From Naryshkin Baroque to the 21st century. Five Yasenevo's landmark buildings

From Naryshkin Baroque to the 21st century. Five Yasenevo's landmark buildings
Historian and Moscow researcher Mariya Kalish tells about two estates, Moscow Baroque monument and Byzantine traditions in modern temple architecture.

For the third year in a row, the educational project of the Museum of Moscow  'Street Lecture Course.  Local History' brings together Moscow citizens and guests to listen to street lectures by Moscow researchers and historians in different Moscow locations, from Zamoskvorechye to Krylatsky districts.

In early July, Season 3 of 'Street Lecture Course' started.  Between the meetings, mos.ru will publish the previous season's lecture notes.  The first season was about Kitai-Gorod. Today's lecture is devoted to Yasenevo district.

St. Peter and Paul Church

40/7 Novoyasenevsky Prospekt

St. Peter and Paul Church was built in 1751-1753, most likely according to the design of drawings of the church built in the Kuskovo estate of counts Sheremetev. That time, Fyodor Lopukhin, a grandson of the father-in-law of Tsar Peter the Great, related to the famous Sheremetev family, owned Yasenevo village, on the territory of which the church was constructed.

The bell tower and the refectory appeared only in the 1820s and 1830s, when a large-scale reconstruction of the temple was initiated by Prince Sergei Gagarin, the next Yasenevo's owner. In 1822, Leo Tolstoy's parents were married in this Church.

The next Church's reconstruction took place in 1860-1865, with the present appearance of the facility formed featuring forechurch, bell tower and the temple.

In the 1930s, the Church was closed. The building was used as a state farm warehouse, and the paintings dating back to the 18th century were lost. In 1973-1976, the authorities decided to upgrade it once again (simultaneously with the neighbouring estate's restoration), with crosses mounted on top of the bell tower. Nevertheless, the Church still operated as a warehouse at the car repair facility. The Orthodox community retrieved it only in 1989. In 1997, the Cathedral was transferred to Optina Pustyn's metochion of the Vvedensky Monastery.

Yasenevo estate

42 Novoyasenevsky Prospekt

More about the estate. It has rather eventful history: in different years, it belonged to the princes Lopukhin and counts Sheremetev, and until the end of the 16th century, part of its land was owned by Ivan Kalita's descendants, including Tsar Ivan the Terrible.

Fyodor Lopukhin inherited Yasenevo in 1727, and in the 1730s, the architect Ivan Michurin designed stone-made main building and wings that replaced wooden facilities with a windmill also erected on the site. In 1795, Princess Anna Beloselskaya-Belozerskaya bought the estate and ordered to reconstruct the new property, with mezzanines added to the central parts of wings. In addition, Princess ordered to arrange a stable yard in the estate you may still see now.

A few years later, the estate passed to Paul I's mistress, Anna Lopukhina. Soon she married a diplomat Pavel Gagarin and Yasenevo became their family estate.

After the October Revolution, a sovkhoz (state farm) was opened here. In 1924, the main building burned down. For a long time, only its foundation was preserved until the restoration and recreation of the estate complex launched in the 1970s.

Temple of Protection of the Most Holy Mother of God

7 Litovsky Boulevard

Temple of Protection of the Most Holy Mother of God has been recently constructed as the need for a second temple was urgent at the end of the noughties, since St. Peter and Paul Church could no longer accommodate all the parishioners. The work began in 2008, with the collection of funds for construction initiated by local residents. Its architects decided to adhere to the Byzantine traditions, quite popular trend in the modern temple architecture of Moscow. The temple's interior is really outstanding, as it is completely clad in mosaics.

Kazan Church

123b Profsoyuznaya Street

There are only a few churches built in Naryshkin (Moscow) Baroque style in Moscow,  with the Kazan Church comprising five tall candle-shaped towers among them. Uzkoye estate that was to become a church's construction site in the future was acquired by a statesman Governor Maxim Streshnev, a cousin of tzaritsa Yevdokiya Lukyanovna of the Romanov family.

Later, the estate was bought by boyar Tikhon Streshnev, a distant relative of the previous owner. He started the Church's construction. Its architect is still unknown, although for a long time it was believed that it was Osip Startsev, the famous temple builder.

There is an interesting legend related to this Church: it says that Napoleon watched the retreating French army from its belfry.

It is not surprising that in the 1930s it was also closed with a storage of rare books arranged in its premises, including publications of purged authors, religious literature and much more. The Church was transferred to the community of believers in 1990, and started to operate two years later.

Uzkoye estate

123 Profsoyuznaya Street

In the 20th century, Uzkoye estate  became famous due to the sanatorium of the Academy of Sciences opened on its grounds. Thanks to this, it has been preserved in its pre-revolutionary condition until present, with its main building, Nebesnyye exit gate, the main entrance and greenhouses.

Prince Pyotr Trubetskoy was the last estate's owner. Uzkoye was then used as a country house. He also managed a large-scale reconstruction after the architect Sergei Rodionov's design. The main building was reconstructed, acquiring classical features with a touch of neoclassics, more typical for the late 19th century.

In 1918, a sovkhoz (state farm) under the Moscow Commandant's Office was opened here. As it actually worked for the Kremlin, it enjoyed special privileges. The main building hosted sanatorium for sickly children, later handed over to the Central Commission for improving the life of scientists at the Council of People's Commissars. Since 1937, the best Russian researchers recreated here, with Vladimir Vernadsky, Nikolai Zelinsky, Sergei Chaplygin and many others among them.