Cesme Church and Palace

On the site where the Cesme Church is located, in the first half of the 18th century a swamp which the Finnish people called the frog bog used to be. A legend says that it was the place of meeting of Catherine II with a messenger who brought her news about the glorious victory of Russian troops over the Turkish fleet near Cesme on the 26th of June, 1770. The messenger did not find the Empress in the Winter Palace and hurried to catch her on her way to the Tzarskoye Selo. In honor of historical event the Empress ordered to construct the palace on the site of meeting with the messenger. A church was built near the palace a few years later.

The palace was intended for the rest on the way from Saint Petersburg to the Tzarskoye Selo. It was designed by architect Velten in 1774-1777. He used the medieval English castle Longford as a sample. The Cesme Church and palace have Gothic motifs in their design. On the corners of the palace there are towers with eye-sockets, and in front of the building there were moats with hanging bridges above them.

In 1780 the Cesme Church near the palace was sanctified. The wall surface of the church is decorated with narrow vertical rods and plastic lancet arches, intersected with high lancet windows. The walls are topped with a parapet and pinnacle turrets. The palace and the church were called Cesme in the 10th anniversary of victory in Cesme Battle.

Over two centuries, the Cesme Palace and the Cesme Church have been rebuilt and restored many times and look different from the original. Once the Cesme Church housed the exposition, dedicated to the history of the famous Cesme Battle, but in 1991 the church was turned into the functioning temple and used for prayers.

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