Ivangorod Fortress

Ivangorod, Russia

Ivangorod Fortress is a Russian medieval castle established by Moscovian Grand Prince Ivan III in 1492 and since then grown into the town of Ivangorod. The castle is strictly quadrilateral with walls 14 meters tall. The original castle was constructed in one summer. Its purpose was to fend off the Livonian Knights. The castle is strictly quadrilateral with walls 14 meters tall.

Ivangorod was won back later in the year by Muscovite forces from the Livonians, under the command of Prince Ivan Gundar and Mikhail Klyapin. Three thousand troops arrived to retake the castle, rebuild it, and construct a new barracks and stronger bastions. For almost 10 years, the land around the castle was in constant warfare. The fortress and the land around changed hands repeatedly. The castle was reconstructed and fortified many times, becoming one of the strongest defensive structures in the 16th century. The castle was in development until the 17th century, becoming a large, sprawling fortress with several lines of defense.

The Treaty of Teusina (1595) returned the fortress to the Russians. In 1612, the Swedes conquered the fortress, which was bravely defended by a voivode, Fyodor Aminev (b 1560s, d 1628) and his sons. By the Treaty of Stolbova, Ingria was ceded to Gustav II Adolf, king of Sweden. In 1704, Peter the Great captured the castle from Swedish troops, bringing the fortress back into Russian control. Inside the fortress, there are two churches: one is dedicated to the Virgin's Assumption (1496) and the other to St. Nicholas (built in the late 16th century but later reconstructed).

After the early 18th century, the military role of the fortress dwindled due to technological advances. In 1728, a review was carried out of the fortresses in this area, which concluded that the installation had been neglected, and had a low fighting efficiency. An order was issued for restoration of Ivangorod fortress, but after the inspection of 1738 the fortress was designated not adequate for defence purpose.

In 1840, some improvements were carried out in the fortress (roofs were changed), further improvements took place in 1863 and 1911-1914. During World War I, the fortress was captured by Germans on 25 February 1918. From 1919 to 1940, the fortress belonged to Estonia. Despite changing hands several times in the first half of the 20th century, the fortress played no significant role in fighting.

During World War II, it was first controlled by the Soviet Union (1940–1941) and then by the Nazi Germany (1941–1944), which established two POW camps within the fortress and left many of its buildings damaged after their retreat. After the annexation of Estonia by the Soviet Union in 1940 Ivangorod fortress was part of the Russian Soviet Republic. The town and fortress remained with Russia after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the restoration of the independent Republic of Estonia in 1990. Currently, the fortress serves as a museum.

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Address

E20, Ivangorod, Russia
See all sites in Ivangorod

Details

Founded: 1492
Category: Castles and fortifications in Russia

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Ramunas Kaz (3 years ago)
Old fortress with good architecture and historical place of Russsia.
Viktoria Sokolova (3 years ago)
Interesting to locals but hardly anything to do
Harri Mäkivuokko (3 years ago)
Well-preserved medieval Russian castle in Ivangorod opposite of the Narva castle on the Estonian side. The area has very interesting history as a borderline between Russia and Estonia. Currently people flow somewhat easily across the borders.
paolo guglielmi (3 years ago)
oh my what a fortress and museum!!! I have visited hundreds of castles and fortress in Europe and the world but this one is outstanding for the size, the quality of restoration and the state of conservation. walking on the walls you can see magnificent views of narva river and narva facing fortress. the museum is a nicely restored antique building with the whole story of ivangorod and nice models and pictures. there is also a very interesting play area for children where they can play the archaeologist work by digging artifacts in the sand. definitely worh a visit!!!
Suren Abrahamyan (4 years ago)
Excellent sightseeing place in border of Russia and Estonia. 85m between two castles!
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