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Saint Sophias Cathedral

Kiev, Ukraine

Among all conserved architectural monuments the world famous St. Sophia of Kyiv is the most ancient through Eastern Europe. Based on the Byzantine traditions the work of artists, who has raised this cathedral and decorated its walls with mosaics and frescoes, with its perfection and beauty impresses everyone who crosses the threshold of St. Sophia.

Within the walls of this temple the first generation of Kyiv builders and painters has been trained, here they have studied not only to stone building techniques, which were obscure for them earlier, to new crafts and arts, but also the ability to confer created forms with new cultural meanings and transmit acquired knowledge and experience to their successors. It was the key to occurrence of East-Slavonic world to the range of bearers of European civilization and spurred to reflection and purposeful development of their own cultural tradition.

It has been created as a center of Kyiv Metropolis and the main temple of the state of Rus. Here the Metropolitans have been set, bishops gathered, ecclesiastical laws have been claimed. Here princes were enthroned, here they received foreign ambassadors and concluded agreements. In the cathedral chronicles were carried, there was a scriptorium, a library was established. Under the arches of St. Sophia, perhaps for the first time, sounded "Sermon on Law and Grace". Metropolitan Hilarion - the author of this great ecclesiastical and political work interpreted to recently baptized Kyiv citizens the foundations of Christian worldview and sense of world history, defining in it a leading position of the land of Rus.

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