The Zverin Monastery is one of the oldest Russian monasteries, founded not later than the 12th century. It was first mentioned in the chronicles as a female monastery in 1148. By that time, the monastery already existed, and the wooden Intercession Church was destroyed by lightning. The name of the monastery, which derives from the Russian wordзверь - a mammal - originates from Zverinets, a wooden area where the monastery was built. Zverinets is mentioned in the chronicles in 1069, but the monastery was still not built. Archbishop Vasily Kalika built a stone Intercession Church in 1335. This is the oldest building of the monastery which survived. The present stone Church of St. Simeon the God-Receiver was built in the monastery in 1467 on the site of an earlier wooden one, which was built in 1399. The stone church was built to commemorate victims of the plague.
Between 1611 and 1617, during the Time of Troubles, Novgorod was occupied by the Swedes, and the monastery was considerably damaged. In 1721, it was abolished as a separate entity and subordinated to the Syrkov Monastery. In 1727, it was re-established. Between 1840 and 1860, a wall was constructed, and in 1899-1901 the new Intercession Cathedral was built. In the end of the 20th century, about forty nuns lived in the monastery. In the 1920s, after the October Revolution, the monastery was abolished. The buildings were badly damaged during World War II. The restoration works started in the 1960s. Currently, the monastery hosts a seminary for the Novgorod eparchy.
Today three churches have survived. The Church of Saint Simeon, constructed in 1467, is a small church with one apse and one dome. In the 19th century, a secondary building was added from the western side of the church. Frescoes of the 15th century survived.
The Intercession Church, built in 1399, was before 1682 consecrated to the Holy Virgin. It was considerably rebuilt in the beginning of the 17th century, after the Swedes devastated the monastery, and again in 1899-1901, when the cathedral was constructed next to the church.
The Intercession Cathedral was constructed in 1899-1901 in the eclectic style. It is the tallest building in the monastery and has five domes.
The Zverin Monastery is on the World Heritage list as a part Historic Monuments of Novgorod and Surroundings.References:
Roman Walls of Lugo are an exceptional architectural, archaeological and constructive legacy of Roman engineering, dating from the 3rd and 4th centuries AD. The Walls are built of internal and external stone facings of slate with some granite, with a core filling of a conglomerate of slate slabs and worked stone pieces from Roman buildings, interlocked with lime mortar.
Their total length of 2117 m in the shape of an oblong rectangle occupies an area of 1.68 ha. Their height varies between 8 and 10 m, with a width of 4.2 m, reaching 7 m in some specific points. The walls still contain 85 external towers, 10 gates (five of which are original and five that were opened in modern times), four staircases and two ramps providing access to the walkway along the top of the walls, one of which is internal and the other external. Each tower contained access stairs leading from the intervallum to the wall walk of town wall, of which a total of 21 have been discovered to date.
The defences of Lugo are the most complete and best preserved example of Roman military architecture in the Western Roman Empire.
Despite the renovation work carried out, the walls conserve their original layout and the construction features associated with their defensive purpose, with walls, battlements, towers, fortifications, both modern and original gates and stairways, and a moat.
Since they were built, the walls have defined the layout and growth of the city, which was declared a Historical-Artistic Ensemble in 1973, forming a part of it and becoming an emblematic structure that can be freely accessed to walk along. The local inhabitants and visitors alike have used them as an area for enjoyment and as a part of urban life for centuries.
The fortifications were added to UNESCO"s World Heritage List in late 2000 and are a popular tourist attraction.