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Peter and Paul Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Russia

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Peter and Paul Cathedral

Peter and Paul Cathedral

iStockphoto/Korabel
The Peter and Paul Cathedral is located in the Peter and Paul Fortress in St. Petersburg, Russia. Built by Peter the Great in the first half of the 18th century, it is a symbol of the city.

Significance of the Peter and Paul Cathedral:

The Peter and Paul Cathedral is significant for many reasons. Its spire set the height limit for all building in St. Petersburg following a decree by Peter the Great that said no structure could be built taller than the spire. As a part of St. Petersburg's identity, opposition has been felt against threats to this tradition (see Proposed St. Petersburg Tower Breaks with Tradition).
The Peter and Paul Cathedral is also significant as the final resting place for royal rulers of Russia since the time of Peter the Great, with a couple of exceptions. Most recently, those remains thought to belong to the last Romanovs, Nicholas II and his family, have been interred here in the Chapel of St. Catherine.

History of the Peter and Paul Cathedral:

The Peter and Paul Cathedral that stands today is the second structure to stand on the site. The first church was built in the first few years of the 18th century. This was a temporary structure that was replaced by the current stone building a few years later. The Baroque style of the church departed from traditional Russian Orthodox designs because it was Peter the Great's intent to create a city that looked to Europe rather than to Russia.

Visiting Peter and Paul Cathedral:

Peter and Paul Cathedral in the Peter and Paul Fortress is located on the island Zayachii Ostrov, accessible from Trinity Bridge. Here you will have to buy a museum ticket, which also permits entry into the cathedral. However, you can enjoy free entry into the Peter and Paul Cathedral from 6 - 7 pm Thursday through Tuesday.
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