Polotsk is one of the oldest cities in Belarus. It is located near the border with Russia, in the Vitebsk region.
The population is about 85,000 people.
The first mention of the city dates back to 862, when the Polotsk Principality was founded.
Throughout its existence, Polotsk survivedThe invasion of the Vikings, the invasion of the Crusaders, was repeatedly occupied by the troops of various conquerors. The first prince of Polotsk was Rogvolod. After his death the principality ruled Izyaslav Vladimirovich (988 -1001), the founder of the family of Izyaslavich. In 1307 the city became part of the Principality of Lithuania. In 1563, Polotsk captured the troops of Ivan the Terrible. After 16 years, he returned to the Lithuanian Principality again. After the collapse of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, in 1792, Polotsk is part of the Russian Empire. Since 1991 it is a city of the Republic of Belarus.
Sophia Cathedral - a cathedral built between1044 and 1066 on the right bank of the Western Dvina. The construction began under Prince Vseslav Bryachislavich (Wizard). In 1596 the cathedral passed to the Uniates. After the fire and partial destruction, in 1607, the cathedral was in desolation. In 1618, the Uniate archbishop Iosafat Kuntsevich, rebuilt the church. After that, he more than once experienced a fire and again recovered.
During the Northern War the cathedral was closed and given awayUnder the powder storehouse. In 1710, the warehouse was blown up and stood in ruins until 1738. After 12 years, the Basilica was built on the site of the St. Sophia Cathedral, which was consecrated in honor of the Descent of the Holy Spirit. During the Patriotic War of 1812, the French used the cathedral as a stable. In 1839 the cathedral again passed to the Orthodox. From 1911 to 1914, the cathedral was overhauled. During the German occupation the temple was functioning. Now the church is completely restored and every Sunday it hosts organ music concerts.
Spaso-Efrosinievsky Monastery Was founded in 1120, the Polotsk princessPredslava, but more it is known as Efrosinya Polotskaya. She was the granddaughter of Vseslav Charodeya on the paternal line and the granddaughter of Vladimir Monomakh on the maternal line. At the age of 12, the little princess decided to become a nun. Parents were against it, they predicted a bright future and profitable marriage. The unruly daughter fled and took monastic vows in one of the monasteries, then she received a new one - Efrosinya. A few years later, with the permission of the bishop herself, she moved to one of the cells of the St. Sophia Cathedral. There she translated books. From Bishop Efrosinya received a plot of land near Polotsk and decided to build a monastery there. The monastery has gone through both good times and bad times. In 1579 the monastery became the residence of King Stephen Batory, who gave the monastery to the Jesuits. In 1656, Polotsk was captured by Russian troops and, by order of the tsar, the monastery was returned to the Orthodox. True, not for long. Several times the monastery passed from the Orthodox Church to the Jesuits and back. This lasted until 1832, when he finally became Orthodox, and a little later female. In 1928 the monastery was closed. After the liberation of Belarus from the fascists, nuns settled here again. They lived there until 1960, until the next closing. Since 1990 the monastery is active.
In Polotsk there are many wonderful places that you need and can be inspected.
- The complex of the former Jesuit collegium
- Former Lutheran Church
- Defensive shaft of Ivan the Terrible
- Borisov stone
- Monument to Efrosinje Polotsk
- Red Bridge - a monument to the war of 1812
- The Cathedral of the Epiphany Cathedral
- Monument to Polotsk prince Vseslav Bryachislavich and many other things.
This is only a small story about several citiesBelarus with a rich history. There are many more places and cities, which, unfortunately, we did not have enough time to visit. I want to come back here again and again. To see Brest, Minsk, Vitebsk, Mogilev, Gomel, Grodno, Lida. Visit Dudutki, Belovezhskaya Pushcha, see chalk quarries. I hope I'll write more about traveling to these places.
In general, only positive emotions remained from Belarus. They remember, love and honor their history.