The city of Sergiev Posad is located 70 km from Moscow and is part of the Golden Ring tourist circuit. It was founded in 1782 by decree of Tsarina Catherine II.
The Trinity and St. Sergius Monastery is the largest monastery of the Russian Orthodox Church. The official date of the foundation dates back to the first settlement of St. Sergius of Radonezh in 1337.
In 1342 the monastic community assumed a significant religious importance for the Orthodox that lasted until the Soviet Revolution, in 1920 the Monastery by decree of the Council of People’s Commissars was closed and only after 1946 it was reopened for worship. The complex of the Trinity – St. Sergius – Lavra was formed over the course of four centuries, from the fifteenth to the eighteenth and includes more than 50 buildings used for various purposes, including more than 10 churches. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Trinity Cathedral is one of the few surviving examples of Moscow’s white stone architecture that dates back to the XIV-XV centuries and is the oldest stone building of the monastery. The architecture of the Cathedral is typical of the era of white stone monuments with the dome that has the shape of a helmet and not what later became the onion dome.
The Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin, located in the center of the Monastery, was erected in the years 1559-1585 by order of Tsar Ivan the Terrible to commemorate the victory over the Mongols in Kazan. In 1800 the Cathedral was partially rebuilt and the five domes were replaced with those in the shape of an onion: the central one gilded while the other four blue with gold stars.
In the monastery complex there are other small churches, chapels and buildings of the sixteenth – seventeenth century such as the Church of the Apparitions of the Blessed Virgin with the Holy Apostles, the Church of the icon of the Virgin of Smolenck, the Church in honor of the Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles and the Refectory of the Monastery of St. Sergius.