Tuesday, September 1, 2015
St. Basil's Cathedral, Moscow, Russia
St. Basil's was built to commemorate the capture of the Tatar stronghold of Kazan in 1552, which occurred on the Feast of the Intercession of the Virgin. I will say this time and again, but the expulsion of Tatars from Russia, which happened long long ago is still considered quite a big deal. They really did a number on the Russians and there is no forgetting the getting rid of them.
The cathedral was thus officially named Cathedral of the Intercession of the Virgin by the Moat (the moat being one that originally ran beside the Kremlin), but it is popularly known as St. Basil's Cathedral, after St. Basil the Blessed (a.k.a. St. Basil Fool for Christ; 1468-1552), almost from the beginning. Basil impressed Ivan in 1547 when he foretold a fire that swept through Moscow that year. Upon his death, Basil was buried in the Trinity Cathedral that stood on this site at the time.