This monastery was founded by Sergius of Radonezh in 1337 and now it is the largest monastery of the Russian Orthodox Church. It is located in the city of Sergiev Posad, Moscow Region and is the center of attraction for millions of pilgrims from all over the world.
To be honest, we spent a very short period of time here. Shooting is purely overview. We had a long road ahead of us and of course in the future there will be a second visit for a longer period of time and shooting more detailed photo and video material.
So, as I wrote above and as many people know from history, the monastery was founded by Sergius of Radonezh and his brother Stefan. They settled on a hill called Makovets and built the first wooden church there in the name of the Holy Trinity. After some time, Stefan went to serve in Moscow, while Sergius remained. Gradually, other monks began to settle nearby and the place began to turn into a monastery. After the blessing of St. Sergius by Patriarch Philotheus of Constantinople (Byzantine Empire), a communal charter was introduced. The monastery immediately became not only the spiritual center of Rus’, but also a powerful support for the Moscow principality. In 1392, Sergius of Radonezh left this world and was buried in the Trinity Cathedral.
The role of the monastery has always been very high, both in the spiritual life of the people and in the political one. Known historical facts how the monastery blessed the princes on large campaigns, participated and helped in the fight against the Tatar-Mongols, with the governments of the False Dmitrys, in the Time of Troubles. Ivan the Terrible performed a prayer service here before the capture of Kazan. During the reign of Peter I, the monastery supported him in opposition to Princess Sophia. The status of the Lavra was assigned to the monastery by decree of Empress Elizabeth Petrovna in 1742.
Now on the territory of the monastery there are more than 10 churches and temples. But for quite a long time, the Trinity Cathedral was the only stone building on this territory. The paintings and the iconostasis in it were made by Andrei Rublev and Daniil Cherny.
In 1476, craftsmen from Pskov built the Church of the Descent of the Holy Spirit (according to some sources, the Spiritual Church).
Since about 1540, the construction of white stone walls around the monastery began. It was built from more than 10 years and this is how the territory was delineated, which remains so to this day. The walls were strengthened over time, protective ditches appeared, because thanks to this, the monastery also became a fortress.
Under Ivan the Terrible, a new temple was laid, which is called the Assumption. By order of the tsar, it was a copy of the Assumption Cathedral of the Moscow Kremlin. It was completed after the death of the king in 1585, because the construction was interrupted by a major fire.
In 1623, the Nikonovsky Temple was erected, which contains the relics of Nikon of Radonezh, a beloved student of Sergius of Radonezh.
Then came the Church of the Monks Zosima and Savvaty of Solovetsky, the Refectory Church, the Church of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist, the Mikheevskaya Church, the Church of the Smolensk Icon of the Mother of God Hodegetria and the Assumption Chapel. Not all churches and temples were captured by my camera lens, but still ahead.
There are three springs on the territory of the Lavra, and each of them is considered healing. Assumption well, the Spring of Savva Storozhevsky and the spring at the Kelar pond. The Assumption Well is located in close proximity to the Assumption Cathedral, above it there is a stone chapel. Nearby stands a canopy, which has a dome with a cross and a cast-iron bowl, from which pilgrims draw water.
I also note that on the territory of the monastery there is the tomb of the Godunovs and many representatives of noble Russian families and families, such as Belsky, Glinsky, Obolensky, Odoevsky, Vorotynsky, Dmitry Trubetskoy and others.
The tallest building on the territory of the monastery is a five-tiered bell tower. It was erected in 1770 and is one of the most unique architectural monuments of the 18th century.
Initially, the bell tower was supposed to be three-tiered and the creator of the architectural project was Johann Schumacher, but later the project was transferred to Dmitry Ukhtomsky, who made significant amendments. When the bell tower was completed, at the time of 1770 it was the tallest building in Russia. One of the bells is the king bell weighing 72 tons.
Now about 200 monks live on the territory of the monastery. Also at the Trinity-Sergius Lavra there is the Moscow Theological Academy, one of the oldest theological educational institutions of the Russian Orthodox Church. The academy trains priests in 8 areas, the library has a huge number of old books and manuscripts, the teaching staff of more than 200 teachers, doctors and professors.
And a few more pictures taken in the monastery:
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