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Church of st. George in gruzini (georgians)
The street name “Bolshaya Gruzinskaya” (Grand Georgian) speaks for itself: once in those parts was a vast settlement of people from Transcaucasia, created under the patronage of the Russian emperor and the direct participation of the Georgian king. And although the composition of the population has changed for a long time, the native Georgian church survived through many difficulties. In 1729, by the decree of Emperor Peter II, the former palace village of Voskresenskoe on Presnya was presented to the Tsar of Kartli (central region of Georgia) Vakhtang VI, who moved to Moscow with a suite of about 3,000 people. 10 thousand rubles were allocated from the treasury for the arrangement of a new Georgian settlement, and a royal palace appeared near the present Georgian Square. However, at first there was no church of its own, Georgians visited the nearby church of the Nativity of John the Baptist on Presnya.
In 1750, the Prince Georgy Vakhtangovich founded a wooden church in the name of its patron saint - St. George. At first, it played the role of his home church, and then became a parish. In 1779 the building was completely destroyed due to improper heating furnace of the belfry. The new church was built of stone for over 12 years (from 1788 to 1800). This building is preserved on the west side.
The temple of the XVIII century was built in the style of classicism, at that time the most common. Stretched from west to east, it consisted of a two-tiered bell tower with a porch, a rectangular refectory, an altar apse and a main part. The latter was decorated from the north and from the south by pilasters' porticos and crowned with a broad dome with a head. In addition to the main throne in the name of St. George, the refectory also housed the chapel of the Nativity of Christ, which existed in the old wooden church, and the chapel of St. Peter and St. Paul. The latter was created by the Tsitsianovs who lived in the neighborhood.
In 1870-1872 the building was expanded by the project of the architect N.N. Vasilyev: bell tower was increased by one tier, altars chapels displayed on one line with the main altar. But the greatest expansion occurred in 1895-1899 years: the altar of the old church was demolished and spacious building of a new church in the pseudo- style (project architect VG Candlemas) was attached on the east side. Thus the church of the XVIII century entirely turned to the refectory, while the main part was built anew, east of the old buildings. In this case, the main iconostasis with icons of the XVIII century, was moved from the old to the new temple.
In 1928 the church was closed for worship and housed Electromechanical College. The building was seriously rebuilt: the old part lost the dome and bell tower, new windows were punched, facade decorwas destroyed, the new part received an extension and lost the cross on the dome and was divided in floors inside.
In 1991, the Orthodox community got back the old part of the church of the XVIII century for services. The old part was restored and re- painted by Georgian painters.
The church services are conducted not only on the old Church-Slavic, but also in the Georgian language. The head on the dome was restored, but the bell tower was not reconstructed yet. As for the construction of the end of the XIX century, it still houses Electromechanical College and restoration process didn't start yet.
Mid-19th Century Estate. Main HouseVerkhny Predtechensky Lane, 8, bld. 1
The books from the house owner's library still can be found at antiquity auctions; the books bear their owner's seal: "Ivan Nikolaevich Tsvetukhin, Presnya, near the John the Baptist Church, own house, Moscow".