The Chesme Church
The Chesme Church is ranked high among other popular sights in Saint-Petersburg. The place for this construction is quite unusual for the Neva riverside city. It is located on the Leninsky Sovet Street, near the cemetery, where the soldiers are buried.
The decision to build the church was made in 1770, when the Russian fleet defeated Turkish navy. The construction started seven years later, when the Russian empress Catherine II imposed an order. She visited the church many times, spending the time in a special place, made for her there.
In June 1919 the church was closed. In 1925 the bells were removed from the belfry for further remelting, and the cross on the top was swapped by the hammer and the anvil. Then a Scientific Society Archive was located here and later – a cabinet shop of automobile roads. The year 1930 was not very successful for the Chesme Church, as it was damaged by a huge fire, so the interior and the iconostases was completely destroyed. During the wartime, the building was used as a warehouse by the institute of aviation devices construction.
In 1947 the church was laid up for reconstruction as an architectural monument. However, large scale reconstruction works began only in 1960. The decorations were renewed and a subsidiary of a history museum, named «Chesme victory» was opened here. Divine services in the church became a usual thing after the collapse of the Soviet union in 1991. The building was completely restored and a Sunday school for the children was opened.
Nowadays the Chesme Church is a popular religious architectural monument that is included in many guidebooks and routes around Saint-Petersburg. Strict simplicity rules inside the church. It is emphasized by ancient Italian icons. A memorial marble plate is put straight above the entrance to the church. Its façade is decorated by stone tracery of white stone.