8 curiosities of Saint Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow

His image is unmistakable. It is one of the treasures of Moscow. A striking temple with its domes and spectacular colors. Today We want to tell you about some of the curiosities of Saint Basil’s Cathedral. Do you want to come with us on this mysterious journey?

Curiosities of Saint Basil’s Cathedral

Almost five hundred years of history go a long way, and this magnificent temple has witnessed much of Russian history. Witness, and sometimes also protagonist. Therefore, there are many curiosities of the Cathedral of San Basilio. We tell you just a few

1. It was ordered to be built by Ivan the Terrible

Domes – Vladitto

It was in the mid-16th century that Ivan the Terrible had this imposing church built. There was a reason: to fulfill a promise. If he managed to conquer the Khanate of Kazan (which he did), he would erect a temple in the center of the Russian capital. Only seven years later the temple was consecrated.

2. Its nine chapels

Another of the curiosities of Saint Basil’s Cathedral is that it is made up of nine independent chapelsone of which rises as the central tower.

However, neither is more important than the other, since they all have the same meaning. They represent each of the saints belonging to the holidays in which Ivan won a battle. Interesting?

3. Ivan the Terrible did his thing

Saint Basil’s Cathedral –

Legends say that as the result left the tsar absolutely impressed, he decided to blind the architect. He tried so that she could never reproduce anything like it again. However, it seems to be just that, a legend, as there are even doubts as to who designed this jewel.

4. Who was the architect?

We said that there are doubts about the authorship of the project. As well, tradition says that there were two architects: Barma and Postnik. But it seems that they could be the same person, Postnik Yakovlev. Architect who, by the way, continued to work years after Saint Basil’s Cathedral was finished.

And more doubts arise. Some claim that, like some parts of the Kremlin, it was built by an Italian architect invited by the Tsar.


“A building has two lives. The one imagined by its creator and the life it has. And they are not always the same.

-Rem Koolhaas-

5. The original name

Domes of the cathedral – Kris3

Its original name is Cathedral of the Intercession of the Virgin next to the moat. A name that refers to the location of the temple, located next to the moat, which served as the defense of the Kremlin until the beginning of the 19th century.

6. Why Saint Basil’s Cathedral?

Saint Basil was a recognized figure in the country. It was said that he foresaw the futureHe went naked and barefoot through the streets and lived on charity. The peculiar circumstances that surrounded him made people believe that he performed miracles and that he even aroused the fear of Ivan the Terrible.

In fact, the tsar himself ordered to bury him in the church of Holy Trinity. However, years later, Tsar Fyodor Ivanovich had his remains brought to this cathedral and ordered the construction of a chapel to house them, which is why the church bears his name.

7. Almost disappeared

Red Square – Javen

All ancient monuments have gone through bad times, and the Cathedral of San Basilio was not going to be less. It was about to disappear due to fires. During Napoleon’s invasion they wanted to blow it up and in Stalin’s time there were plans to demolish it and give more space to the Red Square.

Regarding this last plan, it is said that the person in charge of the general plan for the remodeling of Moscow went to see Stalin. He was carrying a model and from it he removed the cathedral. They say that Stalin’s response was: Put her in her place! Saint Basil thus escaped demolition.

8. It was a tetris image

Who has not played tetris. Do you remember the image that was seen when you opened it? Yes! Saint Basil’s Cathedral! But what was the cathedral doing in tetris? This game was created by the Russian Aleksei Pazhitnov and used the image of the church as an opening.

What do you think of these curiosities of Saint Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow? Surely now you want to see this wonderful building even more.

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