10 Kremlin monuments we’ve lost

The proposed ​​recreation of the Chudov and Ascension monasteries inside the Kremlin is the topic of much debate. What other architectural relics could be brought back?

Founded in 1330, the Church of the Savior in the Pine Forest stood between the Grand Kremlin and Terem palaces. It was demolished by Stalin in 1932-33 to make way for an annex with buffets and smoking rooms for party congress delegates. The site of the cathedral is presently occupied by a five-storey extension to the Grand Kremlin Palace.
The Small Nikolaevsky Palace forms the corner of the Kremlin where Ivanovsky Square intersects Spasskaya Street. At the heart of the palace is the building of the Episcopal House. Emperor Alexander II was born here in 1818, while 1826 saw the celebrated conversation between Nicholas I and Pushkin, who was brought directly from his place of exile for the meeting. The palace was demolished in 1929.
The Church of Konstantin and Elena in the lower section of the Kremlin Garden was built in 1692 by Empress Natalia Naryshkina, mother of Peter I. It was demolished in 1928 under the pretext of creating a sports ground for Red Army soldiers. Now the site is home to government buildings and a helipad.
In 1730-31 the Church of the Annunciation in the Rye Yard was annexed to the rear of the Annunciation Tower, which served as the Kremlin’s belfry. It was demolished in 1932-33 and not redeveloped.
The historical machicolation of Tainitski Tower defended the fortress gates, drinking well, and underground passage. On the platform inside, cannons were installed and fired every day at noon, and on public holidays there were firework displays. It was demolished in 1930.
A monument to Emperor Alexander II, unveiled in 1898, was located in the upper section of the Kremlin Garden. The statue of the emperor stood under the shade of a hipped roof encircled by a covered gallery with mosaic portraits of past rulers of the Russian State. The statue was removed in 1918 by decision of the Council of the People's Commissars. The site was not redeveloped.
A monument designed by Vasnetsov was erected in 1908 on the site of the assassination of Moscow Military District Commander Sergei Alexandrovich by social revolutionary Ivan Kaliaev in 1905 near the Kremlin’s Nikolsky Gates. It was demolished on May 1, 1918, on the orders of Lenin, who personally took part in its removal. The monument was restored in 1998 at Moscow’s Novospassky Monastery.
The two chapels at the Spassky Gates were built in the “Russian style” in 1866. Both belonged to St Basil's Cathedral. The left houses the sacred image of Our Lady of Smolensk as a reminder of the city’s return to the Russian lands in the 16th century. The right is renowned for its sacred image of Christ the Savior, an exact replica of the icon over Spassky Gates. They were demolished in 1929.
To the left of Nikolsky Tower stood the Chapel of St Nicholas the Miracle-Worker, and to the right the Chapel of Alexander Nevsky. They were built in 1821 as memorial monuments to the war with Napoleon in 1812-1814 — from Borodino to the taking of Paris. They were demolished in 1929 together with the chapels at the Spassky Gates.
The chapel at the foot of Borovitskaya Tower contained the “first church in Moscow” — the Church of the Nativity of John the Baptist in the Pine Forest, the interior of which was moved across in 1847 after the ancient building next door that housed it was pulled down. The tower was surmounted by a cross, and nine bells hung from its top tier. It was demolished in the mid-1920s.

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