The Cathedral of the Assumption
This cathedral stands on the site of Moscowĺs first stone cathedral, which was built under Ivan Kalita in 1326-1327. The architect Aristotle Fioravanti built the cathedral in 1475-1479, modeling it after the 12th century Cathedral of the Assumption in the old Russian city of Vladimir, thereby emphasizing Moscowĺs succession to this ancient center of Russian statehood. For four centuries, the Cathedral of the Assumption remained the most important church of Russia. It was here that successors to the throne were crowned (the last coronation being that of Nikolai II in 1894), decrees were announced and metropolitans and patriarchs were elected at church councils.
The ˝athedral was seriously damaged in 1812 when it was ransacked and defiled by Napoleonĺs troops, and in October 1917 during the bombardment of the Kremlin. The last liturgy was held at Easter in 1918 by Patriarch Tikhon, after which the Cathedral was closed and its treasures requisitioned.
From 1395 to 1918 the famous miracle-working Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God stood in the Cathedral. At present The Nail of Christ, relics of Moscow saints and other objects of worship are kept here.