July 27 in Russian history

Great princes fighting over Moscow and the beautiful cathedral that rose from the ashes are recalled in tonight’s Historama.

­Moscow’s winding road to glory

On this day in 1147, Moscow got its first ever mention on record. Some also regard this day as the city’s real birthday.

Moscow’s early days were hard times for Russia. Warring princes were tearing the country apart.

One of those princes, Ivan Kalita, realized that Moscow had an ideal location. He managed to unite a number of princedoms around the emerging city.

That was basically why it ended up becoming the capital.

­Phoenix cathedral

Today in 1836, work started on Christ the Savior in Moscow. It took more than 40 years to complete.

In 1931, the cathedral was dynamited on the order of one of Stalin’s ministers.

Soviet leaders wanted to build a giant Palace of Soviets there, but this never happened. Instead, they built an outdoor public swimming pool.

In the early 1990s, Yeltsin ordered that the original cathedral be rebuilt on the same spot. Now back to its former glory, it is believed to be the tallest Orthodox church in the world.

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