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The Patriarch’s Palace and the Twelve Apostles’ Church

The Patriarch’s Palace was built in 1653-1655 by Russian artisans for Patriarch Nikon. On the palace’s ground floor there were household services, the second floor housed living quarters of the Patriarch. The ceremonial chambers were located on the first floor. The main ceremonial room was the Cross (or Chrism) Chamber where the meetings of the Holy Council and tsar’s and ambassadorial feasts were held. In XVIII-XIX centuries, Moscow Synod Service was situated in the Patriarch’s Chambers.

Nowadays, the Patriarch’s Palace houses an exposition presenting specific features of the Russian culture XVII century. Masters of Russia, European and Eastern countries created the precious housewares, jewellery, tsars’ hunting equipment, ancient furniture and items of ecclesiastical embroidery presented here. The majority of items were made in national traditions by Russian masters of Moscow Kremlin Workshops and masters from Jaroslavl, Kostroma and other towns.

They represent one of the most important periods of the Russian history that was marked with changes in the outlook and way of living of the Russian people before Peter the Great’s reforms.

The gilded iconostasis of the XVII-XVIII centuries made of carved wood in the home church of Twelve Apostles is of particular interest. It is a wonderful example of carving.

A collection of icons showing the development of icon painting in the XVII century is placed in the church. The works of the leading tsar’s icon painters are on display.

The museum’s exposition shows the new artistic taste of the Russian society in the XVII century and the singularity of the spiritual life of Rus on the edge of the modern history.


Essential Information for Visitors

Address and Contact Details

Kremlin, Sobornaya Pl.
(495) 695-37-76
Metro: Alexandrovskiy Sad

Opening Hours

10.00-17.00 Closed Thursdays.

Back to all Moscow Museums

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