Vyazma, like other small towns in Russia, is distinguished by a special, provincially cozy, peaceful atmosphere. Although a difficult fate fell on the lot of this city. Located on the Old Smolensk Highway, which connected Russia with Europe, it was the first to suffer in both patriotic wars. There are many memorials and monuments in Vyazma that testify to its heroic past.
Despite the large-scale destruction that the city was subjected to, merchants' mansions, churches and monasteries of the 16th-18th centuries, the only surviving tower of the once powerful Vyazemsky Kremlin, have been preserved in its historical center.
What to see and where to go in Vyazma?
The most interesting and beautiful places for walking. Photos and a short description.
John the Baptist Monastery
One of the most famous temple complexes of the Smolensk region. Located on the banks of the Bebri River. It was erected in the 16th century with the permission of Ivan the Terrible. As a result of two wars, it was destroyed to the ground and then rebuilt. In 1976, restoration work began, after which the monastery was revived as a male monastery, after 5 years it was transformed into a female one. The three main temples are Odigitrinsky, Voznesensky and Znamensky.
Church of Hodegetria
Rarely beautiful temple belonging to the John the Baptist monastery. It is of great cultural and architectural value, it is included in the UNESCO heritage list. It was built in the 17th century. Three snow-white domes of the church pressed against each other rise above the pyramid of elegant openwork kokoshniks. In Russia, besides Vyazma, only two places have preserved three-hipped temples - in Uglich and Putinki. After a large-scale restoration, services in the church resumed in 1994.
Acquaintance with the city, as a rule, begins with the central square - Sovetskaya, the former Torgovaya. Numerous monuments and objects of cultural heritage are concentrated here. These include the Bogoroditskaya Church with a museum of local lore, the building of the old customs house, the Central Palace of Culture, Memory Alley, Smolensky Bridge, a milestone, monuments to the Pernovsky Regiment, Russian bast shoes, mother's heart, etc. From the square, the descent leads to the embankment and the Vyazma River.
Holy Trinity Cathedral
Proudly rises above all city buildings. Located in the historical center, on Cathedral Hill. It was erected in the 17th century on the site of a wooden church. It combines features of classicism and pseudo-Russian style in its architecture. In the 1920s it was closed and looted. Services resumed in 1941 and continue to this day. Pilgrims from all over Russia go to the main icon of the temple - the Mother of God of Iberia. It is believed that she saved the inhabitants of the city from the plague in the XVIII century.
Museum of History and Local Lore
The date of foundation is considered to be 1912. Placed in the aisle of the Mother of God Church built in 1727. The museum funds consist of 16 thousand exhibits. Items of peasant life and ancient clothes, weapons and military uniforms, archaeological and numismatic collections, personal belongings of famous natives of Vyazma are exhibited here. One of the expositions is dedicated to Vyazma gingerbread. The museum has an art salon, where the works of local painters and artisans are presented.
Monument to General M. G. Efremov
It was installed in 1946 on the square of the same name. The author of the sculpture depicting the general and several of his fighters in the last minutes of his life is E. Vuchetich. Army commander M. Efremov died in 1942, being in the Vyazemsky boiler. He had the opportunity to escape, but he decided not to leave his comrades in arms. Having been seriously wounded, the general chose to shoot himself in order to prevent the Germans from taking him prisoner. He was buried at the city Catherine's cemetery.
Monument to Anatoly Papanov
A talented and popularly beloved actor - a native of the Vyazemsky land. Here he spent his childhood and at the age of 6 he made his debut on the theater stage. The monument was opened for the 90th anniversary of A. Papanov, in 2012. The actor sits on a bench and, enthusiastically gesticulating, rehearses his next role. The sculptural composition is installed in the center of the city, on the site of the house where the future idol of Soviet viewers lived before the war. This house was destroyed during the war. The author of the sculpture is I. Chumakov.
Monument to Russian bast shoes
In such an original way, in 2012, they decided to perpetuate the memory of the ancient path that connected Moscow with all of Europe. It was the Old Smolensk road. It is believed that it appeared in the XIV-XV centuries, passed through Vyazma. In the entire history of its existence, up to the 20th century, many bast shoes were broken here by ordinary people. Today, the road has lost its meaning, and only the bast shoe, as a symbol of Russian traditions and thousands of kilometers traveled, serves as a reminder of it.
Monument to the Valiant Ancestors
Symbolic dedication to the participants of the battle of 1812. A double-headed eagle, proudly sitting on a pedestal, torments the defeated banner of the French army. At the same time, one of his heads is vigilantly directed towards the west, from where the enemy was advancing on Vyazma. The monument was erected for the 100th anniversary of the battles near Vyazma. After the revolution, the eagle was removed from the pedestal as a symbol of royal power, and a bust of K. Marx took its place. The monument acquired its original appearance in 1962.
Monument to the Pernovsky Regiment
The heroic monument is dedicated to the grenadiers who were the first to enter the city captured by the Napoleonic army. Made in the form of a 6-meter granite column crowned with a symbol of the Russian Empire and military prowess - a double-headed eagle. The monument was erected in 1912. After the revolution, it was dismantled, and restored only on the 150th anniversary of the victory over the French. It is located near the church on Sovetskaya Square.
In the 16th century, at the place where the Monk Arkady prayed 900 years ago, a wooden church was erected and a women's community was formed, later transformed into a convent. In 1812, he suffered from the French, but was restored. After the revolution, it was finally closed. Today, the city library is located in its main cathedral, a literary salon is located in the building of the former almshouse, and a cinema has been erected on the site of the cemetery. The Spasskaya Tower and fragments of the fence have been preserved.
In the 17th century, at the direction of the tsar, a powerful Vyazemsky fortress with 6 towers was erected. The French troops destroyed it in 1812, and after that the building was not restored. The only surviving fortification is the Spasskaya Tower. It consists of 3 tiers, the total height is 25 meters, the thickness of the walls at the base is 6 meters. After World War II, the tower came under the jurisdiction of the Arkadyevsky Monastery and was used as a warehouse and cellar.
In 1736, it was erected on the site of the Spassky Monastery for men, destroyed by the Lithuanians. All costs for the construction and arrangement of the temple were borne by local merchants. After some time, the bell tower was completed in 4 tiers, the entire territory was surrounded by a fence, and a pond was built. In the last century, from the 20s to the 90s, the church was abolished, and various organizations used the building for their needs. The first prayer service, after decades of neglect, was served in 1995.
The building dates back to 1748-49. It was erected with donations from Vyazma merchants and parishioners. Made in the Baroque style, it has 2 floors, the first was "warm" - it was heated in winter. After 15 years, a bell tower was built nearby. In the 30s of the last century, the temple stopped its work. All valuable items were confiscated, workshops and a club were housed in the building, and a substation was built on the site of the churchyard. Services resumed in 1992.
Museum-Reserve of A. S. Griboyedov (Khmelita)
A magnificent architectural and park ensemble, consisting of centuries-old oaks and lindens, a cascade of ponds, a luxurious manor house in the Baroque style. This is the estate where A. Griboyedov spent his childhood and youth. It is located 35 km from Vyazma. The expositions of the museum introduce the history of the noble family and the work of its most famous representative. On the territory of the reserve "Khmelita" there is also a museum dedicated to another native of the Vyazemsky region - Admiral P. Nakhimov.