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Sampsonievsky Cathedral

St Petersburg

This light-blue baroque cathedral dates from 1740, and having been repainted and restored to its original glory both inside and out, glistens like a pearl amid a gritty industrial area. Its most interesting feature is the calendar of saints, two enormous panels on either side of the nave, each representing six months of the year, where every day is decorated with a mini-icon of its saint(s).

The enormous silver chandelier above the altar is also something to behold, as is the stunning baroque, green-and-golden iconostasis. Don’t miss the frieze of a young Peter the Great, on the wall behind you when you face the main iconostasis.

This is also believed to be the church where Catherine the Great married her one-eyed lover Grigory Potemkin in a secret ceremony in 1774.

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