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Kolomenskoye
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Kolomenskoye

Kolomenskoye (Коломенское) is an ancient village near Moscow (Russia), which became a part of Moscow in the 1960s. It is the country estate of a former grand prince and tzar. It is an ensemble of 16th- and 17th-century architecture on the high bank of the Moskva River, and was first mentioned in the Ivan Kalita testament in 1339.

Kolomenskoye is a beautiful collection of architectural sites, which Moscovites tend to treat as 'the eighth wonder of the world'. The semantic center of Kolomenskoye is the Church of the Ascension (see picture), one of the first stone-built churches with the hipped roof (was built in the 1662). The church stands up toward the sky from the lower cross-shaped podklet (the ground floor), then a chetverik (an octagonal body) of the churh, and then an octagonal hipped roof, crowned by a little flat head. The narrow pilasters on the sides of the chetverik, the arrow-shaped window frames, the three tiers of the kokoshniks and the quiet rithm of the stone stair arcades and the gulbische gallaries emphasize the dynamic tendency of this masterpiece of the Russian architecture.

Kolomenskoye complex also includes a five-pillar church of the Church of the Beheading of St. John the Forerunner (the Baptist) of Dyakovo (1547, see picture), admittedly buit by the same masters, who later built the Saint Basil's Cathedral on the Red Square of Moscow.

The other sites of the Kolomenskoye: The Church of St. George (with a bell tower), The Church of Our Lady of Kazan, the Spasskiye Gates (Savior) and the Back Gates, the Wooden Gate Tower (see a picture below), the Bratsk Stockade Tower, some other wooden buildings, several ancient land-marks etc.

In the 1667-1671 a Tzar Palace was constructed in Kolomenskoye for the tzar Alexey Mikhaylovich. It was a great wooden palace, made by the best masters of the traditional Russian wooden architecture and construction. The wooden palace have become ramshacle, however, and in the 1768 in was deconstructed. Now the Moscow Government is considering plans of its historical reconstruction.

Near the Kolomenskoye the Dyakovo hill with the ancient Dyakovo gorodishche is situated.

In the deep ravine, which separates Kolomenskoye hill from the Dyakovo hill, a brook flows. In this ravine there are several ancient pagan ritual stones of the Veles heathen. The legend tells that it was in this ravine where the St George (the holy patron of Moscow) breaks the dragon. There are also stones in the ravine, which are considered to carry the traces of the St George horse's hoof.