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The Wooden Palace of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich

 The royal estate of Kolomenskoye runs along the right bank of the Moscow River from Kolomenskaya to Kashirskaya metro stations and is one of the most popular destinations in Moscow outside the city center. Historically, the Kolomenskoye estate was the site of a village founded by refugees from Kolomna fleeing the Mongol-Tatar invasion. During the reign of Tsar Alexis Mikhailovich, Kolomenskoye became a royal residence and in the 1660s a wooden palace was built here. It was a grand palace with richly decorated decorations which was constantly admired by the visiting foreigners. The Tsar's contemporaries called it "the eighth wonder of the word".

Although built only for a summer residence, it became a favorite residence for both Tsar Alexis and his successors. The future Empress Elizabeth Petrovna was born in the palace in 1709, and Tsar Peter the Great spent part of his youth here. The castle survived until the time of Catherine the Great, who had the palace demolished. The wooden palace you see in Kolomenskoye today is a recently built replica from the original architectural plans.


During his reign, Tsar Alexis Mikhailovich demolished all previous wooden structures at Kolomenskoye and replaced them with a new great wooden palace, famous for its fanciful, fairy-tale roofs. It exemplified the anomalous beauty of Russian wooden construction, and astonished everyone who saw it. The palace consists of an intricate combination of about 250 rooms, a maze of corridors and porches decorated with carvings and various elements such as gabled roofs and other ceilings, unusually, the weathercock, and the gilded double-headed eagle.

Petersburg, the palace fell into disrepair, so Catherine the Great refused to make it her Moscow residence. Apparently, Catherine tried to repair the palace and ordered an estimate of the repairs before changing her mind. In 1768, the wooden castle was demolished on his decree and replaced with a much more modest stone and brick structure. Catherine's palace was also demolished in 1872, and only a few gates and exterior buildings remain.


Fortunately, the detailed plans of the original wooden palace had survived, on the basis of which the Moscow government built a full-size replica in 2010. The renovated palace is located about 1 kilometer south of its original location, near a 16th-century stone church known by this name. White Column to preserve the historical foundation. However, the new structure is not entirely wooden – it was built in concrete and then covered with wooden logs.

In addition to the replica wooden palace of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich, Kolomenskoye has many old wooden buildings and various artifacts that were taken to Kolomenskoye from different parts of the USSR for preservation. Similar "conservation by transport" work was carried out in the Republic of Karelia, where dozens of historic wooden buildings were moved from different parts of Karelia to an island for conservation purposes during the 1950s.







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