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    Bogolyubovo

Bogolyubovo is an urban settlement on the Klyasma River, 10 km away from Vladimir. Its population is about 4.1 thousand people (2005). Once it was Bogolyubov Town, the first stone town of the Northern Russia, and the witness of the rise, glory and the tragic death of the Prince Andrey Bogolyubsky.

It was founded in the mid 12th century as the Princes fortified residence palace at the strategic spot near the meeting of the Nerl and Klyasma rivers. As a legend says, when Andrey Bogolyubsky was going north from Kyev in the late 1150s, his horses stopped where Bogolyubovo is located now, and would not step any further. This is supposedly why Andrey established his capital nearby Vladimir and why the icon of the Mother of God that he was keeping became so closely related to Vladimirs, and ultimately Russias history.

Saint Bogolyubov Monastery was established at the palace of Andrey Bogolyubsky. In the 1230s the fortifications of Bogolyubovo were destroyed by the Tatar invaders.

Inside the monastery there has been preserved a part of the princes palace (a tower) and an arch connecting it to the Nativity Cathedral dating back to the 13th century.

Apart from the preserved fragment, the palace used to have a stone wall 800 meters long and a range of palace buildings. Here the Prince Andrey spent 17 years and here he was murdered by hostile boyars.

The survived tower with the spiral stairs was a sort of the palaces inner porch. On the other side of the cathedral there was a similar tower. Now the tower is empty inside, its walls are decorated with the 13th century frescoes depicting scenes of Andreys life and his murder. The hipped belfry above the tower was overbuilt in the 13th century.

The Nativity Cathedral which used to impress its contemporaries with its luxury crashed down in 1722 in the result of an unskillful reconstruction. The present church was built in 1751 with using the stones of the old cathedral.

The major church of the monastery is nowadays the Cathedral of Our Ladys Bogolyubovo Icon (1866, architect K. A. Ton). Nearby the Nativity Cathedral there is Annunciation Refectory Church (1683-1804). The Assumption Church with a belfry was raised in 1841. There are also sacred gates, cell buildings, and other household premises preserved.

Nowadays there is an operating nunnery at the scene of the former residence of the Prince.

In 1165 Andrey Bogolyubsky had one of the most splendid old Russian buildings, the Church of the Intercession on the Nerl built nearby Bogolyubovo (about one and a half km). The temple commemorates the victory of Vladimirs forces over Volga Bulgar tribes, at the same time being the monument to Andreys son Isyaslav who paid his life for that victory. The church went down in the world history as a paragon of amazingly perfect architectural shapes. The church looks simple yet wonderfully harmonious. From the distance the temple seems miniature, like a stone toy, while the forms of its unexpectedly high interior are large and monumental. It is 20.5 meters high up to its cupola.



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Bogolyubovo
  (Vladimir Region)

Cities of the region

    Vladimir
    Suzdal
    Kideksha
    Murom
    Gorokhovets
    Yuriev-Polskiy
    Gus-Khrustalny
    Aleksandrov
    Kovrov

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