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Moscow Chambers: Bedroom Chambers
December 5, 2014 23:52


Bedroom Chambers

Other state and residential chambers of the Palace of the Great Prince were built in 1499-1508 years by the Milan “Architectone” Aloisio de Karezano (aka Aleviz Fryazin).  Bedroom Chambers of the grand complex are preserved and now constitute the three lower floors of the Terem Palace.

The furniture in Old Russian living rooms was rather simple. The benches along the walls were used for both sitting and sleeping. However, by the early 17th century there were beds with beautifully carved baldaquins. The tsar’s rooms were repainted almost every year by the best court artists. The wall paintings which have lasted to this day were created in the mid-19th century. Despite the numerous rebuilding and additions, the 17th-century Terem Palace has largely retained its original splendor. The interior decoration of this unique monument of history and art proves the high skills of the architects and painters, their intellectual culture. 

The tsar’s living apartments on the third floor of the palace consist of a suite of five adjoining rooms. Very few guests were honored to be admitted to the tsar’s presence in the upper rooms. The first room of the Terem Palace was the Front Vestibule, or Anteroom. It was also called the Refectory. Every day the boyars gathered there to wait for the tsar. Sometimes banquets were held there. In the second room- the Council or Duma Chamber- the tsar held sessions with the boyars. The next room, the most majestic, is the Throne Hall, or the tsar’s study. The gilded emblems of all the Russian territories adorn the Hall’s purple walls. The next room is the bedroom. It gives access to the Prayer Room. It is covered with painted figures of saints. There are 17th-18th century icons in two gilded carved encasements here. All the rooms in the Terem Palace are small and low and about the same size; each has three windows and a vaulted ceiling. The supports of the vaults are decorated with bas-reliefs depicting birds, beasts and double-headed eagles. The doorframes are low and decorated with painted and gilded stone carving. In those days the floor was laid in oak blocks and then covered first by felt and then by green or red cloth. On solemn occasions carpets were spread on top of the cloth. The stained glass in the windows is made of various squares and triangles and the wooden windowsills are finely carved which all gives a fabulous effect when the sun shines through the colored glass.

The studies of the 1990s found that the palace had pronounced features of Renaissance architecture, from terracotta and stone order decorations to wooden coffered ceilings in living rooms. A two-layer arch gallery (leading to Facets Chamber) stretched along the southern facade of the palace and had a pretty foreign look.

The basement and the ground-floor were occupied by glaciers, storage space, a soap room, workshops and the like.

The residential top floor is formed by the nine chambers divided into three pairs by the spacious entrance halls. The windows of the frontal eastern room look at the Assumption Cathedral, and now it is the only available fragment of the Palace - all other facades are completely hidden by the buildings of XIX century. This room is known as the Golden Tsarina’s Chamber named this way after a particularly luxurious interior improvement in 1589 – the story paintings of the walls of that time are partially preserved.

It was discovered recently that another piece of The Palace of the Great Prince survived in the bulk of relaying of many centuries - the wall of the cellar of the Middle Chamber built into the base of the Great Kremlin Palace of the middle of XIX century.

The studies found an ancient facade with the preserved fragments of two doors and four windows (which formerly looked at the Bedroom Chambers), as well as the traces of fine terra cotta architraves. It should be added that during the gradual dismantling of the Kremlin chambers in the 18-19 centuries their stone was used for the foundation of new buildings, not only inside the Kremlin. The carved blocks of a distinct palace origin were discovered at the Khokhlovskaya Square and at Solyanka not so long ago.


Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Moscow chambers Moscow    

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