Saint Sampson Cathedral

Peter the Great decided to build this church so as to commemorate the victory of Russian troops over the Swedish army in the battle of Poltova in 1709. The church was named after Saint Sampson the Hospitable, as the victory happened to be on his saint’s day. Initially built in wood, the green and white cathedral that we now see was erected between 1728 and 1740 following the plans of Italian architect Petro Trezzini. The building underwent various transformations including the addition of four secondary domes in 1761. Restored for the bicentenary of the battle of Poltova, a chapel in “Rastrelli” style was added. A statue in honor of Peter the Great was also erected as well as a bronze tablet recalling his military victories. Religious service stopped in 1938. After another stage of renovation the building hosts since 1999 the “museum of Saint Sampson Cathedral”. Masses are given on holydays. In 2003 a copy of the statue of Peter the Great that is in the Tretyakov Gallery since 1940 was put up.
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