildings

The Novodevichy Convent is an outstanding example of Moscow Baroque architecture and consists of a number of notable buildings and structures.

One of the most prominent is the five-domed Smolensky Cathedral, which houses the icon of Our Lady of Smolensk, a revered Orthodox image. Other significant edifices include the Gate Church of the Transfiguration, the refectory with the Church of the Assumption, and the bell-tower, which was the tallest structure in Moscow at the time of its construction.

In addition to the churches and cathedrals, there are various residential and service buildings within the complex, enclosed by a high wall with twelve towers, exemplifying the convent's former function as both a religious institution and a fortress.

Novodevichy Convent History

The Novodevichy Convent boasts an illustrious history dating back to its founding in 1524, during the reign of Tsar Vasily III. The convent was established to commemorate the capture of Smolensk from Lithuania, which was an important victory for Russia.

Throughout its history, the convent has served various roles, including that of a royal residence, a place of imprisonment for women of the Russian royal families, and a convent for noble ladies.

It has endured through many crucial events in Russian history, including the Time of Troubles, the Napoleonic Wars, and the Soviet period, to name a few.

Notably, the Novodevichy Convent is also associated with famous Russian cultural figures and has inspired artists, writers, and composers. Today, it is both a functioning monastery and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, recognized for its historical and cultural significance.

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