St. Paraskevi's Church

Veliky Novgorod, Russia

Church of St. Paraskevi, a small crossed dome church with three naves and four pillars, is one of Russia's oldest churches. It is currently a museum and on the UNESCO World Heritage list as a part of Historic Monuments of Novgorod and Surroundings.

The church was built in 1207 by Novgorod merchants and is named after Saint Paraskevi, who was the patron saint of the merchants. Previously, at least two different wooden Saint Paraskevi churches were standing at the same place, one constructed in 1156 and the second one in 1191.

The church was rebuilt several times. In particular, the dome was made in the 18th century. Between 1954 and the 2000s, the church was extensively restored, and the early walls were uncovered.

The walls are constructed of plinthite and limestone. The church does not close analogs with other contemporary Novgorod buildings, however, it is in many respects similar to the Saint Michael Church in Smolensk. It is presumed that the Saint Paraskevi Church was build by Smolensk masters. The decorative elements used in the design of the church were however taken over by Novgorod architects and became common in Novgorod ecclesiastical architecture of the 14th and the 15th centuries.

References:

Comments

Your name



Details

Founded: 1207
Category: Religious sites in Russia

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Евгений Сорокин (8 months ago)
The stone church of Paraskeva Pyatnitsa on Torgu, which has come down to us in a rebuilt form, was built in 1207 by "overseas" merchants. These are not foreigners, but Novgorod merchants who traded abroad (overseas). It is located in the place where the Novgorod bargaining worked, which opened on Fridays. Paraskeva Friday was considered the patron saint of Novgorod merchants. This is a mythical image in the folk tradition, formed on the basis of the personification of Friday as the day of the week and the cult of St. Paraskeva. The word "paraskeva" in Greek means "preparation, preparation" for the Sabbath, like a half-day. This is such a combination of a person and a day of the week - almost a combination of space and time. The church was not built in the Novgorod architectural traditions. It is believed that the church was originally built by masters from Smolensk. A number of its elements (the shape of the apses, blades, columns) resonate with the architectural traditions of Smolensk. The Church of Paraskeva is one-domed, six-pillar (according to some sources, four-pillar, while four columns seem to be round, which is not typical for Novgorod) with three apses. At the same time, two apses are internal (they do not go beyond the main premises of the church with semicircular protrusions). The eastern part of the temple is elongated (because of this, it has a rectangular shape) and two lateral apses are hidden in this elongation. On three sides in the center of the facades, the temple had two-story vestibules (narthexes). Only the northern one has survived. The western one was completed during the restoration on the basis of the surviving elements. Now there is no vestibule on the south side, only its foundation. In 1670, a warm chapel of Mikhail Klopsky was added to the south side of the church. Above the entrances of the porches (portals) there are niches where fresco painting used to be, now lost from time. The roof of the Church of Paraskeva Pyatnitsa is now eight-pitched, but originally the roof was three-bladed, and this is the first known case of a temple with a three-bladed end in Novgorod. The Church of Paraskeva Friday was generally unlucky. It stood in a close building of the marketplace and there were about two dozen fires in it. It collapsed several times from fires or decay, and then rebuilt (for example, in 1345 and 1670). In the 16th century, the church was two-story. On the first floor there were utility rooms (that is, a sub-church). In 1572, Tsar Ivan the Terrible left the state treasury in Novgorod under the protection of 500 archers and they took it "on Friday", that is, kept it in the church where there was a sub-church. In the 17th century, the Church of Paraskeva Pyatnitsa owned the church shop land for sale, and the shops and barns (about 20) that stood on it were leased. Many of them were near the church itself or attached to it. In the pictures from the 19th century, the church is very difficult to recognize. It is plastered and white, but, besides this, the whole church is covered with various crooked, multi-level extensions, reminiscent of sheds and loggias, and partially falling apart. The church appears to have continued its business of renting out shops. During the war, the church did not suffer much, but then it was restored for a very long time. It is a museum object, but the church is closed and it is impossible to get inside. The church received its current appearance as a result of restoration work. The results of numerous reconstructions over the centuries have merged in it, and in general it is impossible to say to which architectural style it can be attributed. This is eclecticism. The lower part of the walls and interior furnishings belongs to the original construction, and then there are layers of the 13th, 16th and 19th centuries. The dome was erected in the 18th century, that is, the dome is not original. Masonry areas of the 13-16th centuries were freed from plaster. But on some parts the plaster remained, for example, on the apse and drum, in the upper southern part of the western facade and in the upper two-thirds of the southern facade. This mosaic makes the church look strange. Plastered areas and areas of exposed brickwork alternate haphazardly, asymmetrically and unevenly. Maybe from a historical and cognitive position, this is justified, but from an architectural and aesthetic point of view, this diversity is somehow not very good.
Наталья Беспятая (9 months ago)
This is history!
Bella Rose (2 years ago)
Cool
Mircea Stoica (2 years ago)
Fantastic place, first democratic assembly in Rusia.
Дмитрий Громенюк (3 years ago)
Древность одним словом. Чувствуется энергетика.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Kirkjubøargarður

Kirkjubøargarður ('Yard of Kirkjubøur', also known as King"s Farm) is one of the oldest still inhabited wooden houses of the world. The farm itself has always been the largest in the Faroe Islands. The old farmhouse dates back to the 11th century. It was the episcopal residence and seminary of the Diocese of the Faroe Islands, from about 1100. Sverre I of Norway (1151–1202), grew up here and went to the priest school. The legend says, that the wood for the block houses came as driftwood from Norway and was accurately bundled and numbered, just for being set up. Note, that there is no forest in the Faroes and wood is a very valuable material. Many such wood legends are thus to be found in Faroese history.

The oldest part is a so-called roykstova (reek parlour, or smoke room). Perhaps it was moved one day, because it does not fit to its foundation. Another ancient room is the loftstovan (loft room). It is supposed that Bishop Erlendur wrote the 'Sheep Letter' here in 1298. This is the earliest document of the Faroes we know today. It is the statute concerning sheep breeding on the Faroes. Today the room is the farm"s library. The stórastovan (large room) is from a much later date, being built in 1772.

Though the farmhouse is a museum, the 17th generation of the Patursson Family, which has occupied it since 1550, is still living here. Shortly after the Reformation in the Faroe Islands in 1538, all the real estate of the Catholic Church was seized by the King of Denmark. This was about half of the land in the Faroes, and since then called King"s Land (kongsjørð). The largest piece of King"s Land was the farm in Kirkjubøur due to the above-mentioned Episcopal residence. This land is today owned by the Faroese government, and the Paturssons are tenants from generation to generation. It is always the oldest son, who becomes King"s Farmer, and in contrast to the privately owned land, the King"s Land is never divided between the sons.

The farm holds sheep, cattle and some horses. It is possible to get a coffee here and buy fresh mutton and beef directly from the farmer. In the winter season there is also hare hunting for the locals. Groups can rent the roykstovan for festivities and will be served original Faroese cuisine.

Other famous buildings directly by the farmhouse are the Magnus Cathedral and the Saint Olav"s Church, which also date back to the mediaeval period. All three together represent the Faroe Island"s most interesting historical site.